Bringing home the LJ
Headlamp wiring harness upgrade
Optima Red Top
BF Goodrich T/A KO 31x10.5x15
Failed O2 sensor
Mopar Step and nutsert
KC Windshield SlimLite and Carling Contura rocker switches
Tuffy 131 security storage drawer and Die-Tech Off-road mirror brackets
Tuffy Security Door Lockers
Currie front AntiRock
Shopping for new suspension
Tuffy glove box
American Flag decal
Four X Doctor Rocker Guards
Spidertrax 1-1/4" spacers (WHS-002)
Moab powder coated semi-gloss black
I created this build thread with two things in mind. First, I wanted to put together a sort of guide other members can follow when building up their own rigs. I spent a lot of time researching and feeling out the success and failures other members encountered. Second, I wanted a means to document the progress I make to my LJ and get some input. I plan to include as many pictures as possible when doing installs. I am open to and encourage feedback, overall I hope you enjoy.
First lets start off with the back story.
Back in 2007 I ran in to some mechanical problems with my own vehicle. I was fortunate enough to have a good friend who let me borrow his 2000 XJ. I had never driven any Jeeps before although they had always caught my eye from growing up camping and hiking. I quickly fell in love to say the least, the XJ was equipped with a 4.5" OME lift, 33", lockers front/rear and was a blast to drive.
Here is an older picture before the final lift but it gives you an idea (This is also how I came to fall in love with the OEM Moab).
Fast forward a year to 2008, I was under budget constraints but knew I wanted an XJ of my own. I found a local 88 XJ in pretty good condition with 180K. Boy was this a lucky find, I was able to pick it up for $1,500. The interior had been reupholstered, had the 7 speaker premium Jensen audio system, the extra comfortable tilt seats and the vehicle included a binder with service records dating back to day one including the original window sticker.
I picked up my new XJ on a lovely Saturday morning, topped off the tank and headed to the the In-N-Out on Sand Canyon Rd in Santa Clarita. We had planned this run weeks before I even laid eyes on the 88 XJ and it coincidently all lined up. From there, a half dozen of us continued up Sand Canyon Rd to Forest Route 3n17 (AKA the Santa Clara Truck Trail). We stopped to check out the old Nike Missile site, poke around and a few others snag the cache.
We continued along 3N17 until we reached the Northfork Ranger Station. Here, we stopped for a quick snack and restroom break. The rangers were very friendly and happy to chat for a bit; or just happy to come across someone willing to talk. I imagine they get an interesting bunch of people through there be it hikers trekking the Pacific Coast Trail or meth heads that are lost and looking for their grow spot (I speak from experience, we have bumped in to a number of these in the Angeles Forest over the years and it can be very uncomfortable to say the least but I digress.).
Staying on 3N17 we continued up to the Mt. Gleason. We stopped briefly in the campground and continue along to check out the AT&T Line Tower (When the road reopens I highly recommend checking this area out. There is a great view and I hope the line tower is at least somewhat intact).
Overall is was a great day and further sparked my interest in off road adventures. However, it reinforced that I enjoy scenic mountain trails and have no interest in mud.
Forth of July weekend 2009 we made a trip up to Mammoth Lakes and did some camping at Convict Lake. While there we took the XJ up the dirt road to Laurel Lakes. The road is rather easy and could easily be traveled by any vehicle with moderate clearance if conditions are in your favor. We made it to a few hundred yards below the Laurel Lakes Trail before we ran in to snow blocking the road. We hiked the rest of the way passing by a few other hikers. A friend tried fishing the lake with no luck. In the Summer this is a common hunting area for quail.
We made a few additional camping trips in the Angeles Forest and out by Yucca Valley.
OK, maybe that was more than a little back story but it is all about character building right? Plus, this is my build thread