Note: OR-Fab is effectively no longer in business, at least not the shop I used several years ago when this project was done. Back then, Mark and Wayne did custom work in addition to their bumpers, tire carriers, etc. Since then, they have split the business and it was bought out by another company. The custom fabrication is no longer available. It is hoped that the pictures and comments provided can be used by you and your 4×4 fab guy if you desire a similar setup on your Jeep.
I wanted to make Lady more capable of handling the new 35″ tires. With the new lift, bigger tires, and Tera 4:1, I knew the stresses put on the axle and other suspension components would be taking their toll. Several of my friends had already managed to rip a bracket or two from the axle or frame. While no one had suffered serious problems as a result, I decided to take a different approach and visit my favorite fab shop, OR-Fab. Like that old saying “You can pay me now or pay me later” was probably wandering around in the back of my mind. I decided to beef things up a bit before things got too serious. Paying Wayne and Mark now would hopefully prevent the need to do it later AND cough up the new bucks for a bent control arm or worse.
My 1st goal was simple. Beef up the D-30 axle housing. Scott K, a local Jeeper, had showed me his front axle setup some time back and I really liked how it looked. I had decided that I would go that line when the time came. My 2nd goal was to improve the survivability of my lower control arm brackets. They had already taken a hit or two on the rocks and one was looking kind of rough. It was only going to get worse with the added capabilities brought to the table with the last build up.
This is the front axle, taken from behind the passenger side tire. You can see the truss that is welded along the length of the axle housing. I am no welding expert, but to me, it looks like the guys did a good job.
Another view of the same area of the front axle. They rattle canned a fresh coat of paint over their work so everything looked new.