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Beater G influenced by The Road Warrior

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Old 04-19-2016, 01:48 PM
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Beater G influenced by The Road Warrior

Buenos días!

Let me kick this off quick.. there's a very painful, depressing story regarding to my formerly-planned move to Argentina, but I'll cut it all down to this: "I sort of inherited an '03 Infiniti G35 after I sold my Jeep (my totally custom DD) and my dad leased a new car." Given my financial and employment status it made more sense for me to buy my dad's 2003 G and roll with it than to buy a beater. So, I became the new owner of a NJ beater with 182k miles, a lot of rust and corrosion underneath, and a bunch of less-consequential mechanical fails.

*While everyone else seems to be waxing their G and making sleek mods, I have what I believe will be far less popular among the crowd, so I expect harsh criticism (yeah, much worse than stick-on wood-paneling the interior).

What I started with: Nothing worth showing off; minor dings and dents, fogged headlights, damaged front bumper, heavily abused windshield, and a couple spots where rust is forming (rear fender/bumper, anyone?). The G still had the original spark plugs (burned to a crisp!), a low K-Sport coilover suspension, and a bunch of other items that need attention. Original clutch catches very late and low power (may be worth replacement soon if I can pick one up cheap enough). The lifters have a minor tick, nothing too concerning, slight exhaust leak probably at the manifold. My biggest concern is how much oil was getting through to the first spark plug (cylinder #2); the coil pack was DRENCHED and the rubber was soft. I guess I'll be installing a new valve cover gasket coming up.. that was he only coil with oil exposure.

Getting started: I pressed and installed new rear bearings as one was literally falling apart.. the bearings came pouring out when I pulled it off. I was able to swap out the rear coilovers for stock shocks and Tein coils (H Tech, I seem to recall). I also swapped the rear toe arms to the adjustable SPCs, cut the aluminum frame mounts, and installed the toe bolts necessary to rid myself of the horrible camber that was eating the inner tires down to the belts. I did not replace any bushings, however I had an Eibach rear sway bar, which I bolted in place. I have a matching front Eibach anti-roll bar, but haven't gotten there yet. I really want to bring the front back up to stock height.
I bought a complete new set of poly bushings for the front subframe. When I got to the front I found the bushing sleeves were fused to the bolts holding the struts in place and was totally screwed.. I need to take it to a shop and have them do what I simply cannot. I hate having to succumb to paying someone to do what I should be able to accomplish. Damn NJ rust and corrosion. The passenger CV shaft needs to be replaced, as the threads are damn near stripped off the ends. I have two bolts holding it tight for now.


Exhaust: The bracket between the pipe (after the rear 45 degree bend) and the can and I was getting a lot of rattling for it, so I literally dropped it and fabricated a simple straight pipe replacement that bolted to the factory hanger. No rattles, the single exhaust pipe is centered in the driver's side bumper hole, and I cut it at an angle to match the bumper. Looks great from above, is practical, functional, and cost me about $8.


Interior: Sunroof motor/controls went wonky, so I disconnected the plug and left it sealed. Fine by me, I don't need a sunroof, and there are no leaks.
After the driver window motor completely crapped out on me, I replaced the DC brushes with some success (not really to my satisfaction, however). The driver's side internal door lock actuator failed, and I haven't yet bolted on the aftermarket actuator (eventually, but no rush). I am wired for it, tested and everything, but I need a pinch-clip to complete the job.
Given these two issues I decided against replacing the door panel and go with a less polished look.. so I sprayed the metal door panels flat black, fabricated a couple simple mounts to hang an old army bag, and installed a bright red, round LED door-ajar light. The whole door concept is incomplete, but a start to a utilitarian interior. The lower door speaker is protected with a galvanized steel mesh guard.


I also snagged a diesel truck exhaust brake switch from the junkyard, extended my gear shifter (some modifications to an aluminum 3" extension required) and mounted that along with a new modified aluminum shifter.. I plan on using this switch to turn on/off my VDC/traction control (maybe, a relay to make it act as a momentary switch will be required). *I had one of these in my Jeep that controlled my auxiliary reverse lights, but that's not really an option here.
**You'll note I have a blue light propped up on the passenger dash.. it doesn't stay there but I threw it up there for the novelty of the Road Warrior for this pic. If not for the passenger airbag, I would likely fabricate a simple shelf for it.


Next steps: I was thinking about creating an external red light as a pulsing low fuel indicator, too. It would require running wire leads from the tiny yellow in-dash low fuel light out to a relay, then an LED light with a pulsing timer, but that shouldn't be a big job. We'll see what happens.. Hell, I could even incorporate a simple buzzer into it. I may play with that this weekend. I do have a tendency to overlook the little fuel indicator light and run it closer to dry than I should. So there would actually be some basic practicality for it, unlike the blue light propped up on the dash, which is just hinting the obvious homage to Mad Max.

Justification?: I have not brought myself to strip out the interior more than necessary at this point. I can't bring myself to go total post-apocalyptic beast mode yet. For what it's worth, I could cut a few zipties, unbolt the brackets I made, remove the red LED, and slap the original door interior right back in place and no one would be the wiser. Stripping out the carpet, panels, and fabricating a wire frame bench to replace the backseat is a whole 'nother level.

In my '07 Wrangler I had every reason to do all that: I rarely had doors on it, no floor plugs, the interior console looked like crap and served less purpose for me than my own custom builds, and I was always hauling junk from the junkyard. I made modifications as necessary and it worked well.











There is essentially nothing wrong inside the G except for a couple tears in the driver's seat, a faulty seat belt retractor and window/sunroof motor failures (like everyone else). Granted, there's a 0% probability that I will ever sell this thing; I'll drive it into the ground.

IDK.. thoughts? Thanks, guys.

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NemesisGee (05-20-2016)
Old 04-19-2016, 10:35 PM
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After 182k, I couldn't give a **** what others might think. This is pretty bad ***!
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GringitoLoco (04-19-2016)
Old 04-20-2016, 10:17 AM
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Waiting for the lift kit install on the G
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S 854 (04-20-2016)
Old 04-20-2016, 10:50 AM
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And exo-cage, roof rack, stinger, and winch combo, right? Yeah, I came from a different approach to autos, obviously. My dad dropped his G, I lifted my Jeep.

These pics were a couple years ago before I completed my Jeep build. At the time he had K-Sport coilovers front and rear.





My approach to the G is over the top and unnecessary.. but there's one in every crowd. It's different, but with this many miles, this rusted/beat-up, I have no intention of it being an object of envy. You guys dress your girls very well, so I don't have to. Rough and unsophisticated will do it for me. I may strip the interior down further eventually. I would like more space in the back for hauling junkyard finds. The leather interior dissuades such enjoyment at this time.

Try to understand this, too.. I have no more 'toys' to play with. A year ago I had a couple project cars and my Jeep. In the past I had a tendency to bite off more than I could chew, but these things kind of fell in my lap, too. I had a 1972 RHD Mini from Manchester (swapped to a 1293cc with ralley cam, dual carbs, etc!).. and I chopped a 1966 VW Beetle "Volksrod". I sold both of them and my Jeep in preparation for my move to Argentina.
After that I was left with car-less, project-less and very depressed. I was already eyeing a new car/eventual project in Argentina, but it wasn't meant to be.
You might think I have a couple bucks to throw into the G, given these sales, but I tell you that's not the case. For two years I've also invested in a business startup that has only taken from me. I'm living on savings. This car is a balance of hobby, recreation, and straight-up functional daily driver.















Old 04-20-2016, 11:08 AM
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Sounds like you should've just got another Jeep.

I can see the potential here, but think you need to go full retard with it. Dipping in your toes just isn't pulling it off and looks like crap band-aids vs something intentional. The prerunner treatment would be sweet.






Last edited by LoSt180; 04-20-2016 at 11:18 AM.
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:16 AM
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theres always one guy who does this after every snow storm with the snow piles lol



and i love it. lol
Old 04-20-2016, 11:41 AM
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Sounds like you should've just got another Jeep.
I can see the potential here, but think you need to go full retard with it. Dipping in your toes just isn't pulling it off and looks like crap band-aids vs something intentional. The prerunner treatment would be sweet.
Keep in mind; money is TIGHT. I picked this G up for nearly nothing from my dad; what he would have gotten from a dealer as a trade-in. I can't afford a Jeep, even a used somewhat Wrangler. They hold their value well. I agree with what you're saying, and I could go full post-apocalyptic beastmode with it, but consider this, too:

To put it best, my intent is not to go "Fury Road" with this thing, but simple Road Warrior. Practical, basic, useful, effective and crude. I don't have the ability to do anything extreme, but I want to balance the crudity of the whole thing, too. I'm going to dive into a bit of philosophy here for a minute (understanding we're talking science fiction movies, so not to lose sight of reality). Bear with me...
Mad Max/Road Warrior: My interpretation of Max's Interceptor wasn't "let me make this thing as ridiculous and frightening as possible" it was more like "let me make use of what I have and be efficient in doing so". He was a scavenger with practicality in mind. That's really my intent. As I see it, stripping the interior gave Max's character storage and living room. It was also effective in that he had no rear window and moisture when it did eventually rain would not benefit him. I don't quite have that need, other than for hauling junkyard finds (which I tend to do a lot). I'm a scavenger, even at recycling centers. If I find bed-frame along the road, you better believe it's coming home with me. My [monster] rolling welding/fab table was made from total scrap, and it's glorious. As a cheap welder and hobbyist, it's what I do. Without coming across as a garbage hoarder, I find other uses for what people toss. At the same time, though I am capable of fabbing a roof rack, the G doesn't lend itself to bolt on accessories well. I'd rather not drill holes into the side and roof of this thing. I have considered a simple rally light bar for the front bumper, which I could bolt to the frame. It's not quite the same as a pre-runner bar over the windshield and a rack overhead, however,
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Old 04-20-2016, 11:44 AM
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theres always one guy who does this after every snow storm with the snow piles lol

and i love it. lol
Truth be told, I had to drive 2hrs into PA to wheel my Jeep with my buddies.. when we found a perch for the taking, we took it. This was at my dad's office; not many people here, not showing off. This is wildly tame compared to the angles I'll had my JK at. Given the top heavy imbalance, I'm probably lucky I never flopped it on it's side. Never been on 2 wheels, but on 3 more than I can recall.
Old 04-20-2016, 11:54 AM
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Truth be told, I had to drive 2hrs into PA to wheel my Jeep with my buddies.. when we found a perch for the taking, we took it. This was at my dad's office; not many people here, not showing off. This is wildly tame compared to the angles I'll had my JK at. Given the top heavy imbalance, I'm probably lucky I never flopped it on it's side. Never been on 2 wheels, but on 3 more than I can recall.
my sister just picked one up actually.
and i picked up a z71 silverado. i am having a hard time finding any places to go off road here in jersey...
Old 04-20-2016, 12:05 PM
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my sister just picked one up actually.
and i picked up a z71 silverado. i am having a hard time finding any places to go off road here in jersey...
A few years back a bunch of buddies and I ventured through some NJ state lands boarding a rock quarry in the Pompton Plains area. It was AWESOME wheeling. Seriously heavy stuff- the first time I actually needed my winch for recovery. You couldn't touch it with a stock Wrangler because of clearance issues alone. Sure enough, we were spotted from a distance and had to go to court. Two police officers (one from each boarding town) had to bail their patrol cars and hike the trails to catch up with us. They weren't happy, but honestly we never crossed a marked road or trail, we didn't think we were trespassing. After 2 court visits the case was thrown and we were warned never to return. After that we got memberships at Rausch Creek in PA, and made that trip a couple weekend trips a year. SOme guys go south to the pine barrens, but that never really interested me.
It sucks here in NJ. Everything about it. The roads are enough to dissuade tuners from dropping their cars (unless you're bagging it), there's no place for the wheelers, the laws stifle a lot of play, the traffic and congestion is the pits.. just gotta get out of here.
Old 04-20-2016, 12:50 PM
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damn dude. glad it was nothing serious.

and whats the matter? you dont enjoy dropping $20 in tolls one way to get to a beach you have to pay a day pass for to get on to?lol
Old 04-20-2016, 01:08 PM
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damn dude. glad it was nothing serious.

and whats the matter? you dont enjoy dropping $20 in tolls one way to get to a beach you have to pay a day pass for to get on to?lol
Like most northern NJ kids I knew, I grew up going to Wildwood/Cape May every summer and taking in that experience.. I was great when I was 12 (as far as I recall), but it started deteriorating even in my eyes by the time I was 16. There is less than nothing that I enjoy about the Jersey Shore as an adult. Maybe I've just been spoiled, being fortunate enough to see a real beach a couple times in my life.. I'm not a world traveler in the least, but I've been in the gulf at the southwestern-most edge of Florida, and after stepping into those waters, I vow not to step into the Atlantic (at least north of SC) again. I feel about the NJ shore as I do about snow; don't ever need to see it again. I'm doing everything I can to get out of the northeast before the first fall freeze of 2016. I kind of doubt I'll make it out of here without surviving one more NJ winter, but I can dream. The only ice I need is in my glass.
Old 04-20-2016, 01:40 PM
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hahah well said man
well said.
Old 04-20-2016, 01:42 PM
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btw, any recommendations for places around here to install a silverado leveling kit lol?
Old 04-20-2016, 01:49 PM
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btw, any recommendations for places around here to install a silverado leveling kit lol?
I wish I did, but I've always done everything myself, back to the pavement. The only time I needed a shop was for a custom cycle guy to bend the DOM tubing for my stinger on the Jeep. Stuff like this is usually fairly simple with jacks, jack stands, the right tools, motivation, and a little ingenuity.
It's going to suck to pay someone to install all my new bushings up front. I can't do what I can't do.

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