Taming the Beast
This thread picks up where the Laverne vs Shirley thread ended. This will recount -- and solicit LOTS of advice on -- the work I have ahead of me.
This is a 78 cj7 that I found outside of Pittsburgh. It was a project jeep for a guy who had done tons of work on it as a frame off restoration project while living in NC. (It's an NC jeep -- never seen snow or salt.). He put a bunch of time an $$ into it, and then found himself with a baby on the way, etc. He hadn't had any action after a month of trying to sell it, so we were able to cut a good deal. Here's a summary...
- 154k miles. PO says it may actually be 54k, but I'm working with the assumption it's 154. Title is mileage exempt.
- original tub, hood and grill. Fenders have been replaced with new metal. The body isn't perfect -- there are some minor dents you can see up close and his home paint job leaves a lot a be desired, but from 10 ft away it looks pretty great. The inside of the tub is RhinoLined.
- frame is very clean, both the body and the frame were sprayed with POR15 while it was disassembled
- 3 speed, 304 V8 both original and in good shape as far as I can tell (the tranny was recently rebuilt)
- all new electrical system, new stainless steel brake lines and fuel line, new aluminum radiator
- 3 inch suspension lift and another 1 inch lift on the frame
- brand new Goodyear 33" Wrangler Duratrac tires
- Edelbrock carb and intake manifolds, HEI distributor less ignition
- power break conversion
- seats are in good condition, as is the soft top and doors.
- it also came with a brand new bikini top ( ... also a hard top and doors, but those will be major projects themselves) and a sporty sound system for the roll bar
Not a bad place to start. So why is is thread called Taming the Beast? Because even though it looks pretty, it's a bit of a loud and nasty mess to drive right now.
Not a bad place to Here are some of the things on the punch list:
- the exhaust system is a mess. It sounds like a group of Hells Angels pounding into town on big ballsy model T's. Probably needs to get re worked all the way back to the headers.
- the steering is also a mess. Initial inspection by some buds who know a lot about cars didn't indicate the problem, but it's sloppy as hell. (I had it trailered to Cleveland from Pittsb because it's really not safe right now.)
- it has a YJ roll bar that's only partially installed
- there are some open holes in the dash -- like where the sound system, the glove box and the clock should be -- and the other gauges aren't installed securely
- it works really hard to crank and turn over, very hard to re-start when it's warm
- and there are about 20 smaller items, like installing the back seat.
Even thou it looks pretty sharp, it's a loud and nasty drive right now! Some stuff I will likely job out -- Iike a new exhaust system -- but I'm going to try to do a lot by myself (with your help).
Today's learning: it's a b-buster getting wrenches up in there to adjust the clutch pedal!
Tomorrow I will start posting project pix and questions. Thanks in advance for your guidance.
Marty. ( ... In case you're wondering, I paid $7500 for it.)