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2023 JLUR 4xe
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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
I’ve been spending so much time fixing up the Jeep that I have yet to take it off-roading. Finally, I plan on getting it out this weekend while the wife is away. In preparation, I added on a FAD skid, just in case….

The stock skid is really easy to get to. You can see 3 of the 4 mounting locations here. I was on the last screw but the screw on the opposite side of the one shown here was a little hard to reach with my bear paw hands.


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Once the FAD Skid was removed, you can see the components it protects. I imagine breaking any of that would be pretty bad news.


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I went with the Rock Hard FAD Skid. Like usual, I painted it Surf Blue to match the other bling underneath. You can see my steering stabilizer relocation bracket on the table. That will go on tomorrow, hopefully.


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You can see the difference between the OEM skid and the Rock Hard. This new armor is way beefier.


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It was a 5 minute job with only 4 bolts. The hardest part was wiggling my big hands into position to get the passenger side bolt. The other 3 bolts were nothing. It really took longer to get set up and find the tools than to install the plate, but I think it worked out just fine.


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From the rear, you can see how well it covers up the components


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I have to admit, the FAD Skid isn’t very visible, so it’s mostly my OCD that made me paint it, but while few people will notice it, I will know it’s there and it just makes me happy.
 

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I noticed the same thing with the defroster. Read about it, it seems to be a known problem since the JK, such an easy fix for Jeep to do. But I did not known that those caps would fit, ordered the same thing .
Thank you for the idea and link.
 

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I noticed the same thing with the defroster. Read about it, it seems to be a known problem since the JK, such an easy fix for Jeep to do. But I did not known that those caps would fit, ordered the same thing .
Thank you for the idea and link.
I did the same hack. I used 10 squares total. 6 solid in the middle.
 

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Thanks for that I’m going to have to try to rearrange the squares a bit to fine tune it. It’s improved but could still be better with the squares I have. Maybe your arrangement will work better.
There was a youtube vid I watched where the person did a bunch of testing and found the best pattern for them was (IIRC):
XXOOXXXXXXOOXX
X=blocked. O=open.
 

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2023 JLUR 4xe
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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
She's finally been broken in! Thanks to @kah.mun.rah for inviting me up to Hungry Valley for Storm Clouds' maiden voyage! It was a blast and I plan on writing up a review of some of the things I've added on. Definitely had some saving graces.

For now, here are some pictures from the adventure and I'll get working on the rest later.

Here we are waiting to head out after dropping the puppies off at the groomer.
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Hungry Valley was beautiful, and it was empty, considering it was a holiday weekend.

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I'm ready to go and see what this 4xe can do

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We also went with @kah.mun.rah junior, and his jeep, and met up with another friend there.

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I did get the chance to get a little dirty. I know better than to get into mud, considering the mess it can make inside the engine bay, but I just couldn't say no.

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You can see the end result is not going to be fun to clean

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It was a blast and I learned quite a few lessons (besides stay out of the mud).
 

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Discussion Starter · #49 ·
After having several days to think about my trip, a few things have come to mind.

First of all, this 4xe is amazingly capable. Yes, I'm on 37's and lifted, but at no point did I ever feel a lack of power. My biggest fear when getting this Jeep was that the 4.10 gearing would limit it, once I lifted it and put it on bigger tires. The torque is insane, and I can honestly say that I haven't noticed a difference. Even going up the freeway on the way there, through the pass, which is all uphill, I never once felt it lagging or feeling sluggish. While crawling up rocks and trails, it chugged along like it was nothing. I was truly impressed.

Remember that no matter how careful you are, unless it's just a flat road, going offroad will damage your rig, even if you're careful. So, with that in mind, get some skid plates. One of the first things I added on to my Jeep was rear LCA skid plates. The control arms and shocks are so dangerously low, that it seemed inevitable that they would get hit and were just waiting for a devastating situation.

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Sure enough, first run on the trails, and that's the spot that got damaged. Without that there, I can only imagine what might have happened.

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Also, don't be afraid of scratching your rims. It's a Jeep, think of it as badges of honor that show the world that you actually use it for its intended purpose. (That and the fact that you may not be good at picking lines....) At first, I thought I would get them repaired, but like a cool scar, they look kind of good and give the Jeep some street cred.

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These fender gaps are annoyingly adept at attracting small pebbles. I've read about it before, and I have some rubber tubing in my garage to fix it, but I never got around to installing it. Now I know that the hype is real! What a pain in the butt to have to run a credit card through the gaps while airing up just to get rid of things that shouldn't be getting stuck so easily in a fender. Come on Jeep, this is an easy fix for something that is a predictable and well-known result.

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Mud is terrible. It's a lot of fun to make a big splash and see your Jeep covered in dirt but cleaning it up afterwards was a nightmare. It took 2 washes and a lot of elbow grease. Let's not talk about the engine bay. I didn't take pictures of that, because I was so irritated, but trust me on this one, don't do it if you don't want to put in the work afterwards.

Electric mode on the trails is incredible. It's so nice to be able to hear nature while climbing up the hills. You can hear your spotter clearly and it just feels better with the windows down.

The Clayton suspension was awesome. No creaks, no issues with flex, it rode beautifully. I'm running the Fox 2.0's and initially, I've been thinking they run a bit soft on the road. However, off road, they rode really nicely. I had zero complaints. I'm still trying to decide on if I want to upgrade to Falcon 3.3 or 3.5's in the future, but that will be when I get the chop kit and fender liners. I need to enjoy what I have for now.

Go with friends. It was a blast, and I would have still enjoyed it alone but going with a group made it so much better. It was fun to watch other people try obstacles and to have them there to cheer you on. Another plus is you can use them as photographers! Pics or it didn't happen!

Finally, don't forget to disconnect those sway bars. I'm new to wheeling, so I kept forgetting to check if they had reconnected or not, and I know they did a few times from going too fast down the trail. Things would have been so much easier if they had been disconnected and I would have gotten better pictures too!
 
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