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4x4tographer

"Oki": 4x4tographer's 2018 Jeep JLUR

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1 hour ago, 4x4tographer said:

Fox 2.0 Performance IFP shocks arrived today for the front and rear. 🤩

 

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Happy Oh Yeah GIF

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Holiday upgrade!

 

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@Yodamom and I took a brief "after work / pre-Christmas" trip out to see the Anderson Mill in the San Domingo Wash just outside of Wickenburg today. Was joined by @Trail Toy and the kids for a nice afternoon!

 

If you've never checked it out - try it! An out & back style trail, you can knock it out in about 2 to 2.5 hours round trip and makes for a great little trip with a lot of mines, scenery, and history.

 

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Edited by 4x4tographer
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Anderson Mill is a very cool little adventure. We got chased out of there by a very angry swarm of bees once...

 

nicolas cage bees GIF

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We had a lot of fun, kids had a blast and we all really enjoyed this run. 😎  Maybe next time continue on down the trail further...  Hint hint, lol!

 

I did spot a wasp nest but it was empty, noticed a few bee's here and there but nothing extreme.

Edited by Trail Toy

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@Yodamom surprised me with a full set of Rock Hard 4x4 LCA skids under the tree for Christmas🎄. 100% all-American beef to help protect my low-hanging brackets. The photos don’t really do them justice, they are substantial. There’s really no other word for them. They’re noticeably thicker than the LCA bracket material itself.

 

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A few shots of the chewed-up front and rear LCA brackets.

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The install was a breeze with a single bolt to pop out and replace. Rock Hard provides some of the thickest washers/shims I’ve ever seen to help center the skid plate around the factor curves of the LCA brackets.

 

Shot of the rear driver LCA at the axle (photo from the side): 

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Shot of the rear driver LCA skid (photo from the rear):

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Here’s the front driver LCA bracket at the axle (photo from the front):

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Front driver skid (shot from the rear):

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Ran into a slight problem with the front passenger LCA bracket at the axle where it butts up against my Metalcloak Front Axle Disconnect skid plate. There’s a little competition for space over the pictured hex bolt. To get it to work the only real choice I see is to grind down the LCA skid on one of the corners a little.

 

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7 minutes ago, theksmith said:

Grinding Fox Tv GIF by The Grinder

like a boss GIF

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So I’ve been interested in joining in on some of the overnight trips some of you guys do, but I’m too big of a wuss to sleep in a tent on the ground. 😆 After reading @theksmith excellent sleeping platform build thread I decided to try to adapt one to my existing drawer system that I built for my JLU.

 

KSmith’s build thread is highly detailed, and my engineering prowess is pretty rudimentary. My version of the sleeping platform is definitely a bit of a hack job with some room for improvement, but here’s where I’ve landed.

 

I really liked KSmith’s removable verticals supports, so I did my best to mimic it. :) Using similar “lift off hinges”, I ran into a little snag where I didn’t have enough room (vertically) on the back of my drawer system to install 2 hinges per side. I opted to go with just 1 per side (they’re fairly beefy) and added a strip of plywood next to each hinge as a sort of support. The thought is that the plywood strips will support the bulk of the weight along this edge. 

 

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Here’s a mock-up of the 2 boards that make up the sleeping area. A contour gauge and a jigsaw helped to shape the board around the center console arm rest.

 

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Some t-nuts and hinges went in to make the platform collapsable. I looked at using a piano hinge for a perfect “fold flat” for storage, but the hinges I found at the local store seems pretty flimsy to me, made of brass. I went for some beefy gate hinges, but realized the error of my ways when I went to fold it flat and the bolt heads at the hinge got in the way. They fold down to about 5 degrees from perfectly flat.

 

I’d really like to get them to fold perfectly flat, so I’m going to have to go the piano hinge route and some low profile bolts or screws with flat/tapered heads.

 

Here’s a photo of the platform “folded”. I won’t be able to hit a trail with it like those as it’ll vibrate it self apart, so I’ll stuff a blanket into the void or something.

 

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And here is the platform fully unfolded.

 

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All in all, its pretty sturdy. To help keep it from moving around (side-to-side) when shifting weight, I added 2 additional “lift off hinges” to the back-edge of the platform and the leading edge of the drawer system. The platform will slide and “lock” into position, preventing any side-to-side tipping when I’m moving about trying to get comfy.

 

Here’s a view from the other side. I really liked KSmith’s idea of leaving the driver side seat available to sit in, change your pants on, whatever! It also makes it a hell of a lot easier to get onto the platform as opposed to trying to climb in from the passenger side. I felt like I was 20 years older trying to navigate myself in and out from that side. :D 

 

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And here’s a view from the tailgate. 

 

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I suppose I might be a little tall (which is funny to say at 5’10”) but my toes and head touch the tailgate and passenger seat. Something I’ll have to get used to. All-in-all, I’m happy with the width of the sleeping area and I don’t feel too cramped laying on it.

 

Best of all, the entire platform just snaps in and out in about 30 seconds. So it’s a breeze to install it on the fly.

 

For the moment I’m going to leave it all unpainted until I’m happy with it, but I’ll eventually hit it with some bedliner rattle cans like I did with the drawer/deck. Overall the coating is holding up pretty well since I built it about a year ago, so I have a few areas to touch up from some abuse.

 

Now to find a sleeping pad and a decent sleeping bag! Looking forward to trying this new system out on the next trip!

Edited by 4x4tographer
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