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Project MJ for 2011 Ultimate Adventure - Update for '12 Trip


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Hello Everyone. I'm Matt from Zone Offroad Products. I stumbled across your site a month or so ago while researching for a project we are working on. We are the official suspension company for this year's Peterson's 4wd/Offroad Ultimate Adventure. Part of being a sponsor is actually going on the trip. We knew we wanted to build up a Jeep but really wanted something unique. We settled on an MJ. After searching for quite some time we found a '92 short box/manual. Brought it back to the shop and quickly realized it was a little rougher then we thought. Going back to Craigslist we found a beautiful 1990 short box/manual that we picked up in trade for a suspension lift.

 

Anyway, we are in the middle of the build and I figured you guys would be interested in following along. Our marketing guy has been taking pictures and video along the way and posting on our Blog. Watch along as we build this thing into something truely unique. Feel free to post up questions and I will do my best to answer them in a timely fashion. I will be right out there in the shop with the guys pushing the project along. We only have 4 weeks left until this beast has to hit the road.

 

Couple words that might get you interested....Fiberglass, stroker, coilovers and 40's!

 

Check it out here: http://zoneoffroad.com/blog/?cat=188

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Keep checking the Blog. Pictures will be updated as they are taken. I think we are working on another short video today. Working on the cage today as well as the suspension. Fox coilover and bumps should be in next week. Just received BTF diff covers and dual Optima battery box yesterday. Lots of other parts are on the way, like Superior 5.38 Gears/ARB lockers. The Golen 4.6L stroker will be in by the 10th. Lots happening in the next couple weeks as we rush to the finish.

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Welcome to the group. I was actually going to send you guys a message to check to see if you knew out our little part of the world. Now I don't have to. :D

 

I'm glad to see more companies thinking about the MJ. I've noticed that we are during a bit more exposure here and there...

 

On another note, what us the vin on that '92 you guys have? We've been looking for the last one built, and that would let me see where yours falls.

 

Now we just need to get you guys some Comanche club schwag before you run it!

 

Rob :cheers:

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^^^ x2. i was going to email you guys and tell you to post up on the build here. glad to see you came around. can't wait to see the finished product jamminz.gif

 

 

 

Rob please make this a sticky! i don't want this build to get lost in the mix. we've got the world fastest comanche and now we'll have a Zone built trail rig. which will get huge coverage in UA. those two are a huge step in putting the MJ out there :thumbsup:

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On another note, what us the vin on that '92 you guys have? We've been looking for the last one built, and that would let me see where yours falls.

 

1J7FJ26S2NL182315

 

Build date of December 19, 1991

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Depending on price,i might be interested in the suspension you guys put under it when it comes time for my truck. That is, if you decide you want to duplicate the setup for production.

 

Rob :wrench:

 

The base of the front suspension will be very close to the current prototype long arm design we are running on a couple of our XJs. The rear will be a complete one-off custom setup.

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i see in your pics that the bed is still on the truck. why work around it? why not remove the bed & do all tubing? then add bed skins.

 

i was hoping they wouldnt go that route and I'm glad to see they didnt. there are enough truggies out there but few fully built, still, MJs

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i see in your pics that the bed is still on the truck. why work around it? why not remove the bed & do all tubing tied to the plated rear frame? then add bed skins.

 

Actually the bed has been on and off dozens of times since we started this project. We are using the bed off the '92 because the outer panels were already rusty anyway. The bed that came off the '90 is in perfect condition and going on the '92. Trying to fit 40s and run as low as possible we need to check clearances constantly. To this point any work that has been done to the bed has been on saw horses. Also, I believe the pics you are referring to were actually taken a little over a week ago. Several things have changed since then. Most notably, the entire front inner fenders have been cut out (including some of the floorboard) in prep for a complete custom inner fenders to clear both those monster Maxxis tires and new 2.5 Fox coilovers. We are also just finishing up plating the complete length of the unibody.

 

The guys were working on another video today to show a little more of the progress. I would guess it will be available on the Blog sometime Monday.

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The front C/O upper mounts will be integrated into the cage. They will be through the fender wells. We are running 14" stroke front and rear.

 

Logging off for the weekend guys. I will check back here on Monday to answer more questions if you have them. Thanks for the interest in the project.

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Hey guys. Not a lot of extra time to talk today but we let the graphics department in the shop Friday to shoot a quick video. Sorry for the sound quality, we had a couple big fans going since it was in the high 80s in the shop. The cage is starting to come together today/tommorow, suspension will follow.

 

http://zoneoffroad.com/blog/?cat=188

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Much better than anything like 'Extreme 4x4' or the like!

 

The uni-body plating looks good! Did you run into any problems with rust on the 'frame'? That last picture in the blog post of the rear frame rail indicates the frame might have had some rust. I am just curious to know what you might have had to do to combat frame rot.

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Actually, the lower bottom section of the end of each frame rail had very minor rust. Really only the last 3 or 4" had some rust where it looks like someone had mounted a hitch of something in the past. Other then that the uni-body on this was pretty much rust free.

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Do you plan on making a set of unibody stiffeners to sell for the MJ? ie: from the LCA mounts and back to the rear bumper?

Our original plan when we started this was to develop some product from the build. As we got into it we went a little crazy. Now everything is so custom on the vehicle that the parts we are making for this really wouldn't work on most "stock" MJs. But, we do have another MJ setting in the shop that we plan to play with after the dust settles. So later on down the line some of our ideas from this build will probably get applied to the other MJ in the form of production prototypes.

 

Also, the guys were working on yet another video yesterday since we are moving along fairly quickly. That should be posted up on our Blog sometime today.

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