Sedole's Gen 3 - the Iron Hog

sedole

Member
Did a little change to my bumper to make it look a bit less like a jeep. Also took the time to smooth the rough transition line that I left last time with some jb weld.





Compared to before it is definitely less jeep. I'm hoping it will also divert a little more air away from the wheel well...that's a bit more of a stretch, but it definitely can't hurt!


I also started trimming the mopar sliders I got and ended up deciding to scrap the retrofit idea. The kickouts themself are a good length, but the more rectangular portion is just way too tall which makes everything a bit more bulky than I would like.


Update:
Did a little drive for the first time since putting the bumper back. It actually made a difference! My ears detect noticeably less wind/road noise at freeway speeds.
 
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sedole

Member
Manifolds are in! Decided to give the China made copies a chance (rather than shell out for oem). Shoutout @SONICMASD for sourcing and shipping them out to me! The units themselves seem just fine and they don't have cracks soooo 100% better than what I've got right now!


Started with the passenger side since it's easier to access.
Turns out this side is also cracked rather badly as well..



The manifolds require you to install studs. Strap them down or lock them with a vice otherwise it's a huge struggle..


It's a perfect fit!


My egr pipe was missing the metal gasket and had a blob of gasket maker instead of an actual gasket.
I made one out of a beer can.



I'll tackle the driver side tomorrow. Shouldn't be too bad.
 

sedole

Member
Driver side manifold today. Definitely a little more time consuming, especially since I ran into a few snags along the way. Maybe about 6 hours of easy paced work.

First road block: The stud on the exhaust manifold started backing out then suddenly could not be turned anymore...Then I snapped a bolt on the exhaust pipe as well.... Fortunately I was able to tetris the whole thing out.


Also I was greeted by some super booger looking welds. I don't know where the previous owner lady took this to get a new cat welded on, but I definitely don't recommend that shop! I started grinding down the welds and decided that was just going to take too long and because the welds were so boogery it would end up looking ugly anyways. So I welded it to be visually air tight and slapped on some paint. Didn't bother taking pics...trust me it's ugly.


Driver manifold was of course, very cracked:



Instead of trying to wrestle the nut off the stud, I opted to chop it off with a recip saw. And instead of drilling out the remaining bolt on the flange, I gave her a quick zip with the dremel and used my trusty chisel and hammer. Fortunately I have a bunch of leftover nuts and bolts that I've collected over the years and found some that fit.


At this point I tried to cheat and put the whole thing back in pre assembled, but I just could not tetris it back up.. So I loosely bolted that exhaust pipe portion up first and tried to get the manifold on..that didn't work either. What I found to work the best is to wedge the exhaust pipe roughly into position..don't bolt it..then drop the manifold in, bolt up the lower portion, and then finangle the whole contraption to the studs of the head and wrestle the downstream exhaust flanges into position.
Finally got it in..


Aaand put all the puzzle pieces back together.




Fired her up and ooooh boy does she purr! She runs so much more smooth and quiet. I'm interested to see how it will affect my driving exhaust note. Another thing of note: most chinese made exhaust bits seem to be coated in rust preventative oil of sorts so on your first couple starts you'll get a burning smell and smoke right off the bat. Normal, and no surprise it happened with these as well. After idling for 20 minutes the smoke and smell already started to lessen. I anticipate it going away after a little bit of driving.

So now the big question; longevity. I've heard mixed reports about these units. I'm currently sitting at 184,421 miles. If these last me until next summer/to 200,000 miles I'd be happy. Anything more is gravy on my biscuits.
 

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sedole

Member
Small stuff today. My cheapo led spots up front have started letting in moisture. Since I would be taking it apart, I decided to remake the lenses using some amber plexiglass since I much prefer the color for night and snow/dust driving. I used some 1/8" plexiglass. Sealed everything back up water tight using some clear silicone. The light output is a bit more yellow than amber, but I'm ok with it. The color before was a really harsh blue/white so this is much easier on my eyes.





Also did a drive out to the high desert for some remote shooting/wheeling. With all the 'rona stuff going on, I thought it would be a good time to give the wife a refresher, and since we drove out all that way....might as well wheel a little since we were out there..haha
Of course I forgot to take pics, but it was a fun time. It was about an hours drive each was plus we did about 20 miles off the pavement. Manifolds are holding up great so far. The smell went away after the 4th or 5th heat cycle. With the non-cracked manifolds there is noticeably more midrange torque and the exhaust is notably quieter. The little bumper add ons that I did also really seem to make a positive difference (at least audibly) in aerodynamics. Don't know about mpgs as I was hauling 80-90 mph the whole way up and down as well as ripping the throttle off the pavement. I did 13mpg for the whole trip haha.. The newfound midrange torque is addicting for sure.

I also don't think I've really had the rig on higher speed washboard type driving since I lowered the front spring perch. I'm definitely happy I decided to do so. The spring rate feels just about right at the moment. It no longer feels oversprung like a pogo stick.
 

sedole

Member
Bought some steel to start making a skid for the front diff. Used 1/8 inch. Nothing fancy, but she'll get the job done--and cheap at that! Mounted her up then took a quick glamour shot since we had a break in the rain.





Speaking of rain, socal was getting a huge storm cycle going through. It rained for 8 days or so which meant a ton of snow in the mountains. The peaks were estimated to receive upwards of 4 feet! (which is a lot for us)
My wife and I absolutely love the snow and we've been itching to go outside, so we decided to venture out responsibly. 20 minutes on some back roads and we're at the trailhead. Very easy trail, but we got to get some fresh tracks in the 16 inches or so of fresh snow. Got up to about 5800 feet before I decided we should play it safe and turn back. I probably could've made the rest of the trail, but we had already gotten stuck once and I didn't want to chance getting stuck and needing a rescue...that would be a bit irresponsible these days. Speaking of getting stuck, this gave me a chance to use the $40 xbull recovery tracks that I recently picked up. Had to reposition and drive over them maybe half a dozen times to get out. Can't say I recommend these, just look at those cracks...but they are cheap and do look cool strapped to your spare tire if you're a poser...like me ;)







The next day I ended up getting a call from a friend needing a rescue. He done drowned his bronco and is stuck ~15 miles from pavement. Decided to call up another friend to tag along. In a different vehicle of course, because social distancing. Fortunately the skies were clear, but boy was it muddy.





And there she is... The "puddle" separating us was deceptively deep. Like he said he went in straight through the middle and it was well over his tires (35s). I went to the side as much as I could, but I was still fording with water nearly to the top of the lower door trim. He opened the hood and I could tell right away it was bad news. His intake sits about 40" high and there was muddy water in it and the filter was completely soaked as well. Turned it on for a few seconds and it's knocking real bad. At that moment we decided we were gonna have to tow it out. I tried first (cause I wanted to prove the might of the montero haha) to no real success. I moved him maybe 15 yards. We were in maybe a foot of really slick snow with really really slick mud underneath. Raptor's turn. The raptor ended up struggling as well. After maybe 45-60 minutes of digging and pulling, we finally got to some better ground and started the long tow out, which other than being long, was fairly uneventful.





Although I wasn't able to pull him out (which I attribute to us only having a tow strap--not a snatch strap--and me not wanting to chance damaging my rear frame), I was extremely impressed with the montero's abilities these last two days. She was an absolute beast just ripping through the snow. I also got a chance to test out the new skid. During some of the driving through the untouched snow I didn't notice a hidden tree stump and managed to high center my front end on it. I was able to reverse off just fine, but I'm very glad the skid was there. It took a slight bend, but no other damage than that!

Got back home and gave the rig a good cleaning. I don't know why some people love mudding so much...that was a pain to clean. And considering I had to drive in some real deep water, I decided to change out the fluids in my diffs, transfer case, and transmission as well. Ran down to the local autozone which is surprisingly still open (all the other major parts stores are closed in my area). Slim pickings in terms of fluids available so I grabbed some 75w-90 mobil1 full synth gl-5 for the diffs and some 75w-90 valvoline conventional gl-4 for the transfer case (there was no synthetic gl-4 available). I also ordered some aisin sp3 from ebay...still waiting for that to come in. Didn't take pics cause it's not all that interesting to report, but I did find a little water in the front diff and transfer case. Sitting at around 184,7xx for my future reference. One of these days I'll need to extend all the breather lines.

Decided to do a little reinforcing of the skid I made since it was off for the fluid exchange. Just added some 1/8" thick flat stock to the sides to give it a little more strength.

 

Inyo_man

Explorer
Looks like you had some fun!
Too bad you didn't have an actual snatch strap or winch...you would have made quick work of the stuck rig with a winch.
If you do end up getting a snatch strap, I'd suggest using a bridle on both recovery points and attaching the snatch strap to it...this spreads the load out a bit and is easier on the recovery points.
Nice job on the bash plates!
Glad to hear some folks are getting off-pavement!
Cheers
 

sedole

Member
It was a fun time for sure! We've been pretty good about staying home these last 30 odd days, so it felt very good to get out and get outside.
I have been thinking about a winch..still trying to come up with a design that will integrate well with my bumper. For now I've been looking at kinetic recovery ropes. (I've been watching a lot of Matt's off road recoveries on youtube haha) I do have a bridle for the front, but the rear I just hook up to the uhaul hitch.

Some small stuff today:
Added a little reinforcement to the front skid and extended the mounting slots as they've always been a little short since I last modified it. The reason I did this because the plate took a little bow/bend in it during my last outing. Hammered it back straight..ish...and welded on some 1/8" flat bar. I know it's not a very burly thing, but it will do the job for me until I decide to make a completely new one.



And dropped the trans crossmember to 1) tighten the bolts on the trans pan as the shop who did the trans install didn't tighten them enough and it seeps oil, and 2) to weld some nuts on in preparation for a trans skid plate!

 

sedole

Member
Exchanged all the trans fluid today. Fluid was still pretty clear (as to be expected), but there was a tiny bit of water that came out, so glad I decided to change it out. Aisin sp3. Also my next attempt at some sliders arrived in the mail! After a quick mock-up, they appear like they will work out great. As always, I turned to the jeep aftermarket to find these.



Drove the truck around the block a few times to get her up to temp to properly check the trans fluid. When I pulled back into the garage it was smoking and smelled like burning coolant. What's that old saying? Fix one thing and another thing shall break? Thus is the Mitsubishi way.
Fortunately it was pretty easy to find. One of the hoses near the rear of the engine had a small tear in it. Went down to autozone to try to find a hose, but nothing was similar enough to work. Decided to just join some pieces together....hopefully I didn't just create a point of failure down the road... Anyways, while the coolant was drained I decided to flush the front and rear heater cores with the garden hose. Lots of small bits came out as well as a ton of murky water from the rear. The front improved a little, but wow the rear which used to be completely cold is now piping hot!! I'm pleased with that.


 

sedole

Member
Alright, more on the "sliders". I'm gonna stop calling them that. I've been deceived haha...Oh well, I paid so little money I'm really not mad and honestly I probably won't ever actually use a super burly slider for what it's made for. After working on these all day, I've decided they are more like....stronger side steps lol. Worked on the passenger side today. Chopped off the mounts for the jeep and cut/measured/mocked-up a bunch to get it where I wanted to match with the stock running board mounts. I'm going to call this phase 1. After I get the driver side made to match I plan to add some gussets to the stock legs and some plating to reinforce the steps a bit for phase 2. My phase 3 plan is to reintegrate the original step lights.



As far as strength goes, these will be just fine for me. At the end of the day, I don't intend to add supports to the frame rails, so the weak link will be the factory running board attachment points. They'll make a great step and provide some additional protection to deflect some things, but I'm definitely not going to be able to go out and do some tank turns or come down hard on rocks or throw a hi-lift on these without taking damage. I jacked up the vehicle as high as the jack + 2x4s would go and it seemed to take the weight ok. Another inch or so and it would've been off the ground. No bending of the step at all. With the planned reinforcements I think it will add a little more strength as well. I lose the appearance of having lots of ground clearance, but the fuel tank and transmission crossmember still hang a little lower than these.





 
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sedole

Member
Didn't feel like working on the step for the driver side today, so decided to knock out the trans bash plate instead. Like the oil pan plate, I used 1/8" steel with some reinforcements. Because this new plate will cover a cat I also decided to drill some holes for ventilation.




Not too shabby for a self-taught amateur if I do say so myself!

Anyways, started with this...and decided to add an extension on the passenger side to protect the vital coolant lines. It probably would've been fine as is, but I've already busted them one time so I don't want to take any more chances. I went a bit overboard with the gussets on the extension...and probably have just created a water trap... Maybe I'll drill a drain hole or two at some point...maybe I won't.

Also notice how I didn't plan my mounting holes properly and had to add on two little tabs for the rear holes...measure two times, cut once....








So between the two plates I just made, I probably spent 120-130 in materials and together about 40 lbs of weight: 17 for the oil pan plate, 23 for the trans. Not too shabby at all.

On another note, I've decided that I'm very happy with these shogun cupholders now that I've gotten to use them a bit more. The tray, while shallow, does an excellent job keeping up to two iphone XRs in place. Even when off roading. The cupholders themselves also actually keep your drinks in place. Perfect for those bubble teas if you're an ABG like me! ha ha 😅



I've also just given the rig a nickname! The gen 3s have always reminded me of something but I couldn't put my finger on it until this afternoon. For some reason I always had the word rhino in my head, but that just wasn't it...then it hit me! The Iron Hog from maplestory!

 

sedole

Member
Back to the strong steps today. Phase 2, driver side. Welded the arms on, fully welded up the seams, added gussets to the arms, and a top plate. It got a little bit late on me and I like to be considerate of my neighbors, so didn't quite get to finish. I want to add 3 perpendicular pieces underneath the top plate for more support (as pictured by the cardboard cutout). Will finish the supports then make the passenger side match tomorrow and then see what I can do with those lights...



 

sedole

Member
Nicely done, those welds are not too shabby either, especially for a flux core machine.
Thanks for the kind words! 🙏

Finished adding those supports to the steps and painted everything up in rustoleum bedliner. Very happy with how they turned out, and the reinforcements I added definitely seemed to strengthen them up overall. Both the steps together weight 45lbs. Not much more than the original equipment..





Took a nice little break on projects for the weekend to visit some friends up on the central coast as I'll be moving out of CA to CO next week. It was a fun weekend of easy trails and hanging out on his family ranch. Didn't take the montero as it has developed a leak from the rad...just another thing I need to fix/modify before we move :rolleyes:
We're moving into an apartment and I will still have a garage, but they have a lot more rules and stuff so I probably won't be able to get away with projects involving cutting metal and welding all the time so I'm trying to finish everything now lol. There's also a rule saying no automobile repairs, but I figure they just don't want junker/project cars sitting for months and months in the shared parking lot all the time. I plan to do all the work inside the garage with the door closed.


 
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sedole

Member
Took a break from work in the garage to go buy a new wifey-mobile. We settled on a 2011 Touareg VR6 Lux. Private party sale and we got it for a steal. So far I'm actually really impressed with this thing. It's nice!! We got it 3-4k below the average market price due to a dent in the quarter panel. I was able to buff out nearly all the scratches and pull out the dent to look 90% perfect with my PDR tools. Just needs a little touch up paint and she'll be right as rain! I'm now considering pulling the trailer to CO with this instead of the montero. The trailer will be light, sub 2,500 lbs probably, but I'm sure the extra power and much higher tow rating (7,700 lbs!!!) of the Touareg will make going up and down the i70 a breeze.



After spending the day cleaning it thoroughly and blacking out the emblems (per wifey's request!), got back to the montero.
New denso radiator to replace my leaky koyorad one. I also had an aisin thermostat sitting around that I couldn't quite remember why I bought it...decided to throw that on too since all the coolant would be out anyways. Not that I've changed that many radiators in my life, maybe a dozen or so, but this install was by far the easiest I've done. Oh, also I noticed that I'm missing the lower fan shroud...gonna need to track down one of those.

 

sedole

Member
Very busy last 2 weeks! Blacked out the wifey-mobile, per request.



Paid a shop to install new OEM lower ball joints for me since I didn't have the time. Buy once cry once friends. My proforged units lasted all of 2,000 miles.

And a sh!t ton of packing...interrupted here and there by friends dropping in to say goodbye before we leave. I grossly underestimated how much crap we had, so I upgraded to a uhaul 6x12 instead. Fortunately this one comes with surge brakes which actually helped a ton! Downside is we ended up around 4,000 lbs. Started off towing with the Iron Hog. She happily did it, but did not want to go faster than 63. Braking was not confidence inspiring. Ended up handing off to the t-reg. WOW, what an improvement! The t-reg would just pull and pull and pull! Even up to 90 mph she had more to give...not that I tried, of course. 😅 And mmmmphhh, those factory brembos! 😙👌 Interestingly, at speeds below 40, the montero had a lot more grunt and got the trailer up and moving much easier. Anyways, did like 900 miles+ with the t-reg happily at 75 the whole way. Did not skip a beat. Montero didn't skip a beat either on the drive. And either my area of socal just had really sh!t gas, or the techron cleaner has got some super magical snake oil in it, but I was getting 16-17mpg on 91 all the way going 75mph. That's rather good for my rig!





Also, cannot complain about my new local gas prices!! a 3/4 fill up of 91 for only $30?!?! Hell yes!



Anyways, just been spending the last couple weeks unpacking and buying more furniture for the new place. Renting a 2 bed/2 bath with attached garage apartment for now. Rental prices are crazy high here for anything nice and in a decent area so we'll definitely be looking to buy once I get a more long term job sorted out. The garage is narrow, but I'm happy to at least have a garage! Lots of rules here so I probably won't be able to do much metal working, and I'm not supposed to be doing "automobile repair" either, but the wording is tricky and seems like they don't want that in the parking lots... Either way, I blacked out the windows of the garage. What they know won't hurt em, right? Haha



With either car fully forwards I still have 6-7 feet of space which is nice.


 
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