I ended up cutting a piece of 1/8" flat and welded in to help box it some and add some strength. I have 33" tires on the jeep and minimal off road, so shouldn't have the torque that 35" tires would produce.
Also have to warn you that the bolts they send with the kit (4 for mounting gear to bracket are not long enough with the spacers they send to align the gear in the bracket. The 3 bolts that mount the top of the mount to the cross member could be longer also. They use a flat washer and lock washer which leaves only just over 1/8" going into the threaded moles of the mount. The metal welded in isn't the prettiest but should work.
Pulled the engine/trans/transfer case out and installed as one. Used a ratchet strap to support the rear in the cj8 frame. Went to mock up the tdk skid plate (I purchased together with cj7's tdk frame) to the scrambler frame and the holes don't come anywhere near where they should be. Out of the 3 mounts on each frame rail, the rear 2 will work (allowing the skid plate to protect the transfer case and allow the trans pan to be dropped with a little finesse). On this jeep since this frame has some spots cut out and welded/patched I may drill a hole in the bottom of the frame for the bolts. I'll cut a hole in the side, large enough to slide a 1" x 4" piece of flat steel (with a nut spot welded on). I'll weld a patch on the entrance hole I cut on the side of the frame. If I'm lucky the frame will have a horizontal hole (or one I can enlarge) just down the frame that I can work the flat steel through the frame into place. With the engine out, I changed the m.o.r.e engine mount bushings out and replaced with new ones. Last year after having the transfer case pulled and rebuilt the trans started pushing fluid out the vent and fill tube. Mechanic and trans shop couldn't figure it out so had them rebuild the trans (original trans in the 79 cj7). Worked well for a few runs, parked and 2 mths. later when moving into heated section jeep has a shutter and did the same`leaks with the trans. Long story short, found out people were having problems with the trans shop work. Went to my landlords guy and he couldn't find anything. Had him rebuild again and change trans body from amc version of th400 to chevy version. Works great, still have the shutter. Engine runs good, only thing I can think of is all the removal and installs of the trans and transfer case may have elongated the poly bushing. The skid plate is mounted with 2 bolts per side, ready to make a new trans mount bracket.
I also removed the tire carrier and mounted on the cj8.
All the above that I posted today was done last week. On Friday I went back it with the goal of building the mount and welding it to the skid plate, doing the 2 new frame mount holes for the skid plate and removing and placing the exhaust from the cj7 to the cj8. I got the mount made and drilled, ready to do the last fitting and welding and everything went wrong. Sound funny unless it happens to you. I have a mount/adapter that I use on the floor jack. The arms can extend to catch each side of the axle tubes. While walking by it the shoe lace loop (right foot) caught one of the ends of the jack. As I fell forward my left foot was behind my body and while going forward left foot toe caught behind the right foot. I ended going down driving my left knee into the concrete floor. I knew it was bad when I because I hit the concrete it was a solid hit. Started swelling immediately. Was able to get the mount in place and transfer case lowered on it (about 15 minutes) and the knee was the size of a football. That point I got out of the shop and home. Three hrs later after x-rays found out I have a crack in the knee cap that actually is a split in the knee cap. Orthopedic surgeon's were already gone so was put in a immobilizer and late monday talked to the surgeon. 2 cracks that formed a Y, lucky that the split didn't go higher up (could have sheared the knee cap in half). Unfortunately I'm looking at 6 to 8 weeks before I can get back to the jeep.
I was in such a hurry it get home before the knee got too bad that I didn't take a pic of the mount in place. Was able to get out today to pay the shop rent and get the tow motor to my mechanic before today's shot of snow. While I was there I got a pic of the mount in it's position, ready to get welded. Also got the plates to move the rear axle forward (to make sure it clears the fuel tank).
Wow, that brings back memories (the fall/kneecap). I was carrying parts out to the Postal in a box that needed both hands and tripped over another box on the floor. Had no way to break my fall, went down very hard with all my weight right on my right kneecap. I was sure I'd broken it, hurt like all holy hell and I could feel a dent. X-rays were shockingly negative but I still have the dent to this day.
Heal well, sorry to hear about it. You were making amazing progress!
I used those same plates on my rear end for the same reason.
Thanks, l'm glad yours didn't break (I bet it hurt like hell for quite a while). I was looking forward to having the switch done (including a new neat dash) by March. Really miss driving the jeep. Not much time to work on the jeep and drive her when the weather breaks.