Another WJ (99-04) Grand Cherokee Seat Swap into a TJ - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 44 Old 10-08-2010, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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My stock seats were pretty beat up due to age, weather and constant wear from the previous/ original owner. So I went out to the local Pull-yer-Own and found a totaled out 99 Grand Cherokee. Seats were in pretty good shape, so I picked them up for a $100. Manual adjust, cloth, no forward tilt. Nothing fancy. The one thing that I was really hesitant about on Grand Cherokee seats was the loss of the Forward Tilt since I have two little ones that I constantly get in and out of the back seat from either side. Luckily this was an easy fix as well!
So, for the swap of the seats, it is pretty basic. Remove stock seats from your TJ, remove frames from bottom of your TJ seats (sliders and all), remove stock frames from WJ seats (discard), install frames from TJ onto WJ seats, install WJ seats with TJ frames into TJ Jeep, go get 'em dirty. (Actually you have to notch the plastic covering on the side too, but I'll get to that later). All in all, if you can find a set of these guys lying around in a junkyard somewhere, I'd say go for it. They seem to form around you better than the stock seats do (a little bit) more like a sport seat does, but cush enough to still be enjoyable! I give it !
Now for the added goodies that I found....
If you are considering the WJ seat swap, and are hesitant because you want to keep the forward tilt, YOU CAN! The hinge on the side of the TJ seats are the EXACT SAME as the ones for the WJ seats, but have the release lever on them. All you have to do is remove the hinge from the TJ seats, and swap them over to the WJ seats. Cut a 1" slit for the lever to poke out of in the back of the seat, and WAH-LA! 4-bolts. One 1" cut and That's it.
So, let's get into details, shall we?
So after a good (and MUCH needed) steam cleaning this is what I've got..... (The one on the left was still a little wet)

So here are my new (to me) donor seats from a 1999 WJ Jeep Grand Cherokee. Manual adjust, cloth, non-heated, and CHEAP!
So I removed my driver seat and frames from both WJ and TJ seats. Here are the side-by-side comparisons.

The WJs look to be a little shorter (only 1" shorter with the headrest ALL THE WAY DOWN!) but they really aren't. Optical illusion.

Now the BOTTOMS of the seats look a little taller on the WJs from this angle, but that is not true either. The base (where your butt sits) is actually even with the TJs, but the sides are a little more supportive and not as flat. More of a bowl than a plate shape. A feature that I was looking for in a new seat. (More support, or "wrap" I like to call it)
So I was about half way done with the Driver seat swap when I thought about the forward tilt.... and a light bulb went off...... "I wonder if I could retrofit the unlocking mechanism in the hinge on the TJ seats onto the WJ seat hinge?" When I pulled up the upholstery on the TJ seat and the WJ seat, I stood back and thought.... "Hmm... that looks REEEALLY SIMILAR!!" Now, the pictures below are from the passenger side. I had to make sure the hinges worked and fit correctly prior to taking pictures.... didn't want to steer you guys wrong, so NOTE: THESE PICTURES ARE OF THE PASSENGER SIDE Driver side is done the EXACT SAME WAY.

THEY ARE A DIRECT SWAP!!!
This is how to remove them from the TJ seat (passenger side is shown). Install on the WJ seat is the exact same, in reverse of course.
There are four 13mm bolts holding the hinges in place. There are no other bolts in these hinges, so you can't miss 'em. (In the pictures, the 2 bolts in the bottom half of the hinge have already been removed). Two on the base of the seat,.....


two on the back of the seat.


Another note, on the PASSENGER seat, due to the forward TUMBLE cabling, there is a cable with a connector (similar to a throttle cable) hooked up to the back of the hinge that connects up to the pull tab on the top of the seat. This cable will be removed from the hinge. I did not retrofit the pull tab up top into the WJ seats so the cable was left in the TJ seat. This cable is not present on the Driver side.
Now, once you have your hinges installed, the plastic trim piece you removed to get there has to be trimmed. It is about a 5"x2" cut. I cut mine at an angle towards the front, not really sure if it was needed to be done that way, but cut it small, and make it bigger if need be. I used a hack-saw. Took (LITERALLY) about 20 seconds to cut this thing out. Both sides were cut the same.

Now the plastic covering does rub on the roll bar a VERY little bit when the seats are pushed all the way back. Here are pictures of the lack of clearance on both .... Driver side (pushed about 75% back)

And Passenger (all the way back)

And here's the finished product
Not a PERFECT match, but dang near close enough for government work!

And here is a picture of the WJ seats with the Forward Tilt in action! (Seat was pushed up pretty far when picture was taken. Had to get access to rear of seat to remove plastic trim piece for pictures a little further down in the thread.)

If anyone has any questions on this swap, let me know. If something is unclear, please let me know and i can try to clarify it up best as I can. I hope this helps some of you guys (and gals) out! It's a pretty simple, straight-forward swap, including hinges, and I think just about anyone would be pleased with the results. Thanks for checkin out my first write up! ENJOY!!!


Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #2 of 44 Old 10-08-2010, 11:16 PM
Rigger007
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looks good, nice write-up. Are they comfy? I may look at doing this as well. Long drives aren't the most comfortable right now.
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post #3 of 44 Old 10-08-2010, 11:19 PM
1jack5
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Wow, I bet those are alot nicer on bumpy rides! Do you have pict from a couple feet back (over view) I'll be grabbing some of these whenever I go to the P-A-P.

Also, nice Goat!! love those things
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post #4 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 12:42 AM
NEI10
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Awesome write up, brother! Looks like you used a whole roll of duct tape on your old seats... great job on the "new" seats.

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post #5 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 05:21 AM
bravobravo
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whar was wrong with the factory seats?


















jk, looks good bro.

^ it made more sense in my head

removed for stirring the pot
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post #6 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 09:06 AM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rigger007 View Post
looks good, nice write-up. Are they comfy? I may look at doing this as well. Long drives aren't the most comfortable right now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1jack5 View Post
Wow, I bet those are alot nicer on bumpy rides! Do you have pict from a couple feet back (over view) I'll be grabbing some of these whenever I go to the P-A-P.

Also, nice Goat!! love those things
Ya know, I haven't really had the opportunity for long or bumpy rides yet, but I am confident that they will meet my expectations.

And the Goat!? That's my toy... got it from a guy in Houston who bought it "just to see what it could do." Did all the engine work and everything to it. Where does it sit? 475 RWHP/467RWTQ. Needless to say, it's fun!!! (And MAN are the seats in THAT comfy! I considered putting a set of GTO seats into the TJ, but they are 1.5" too wide on the base.... or I would have!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by NEI10 View Post
Awesome write up, brother! Looks like you used a whole roll of duct tape on your old seats... great job on the "new" seats.
HA! My brother was asking me why I wanted to replace them. I was laughing at him! The previous owner was the "Upholstery Repair Man," though it was a FANTASTIC and very professional job well done!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bravobravo View Post
whar was wrong with the factory seats?

jk, looks good bro.
See above reply.

Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #7 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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Also added in the finished product photo at the end.....
(There was one small tear in the bolster on the driver seat that I sewed up, that's why it looks a little bunched there)

Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #8 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 10:57 AM
Darkmoon
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What a great job on installing those seats in your jeep and on the write up ...now I am going to keep my eyes open when I am out at the local Pull A Part. My driver's side seat has a few feet of duct tape holding it together as well.
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post #9 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 03:05 PM
NEI10
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Hey, Winners97TJ... is that plastic piece you cut just for cosmetic purposes? Would it look really odd without it? Just curious. Thanks!

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post #10 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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Hey, Winners97TJ... is that plastic piece you cut just for cosmetic purposes? Would it look really odd without it? Just curious. Thanks!
The plastic piece covers the bottom half of the hinge. I'll remove it when I get back to the house (in @ an hour) and I'll take a picture of the seat with the cover off. It is mainly cosmetic, but I also think it will help keep little wandering fingers out of potential hazardous and painful places.

Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #11 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 06:24 PM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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Hey, Winners97TJ... is that plastic piece you cut just for cosmetic purposes? Would it look really odd without it? Just curious. Thanks!
Here is the picture as promised....
This is the hinge exposed, the plastic piece that is needed to be trimmed has been completely removed (all of 3-screws and 30 seconds of time)

And here it is re-installed. Just to show what is covered, and what is not.



For the little bit of trimming and time it takes to get it done, I would leave the cover on. Much better cosmetic appeal as well as a VERY little bit of mental ease that the little ones will have a tougher time getting fingers caught anywhere they shouldn't.
I also think that the plastic piece helps hold down the seat cover on that lower edge.

Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #12 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 07:00 PM
viperbluelx
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They look good, but I bet they'll be hard to clean if you wheel it much.

04 Rubicon, 5.5" RE LA with Tri-link, 35" KM2, 4.88's
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post #13 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
Winners97TJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by viperbluelx View Post
They look good, but I bet they'll be hard to clean if you wheel it much.
I hate to admit it, but I don't wheel it much. I hope I can get to start though! And in regards to keeping them clean... I am in search of some neoprene covers for the front WJs and (hopefully a matching) TJ rear. I think that should do the trick. Any additional input from you guys would be helpful.

Gun Control Means Using Both Hands

1997 Jeep TJ - Truly BUILT not BOUGHT! Purchased from original owner stock... obviously THAT didn't last long!

| WJ Seat Swap into a TJ WITH FORWARD TILT!!



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post #14 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 08:43 PM
1jack5
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Jeep Seat Covers - Wet Okole Hawaii

You could buy the front two from the WJ seats and make the TJ rear match. kinda price though...
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post #15 of 44 Old 10-09-2010, 08:54 PM
flatlander757
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Very nice install!

I remember being at work the other day and driving a WJ into the shop for something or other... I remember thinking "man these seats are comfy"



Any clue if the bottom tumble portions of an 03-06 seat is the same "bolt pattern" to bolt to those as well? I know the seats changed from 97-02 vs 03-06... but not sure how much of it changed on the bottom/insides.

SOLDThe lumbering steel-laden pig - 2003 TJ - 40" LTBs - D60/D70HD - 5.86s - Detroit lockers - 110" wheelbase
Build thread here.

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