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Unread 03-17-2015, 10:31 AM   #1
Jeepn-n-tx
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In the spirit of Melville's "Moby Dick" ....

Call me Scott. Some years ago - never mind how long precisely - having little or no money in my purse, & nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would cruise about a little & see what Jeep parts Craigslist had to offer. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen & regulating the circulation. Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, & bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; & especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, & methodically knocking people's hats off - then, I account it high time to get to shop & "Jeep" as soon as I can. This is my substitute for pistol & ball. With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the shop to work & wrench. There is nothing surprising in this. If they but knew it, almost all men in their degree, some time or other, cherish very nearly the same feelings towards the Jeep with me.


Because having one Jeep obviously jut wouldn't do ... I found a project I just, again obviously, couldn't live without. Just looking through CL for no particular reason, I found my "Black Whale". Backstory ... about a year ago, spotted a black CJ-7 Laredo, mostly original besides a 4" SOA lift and 33" tires. I had seen this particular CJ always parked & never seemed like it moved, so I was curious. I finally saw someone at the house, so I went to talk to them. Turns out they were a little interested to sell. In the end, they were just asking way too much for it. I was sore as I knew I shot them a more than fair offer. After awhile I didn't think about it much, but it sparked an interest I didn't know I had in the black Laredo. It as dubbed "the Black Whale" ...

Fast forward to about 2 weeks ago, again searching through CL for no reason, I happen upon another "Black Whale". Dang near 99% OEM ... & looked to be in pretty decent shape for the age. I went to take a look, with cash in hand & trailer in tow. Fully expecting to pick it up, I was disappointed when I arrived. The Jeep was not as listed & had numerous issues ... rust in the major body seams was the major one ... Again, I was pretty sore about it after I left. Another "black whale" got away from me.

Then, this past week, same story .... but I landed her this time! I ended up finding an '85 CJ-7 Laredo (black), i6, t176, d300, & again, ~ 95% all original. The funny thing was the PO with the intent of doing a frame off had already torn the Jeep down to the frame ... where it's sat for the better part of 7-8 years. Do to a move he was ready to move it cheap. I had no reason to think any of the major components were bad so I picked it up.

This is when I brought her home.

image-2471282386.jpg image-3099010565.jpg image-2029271187.jpg
image-1128672441.jpg

Since unpacking things, I've found a decent sized hole rusted out in the frame as well as that the floor pans in the tub had been replaced. Whoever did the floor pan smoothed things out with plenty of Bando. So, preparing for the worst, I looked, found, and bought another CJ7 frame & tub (with fenders, grill, hood, & WS frame, plus misc extra parts. All of it only costing me an extra $500 or so. My white "East TX Project" is running great, so I feel, unlike CPT Ahab, this whale wont take me down with her. I've got my driver & now I've got my true project. ..... Something tells me a new shop is shortly in order!

(... I'll try to post picks up as soon as I can. I'm having issues posting using the JF app...)

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Unread 03-17-2015, 10:42 AM   #2
Matt1981CJ7
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Nice! I always liked the looks of the black Laredo, too.

I sure hope the PO kept all the small parts bagged and labeled.

Matt
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Unread 03-17-2015, 10:45 AM   #3
Jeepn-n-tx
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Actually, Matt .... & one of the reasons I didn't have a reason to doubt him .... the old PO is a fellow Army Vet. He was meticulous about bagging & tagging everything! I called the day I unpacked stud just to thank him for it! HAHAHA!!!
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Unread 03-17-2015, 10:47 AM   #4
Matt1981CJ7
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Very cool. I can't wait to see it all put back together in its original glory.

If you don't mind my asking, what did you pay for this project?

Matt
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Unread 03-17-2015, 10:58 AM   #5
Jeepn-n-tx
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I usually don't like talking specific prices on things, but I picked her up as she was for $2k. The PO even helped us load it!
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Unread 03-17-2015, 11:11 AM   #6
Matt1981CJ7
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Thanks. I didn't mean to be snoopy, just curious.

I think you, and the PO, got a fair deal.

Matt
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Unread 03-17-2015, 11:19 AM   #7
Jeepn-n-tx
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No worries, Matt. Really. Its most just bc Jeep prices fluctuate so wildly it sparks the whole "you over paid for it", "you stole it" thing ....


I agree on the fair deal piece. I'm not a purist by any means, but I could easily make my money back just selling off certain parts. It even has the original leather wrapped grab bar & steering wheel. Again, I'm not a purist, but I can wait to fix this one up to dang near stock condition.


Along with the spare frame & body, I also forgot to mention I also picked up a TF999. Tentatively, I plan to swap out the T176 for the TF999, rebuild the 176 & swap it in place of the SR4 I have in my white CJ. However, this will be a while down the road. Plans could change.... Its supposed to be raining here for the next few days, so I'll have to chance to organize my stuff in the garage & attic. I'm hoping to get started on working the new frame very, very soon.
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Unread 03-17-2015, 11:21 AM   #8
AZ_Chip
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Cool! Another thread to crawl!
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Unread 03-17-2015, 11:49 AM   #9
Jeepn-n-tx
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HAHAHA .... all this ... & I STILL haven't finished working on the doors for my 81. HAHAHA!
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Unread 03-17-2015, 12:52 PM   #10
Ken4444
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Congrats on your finds. There are a lot of CJs tucked away in the East Texas area.
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Unread 03-17-2015, 05:14 PM   #11
AZ_Chip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeepn-n-tx View Post
HAHAHA .... all this ... & I STILL haven't finished working on the doors for my 81. HAHAHA!
Yeah. You just doubled your workload. No biggie.
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Unread 03-17-2015, 06:42 PM   #12
Jeepn-n-tx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken4444
Congrats on your finds. There are a lot of CJs tucked away in the East Texas area.
Thanks Ken, but I actually found this near your neck of the woods. Conroe area.

AZ .... You're absolutely correct, however I'm in no rush here. And I think it will help keep the Jeep-itch away having one to drive. Trying to get my 81 drivable I took a few short cuts I ended up going back & fixing later. I'm gonna take my time with this one.

Now to my 1st question. The frame I'm replacing is an '85, being replaced with an '79. I know the front shock towers are different along with maybe a couple of other things. Question is, should I cut off the stubby shock mounts & put the towers on or leave the frame as is. This is definitely not going to be a crawler so I'm not overly concerned with shock travel. Thoughts...?
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Unread 03-18-2015, 06:31 AM   #13
gmakra
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Alwrighty Scott.
I has some questions fer you young man?
1. Have you ever had anyone move or remove your bolt holes over nite? As an example you have a manifold that you swear up and down bolted up before but now it dosent.
2. Do you talk funny ohhhh never mind I see you are below the Mason Dixon Line so the answer is affirmative y'all talk funny.
3. Is the first tool you reach for a hammer?
4. Do you consider Matt1981CJ AKA Matty to be a misguided architect with two left hands? Yes___or True____

After you answer the questions I confer with my associates and give you the results of your quiz.
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Unread 03-18-2015, 10:05 AM   #14
Jeepn-n-tx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmakra
Alwrighty Scott. I has some questions fer you young man? 1. Have you ever had anyone move or remove your bolt holes over nite? As an example you have a manifold that you swear up and down bolted up before but now it dosent. 2. Do you talk funny ohhhh never mind I see you are below the Mason Dixon Line so the answer is affirmative y'all talk funny. 3. Is the first tool you reach for a hammer? 4. Do you consider Matt1981CJ AKA Matty to be a misguided architect with two left hands? Yes___or True____ After you answer the questions I confer with my associates and give you the results of your quiz.
Huh... I don't know you so I'm not real sure if you're joking or being an a-hole for some reason, but in good humor I'll answer your "Cosmo" quiz questions.

1) I don't let anyone play with my bolt holes at night, so no.

2) Maybe I talk funny to you, but since yore from Chi-CA-go, you talk funny too, eh. (Since you generalized about me being south of the Mason Dixon Line, I'll generalize about you being close-enough to Canada ... Eh.)

3) Maybe ... Depends on what I'm working on. A Jeep? Then no. ... An encounter w/ a village idiot? Then yes.

4) Hmm, I don't know if Matt is an architect or not let alone if he has two left hands, so I can't readily answer "yes" bc I don't really have an opinion on the matter. And I surely can't answer "true" bc again, I don't know the facts. It would be irresponsible of me to make an assumptive guess about someone I don't know ... However, I can say he's pretty helpful with Jeep questions.


... Did I pass?
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Unread 03-18-2015, 10:34 AM   #15
Dadamsnv
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Don't worry Georgie, he'll get to know your humor soon enough.
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