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Unread 08-08-2012, 02:35 PM   #1
spward
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About to embark on a 84 CJ7 repair...Tips

My father is giving my daughter his old ranch vehicle. It’s a 85 CJ7 with about 37K miles. The engine is original, but I think the rear-end was rebuilt a few years ago. I would venture half of those were from being towed between Central and West Texas. I drove this in high school, so it took some extra abuse. It still runs, with a rough idle and needs to have a few hoses replaced along with both front seats and rear seatbelts. There are a few rust spots on the windshield frame, but from what I can tell, the rest is really clean. Things I know I need to replace, turn signal switch, radio, front seats, rear seatbelts, ignition (no key and will start without one), top and doors and finally a new paint job.
So while the list is short compared to what I have seen others do, would it be best to have the entire thing painted before I start fixing things or should that be last?

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Unread 08-08-2012, 02:56 PM   #2
wm69
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Paint last, we need pics, and welcome to the forum.

You'd probably get more responses tackling one job at a time and posting specific threads. You can pretty much find out how to do ANYTHING on a Jeep with the internet.
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Unread 08-08-2012, 07:45 PM   #3
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Welcome home!!!

Your daughter isn't going to get to drive it is she??? She'll get your 2010 Escalade and you'll get the old beater and be happy as can be.

Paint last.

I would check and flush/change fall fluids as they come up as you work through brakes, axles, steering, suspension, tcase, tranny, engine, wiring, body, interior, paint. Unless something else needs love in order to test something else or you're waiting on parts. You will be amazed what you find that wants some attention in order to be safe.

I'm working from the ground up, backwards through the drive train and so far have been happy with my choice to do it that way. Not a full rebuild. Just a light renovation to get her back from the dead and try to stop the cancer from spreading.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 10:57 AM   #4
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OK, so I pulled the jeep home yesterday. I was thinking it was an 84, but it is actually an 85. According to the paperwork I found in the glovebox (after I took it apart), it was purchased in October of 84. I think my dad actually bought it from the PO in early summer of 85. Anyhow, here are some pics. I really wanted to start tearing things down last night, but I need to make some room in the garage first and my wife said that i better not encroach on the space occupied by her Lexus. I did manage to pull out the radio (non-original and from Montgomery Wards) and took apart the glovebox as the key was lost and the lock is broken. There is some rust as you can see in the pictures, but from what I can tell, no holes. Let me know what y'all think.
There is 28 years of gunk on the valve cover, not sure if I have an actual leak. The oil is very clean. Haven't pulled any plug yet. Trying to scrape some off and use purple power to wipe the rest clean, but I need to remove parts to get in there. The master cylinder is rusted and it might be easier to replace, but I will see what I can do to rehab it. I am going to pull the steering out and clean lub and paint it. Since there is no power steering, it should be a simple project (famous last words) My favorite is the air duct to the carb, re-purposed with duct tape.
img-20120902-00045.jpg   img-20120902-00016.jpg   img-20120902-00028.jpg   img-20120902-00033.jpg   img-20120902-00035.jpg  

img-20120902-00034.jpg   img-20120902-00018.jpg  
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Unread 09-04-2012, 11:08 AM   #5
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Awesome, it don't need paint, it's a CJ not a show pony. You will be amazed at what a good washand maybe even a wax will do. There are also articles about using bon-ami and/or comet to bring old paint back. I would say service everything fluid wise, inspect the brakes, fix the minmum and drive it (you not her) a little bit to assess what you really have. I'm seeing a pretty good unmolested CJ from my angle. Make sure to check the tires for cracking before you get it to any speed with people in it. Start lookign for a family bar, your daughter will have plenty of friends wanting to ride, get the rear shoulder belts with them so you take care of your rear belt problem at the same time.


Welcome to the forum, lot of good info on here. These guys can talk you throw anything.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 11:16 AM   #6
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Take it down to the car wash and spray it down as clean as possible in the engine compartment and underneath to make it less of a mess to work on. Get a black sharpie and a silver sharpie at the office supply to mark the orientation of pieces as you take them apart - especially the steering column (don't wash the marks off if you clean them some more). BTW Bon Ami will not leave scratches while Comet will.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 11:23 AM   #7
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If you wash the engine becareful not to get the distributor wet and take the tools and rags necessary to dry it out if you do. WD-40 is also good to dry out a distributor cap.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 11:54 AM   #8
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The exterior was a Macco special a few years back and is ok. I do have some chips I need to get sanded and primed. The interior is where I want to get it cleaned up. I was washing out the frame this weekend and cleaned a lot of dirt and mud. I will more than likely pull it over to the car wash one evening and try to degrease. I need to pull out the heater and fix all the cables as well as dig into the electrical. I have headlights, but no dash lights. The unit can be started without the key and the turn signal lever is broken. I do have a fair amount of rust on the windshield on the passenger side and the seats are mis-matched. So while my list is small, there are several things I need to complete. The good part is that my daughter cannot get her learner permit until April so I have 1.5 years until she will be a regular driver. The tires are old, but managed the 100+ temps yesterday (even at highway speeds). However, they are showing age and the rims are rusted. Not sure if I can get them sanded and powdered coated. Fluids will be drained and I already know the rear-end is not the best. Way back in 87, I managed to break the differential loose from the tubes and we got a machine shop to pull it back down and weld the tubes so it will stay in place. However, with years of off-road use, I just don't know the condition of it. My final question is about the transfer case. Once I get into 4H, it is almost impossible to get back into 2H, N or 4L. The only luck I have had is to reverse a bit and then it will let me slide it out. Getting into the other gears are fine. 4H has always been a problem. Not sure if it is normal, but I do know that the lever does hit the center console (which will be replaced) so that might be a concern that I am not fully engaged. Does anyone have suggestions on what I can use to recondition the rubber hoses and tubes, or should I buy new? Finally, I will replace the hangers and shackles as the ones I have are tired looking.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 12:31 PM   #9
wellmax
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great looking old jeep,
compared to my 1984 your jeep looks showroom new.

one thing to note: when you change your fuel filter, be sure to replace it with a like fuel filter and position it the same as the one you have now.

for some reason that extra outlet pipe should be on the top, if not, the jeep will be hard to start after it sits for awhile.

be very careful washing off the motor, me i would not do it.

most tow truck guys say they make big money towing vehicles from the carwash after the dude trys to wash the warm motor and blows a few sensors.

odd such a nice jeep did not come with power steering and brakes, those two options sure make an old jeep much easier to drive. bet you can find those items and add them.

good luck,
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Unread 09-04-2012, 01:43 PM   #10
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I think the original owners bought it as a beach cruiser for Galveston. We installed a towbar in 86 and thats how i got it home. If i were to wash it, I would just pull it over and back. The last state inspection was 2006 and plates were about the same time. I was thinking about spraying it last night on the way home, but my luck would knock off the "chunk" that was plugging a leak and cause more issues on the freeway. I more than likely will take it over to the local place and see how much I can try to deflect off the sides and let it drip down. Since it won't be running, I will see about putting bags on things and sealing up as much electical as possible. I want to get the big stuff off and will finish the remainder by hand. It has spent most of it time on one of my Dad's two ranches, hence the low (but hard) miles. As a side note, I found a reciept for a battery I bought at k-Mart in Aug-89. Not sure if I will add power steering or brakes. Need to see how much money the wife will let me spend.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 03:09 PM   #11
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Spraying a little WD40 on the hoses will make them look better (used car lot trick), but now is really a good time to replace all the hoses and belts. You wouldn't want your daughter stranded because a belt or hose let go.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 03:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spward View Post
... I really wanted to start tearing things down last night, but I need to make some room in the garage first and my wife said that i better not encroach on the space occupied by her Lexus.
That's funny! My garage is unusable due to the Jeep. There are parts in the garage, basement, spare bedroom, shed.....

And her car is now in the driveway, along with mine.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 04:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VACJ7 View Post
That's funny! My garage is unusable due to the Jeep. There are parts in the garage, basement, spare bedroom, shed.....

And her car is now in the driveway, along with mine.
We have a 3 car garage, but I was told I could only use part of it. The other 3rd is full of softball gear that my daughters use. Lots of crap that needs to go to goodwill.
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Unread 09-04-2012, 10:33 PM   #14
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So I started taking things apart tonight. Found a few unique electrical issues where wires were plugged into the front of the fuse box using the fuse as a means to keep it there. Got rid of that and once I pulled the windshield down, discovered 25 years of hunting crap, corn, mud dauber nests and everyone's favorite, rust on the windshield frame. What are my options on the rust and should I just purchase a replacement windshield from Q-Tec for $140?
img-20120904-00049.jpg   img-20120904-00053.jpg   img-20120904-00054.jpg   img-20120904-00055.jpg   img-20120904-00056.jpg  

img-20120904-00057.jpg  
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Unread 09-05-2012, 04:42 AM   #15
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the rust along the trailing edge of the screen is fairly common. However it is often combind with hidden rust on the cowl and screen behind the hinges. I suggest you pull the lot and have a look.

The screen, once you sand it back, may be salvageable and it is not the worst ever seen. However if you roll the vehicle will it stay in one piece? You will struggle to rebuild the edge to a state where you wil not see it, when the vehicle is painted it will be readily apparent.

I had the frame from Q tec and it was fine, other have had probems with Crown brand and others in terms of fit. If I had your screen I would be tossing a coin but probably replace for safety.
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