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My New Toy


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I've got an old 89 XJ I bought for $600 years ago that got me hooked on Jeeps. Drove the wheels off it for a while and started fixing it up but got sidetracked and its been sitting for years. Anyway with what I wanted to do I'd decided to find a newer HO XJ or Grand to Re-start the project. I stumbled across this 86 Comanche on Craigs List, went by looked at it, it started ran, and very little rust so after a little haggling and $800 later I drove it away. Its an 86 Custom long bed, 4 cyl 4 spd 2wd. 113k on the odo. Body's straight and complete, very little rust (still havent pulled the rubber "carpet") Its supposed to be a "one owner", older gentleman bought it new, and its been sitting for a few years, after he passed away son inherited it and now I have it, lol.

First step of course is to get the 4 cyl running right, got some nasty blowby and a miss. Not sure yet what it is. One cylinder is dead, fire going to it and all new plugs etc so either a valve or rings I guess. I'm not wanting to re-build the 4 cyl as I plan to stuff a 6cyl in it as soon as I find a 97+ XJ donor. Ultimately its getting converted to a 4x4 with the 97 up front end and HO 6cyl with the newer electronics.

That leads me to my first question, I'm somewhat knowledgeable about the jeep 6 cyl's. However I know very little about the 4's. how interchangeable are the cyl heads on the 4's? I need to make a trip to the local Pull-a-Part for an exhaust manifold and may just pick up a head while I'm there. The cracked manifold and mickey mouse after market catalytic converter installation lead me to believe my problem is likely a cracked head or burned valve.

Once its running right I'm pulling the front axle assembly, Ax15 and NP231 out of my 89 XJ, need to find a Dakota Bell housing at the Pull-a-part. I want to keep it driveable as long as possible while I rebuild and redo everything I plan on putting into it.

 

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:cheers: first thing welcome to the club i don't have an answer to your question since i never had to work on the 4 bangers and i am sure that one of the members here will pipe up and let us know :brows: you may want to post this question in the tech section and use the search to get you the answer. this may have been answered but i :dunno: good luck image_209027.gif

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continued....... plan was/is to use these wheels with 235/75 15's until i get the front axle swapped and lift dialed in the way I want. I took advantage of the nice weather to crawl under and all over the truck to get a good idea what I'm working with. Looks like I've got a d35 rear with 3.54 gears, which means I may need to re-plan my 4x4 swap. The XJ donor has a 3.07 front axle if I remember correctly. The MJ's front end needs a lot of work, but I'd had a nasty case of death wobble in the XJ and had completely gone thru the front end so I was planning to just unbolt the control arms shocks etc and swap the entire assembly. Guess I'll be looking for the Explorer axle and a matching high pinion d30 a lot sooner than I'd hoped.

 

After my experience with the XJ, I'm just amazed at how clean and relatively rust free the frame and underside of this truck are. This weekend I'll focus on figuring out why its missing.

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The XJ donor has a 3.07 front axle if I remember correctly..

 

 

yeah but that would a dana 30 so same as your MJ one you could just do a gear swap with an instal kit

unless you wanna go 4.10 with your rear end (wich is morelikely what everyone wants) then you should look for a different front end if you want a complete unit to swap in

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as soon as I get it running right I'm headed to pull a part looking for axles thinking maybe a d44 or a chrysler just gotta decide what gears i want. i wanted more power but i liked the mpgs i got with the 3.07s in my xj. The 4 will be a dog with them but i'm gonna build a strong 6 for it so I'm not sure. Depends what I find.

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I've had the crud and works been crazy busy so I havent had time to play with the beast. But I've been checking her out a little here and there. Tinkered a little this past sunday. Seafoams some awesome stuff, lol. Put some in when I changed oil right after I got her and the more she runs the smoother she gets. Put a new air valve on and she's not blowing oil out of filler cap any more. Still got a lot of lifter noise back by the #3 cylinder so I'm pretty sure thats my problem.

 

Front End is loose as heck, so I started stripping the Parts off my donor XJ. I'd just replaced everything not too long before I Parked it. I'm curious how much lift I'll get out of the Moog heavy duty coils its getting. Iirc they raised the XJ about two inches when I put them on.

 

Pretty sure the slave cylinder is shot. Clutch is virtually non existent, Tranny and underside are coated in oil. My original plan was to put my ax15 and np231 in once I found a Dakota bell housing. But I eventually plan to put a 4.0 in and I don't want to shorten the driveshaft twice. Guess I'll drop the 4spd and see whats wrong.

 

Need to get her running right so I can haul parts, lol.

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