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  1. #1

    Essential under carriage protection for cheap

    Out of the box a JK has a few weak points when it comes to UCP in my opinion. Rock rails, control arm mounts, diff covers and the gas tank, all can be addressed for cheap.

    Weld Disclaimer - The welds pictured in this thread are mostly mine and I'll be the first to admit they look terrible. Having said that, none of them have failed and most of the work was done over three years ago.

    Rock rails. If you have a Rubicon your rock rails are fine, and in my experience they work really well. If you don't own a Rubicon I'd suggest finding some take-offs for cheap vs. an expensive after-market solution (unless you have plenty of cash :)).

    Diff covers. At about $100 each plus fluid cost, cast iron diff covers are a must if you wheel anywhere with rocks. I went with Genuine Gear by there are a host of companies making these. I also put lube lockers on mine while I was at it.

    Gas tank protection. The JK gas tank cover is paper thin and just about useless so my friend Alan and I came up with a 3/16ths wrap idea. The front to middle is where the stock cover is most vulnerable because that's about the the break over point is so that's what we wrapped. We've both tested these over the last couple of years and they work!!

    We fabbed up some supports so they would bolt to the stock skid plate mounts (the small one is recessed so the bolt head is below the skid plate and can’t get smashed). We bent one end to flow with the contour of the cross member at the front near the t-case. We couldn’t figure out an easy way to make the front “bolt on” so we ended up welding them directly on the cross member. Getting it off will require a couple of minutes with a grinder, not too bad!

    Pictures are better than words.

  2. #2
    Control arm mount protection.

    Alan and I added some bullet proof protection to the wimpy OEM control arm mounts. Cost was free (some 1/4" scrap steel) and it only took a few minutes to knock these up. The stock front mounts are particularly weak and one decent smash on a rock could rip them off.

    The front and rear are beefed up the same but since I had Poly Performance shock relocation brackets on the rear I cut about 1.5 inches off the bottom before welding on the plate.

  3. #3
    Under Observation GoodysGotaCuda's Avatar
    Date Committed
    Dec 2011
    Denton, TX
    I need to do something similar with my gas tank skid, I've been thinking of skinning the stock skid with 3/16" and cutting out the major dents in the stocker.

    + on the Rubi rails remove them and clean all the small pebbles out from behind them. Otherwise you'll end up with a peppered rocker panel if you replace them. Either use weatherstripping or silicone the gap shut to keep rocks from getting between the tub and slider.
    I like turtles



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