Thread: Project Hugs Version 4.0

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  1. #26 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Installed and working! Well, the range isn't very impressive, but it does lock and unlock the doors that have working actuators. Fob was already programmed to the receiver, so I literally just installed it in the dome light, plugged it in, and put the dome light back in place.

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  2. #27 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    So I picked up a Hayden trans cooler kit to help the trans with the heavy accumulator springs that are in it when it starts getting hot. Does it matter if this thing goes before or after the factory trans cooler in the radiator? If so, can anyone help me with which line is the in, and which line is the out of the radiator cooler?

    Hoping to get to some cutting and clearancing on this thing, soon. Been watching the discussions on stretching the front axle forward, as the clearance to the firewall gets close quickly. Opening up the wheel arches, adding room in the front arches for the tires to turn even with the suspension compressed, and replacing the rusty rockers with 2x4" 3/16" wall tubing are on the agenda.

    This weekend I'm putting the wife's damaged GTI back together, so hopefully I can get back on the more fun aspects of this soon!

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    Last edited by Yjsaabman717; 01-15-2019 at 06:45 AM.
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  3. #28 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    I've run two different trans coolers, one was a big passive one that I mounted in front of the radiator, and when I got tired of the Jeep getting too hot from blocking air flow I switched to a Derale with two fans that I mounted in the engine compartment. I bypassed the radiator trans cooler with each of them, as I felt that the idea is to cool the fluid. With that being said, there is a check valve in the pressure line. You can see it when you look at the lines themselves.

    Hope this helps.
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  4. #29 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Well, my plan was to run it in series with the factory cooler in the rad, but figure putting it after that one would be more beneficial. It's about due for an oil change, so I'll take a look at the lines when I'm doing that, thanks.

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  5. #30 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    A little maintenance today before the next snowfall. I had to use 4wd to get out of an icy parking space earlier this week and the t-case shifter was so stiff I barely got into 4wd. No good, especially with my wife driving it on occasion.

    So today I crawled under it in the driveway to scope things out. Once I got the linkage off the pivot assembly in the middle the problem became very apparent, I couldn't move that pivot assembly. So off it came and into the garage and onto the bench. Sure enough, the ball pivot on the body side of that pivot assembly was completely seized. So I lubed it up and worked it free again. Would have been a free fix except one of the bushings from the linkage shot off into oblivion in my garage during disassembly. So a quick run to Advance and $8 later I had a Dorman bushing assortment in hand to finish the job. Cleaned and lubed the whole shootin' match on the way back in the t-case now shifts like warm butter through all ranges.

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  6. #31 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    So a while ago at work we got a junkyard rear axle for a WK and it surprisingly came with all the control arms still attached and intact instead of torched in half. Since they were headed to the scrap pile I snagged them to see how they matched up as a readily available junkyard upgrade. I got some tubular front lower arms with the 3.73 gear axles I picked up off CL, so I checked these in the rear. The lowers look like they should got right in, but are about a 1/2"-3/4" longer than the ZJ arms. Actually not bad when lifted, anyways. The uppers, OTH, are quite a bit longer than the ZJ arms. I already replaced the uppers with stock type replacements (RockAuto) as they were very crusty. If I install the WK lowers it with the stock uppers I'm concerned with it throwing the pinion angle off. So do I cut the WK uppers in the middle and sleeve them? Or do I try cutting and end off and reweld it? Also, the bushing sleeves look to be just a touch wider, but nothing a little grinding can't fix.

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    Last edited by Yjsaabman717; 02-15-2019 at 08:59 PM.
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  7. #32 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    So I was doing some searching around on something else and came across this thread:

    https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink?url...0&share_type=t

    So that was some good info on lengthing/shortening stock tubular arms. I have a variety of options (see extra stock ZJ arms mentioned above), I have new bushings for stock ZJ arms on hand, the stock WK rear arms, and some tubing I scavenged from something else that should be at least as heavy as the stamped steel arms. At this point I just need to get it all together (some is at work, some is at home) and see what will work best. One the things O will definitely do is cut apart at least one of the stock WK uppers and report on the tubing internal dimensions and wall thickness.

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  8. #33 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Not much going on here right now. Did a tune up last weekend and took it on a ride to go pick up some wheels for the wife's MINI Cooper S. It was definitely due, plug gap was at least double what it should have been and the cap contacts were looking rough. Seems to have gained about 1 mpg, and lost an occasional miss at highway cruise. It also walked through its safety and emissions inspections yesterday. Hooray! It's not too rusty! Lol! Next area of attention is going to be exhaust, though. The cheapo Walker stuff I installed 4 years ago has about had it. Time to figure out how many bends I'm going to need and what muffler I want to run and make a stainless system in 2.5" from the manifold back.

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  9. #34 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Finally found an accessible gas tank skid plate in good shape today! Came off pretty easily, fortunately. (I did have my 28" 1/2" drive ratchet with me to break things loose and to break a bolt or two.) At $20 it was a deal, too.

    I had to run a tap through the forward weld nuts in the unibody to clear out 25 years of crud and rust before I could bolt it on. Now I feel much more comfortable getting this thing out on the trail. I also grabbed a few other odds and ends while I was there. Still need a RF door latch with a working power lock actuator, but scored a LF today.

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  10. #35 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    So I may revise my rocker replacement to come up a little farther and trim the bottom of the doors. Why? Because at least the passenger front is a bit rustier than I care for. I haven't checked the others, but I expect a similar situation. Spring is here, time to go back to driving the BMW, so that's time to start cutting!

    During my junkyard trip yesterday I also came across the original Project Hugs. It was the car that wore this license plate initially around 10 years ago. I saved this 1997 VW Golf from this fate at that point, and it went on to go through five more years and three owners after me, and went over 300,000 total miles. I gave it good run, and now it will give its parts to save others.

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  11. #36 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Okay, I've been watching Dirt Everyday on Motortrend, I need to get this rig offroad. Winter is over, it's out of daily driver duty, time to get to work making a bit more room. Hopefully some good updates coming soon. Right after I put a clutch in the wife's Mini CooperS. Lol! If only I still lived further north where there were places to go right around the corner.

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    Last edited by Yjsaabman717; 04-28-2019 at 11:58 PM.
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  12. #37 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Got a couple hours today to play around with things. Looked over the WK control arms and decided to make the uppers match the lowers. The WK lowers are 1/2" longer than the stock lowers, and I had an extra set of uppers to compare to, so I got to work. After all an extra half inch of wheelbase can't hurt!

    I started by cutting one of them in half, wall thickness is 1/8" on these. I didn't have anything square to sleeve inside them, but I did use some 1/8" angle I had around. Something inside is better than nothing, right? And something 1/8" wall and closed all around will be much stronger than the factory stamped arms. Knocked these out in about 2 hours, and snuck up on the final length of the second one to make sure the two matched. Pretty pleased with the result, and will be nice to add some beef in the arm department when I swap in the 3.73 axles. Who knows when long arms may find their way under this thing, so I'll do what I can for now. This only cost a couple hours and a few bucks in welding supplies.

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  13. #38 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Not much other than a new starter to report. Also made some minor progress on the 3.73 axles.

    Biggest news? I realized this thing had no tow points! Did some research and the factory ones look overly complicated. I've seen some versions of homemade ones that poke through the bumper skin made out of 1/4" plate that I like. Should be pretty cheap to make and can possibly even be used as base plates for a bumper down the road. Time to hit up the scrap yard down the street from work for some material.

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  14. #39 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Spent a little time on projects today. Got the rear axle pretty well stripped down. Still need a couple of outer axle seals for it. Planning on swapping all my brake components over to this axle to keep from having to disconnect the lines and also because they've all been serviced recently. Also decided to give it a quick coat of paint, because why not?

    I also swapped the mounting tabs for the brake cables and ABS sensors from the rear upper arms over to the HD arms I fabbed.

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  15. #40 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Well, looks like the front pump seal puked this evening. Was cruising along, crossed an intersection, glanced in the rearview afterwards and saw smoke billowing out from under the Jeep. Pulled over and checked underneath to see trans fluid dripping off the bottom of the bell bellhousing onto the exhaust. Looks like I caught it pretty quickly as there is only a tiny bit of spray on the back bumper, and it doesn't look like much past the trans crossmember. Figures as I just gave it a good scrubbing last weekend.

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  16. #41 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Told me it failed to post so I resent it, see below...
    Last edited by Yjsaabman717; 07-20-2019 at 06:59 PM.
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  17. #42 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Dragged it home today and got in a little wrench time. Ran into a snag when I could only get one of the t-case side front driveshaft bolts loose due to the condition of the bolt heads. I may just drop the case with the shaft attached at this point. It's just bloody hot and miserable today.

    Since it's down for a bit I decided it's time to dive in and start cutting wheel arches and rockers. Got the trim pulled off the rockers after the issue with the front shaft. Driver side is pretty ugly on the outside, and is the worse of the two on the inside to match. Also took some quick measurements to see how much height I gain in the end. Currently about 17.5" to the pinch weld average on my horribly uneven driveway.

    That's about it for today as it's just bloody hot and awful outside. I will work a bit more tomorrow, but prob not too long. I have some time off next weekend when it won't be so hot, and hopefully it won't rain, either.

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  18. #43 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Initial findings when I dropped the pan to drain it today were not encouraging. About all that's left before dropping everything out is to remove the torque converter bolts and disconnect the cooler lines. Should come out pretty quickly on Thursday. I was just soaked in sweat after about an hour today and that was enough.

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  19. #44 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Trans is out, no obvious issues to cause a sudden leak at the front of the trans. A small wear mark on the outside of the converter snout, but that may be old. It's not anything bad enough to catch a finger nail on, and the bushing looks good inside the trans. At this point it will sit while I figure out what I want to do with it. I've started trolling for a donor XJ to do a 5 speed swap, as it's really what I want. Has to be 1989 or newer, though, for the AX15. None of that light duty Pugeot garbage!

    Rust converter should be here Monday. Fine line tape for marking out the wheel arch cuts is here, as is a can of weld through primer. I'm out of town the next couple of days, but should start cutting Monday.

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  20. #45 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    No turning back, now! Before I can replace the rockers I need to know where they will end, so the cutting began. I have my tablet out in the garage with page 4 of Kraqa's build loaded as a guide. In the end the front looks more involved than the rear with all the structure behind the fender, so I may leave the front a little smaller than than the rear, at least for now. I still need some sheet for the fill panel in the rear arches, but I'd like to get one side cut out to see just how much metal I'm going to need.

    There are definitely some tough spots in the door to get shaped the way you want, like right around where the window channel/regulator bolts on. I'm pretty happy with how it came out, just need to weld it up, now. Took about an hour to get the first door done.

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  21. #46 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    The rocker is mostly cut out. Grabbed a piece of the 2x4 tubing I have to mock up and made some minor adjustments and I think things should be good. I can definitely see where 2x6 is ideal for the extra protection and not having to cut back quite as far. 4" is bare minimum to nest back in against the side of the floor. I need to trim the fender and get it back on to finalize the tubing length. I have the rear arch marked, but not cut, yet. Once I have the length I can clearance the back side of the tubing for the front seatbelt anchor.

    Having the fender off makes me wish I had $10k to spend on this thing right now. (As well as the space to work on it inside.) It's just begging to all be cut out for a taller, cleaner, more open design to accept a coilover. Trying to figure out where to cut and what to leave is tough! Right now the edges and door edge have all been covered in a coat of high zinc weld through etching primer. I can definitely see the added clearance already.

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  22. #47 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Got some more done today on the rear arch. Definitely not as nice as Kraqa's came out, but I don't plan on anything on this heap being that nice, really. Lol! Functional is more my speed, but it should still look pretty good. Having a little trouble at the rear due to the rust. Getting that inner fender worked out far enough is not easy! The rear just isn't making it, but's also missing a chunk, so I'll trim as necessary and add back in. I ended up using a chunk of the outer rocker as the filler panel at the door jamb. I'm not totally sold on this weld through primer, though it had good reviews. I'll be cleaning it off as much as possible before moving forward with more welding. I think I can still get the welder dialed in a little better. The stretched inner arch is tough because it's getting so thin.

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  23. #48 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Score! Today I took a little drive and picked up a 5 speed swap from a 95 XJ! AX15 trans, flywheel, clutch and clutch hydraulics (with a supposed 5k miles on them), pedal cluster, shifter and boot, separator plate, hardware, and the trans side t-case shifter bracket. We'll see how it all lines up, and I'll be sure to document the process of getting it all installed.

    I'll definitely need to pick up a pilot bushing, and will be test fitting the t-case before install. I also hope the starter I just replaced will work, but I won't be surprised if it doesn't.

    The Jeep it came out of definitely got used, and it looked like in mud. The trans was caked in clay. It also apparently wasn't drained before it was removed. Fortunately I have a cargo liner and it kept the mess off all the tan carpet in the trunk of my BMW.

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  24. #49 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Edited post above to reflect the actual year of the donor XJ.

    Did some more research today and still need to pick up a few things. Other than a pilot bushing I also need a correct 1995 XJ 5 speed crank position sensor. Easy enough part to pick up. OTH, it would appear I should pick a new t-case. The 94 ZJ has the np231 with the pilot/bearing support on the input gear. The ax15 does not have that, despite them both having the 23 spline setup. From my research the aw4 used in the XJ does not have that pilot the early 42re has. So I should be able to grab an XJ np231 at the yard and be good to go.

    This is still going to be a serious budget job vs a rebuild of the 42re. I paid $550 for everything I picked up this past weekend. Even with a t-case, pilot bushing, CPS, and even driveshaft mods, I should be under a grand easily. As good as an opportunity as this is to just swap the input gear, rebuild the t-case, and go SYE, my budget doesn't support it. Nor does the cost of a CV rear driveshaft at my lift height. I'm still going to try to recoup a bit by selling off the 1.75 42re I have, but I may hold onto the t-case for a future rebuild/SYE setup.

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  25. #50 Re: Project Hugs Version 4.0 
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    Fenders look awesome. This build just keeps getting better
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