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-   -   Kevin108's 2000 XJ Build (http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f177/kevin108s-2000-xj-build-867428/)

Kevin108 09-28-2009 06:49 PM

Kevin108's 2000 XJ Build, "Outsider"
 
http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...andnow2013.jpg


I have really enjoyed reading others' build threads here. I didn't think I'd ever write one since I planned to leave my XJ more or less stock, but I keep doing things to it and my original plans are continually altered. With that in mind and a cold Yuengling at hand, I guess I'll start telling my story.

I started thinking about a new daily driver in May of 2009. I'd sold my 05 Corolla in December the previous year and after almost 6 months back in my 87 Silverado, I was realizing that I needed something more practical as a daily driver though I wanted a something somewhat capable as well.

I really didn't have any clue what I might wind up with, so I started a post at GlockTalk. Those guys know everything!

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin108 (Post 13015888)
I have an 87 Silverado on 35s that started life as an offroad rig and wound up as a work truck for side jobs and a tow rig for hauling the ATVs. It's also been a daily driver for the last 6 months. As gas continues to creep back towards $3 a gallon, it's around-town 8 mpg has me eyeing something smaller for regular driving duties. I had an 05 Corolla that was a great car, just not at all what I needed for the places I go and the things I like to do.

My shopping specs:

$10,000 or less
Must be 4x4
At least 15 mpg
Auto tranny preferred substantially but a manual is acceptable on a sweet deal

My current train of thought is a small 4-door SUV like a Liberty, RAV4 or CRV. I don't know anything about them though, if some years were better than others, etc. Any suggestions?

The 8th reply suggested an XJ. I eyed some TJs as well but I quickly realized that they were priced about 2 times more than an XJ of the same year even though they had essentially the same drive train and other components!

The XJ was it. Good engine, solid front axle, able to tow the ATVs, available with 4 doors, and a fantastic platform should I ever decide to build another offroad rig. Then I couldn't find one to save my life! There was nothing out there! Dealers had everything and wanted $2,000 more than their junk was worth.

Finally, after giving up and 2 months, I happened to find a CraigsList add for my XJ. After a couple of test drives, inspecting every square inch of it and a weekend of waiting on the bank to do their thing, I got to bring home my new XJ.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...epandtruck.jpg

After a couple of days, the AC started acting up and after a couple of weeks or so, the blower quit completely. I was really aggravated that these problems hadn't surfaced during the test drives but such is life with a 10-year-old rig. I rode around for days with a multimeter in the passenger seat and after pulling the blower out all together, I found the problem to be the plug going into the blower motor resistor.

At some point the blower had gone bad overheating the resistor. Both of those had been replaced. When the resistor overheated, it ruined the plug as well but that didn't stop a previous owner, which was not the guy I bought it from, from faking a fix.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...burntplug2.jpg

I'm yet to find the proper plug but the insulated spade connectors I added that fit tightly on the resistor contacts are working great.

Around the same time, I installed a Curt Class III receiver on the rear along with a wiring harness for the trailer. The hitch installation was easy save for one bolt on the heat shield between the muffler and the gas tank. I managed to strip the guts of a cheap ratchet and even with Snap-On stuff, a 2' breaker bar and an impact wrench, it was still hard to get that bolt out. The wiring made up for the hitch's difficulty by being plug and play.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...orum/hitch.jpg

After I got the hitch installed, I made a test run towing my ATVs at highway speeds on the interstate on a 105 day. I got my transmission temps up to 191 so I started shopping transmission coolers. I bought a 25,000 lb-rated unit and set it up in front of the mechanical fan so that it always had some amount of air moving over it.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...m/cooler01.jpg
Mounting location


http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...m/cooler02.jpg
I sleeved the upper hose. I felt that wind could make it make contact with the condenser. I also split a section of hose and wrapped around the opening of the hole to protect the active hoses.


http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...m/cooler04.jpg
The view from underneath


http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...m/cooler06.jpg
Where the hoses meet the hard lines


Around the same time, I mounted a 3-D-cell Mag-Lite to the passenger side A-pillar.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...m/maglite3.jpg

A week or so after that I painted the trim.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...rum/trim05.jpg

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...rum/trim09.jpg

I gave it a good wash last week and painted the wiper arms.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...rum/washed.jpg

DylanYazel 09-28-2009 08:28 PM

looks good but removing the side trim instead of painting it ends up looking alot cleaner and crisp. just my opinion but check the forums here and see if you like them without trim.

Haleyrz 09-28-2009 09:55 PM

Look real good! I love the dark blue. Take a look at my thread if you wanna see no aide molding. What other plans do you have?

cherokeeKID 09-29-2009 12:19 AM

i like your transmission cooler setup... pretty sweet:2thumbsup:

Kevin108 09-29-2009 05:16 AM

Next up I will be sandblasting and repainting some steel wheels to mount some MTs to and installing a front 2" receiver and rear locker.

http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f1...teelwheels.jpg

Kevin108 09-29-2009 05:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Haleyrz (Post 8012119)
Look real good! I love the dark blue. Take a look at my thread if you wanna see no aide molding. What other plans do you have?

Thanks! Reading your thread was the final push towards writing my own. Your project is coming along nicely as well!

I thought about removing the molding and from what I saw, the condition of the double-sided tape that holds them on would certainly facilitate that option. I felt like the molding offers some protection in parking lots with careless people opening their doors against your rig and all the paint on this rig is still about 95% perfect so I'm going to leave it for the time being.

After the locker and front receiver, I'd like to get some skid plates. They would be useful with a lift and even more so now at stock height. Rock sliders seem like a good piece of insurance as well. One day down the road, custom bumpers aren't out of the question either.

I do things in fits and spells though. I've got some body work and other prep to do to my Silverado. Dad and I took our 50 Chevy Styleline and 72 Chevy Cheyenne to a car show this past weekend and I won a $500 gift certificate for a local body shop so I'll finally be able to get the rusty, stretched door skin on my driver's side door replaced.

I have way more projects than I do time or money.

Quote:

Originally Posted by cherokeeKID (Post 8012640)
i like your transmission cooler setup... pretty sweet:2thumbsup:

It's working great so far though if I ever get serious about trail riding I may route some things differently. It was somewhat difficult to get the little plastic mounting wires through all 3 sets of fins between the trans cooler, AC condenser and radiator. I actually used an ice pick, a lot of twisting and very light forward pressure to get the holes to line up.

srmitchell 09-29-2009 09:18 AM

Wow, yours looks just like mine, 2 years ago.

:)

tock172 09-29-2009 10:06 AM

I like your transmission cooler set up. I am planning on doing something with my OE unit. I plan on towing another XJ in the near future, and I may replace my small one with a larger unit for better cooling.

Haleyrz 09-29-2009 04:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin108 (Post 8012993)
Thanks! Reading your thread was the final push towards writing my own. Your project is coming along nicely as well!

I thought about removing the molding and from what I saw, the condition of the double-sided tape that holds them on would certainly facilitate that option. I felt like the molding offers some protection in parking lots with careless people opening their doors against your rig and all the paint on this rig is still about 95% perfect so I'm going to leave it for the time being.

After the locker and front receiver, I'd like to get some skid plates. They would be useful with a lift and even more so now at stock height. Rock sliders seem like a good piece of insurance as well. One day down the road, custom bumpers aren't out of the question either.

I do things in fits and spells though. I've got some body work and other prep to do to my Silverado. Dad and I took our 50 Chevy Styleline and 72 Chevy Cheyenne to a car show this past weekend and I won a $500 gift certificate for a local body shop so I'll finally be able to get the rusty, stretched door skin on my driver's side door replaced.

I have way more projects than I do time or money.



It's working great so far though if I ever get serious about trail riding I may route some things differently. It was somewhat difficult to get the little plastic mounting wires through all 3 sets of fins between the trans cooler, AC condenser and radiator. I actually used an ice pick, a lot of twisting and very light forward pressure to get the holes to line up.

Thanks! Not much "building" going on with mine cuz i'm poor after buying it, but I like to track my progress. And mine is a base model SE....so it didn't come with side molding. Sounds like your jeep will be pretty awesome! :thumbsup:

Kevin108 09-29-2009 07:44 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by srmitchell (Post 8013885)
Wow, yours looks just like mine, 2 years ago.

:)

Have you noticed post #165 in your build thread? :thumbsup:

Kevin108 09-29-2009 08:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tock172 (Post 8014197)
I like your transmission cooler set up. I am planning on doing something with my OE unit. I plan on towing another XJ in the near future, and I may replace my small one with a larger unit for better cooling.

Wow. Hope your brakes feel better than mine! :eek:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Haleyrz (Post 8016909)
Thanks! Not much "building" going on with mine cuz i'm poor after buying it, but I like to track my progress. And mine is a base model SE....so it didn't come with side molding. Sounds like your jeep will be pretty awesome! :thumbsup:

Well, Christmas is coming up. Maybe you can get some goodies then. (I know because I saw the damn trees all lit up at Lowes tonight. Already!)

There's not even anywhere local to wheel. I've got sand about 2 hours a way, rocks about 3 hours away and trails about 4 hours away. I don't have anybody to wheel with either. With that in mind, I'm really trying to keep myself on track and keep my build within reason.

And I just hooked up with a local Jeep Meetup group! :2thumbsup:

tock172 09-29-2009 08:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kevin108 (Post 8018350)
Wow. Hope your brakes feel better than mine! :eek:



Well, Christmas is coming up. Maybe you can get some goodies then. (I know because I saw the damn trees all lit up at Lowes tonight. Already!)

There's not even anywhere local to wheel. I've got sand about 2 hours a way, rocks about 3 hours away and trails about 4 hours away. I don't have anybody to wheel with either. With that in mind, I'm really trying to keep myself on track and keep my build within reason.

And I just hooked up with a local Jeep Meetup group! :2thumbsup:

Yup brakes work great!

mxboarder17 09-29-2009 08:59 PM

I sprayed my side plastic just like you did. It took forever to tape it all off for just a little bit of spray. Well worth it though. Looking good.

Kevin108 09-29-2009 10:14 PM

Mine went pretty quick but since we're down to one painter at work now, I do prep work all the time to help him out. It was a nice day and I was just chilling on an upside-down milk crate seat and listening to my iPod playing through the stereo. I didn't mind it one bit. On the other side though I didn't use all the crazy newspaper, just two runs of tape.

Then again, I really have no idea how long it took because I stopped after doing the left side to help Dad install a roll pan on our 72 Chevy pick up.

srmitchell 09-29-2009 10:18 PM

Ah, I see. Thanks man.


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