New Motobilt YJ Build is Officially Underway
- by Carey Henderson
Building YJ’s was a huge part of Dan DuBose starting a career in the offroad industry. In the late 1990’s Dan was fabricating 4 link suspensions and pioneering the way. Many of the builds were on the Jeep YJ platform. From the builds the interest in building transformed into a full time business called Blue Torch FabWorks (BTF). BTF took the offroad scene by storm in 2001 creating industry leading DIY builder products at a time other companies were still focused on providing bolt on accessories. Well a lot has changed over the years. Dan sold BTF in 2009 and took a break from off-roading until starting Motobilt in 2012.
It is only natural to want to build another YJ. In the start up of Motobilt in 2012 and 2013 the Green YJ was built putting together concepts to make building the YJ for extreme use even easier. Now its time to step the bar up yet again with the new personal YJ build. The build is already generating a lot if interest from customers and other vendors.
The build started with Dan DuBose taking a stock 1987 Jeep YJ and completely disassembling it. In the beginning a lot of questions were going around the shop. What would be? More than a month was spent 3D Scanning the Jeep YJ to generate data to be used during the build process. I think you will see this data collection is paying off.
This week, Rob 'Bender' Park and Dan DuBose got to work cutting up the frame to begin prototyping parts and get this custom build on the way.
The team involved in this build consists of Bender, Dan and Bruce. Together a lot of ideas are getting discussed and great ideas are coming to life on the build. So far the team has designed and fabricated a new 15” stretch back half frame kit, replacement high clearance rear inner fenders and a 15” stretch version, boat side rockers with interior sheet metal panels in stock length ad 15” stretch. The front half frame kit for the Jeep TJ was updated with the 3D scan data on the YJ to also fit the YJ.
One of the biggest developments is the next evolution of 4 link suspension mounts for the Jeep YJ and TJ platform. Always advancing and doing better things Dan set out to offer a triangulated front and rear system to make it super easy for others to build a world class rock crawler suspension.
Another goal was to design a new gas tank to work with the 15” stretch back half frame kit. The new fuel cell fits under the body with a capacity in the 20 gallon range. We plan to offer this for the LJ back half frame kit as well.
We will be posting a lot more pics and information on this build. Be sure to follow us on Instagram for behind the scenes pictures and videos of this Jeep YJ build. Also uou can follow photos and videos of the build as it progresses by visiting and bookmarking this page. You can also check out the Motobilt YouTube channel and subscribe to see any new videos.