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Unread 01-19-2012, 11:49 AM   #1
mrmonkey
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1993 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: South Jordan, Utah
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Another 2.5 Swap

My 2.5L on my 93 is in need of replacing or rebuilding.

I am struggling with what to do with it and need some advice. I bought the 2.5L because the 4.0's are very hard to find around here. I was happy with the 2.5 and never felt a lack of power, yet. Unfortunately I've only been able to wheel it once.

Now that I'm forced to do something on the engine I would love to replace it with something better and a stronger. Checking my local classifieds I have a couple options. My goal here is to get something I'm not going to have problems with or spend too much on. Obviously the weakest link is the drivetrain on the 2.5L model.

1) Ford 5.0L V8 100k miles -- $400. Very cheap and easy to find parts. Tons of power. But would require replacing the AX5 and possible NP231 and the D30/35 would have to go. Obviously I would have awesome power, but would be more upfront so I don't bust everything under the car.

2) CJ5 V6 engine, tranny, wiring for $750 only has 15k miles on it. Should be an easier install. Less rewiring. But it's carbed, right? I hate carbs. At least I hated my carb on my 89 YJ with the 4.2L, but that was a piece of junk anyways.

3) Buy a Chevy Blazer with the Vortec V6 -- $1500 for the whole car. Pull the engine and tranny and make it work. Only problem is it's auto, so i'd loose my manual tranny. Great engine, could probably make the D30/35's work for now, but would look to replace those down the road.

OR

4) 2.5L out of a 97, 125K miles -- $650.

Any advice?

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Unread 01-19-2012, 12:03 PM   #2
Andywear
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2.5 would be the easest.
Whats exactly wrong with your 2.5?
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Unread 01-19-2012, 12:07 PM   #3
ColoradoYJ95
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2.5 would definitely be easiest, but if you're already going to be replacing it, I would go with something stronger. The V8 would be too much IMO, but the chevy V6 or CJ V6 would be probably right where you want to be. I personally would lean towards the Chevy engine/tranny combo for the sake of fuel injection and being super easy to find parts for. plus you can then scrap the rest of the blazer and get some money back!
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Unread 01-19-2012, 12:25 PM   #4
mrmonkey
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The wife was driving on the freeway and it overheated. Then she couldn't get a hold of me at work and was stranded so she kept trying to drive it somewhere safer (off the freeway).

Cylinder 1 has 0 compression and the leak test proved it needed a rebuild or replacement.

I'm sure the wife would love an automatic (she's the one that drives it mostly) but I would sure miss the stick if we went with the auto Chevy V6.
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Unread 01-19-2012, 12:32 PM   #5
GrantYJ
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It sounds like you want an easy install that is inexpensive, powerful, and reliable... Stand in line. At best you can meet three of the criteria.

You've obviously had a problem with your 2.5, but there isn't much argument that the 2.5 is a dead reliable little engine. It's also by far your easiest route from an installation standpoint, and it won't be very expensive to swap, but you'll still have an ax5 behind it, and a d35 in the rear.

I wouldn't even consider the CJ5 engine. No real bang for the buck and very expensive to buy parts for. If you want to go the blazer route, that's fine, but it's going to cost you several times what you think it will. Also, it's not easy to put in an engine that was never intended for a vehicle.

Basically, if cost is a concern, your best bet is another 2.5. If you're dead set on swapping for more power, personally, I'd go with a 5.0.
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Unread 01-19-2012, 08:06 PM   #6
SnowdogMarc
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Just did the Vortec swap on mine. Had a few issues along the way but every major swap will. You will have to upgrade to at least an Ax-15 and ditch the 35 as well. I did a 4.3 with the 15 and had already put an 8.8 last year. The guy I got the 15 from had a 231 with a SYE already installed and an XJ front shaft that I had shortened up to use for the rear. The wiring harness is not that hard to make work with the factory harness either. The 100 HP increase you end up with is well worth the effort it takes to do it.
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Unread 01-19-2012, 08:34 PM   #7
matrix311
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Whats different about the 97 2.5l from what you have now?
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Unread 01-19-2012, 11:48 PM   #8
ColoradoYJ95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowdogMarc View Post
Just did the Vortec swap on mine. Had a few issues along the way but every major swap will. You will have to upgrade to at least an Ax-15 and ditch the 35 as well. I did a 4.3 with the 15 and had already put an 8.8 last year. The guy I got the 15 from had a 231 with a SYE already installed and an XJ front shaft that I had shortened up to use for the rear. The wiring harness is not that hard to make work with the factory harness either. The 100 HP increase you end up with is well worth the effort it takes to do it.
Something I'm curious about... since he's getting the entire blazer, and assuming it has the 700r4, would that transmission mount to the NP231? or would the OP have to get a new TC as well? (or, use the one from the blazer...??) Just curious!!
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Unread 01-20-2012, 07:40 PM   #9
Caterlac
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Why not rebuild the engine you have. You could freshen it up for around $400.00. I'm doing that with mine. I'll have close to $900.00 when I'm finished, but I needed a new crank and had to bore the cylinders out to .060" to clean them up. Still, not bad and I'll know what I have when I'm finished.
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Unread 01-20-2012, 08:49 PM   #10
doogie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrmonkey View Post
I was happy with the 2.5 and never felt a lack of power, yet. Unfortunately I've only been able to wheel it once.

Obviously the weakest link is the drivetrain on the 2.5L model.
This is an easy decision.

You were happy with the 2.5. Running stock tires or the right gears it's not an underpowered motor. Wheeling it you will only like it better, in 4lo it feels even more powerful. It's also not the weakest link in your drivetrain, it's likely the strongest. The weakest link in your drivetrain will be your D35 or your AX-5 tranny. Another thing to consider is your resale ability and value. I've been in custom vehicles my entire life from VW's to Jeeps to Yotas to Hondas and I wouldn't touch an engine swapped vehicle to save my life and there are plenty like me. Put another 2.5 back in it or rebuild the one you have. Less headaches, better resale options/value, very dependable, you can't go wrong.
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Unread 01-20-2012, 09:27 PM   #11
SnowdogMarc
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColoradoYJ95 View Post
Something I'm curious about... since he's getting the entire blazer, and assuming it has the 700r4, would that transmission mount to the NP231? or would the OP have to get a new TC as well? (or, use the one from the blazer...??) Just curious!!
I'd just use the whole setup from the blazer as you will have the computer and wiring and everything else you will need to make it work without having to modify anything.
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