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RIGID LED Light Blowout Sale - All Sizes, All Series, all ECGS Black Friday Sale!!6th Annual, Beat Your Wife to the Credit Card Sale!

View Poll Results: Which direction should I go?
Weekend Mud Machine, don't fix the body 36 17.39%
Beach cruiser, fix the body 61 29.47%
Resto-Mod. Nice body and paint with a screamin motor 110 53.14%
Voters: 207. You may not vote on this poll

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Unread 10-17-2008, 12:32 PM   #1
danheit
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1979 CJ7 
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Little River, SC
Posts: 1,234
1979 CJ7 Build Thread (Pic Heavy)

Well guys, I have never done a build thread before, although I have built 6 Jeeps since being a member of JF. I figured that this one would be a great one to follow up on. I have thrown around some pics already in different threads, but here is the official one for the ole girl. Here goes:

1979 CJ7, purchased by me on 10/14/2008 for $300 USD.
Came with several boxes of extra parts, incl. new seat covers, xtra steering wheel, some original parts, xtra chrome air cleaner, carb tuning kit,etc.
304 V8 AMC motor, Crane Cam, Edelbrock Intake and carb, HP Ignition, etc.
Turbo 400 Auto Trans, stock
Quadratrac T-case with Low Range, Stock
Jeep is believed to be a Levi's Edition, or at least have a good bit of Levi's upgrades from the dealer.
Jeep was purchased from the second owner, who has owned it since nearly new. All service records were included with the Jeep.
Front and Rear axles are "custom trussed", supposedly by Richard (****) Cepek himself, although I have not found any service records indicating this. However, I have known the PO for some time, and believe him to be an honest guy.
Jeep has a Skyjacker SoftRide 2.5" lift and 33"tires
Body is shot.
Here are pics from the day of purchase, still located in the PO's back yard.




FRONT COWL BELOW THE W/S FRAME IS COMPLETELY ROTTEN AND MISSING.



WINDSHIELD FRAME IS ROTTEN, CAUSING THE MORE "AERODYNAMIC" LOOK. FLOORS ARE GONE IN THE FRONT, SIDE OF JEEP IS LOOSE FROM THE REST OF THE TUB WHERE IT CONNECTS.



REAR DIAMOND PLATE IS OBVIOUSLY COVERING UP YEARS OF RUST AND SOME BONDO, ACCORDING TO THE PO. TAILGATE IS IN SURPRISINGLY GOOD CONDITION. REAR BUMPER WILL BE THE FIRST THING TO GO



AGAIN, MORE ROT. SEVERAL WASP NESTS WERE LOCATED BEHIND THE ROTTEN COWL AND IN THE RR WHEELWELL. TOOK 9 CANS OF WASP AND HORNET KILLER TO GET THEM FAR ENOUGH AWAY TO LET ME MOVE THE JEEP.




INTERIOR SEEMS TO BE A LEVI'S EDITION. ALL SEAT BUTTONS ARE STILL THERE, I HAVE THE FACTORY BLUE SOFT DOORS AND THE FACTORY FRAME AND ALL HARDWARE. CENTER CONSOLE IS STILL THERE. SEAT FRAMES ARE PAST BEING SHOT. DRIVER SEAT IS BEING HELD UP BY A CINDERBLOCK SITTING ON THE FRAME OF THE JEEP.



REAR OF THE TUB IS SURPRISINGLY SOLID, CONSIDERING THE CONDITION OF THE REST OF THE JEEP. JUST A WHOLE LOT OF CRAP TO CLEAN OUT.



FRONT AXLE AND REAR AXLE HAVE YET TO BE IDENTIFIED, SIMPLY CAUSE I HAVEN'T TAKEN THE TIME TO LOOK AT THEM, AND THE COVERS HAVE BEEN REPLACED WITH A FINNED ALUM. COVER WITH THE MARKINGS OF AA ON THEM. YOU CAN SEE THE "CUSTOM AXLE TRUSS" GOING BELOW THE AXLE HOUSING AND TUBES. ALSO NOTE THE SAGINAW P/S PUMP THAT IS SEEMINGLY NEW.



REAR END IS ALSO UNIDENTIFIED, ALTHOUGH I AM HOPING FOR A D44, BUT DOUBT IT. ALSO NOTE THE "CUSTOM AXLE TRUSS", FINNED ALUM. COVER AND WHAT APPEARS TO BE A KICK A$$ GAS TANK SKID, OR A FUEL CELL. I HAVEN'T HAD THE TIME TO LOOK INTO IT YET. I DO KNOW THAT THE FUEL FILLER HOLE IS IN A DIFFERENT SPOT THAN NORM. BUT AM ATTRIBUTING THAT TO MOVING OUT OF NECESSITY DUE TO RUST.

All that was from day one. Last night, I put the q-trac in N, tranny in P, and started towing her to a buddy's house ( have to keep it there as my HOA won't allow her at the house, I get enough crap about my TJ always being covered in mud!), only to find that the LF brake caliper is frozen solid. Unfortunately, I didn't find that out till I got to my buddy's house nearly 20 miles away. Wheel smelled like boiling brakes, and was nearly glowing. Made for a fun time trying to flat tow it home! More to come today, so I will keep everyone updated as the Jeep progresses. My wife and kids are going to Disney tomorrow for a week, so I plan on getting some serious work done while they are gone. We'll see how that turns out though, as the weather man is calling for rain all weekend.

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I NEED A SINGLE 15X8 MICKEY THOMPSON OR SIMILAR ALUMINUM BULLET HOLE WHEEL!!!!

Build Thread: 1979 CJ7 Blue Jeep

Last edited by danheit; 01-10-2009 at 10:43 PM..
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Unread 10-17-2008, 01:09 PM   #2
mpd295
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I know what kind of predicament you're in. I just recently acquired a 79 CJ-7 Golden Eagle with the 304, automatic and Quadratrac. Although the rot on my Jeep's body is not as severe as your's, mine is in a location (Door jam both sides about six inches below windshieldframe) that I haven't found a patch panel. I plan on just making mine a cruiser because you can do so much more with the TJ.
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Unread 10-17-2008, 08:55 PM   #3
danheit
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So "Kinesha the Wonder Jeep" as I call her, got a bit o' cleanin done in the 30 spare minutes I had today. Found a little more rot....er...a little less floor than I was expecting. Several metal street signs made up the flooring under the blue shag carpet. Here's what I was left with......










And here is what came out of the inside of the Jeep.....


So far, I have found very little frame rot. I have found a few metal brake lines that rotted in two, going to the rear, and have found one bad body mount point on the frame thus far. HOWEVER, I haven't had time to really look at much either, and we are expecting rain tomorrow, and I have a trail run Sunday....ah, the busy life of a Jeeper.....
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I NEED A SINGLE 15X8 MICKEY THOMPSON OR SIMILAR ALUMINUM BULLET HOLE WHEEL!!!!

Build Thread: 1979 CJ7 Blue Jeep
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Unread 10-17-2008, 09:07 PM   #4
iownaniroc
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1978 CJ7 
 
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You are insane.
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Unread 10-17-2008, 10:38 PM   #5
Ones&Zeros
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1985 CJ7 
 
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My thought would be to salvage what parts you can. Sell them off to finance a better base to start with. You're going to spend a fortune rebuilding everything that looks to need work.
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Unread 10-17-2008, 10:40 PM   #6
Floridazed
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1980 CJ7 
 
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x2. That is one hell of a job. Time is money, you might look into a jeep in better shape and then start a project.
ahhh... who am I kidding... I've seen worse. I'd follow that build thread!
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Unread 10-17-2008, 10:49 PM   #7
Ones&Zeros
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My thought would be to salvage what parts you can and ether sell them off or use them on another project that is in better shape to start with. As you've already rebuilt several Jeeps before, you no doubt know that you're going to spend a fortune in time and money rebuilding everything that looks to need work.

Whichever you decide to do, best of luck to you.
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Unread 10-18-2008, 12:25 AM   #8
Renegade79
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doesn't look all that bad, little long-haired bondo filler and a buffer...you'll be good to go! haha.

if the frame and drive train are in good condition, maybe throw a YJ tub on it, new fenders, and go from there. (i remember you saying it does run in an earlier post right?)
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'10 Wrangler Sport, soft top, hard doors, 23S package, Teraflex 2.5" spring lift, Spidertrax 1.5" wheel spacers. Sold.
'79 CJ-7 Renegade, 258 I6, T150, D20, D30/AMC20, 2.5in Rancho lift, 31x10.5 AT's, TeamRush upgrade, flush tail lights - Sold :'(
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Unread 10-18-2008, 08:49 AM   #9
danheit
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Yep, she does run, surprisingly well for that matter. Just need to put a new choke on the edelbrock as the last one melted. I think I am leaning on making this just a big mud buggy unless I find a great deal on a YJ or a CJ tub. If I do, then I think I will make the Jeep a bit more civilized looking. May add some tube fenders and do a comp cut to better clear those meats. Don't really want to lift it any more though. Gonna try to keep it slung low if I can. Today is not proving to be a very good day in the means of working on her though. I may have to actually do some work today. UGH!
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I NEED A SINGLE 15X8 MICKEY THOMPSON OR SIMILAR ALUMINUM BULLET HOLE WHEEL!!!!

Build Thread: 1979 CJ7 Blue Jeep
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Unread 10-18-2008, 08:59 AM   #10
danheit
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1979 CJ7 
 
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By the way, anyone know what those metal panels on the side of the Jeep are? they are all rusty in the picture, but actually look like some sort of dealer add on. Anyone ever see anything like this? Or for that matter, the ashtrays mounted into the wheel wells? (I think they are ash trays....could be interior lights though. Can't really tell)
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I NEED A SINGLE 15X8 MICKEY THOMPSON OR SIMILAR ALUMINUM BULLET HOLE WHEEL!!!!

Build Thread: 1979 CJ7 Blue Jeep
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Unread 10-18-2008, 10:36 AM   #11
BESRK
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1980 CJ5 
 
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Could those panels be some sort of homemade speaker mount?
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'80 CJ5 w/AMC360, T176, D44 w/Detroit 4.56, RE 4" YJ lift and 35s..

Ground Pounder Fab


Lower 2

Guardrail

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Crozet

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Unread 10-18-2008, 11:11 AM   #12
ajstewart
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1985 CJ7 
 
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I think the patron saint of lost causes just called and asked if u needed any help!!! Good luck on the build I can't wait to see what you are going to do!
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Unread 10-18-2008, 07:37 PM   #13
Skerr
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Look on the bright side... the tub is already half-way off!

If the drivetrain is good, and the frame is good....
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Unread 10-18-2008, 09:41 PM   #14
scramblered
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My Scrambler was pretty bad and I thought about giving up before
I even started but the more people that told me it was too far gone
to restore the stronger my resolve to do it. Actually at about the
halfway point it is looking good. So my advice is not to listen to
the nay sayers and good luck. Dave
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Unread 10-18-2008, 09:56 PM   #15
imtheant
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You are truly insane. You are going to have to spend so much time just TRYING to make that thing mildy safe enough to run down a trail that you wil likely be burned out with all the time and effort you will exude. Even with a working engine and tranny, you are looking at a MINIMUM of $2000 to get a newer tub, electrical, new fuel and brake lines, brakes, fluids, etc. Your "nice body and paint" will be an additional $3000. Hope you know what you are getting yourself into man. Good luck.
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