I bought my CJ on June 19,2009. After looking for a CJ for about a year, I found one 2 states away. I kept looking for jeeps from other states because everyone I found locally were halfway rusted through.
The CJ that I found was in New Mexico, over 1000 miles away!
So, my friend and I thought it would be a great weekend road trip- to drive over in my Saturn (car) and Drive the Cj and the car back. In retrospect, it was not my most thoughtout plan.
After about 2.5 hours of driving the 2 vehicles back, the jeep over heated leaving us and the CJ almost standed in the Texas desert over 800 miles from home. We spent the better part of a day in front a Napa store. None of the things we changes seamed to help.
After a really long day, we left the CJ at a gas station and drove to get a uhaul and towed it the rest of the way home the following day. Thank goodness it had a tow bar!
After a really long weekend (about 2700 miles between the 2 vehicles), I could not wipe the grin off my face because this is my dream vehicle.
So this is what I bought:
85 CJ-7 Renegade
no rust on the frame or body
D30 with hub lockers
AMC 20 with a moser one piece and detroit
31" x terrains
approx. 2-4" of lift
"custom" rear swing arm w/ to jerry can mounts
33" tall spare
rebuild the 258 I6
twin stick the D300
redo dash and gauges
keep the cool looks and proportions of the CJ-7
After driving the Jeep around town for a week, I replaced the Battery and starter. I also filled the trans, xcase, and difs with fluid and found out the right seal on the amc 20 leaked and the from output on the D300 leaked.
I also added the over sized spare because I think a Jeep looks better with a spare
I tested the 4 wheel drive out in one hole (which turned out to be much deeper than I thought)
The jeep ended up overheating in the mud hole and got out. After that, a friend's dad (whos a mechanic) came to check out the CJ, turns out the radiator was plugged up pretty bad. It was pulled and boiled soon after. When it was reinstalled, I put a fan shroud in too that I got off of ebay. And from the mud picture, you can see I was high centered, so
I learned a few things that day...
Dont go wheeling a lone
Dont take the top and doors off if there is any chance of MUD
I broke the interior of the jeep down soon after that and remove the carpet and seats to get rid of the mud
next weekend dad and I greased a lot of the underside and replace some of the bushings. We also learned how to "burp" a radiator. We hooked up the radio too. The PO said that why the battery was always going bad, so we put an inline switch on the dash in an existing hole. And added a new jerry can for gas and a used one for something later on...
The next weekend we attacked the rear seals.
I had been checking the dif and xcase every couple of days and adding when its needed, but that was getting old. So
My friend's dad, him and I did all the work. But after breaking one puller and bending the bolt on another, we brought the axles to a local shop to be pressed on. The next day we finished the install and drove the CJ home (about 20 miles from friend's shop)
After letting the CJ sit for a week (out of town), I went to fire it up and the battery is dead, so I had to jump it off of my car
After about 4 blocks of driving, the transfer case slipped into neutral (I tought). Being that the tow bar was still on the jeep and it was getting dark, I called a friend to tow me to the shop. About 15 block later going about 45 mph, we see the left axle and tires pass roll past up. Yeah they came out
we pulled over and called a tow truck
the back plate had groud down as it was dragged. The lock right and bearings had come off and it was not a good night.
The next few mods were things I got of JF site, write ups and random pictures. Removed the stock rectangular tail lights for some round ones. I still need to put a reverse light back on, which will be round. And we relocated the license plate to the tire carrier by just bending the lp holder.
Got my co pilot to test the new light for me
After all the work, I figured the CJ would like to go camping so we loaded up.
And we needed to move a chair closer to the fire (the jeep way)
A few weeks later, I decided to get the front aux lights working and make my CJ a little bit safer. Put in another fuse box and routed the radio, cb, and lights thru it.
(not finished when picture was taken)
Found out the PO used some duct tape to secure some of the wire ends along with some other various types of tape.
The lights work great now and are really bright The only problem is now I want rear aux lights..... man this Jeep thing cost money