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theksmith

Late to the Party: theksmith's 2016 JK Unlimited Rubicon

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Posted (edited)

continuing to address some small cosmetic issues, i tinted the sides of the factory rear tail-light housings.

 

before:

 

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after:

 

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i hadn't found any aftermarket tails that i'm excited about, so i'm sticking with OEM for now but i just wanted to clean up their look a bit. from any distance at all, that red side panel now just blends into the rest of the black housing.

 

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i upgraded to some rather bright LED bulbs in the rear a while back, so the sides still light up decently even with the tint. here's just the running lights on after tinting:

 

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the process i used was:

 

  1. taped off everything but the side lens and then lightly sanded with a 400 grit sponge
  2. cleaned the surface with rubbing alcohol
  3. sprayed 3 medium to heavy coats of VHT Nightshades to tint, letting it dry a few hours between each coat
  4. lightly sanded the final coat with #0000 steel wool
  5. cleaned with rubbing alcohol again
  6. finished with one heavy coat of Dupli-Color clear coat (gloss topcoat)

 

i ended up with just a tiny bit of orange-peel, but i think it's fine considering there's going to be desert pinstriping soon as i go wheeling again! to get a perfectly smooth gloss finish with the Nightshades i've heard you need to wet-sand between coats with something around 4,000 grit then do a couple clear coats and buff/polish those.

 

 

i'm using these high wattage red 3157 LED bulbs for the brake and running lights. LED bulbs here do require standard load resistors in the JK - both to prevent a fast turn signal and to fix the bulb-out warning.

 

the resistors get extremely hot when used on a constantly-lit circuit like this (versus an intermittent turn signal-only bulb). i didn't want to mount them directly to the housings and risk melting the plastic. so, i riveted the resistors to little aluminum plates and then riveted those plates onto existing tabs at the back of the housings.

 

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i also installed very bright JDM 50w 3156 LED bulbs some time ago for backup lights. FYI, that circuit does not not require load resistors.

 

 

Edited by theksmith

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  • Wow 2

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Whoa K, 90K?! That's more than half the miles on my junk already

keanu reeves wow GIF

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DAMN SON!

 

what % are on dirt do you think 30-40?

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20 hours ago, mesach said:

DAMN SON!

 

what % are on dirt do you think 30-40?

 

i'd say 30-40% are "recreation miles", i.e. trails, going to/from a trail, or otherwise on some sort of overland/exploratory trip!

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those new extended front brake lines turned into their own little project...

 

i put a slight twist in them when installing in order to direct them in a way that was clear from getting caught in the coil springs and shocks, but they ended up rubbing the tires at full lock. 

 

so i ordered these handy dandy Teraflex brake line anchors for JK's. note they also have a longer universal version.

 

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to install those i had to loosen the lines to rotate the twist back out, which meant i needed to bleed them again (yay for the speed bleeders)!

 

next i drove out to a wash to do a flex test and found that my new routing with the Teraflex anchors was causing the lines to be pulled a little tight on full droop. i needed to rotate the anchors to point upwards more.

 

i finally ended up installing them on the outside of the existing nut and adding a second nut just to hold the anchors on. this allowed them to be angled up high enough, but not hit the shock body on full compression.

 

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Edited by theksmith

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Gadget did good on the Elvis run this weekend with no new carnage! trip report here...

 

thanks to Sarah (@kaspily) these great photos, especially this one of Gadget twerking:

 

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and thanks to @dzJeepChic for this one too:

 

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Edited by theksmith
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