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My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:23 pm

I hope to maintain this thread appropriately to chronicle the mods, changes, upgrades, down grades :oops: or whatever happens with this truck.
I acquired this Trooper a month ago or so with a blown head gasket. As luck would have it we had a good 2.3l sitting in an 86 Trooper that is gonna get a diesel engine swap sometime in the near future. So I took the 2.3l and transplanted it in. The motor is great now but the transmission was shot. It had HEAVY gear oil in it and most of the bearings were toast. So I got a used trans swapped in.

I put a coat of wax on it. Still looks a bit rough but after another wash and another coat of wax it'll be looking as good as a 25 year old paint job can look.

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The rack you see is a Conn-Ferr rack I picked up last weekend off of Craigslist from a guy with a 1990 Trooper. I spent a day or so with a DA sander and some elbow grease, a could cans of rattle can satin and there it is... I intend to put an expanded metal floor in it soon.

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Thought I would throw in the odometer shot. Just getting broke in good.

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More to come...
Last edited by Bizmarkie on Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:33 pm

Welcome, I love your ride. What size tires are you running and what, if any, suspension mods do you have?

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:48 pm

Sweet, the color is cool, , how's the mpg with the 2.3?

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:55 pm

Nice find! Welcome to the planet!

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 7:57 pm

The 67 miles on the trip odometer are the miles since the swap. So I gotta run through a tank to calculate. :)

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:14 pm

A couple upgrades I made in the last few days.

First is a molle rack for the back door. I currently only have a couple pouches installed and my first aid kit. More to be installed soon. Easy way to keep stuff accessible.
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Then I swapped the shifter knob out for a cooler one. Makes an extra 10 HP. :mrgreen:

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Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:34 pm

One more set for the night...

I made this key chain. Made from vegetable tanned leather. Hand stamped and hand stitched with heavy wax thread. The concho is an actual Texas quarter that I made.
The key ring is a small aircraft wire ring.

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Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 8:51 pm

Awesome leather job. I'd rip that Sony deck out and install a pioneer or alpine. Sony home equipment is top notch. Their mobile stuff is junk.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:06 pm

Good eye Capt'n I didnt even know it was a Sony deck. It doesnt work. Hasnt since I got the truck. I need to look into another deck soon.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Fri Aug 02, 2013 5:38 am

Guess that proves my point. Haha. I'd hit up eBay or Amazon. Pioneer or alpine makes quality units and their prices aren't ridiculous. Online anyway.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Fri Aug 02, 2013 7:39 am

Great to see your Trooper Biz, looking forward to watching your projects!! :)

Jonathan

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:19 pm

Finally I got the roof rack done. And mounted.

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When I got it, it was in poor shape. No rot but lots of love rubs and surface rust. It was decked out with plywood and it was rotted.
I sanded and wire-brushed the bad parts and then 3M scuffed the good parts. Primed and painted with a satin black.
I put expanded metal on the floor of the rack and it too was wire-brushed, primed and then painted to match.

Putting it on was an adventure. It took a couple ratchet straps and a tree for a overhead pulley rigging, but its up there.

I'm digging it. Any thoughts?

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:52 pm

Lookin good man !! You did a nice job on the rack :)

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 8:00 am

Bizmarkie wrote:I'm digging it. Any thoughts?


Absolutely love it!! You did a fantastic job on the restoration, and it looks amazing! :thumbup:

Jonathan

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 3:06 pm

Bizmarkie wrote:Finally I got the roof rack done. And mounted.

Let us know if your gas mileage goes down.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 3:33 pm

I would if I could but I don't have a reference mpg to go by before the roof rack. I only have 95 miles on the truck since I took possession and the roof rack has seen everything since 85 or so.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 7:45 pm

Alright, I'm curious, what's your plan for the rear bumper?

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:09 pm

Today I mounted the Hi-lift brackets and the dirty ol Hi-Lift. I might pull it off and clean it up a bit. Right now I am using a hitch lock to secure it from thieving hands, but I am going to look for another solution I think.

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Capt'n- Bumpers? who needs stinking bumpers?

I think I will go with a two piece rear bumper. Mainly because of this:

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That bad boy is welded all the way around the mount.

This is kind of what I envision:

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I'm not sure how it will evolve. Maybe add some clevis/d-ring mounts where it bolts up.
Who knows? Open to suggestions. Anyone?

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 9:44 pm

Not a bad idea, I'd go out a little further for protection.. Could run a flatbar rib across the top even and still clear the hitch then it's one piece ..

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:02 pm

Good idea Brad. I think a top rib would be good. You think it should run to the edge of the body on the outside?
I also thought that I would add Hi-lift pads/indents toward the ends.
I want to buy/make some sliders as well with Hi-lift points as well. I has seen a post once with a hi-lift and the poster mentioned a tubing attachment. I have yet to see one of those attachments. Anyone know what I'm talking about.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Mon Aug 12, 2013 11:25 pm

For round tubing ?? You could make one with 1x3 or 4 tectangular tube , then notch it and put in a half moon piece..

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Tue Aug 13, 2013 9:17 am

This is where I got the notion of a tubing adapter:

Gizmo42 wrote:Look for an SUV floor jack with 21" lift height. They can be difficult to find but they are out there. And not the ones with extension that screws into it like the Torin, those arent all that stable.

Having grown up in the 70's when all American cars had bumper jacks I well remember the dangers so when it came time to get a farm jack for emergencies I went with Hi-Lift for the better materials. I rarely ever use in front or back though because the whole end can shift and fall over on even a slight amount of slope once both wheels are off the ground. I chock the wheels and use it on my sliders with a tubing adapter.

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from thread: viewtopic.php?f=20&t=71547&p=630920

I asked the op on that thread what it was he was referring to.

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Sat Aug 24, 2013 3:25 pm

Ok I've been wanting to do some leather work in the Trooper for a bit.
So here is a short build of my first leather project on Tortuga.

Turtle leather is illegal and really wouldn't be fitting, I mean I like turtles and the truck is as slow as a three legged turtle, but no turtle leather...
So I took out some vegetable tanned snake embossed leather.
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I pulled the passenger side visor down and brought it in the shop. Dirty, nasty and brittle.
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I took a utility blade and went to town.
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Inside I found, rotting dried out foam. I promptly tossed it and then began the layout.
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I drew a centerline to keep it all straight and cut out the retainer hole. Applied some glue and let it tack up.
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Then I traced out the outline of the metal frame and then rough cut, applied glue and then pressed it together.
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I made sure I had good contact all the way around and then went to making my stitching holes.
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It was completely hand stitched using heavy waxed thread.
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Then I began cleaning up the edges and making them a bit more uniform.
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I broke out the airbrush and choice a two tone brown theme.
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Once it was dry and sealed. I installed it on the truck.
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Overall I am happy with the result. I am going to go and finish the driver's side now. It is a bit more complicated. It will have loops for pens, a flashlight and a slot with a matching insurance carrier. (i'll post completed pics of it too.

Thanks for looking

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Sat Aug 24, 2013 4:52 pm

Hey man, that is absolutely awesome!!! Definitly two thumbs up. I think a leather headliner would be cool, maybe not? Or maybe a leather console cover

Re: My 1988 Trooper- Azul Tortuga

Sat Aug 24, 2013 6:58 pm

Very nice display of custom work and talent !! What else are you going to redo ya think ??
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