I really believe the cornerstone of any restoration project is good documentation. one never knows if they will need references in the reassembly process. Plus it's also a little therapeutic.
I am removing the cladding from the ZJ today. I need to assess the rust situation and get a JY list together of any panels i need and sheetmetal.
These are the tools I used to remove the cladding. I wrapped a Standard and a Phillips head screwdriver in duct tape to avoid any unnecessary scratches.
Starting at the rear wheel well. The back piece is held on by 3 screws located in the rear well. There are no clips holding this on just some glue. Once the screws are removed the piece will pop right off.
The back door trim is held on with 4 clips and a bolt located on the inside back edge of the back door. It is a (not sure what it is called) weird flowerbud looking nut. I forgot about it on the drivers door and ended up busting the bolt off. That was the only casualty in my removal. The passenger side nut must have been banged by something as it was deformed.
Once the bolt was removed I used my duct tape wrapped Standard screwdriver to pry behind the top edge of the trim and gently walk the screwdriver behind the cladding to pop it off each clip.
Once the top is freed from the clips, the bottom is just a matter of popping the tabs out of the compression slots on the bottom. Here is a look behind the cladding at the bottom of the clips.
Here is a shot of the rear door clips with the cladding off. Notice how dirty it gets under there. A little windex wiped it all right off. I was surprised that salt didn't get back there and start some rust.
The front door is held on by 6 clips and that is all. Repeat process used for the rear door minus the bolt.
The front piece is held on by 3 screws located in the front wheel well and one clip attaches it to the body.
Here is a shot of the clips on the wagon (and the dirt of course).
To remove the clips i used my standard screwdriver again. Place the screwdriver against the left side of the clip and give it a little tap to the right to pop the clip off the stud that holds it on. then with that loose just slide the clip upwards to free it from the top stud.
When done you have a pile of 22 clips. Hopefully all intact. I got all mine off with no damage.
And finally here is a shot after getting it all cleaned up. I think it looks alot better without the plastic so I think I am going to keep it off. I also debadged to drivers side. I like the clean uncluttered look.
I was awfully glad to see the clips held on with the studs instead of screws or plastic press in grommets. I will need to grind off the studs but it is much better than filling holes.