Bob's Build Thread
I've had the Jeep for a year now, so here's my build thread.
Here is how she sits now:
And this is how she looked when I got her:
I've outlined my adventure so far below and will try to update this thread as I make progress.
Eventually, I'd like to have a V8 in there to replace my poor little 4 cylinder, but that's some time away.
I bought the 1995 YJ for $3700 with 99,000 miles in July 2009. It's a 2.5L with manual transmission that was pretty much bone stock. The radio didn't work and the carpet was torn to shreds.
When I bought it, the brakes were squeaky, so I took it to the mechanic. I got my rotors & drums resurfaced and pads replaced. I also got my wheel cylinders replaced. The damage? Over $500! The next time I needed any brake service, you can bet that I didn't take it to the mechanic. :nono:
I needed music, so I bought a radio (Dual XHD7714) and replaced the speakers with some Pioneer 4x6s. I called to get some prices on what the installation would cost, but decided to do it myself when I heard prices of $80 for JUST THE SPEAKERS. I love the radio. It has an IPod hookup, Bluetooth capability, and HD radio stations.
<Picture of Radio goes here>
I installed a VDP soundbar while I was at it for a little extra sound. The sound is pretty good, but the dome light it came with is pretty useless.
<Picture of soundbar goes here>
Since I work in the Bronx, I also needed to install a hood lock. I didn't want Hoodlum Joe to come up to my Jeep and take my battery and leave me stranded, so I bought a Rugged Ridge hood lock for $25.
<Picture of hood lock goes here>
I also needed some new headlights. My headlights weren't burned out, but they were very dim. I decided to go with a pair of Sylvania Silverstars. Those suckers are bright! I was surprised to see that the entire light housing gets replaced and not just the bulb. Cool.
Since I did not know the last time the Jeep was serviced, I soon took it to have the oil replaced--$30. This was the last time anybody besides me would change my oil.
If I wanted to go doorless, I would have to abide by NJ law. My girlfriend bought me some mirror relocation brackets that allow the mirrors to be relocated to the windshield hinges. The view on the passenger side mirror is pretty crappy, but I don't use that mirror much anyway.
<Picture of windshield relocation brackets>
I also tore out the stock carpet and replaced it with a new set from Rugged Ridge. Eventually I want to use a spray-on bedliner, but it would be a fine temporary fix.
<Picture of carpet>
I had a problem with the alarm system that the YJ was apparently equipped with. I did not have a remote for it, but there was an alarm installed by the PO. Unfortunately, it had some sort of cutoff switch that I triggered when I yanked a fuse. This meant that I had to trick the Jeep every time I needed to start it, so I got the alarm removed and replaced it with a Viper HV350 system. Remember, I work in the Bronx. Every little bit will help there.
I read about the YJ gas tank in 1995 hiding 5 extra gallons, so in mid-September, I cut my vent hose down to about 2 inches in preparation for a road trip up to Canada. The extra 5 gallons helped reduce the number of stops I had to make. That was well worth it.
At the end of September, I gave the YJ its first tune up under my ownership and replaced the spark plugs and wires, distributor cap, air filter, and oil & oil filter. It cost about $80 and took about an hour, but I noticed a nice little improvement. I don't know when the previous tune up was, so little by little I ensured everything was not overdue.
In October, the real fun began. I bought the BDS 3.5" lift kit ($800), a new steering stabilizer, and a couple pairs of MORE 5/8" boomerang shackles to clear the military wrap. I called a few places and was quoted around $400 to install the lift, so I did it myself (with some help). I removed the track bars, replaced the shocks with the BDS from the kit, replaced the springs, installed the drop Pitman arm, replaced the sway bar links, installed the brake line relocation brackets, and installed a 1-5/8" transfer case drop.
I also installed the MORE boomerang shackles.
The lift looked a little silly with the stock tires, so I promptly got a set of 5 Toyo 33x12.50R15 Open Country MTs and installed them on some Cragar 15x8 soft 8s.
Bigger tires meant a new speedometer gear so I installed a 34 tooth gear. I also ditched the brake line relocation brackets for some extended braided steel lines from Crown Performance and got my first experience in bleeding brakes.
In mid-November, my parking brake seized up, so I took the tensioner out and ran without a parking brake. I replaced all the springs and parts in the drums as some added insurance.
At the end of November, I continued my mission in replacing fluids and replaced the gear oil in the front and rear differentials and installed a Lubelocker reusable gasket in each.
In early December, I finally took care of a squeak by replacing the serpentine belt. No more squeak and I kept the old as a spare.
My girlfriend gave me grab handles and floor liners for Christmas to complete the set, so I now have floor mats in front, in the cargo area, and in front of the rear seats.
Since I hate working in the cold weather (and it does get cold here in NJ), I didn't do much at all in January or February. In March, I could not even move out of gear. I replaced the clutch master and slave cylinders and the problem was solved. I also installed the steering stabilizer and a Tuffy glove box. I also lubed everything I could fit the grease gun on.
<pic goes here>
A few days later, it was raining and when using my wipers, the rubber came off the wiper arms so I replaced the wipers. I also replaced the fluid in my AX5. Like every other fluid I've drained out, it came out black and had probably not been changed in a long time.
At the end of the month, I finally installed the rear bumper & tire carrier I bought from Eddie (Besrk) with a fresh powder coat finish.
I also took care of the slight rubbing issue I had at full lock by adjusting my steering stops.
<pic goes here>
April brought the first car wash, removal of my fender flares, installation of a third brake light, painting of the driver's side floor pan to take care of a slight rust issue, replacement of the windshield gaskets to take care of a leak, radiator replacement, cooling system flush (more black fluid!), and replacement of the upper/lower hoses, thermostat, and radiator cap. Busy month!
In May, I bought some center caps for the Toyos, but I soon removed the 33s to put the stockers back on in a Bronx-proofing effort. I was taking the Jeep to work again because of issues with my Ranger, so I didn't want to risk damage to the tires.
In June, I installed a soft top with soft doors.
I also installed some JKS Quick disconnects and replaced my bump stops (most of them were broken or breaking).
I also removed the factory mirror mounts from the doors to give it a bit of a cleaner look.
After school ended, I put the 33s back on and installed my new front bumper (another from Eddie).
Finally, in July, I got to some major projects. I installed my AA slip yoke eliminator, true neutral plate and Tom Wood rear driveshaft.
I replaced the pinion seal on my Dana 30 and painted my front driveshaft.
<Pic of driveshaft>
I replaced my transmission mount and torque arm stud.
I took out the Dana 35 and installed a Ford 8.8 axle.
I made a parking brake tensioner because my old one would not adjust.
I replaced my front calipers.
And here I am now. :D
I may need this post too for more pics of the above stuff... :)
Looks good, I've never seen your Jeep before :cheers: Now you just got to wheel it some.
You didn't have your rotors turned by any chance did you?
lookin good! Im just barely starting to tear into mine. We'll see how it goes...
Very nice man, your rig is pretty much what I want mine eventually to come to. Once I get my lift and tires, you should come wheeling with me and my club, your about 1 hour from my house and 30 mins from where my club is based out of.
Nice rear bumper too, I'm going to need something like that. Does Besrk have a website or is he more of a small private maker?
Can't wait to see more of those pictures of the radio install.
I started rebuilding my SM465. I've already gotten her open.
I'm contemplating buying a hydraulic press.
I like having a press. I use it mostly for bending metal, But it has seen it's share of bushings and bearings and whatever else I felt like smashing:laugh:
Your build is looking good. I was going to ask why you didn't have those wheel locking lug nuts with the special key. Then I remembered you were in the Bronx and having them slashed is always an option. Looks like it's progressing well and learning a lot. Last night a guy at work asked me if I thought it would have been better if I had gotten someone else to do the work on my jeep (I had just finished an 8.8 install and was putting the shocks on) I told him that would take all the fun out of it. Plus if it breaks only I am to blame.
hey, your name is Bob and you have a sweet YJ! My name is Bobby and I'm starting to build one myself! YAY! Seriously sick looking turn-around so far. Can't wait to see the new powerplant in action :)
Just got back from the Outer Banks in North Carolina. I took the Jeep onto the beach a couple times. That was pretty fun. :D
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