Ok, so I've been doing tons of research so that I can work out a good approach to building up my jeep over the next few years. I want to get my ideas down so that I do things right and in the correct order rather than just throwing my money at a mod and later regretting it or wanting to change it.
I've put 15,000 ks on my car since I bought it in November of last year. I use it for work, most of our family errands and getting out of the city every fortnight or so.
Given all that, the car has to be safe and legal. So within those limits I want to build the most capable wj I can.
I'm not into touring, just getting out in Victoria on weekends. I've done a couple of driver training courses, so with a bit more experience on the tracks, I want a car that can take me anywhere that a lesser driver in a more highly built rig can go.
This build plan is probably going to be fairly fluid for a while. As I gain more knowledge and receive advice, i'm sure i'll make plenty of changes and edits. Mods will be listed in order of attack and i'll be trying to get prices and sources for the items.
If anyone has any advice at all, please let me have it. Whether it's better products, a change in build order or you just flat out think i'm going in the wrong direction, i'm all ears and happy to take criticism. Better to know i'm doing something wrong now than after I've hacked into my car!
* Steering Stabiliser - Currently still on stock. I figure i'm best off getting this sorted early as it'll help toughen my wj when I take it out in it's current state and will be essential when I lift further.
* Snorkel - Better to have a snorkel and not need it than to need one but not have it so i'd like this sorted early. I'm only aware of the Airflow and Safari models. The airflow is ugly, but with a price difference of $300 odd I can't be that picky.
* Stereo Head Unit - This will happen at some convenient point, but i'm tipping it'll be sooner rather than later as i'm getting sick of using that bloody tape with the cable that I have to plug into my phone whenever I want to listen to music!
* Lift - Had a BIG discussion about lifting the WJ here
. Thanks to all for their valuable input.
What I got out of it was that I believe I can get away with a 2.5 - 3" lift. Now, you may have noticed that my post BB height is 505mm which is pretty much stock height at new. So obviously my springs are totally shagged and sitting 2" too low. The post lift height i'd be after is 575 - 580mm and there's a couple of ways to go about this.
One is to go with the heavy duty OME springs. The lift i'll get varies depending on who you speak to, but to get 3" i'll need to add 2" spacers cut down to my desired height.
- I hear nothing but good reports about the OMEs and the heavy duty versions will be essential when I add front and rear bars.
- I can complete the lift in stages. Install the springs, see how she handles, iron out death wobbles or other nasties without too much trouble and then add the spacers at a later date and again clean up any problems that arise.
- Once I've added the bars and had a bit of droop, I can get new spacers cut to the exact height I want to compensate for the bars.
- I have to use spacers. While I've found my spacers to be fine, they have to be unpopular for a reason. I've heard they limit travel where full length springs won't and people (and authorities) have safety issues with them. If they're cut down to maybe an inch or so, I think the safety issues are not such a worry as the coil retaining spigot on the spring mount can still do it's job.
- While they are legal in vic, I still don't like the idea of them attracting attention from authorities. If they're illegal in other states, whats to say vic won't amend it's laws and make my car illegal.
There are other brands which make 3" springs that I have to look into. If I found some that were heavy duty like the OME i'd be sold, if I could source them locally i'd be doubly sold.
Shocks: I have OMEs which the previous owner installed a couple of years ago. I need to look into whether these will have the appropriate extension.
* Roof rack and driving lights - I currently have an ali nudge bar with a couple of big HIDs. The bar reduces my approach angle and covers the grill, which is the iconic design feature of every jeep and should always be visible imo. It'll be a shame to lose the lights, but the car will look much better with an led bar mounted on the roof. The rack is needed to carry the spare. I'm sure i'll find a use for it once I get a rear tyre carrier and a kid or two.
* Tyres and Wheels - I'd love some black steelies, but may resort to painting my stock 17s. If I get new wheels it gives me the option to choose my size so may go 16 or even 15" and need to look into changed track width. I think i'd be looking at fairly aggressive ATs at 31.5 - 32 inches.
* Rear Bar with Tyre Carrier - I'm looking at fabbing my own bar based on plans by Flatland
. I think i'll tackle the rear bar first as I desperately want to stop having to hoist the spare onto the roof whenever I go wheeling.
* Front Bar and Winch - Again from flatland at this stage. I'd really like a tube design but haven't been able to find plans and don't want the additional challenge of designing my own.
* I'd love a new exhaust, but that's a real luxury
* An awning sounds good. May become more needed once kids arrive.