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Unread 08-15-2014, 05:48 PM   #1
Ddmax
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New CJ7 Buyer Advice

I'm going to take a second look at a '84 CJ7 this weekend. Any advice on what I need to be on the lookout for? (potential common problems, etc). I know that could be a long list on 30 year old vehicle....

This CJ is pretty much original from what I can tell except for some cosmetic upgrades. There are no visible signs of rust. The carburetor was rebuilt, well, this morning. It shows 100,000 miles on it. In my opinion it has been well cared for and I've been told garaged for most of its life.

I know this is a loaded question without a lot of information, but any advice would be much appreciated.

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Unread 08-15-2014, 06:15 PM   #2
LumpyGrits
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How good of a mechanic are you?
Your look'n at a 30 year old jeep, that who-the-heck-knows what other owners did to it.
LG
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Unread 08-15-2014, 06:53 PM   #3
Ddmax
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Honestly, I'm not. I had a '94 wrangler a number of years ago that I worked on, but obviously that's a different animal. This CJ is offered by a classic car dealership, so right or wrong I have a certain amount of peace of mind because of that.

Besides that, I have the Haynes CJ manual, so I should be good right?
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Unread 08-15-2014, 06:55 PM   #4
RedCJ83
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http://www.fourwheeler.com/how-to/15...roblems-fixes/
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:07 PM   #5
seabass1858
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I got a factory FSM on pdf form and put it on my iphone that helpped a lot. Since you are in GA you may find a good inland cj to work on. I got my 7 from southern tennesse in what i call good shape for what it is.
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:08 PM   #6
LumpyGrits
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ddmax View Post
Honestly, I'm not. I had a '94 wrangler a number of years ago that I worked on, but obviously that's a different animal. This CJ is offered by a classic car dealership, so right or wrong I have a certain amount of peace of mind because of that.

Besides that, I have the Haynes CJ manual, so I should be good right?
Haynes/Chilton are piss pour because of all the details they leave out.
Your best best is a REAL Factory Service Manual(FSM).
I and most on this site, do all of our own work.
I'm 63, and started turn'n wrenches when I was 14. I have owned my Jeep, bought new, since 1985.
You will go broke PDQ, if you have to pay others to do your work. IF they even know how to fix it.
Remember that, AMC means-All-Most a Car.
JEEP= Just Empty Each Pocket.
Remember-Your deal'n with a salesman and ALL you are, are $$$$ to him-
You have a link to this Jeep your look'n at??
Respectfully,
LG
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:15 PM   #7
Ddmax
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Below is a link to it. What do you think?


http://www.motorcarstudio.com/1281_V...p-CJ7-for-sale
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:21 PM   #8
LumpyGrits
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To dang much!-----------
More than I paid for mine when new.
BTW-That's a aftermarket carb on it.
LG
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:31 PM   #9
Marshal
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LumpyGrits View Post
I and most on this site, do all of our own work.
I'm 63, and started turn'n wrenches when I was 14. I have owned my Jeep, bought new, since 1985.

You will go broke PDQ, if you have to pay others to do your work. IF they even know how to fix it.

Respectfully,
LG
Ain't that the God's honest truth. My cousin in-law has a weber 32/36 on top of a rat-rod 50-something Chevy. The shop he took it to quoted him the "performance tuned carb" fee when he asked about rebuilding it - $300 in labor. They said it was because it was "specially jetted." I feel sorry for the folks that don't know better.

I think it took us a total of one hour to tear apart, dip, and clean the carburetor. Idles like a champ now. Still needs some adjustment. It likes to shut off when returning to idle. I'll check in with them tomorrow and see if they got it tuned right, but that's another topic for another forum lol.

Antique car dealer or no, it's still almost 30 years old and going to have gremlins that you'll have to hunt down and chase off. Possibly in rapid succession one after another, as in my case. I fix one thing, something completely unrelated decides to break. But if you've got the patience for it, and the ability to teach yourself to turn a wrench, you'll be a pretty darn good mechanic in a couple years lol.

Seems to me like the most common problem is whatever the previous owner boogered up. Typically this involves some sort of hacked up lift kit and/or rat's nest of electrical wires to God knows what tucked up under the dash. Typically whatever accessory they ran to is yanked out, but somehow the wires are always left behind along with any problem the amateur electrician made during the install. Right behind that is rust. Everywhere. Keep an eye out for bubbling paint. And then there's the usual run of carburetor and ignition related problems. Hopefully your dealer gets those taken care of properly so it'll be a few years before they start to give you a headache.
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Unread 08-15-2014, 07:50 PM   #10
Mike Romain
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ddmax View Post
Below is a link to it. What do you think?

http://www.motorcarstudio.com/1281_V...p-CJ7-for-sale
That is a poorly put together piece of junk that will give no end of trouble. The main power wiring is wrong, the gas tank vent is plumbed wrong so the carburetor will never set up, the fuel filter is wrong, the heater hoses aren't right, etc... it will be bad news if the rest is put together so poorly.

As a 2 or 3 thousand dollar project vehicle maybe, but for sure it will be a project...
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Unread 08-15-2014, 08:16 PM   #11
Ddmax
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I appreciate the feedback. Can you expound on the gas tank vent concern? And the main power wiring?

I do know that there is an aftermarket heater in the cabin, that works extremely well in these tough ATL winters , does this explain the heater hoses concern?
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Unread 08-15-2014, 08:31 PM   #12
DanJeep21
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Thats a good 20 footer. Wait a minute. . . Who the hell grounds the negative battery post to the firewall? Run don't walk. Keep looking.

If I were in your shoes. I would do exactly what I did with my first CJ. it was an 84 as well. It was a POS when I bought it. I actually paid to much for it at $2,000. Drove it around for a month or two AFTER I checked some things out on it. then jumped into it. In less than a year I did a complete rebuild on it. Everyhing but the engine and axles. I intended to replace them but my son came around quicker than we expected. I learned more in those few months than i did in years of working on cars at a dealership. I also knew how it came apart and went back together. I knew how to fix it if it broke. I learned how to use a paint gun, learned how to wire, run fuel and break lines and how to be patient looking for the right parts(IE Rust free tub, fenders and roll bar for $450). My wife was scared but loved the end result.

As good as the outside looks in those pictures. For that price I'd walk.
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Unread 08-15-2014, 09:12 PM   #13
CrankyD
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Jeeps in particular have a number of weaknesses that will need to be looked after almost immediately. But when you get one thats already been "worked on" look out. keep looking for one under $5000 and stone stock. the more of them you go see the better you will get at seeing the little things. I would look for original paint and floorboards and check the frame at the back bumper real good. frame problems can kill your project dead if you can't fix it yourself. if all the above is good look at the wiring and emissions equipment and look for stock with out being all hacked up. The benefit of all this is when something does break, this place can be very helpful and if it's all stock it should be easy.
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Unread 08-15-2014, 11:45 PM   #14
CJ65
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Find one from a private party if you have the cash, or get a pre approved loan so you know how much you can spend. This guy has overhead and has to turn a profit. He probably negotiated down when he bought this one from a private party. Look around and find a good deal on Auto Trader or something similar, take a weekend to look at a couple farther away than you normally would and make a trip out of it. I like the idea of a bone stock one as much as possible, it really is the best way to go. There will be legacy issues, that is for sure, find and repair issues as you go, always making it better than before. You will need to turn wrenches on it, or pay a lot as well. I think many Jeep CJ owners enjoy repairing, replacing and restoring and constantly improving their Jeeps. It is just a cool thing to do, and a healthy distraction. It is better than kicking the dog and reading the neighbors mail because you are bored.
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Unread 08-16-2014, 12:18 AM   #15
delirious1
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I'm going to agree with the others. Maybe you have your heart set on this one. Maybe not. But for that price, I've seen PLENTY of other jeeps that hold better quality, better parts, and greater features for less. My first automobile was a jeep. The same jeep I have now. I sat down with a service manual at age 16 and rebuilt the engine myself....well, dad helped. Great learning opportunity and 32 years later, I'm still learning. My pockets are deeper now too. Whatever you get, this forum will help tremendously for ironing out all the kinks that come with owning a jeep.

If you are not mechanically inclined, take whatever your considering to a mechanic and have him look it over. Have someone whom owns a jeep also go along with you when you go looking. And I mean a real cj jeep, not the things are out there today.
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