Author Topic: ImNoSaint's GEN 2.5 Build  (Read 14814 times)

ImNoSaint

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ImNoSaint's GEN 2.5 Build
« on: May 18, 2017, 07:28:34 AM »
2/13/2017



I bought this 2.5 with 121,234 miles on the odo for $2900. Itís been sitting in the Southern Utah sun for at least two summers. The car came from City of Industry, California and was bought by the PO in St. George, Utah in 2004. So, no rust issues. It appears to have never left pavement. Previous to these pics I removed the running boards and put new rubber on, Pathfinders 32X11.5R15. All transfer case fluids were changed along with the first of three quick oil changes with a Seafoam flush to clean out the variable lifters.



The seller indicated that he bought the Monty from a shop eight months previous where the PO had them replace the timing belt, TB tensioner, valve stem guides, water pump, all related gaskets, hoses and belts. The PO then couldnít pay the bill, so the shop liquidated the Monty after it sat there for several months. All the work appears legit upon inspection, lots of new parts under the hood, but Iíd sure feel better with a piece of paper in my hand from the shop telling me so.



The interior needs a handful of tiny instrument panel lights, the power driverís seat only moves vertically, the front Infinity speakers are finite, but outside of that itís cherry. I was surprised to find that the middle row seats work as they were engineered to (something lost along the way to GEN III), as does the sunroof. And having been a detailer in my much earlier years, the fact that it appears no children were ever transported in this vehicle is a big plus. Despite the usual wear on the driverís seat, the interior is pristine. Score.




1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Interior Mods - Part One
« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2017, 07:39:46 AM »
03/03/2017



Most of the build hours so far have been dedicated to the interior, not a bad mid-winter project to do, especially without a garage. Many of the existing interior issues have been solved, from replacing instrumentation cluster lamps to installing LEDs in all the interior lighting fixtures, making a remarkable difference. Still to solve is a wiring work-around on the driver power seat - its only functions are seat tilt forward and seat height adjustments. The gremlin is in the switch so I'll trace the 12V power routing to the appropriate motors and add toggle switches to by-pass the factory switch. UPDATE: I've disassembled the switch and thoroughly cleaned all the inner switch contacts with electrical cleaner solvent and the switch works fine now.

If you follow us on Cornering Consciousness you know that we journey with two Goldens, Ginger and Maryann. Other than these two, we're empty nesters, so as we've done in the Gen3 and the H3, the middle seat has been eliminated and I installed a dog deck.



This quick mod makes traveling with these two so much more pleasant, easy to clean, and more comfortable for them. It also opens up a lot more room for gear, not to mention lightening the GVW by 140 pounds or so with the elimination of the jump seats as well.



I have two 41"x28" Safari Straps cargo nets from the H3 build that are now secured to seatbelt anchors, OS handles and installed D-rings creating a barrier between the cargo area and the dog deck,



...as well as a ceiling net to hold the BOB and other lightweight gear and jackets. Keeps things up and out of the dog hairicane.



There's ample room for a drawer system and fridge/freezer, so for the time being the extra kit for our trips is stowed in pouches and packs pilfered from the H3 build.



One of many changes in this build approach is the axe in the back. Both of the previous 3s had 28" chopping axes mounted to the rear door or interior panel.



It's a Camillus Camtrax 3-in-1 hatchet with a folding saw blade and a hammer head opposite the blade.



Also making the migration from the H3 is the MOLLE panel with a First Aid and trauma pouch. I'm building a fold-down utility table that this MOLLE panel will eventually mount to.

1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Reverse Light Upgrade - Part One
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2017, 07:46:10 AM »
03/07/2017



The back-up lamps on the 2.5 are more of a suggestion of light than actual practical illumination, so I decided to do quick and inexpensive upgrade.

I've had good luck with CREE style LEDs previously, as long as I replaced all the hardware with stainless. I came across these NiLight 18W flush mount flood lights and thought I'd roll the dice and give them a try. Eighteen bucks, why not?

The install required trimming a bit of the opening for the stock lamps since the NiLight height is about a quarter inch taller.



Remove the housing.



Then remove the lamp from the housing. I clipped the the socket off from the wires.



Before fitting clean the area around the opening to remove the footprint from the previous housing.



I used a jig saw with a metal cutting blade to score the bottom edge of the opening, creating "teeth" that will be pulled to match the height requirement of the new housing.



Using a pair of ViseGrips, grab a tooth and slowly move it vertically until it breaks off.





Test fit the opening.










« Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 07:59:31 AM by ImNoSaint »
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Reverse Light Upgrade - Part Two
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2017, 07:53:23 AM »


I finished prepping the factory wiring with a pair of butt splices. Yeah, butt splices. Sue me.



On the NiLight side of the wiring I put on a sleeve of 1/4 inch heat shrink over the wires and outer sheath.



And then added two more pieces of heat shrink that will shroud the butt connectors.



Finish the splice, black to black.



Slide the two pieces of heat shrink over the butt connectors and heat 'em up.



Slide the remaining heat shrink to create a sheath from the fixture insulation to the connectors.



Add some split loom conduit, picking up about an inch beyond the factory conduit and tape the length back to the fixture.



Install the NiLight housing and mark a pilot hole for the first mounting bolt.



Drill, Baby.



With the pilot bolt tightened, drill the remaining three using the housing as a guide. Attach the remaining bolts, which are stainless. Surprise.

I finished the install by zip-tying the conduit in place above the frame and by adding marine silicone around the exposed edge of the bumper (behind the housing) to stave off rust.
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Reverse Light Upgrade - Part Three
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2017, 07:55:29 AM »


Tough to be scientific about these pics of the light emission from these new fixtures, but for reference they were taken at 400 ASA at 1/8 of a second at an f8, the closest exposure I could find within a reasonable ASA to what my eye was seeing.






1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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LED Conversion
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2017, 07:58:24 AM »
03/10/2017



At nineteen years-old, there are some old oxidized electrical connections that don't, um, connect. Maybe conduct is a better word for it. When I started sorting out the 2.5 the only lamps that worked in the interior were the front door courtesy lights. With everything apart I cleaned contacts and wiggled switches and got all the circuits illuminated, but the interior was still pretty dark.



I ordered ten 31mm 12SMD LED lamps and replaced all the tungsten lamps and now it feels like a full moon inside.







This really improved the cargo area lighting, though I think I'll add a couple of parallel fixtures just above the sliding windows.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2017, 08:00:08 AM by ImNoSaint »
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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The Franklin Rack
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2017, 08:07:04 AM »
03/13/2017



This build will have more to do on the interior than the exterior and I'm trying to apply lessons learned from previous builds, one of which for our purposes, is that we don't need a huge roof rack (famous last words). This being the case, I went economy on top to put more money to the interior (drawer, stove and fridge system) and picked up a Rage Powersports low profile cargo basket for $104.99 on Amazon - the reason I'm calling it the Franklin Rack. That being said, it's an easier alternative to the GEN 3's wood roof rack.



All assembled there's not much more structural integrity than an erector set, getting less than what I paid for perhaps. Its intended use, like on the H3, is to have a place for recovery gear and a three-gallon Rotopax can. It's 39.5x36 inches, allowing a little under ten square feet of space. The Garvin Sport Rack on the H3 allowed 14.4 square - feet thirty percent less room - plus this little basket won't hold an awning. But I have other plans for that.



To make the best use of this real estate, and to reinforce the rack a bit more, I added 2" aluminum flat bar, a 20" piece to provide mounting area for the shovel, and two 10" pieces to do the same for the Rotopax.



I did a test fit with the a TRED in place - it will be mounted with a cable lock like on the Garvin rack.



And then drilled holes and mounted the slats with 3/16" aluminum rivets.



My cuts leave much to be desired, but considering what I'm working with - a B&D jig saw with a metal cutting blade - I'll live with it. I won't be standing on top of the Monty eyeballing my shoddy craftsmanship.



With the slats attached I shot the whole rack with Duplicolor's bed liner.



Once the paint set I added the hardware,



...and mounted the rack on the Montero. I'm giving it 24 hours before I mount the gear. It kind of has a factory feel to it with the cut-outs on the basket mimicking those on the stanchions of the factory rack, if you squint your eyes a bit.
















1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Folding Utility Shelf No. 3
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2017, 08:12:19 AM »
03/16/2017



One interior mod we've used the most is the folding utility table mounted on the rear door. This being the third, I thought it'd be pretty straightforward, borrowing from the Gen3's use of an off-the-shelf 1"X12"X24" plank (this one being pine) and the hardware approach from the H3. As we both know, nothing is pretty straightforward when you think it's going to be.



The stock plank was sanded and shot with Minwax PolyShade in the oak finish. Six or seven coats, I lost count.



I added the same type of stainless marine hinges used in the H3 (had another pair knocking around for some reason), and started using stainless hardware to mount to the door through the trim plastic and to sheet metal beneath. I drilled pilot holes and set the hardware, snapping the head off one of them. At the risk of Swiss-cheesing the rear door facia, I decided to live with it.

Locating the shelf on this door was a compromise at best. I didn't want to obstruct the tool kit locker that I'm planning on repurposing as a kitchen utensil locker, I wanted to have a short reach to the sheet metal for the hinges, ending up with this spot, about three inches too low for me.



I repurposed two of the security blind holders from the cargo area to have them do double duty on the shelf; one to secure the paracord that suspends the table and the other to secure to the elastic retainers that keep the table closed.



The supports need the ability to be disconnected to access the tool kit, at least on the one side, so I used a pair of Nite-Ize s-clips that hook on to small d-rings, picture hanging hardware. The knot is of my own invention. There's a do-over in the works.



Stowed, the table's backside is home to the MOLLE panel from the H3 which holds the First Aid and trauma gear as well as the WebDominators that attach the panel to the security blind holders, keeping it all snug and rattle-free.
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Hi-Lift Mount
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2017, 08:14:53 AM »
03/17/2017



Necessity being the mother that it is, the Hi-Lift Jack had to go somewhere else other than on the Franklin rack. I think it soiled itself when I lifted it up for a test fit. The next more likely spot was on the brush guard.



I drilled a hole through the cross members of two u-bolts, 5/16ths, stainless, through which I inserted the bolt and mounted the assembly to the crossbar of the brush guard. I then slipped a QuickFist clamp on each bolt, fitted the Hi-Lift jack and cinched it down with stainless wing nuts. I added a strap to keep the jack handle from vibrating.

1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Sleeping Platform and Drawer System - Part One
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2017, 08:24:31 AM »
04/13/2017





If you've been reading along on this build you know that there was a dog deck and a folding utility shelf installed, neither of which worked as well as I would have liked. Add to that one of the reasons I went with this 2.5 is its room to create a sleeping platform, and I decided to do a do-over, making this Interior Modification, Part 2, combining a platform with a drawer system.



I studied a number of DYI systems on Expo and other build threads, making decisions on materials and dimensions, but keeping all this driven by our overland history of what has worked and what we wish we had. The driving need here for us was to have the ability to pull over, level out, roll out pads and bags and go to sleep.

We've done the RTT route and have a Kodiak ground tent, both with pros and cons. Being able to sleep in the Monty seems to be the best compromise for us; easy set-up and access, great weather protection and climate control, off the ground away from critters and more of a challenge for predators to get to us.

We didn't want to compromise storage, and given we've turned this Monty into more of a Nomad (its new nomenclature) by removing everything aft of the front seats, a platform with a drawer system and storage hatches would be the way to go. The system would provide a cooking and cleaning workspace and a large drawer.

And then there's the fridge dilemma. Every fridge system, save for a couple small ones, exceed the platform height requirements I established for this build; 12" high from the cargo floor, giving us and the canines enough room above board to sleep and travel comfortably. That equates to 18" in the middle seat passenger-side footwell, but the well itself is just a bit too small to accommodate an Engel or ARB fridge, so I originally considered a smaller 12V fridge. 

With these considerations in mind, I hit the drawing board.



This shoot-for-the-moon design featured a stainless drop-in propane two-burner stove and a drop-in stainless sink in a slide-out drawer. A 23"W by 30"D drawer would store mess and camp stuff. There's room for a ten gallon water tank and a Luna Dual Battery system to power the fridge and isolate the 2.5's main 12V system.

I calculated around 170 pounds was removed from the interior and I didn't want to exceed that in this build. I compared MDF, plywood and particle board in terms of weight and strength and decided to go with particle board. (Welding a frame together was out of my scope.) UPDATE: Finished build comes in at approximately 185 pounds.





The first alteration to the original plan was to flip it, putting the kitchen slide-out on the door side using it as a wind break to shelter the cooking area.



I went four inches shorter in length on the outer uprights to allow easier access for storage under the platform.



The platform was originally designed with three hatches; two wings on the sides flanking the drawer cabinet, and one long hatch to access the space in the cabinet ahead of the drawers to store gear. I took care to make certain the interior dimensions of the cabinet were square from to back, top to bottom.



A fourth hatch was added just aft of the front passenger seat to provide access to the fridge. With everything cut, it was covered with Select Elements Foster Gunmetal Indoor/Outdoor carpet and Gorilla Glue.

1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Sleeping Platform and Drawer System - Part Two
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2017, 08:30:57 AM »
With the cabinet and platform built, installed and covered, I took dimensions for the drawers, keeping in mind that the drawer sliders would occupy an inch of the width dimension of each drawer.



The original plan was to contract out the drawer construction, but for the time and cost involved I decided to build them myself. I went with one-by-two inch milled pine for the stove/sink frame instead of what I specified in the plans and 5.5" milled pine on the storage drawer.



The next big plan alteration was the hardware for the kitchen slide-out. I decided to go the budget route and use what I had on hand. I found a great little collapsible sink made by Ultimate Survival Technologies and have on hand a Camp Chef single burner butane stove and made changes to the layout.



I rotated the stove 90 degrees to make it easer to load the butane, access the controls and give it more space away from the edge of the platform.



Snap hardware was used to mount the stove to the pull-out surface, keeping it firmly in place but capable of being removed for cleaning. The collapsible sink creates space to store a dromedary bag underneath. The drawer glide for this pull-out is a 30" Firgelli Automations Full Extension Drawer Slide rated up to 400 pounds.



With all these design considerations and alterations, this is what we ended up with:



The drawer pulls are lockable Amarine 2" Flush Pull Slam latches.







Accuride 28" Full Extension Drawer Glides support the gear drawer rated it 100 pounds.



The Monty has a 12V power plug on the LH side of the cargo area, so I pulled power from it to feed this 12V panel.
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Sleeping Platform and Drawer System - Part Three
« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2017, 08:36:33 AM »




In our travels we never once said, "Wouldn't it be nice to have a fridge?" Our Coleman 54qt. cooler never let us down. But, it, too, was too big to fit in the space behind the front passenger seat.



Engel makes a 30qt. cooler that fits perfectly in this spot as seen from behind the passenger seat. The center support stanchion is made from 1" PVC.



To access the cooler, I created the fourth hatch that lands on a collapsible bracket on the right.



When open, the underside of the hatch has a white plastic cutting board food prep surface.





The support brackets (on both B-pillars) are an 8" folding spring-loaded support made for microwave ovens.





The hatch has a second support, a sliding latch that locks into the platform at the head end.


1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

ImNoSaint

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Sleeping Platform and Drawer System - Part Four
« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2017, 08:39:26 AM »


The driver's side passenger door storage area accommodates two camp chairs, our Volcano grill, portable lu, folding table and other gear.



The leading edge of the platform is protected with a strip of aluminum stair edging.



And the other three sides of the platform are finished with white vinyl wire channel.

1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold

PajEvo

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Re: ImNoSaint's GEN 2.5 Build
« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2017, 06:02:11 PM »
Really enjoyed your first Monty on Expo, so when you got the H3 (and I liked them too, I have to admit) I was disappointed that we were 'losing you' to a different marque. SO HAPPY you're back! Great detail as usual, and unusual solutions to usual problems. We are lucky to have you here.  :)

ImNoSaint

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Re: ImNoSaint's GEN 2.5 Build
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2017, 07:53:36 PM »
Really enjoyed your first Monty on Expo, so when you got the H3 (and I liked them too, I have to admit) I was disappointed that we were 'losing you' to a different marque. SO HAPPY you're back! Great detail as usual, and unusual solutions to usual problems. We are lucky to have you here.  :)

Wow, thank you. That's humbling. I'm happy to be back, especially behind the wheel of a Monty. And I'm the lucky one here - thanks for letting me post.
1998 Mitsubishi Montero Winter Package
2008 Kawasaki KLR 650 - sold
2007 Hummer H3 - sold
2003 Mitsubishi Montero LTD - sold