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Thread: New JL baja build

  1. #1
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    New JL baja build

    Hello everyone,

    Looking for some guidance on a build for running desert trails in CA and Az. New to this form and to jeeps.

    Would use my 4Runner TRD on trials when needed to be street legal in CA and use the X3 on Az trails.

    Now wanting to flat toe around more in CA mostly, just sold the X3 and 4Runner is next.

    Want to build a daily driver to run desert trails to keep up with buddies Manx and bajas. They run pretty fast with trailing arms and long travel.

    I know I wonít be running at the front of the pack anymore, but can I build a JL that I can drive to work and run whoops on the weekend and stay with in radio distance of the fast buggies.

    Thinking 35s or 37s tops.

    option 1 - sport JLU with new axles and long travel coil-overs,

    Option 2 JLUR with decent spring and shock kit.

    Total Budget = 60k

    Are the suspension kits out too new to determine a solution yet?

    Will rubicon axles handle desert whoops and G outs?

    All advice welcome. Glad to be part of the forum.
    Last edited by joe77; 05-25-2019 at 11:34 AM.

  2. #2
    Hooked GCM 2.0's Avatar
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    New JL baja build

    First- Is the $60k including the purchase of the Jeep? Or is $60k the budget for just the aftermarket build? My Jeep (after purchase price) had a build entry price easily starting at about $60k for 1 ton axles, coilovers and three tube bypass shocks at each corner, new bead lock wheels, 40Ē tires, and the shop labor. That is also no mods to engine or transmission, all those were left stock. Race seats, harnesses, bolt in cage, and many other upgrades were added over time, but again $60k is just a start for axles, suspension, tires, wheels, labor.

    Second- NO Absolutely NO. Stock Rubicon axles will not handle bombing through the desert, at least not for more than one or two outings with your friends.

    Three- you need to lower your expectations on keeping up or even staying in radio range with what your friends are running. A $60k budget ainít gonna be even close to enough money spent on axle, suspension and motor/trans upgrades and/or complete swap out. Basically $60k - $100k in aftermarket build on Jeep will get you a Jeep that will only out do other jeeps or a mostly stock Ford Raptor in desert terrain. If you are really interested in Jeeps as being the Swiss Army knife of daily drivers, you need to be realistic about it being able to go fast in the dirt. And Iím not even talking stock two seater side-by-side fast. What it will cost you to build the Jeep that can begin to touch Polaris RZR speed in whoops, would be easier and cheaper to accomplish buying a trailer that tows the used prerunner you bought off desert racing classifieds.

    Hereís a great example of the fastest desert Jeeps currently racing, that are the closest to being street legal (actually with a windshield thrown in, its probably street legal in AZ) The class/series they race in is called JeepSpeed. This class when taking part in SCORE, BITD, KOH races is the last class, or group, to leave the starting line. Way behind even the side-by-sides starting time. Why? Because they are Slooooowwww.

    So if you can live with swallowing your pride by having a Jeep thatís fastest amongst Jeeps, take part here on the forum and be willing to learn about whatís practical and realistic.



    Sent from my iPhone using JL Wrangler Jeep Forum mobile app
    Last edited by GCM 2.0; 05-09-2019 at 04:37 AM.

  3. #3
    Knows a Thing or Two JAGS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GCM 2.0 View Post
    First- Is the $60k including the purchase of the Jeep? Or is $60k the budget for just the aftermarket build? My Jeep (after purchase price) had a build entry price easily starting at about $60k for 1 ton axles, coilovers and three tube bypass shocks at each corner, new bead lock wheels, 40Ē tires, and the shop labor. That is also no mods to engine or transmission, all those were left stock. Race seats, harnesses, bolt in cage, and many other upgrades were added over time, but again $60k is just a start for axles, suspension, tires, wheels, labor.

    Second- NO Absolutely NO. Stock Rubicon axles will not handle bombing through the desert, at least not for more than one or two outings with your friends.

    Three- you need to lower your expectations on keeping up or even staying in radio range with what your friends are running. A $60k budget ainít gonna be even close to enough money spent on axle, suspension and motor/trans upgrades and/or complete swap out. Basically $60k - $100k in aftermarket build on Jeep will get you a Jeep that will only out do other jeeps or a mostly stock Ford Raptor in desert terrain. If you are really interested in Jeeps as being the Swiss Army knife of daily drivers, you need to be realistic about it being able to go fast in the dirt. And Iím not even talking stock two seater side-by-side fast. What it will cost you to build the Jeep that can begin to touch Polaris RZR speed in whoops, would be easier and cheaper to accomplish buying a trailer that tows the used prerunner you bought off desert racing classifieds.

    Hereís a great example of the fastest desert Jeeps currently racing, that are the closest to being street legal (actually with a windshield thrown in, its probably street legal in AZ) The class/series they race in is called JeepSpeed. This class when taking part in SCORE, BITD, KOH races is the last class, or group, to leave the starting line. Way behind even the side-by-sides starting time. Why? Because they are Slooooowwww.

    So if you can live with swallowing your pride by having a Jeep thatís fastest amongst Jeeps, take part here on the forum and be willing to learn about whatís practical and realistic.



    Sent from my iPhone using JL Wrangler Jeep Forum mobile app
    Iím guessing heís thinking 60k all in. Based on his question, Iím also guessing heís shitting his pants over your reply. Lol.

  4. #4
    Hooked CalSgt's Avatar
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    I have seen nicely built JK's with 60's and the EVO DTD go for around 60K... I know its not the JL you asked about, but for the budget DTD is supposed to be a pretty capable setup for desert.

    If you do have an additional 60 burning a hole in your pocket to trick out a new JL, Off Road Evolution in Fullerton CA could set you up with coilers, triple bypasses, hydro bump stops, axles and everything else you need to go fast.

    If the focus is high speed desert stuff a Rubicon would probably be a waste of the extra cost. You would end up replacing axles, so the 4:10 gears, and lockers wouldn't matter and you probably wouldn't benefit from the 4:1 low range in the T case either.

    For radio distance if you are talking about using 50 watt dual band type radios this might do it... CB not so much

  5. #5
    Hooked GCM 2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CalSgt View Post
    I have seen nicely built JK's with 60's and the EVO DTD go for around 60K... I know its not the JL you asked about, but for the budget DTD is supposed to be a pretty capable setup for desert.

    If you do have an additional 60 burning a hole in your pocket to trick out a new JL, Off Road Evolution in Fullerton CA could set you up with coilers, triple bypasses, hydro bump stops, axles and everything else you need to go fast.

    If the focus is high speed desert stuff a Rubicon would probably be a waste of the extra cost. You would end up replacing axles, so the 4:10 gears, and lockers wouldn't matter and you probably wouldn't benefit from the 4:1 low range in the T case either.

    For radio distance if you are talking about using 50 watt dual band type radios this might do it... CB not so much
    Even buying a used, built Jeep with EVO Double Throw Down, Atlas T-case, and V8 swapped in, it cannot do what a Side-by-side with long arm kit and upgraded shocks can do. This is why I stated several times to the OP of the thread that he needs to adjust his expectations of what a really, really well built Jeep is capable of in long high speed sections of desert. They will always be mediocre at best in that environment. Crawling in rocks, now thatís a different story.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe77 View Post
    Hello everyone,

    Looking for some guidance on a build for running desert trails in CA and Az. New to this form and to jeeps.

    Would use my 4Runner TRD on trials when needed to be street legal in CA and use the X3 on Az trails.

    Now wanting to flat toe around more in CA mostly, just sold the X3 and 4Runner is next.

    Want to build a daily driver to run desert trails to keep up with buddies Manx and bajas. They run pretty fast with trailing arms and long travel.

    I know I wonít be running at the front of the pack anymore, but can I build a JL that I can drive to work and run whoops on the weekend and stay with in radio distance of the fast buggies.

    Thinking 35s or 37s tops.

    option 1 - sport JLU with new axles and long travel coil-overs,

    Option 2 JLUR with decent spring and shock kit.

    Total Budget = 60k

    Are the suspension kits out too new to determine a solution yet?

    Will rubicon axles handle desert whoops and G outs? 9Apps Vidmate

    All advice welcome. Glad to be part of the forum.

    If that $60k including the cost of the Jeep, I'd have to agree with everyone else - not gonna happen. $60k on top of the cost of your Jeep, you'll get closer but being that not a whole lot is out, a lot of that will have to be custom work and that can get expensive.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by joe77 View Post
    Hello everyone,

    Looking for some guidance on a build for running desert trails in CA and Az. New to this form and to jeeps.

    Would use my 4Runner TRD on trials when needed to be street legal in CA and use the X3 on Az trails.

    Now wanting to flat toe around more in CA mostly, just sold the X3 and 4Runner is next.

    Want to build a daily driver to run desert trails to keep up with buddies Manx and bajas. They run pretty fast with trailing arms and long travel.

    I know I wonít be running at the front of the pack anymore, but can I build a JL that I can drive to work and run whoops on the weekend and stay with in radio distance of the fast buggies.

    Thinking 35s or 37s tops.

    option 1 - sport JLU with new axles and long travel coil-overs,

    Option 2 JLUR with decent spring and shock kit.

    Total Budget = 60k

    Are the suspension kits out too new to determine a solution yet?

    Will rubicon axles handle desert whoops and G outs?

    All advice welcome. Glad to be part of the forum.

    If that $60k including the cost of the Jeep, I'd have to agree with everyone else - not gonna happen. $60k on top of the cost of your Jeep, you'll get closer but being that not a whole lot is out, a lot of that will have to be custom work and that can get expensive.

  8. #8
    Old Timer doubletapdaddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scottsmith01 View Post
    If that $60k including the cost of the Jeep, I'd have to agree with everyone else - not gonna happen. $60k on top of the cost of your Jeep, you'll get closer but being that not a whole lot is out, a lot of that will have to be custom work and that can get expensive.
    Quote Originally Posted by lovelash View Post
    If that $60k including the cost of the Jeep, I'd have to agree with everyone else - not gonna happen. $60k on top of the cost of your Jeep, you'll get closer but being that not a whole lot is out, a lot of that will have to be custom work and that can get expensive.



    Why the same first post from two separate accounts? Is the Matrix broken?

  9. #9
    Old Timer doubletapdaddy's Avatar
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    One from Nevada and one from India no less. Is this the Chinese again?

  10. #10
    Hooked GCM 2.0's Avatar
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    New JL baja build

    Quote Originally Posted by doubletapdaddy View Post
    One from Nevada and one from India no less. Is this the Chinese again?
    Actually his/its/her/their first posting profile says Neveda.... as we all know, the 53rdíish state.

    Also their favorite trail is the famous 2014 BMW 340c. Which I believe is in Tallahassee, New Mexico

    Sent from my iPad using JL Wrangler Jeep Forum mobile app
    Last edited by GCM 2.0; 07-11-2019 at 03:34 PM.

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