Thread: Newbie building a 95 zj

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  1. #1 Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    So to start new here and in the Jeep world , bought a 95 zj for 300 with a title , they originally thought it had a bad trans we started at 700 got em down to 3 and it just had a leak and they were adding in park . Turns out fresh filters flush and fluids seemed to be all good on the maiden test drive .
    Anyway started this build here this last summer around July (115-120 degree days here ) so it went slow with work and a newborn .
    As of now Iíve managed to swap a ford 8.8 out back went iron rock long arms in the rear as well . Now onto the front I have iron rock 3 link . Iím on 35Ē tires with 4.5 lift springs they measure out to 5 tho which mixer be a damn Jeep thing .
    I bought a 83 xj for believe it or not 150.00 bucks (no title ) snagged the 231 for my zj but havenít had a chance to do that part of the swap . Iím in no way shape or form a pro jeeper or builder so come into these pics and thread knowing that as Iíll prob have a lot of questions . Iíve had to re do things a few times , like I put the rear arms on upside down ! Haha looked good from my desert background , turns out I was wrong ! Anyway my goal here is to trim the life out of it while still looking like a zj and get down to somewhere around 4Ē on 35ís . Anyway critics welcome and knowledge . Thatís all for now eat shit and merry Christmas
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  2. #2 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Was gonna start adding pics from my cell phone but I guess I’ll have to wait until I get home to the computer . Unless someone can give me some insight , also is there a tapatalk support for this forum ?
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  3. #3 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
    Senior Member Grand Slam West Planner Ted_Z's Avatar
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    Welcome! You'll find lots of information here. MC is not as active of a forum as it used to be as many of the contributors have moved on to other rigs. None the less, if you have questions, shout them out as there are still people around that can help.
    -Ted Z
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    everytime someone makes a bumper with a stinger, God kills 6 baby Koala's.
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  4. #4 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    I ran into a issue today cycling the rear to see how much I need to trim an realized my up travel was limited by the shock bottoming out . If this isn’t a very active site can I get directed into th a forum that can possibly help out
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  5. #5 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
    Senior Member Grand Slam West Planner Ted_Z's Avatar
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    Did you cycle the suspension with or without the springs installed? Shock length is a compromise of up travel and droop. If you get shorter shocks then you'll get less droop.

    That said, you can keep your existing shocks and relocate the mounts to triangulate them. Check this kit out. https://www.claytonoffroad.com/jeep_...t_1993_1998_zj

    Here's a thread I posted a few years ago. http://mallcrawlin.com/forum/showthr...hocks-worth-it
    -Ted Z
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    everytime someone makes a bumper with a stinger, God kills 6 baby Koala's.
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  6. #6 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Welcome! Yes, this forum is on Tapatalk.

    The best way to make room for bigger tires while retaining the look of the ZJ can be found in Kraqa's family wagon build thread. His build overall is beyond over the top, and make us all jealous, but there's lots of useful info for driveway warriors, too! IIRC Godzuka helped him with his fender cut, but it's really the right way to do it. I'll be tackling mine in that fashion in the near future. Its super clean and maintains the factory lines.

    As for your up travel limitation, are the tires still clearing when the shock bottoms out? If so then it may be time to either change the shocks, or the mounting locations. It's ok to limit up travel and to promote droop. To get the most out of your shocks your bumpstops should stop the up travel right before the shock bottoms out. Also, this should be the same point at which the tires are just short of mauling the sheet metal.

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    Last edited by Yjsaabman717; 01-01-2019 at 02:35 PM.
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  7. #7 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
    Senior Member Ken L's Avatar
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    I'd adjust the bump stops to limit the up travel to be just short of when the shock is completely compressed. Bottoming out the shock is one of the quickest ways to wreck them. I'd also make sure that the shock doesn't get overextended. I have pulled a couple apart that way, and now run limit straps to prevent overextending the shocks.

    There is a difference between extreme axle travel and practical axle gravel. If you limit the up travel with bump stops, you will still get more than enough practical travel, and that's the travel you'll be able to use on the trail.

    Welcome to the forum!
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    '96 ZJ with stuff
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  8. #8 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
    Senior Member Grand Slam West Planner Mtn WJ's Avatar
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    I can attest to the damage from over compressing your shocks. I broke my bumpstop this summer and then over compressed my shock and broke the shock and the mount bolt. Fortunately I didnt damage the shock mount - too much anyway. I agree with using bumpstops and limit straps if you need them.
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  9. #9 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken L View Post
    I'd adjust the bump stops to limit the up travel to be just short of when the shock is completely compressed. Bottoming out the shock is one of the quickest ways to wreck them. I'd also make sure that the shock doesn't get overextended. I have pulled a couple apart that way, and now run limit straps to prevent overextending the shocks.

    There is a difference between extreme axle travel and practical axle gravel. If you limit the up travel with bump stops, you will still get more than enough practical travel, and that's the travel you'll be able to use on the trail.

    Welcome to the forum!
    So I need to get some pics because I def have an issue as far as shock bottoming out and using a bump stop I totally agree , prob is I feel like practical travel and what I got isnít the same as far as up goes . Iíll get some measurements as well as far as bump to axle at full bump . Also wanted to add my down travel stops by shock extension . So limit straps are looking like a must . Oh I wanted to add as well at full bump Iím doing all this with the axle equal not one side dropped other tucked . If that makes a difference . Iíll get pictures tonight when Iím
    Off if the winds arenít 35 like yesterday . As of now my axle at full tuck Iím not even hitting the fenders behind the back
    Doors . But anyway I donít wanna bore u guys let me get measurements and pics of all this . Iím itching to get out and hit some rocks see what this girl can and canít do .


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  10. #10 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
    Senior Member Ken L's Avatar
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    I'll get a measurement of the space between my bump stop and the axle tomorrow, but I'd be surprised if it's 4". Most likely only a couple of inches. And I get a metric crap ton of articulation.
    Ken L
    '96 ZJ with stuff
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  11. #11 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken L View Post
    I'll get a measurement of the space between my bump stop and the axle tomorrow, but I'd be surprised if it's 4". Most likely only a couple of inches. And I get a metric crap ton of articulation.
    Thanks Ken I appreciate it . I could def be looking to far into this . Was wondering what bumps u guys are running out back . The stock ones are gone . The mounts are there but not the rubber .


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  12. #12 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ted_Z View Post
    Did you cycle the suspension with or without the springs installed? Shock length is a compromise of up travel and droop. If you get shorter shocks then you'll get less droop.

    That said, you can keep your existing shocks and relocate the mounts to triangulate them. Check this kit out. https://www.claytonoffroad.com/jeep_...t_1993_1998_zj

    Here's a thread I posted a few years ago. http://mallcrawlin.com/forum/showthr...hocks-worth-it
    Thanks for the link to the triangulated shock thread ted


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  13. #13 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Another quick question when u guys are stretching your zj front ends (wannna gain an inch ) what are you doing for the top coil spring mount ? Do you move it or leave it ?


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  14. #14 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Usually this depends on how tall of a coil you're running. The taller coil gives you a little bit more room to stretch(slightly) without modifying the upper or lower mounts.
    I would think a 4.5" lift coil spring could give you about 3/4"-1" of room to stretch before your coils start rubbing on your bumpstop cup.
    I'm stretched about 3 inches, but the coil mount on my 60 sits further back.

    MAC
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  15. #15 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Great question and answer as the firewall, etc behind the front tires is not exactly easy to move. My pinch welds have been hammered flat (always helpful), and adding some room behind the headlights is next on the agenda, and also very helpful when trying to move the axle forward.

    Another question (and also pertinent to the moving the axle forward discussion), what about the track bar? If retaining the ball joint style upper, that obviously adapts, but the lower bushing would still be tweaked. Change to a double bushing style and move the mount forward when installing?

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  16. #16 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yjsaabman717 View Post
    Great question and answer as the firewall, etc behind the front tires is not exactly easy to move. My pinch welds have been hammered flat (always helpful), and adding some room behind the headlights is next on the agenda, and also very helpful when trying to move the axle forward.

    Another question (and also pertinent to the moving the axle forward discussion), what about the track bar? If retaining the ball joint style upper, that obviously adapts, but the lower bushing would still be tweaked. Change to a double bushing style and move the mount forward when installing?

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    Very knowledgeable yj and thanks for the continued help soo my bad on not being thorough on the question as to what I all have . Iím off tomorrow and finally gonna dig into this and get pics as well. Iím gonna attach a pic of the trac bar I got (not installed ) and maybe u guys can tell me if itís double sheer .
    Pinch weld has been relief cut and hammered flat prob not the prettiest but yeah . Iím gonna get really cut happy tomorrow lol .
    Also Iím gonna take out a lot of stuff that was underneath the front stock bumper area on the sides out cut all that extra bulk stuff out anyway .
    Hereís the track bar and hereís the spring perches I was thinking of running so that I can off set the spring on the bottom with the axle pushed forward . Thanks guys


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  17. #17 Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAC_ZJ View Post
    Usually this depends on how tall of a coil you're running. The taller coil gives you a little bit more room to stretch(slightly) without modifying the upper or lower mounts.
    I would think a 4.5" lift coil spring could give you about 3/4"-1" of room to stretch before your coils start rubbing on your bumpstop cup.
    I'm stretched about 3 inches, but the coil mount on my 60 sits further back.

    MAC
    Gotcha Iím running iron rock long arms . Well they are on it hasnít even been used yet unfortunately. But yeah my end goal would def love to be around 3.5-4Ē of lift or static height . As Iím now so happy with the tall stance and how too heavy these are . Rode in my buddyís and it just felt so in stable and unpredictable body roll for days . I do know I have to trim a lot but Iím not scared to have a cutting party lol as far as the coil rubbing my post above I attached a picture of some coil perches . Curious on everyoneís thoughts


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    Last edited by Parker_; 01-03-2019 at 09:15 PM.
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  18. #18 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Pinch weld cut and bent over , Iíve since added extended brake lines . Oh here a pic of that xj I snagged too has a 231 Iíll be snagging and some axles Iím sure someone could use . It runs and drives apart from the flats lol


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  19. #19 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Just trying to help you and gain some knowledge myself, man! Also digging the Baja Bug in the XJ pic! I'm still a ways off from long arms, but have a similar goal when it comes to overall lift and tire size. Also a realative newb to to building ZJs. Had what was really a mild YJ, but tons of fun, and since starting a family a ZJ was a great budget entry back into wheeling.

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  20. #20 Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yjsaabman717 View Post
    Just trying to help you and gain some knowledge myself, man! Also digging the Baja Bug in the XJ pic! I'm still a ways off from long arms, but have a similar goal when it comes to overall lift and tire size. Also a realative newb to to building ZJs. Had what was really a mild YJ, but tons of fun, and since starting a family a ZJ was a great budget entry back into wheeling.

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    Thanks man , that bug was a gift from my father in law itís a 67 basically a project I havenít got to yet . The zj was my first choice as well due to a growing family and budget . I like to hunt and got really tired of scratching up my Duramax and the rough ride that comes with a 2500 in the dirt as well so I just felt like the zj was a overall great universal application. This thing would be so much farther along if I didnít have a 9 month old itís tough balancing work family time and me (zj) garage time to keep everyone happy .
    I found another build thread but unfortunately he doesnít go into super depth on the little parts Iím curious about . Apart from him having 37ís and 1 tons this is really the dream set up to me


    Also would like to add Iím not against 37ís or tons itís just not something I have or am I there yet in my build . Iím def sure Iíll get there
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  21. #21 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    I feel you, man. My daughter is 3, I have a 1982 VW Rabbit convertible in the garage that has been off the road longer than I've been with my wife, and her 2008 GTI has been down for over 2 months after timing chain and oil pressure issues. Just glad my ZJ is functioning on a BB and some 32s to get one of us to work and back at the moment.

    Keep pushing forward on your ZJ. While the time can be hard to find, you're asking good questions to get you where you need to be with it. Don't let it become the shelf my Rabbit has become in my garage! LOL!

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  22. #22 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    I wish there was an easy way to move the steering box forward. I have pushed the axle as far forward as I can with the track bar just clearing the pitman arm. I think I need to go forward a little more to clear the inner fender.
    '94 ZJ Rescued from the crusher. locked, clocked, stretched, 4:56, 5 spd. Now getting hp44 and 9 inch, underdrive and 241c. 3 link F & R. 37's
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  23. #23 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCWildman View Post
    I wish there was an easy way to move the steering box forward. I have pushed the axle as far forward as I can with the track bar just clearing the pitman arm. I think I need to go forward a little more to clear the inner fender.
    Full hydro! Lol!

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  24. #24 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCWildman View Post
    I wish there was an easy way to move the steering box forward. I have pushed the axle as far forward as I can with the track bar just clearing the pitman arm. I think I need to go forward a little more to clear the inner fender.
    So I started having a cutting party today lol mounted the electric fan got rid of the stock
    Intake (not sure if this is gonna be sufficient enough ) and got new headlights . Freed up some room inside the motor bay and got rid of some excess on the outside . Taking a lunch break


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  25. #25 Re: Newbie building a 95 zj 
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    Also started mounting some wiring and a switch bank . Iím not a electrician nor claim
    To be and I still gotta clean it all up but u get the basic idea


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