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Unread 06-29-2015, 10:54 PM   #1
Globalksp
Registered User
2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 68
Fe2O3

"Rust has been called “the great destroyer” and “the evil.” The Pentagon refers to it as “the pervasive menace.” It destroys cars, fells bridges, sinks ships, sparks house fires, and nearly brought down the Statue of Liberty. Rust costs America more than $400 billion per year—more than all other natural disasters combined". -Corrosion Doctors

And I just bought a '01 Limited full of it. That story here (it's a fun read).

Since warily taking ownership of it, I've come to love the new XJ (who is still awaiting a name. Thoughts?) and am finally getting a Need-To-Do list together. On the top of that list is the rust issue.

More photos coming soon.

Luckily the XJ came with a full set of service records and it was serviced the very regularly. Other than those records and what can be deduced from them (front axle UJoints replaced twice, two new starters in 3 years, front fuel line replaced, etc...) I'm on my own to hunt down and take care of things before they break.

I'll be taking the XJ to my (hometown, non-Jeep-centric) mechanic to have him give it the once over. I was also thinking of taking it to a hot rod/restoration shop to have them inspect. My assumption would be that they see a lot of rust on project cars being built by meticulous hot-rod folk.

Critical points to inspect for rust/rot
Chassis, frame rails, floor pans, motor & trans mounts, brake lines, fuel lines, gas tank... what else?

Removing the surface rust and coating with an inhibitor
(I hear Eastwood Co tested out better than POR 15 for example), but any info / thoughts you have are appreciated. A bodyshop here in Brooklyn suggested taking it to a big rig shop that has a sandblaster and having them sandblast the rust off... Um... Gotta love NY?

Working with the rust
Aside from PB Blaster, any recommendations?
I went to change out a headlight this morning and couldn't get the screws out I expect this to be a common thing. I thinking of replacing every nut and bolt I come across with non-rusted parts.


As always, thanks for the thoughts. Happy to be back.
-K

jeep_cherry_06.jpg   jeep_cherry_14.jpg   jeep_cherry_17.jpg   jeep_cherry_18.jpg  
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Unread 06-29-2015, 11:19 PM   #2
XJNewt
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Maple Ridge, BC
Posts: 68
Well the name seems obvious. I have known several redheads that went by the nick "Rusty" and since your ride does have the touch of the oxidiser fairy it seems appropriate.

Two words you need to know if rust is in your ride, Chassis Saver.

This stuff will be a good friend. See the forum thread for Monstaliner in the vendors section to find out about this stuff. The company that makes Monstaliner makes Chassis Saver. It smothers rust and stops it from coming back. Many recommend it over POR 15. Only way it could be better IMO is if it healed rust holes. Too bad only a welder can do a nice job on that, a pop riveter and plenty of body sealer is the less elegant route.

Some Chassis Saver and a overcoat of red rattle can would fix those doors up, and doing the entire underside would take about the rest of a quart can.

For stuck bolts and such PB Blaster is the best IMO. You will have better luck if you spray a day ahead for bad rust. For really badly seized stuff spray it several times over a few days, be liberal.

You won't have any rust issues with the gas tank because in your Cherokee it's plastic. I recommend you get a gas tank skid if your taking your Cherokee where big sharp rocks lurk, these plastic tanks are easy to perforate, very expensive to replace new, impossible to repair and most scrap yards (around here anyway) puncture them to drain out any fuel and prevent ground spills or fires making used ones hard to acquire.

Body rust can hide under the rear wrap around bumper caps. If its all bad below the bottom of the angled body line where the top edge of the bumper cap is a cut & fold will be a cheap way to rid yourself of it. You can cut the entire bottom rear of the quarter off along with any rust that's there when you do a cut & fold. It can be done with patience and without a welder. It is easier and neater if its welded up of course, but you need to be good with a MIG or pay someone who is good with a MIG to weld on a Cherokee's bodywork with any real hope of success.

XJs don't really have frames per say, they're unibody. One way to fix up and strengthen the uniframe is to look into frame stiffeners. They're produced by several aftermarket manufacturers. The are welded over the existing uniframe and add considerable strength and stiffness as their name implies. Obviously you're going to want to cut out and replace bad rust in the uniframe, then afterward you could consider the stiffeners to back up the repairs and make it a very strong Cherokee indeed. If there isn't really bad rust (almost perforated or perforated) then I'd even consider just Chassis Saver to stop the rust then frame stiffeners to give back the strength.

Check the cooling system for chocolate milk where there should be coolant. Be aware of 0331 cylinder heads that came on the '00 & 01s. They are prone to cracking, especially if the engine gets hot. These heads have the number "0331" stamped on driver's side at top-middle at valve cover edge. The fix is to replace the bad 0331 head with the improved TUPY head. If your Cherokee has already had its head replaced with a "TUPY" the letters TUPY are visible in the casting when viewed through oil filler cap, looking straight down at head from above. I have a 2000 and I cracked my 0331 when it overheated. It cracked between the 3rd and 4th cylinder and it made a milky line that was easy to see where the crack was with the valve cover off. I caught it before any bottom end damage was done and replaced it with the improved "TUPY" head. While I was doing that I replaced the entire cooling system including the heater core. That was last year, the Jeep was 15 years old so it wasn't surprising that the rad and heater core were pretty blocked up and all the hoses were still stock so they were pretty much mush all coated in rust inside. Everything was great until last week when my original equipment electric fan gave up. I replaced the waterpump and the clutch fan when the cooling overhaul was done., but neglected to replace the 15 year old electric fan because it still worked. I was being foolish as it was only a few thousand km until the electric fan gave it up. Glad it didn't happen miles into the bush, all loaded down. While I wait for the part to arrive I have to stick to very short intown trips, even with a totally new cooling system stop and go traffic makes the temperature gauge climb. Before I replaced the cooling system my Cherokee ran one mark above 100 degrees C now it runs one mark below. 100 C is 212 F.

In the end it all depends how long you intend to keep the red Jeep, and what you'll expect of it that determine how far you want to go. I plan on running my silver '00 gently into the ground and intend on maintaining it as long as possible on the way to its inevitable demise. Fortunately for me rust is not a concern and PB Blaster has always loosened the rusty bolts I ran into getting the stock bumper off and removing those very headlight bolts of which you spoke and the damn license plate bolts (replace them both with stainless and never have them stuck again). I use Chassis Saver on the underside and on the T-case and gas tank skids to keep it all clear of rust.
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Unread 06-29-2015, 11:22 PM   #3
Globalksp
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2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by XJNewt View Post
Well the name seems obvious. I have known several red heads that went by the nick "Rusty" and since your ride does have the touch of the oxidiser fairy it seems appropriate.
Indeed it does... it was the first name that came to mind for me as well.

Thanks for the info, checking it out now...

-K
__________________
'01 Limited | "Rusty" | 77K and counting...
Highway warrior attempting to maximize efficiency.
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Unread 06-30-2015, 11:01 AM   #4
Globalksp
Registered User
2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by XJNewt View Post
Some Chassis Saver and a overcoat of red rattle can would fix those doors up, and doing the entire underside would take about the rest of a quart can.

For stuck bolts and such PB Blaster is the best IMO. You will have better luck if you spray a day ahead for bad rust. For really badly seized stuff spray it several times over a few days, be liberal.

You won't have any rust issues with the gas tank because in your Cherokee it's plastic. I recommend you get a gas tank skid if your taking your Cherokee where big sharp rocks lurk, these plastic tanks are easy to perforate, very expensive to replace new, impossible to repair and most scrap yards (around here anyway) puncture them to drain out any fuel and prevent ground spills or fires making used ones hard to acquire.

Body rust can hide under the rear wrap around bumper caps. If its all bad below the bottom of the angled body line where the top edge of the bumper cap is a cut & fold will be a cheap way to rid yourself of it. You can cut the entire bottom rear of the quarter off along with any rust that's there when you do a cut & fold. It can be done with patience and without a welder. It is easier and neater if its welded up of course, but you need to be good with a MIG or pay someone who is good with a MIG to weld on a Cherokee's bodywork with any real hope of success.

XJs don't really have frames per say, they're unibody. One way to fix up and strengthen the uniframe is to look into frame stiffeners. They're produced by several aftermarket manufacturers. The are welded over the existing uniframe and add considerable strength and stiffness as their name implies. Obviously you're going to want to cut out and replace bad rust in the uniframe, then afterward you could consider the stiffeners to back up the repairs and make it a very strong Cherokee indeed. If there isn't really bad rust (almost perforated or perforated) then I'd even consider just Chassis Saver to stop the rust then frame stiffeners to give back the strength.

Check the cooling system for chocolate milk where there should be coolant. Be aware of 0331 cylinder heads that came on the '00 & 01s. They are prone to cracking, especially if the engine gets hot. These heads have the number "0331" stamped on driver's side at top-middle at valve cover edge. The fix is to replace the bad 0331 head with the improved TUPY head. If your Cherokee has already had its head replaced with a "TUPY" the letters TUPY are visible in the casting when viewed through oil filler cap, looking straight down at head from above. I have a 2000 and I cracked my 0331 when it overheated. It cracked between the 3rd and 4th cylinder and it made a milky line that was easy to see where the crack was with the valve cover off. I caught it before any bottom end damage was done and replaced it with the improved "TUPY" head. While I was doing that I replaced the entire cooling system including the heater core. That was last year, the Jeep was 15 years old so it wasn't surprising that the rad and heater core were pretty blocked up and all the hoses were still stock so they were pretty much mush all coated in rust inside. Everything was great until last week when my original equipment electric fan gave up. I replaced the waterpump and the clutch fan when the cooling overhaul was done., but neglected to replace the 15 year old electric fan because it still worked. I was being foolish as it was only a few thousand km until the electric fan gave it up. Glad it didn't happen miles into the bush, all loaded down. While I wait for the part to arrive I have to stick to very short intown trips, even with a totally new cooling system stop and go traffic makes the temperature gauge climb. Before I replaced the cooling system my Cherokee ran one mark above 100 degrees C now it runs one mark below. 100 C is 212 F.

In the end it all depends how long you intend to keep the red Jeep, and what you'll expect of it that determine how far you want to go. I plan on running my silver '00 gently into the ground and intend on maintaining it as long as possible on the way to its inevitable demise. Fortunately for me rust is not a concern and PB Blaster has always loosened the rusty bolts I ran into getting the stock bumper off and removing those very headlight bolts of which you spoke and the damn license plate bolts (replace them both with stainless and never have them stuck again). I use Chassis Saver on the underside and on the T-case and gas tank skids to keep it all clear of rust.
Tons of great info in the add on post... many thanks!

I'm aware of the 0331 head issue and it too is also high on the list. The original owner of Rusty took very good care of her... mechanically. Why they let her rust is beyond me. It's not like he didn't have the resources (he was a Chrysler/Jeep dealer mechanic)!

The Jeep keeps its cool well and knowing about the 0331 issue, its one aspect I will be keeping close tabs on. So far the coolant is nothing by green.

Like you, I plan to keep the Jeep as long as possible. With only 77K on the clock, that should be a long time indeed. Along the way, I'd like to make her as reliable and efficient as possible seeing how she's a road warrior and (as of now) sees very little off-road use. That being said, the streets of NYC are rightly terrible and I at times wonder who puts their XJ through more abuse, we city drivers or the trail blazers?

I'm still piecing together my to-do list and then will prioritize and of course ask for opinions when that happens.

Thanks again,
K
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'01 Limited | "Rusty" | 77K and counting...
Highway warrior attempting to maximize efficiency.
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Unread 06-30-2015, 12:38 PM   #5
XJNewt
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Maple Ridge, BC
Posts: 68
I see today that you're from NY state. If keeping your $ in the N.American economy is important to you I recommend you check out JCR Offroad. All of their products are very well constructed and they make a lot of products for your ride. I preferred their designs over ARB and Smittybuilt, and several other makers I checked out but that's just my personal opinion. The welds are tidy and very well executed. They have quite a few products for your ride, and ALL of it is proudly made in Michigan, USA. They always include top notch hardware and now even offer powder coating as well as bare metal.

Best of all for most US customers, as taken from their website "JcrOffroad offers free UPS Ground shipping to the Contiguous United States (Lower 48) on all items when the subtotal of your order is $100.00 or above". That's a sweet deal, bumpers and armour are heavy and generally costly to ship. Everything was well packed when I received my shipment.

I have a front winch bumper c/w uniframe tie ins, rear bumper with integrated receiver mount (rated for the max towing capacity of a Cherokee), rock sliders, T-case skid and gas tank skid all from JCR. I ordered everything in bare metal and I'm now in the process of finishing everything in epoxy primer followed by Chassis Saver on the back sides and black Monstaliner on the surfaces that can be seen. Monsta is really tough, so its ideal for bumpers and armour. I chose black since it goes well with silver. Monstaliner isn't available in any metallic shades, but they do have 4 shades of red.

Glad to hear you're intending to go long with your ride. You didn't mention how many miles were on the clock, but these 4.0 liter engines go 250k miles often before rebuild and more. I just spoke to a fellow XJ owner last week who had 400,000+ kilometers on it, that's 248,000 miles. His ride is still going strong and still doesn't use oil.

Sure its a box, and its 16 years old. It doesn't get good gas mileage compared to modern vehicles. It rides like a buckboard and has rattles and squeaks, but I wouldn't trade it for any vehicle currently made. It gets me pretty much anywhere I want to go, in any weather. This is my second Cherokee, and soon I'll be looking for another '00 to cannibalize for spares.
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Unread 07-03-2015, 08:34 AM   #6
Globalksp
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2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
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Posts: 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by XJNewt View Post
Be aware of 0331 cylinder heads that came on the '00 & 01s. They are prone to cracking, especially if the engine gets hot. These heads have the number "0331" stamped on driver's side at top-middle at valve cover edge. The fix is to replace the bad 0331 head with the improved TUPY head. If your Cherokee has already had its head replaced with a "TUPY" the letters TUPY are visible in the casting when viewed through oil filler cap, looking straight down at head from above.
I do believe finding this made my week! There is no record of the previous owner changing out the head. Did the TUPY heads ever come factory installed? Whatever the case may be, a small sense of relief has settled in.
img_3207.jpg  
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Unread 07-03-2015, 10:04 AM   #7
Globalksp
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For anyone still following or finding this thread... I snapped some shots of the engine bay to document the rust that's happening there.

In time, I'd love for all of the rusted parts to be replaced, but for now, does anything jump out at anyone that should be attended to ASAP?

Thanks,
K
img_3198.jpg   img_3199.jpg   img_3200.jpg   img_3201.jpg   img_3202.jpg  

img_3203.jpg   img_3207.jpg   img_3208.jpg   img_3209.jpg   img_3210.jpg  

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'01 Limited | "Rusty" | 77K and counting...
Highway warrior attempting to maximize efficiency.
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Unread 07-03-2015, 10:06 AM   #8
Globalksp
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2001 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 68
...
img_3211.jpg   img_3214.jpg   img_3216.jpg   img_3217.jpg  
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'01 Limited | "Rusty" | 77K and counting...
Highway warrior attempting to maximize efficiency.
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Unread 07-03-2015, 10:06 PM   #9
XJNewt
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2000 XJ Cherokee 
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Maple Ridge, BC
Posts: 68
To my knowledge 2000s never came with TUPYs. Unsure about 2001s but I think the TUPY head is newer than 2001 too, although it sure doesn't look like that valve cover or head have ever been off judging by the rust on the bolts.

For owners of '00 & '01 XJs that is indeed a heavenly sight you have there. Rejoice, that is the improved "TUPY" cylinder head! Excellent pic too. One of the best I've seen.

Couldn't tell you if the rust in the engine bay is in immediate need of repair Some looks fairly substantial, like on the brake lines. Id want my brake lines to be strong and to have no chance of catastrophic blowouts. That said I really have no idea how rusty is still OK for a solid metal brake line.
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Unread 07-03-2015, 11:00 PM   #10
Globalksp
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Brooklyn, NY
Posts: 68
Just thought I'd put the photos out there in case someone has had something of the same. The break lines scare me as does the rusting around the motor mounts. I guess the money I don't have to spend on the head swap can now be put toward other things.

The previous/1st owner (guy I bought it from owned it for one winter so I kind of disregard his ownership in the grand scheme) was a mechanic at a Chrysler/Jeep dealer. I assume he was familiar with the problem and swapped the head out early on.

As for the photo, believe it or not, iPhone with flash and a small bit of Lightroom (photoshop-ish) work. Took three shots for the phone to focus on the TUPY.

-K
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'01 Limited | "Rusty" | 77K and counting...
Highway warrior attempting to maximize efficiency.
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