ZMotorSports 2011 JKUR Build Thread

I am new here but thought I would throw up some pictures of my latest Jeep build. It is not real time as I have owned it now for almost two years.

I bought the Jeep with only 3208 miles on the odometer and commenced building my "Dream Jeep". This is my daily driver and weekend wheeler.

On lift just before sitting it down with the 4" BDS Suspension Lift and 35" KM2 tires/ATX Crawl wheels.
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Backed outside the shop after just barely sitting her on the ground with new lift and tires/wheels.
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More to come as I dig through the pictures. Also pictured here is the Warn Rockcrawler bumper/Powerplant combination that I purchased used just to get me by until I could fabricated my own bumpers.

Mike.
 

zmotorsports

Hardcore Gearhead
Supporting Vendor
Location
West Haven, UT
I've posted up quite a bit of work in the projects thread that I've done over the past few weeks but thought I'd post this one here being specific to my 2011 Jeep Wrangler.

It was time to give it a good once over and prepare the ole' girl for the upcoming travel and Jeeping season so I thought I'd give it a full LOF service as well as install my Nemesis lower front shock relocation brackets that have been sitting on the bench for several months.

Jeep racked, tires removed, oil drained and getting ready to make a small modification to the front suspension.
jeep3.jpg

The Mickey Thompson Baja Boss A/T's have sure been a pleasant surprise. These things have an aggressive lug pattern yet are quiet on the road, grip fantastic off-road and actually have performed extremely well on snow-packed winter roads. They are still fairly new but wearing well so far. They began life at 18.5/32nds and are now sitting right at 17/32".
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Next up is the small modification that I have wanted to do since last summer when I rebuilt my shocks. With a little more suspension travel in the front axle @ 10.5" overall travel now, I noticed that my shocks are just barely coming in contact with the frame at full droop against the limiting straps. I have seen people bend shock shafts and damage shocks due to this so before I do any damage I wanted to relocated the bottom of my shocks outboard a little bit before the Jeeping season started. I was going to fabricate some relocation brackets but stumbled across some made for the Dynastrac ProRock44 by Nemesis Off-Road and the were reasonably priced so I figured rather than reinvent the wheel and to make the job go quicker I would purchase these brackets and weld them in place in a relatively short amount of time.


Here is what I started with.
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Here is the small mark that I noticed last year when rebuilding my shocks.
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Nemesis lower shock relocation brackets.
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These are made to be either welded or bolted on so I used a single bolt to mock them into position, then marked where I was going to weld so I could knock the mill scale off the new brackets and the paint off the axle.
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Welded in place and sharp edges radiused and smoothed.
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Painted with some Eastwood Extreme Chassis black.
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The shock centerline is moved outboard approx. 2.5".
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Final shot of the outboard leaning shock.
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Probably the thing I liked most about these shock relocation brackets is the fact that they turn the lower shock mount 90-degrees and will put much less stress on the shock bushing.


Thanks for looking.

Mike
 

zmotorsports

Hardcore Gearhead
Supporting Vendor
Location
West Haven, UT
I have been MIA for a couple of months now due to a health issue.

During late April driving to work one morning I detected a weird noise from under the Jeep. It sounded like an exhaust tick but not a tick.:thinking:

I hadn't been feeling well so it was several weeks before I could tear into it and by the time I actually diagnosed it I realized it was in the rear end. I rebuilt my rear end back in late 2018 when I switched from the 5.38 gears that I had been running for the previous 90k miles to the 4.56 gears in preparation for my LS swap.

I now have just shy of 50k miles on the 4.56 gears and I don't "hot-rod" the Jeep nor abuse it on or off-road but when I opened the rear differential up I was shocked at what I discovered.
jeep1.jpg

Several large chunks of teeth were stuck in the bottom of the housing and to the magnet. Amazingly, there was hardly any shavings in the oil or inside the housing which indicated this had just recently failed. It had been nearly a month since we had it off-road during our San Rafael Swell trip and I really didn't do much extreme wheeling while we were there so I was confused on what could cause this.
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Upon disassembly I found the pinion had failed but it failed well below the surface and deep into the root of the pinion shaft. This is something I hadn't seen before in all the rear ends that I have rebuilt. I have seen teeth sheared off from hard launches back in my racing days and teeth broken off from off-road vehicles as they get the vehicle hopping and then gain traction but this was so far into the core of the shaft.

My son and I were examining it carefully and he noticed that the new 4.56 gear set that I had sitting on the bench had a bit more of a radius at the transition between the bearing surface and the teeth as well as it was much smoother of a radius than the one that failed. I'm not sure if that was the cause or not but also by the way the teeth broke so far below the surface we were wondering if it might be a manufacturing defect such as in the heat treating process. Generally the heat treating doesn't go that deep in order to allow the teeth to have some "give" to them and the hardness is more important at the surface where the contact between the gears is.
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The shim packs were very close but I just wanted to "tweak" the backlash a very small amount so got the drawer full of shims out and then began reassembly.
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Great looking wear pattern and .007" backlash.
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Time to button it up, put some petroleum based gear oil in it and drive it for about 500-800 miles for break-in.
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It took me a while but I finally got about 650-miles on the gears and then drained the oil, pulled the cover, inspected the wear pattern and backlash as well as double checked the torque on the bearing caps before closing it back up and putting some synthetic gear oil in it and run it.
jeep8.jpg

jeep9.jpg

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Thanks for looking.
 

zmotorsports

Hardcore Gearhead
Supporting Vendor
Location
West Haven, UT
While I was breaking in the new gears I had another issue with my fuel trims acting weird. This has been an ongoing issue and I have thought all along it was an ECM issue but then again, those rarely fail.

After doing some data logging and sitting on the couch recovering and deciphering the data I came to the conclusion that it was in fact something with the operating system.

I had a newly remanufactured ECM reconfigured and it finally arrived a few weeks ago. This is the old one removed and ready to box up and ship back.
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Newly remanufactured ECM installed.
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After the initial test drive I thought we could get a little closer on the timing and fuel trims so a couple of tweaks.
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This is a different kind of tuning than I'm used to. In my days, the tuning was done by popping the hood, grabbing the distributor and carburetor tools and going to town on adjusting the carb and timing curves. My how things have changed, no need to even pop the hood anymore. That being said, I am not a tuner. I still just a mechanic but I've learned a couple of things to fine tune timing and MAF calibrations to tweak the tune ever so slightly.
ecm4.jpg

Using various tunes that I had saved and comparing them before any changes has allowed me to creep up on what I now feel is a very consistent and strong tune.
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After multiple test drives and about a week or so of back and forth to work I think I like where it's at. Next month's annual Ouray/Silverado trip with be the test.
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The wife and I did take off last weekend on a few day drives up to the mountains for some mild off-roading to test the tune and I can report that even though I took the laptop with us to make any changes that I didn't feel it necessary as I was happy with the way it performed at all speeds and altitudes, even over 10k feet.
 
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