Chop top XJ..with Exo cage... End to an Era..

Discussion in 'Build Threads' started by BRUISER, Jan 6, 2008.

  1. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    Raleigh
    Well after my last trip to Tellico I smashed the front fender, rear tailgate, rear fender, and rear passenger glass..I decided it was time to finally Chop the XJ .

    But I have not liked the flat look of what I have seen on other XJ's that have been chopped so I took a differnet route.

    I decided to use the XJ rear tailgate as my back glass to keep the factory curved angles, then once we got to looking at it we decided why not make the tailgate still open

    so yup I cut the back used the rear tailgate and the tailgate will stil open ( just because )

    Here are some pics of before, during and hope to have it done by the end of this week.

    We started Thursday night by stripping the interior, then Friday we started by cutting and getting to work.

    Here we go.. I have lots of pics
     
  2. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

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    Location:
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    Here are few pics of what it looked like when I started

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  3. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Raleigh
    So next we had to take out the glass, took off the rear hatch and then started cutting :)

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  4. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Here is where it got interesting..

    I grafted on the rear edge off the roof to my cut so that way we could keep the hinges and the angle of the tailgate so it would open correct.. I also kept the rear support beam inside the roof and moved that up so now the "c" pillar is stronger then it ever was..

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  5. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    So after we got the top of the tailgate fitted we then focused on the bottom half.. I decided to make the bottom half solid so to help with water and keeping the inside of the Jeep sealed.

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  6. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

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    Location:
    Raleigh
    after much debate I finally decided how I wanted to make the sides of the bed and we went at it.

    You can see from the pics we used a brake to bend the steel so it fit the curves I wanted correct and we also bent a lip at the top for strenght that attached to the inside of the outside fender.

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  7. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    The last 2 pics so the tailgate off getting ready to get plated so it will seal against the bottom panel we made

    also last pic shows the bottom half with the lip we welded on so the weather stripping can be connected to seal the hatch

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  8. dyer91

    dyer91 Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Greensboro
    great looking work, lots of thought put in to this one
     
  9. yager

    yager Better Faster Stronger

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    Wake Forest, NC
    Looks great !!
     
  10. Joel

    Joel Well-Known Member

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    Mar 20, 2005
    Location:
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Nice job! I really like what you did. :beer:
     
  11. Bullardbs

    Bullardbs Well-Known Member

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    May 7, 2007
    Location:
    Thomasville, NC
    Looks good Jeep should make that a factory option
     
  12. etjeep

    etjeep New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2005
    Location:
    Cary, NC
    Nice work guys! I like your attention to detail...
     
  13. Caver Dave

    Caver Dave Just holdin' it down here in BFV Moderator

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    :cool:

    been melting a little myself...
     
  14. RatLabGuy

    RatLabGuy You look like a monkey and smell like one too

    Joined:
    May 18, 2005
    Location:
    Churchville, MD
    Nice!
    Are you concerned about extra body flex w/ so much of the original "box" cut out?
    Although, I figure putting that half-wall in below the liftgate helps out quite a bit.
     
  15. wheelNC94GC

    wheelNC94GC Well-Known Member

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    May 19, 2007
    Location:
    Asheville
    Looks great! I like it alot
     
  16. chromerunner

    chromerunner The Scrambler

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    Jun 18, 2006
    Location:
    Biscoe NC
    damn....clean and done well from the looks...one day ill be doing the same. nice work!
     
  17. Rich

    Rich Asshole at large

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    Location:
    Central PA
    Wow, that looks realy cool.. great job!

    though intiially, I was thinking you were FINALLY going to put a cage in that thing...
     
  18. Papa_Jon

    Papa_Jon non speller

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  19. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

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    Thanks for the compliments everyone..

    As for Flex nope not at all.

    If you could see it, you would understand the back is 100% stronger then it ever was..
     
  20. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

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    that is also going to happen with this build.. I have 200 feet of tube just waiting to go on it :)
     
  21. DOUGHBOYDD2500HD

    DOUGHBOYDD2500HD New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Location:
    RTP
    Nice Pics!

    So you made it stronger and it looks better and you did all that work and it really shows. Nice chop job! But, instead of cutting down on weight it will now weigh even more with all that new metal and tube right?? How much will that XJ weigh overall??
     
  22. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Raleigh
    I am sure it will weight more, but honestly I am not a weight person.. my XJ is probably one of the heavier Jeeps around here and yet I can still walk up most trails I try.. so wieght is not an issue for me..

    Plus if I want to cut weight maybe "I" should go on a diet :)
     
  23. OBX Fisherman

    OBX Fisherman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Location:
    Winston-Salem
    Nice fab work! Good to see a chopped XJ with a finished and professional look on the body work.
     
  24. paradisePWoffrd

    paradisePWoffrd Recovering Project Junkie

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    Location:
    Newton, NC
    i really like that look... are you going to get rid of the factory taillights that stick out for maybe a set of recessed LEDs?
     
  25. BRUISER

    BRUISER silent.. but deadly Moderator

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    Thanks.. I put a bunch of thought into making it look good.
     

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