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On 4/20/2018 at 8:27 PM, Pete M said:

awesome!  :L:  can you make a copy of that install for the DIY forum?

 

Done and done.

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On 4/28/2018 at 4:51 AM, crumbscomanche said:

that shell is freakin sweet! 

 

Thanks. They can still be found for a reasonable price with a bit of searching and patience. But like the comanche going the way of the dodo.

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84’-94’, Comanches and Cherokees came with a single-diaphragm brake booster.  While this worked OK for stock once larger tires and a lift are added the lack of braking quickly becomes apparent. The later Cherokees and Grand Cherokees use a dual-diaphragm booster, which increase pressure in the brake lines, applying more pressure to the brakes, resulting in faster stops. There are multiple ways to do this swap and I'm not going to go into great detail as there are sufficient write ups to be found. I  used 00’ WJ booster and master cylinder, it’s rumored to give a bit better braking.

 

And old photo but it gives a side-by-side comparison of the stock Comanche booster vs. the Grand Cherokee. The push rod on the Grand Cherokee has to be modified to allow the brake switch to be put on correctly. Getting the push rod to the right length was the most time consuming portion. Initially I ground to much off and the brake switch wouldn't activate the brake lights. I applied JB Weld on the push rod and sanded that down until it was at the correct length.

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For the new larger booster to fit the firewall needs to be slightly modified.

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I marked the section that needed to be moved to allow the booster to be fully seated.

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Then I used a dremel to make relief cuts. Then followed that with some pliers to fold the portion up and under. 

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The lip still needs to be raised up slightly to allow the booster to fully seat into position.

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It’s recommended to use a ¼” spacer to keep the push rod lengths similar. After measuring the distances between the 89’ and the 00’, and seeing the significant height distance in the brake pedal and accelerator I decided a spacer was in order. If you grab the booster from the junkyard often times you may find a factory plastic spacer, I didn't have one, but I had a number of  unused washers. A couple test fits and I had the correct amount of washers. For my application it ended up being each stack was 6.7mm in height. 

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The Grand Cherokee MC uses a bubble flare at the connection, so new 3/16 brake lines with bubble flares at the MC and double flares at the proportioning valve are needed.

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When I first when to test the push rod length on the brake booster I had to connect up the battery to get power. When I put the negative cable onto the post the truck starts turning over. Thinking I left the ignition in the on position I go to turn it off and see there are no keys and the ignition is turned off. Odd right, maybe it was a fluke. I go and connect the negative cable again and the truck starts turning over again. As long as the cable is touching the post the truck will crank. Now I am thinking I have a problem and I've never personally had this problem nor heard of this occurring. Off to the inter web for possible solutions.

 

First solution: I have the starter wired up incorrectly and/or the cable terminals is touching something it shouldn't on the starter. Out to the garage and loosen the starter wires, reposition, and ensure that nothing is touching.  Crawl out from under the truck, put the negative cable onto the post, the truck starts turning over. Go back into the house and read some more.

 

Second solution: Could be a bad starter solenoid. Out to the garage and under the truck again. Now I remove the whole starter to test the solenoid. Test the current one it checks out. Crawl back under the truck and put the starter on and connect it back up. Put the negative cable to the post. Truck starts cranking. Several threads read that even if the starter solenoid tests out it could still be bad. So I crawl back under to remove the starter....again and swap the starter solenoid for a good one that I randomly have on hand. Crawl back under and connect everything back up. Get out from under the truck, touch the negative battery cable to the post, truck starts turning over again. Back into the house to read some more possible reasons.

 

Third and fourth solutions: Several threads talk about a bad starter relay or a faulty ignition switch. At this point I start thinking I know that they can't be bad as the truck was running flawlessly a month ago before I started swapping parts over. I try to remember the K.I.S.S concept and realize these are getting more and more complex in repair and diagnostics. So I begin to think what have I done that might lead to this. The only thing that I have done with the electrical system was swap the battery cables. So I go out and start tracing the cables and everything looks to be connected correctly. Doesn't make sense.....I trace again, more carefully again and then I notice this, almost hard to notice but somehow I did.

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The positive battery cable that connects to the starter relay is just, and I mean just touching the plastic on the connection for the starter solenoid. I loosened the nut on the starter relay, moved the cable terminal away from the connection, tighten everything back up. Go to touch the negative cable to the post, no cranking. Two hours and some change later, problem solved. 

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Completed Cruiser54's tip #18 - Improving the Instrument Panel Ground. In his recommendations the cable is recommended to be 12" long. I only went with about 6" and attached it behind the support for the steering wheel.

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Completed the wiring for the power windows and locks. Earlier in the year I made a trip to the junkyard and found a 4 door Cherokee with power windows and locks. I stripped the wiring from the doors and into the cab. As I've never done this, and I couldn't find a wiring diagram online I started by unraveling the wire harness  and tracing each wire to see what it went to and where. Then using some painters tape labeled them for future reference.

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Once I knew what went to where I rewrapped the wire harness.

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With the help of HOrnbrod I drew up the wiring diagram that I need for my application. While perusing Ebay I came across a master control switch for a 86-96 two door Cherokee for cheap. While the wiring harness is for a four door, I adapted it to work with the two door control switch.

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After I mapped what goes where I put the wiring harness into place

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The wiring for the passenger door was run along the front under the dash.

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The locks and windows worked.......for about a day. The passenger window regulator died on me while I was testing it out. It goes down with no problems. Going back up I have to flick the switch on both the master control switch and passenger switch multiple times to get it to go back up. So a new regulator is on the to do list.

 

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Swapped over the full gauges and stereo head unit from the 89' Comanche to Villa. 

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And finally put the front fender back on since installing the door hinge brackets. While I was putting the fenders back on I took the opportunity to trim the front fangs off as well.

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The transmission tunnel cover has a foam backing that was dry and deteriorating. Until I removed it, then it was a sticky goop. Recently I read that olive oil can be used to remove sticky things. I figured that I would give it a try, and it turns out that works amazing at removing sticky stuff. The sticky foam came off in about five minutes.

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 With the sticky foam removed, I laid down some sound deadener & heat barrier mat. I bought a 4' x 10' roll off of Amazon. The mat does have an adhesive on so a can of 3M Super 77 was used to help lay it down. and the seams were taped up with foil tape. 

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Finished product.

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Finished up some more on the interior of Villa. Originally the plan was to put some sound deadener and heat barrier mat on the roof. However, much to my surprise on removing the headliner I found a large amount of rust on the roof. I know the windshield leaks and the only thing I can think of is that when it leaked some water became trapped between the roof and some matting that had been installed at some point in time between the headliner and the roof. So my afternoon entailed applying Chasis Saver to the roof to stop the rust. Since the headliner was going to be out for more time than anticipated I made a jaunt to the local Joann's fabric store to get some headliner material and recovered the headliner while it was out.

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Had some time this evening. Was able to put the sound deadener and heat barrier mat on the roof. 

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4 hours ago, JimmysJeep said:

My dad has one similar to this, lookin good!

Haha, he must have good taste. Thanks for the compliment. 

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Finished with the headliner this afternoon. Turned out better than I had hoped.

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Also was able to get the carpet back in.

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32 minutes ago, agamble said:

Finished with the headliner this afternoon. Turned out better than I had hoped.

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Nice job on the headliner.   :L:

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23 hours ago, HOrnbrod said:

 

Nice job on the headliner.   :L:

 

Thank you! Time will tell how well the glue holds up.

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Friday I took an hour to replace the stock lights that no longer stayed in there proper location. The fix that was performed was to use a grabber screw through holding it in from the front. I neglected to get a picture of this, but you can see the hole it left behind. I used the euramatec lights that have a more stock look that a number of other forum members have installed. Installation is very easy. The existing hole needs to be enlarged, width wise by about a quarter of an inch. A dremel with a rotary but made quick and easy work. Wiring, also straight forward. Clip the existing connector off, wire on three female connects, plug on according to the wiring diagram that comes with the lights.

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Spent most of the day today underneath Villa. And come out almost looking worst for wear. I've already done a bunch of rust repair (floor pans and portion of the transmission tunnel) and prevention on the interior. Today I moved to the undercarriage, paying particle attention to the cab corners and rear floor pans. In hindsight I should have done some sort of wash of the under carriage before dismantling Villa. But then again how well I would have been able to clean the undercarriage is a whole different question. I used a wire cup to brush off any loose dirt, rust, factory sound deadening material, and whatever else was under there. 

Before the wire brushing.

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After the wire brushing.

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I check and the rust appears to be superficial. Still had plenty of thickness to it. I did the screw driver test, the one where you stab at it in various places to see how easily it punches through... I know, super technical. I was not going easy on the punching and all impact points had a strong metal clang. The rear floor pans were still clean/rust free on the interior side, nor did the cab corners have any rust in the interior portions. Everything was external.

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I used the same product, Chassis Saver that I used for the interior. Where there was exposed rust and/or sound deadening spray from the factory it adhered nice and thick on the first coating. As the product instructions state, it works great if it has something to bite onto. The roughed up painted areas took two coats to get good coverage.

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I also performed the screw driver test on the rockers. The passenger side not an issue, when I got to the drivers side rocker I punched through a couple places. This side had a couple areas that still seemed okay strength wise but definitely have rust issues. I might see about getting some rust inhibitor to spray inside the rocker. But even that might now be enough. If I was still somewhere where there were harsh winters and lots of road salt I would say that the rocker might make it a year...maybe two before it gives out. But being in the high desert of eastern Washington, dry, little snow fall, and I don't use this as a daily driver. It should last multiple years before I have any serious issues. In a couple months or year, I may just end up cutting out the rocker and replacing it with a new one. For now I cut out what material was bad and thin, and put in a patch using the left over material from the floor pans.  Forgot to take a picture. I then used some bondo to cover the patch. First coat: 

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A Second coat to make it level after sanding down the first.

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Early on in the swap process I swapped steering boxes. While trying to remove the return line on power steering pump I snapped the plastic nipple off and all the fluid ran out onto the garage floor. I always have the same feeling when it comes to buying new parts. It's a mixture of dread and joy. Dread at the fact of I have to spend money that I don't really want to spend, but joy that I get to/have a reason to buy a new part. Which usually means upgrade time. Alas, no upgrade was to be had this time. I've always been intrigued by the PSC steering reservoir, but I couldn't justify the $400 dollars for the system.Maybe one day, for now went with a remanufactured power steering pump. The swap went quick. I spent more time removing old grease and grime from the previous leaking pump.

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Once the pump was replaced my attention moved to refreshing the bumper that came with Villa. I'm not 100% sure, but my best guess is that it is a Nates4x4 based off of design. For now it meets my needs. Future plans......how far in the future is to be seen, are to get a winch bumper. Refreshing of the bumper consisted of a a quick flapper disc buffing, followed by mixture of Chassis Saver on the areas that were showing heavy rusting and pitting was showing. That was followed by two coats of Rust-O-leum Appliance Epoxy. I've become a big fan of the stuff. I like the durability it provides compared to regular spray paint as well as the finish. I've taken to using it on bumpers and sliders. Only down side is you get two color options, white or black. 

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While waiting for the bumper to dry I started the prep work for the installation IronRockOffroad Rock-Link Long Arms that I purchased a while back. The instructions require that the area where the arm brackets mount all structures that stick out further than the frame rail need to be removed. As of now I have removed the extra brace brackets are used for the cross member, and trimmed the lip that sticks in towards the transmission.

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A second test fit showed that the rear stud for the extra brace needed to be removed for the arm bracket to sit flush on the frame rail.

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Once I had both sides prepped, I reapplied Chassis Saver to the areas of the undercarriage where it was ground off when removing the structures that would interfere with mounting the long arm brackets.

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This evening I started on my transmission swap. In this instance I am going from an internal AX-15 to an external AX-15. For those of you interested the swap will essentially be identical if you're going from the BA10/5. 

 

In my case I am using an external AX-15 from a 98' XJ. It came complete, meaning I had the external slave bell housing, the clutch fork and bearing. If you don't already have these parts you will need to source them. Due to the differences between the Renix era and newer OBDI/OBDII computer systems, when installing the clutch system the Renix era fly wheel and CPS sensor must be used with the newer transmission. 

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When Chrysler changed from the internal slave setup to the external slave, the transmission input shaft diameter was changed meaning if you are using an external slave AX-15 in an older 4.0L a new pilot bearing may be in order. 

The BA10/5 and internal slave AX-15 have a pilot bearing with an Inside Diameter (ID) of 0.5934 inches, Outside Diameter (OD) of 1.055 inches, and depth of 0.719 inches (OE part number 53009181). 

The external slave AX-15 has a pilot bearing with an ID of 0.7518 inches, OD of 1.8161 inches, and depth of 0.719 inches (OE part number 33004041). The standard pilot bearing that comes usually will not fit into the crankcase as it will have to large an OD.  

Side by side of the internal vs external pilot bearing (internal on the left, external on the right).

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A 72 - 73’ CJ, 350 V8 pilot bearing is recommended when swapping in an external AX-15 in an older 4.0L. It has an ID of 0.751 inches, OD of 1.056 inches, and depth of 0.88 inches (National part number PB77HD or Dorman part number 14674). For my application I went with the National bearing. 

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The bronze bearings are impregnated with oil, so when installing do not use grease as it will contaminate the bearing. I've read to make for an easier install the night before place the bearing in some fresh motor oil and store it in the freezer. Now I may be incorrect, but I figured if its already impregnated with oil why would I need to soak it again. And in the winter its just as likely to freeze so it should not affect the bearing in any way to freeze it without additional oil. So 24 hours later I began the install. I used a make shift install tool...an old shop broom handle cut down to size. I slowly tapped it into place, taking care to make sure it was square while inserting it. (Sidenote, when doing this swap, BA10/5 to external AX-15 on my other Comanche the 73’ CJ pilot had too large an OD to fit into the crankcase, in that case I found that the external AX-15 pilot bearing fit into the space, so I ran that one.)

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With the pilot bearing in place I moved onto installing the Luk Heavy Duty Clutch Kit. At this point as long as the clutch kit is designed for the AX-15 it is compatible. The kit comes with an alignment tool to use when installing the friction disc to the flywheel.

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Fly wheel, pilot bearing, and clutch kit in. :applause:

 

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Phase II of the transmission swap

 

When going from an internal slave to an external slave, there are various ways to go about getting the clutch master cylinder and external slave connected. One method is to buy the complete kit. The issue that I have heard with this is that it requires the drilling of a new upper mounting hole in order for the later clutch master cylinder. I have no personal experience with this so I cannot confirm this. 

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To avoid headache and making unnecessary holes I went the second option. AdvancedAdapters sells hydraulic fittings that allows youth retain the year specific clutch master cylinder while mating it up to the slave cylinder at the bell housing. You can order the complete setup (Jeep Slave Cylinder Assembly For NV3550/AX15 Bellhousing, P/N 716340) or you can purchase the parts individually. Why I don't know but, I had a brand new slave cylinder laying around so I purchased the individual parts. To connect the stainless steel hose (716130-60, 60" length or 716130H, 42" length) you will need the early master cylinder fitting that is a 7/16 inverted flare style (P/N 716130F). This fitting will thread right into the clutch master cylinder.

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Then to connect the stainless steel hose to the slave cylinder you will need the TJ Master Cylinder Fitting and Slave Cylinder Fitting (P/N 716130 TJ) and O-ring (P/N 716130OR).

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Once its all connected you will need to prime the hydraulic system. The slave cylinder does not have a bleeder valve. In order to prime the hydraulic system you'll need to let the push fully extend (don't cut or break the retaining straps that come with the slave cylinder). While holding the slave cylinder at a 45 degree angle, pour the fluid into the slave until its full. At this point insert the fitting, o-ring, and hose. And place in the retaining pin. Once secured with the retaining pin hold the slave in a vertical position with the rod pointing down to the floor and slowly push the rod inward about 1". After about 10-15 strokes there should not be any air bubbles in the master cylinder reservoir.

 

Bled, connected, and ready to install.

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Mounted up and waiting for the transmission to be put in.

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Phase III of the transmission swap

 

The final phase of swapping in an external slave is that the bearing retainer needs to be swapped out. The internal slave bearing retainer is shorter and reveals more spline. In the picture below you can see the final setup, the throw out bearing in the front, followed by the clutch fork, and finally the bearing retainer plate.

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When swapping the transfer-case if you did not get an AX15/NP2321 combo you will need to get the correct input gear for the transfer case. The important thing to look for is the variations in the 231 transfer case input gear. The 231 comes in 21 spline (found behind the BA10/5, and I believe pre 91' AW4)  and 23 spline (found behind the AX15 and post 91' AW4) versions. The input gear comes in long, medium (rare) and short variations.  To know which length input gear you have or will be pulling from the donor just take a quick measurement. The long shafts protrude 2.1" from the front mounting face of the transfer case. The short version protrudes 1.2". The rare medium shaft protrudes 1.7". You should also be careful when swapping any of these gears due to different bearing widths and gear teethFor my specific situation I'm going from an AX15 internal slave to AX15 external slave, and both transferases had the short input gear. So it was a straight swap. Another thing to watch out for is the 4WD shift linkage is different between the BA10/5 and AX15. You can take one of two approaches, you can cobble together a functioning one from the two or use an after market product (google returns several results). I went with the shift linkage from Boostwerks. 

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A very important thing that I found out the hard way for myself as no-one ever mentioned in the swap posts I read and had the hardest time finding in the after math. When swapping from the BA10/5 to the AX15 the BA10/5 transmission bracket (it connects the transmission mount to the transmission) does not work on the AX15. The spot for the transmission mount 3/4" to 1" lower. You will have to use an AX15 specific transmission bracket. I didn't want to take the this path and spent several weeks scouring the internet to find the correct bracket.  When mounting the transmission if possible, use the AX15 crossmember. The crossmember holes on BA10/5 do line up with the AX15 mount studs, but will move the frame mounting point further back.  I've heard one work around is to drill and tap new crossmember holes in frame where the crossmember will then be located. I didn't use the AX15 crossmember, as I am putting in long arms (a write up on that will follow once its complete).

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Another easy fix is the reverse lamps connection. When going from the BA10/5 to AX15 you will need to swap the plug. You'll need to replace the silly two prong push-on with a two-pole Delphi Weatherpack (and you may need to extend the wiring a bit). You can buy a weatherpack new online or go clip one from any vehicle in the junkyard.

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All buttoned up with the new external slave cylinder in place.

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On 3/28/2018 at 7:50 PM, agamble said:

Allow me to introduce my latest project, Pancho Villa. Why Pancho Villa you ask? That is due to the WilderNest that comes along with the truck. A mobile villa. The basic specs are it's a 1990 LWB Pioneer, 4.0L, 4x4, equipped with a 4" lift, 29" tires and 3.07 gear ratio. To accommodate the hefty Wilderness, airbags have been added to the rear frame. Inside its very posh, bench seat with head rests, no AC, and electric windows......on the drivers side, passenger side if you reach across the cab. Apart from that no other modifications have been done since I was last in possession of it. Amazing how things come full circle. It came back into my possession when a family member decided to upgrade to a newer, nicer rig. They asked if I wanted the truck back, and you can bet that I wasn't going to pass it up. The only change between then and now was the addition of the WilderNest and the airbags. But enough with the chit chat, on to the pics.

 

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Love this setup. Do you know the Wildernest model number? Did it need to be modified or is it a perfect fit?

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