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kaleo333 04-30-2014 12:16 PM

WJ or KJ?
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I'm looking at switching to a different model jeep.

Anyway, I own an 05 KJ and recently I was trying to get up some opposite flex ramps and the lack of articulation brought on by the front sway bar kept me from getting up something simple even with LSD's in both axles. I think not being able to disconnect my sway bars really puts me at a disadvantage. I've put a fair amount into this car just to be bested by a friend in an 04 WJ with the same height lift and 32's.

Here's where it gets interesting, my dad has an identical WJ (even the same color and special edition) but stock. Should I trade my dad for his car and start fresh with a SFA? Mileage is a big concern but the overdrive gears should help because I do almost all highway driving during the week.

05 KJ
3.7 gas 17-23 mpg
6-speed (I like manual but I don't like the lack of instant power)
4.10 gears and true tracs in the front and rear
3.5" lift with soon to be 32's
CIA, magnaflow
Rock lizard rock rails, full factory skids, tow hooks

04 WJ
4.7 gas ~15-20?
automatic, better for rock crawling?
factory skid plates and tow hooks
how I would want to set it up:
I would leave the gears alone but maybe do some lockers
Same exhaust work and armor
4-5" lift with 32" duratracs for mileage

One small option is for an older JK... but that would be difficult and it would be a sport. Is that better than my other two options?

So the final question is really, which car is better overall, considering I'll be driving about 140-175 miles per week (80% highway) and still want to be able to wheel and not get hung up with IFS.

Anyone have any advice or insight on this? Any comments are appreciated even if you're just agreeing that one car would be better.

some picture of the two cars (the grand would come stock)

streetglideok 04-30-2014 12:27 PM

Where all do you take it, or plan to take it?

kaleo333 04-30-2014 12:41 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I take is all around Colorado springs and Denver but eventually want to go to Moab and I just think for rock crawling I can't keep the libby. I need more articulation up from and it can't be 6000 to lift 6 inches...this is too much roll for a simple curb

veiri86 04-30-2014 12:49 PM

I would vote for the WJ, besides the solid axle, it has lots of power and it is very comfortable commuter on the highway. (Personal Opinion)

kaleo333 04-30-2014 01:14 PM

That's what I think I'm going to do, has 200000+ miles but maybe an engine rebuild is in the works. I do need to try to maintain mileage....

streetglideok 04-30-2014 02:01 PM

Remember, the 4.7L is the same basic engine as the 3.7L, so the cooling concerns, valve seat issues etc, apply here as well. A WJ IMO is a pretty decent vehicle, and was my first choice before my KJ. It has basically the same rear suspension as ours, with that balljoint that goes bad a lot. For the mild and moderate trails, the KJ should be able to do it, with a competent driver. TJKJ wheeled his as an IFS for a while before he did the SFA swap. The WJ can ride like a caddy if set up right as well. Not real crazy about the t-case options for them. Also remember the axles are not the strongest under them either. If Eagle rock, Saran Wrap, Chinaman's gulch etc are on your list, then the WJ, built up would be the best choice. If not, then its up to you. Those kind of miles, if the tranny has 100k or so on it, figure on a rebuild of it.

kaleo333 04-30-2014 02:19 PM

I agree with the T-case options... I don't like the 4HI 4LO only, also hurts my mileage which is a concern. I am looking at those trails eventually as well. I'm aware that unfortunately I'll be looking at engine and tranny repairs.... I'm just sick of the body roll from the articulation deprived IFS (although mileage and manual are awesome)

veiri86 04-30-2014 02:34 PM

T case issue can be easily resolved. Search 242hd swap for WJ. which will give you the same options as your kj concerning the four wheel drive

Sent from ME

kaleo333 04-30-2014 02:39 PM

I like the sound of that, would be able to anticipate better mileage since there is a 2WD option?

veiri86 04-30-2014 02:58 PM

Hmmm not really. But it will give you the choice of the 2wd. By the way, the all wheel drive is not literally all wheel drive, it will be driving rear wheel drive till one of your rear wheels starts to spin more than the other, then the all wheel drive will be engaged automatically. So the 4hi and 4lo is not that bad as you think

Sent from ME

kaleo333 04-30-2014 03:13 PM

I'm actually aware of that I've just never been a fan of the slip based system although it has worked will before. I like the idea of the T-case starting in 4WD but the 4HI never seems to hold the car back

veiri86 04-30-2014 03:22 PM

I don't go for rock crawling. Mainly I go for dune bashing, and am really happy with the Quadra drive system

Sent from ME

kaleo333 04-30-2014 03:34 PM

I guess if there's no mileage change it isn't really worth changing

streetglideok 04-30-2014 04:04 PM

I have heard it's not as stout as say a 241 like what mine has, and probably yours too since yours is of the same vintage as mine. I went with 3.73 gears on mine and did it myself, and came out about where I was before the bigger tires. I have heard yanking the rear swaybar out completely helps some, but we still are limited with the IFS. Chinaman's isn't really on my list, so it's not a big handicap to me right now. We're putting our money into another project at the moment, so a WJ or similar won't happen anytime soon here.

kaleo333 04-30-2014 09:43 PM

I guess I could remove a sway bar, but I don't think that's enough. And honestly, I'm not a fan of manual offroad when you have to balance the clutch for a slow controlled climb.

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