Specs: 1997 XJ SE, 4.0, 4x4, AX15, 3.07, NP231, D30 front, C8.25 rear
I've had my XJ for two years now but have only just started thinking about investing some money into things that aren't broken. I don't "wheel" my XJ really, but I do need to access some remote job sites during Maine's rough winters.
When I bought the Jeep for $1,200 two years ago the rear leaf springs were sagging pretty well. Six months ago I had a spring snap on both sides in the same week and knew I had to do something quickly. I couldn't afford to lift it the way I wanted so I started with a 3" RC lift with the full leaf packs, front coils, and 4 of the "upgraded" shocks available in the kit at the time. I figure this is really my starting point:
I ran into a myriad of vibrations after the lift. I hadn't touched the track bar, tie road, sway bar links, etc... because I didn't really understand what they did. Here's what we started with under there:
I installed a double shear track bar from Iron Rock Offroad, a HD tie rod, new drag-link, and steering stabilizer.
The plastic trim and bumper end caps covering the lower portion of the rear quarter panel was only covering some major rust damage. I don't weld, so I cut and folded what I could and patched the rest with small sheet metal patches riveted into place. This picture also shows the new rubber, Toyo Open Country A/T 31x10.5x15.
I'll get some pictures of my hand-throttle as well. $12 at the local bike shop.
On my to-do list:
- Swap in 3.55 axles from an automatic XJ to bring me up from 3.07. My axles have 213,000 miles but the "new" ones are at 120,000. I'd like to put a limited slip in the 8.25 at the same time and do the disc brake conversion.
- Install air compressor capable of running air tools for short periods of time, inflating standard truck tires, and filling portable air tanks.
- H4 harness/housing upgrade
- Rooftop storage for Stabila levels, transit poles, etc... Perhaps inside a cushioned PVC pipe with screw-cap ends
- 4 pintle injector upgraded
- 63mm bored out throttle body
- Install new media deck - I've been whining about the PO's cheap deck for too long
- Install leaf spring sliders from Liquid Iron Industries along with a rear AAL.
- Somehow incorporate a small CB radio subtly into the interior - which may lead to building a custom center console out of fiberglass
- Install exterior work lights with in cab and exterior switches.
Open to criticism.