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Project Need More Doors gets a new engine, aka 4.3runner

Ghetto Fab.

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This is a thread I started on pirate covering my 4.3 engine swap into my 4runner creation. All the pics are saved on another site so they should all transfer over. The swap is now done and legal.

Linky to old thread on the body swap I did prior to this: http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/toyot...r-project.html I'll most likely move that thread over also at some point.

So I finally got the body swap done and everything was working out great! Even got the family out in it a few times up in the mountains last summer!
20170519_142934_800x600.jpg

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I even worked on some other little projects like a center console made out of an ammo can. Cupholders front and rear!
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It worked well and was actually really comfortable to drive, at least in the winter with no one else in it. Add in my wife and kiddo, summer heat, and one really noisy trans on the highway and it became a bear! I really wanted to link the front to help get rid of some of the bumpsteer and make this thing drive better, but i also knew I'd need to do an engine swap first if I was going to do one and get that past the ref.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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I mentioned to a friend the I was looking for a 4.3 to swap into my 4runner project and about a week later he found one for cheap. It was a 1999 GMC Jmmy that had been in an accident and the kid sat on it for two years and finally wanted it gone. I went and picked it up June 2017. The kid had to air up the tires to get it out of the garage, but it fired up and ran great. No check engine light and the trans seemed to work great. I was able to drive it on the trailer before the tires went flat again.
20170529_105819_800x600.jpg

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Got it home, aired up the tires, and drove it around the block. Perfect!

The runner got to meet its new heart transplant victim. Even the colors matched!
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Into the shop it went.
20170529_150301_800x600.jpg


Sorry this isn't going to be fast paced build. I've only really found the time to post today since my wife is gone for a wedding this weekend and I'm at home watching a 3yr old that is sick and currently napping. I'll update more tonight and tomorrow to bring this thread up to date.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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One of the big questions everyone has asked about this swap is "why not an LS?".

The answer, "I live in california and its gotta pass the ref.". I really wanted a V8, but an E-rod type setup is outta the budget, and anything factory is hard to get past. I looked at doing an LS based motor, but can't afford a real LS, and the truck motors won't fit without a bodylift. On top of that the car motors have cats right off the exhaust manifolds that make packaging impossible. I really liked the 1uz motors, but same issue with cat packaging. Which left a 3.4 vs 4.3L debate.

Both good motors. Unfortunately the cost of buying a complete toyota vehicle, even if it doesn't run, in california was just too high. If you look a bit astro vans, blazers, and s10s with the 4.3 can be had pretty cheap. I bought a whole vehicle that ran great, drove on to the trailer and around the block for $550. So far the only downside I've seen with the 4.3 has been the lack of aluminum heads for it.

I pulled the donor out over summer while still getting in a few family trips.
20170724_204153_800x600.jpg


I then made the decision to rebuild the motor. In hindsight I really didn't need to, but I like pulling things apart and making sure they are in good condition when I'm doing a swap like this. I would hate to get done with a swap and run into a rod knock or blown headgaskets shortly after getting it running.
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I was even able to get the boy in on some of it!
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And painted it so it looks pretty.
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Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Got the AA t-case adapter kit to mate the 4l60E to the toyota dual cases. I'm just running stock gears in both cases at this point, which should be more than enough with the increased low rpm torque and auto trans. I'm really looking forward to this on the trail!

The AA kit has you swap the out put shaft out and that requires an almost complete teardown of the trans. I've gone through some manual trans but never an automatic. Watched a few youtube vids so now I'm an expert and dove in.

Pulled this mess apart.
20171030_204752_800x600.jpg


Hope I can get it back together!
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And done, mated up to the t-cases to make sure it all works.
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I didn't do a full rebuild of the trans as everything seemed pretty good. I did replace the sun shell as mine was starting to show wear on the splines, as well as installing a trans-go shift kit, replacing a worn out valve body seperater plate, and replacing the plastic servo pistons. Hopefully this thing will last a while. Hopefully I didn't mess up putting it back together!

For anyone wondering, from bell housing to the back of the t-case adapter is 2" longer than a w56 trans. Cool, but I'm still going to have to mod the triple stick setup to work in the same spot.
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Time to get things in for a test fit. I can't swing all this in there at once. I had to get the trans and t-cases up in there first then drop the motor in. I used my gantry crane to lift the bellhousing up and the floor jack lift the rest, except I couldn't lift it all the way up. So I made an adapter for the jack to lift it the rest of the way. It was a lot less sketchy than stacking blocks on the jack!
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I had previously tried a FROR t-case style mount on the 4cyl, but decided that it transferred too much vibration to the vehicle and pulled it off. I still had all the stuff and the mounts welded onto the frame so I modified it and will use that for now to support the back of the trans. Its good enough to get this thing through the ref. Once that's done I'll move the exhaust where it should go and build a proper subframe/skid/link mounts.

At this point I dropped the motor in and mated it to the drivetrain.
20171222_205214_800x600.jpg


Made some motor mounts. It always cracks me up reading through engine swap threads and people are always stressing over what mounts to buy. Just make them, however you need to get whatever you want to fit in whatever you have. You can fab a bumpers, sliders, even suspension stuff, but can't make a motor mount?
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Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Trying to work on this build thread since Pirate is so slow now.

Got the motor in. It fits nice!
20171222-205214-800x600.jpg


I'm trying to see if I can get pictures to work again.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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With the engine trans and t-cases set in place I could start fabricating the frame side of the engine mounts. I also finally finished welding and bracing the front shock hoops.
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I pulled the motor back out and painted things.
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Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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This seems to be about the best I have pic wise.
20180918-210559-800-x-600.jpg


It basically just cradles the entire radiator and uses the stock mounting holes in the core support. The top clamps on. I should redesign it, but its functional for now.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Early on I made this adapter to adapt the toyota gauge temp sensor to the 4.3 block. I'm not sure it will work well as the sensor is no longer in the coolant flow, but set back a ways. I couldn't come up with a better way to do it though. I'm keeping all of the toyota gauges.
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I mounted it in the pass side head as the drivers side has the ecu temp sensor. I later realized this wasn't going to work either as the engine oil dipstick gets in the way. It got moved up to the unused port in the intake by the t-stat.
20180216-204442.jpg


You get the idea though.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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The hardest part of this whole conversion has been the fuel lines and evap line. Having done one now, if I had a 3.0 I would try to use as much of the stock fuel system on the chassis as I could. It took me a few months of head scratching to figure out a good way to route everything and I'm still not entirely happy with it.

The trouble starts with the 4.3 fuel line connections. They are a common but hard to reproduce 0-ring flare connection. I didn't want to buy an expensive tool for two connections. I could have adapted that to AN fittings, but I like using hose barb style connections for ease of field repair and I've never had an issue with them. Also I do not like to run miles of rubber hose when doing conversions. For the sake of reliability and safety I try to use as much hardline as possible and short segments of rubber hose where flex is needed.

I found Dorman makes these 18" long sections of already flared tubing as repair pieces. I used them as my hardlines to get from the intake manifold fuel connections down to the pass side of the bellhousing. From there the lines use rubber hose to jump to the frame rail.
20180116-202425-800x600.jpg


A really bad pic. You can just barely see the lines I made behind the distributor.
20180116-203843.jpg


On the frame rail everything went back to hardine. I mounted a 3.0 filter in about the same spot as it should have been stock and bent up some new lines. I'm trying to keep everything up high on the frame rails to hopefully make future subframe install easier.
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The evap line was another mystery. I eventually ran it pretty much how the stock 3.0 system is handled. Stock it routes somewhat up next to or in the trans tunnel all the way back to the fuel tank. From there I'm just running a hose back to the blazer evap cannister that is mounted in the back.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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I was waiting on funding for parts at one point so I decided to make the rear driveshaft since I had all the parts. I acquired some 2.375 x .188 dom tubing at work to make them out of. It seems overkill, hopefully they don't explode at speed.

Machined down the ends to fit the tubing.
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Cut tube and then trued the ends and beveled in the lathe.
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Stuck it together and trued it up as best I could.
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Weldered up.
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Complete minus paint.
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Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Well I totally failed on looking at the trans pan. I made a mental note of it, got sidetracked by something else last night and then started working on the tow rig again. I'll try tonight.

One of the first things I tackled was the exhaust. Early Toyota's are hard to swap I feel because the exhaust on newer motors is always on the pass side. In california, they also want to see the stock manifolds used, the specific cat that came with that motor and the cat location has to be in about the same spot. When I set the motor location I actually put the manifolds and the stock blazer exhaust on the motor all the way to the cat to make sure it fit, then I locked it in by building the motor mounts.

I have no body lift. I do not want a bodylift and I still don't understand why one is needed, espicially if your not in california.

I was able to use the stock exhaust manifolds and the complete downpipe on the pass side all the way to the cat. Its tight, but it all fits and honestly I could keep it this way if I wanted to. After its through the ref and smogged I'll move it all over to the pass side and do a much cleaner job of it. For now, this was the least work to get something driveable.

Downpipe on drivers side:
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Downpipe on pass side:
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Kitty cat stuffed next to my t-cases.
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Crossover after the cat. Also showing my temporary t-case support.
20181209-204622-800-X600.jpg


Cheapo muffler, hopefully its quiet. I want a quiet truck!
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And lastly, finished driveshaft installed.
20181209-204811-800-X600.jpg


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Trans pan hangs down about 2.5".
20181212-204647-800x600.jpg


I'm debating whether or not to put a 2wd oil pan on the engine. The 4wd pan hangs about 1.5" lower than the trans pan, the 2wd oil pan should be flush. With a 2wd pan though I might not be able to run the exhaust crossover under the engine though. I have some time but, I would prefer to put a different pan on while there is no oil in the engine.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Shortly after getting the motor in chassis I was able to knock out the throttle cable. I used the 4.3 engine cable mounting bracket, added a tab, and then used the 4runner throttle cable. Using the 4.3 bracket allows me the ability to use the blazers cruise control in the future if I can figure out how to integrate the controls.
20180219-204109-800x600.jpg


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Here is a good one that had me shaking my head for awhile. So to get past the california ref you need to keep all the original smog equipment. When he inspects the vehicle he will also be looking at the readiness monitors on obdII vehicles. When the monitors have all passed their respective tests then you know that the systems are complete and functioning correctly.

I'm using the stock 4runner fuel tank because it fits and a tank is a tank, but I needed to use the blazer evap system to pass the ref. I mounted the evap canister behind the fuel tank and above the rear axle.
20181209-204906-800-X600.jpg


One of the interesting things about the evap monitor tests is that the computer needs to know how much fuel is in the tank. It won't run the test with more than 3/4 tank or less than 1/4 tank, and you can't fool it into thinking its always a half tank as it wants to see the fuel level drop over 200 miles. Of course the 4runner fuel sender and the blazer fuel sender are completly different readings. My only solution to the problem that I could come up with easily, was to install another fuel level sending unit specifically for the ECU. One runs the dash gauge the other goes to the ECU.

I was able to buy a whole fuel pump module with level sender off of amazon or ebay for $25, cheaper than I could buy the sending unit. I wouldn't trust it to run the truck for long, but all I really need is the level sending unit. Oddly enough, the pump is almost a spot on match for the 4runner pump so I'll keep the new cheapo one as a spare.

Blazer fuel level sending unit adapted to the 4runner pump module.
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Pump comparison:
20180912-210131-600x800.jpg


So that's the easy part. The hard part is trying to get the wiring out of the tank somehow. I've used this trick in the past on my buggy's in tank fuel pump so hopefully it will work for this too.

Stepped washers made out of PTFE, should be fuel safe.
20181112-203522-800-X600.jpg


Drill two holes in the 4runner sending unit and use the washers to insulate and seal the holes.
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Add nuts and bolts. I now have studs sticking up I can attach wires too.
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Inside the tank.
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Made a bit of a wiring harness before I put the tank back into place for hopefully the last time.
20181114-204722-600-X800.jpg


So hopefully the evap system monitors work correctly now, no check engine lights, the ref is happy and I get to keep my stock 4runner fuel gauge.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Made an ECU mount.
20181107-204737-800-X600.jpg


Upper radiator hose figured out, at least for now.
20181114-203900-800-X600.jpg


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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I had a really hard time with how to package the coolers to keep everything cool. I could have ditched the AC system, but now that I'm older I really want that. Crossing the valley in 110* heat to get to the mountains sucks during the summer! Also, having the AC will make me want to drive this to work more in the summer.

The one down side of that cheap speedway radiator is that it has no provisions for trans cooling. Not the end of the world and at least the trans cooler can't leak into the radiator, but one more thing to package.

I did some measuring and figured out how to stuff the largest trans cooler I could fit and a power steering cooler and keep the AC condenser. Hopefully I have enough airflow to make this all work!
20181024-204358-800-X600.jpg


I plumbed the trans cooler with hardlines down to the frame and back toward the motor where I'll use rubber hose to jump from the frame to the motor.
20181201-202002-600x800.jpg


I had to cut off the center mount on the plastic grill, but the rest fits and clears all the plumbing nicely.
20181025-204635-800-X600.jpg


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Its been awhile and I've got it through the referee process now so I'm trying to update with all that's happened in between. I have to remember how to resize and post pics again.

I never posted pics of the trans tunnel mods or shifter install. I basically just filled in the old manual trans shifter hole with a piece of sheetmetal. The t-case tripple sticks wind up being pushed about 1.5" rearward with the swap, but luckily line up better with the hole and previous shift boot location. So that all worked out really well.
20181128-203942.jpg

I had to figure out a location for the trans shifter next. I choose a Lokar shifter mostly because the Winters style shifters don't work well with toyota t-case shifter locations. The many B+M shifters seem like junk and the Lokar can at least imitate the manual trans shifter and blend into the interior better. Test fitting. Has to clear the t-case shifters and not ram my hand into the radio. I had to put the carpet, seats and center console back in for this.
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Mounted the shifter.
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Painted red. I wound up later adding some bracing underneath this piece to help with the sheetmetal flexing when shifting.
20181212-204554.jpg

And got the cable mounted on the trans.
20181209-204515.jpg

Trying to get more updates coming. Our computer at home took a shit so I'm doing this all at work in my free time.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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With most of the mechanical and plumbing work done I turned my attention to wiring. I did the usual and modified the factory wiring that came with the jimmy. I find the hardest part with any of these fuel injected engine swaps is not so much wiring the engine or trans, but how to integrate the power distribution from the battery to the engine harness, while still keeping the body systems intact. It takes a bit of time planning it out and pouring over wiring diagrams. Unfortunately I don't have a lot of pics of this process as its a pretty big mental time suck with really nothing to show for it.

Stock harness that got modified:


The engine harness wound up being too long so I shortened it by repinning it all at the ECU.




Under the dash where the factory toyota ECU was became a junction of sorts between body systems and the rear O2s, evap and fuel tank sensors, and the ECU that is now under the hood. Several new connectors were installed here, of course I have no pics of this finished.
More of a mess:


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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Now that wiring was done things started to come alive.
Apparently it wants to hit back door!
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Added fluids and fuel.
20190407-204929.jpg

Has fuel pressure!
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And it took me forever to get it to run. I knew I had to delete the VATS security system, but I thought it would at least start and run for few seconds, or at least thats what I had been told. I was smelling fuel so I started looking at the spider injection system and sure enough a few were leaking.
20190413-212345.jpg

So that got upgraded to the new AC delco replacement multi port injection spider system. Still no change. It would fire a couple times then nothing. I decided the next logical step would be to try without the VATS system. Used HPtuners from work and removed the VATS and changed the gear ratio and tire size.
20190502-201023.jpg

And that fixed everything. Engine runs great! Actually got a chance to move it out of the shop for the first time in over a year and clean it up.
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I put the interior all back together to get it ready for road trials.
20190527-210339.jpg

Somewhat finished shot of the engine bay.
20190527-210405.jpg

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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So now I started driving it. This thing hasn't been registered since 2016 so that made it a bit more complicated. I'd let it run for awhile, took a couple short drives around the block, then went for longer drives to get fuel and out on some back roads. All the time I'm looking for leaks or to make sure that hoses and wiring isn't chaffing or getting too hot and melting. Pretty much looking for any problems. I really didn't find any issues, except for one, the trans just didn't feel right and wasn't shifting correctly. The 1-2 shift was fine, but I'd have to really run the motor up and then back all the way off to get 3rd to engage, 4th seemed ok. I drove it after the kids went to bad a few nights but knew it wasn't right. I did some rpm, wheel and gearing calcs to see what rpms I should see at say 60mph and it was way off. I had taken the trans apart to install the new output shaft and I must have done something wrong.

I started by pulling the pan and the valve body. I did have all the check balls in the right place and couldn't find anything wrong. I wish I had pulled that valve body gasket off the trans.
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So I pulled the trans back out.
yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7
I decided that this time instead of just sticking all the old clutches back in, I'd instead try to do a much better job of actually rebuilding it and ensuring that it was in as good of shape as I could reasonably get it. I found a really good video series on youtube about rebuilding the 4L60 transmissions and ordered up a rebuild kit. It is surprisingly easy to rebuild one of these transmissions, you really just need to be very aware of the nuances in the way the parts fit together. I honestly really enjoyed working on the transmission.
20190614-170717.jpg

It turns out the my issue I spotted right away after pulling the valve body off the trans when it was on the bench. I could have fixed this in the truck if I had figured it out before pulling the trans out. I had left the anchor pin for the 2nd gear band out. It essentially got stuck in the case when I had disassembled the case the first time and fell out when I had cleaned the case. I remember seeing it in the parts washer at work, but didn't realize it was mine at the time. When I went to put the trans together the mount for the 2nd gear band fits very nicely, like it was meant to, in the anchor pin hole in the case. I didn't think anything of it at the time. I had to buy a new one.
20190614-170213.jpg

I got it all reassembled. New clutches, new band, new o-rings and seals, new bushings, new 2-4 drum, shift kit installed, and inspected many parts and spots for wear etc...
20190616-170044.jpg

I got it reinstalled and everything worked like it should. Shifted great and the rpms were where they should be. I even drove it the 22miles into work on occasion.
20190628-071848.jpg

Now the emissions saga begins. This is approximately the end of may, beginning of june time period.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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So now that it runs and drives I've got to get this thing legal so I can get my family out in it and actually use it for once. I needed to drive it for a bit to get all of the OBDII monitors to run and to work out any issues before going to the smog referee. So I started driving it around on the back roads after the kids have gone to bed and within a day or so got all the monitors except the evap system to pass.

Getting the evap system to self test would prove impossible. I drove it off and on for about a month without it ever self testing. I'm not sure what exactly how GM got this system past CARB. My wifes subaru forester seems to test every other night. Using a scan tool you can do whats called an "evap service bay test", which pretty much forces the monitor to run so technicians can make sure there repairs work. At the time I thought there might be something wrong with the system so I gave it a shot to see if it could clue me in. Much to my amazement it ran the evap monitor and displayed no issues. Upon checking the monitors the evap had finally passed. All greens, time to schedule my appointment, too bad it would now have to wait till after summer vacation.


After my vacation I scheduled my appointment which took a couple weeks to get to. I installed a catch can for the coolant system. Kinda ghetto, but it works.


I didn't dare drive this think while I was waiting for free of a check engine light coming on. Loaded up and ready for the referee first thing in the morning. Its now early august. Yes, the last three vehicles I have purchased all color match.


The ref spent two hours looking over the swap, mentioned a few things he was overlooking and then went on to tell me it failed due to the fact that the donor was a federal emissions motor being swapped into a california emissions vehicle. I'm not sure why he had spent so much time going over the swap instead of just telling me I had overlooked one of the most basic swap rules. I was pretty bummed out and not really sure what I was going to do next. Its pretty easy to see why most of these types of projects just never get finished.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

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You'll have to excuse the "wall of text", there really wasn't much from this time period that is worth taking a pic of. Sorry, but the saga continues.....

What is the easiest way to make this drivetrain california emissions compliant? The ref mentioned searching and downloading a different calibration that met all the criteria, but he has access to more info than I could find. You really need a VIN# to find any info out about the ECU calibration and whether it is california or federal and I really don't have a good way to do that. I eventually realized that I would need to just buy a whole new used ECU from someone. Still the only way to tell if the vehicle met california standards and not federal was to look at the underhood emissions label. GM with their infinite wisdom decided to put those labels on the top plastic radiator fan shroud cover. You know, one of those easy to get rid of things that gets thrown away fairly quickly when parting a vehicle. I know because I threw mine out without looking at it.

Ok, but what vehicle to look at. 1998 and up blazer/jimmys that were califonia emissions all had air injection and a pre-cat, neither things that I wanted to deal with. I looked at astro vans and found they were the same, even the 1/2 ton trucks were like that. I started looking at 1997 model vehicles and they only had a fourth O2 sensor. So that seemed to be the way to go. Its pretty easy to add another O2 sensor. The wiring was a bit different but not impossible.

I started looking at ECUs on Car-Part.com to see if there was a nearby junkyard that might have something to go look at. Ironically, the junkyard closest to where I work is one of two that I found in california that would post pictures of not only the door jamb build date/vin sticker and RPO code sticker, but also the underhood emissions sticker. They had a 97 Jimmy, california emissions, no air injection, and no pre-cat. Perfect! I do find it interesting that there is no vin# on these stickers.


Pics of 1997 computer on the left vs the 99 on the right.


There are about 16 pins in the computer that need to change and certain things like the EGR are wired slightly different and I had to add that fourth O2 sensor. No big deal though. Got it done.


I got all that done and fixed a brake switch input to the computer that I wired wrong and the referee caught. I then found out that Hptuners does not work on anything pre 98. So I can't program this computer, bummer. Luckily it doesn't seem to have a VATS security issue like the last one. Oh well back to driving it to get the monitors to run.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

No idea what I'm doing
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208
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298
So I drove it, still with no registration. Once again I can let it warm up, drive it a few miles and all the monitors, except the evap would run and pass. I drove it a few times then brought the scan tool home and tried to force the evap monitor to run. No luck. It would tell you "waiting for purge enable" then never do anything. This would repeat for several weeks as I tried to get the evap to run by driving it or by scan tool.

Getting frustrated I started looking at evap PIDS and noticed that the fuel level wasn't reading. Which is odd as it had been working with the previous computer. I did some diagnostics to make sure the computer was getting the same signal from the fuel tank sensor. Luckily I never had to pull the tank. Everything was there. Back to the wiring diagram its showing something called a "fuel level buffer module". The info I had said this basically just removed the bounce and slowed down the fuel sensor circuit readings. Apparently it must convert the fuel sensor readings to some form of digital signal as I couldn't get the computer to work without it. Luckily the junkyard still had the same jimmy and I found the black box tucked behind the glovebox with some searching.
20191118-205054.jpg

I wound up putting that where the old toyota ECU sat and had to add a couple extra wires in, but it works and now I have a fuel level signal.
20191119-220552.jpg

Great! Lets reset the monitors all over again since the computer was disconnected to change up some wiring. Once again, can't get the evap to pass. Right around christmas I start daily driving this thing in a hail marry attempt to get it to run the evap monitor. For about 5 weeks I drive it back and forth to work on the highway and back roads with no luck. I tried the scan tool method mulitiple times with no luck. I even make sure I have the latest computer calibration for that vehicle. No luck. Once again, how did GM get this system past CARB?! Pretty cool though if your vehicle is already certified as It'll pretty much never test itself on its own.

Pretty frustrated at this point with no end in sight I do recall reading how some scan tools simply don't work with the evap service bay test. While I had gotten the snap on scan tool to work with the previous 99 computer, maybe it just doesn't work with the 97? I used to be a mechanic many years ago and remembered that they had a Mastertech scan tool. That was the dealer scan tool back in that era and worth a shot.

I try not to burn bridges when I leave a workplace for a new job, and this is where it pays off, knowing people with the right tool for the job. The Mastertech is now really old, but I was able to borrow one of the techs Tech 2 scan tools and GM software card. I initiated the test and didn't realize it was even working for a bit, but got with the program and started to notice things getting checked off. Low and behold this ECU just needs a specific scan tool to force that evap service bay test to run.
20200116-155804.jpg

Once again time to call the referee! Luckily this time it only took a week to get in. This time I drove it there and he passed it, although not without some doubt. I'm paraphrasing because I don't recall it exactly, but basically what he said was, "Everything looks good to me, so I'm going to push it through because I don't want to be the one to hold things up.". Which doesn't give me a warm and fuzzy feeling. Apparently he is not the final say, someone up in sacramento is. So at this point I'm expecting my tags, but I wouldn't be surprised if I got a letter in the mail from CARB/BAR either.
At least I got my sticker for now! This was last week.
IMG-20200122-092829-878.jpg


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

No idea what I'm doing
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
208
Messages
298
Already started. Pretty much drove it home from work that day after seeing the ref and started pulling the exhaust off. I'm trying to think positively and that I won't need to go back. I'm not sure he even looked at the exhaust anyways.


Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

No idea what I'm doing
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
208
Messages
298
While I was waiting to get this thing legal I was working on a few other projects also.

I actually made the front driveshaft, I just never installed it. I didn't want it to get in the way of the ref inspecting the cat or exhaust system. Its pretty similar to the rear so the pics look almost the same. I want to say the front and rear shafts are about 2" difference in length now.

Parts from my old front driveshaft.
20190630-161556.jpg

Cutting tube.
20190707-170332.jpg

Mocked up for a test fit.
20190707-202626.jpg

Painted and ready to install.
20190710-203802.jpg

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

No idea what I'm doing
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
208
Messages
298
The other large project that got started was making a proper t-case cross member. I've never been happy with any t-case cross member in this vehicle, and I'm trying to rectify that situation. The current cross member was simply random parts I had laying around I used in an effort to get the drive train mounted. It was always a temporary measure much like the exhaust. Its just good enough to get me through the referee process and once its legal I could make it how I really wanted it.

I knew at some point in the near future I'm going to link the front of this truck so I needed a cross member/subframe setup that would allow that, support a skidplate, support the t-cases with hopefully both mounts, and allow the drivetrain to be slid back a bit and removed without having to undo suspension links, all the while not interfering with the fuel, brake, and e-brake cable lines mounted to the inside of the frame rails.

So I started designing and came up with this.


And since I didn't have much else to keep me busy at night I started making parts for it. I'm using flanged nuts to retain the skid plate instead of through bolts or rivnuts.


All the square tube is left over drops from work. I don't need long lengths so this works out perfect. One of the reasons I didn't just design this all out of plate.


Welded up and ready for cleanup.


I have most of both sides finished. At this point I really need to get them fitted to the frame and welded on. Then I can measure and build the actual cross member pieces and skid plate. My models are only so good. Once I'm happy with the exhaust this cross member/subframe setup will be next. I'm trying to be in moab in april.

Kevin
 

Ghetto Fab.

No idea what I'm doing
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
208
Messages
298
Trying to keep this updated.

I've been plugging away at the exhaust system. Its all tacked together now. I've started working on making some of the mounts. I need to add in one connection point between the merge collector and the cat to make installing it all easier and get some O2 sensor bungs.




Kevin
 
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