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Project: Snow Swamper

Old 03-13-2013, 08:35 PM
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Cool Project: Snow Swamper

Hi y'all! Have a couple Jeep projects coming up so I figured I'd might as well start my build thread. Why 'Snow Swamper'? I guess 'cause I live in Michigan and so we get some crazy snow. She's a 98 Classic XJ, 4.0L, w/select-a-trac. I bought her over a year ago already on a Zone 4.5" lift and 31" tires.
Project: Snow Swamper-003.jpg
One interesting feature she came with was a push button mounted next to the ignition. For some reason the key couldn't turn all the way forward to the start position; only to the on position. To start the rig, you would turn the key to the on position and then start her up by pushing the button. Unusual, but I'm young and though it was cool. The cause of the key not turning all the way was a long painful story (filled with rednecks and duct tape) the end result being myself and my dad traipsing through multiple junkyards and eventual replacing the steering column and ignition.
Besides this escapade,I had to replace the front U-joints and rear brakes. Two fuel pumps quickly followed . There, of course , was lots of other minor repairs to do, but that don't need mentioning. My first actual 'upgrade' was a front bumper. I went with a Olympic 4x4 Boa Extreme Front Bumper. It was actually a wrangler bumper but they offered some adaption brackets, allowing it to work on a Cherokee. Next were 31x10.5x15 Goodyear Wrangler DuraTracs to replace the old who knows what the XJ was riding on. This is how she sat about then.
Project: Snow Swamper-img_6602.jpg
Project: Snow Swamper-img_6604.jpg
I then threw some 1.25 inch wheel spacers in the widen the stance and help with some rubbing. Recently, I replaced the stock sound system with a Kicker system. I also installed some 55w fog lights in the provided holes in my bumper. The things are brighter than my headlights . I apologies again for the lack of pictures, there will defiantly be more as I start building. Here are just a few pictures as of late.
Project: Snow Swamper-005-3-.jpg
Project: Snow Swamper-008-3-.jpg
That brings me to the present.

Last edited by EagleXJ; 10-11-2013 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 03-13-2013, 08:49 PM
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My upcoming projects include a roof rack, a new front bumper, and rock sliders. I plan to weld all these myself. The roof rack is the first to come. It'll have five, 6 inch HID driving lights on the front, possibly some type of back-up light on the rear, a spare tire mount, high-lift mount, ax and shovel mount. More details on that as it's built. The bumper will be next. Why a new bumper? Well, I need a winch. I wheel alone most the time pushing a winch pretty high on my upgrades list. This bumper, while winch compatible on the Wrangler, isn't on the Cherokee. I want it to look something like this:
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I may extend the middle guard into a stinger. Idk.

Last edited by EagleXJ; 11-27-2013 at 07:33 AM.
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Old 03-21-2013, 06:05 PM
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Do I build a winch plate into the bumper, like in the pictures, or do I put in a receiver hitch and keep the winch on a cradle in the back until needed? This would probably be better for the winch as it wouldn't be exposed to the elements (and here in Michigan we got elements).

Last edited by EagleXJ; 11-27-2013 at 07:33 AM.
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Old 03-27-2013, 09:17 PM
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So, I mentioned I was going to throw some HID driving lights on the roof. Well, instead of spending $800+ on them I built my own. I started out with some cheap $10 KC knock offs from HF:
Project: Snow Swamper-002.jpgProject: Snow Swamper-003.jpg
Then I went to ebay and purchased a HID conversion kit; $30.
Project: Snow Swamper-005.jpg
The light from HF were original 55w and were pretty bright; I took out the bulb and wiring and substituted my bulb.
Project: Snow Swamper-006.jpg
It screwed right in! Very nice!
Project: Snow Swamper-016.jpg
There was so much room behind the lens, that the ballast for the HID fit in there making it a very compact unit . I tried them out and they were RIDICULOUSLY BRIGHT. They completely kill me high beams. You can clearly see the beam of light. Very, very happy with the outcome. Now I just got to decide on whether to run 4 of 5 of them on my roof.

Last edited by EagleXJ; 03-28-2013 at 07:13 AM.
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:45 PM
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Originally Posted by EagleXJ View Post
So, I mentioned I was going to throw some HID driving lights on the roof. Well, instead of spending $800+ on them I built my own. I started out with some cheap $10 KC knock offs from HF:
Attachment 183396Attachment 183397
Then I went to ebay and purchased a HID conversion kit. The light from HF were original 55w and were pretty bright; I took out the bulb and wiring and substituted my bulb. It screwed right in! Very nice! There was so much room behind the lens, that the ballast for the HID fit in there making it a very compact unit . I tried them out and they were RIDICULOUSLY BRIGHT. They completely kill me high beams. You can clearly see the beam of light. Very, very happy with the outcome. Now I just got to decide on whether to run 4 of 5 of them on my roof.

My WiFi sucks right know so I am unable to upload many pics. I will edit this post with photos at a later date.
You, sir, are the greatest person who's ever lived. this is genius haha. (im sure many other people do this but its the first ive seen. def gonna do this instead of getting new kcs for my xj.
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:12 AM
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Just be careful with those housings. They like to rust on yah, great idea though, might do this when I want more light
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:07 AM
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I read a few people propose this idea, but no one really tried it. So I figured it was worth giving it a try. I plan on coating the inside of the light and spray painting the outside black. It'll look better and last a lot longer. Defiantly beats spending $200 per HID light!

Last edited by EagleXJ; 03-28-2013 at 07:14 AM.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:57 PM
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Ok, I threw pics in the HID conversion post.^^^
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:53 AM
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Nicely done.

Your XJ has just the right amount of lift with the 31's and looks great with the factory wheels. Keep us posted with future updates.
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Old 03-31-2013, 06:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Flowpro View Post
Nicely done.

Your XJ has just the right amount of lift with the 31's and looks great with the factory wheels. Keep us posted with future updates.
Thanks! It really needs 33"s but there are other more pressing upgrades.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:19 AM
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Do you have a link to the HID's you bought for those lights?

Originally Posted by EagleXJ View Post
So, I mentioned I was going to throw some HID driving lights on the roof. Well, instead of spending $800+ on them I built my own. I started out with some cheap $10 KC knock offs from HF:
Attachment 183396Attachment 183397
Then I went to ebay and purchased a HID conversion kit; $30.
Attachment 183442
The light from HF were original 55w and were pretty bright; I took out the bulb and wiring and substituted my bulb.
Attachment 183440
It screwed right in! Very nice!
Attachment 183441
There was so much room behind the lens, that the ballast for the HID fit in there making it a very compact unit . I tried them out and they were RIDICULOUSLY BRIGHT. They completely kill me high beams. You can clearly see the beam of light. Very, very happy with the outcome. Now I just got to decide on whether to run 4 of 5 of them on my roof.
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Old 04-01-2013, 03:33 AM
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Great idea with the lights. I would just be worried about how hot those ballasts get. Have you ran the hids for an extended amount of time to see how hot the ballasts get?
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by DaveAz View Post
Do you have a link to the HID's you bought for those lights?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Slim-XENON-HID-KIT-D2S-H1-H3-H4-H7-H11-H13-9006-9007-RE-/270686915557?hash=item3f06328be5&item=270686915557&pt=Motors_Car_Truck_Parts_Accessories&vxp=mtr I had some issues with receiving some bad bulbs, but he sent me replacements; so all was good.
Originally Posted by Dr. Doom View Post
Great idea with the lights. I would just be worried about how hot those ballasts get. Have you ran the hids for an extended amount of time to see how hot the ballasts get?
The ballasts say that they can stand up to 40*C. They do get hot in that housing, though; I ran them for 45 minutes and the outside housing was warm. I may still mount them outside to be safe.
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by EagleXJ View Post
Slim Xenon HID Kit D2S H1 H3 H4 H7 H11 H13 9006 9007 Re | eBay I had some issues with receiving some bad bulbs, but he sent me replacements; so all was good.


The ballasts say that they can stand up to 40*C. They do get hot in that housing, though; I ran them for 45 minutes and the outside housing was warm. I may still mount them outside to be safe.
Great, Thanks! What color bulbs did you get?
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:15 AM
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Originally Posted by DaveAz View Post
Great, Thanks! What color bulbs did you get?
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