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Dan's Old as Dirt Birthday Sale!GEARSHADE Pocket Tops in stock and available at ROCKRIDGE Yukon Ultimate 35 axle kit for c/clip axles with Yukon Zip

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Unread 09-29-2011, 12:38 AM   #1
casey3057
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Prospective scrambler owner

I have a pair of dana 44's that I have had lingering for a couple of years and finaly found a worthy project. Im fairly new to Jeep in general and even more green when it comes to the older CJ's.
I found a failry clean 81' scrambler that needs some work, motor is bad and it needs a clutch and some electrical gremlins. Knowing nothing about these older Jeeps I was hoping to get some info on things to look out for.
My intended use is moderate to hard rock crawling. I have an 02 WJ that pulls double duty between daily driving and wheelin, and its startin to show its off road miles. I'm just want something that I can drive to the trail and back but doesnt have to be driven everyday.
I plan on a spring over (did one on my FJ60 and loved it)
A pair of ARB's and would like to run 35's. Beyond that, Im open for suggestions.
Its a build that will take some time, but before I pull the trigger on the CJ8, I would like some info.

Minor rust around the wheel wells but other than that, its all there.
asking 2200.00, said to have 144k.

Thanks for the help.

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Unread 09-29-2011, 05:32 AM   #2
CJeep
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Most important is the frame. Check for rust and cracks. Most everything else is not so hard to fix, given time and $.

If. The body is solid, that's a bonus.

Depending on how many electrical problems it has, it may be best to rewire the whole thing with a kit.

2K for a scrambler that is not a total basket case is not a bad deal, but condition is everything for price.

Can you post some pics?

Also, head over to cj8.com for more info specific to scramblers.
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Unread 09-29-2011, 10:47 AM   #3
casey3057
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I will try and get some pics from the seller and post them.
As for the electrical issues it's fairly minor. Headlights And turn signals don't work. Zero under body rust, one fender is all the way through and the others are just surface, some surface rust starting around the door hinges and window hinges but it appears to be all on the surface. I plan on doing some tube fenders so the condition of them isn't a big deal.
My main concern is the motor. It chucked a rod and I'm not sure what other motors will swap in.
I wil check out cj8.com and see what they have to say
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Unread 09-29-2011, 11:09 AM   #4
RobsCrawlin7
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the tub and frame the big ticket items as they are rare. the fenders, hood, windshield arent as big of a deal since you can get them from a 5 or 7. what motor is in it? iirc the cj8's all had either a 258 or 304, if thats the case they are both great motors, and if you want to upgrade any amc v8 (304, 360, 390, 401) will swap right in with little-no mods as they are essentially the same.

oh and on a side note, scramblers are sexy.
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Originally Posted by my_304_cj7 View Post
I used Marvel once before I took my Jeep out on the trails. I didn't get stuck all weekend so I guess it works.
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Unread 09-29-2011, 11:24 AM   #5
casey3057
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It has the 304. Tub is... I would say 90% good. Frame has been undercoated so I'm not sure if it's been blasted before or if it's hiding something bad. Owner says he got it that way when he bought it.
I'm gonna try and snag it for 1800.00. See if the guy is willing to haggle. I would like to find another 304 and then swap in some kind of 5 speed manual and dual t cases. The axles I have sittin for it are already built with 4:88's with the rear having a detroit. I guess the hard part will be sourcing the motor and factory springs for the SOA. The ones on it now are pretty thrashed. Thoughts anyone?
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Unread 09-29-2011, 11:28 AM   #6
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if your going soa, use medium or heavy duty yj stock springs. as for the tranny, i would recommend a t176 or NP435 as both are strong. they are 4 speeds but are still decent on the road. the NP435 is simple, strong, and has a granny low (6.68). I LOVE my NP435/d300 combo. if you run dual tc's behind it with 4.88's you would be able to crawl up a vertical wall with no throttle and a crappy idle lol. personally thats way to low for me. i have 3.54's and just 1 d300 and i can idle over almost anything.

and with the frame/tub in what sounds like good shape, 1800 would be excellent. and if it threw a rod the motor could still be rebuildable.
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'79 CJ7 PICS HERE specs in profile - SOLD
'01 TJ 4.7/NV3550, 4" lift 33's stroked
'98 Chili Pepper Red XJ Sport, 4.0, AX15, 4x4 3" lift, 31" AT's
'79 CJ7 stock, 304

Quote:
Originally Posted by my_304_cj7 View Post
I used Marvel once before I took my Jeep out on the trails. I didn't get stuck all weekend so I guess it works.
SSG David Mejias, SSG Eric Vick, SGT William Bowling, SGT Robert McDowell
1 April 2007
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Unread 09-29-2011, 11:40 AM   #7
casey3057
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRyans33 View Post
if your going soa, use medium or heavy duty yj stock springs. as for the tranny, i would recommend a t176 or NP435 as both are strong. they are 4 speeds but are still decent on the road. the NP435 is simple, strong, and has a granny low (6.68). I LOVE my NP435/d300 combo. if you run dual tc's behind it with 4.88's you would be able to crawl up a vertical wall with no throttle and a crappy idle lol. personally thats way to low for me. i have 3.54's and just 1 d300 and i can idle over almost anything.

and with the frame/tub in what sounds like good shape, 1800 would be excellent. and if it threw a rod the motor could still be rebuildable.
Awesome, just the info I was looking for. Maybe dual T-cases would be excessive with that granny. Maybe just runnin the d300 with a 4:1 would be the way to go. I personally don't want the 4:88's but I built them a few years back for a guy that never paid me, so I kept them. Since they are in there, I will run em. Maybe bump to 37's if they clear.
Thanks for the info on the YJ springs and trans.

Exactly why I joined this group, lots of good people with good info.
I will take my 2200.00 with me in case he's stubborn. It may still be a steal at that price.

Thanks again for the help, I'm still open to options and ideas. This will be my first hardcore build.
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Unread 09-29-2011, 12:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRyans33 View Post
what motor is in it? iirc the cj8's all had either a 258 or 304
Mostly correct. They could also be had with the four cylinder.

Quote:
Originally Posted by casey3057 View Post
Frame has been undercoated so I'm not sure if it's been blasted before or if it's hiding something bad.
If the owner will let you poke at the frame with a screwdriver in random places. Any problems will allow the frame to flex or possibly allow the screwdriver to poke through, revealing what the undercoat might be hiding.

Pay particular attention to the area around the fixed hangers for the rear springs and the area between the rear shackle mounts and the very rear of the frame rails. These are notoriously bad areas for rust.
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