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When my kid's 88 was tired, I ordered a longblock 4.2 from... Autozone!
Go ahead and laugh but 4 years later it still runs perfect. And he was a 16 year old with a heavy foot. Autozone does not overhaul them, they sell them. And better yet, no shipping charge. Pick up and return to the store. They come in a nice heavy plastic clamshell.
It has good oil pressure. They used name brand parts. Autozone has a good warranty.
They load and unload. I had it in a few days from ordering. 5 year 50,000 mile warranty.
once broken in for grins I did a compression test. Everything was within spec. At the same time I got a new water pump and radiator and really flushed the heater core. I think I remember upgrading to a serpentine belt???
I had the trans (auto) rebuilt at the same time. I figured it should be good for 20 years.
Holley has a made for Jeep 258 easy install Sniper EFI kit too. That would be a great time to switch to FI. We put a Howell FI on his Jeep too. It's made from a Chevy 4.3. One of the best things you can do.. You'll love it.
 

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That's a drag (4 to 6 weeks) When we ordered the reman, I remember it taking from about Wednesday to the next Tuesday. I guess the supply chain is so screwed up.
Do a compression test. A little shot of starting fluid might be interesting. Put #1 TDC and make sure it's the compression stroke. Then check the timing marks.

Our local machine shops are awful so here that is out of the question. They are little mom & pop places than can not (or will not) absorb warranty claims. The money for claims literally comes out of their pocket. They'd rather lose a customer. They ruined a couple cylinders I dropped off (Yamaha Banshee) and screwed up a friends 454

It would be nice if you could somehow get by until you can get a reman. It's really peace of mind to know you've got essentially a new engine, broken in and maintained properly.
Our YJ's are permanent members of the family so I don't mind spending a bit extra.
 

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You are on the correct path. The firing order is 1-5-3-6-2-4 on the 4.2. So at TDC with your timing mark lined up to zero your rotor should point to #1 or to #6. There are two crank revolutions to one cam and distributor revolution so it will be at #1 on one revolution and #6 on the next revolution or vice versa.

The causes of what you have are a bad timing chain or gears which can include broken keyways or dowels that locate them to the component. The other is an apple cored cam and distributor gear or a broken distributor roll pin.

If it ran good and was quiet, you probably have an engine that is very repairable.
Distributor gear roll pin. Yeah, I should have thought of that considering it happened to my Mustang. Drove me nuts for the day until I found it. Ford used a tiny roll pin. I drilled it out and used a much thicker Chevy roll pin. That tiny roll pin had to drive the distributor and the oil pump. I'm lucky I didn't loose the gear in the motor it was so loose.
 
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