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RIGID LED Light Blowout Sale - All Sizes, All Series, all Truc-Lite LED Headlights! OCONEE OFF-ROAD 706-534-9955Jeep Wrangler Bushwacker Flat Fender Flare Sale at Baselin

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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:24 PM   #1
Schaef81
Registered User
1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Schaef81's Build Thread

Hey everyone I suppose it is time to write up a build thread. This build thread is going to be both a recap of what I have done already and my future plans for my Jeep. I want to thank everyone who's helped me thus far on the build my jeep wouldn't be what it is today without they're help, especially Schaef89 (my brother) and Jim (My father) this build has definitely brought family bonding time at all hours of the day and night.

It all started with my first car/jeep my 1981 CJ-5. When I bought it the engine, GM 151, was fresh off a rebuild with only 5,000 miles on it since. The PO claimed he had too many toys and the wife was unhappy with it sitting in the garage. I picked it up for less then 2000 dollars. I thought I got it for a decent price, I was wrong. Turns out the body was completely rusted out, being more bondo then metal and the frame needed welding repairs. Being 15 at the time and unable to drive anyway it turned out to be a project I could work on in the driveway. Without this jeep I wouldn't be anywhere close to where I am as a mechanic. It was truly a love hate relationship (especially one I had to replace the clutch in the driveway while laying on 20 inches of snow, needless to say my mother was not pleased when I ruined my nice columbia winter jacket..)

Here are some photos of the Jeep before a sold it.





ha and yes those are headers on a 4 banger....




Some Interior Pics..





The reason I needed to get a more reliable vehicle was because at that time I was enrolled at West Virginia University, a 4-4.5 hour drive from my hometown and with the CJ's body being so bad, and the lack of time to restore it I needed something newer. Lucky for me, my best friend had a 1990 Jeep YJ that he didn't need nor wanted anymore...

The day I brought my the yj home....



For the next 4 months the new-to-me jeep ran like a dream. With the 31's the 2.5L had plenty of power to get me to and from school faster then the CJ ever did. The only things needed replacing so far was the radiator, I put a 1 1/4 inch shackle lift on so my tires didn't rub my flares, replaced the exhaust manifold gasket to get rid of the awful bucking I experienced at school and just routine maintenance.

Because the winters in West Virginia were cold even for me, someone who has had a soft top year round for 4 years prior. I felt the need to upgrade to a hardtop. Lucky for me I came across a grey hardtop for 300 bucks on craigslist that was in need of a paint job but in solid shape and steel doors for 500 also a craigslist find.

The following pictures are of the installation of the hardtop/steel doors. The maroon paint was sanded and painted over using Rustoleum Gloss Black..

With the soft top and essential hardware removed and aligning the doors




Yep that's me on the right trying to beat the rainstorm that was rolling in..

Shortly after the hardtop installation I began to experience problems. The 2.5L had 155,000 miles and blow-by was getting excessive (had to change the air filter every trip home from college). I tried the RESTORE product and helped somewhat but wasn't a permanent fix. I could live with just blow by because I was planning on going to a 4.0 down the road after school. The timing chain was replaced by the PO but the chain tensioner was not, so in the winter of 2010 I went to work in 30 degree weather in my driveway to replace the tensioner. Sorry I do not have any photos for this period of time, I didn't think this project would come to what it is today.

After the timing chain job was competed, which was delayed to working 50 hours over break a rod knock began to show light (same day i needed to head back to school, imagine that). My brother, fresh out of college was still working at near my hometown and was living at home was able to diagnose and follow protocol to measure rod bearing specs and crankshaft specs as well, he's a mechanical engineer. Turns out my crank was scored and the rod bearings shot.

The decision was made by me and all concerned parties that the cheapest and easiest way to get my jeep back on the road as fast as possible was to swap 2.5L engines with a used one. The search took a few weeks but eventually I found a motor for 300 with 120,000 miles on it. It was ideal but it was essential at the time to get my jeep back on the road.

The day the engine was picked up;



Thanks to Schaef89 who bought the engine stand, and did crucial degreasing of this once very muddy engine. For this period of time I was at college 4 hours away, so I am blessed that my brother went through all the trouble he did for me to find this and prep it for installation.

More photos of the new to me engine;




That isnt oil covering the engine, just degreaser before drying

When spring break rolled around it was time to get some serious work done. The goal was to get the engine out and the newer engine in.

Pictures of the progression of the engine swap;


Unhookin all the necessary fuel lines, vacuum hoses, exhaust components, and removing the transmission. A block was placed under the bellhousing to keep balance of the transmission for easier reinstallation.


Hooked up to the cherry picker and ready to be yanked out


The only time i was glad my jeep wasn't lifted when this swap occurred. Removing the front clip would've been salt for the wound at this point. Notice the front bumper, It was raining on and off all day.

Empty engine bay and ready for the goods...




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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:25 PM   #2
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
The new engine going in. Note: I was swapping from a 90 V-Belt driven 2.5L engine to a 91 Serpentine Belt Driven 2.5L. Some components had to be adapted. The alternator had to be hooked up to an external regulator and power steering hoses had to be purchased for that particular year (91).



Dropping in and aligning the new engine;


Motor mounts bolted tight and ready for accessories to be reinstalled;
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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:29 PM   #3
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
A mistake made during this swap was which flywheel was needed to be swapped with the 91 Motor. Because I was keeping the TBI fuel system the flywheel from the 90 2.5L needed to be bolted to the 91 2.5L. This was a mental error during the swap and wasn't done until later. Once all components were hooked up and the distrubtor set to appropriate degree the engine fired up. It was a long wait but when the engine finally turned over all of the work seemed to pay off
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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:34 PM   #4
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
I was home for the summer and had bought my lift springs previous to when the engine took a dive on me. So installing the lift and getting larger tires was the top of my priority list. During my college career I have been working at an automotive shop not too far away from my house. I was lucky enough to be given an opportunity to install my lift and tires there using hydraulic lifts and air tools (usually using hand tools on the reg). I went with the Rough Country 4 inch lift for the time being. It was cheaper then the rest and Ive heard good things in regards to quality since the new generation leaf springs were manufactured. Because a spare set of hands were hard to come by during the lift install pictures were taken afterwards:

After the lift and unbalanced (at the time) super swampers were installed:



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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:39 PM   #5
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Since the lift and the larger tires, state laws required proper cover of the tire treads. I went with Xenon 6 inch flat fender style flares because not many YJs had them and I wanted to be "original" in some way.

Here's a Pic after the Xenon Flares were installed:



So far I have no regrets with my decision with Xenon. Customer service was very helpful when I was in need of another turn signal lense.....fell off on the highway. The only con of the flares was the turn signal light installation. I just don't agree with the whole setup because even to change a dead bulb it's a hassle to reinstall them in the flare.
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Unread 11-10-2011, 04:41 PM   #6
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Nothing much as changed since the flares. I upgraded to 33x12.50 15 BFG Mud-terrain KM2s because the Super Swampers were dry rotted. I have been nothing but impressed with the BFG. There is hardly any road noise (not that i cared) with them and has a relatively smooth ride, for a jeep. After I swap my transfercases (bad output bearing) I want to test them out in the snow. Maybe a Rausch Creek Winter Run is in order??
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Unread 11-13-2011, 11:02 AM   #7
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
I will be swapping my transfercase out for a newer one. The output bearing is shot and I can freely move the yoke around with simply my hand. I picked up a transfercase out of a 95 from another forum member which means I'm converting from the mechanical speedo to the electrical. Does anyone know if it is as simple as swapping the mechanical part to the 95 case or do I need to crack the case open and change internals as well?
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Unread 12-12-2011, 01:43 PM   #8
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Made the decision to just fix the output bearing in my original transfercase. It'll be a good learning experience and I won't have to deal with the speedometer not working. My overall plan is to install an SYE for a mechanical speedo to the 95 transfercase I bought that will make it compatible with my mechanical speedometer. Then Ill swap that case in in the future and get rid of that tcase drop and install a CV shaft.
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Unread 12-18-2011, 11:14 AM   #9
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Every since the engine swap there has been a smell of burning oil when driving at highway speeds. At first I thought it was a leaking oil pan when I discovered the side of the pan wet and starter to be saturated in oil. I replaced the oil pan gasket and the leak persisted. Upon further examination it appeared the distributor seal was leaking at the mount on the block.

As you can tell the mount is very wet from oil leaking from it. It's been leaking down the side of the block and onto the oil pan


Distributor back in and ready to rock and roll.


To replace the seal took me only about 30 mins. Very simple fix and hopefully depletes the burning oil smell I was gifted with on the highways.
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Unread 12-20-2011, 07:16 PM   #10
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
I've made the executive decision to pull the transfercase this weekend (yes X-mas weekend). I figure the best gift I can give myself is the gift of reliable 4x4. I'll have pics up after the work is complete.
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Unread 01-13-2012, 10:18 PM   #11
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Over winter break I didn't get a chance to swap my transfercases. Time constraints and weather didn't help the cause. However I hope to be able to do the swap over my spring break and be able to make a trip to Rausch Creek early in the summer. I am not a huge fan of being without a vehicle and because of that I hate rushing anything unless absolutely having to.

In regards to the transfercase swapping being from electronic to mechanical from what I have heard/researched I can get a VSS from a 91 transfercase because 91 was the only case to have both mechanical and electrical components and install it into the 95 transfercase which will be replacing my 90 case with a shotty output shaft bearing and still have functionality of my speedometer. The part number I am referring to is SC-108. Anyone have any experience with this?
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Unread 02-11-2012, 09:09 AM   #12
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Ok guys no real update. I haven't gotten a change to swap in the transfercase because I am still trying to research/piece together the essential parts I need to retain function of my speedo. Any advice will be appreciated.

More so I have been trying to tackle my Idle problem. I replaced the ISC yesterday and adjusted the TPS into the correct spec. but the problem persists. The problem is basically when I start the jeep in the morning (cold) the rpms surge and down fall until maybe 30 seconds. After replacing the ISC I noticed the rpms don't go nearly as high. Another symptom is when I go to drive away the rpms surge to the point I don't need to use the gas until I need to go faster then 10 mph. I noticed this problem when coming to a stop sign, I put the clutch in and the rpms sky rocket to between 2000 and 2500.

I inspected the exhaust manifold that I presume to be cracked anyway and have a new one on the way. I do have a broken stud in the foremost location of the manifold but don't hear/feel any leak at that location. All other bolts are tight. There is a tick near the rear of the manifold which is common and is why I will replace it.

Any help would be awesome!
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Unread 02-15-2012, 04:34 PM   #13
Schaef81
Registered User
1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Ordered up the exhaust manifold and necessary gaskets today. Went with a stock replacement after witnessing the troubles my brother went through with his borla. Work will begin March 4th when I am home for spring break. I am hoping this will take care of my idle issue. Seems like the manifold on there now has been there since my jeep's birth.

Also a little side note a found an awesome website to track down discontinued parts from the dealer. partsvoice.com. I was looking for the egr tube gasket (tube that runs from egr to manifold) the local dealer didn't have it. I got part number and just googled it. Found this website and got the part from a dealer in New Hampshire. Awesome
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Unread 02-18-2012, 07:13 PM   #14
Schaef81
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Poser shot today

Fortunately it was the only parking spot left in the whole lot (that wasn't reserved). Guess I don't have to worry about someone taking it when I leave and come back

I came out to this when I went to leave. I guess this is what happens when a snow pile is present in a parking lot scarce of parking spaces. Everyone wants a piece of it. So sad.
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Unread 02-18-2012, 07:27 PM   #15
Schaef81
Registered User
1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Lititz, Pennsylvania
Posts: 322
Also I was going through some old pictures and came across some of these. This is what happens when you try and be "that guy" and high center. Story of my life..

Stranded.....


Driving out....finally
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