Well, I've never started one of these build threads or own jeep update threads in the 12 years that I've owned a Jeep. So, I figured since this is such a well rounded and actually friendly/ helpful community I would take the time and share for anyone who cares
Background: I bought my first Jeep in 2003 when a buddy of mines dad bought a 2000 TJ Sahara and we got to take it out and play. It was from that moment I knew my days behind the wheel of American Muscle Cars were limited and I wanted to be behind the wheel of my own Jeep. Well, in June 2003 I sold my 1991 Mustang LX Coupe and purchased a 1997 Jeep Wrangler Sport... It was from that moment on I fell into the rabbit hole...
...Fast forward to March 6, 2015...
I was tired of my 97 and instead of taring it down and rebuilding it I wanted to sell it and start over with a stock TJ or LJ (I do partly wish I had waited to find a LJ)... So, on March 6th I found myself waking up early driving to a local stealership to hand them a check for a 2004 Jeep TJ Rubicon with only 56,300 miles, one owner, and totally stock. I always wanted a Rubicon and finally found one with low miles and totally virgin! The previous owner was an elderly owner who sold it to get a Volvo. Her loss is my gain... and see the old lady I know it was babied
The day I brought her home
Once getting her home I quickly got rid of the milk jugs on the front bumper and started planning her path. I always wanted 35's on my 97 and was limited by the D35 rear and didn't really want to invest into building it up so I stuck to 33's and 4:10 gears. With this and the D44's (understanding that the axle tubes are still a weak point) I am really thinking of putting her on 35's. The only limiting factor I have about going to 35's is I want this jeep to be able to drive 3,500 miles round trip to AZ, CA, CO, and UT to wheel and then back home to southeast Texas. I don't want to lose highway drive-ability and don't want to make it a trailer queen. So, 35's or 33's will have to wait.
But while I couldn't decide on a lift or tires I did know I wanted a tummy tuck and get about an inch more clearance under the gas tank. So... in went the Savvy UAM and GTS.
The UAM required me relocating the locker pumps so I moved them to the tray in the engine compartment under the hood.
The best thing was that it took care of the slight leak I had in the rear locker pump hose since I ran new hose front and rear
I also really like the look of low profile or flush mount rear LED lights but wasn't really wanting to cut the tub on such a virgin Jeep (just yet) so I installed a pair of Savvy LED rear tail lights.
So installing all this I just had fun driving her around until I got my summer vacation plans together. I realized I am going to spend some time in Colorado and knew that being there Mountain Biking I am going to be tempted to wheels the Jeep on some easy trails. Knowing this I installed a new front bumper and winch that was originally planed for install down the road, I just moved the time table up. And, so went the install of a Savvy front bumper and a Warn M8000 winch.
Forgot to also mention... I also scored a set of factory 1/2 doors from a local guy for $300.00 complete with soft uppers. Eventually I'd like to get them painted silver to match the Jeep and fiberglass uppers. The uppers that came with the doors were spice colored so I grabbed some fabric paint and painted them black to match my soft top and hardtop.
I also pulled the hard top when the weather warmed up and put the soft top on for the summer and my trip to Colorado.
And, almost forgot, to help compensate for the front end sag with the added weight of the winch I installed a set of Moog CC782 front coils (ZJ V8 coils).
That's about it. I am headed out to Colorado and will update this when I get back with hopefully some awesome shots of her stretching her legs on the trails.