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Bought A 1990 Comanche. Upgrades?


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I recently bought a 1990 Jeep Comanche, Has a 4.0, 5 speed standard, 2wd. Not too sure on all the particulars of it, as I am new to jeeps. What kind of upgrades do you guys recommend? I'm going for usability, and fuel economy mostly. I have a bigger truck to pull heavy stuff but I'd like to do some towing with this (only a small trailer, max of 1400 lbs). It's not going to be used for off road, mostly just will see highway and gravel roads. I currently have 225/75 R15's on it. Should I be looking at going with a different size? Any help is greatly appreciated!

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For your intended use, I'd go with an upgraded trans cooler, ALL synthetic fluids, heavier duty shocks, new bushings all around, maybe a budget boost in the front along with some 235/75's, and some more aggressive brake pads (I like Performance Friction's carbon-metallics). On the engine side, electric fans, a high flow air filter, and a free flowing magnaflow exhaust would be my picks.

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Other upgrades would be a WJ or late XJ dual diaphragm brake booster, if you're staying 2wd, wj front brakes would be an easy swap, ZJ v8 or xj up country front sway bar 28mm, custom rear sway bar especially if towing, rear disc brake conversion maybe with a ford 8.8 axle to go with it. Better shocks... I have modified JK shocks on mine. They ride real nice. You can search here too for junkyard upgrades. There are a few really good threads floating about here and at naxja.org on that subject.

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Ok, good Ideas, is the rear end generally a weak point on these? I replaced the rear on my '86 dodge ram, went from the stock 8 1/4, to a 9 1/4. I also have a glass pack on the jeep now. Not sure it can get much more free flowing than that, minus mandrel bent pipes, and a header. I have a spectre High flow filter on the way for it, I got a instrument cluster for it that doesn't have just the idiot lights. Recently replaced the rear shocks, cause they were making noises. I also have some bosch 4 hole fuel injectors on the way. Sorry for sounding dumb, but I don't understand the codes you guys are using (ZJ, XJ, JK, etc), like I said, I'm new to jeeps, never really gave them much thought before I got this truck. Always been a Ford and Dodge guy, though I have had almost everything else, lol. I really like driving this truck, I get decent fuel economy, and that engine is really nice and torquey. I love being able to take off on some of the newer "sporty" imports, lol. I do plan to stay with a 2wd, because it's simpler, and in most cases I don't need a 4x4. I like junkyard upgrades, lol. I already have robbed parts from a couple different years of Cherokees, like my cluster, and a front grill, and signal lights. Would I be wise to install a hitch receiver, or is my bumper hitch good enough?

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You'd be surprised what a good downpipe does for these trucks. I recently had a local shop make mr a mandrel bent 2.25" down pipe to connect my header to my 2.5" mufflers (yup, two of em in series) and I noticed a big jump in usable torque. FWIW, I'm running a Magnapack in 2.5" running into a large casr Magnaflow with a dump right before the rear axle on my 2.5L MJ. I dig the rumble, quiet cruise characteristics, and the added power over the stock, rusted, beat to crap exhaust.

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Other upgrades would be a WJ or late XJ dual diaphragm brake booster, if you're staying 2wd, wj front brakes would be an easy swap, ZJ v8 or xj up country front sway bar 28mm, custom rear sway bar especially if towing, rear disc brake conversion maybe with a ford 8.8 axle to go with it. Better shocks... I have modified JK shocks on mine. They ride real nice. You can search here too for junkyard upgrades. There are a few really good threads floating about here and at naxja.org on that subject.

What is WJ? I have a 90 also and any brake improvement would be welcome.If it is an easy swap I'm headin to Pick-A Part.Can you elaborate?

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Other upgrades would be a WJ or late XJ dual diaphragm brake booster, if you're staying 2wd, wj front brakes would be an easy swap, ZJ v8 or xj up country front sway bar 28mm, custom rear sway bar especially if towing, rear disc brake conversion maybe with a ford 8.8 axle to go with it. Better shocks... I have modified JK shocks on mine. They ride real nice. You can search here too for junkyard upgrades. There are a few really good threads floating about here and at naxja.org on that subject.

What is WJ? I have a 90 also and any brake improvement would be welcome.If it is an easy swap I'm headin to Pick-A Part.Can you elaborate?

 

 

1999-2004 Grand Cherokee. The first round one. A Cherokee from 1995 or 1996 will have a similar brake setup that's almost a direct swap to your '90. There's a number of good threads on it in the "DIY project writeups" section.

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Other upgrades would be a WJ or late XJ dual diaphragm brake booster, if you're staying 2wd, wj front brakes would be an easy swap, ZJ v8 or xj up country front sway bar 28mm, custom rear sway bar especially if towing, rear disc brake conversion maybe with a ford 8.8 axle to go with it. Better shocks... I have modified JK shocks on mine. They ride real nice. You can search here too for junkyard upgrades. There are a few really good threads floating about here and at naxja.org on that subject.

What is WJ? I have a 90 also and any brake improvement would be welcome.If it is an easy swap I'm headin to Pick-A Part.Can you elaborate?

 

 

1999-2004 Grand Cherokee. The first round one. A Cherokee from 1995 or 1996 will have a similar brake setup that's almost a direct swap to your '90. There's a number of good threads on it in the "DIY project writeups" section.

 

Thanks

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Well, right off the bat I'd do a full tune-up. Immediately after I would do the seafoam-in-TB-and-brake-booster trick. Just did that to my buddy's chevy, huge difference! You already said you were getting better injectors. You can do a better exhaust, but you won't get its full gains without a better intake, and you won't get full gains out of either without porting your head. Also, Cruiser's tips are ALL worth doing, especially the CPS overbore and advance mod. The overbore should make it more reliable and the advance should net you free power. Electric fan as well, as has been mentioned. Full synthetics all around will lower all rolling resistances at all points that use oil. Good tires and an alignment will make sure you're not bleeding mpg. The skinnier the tire and the harder the rubber of the tire is should both help mpg. However, the harder the rubber, the less traction you'll have...which is kinda the point but its up to you to decide which side of the line you prefer; more traction or better mpg. All the other stuff they're mentioning with the axles and brake boosters, I've never done so can't comment on that. I've mainly focused on engine myself. Edit: Junkyard upgrades would include the 'horseshoe' intake out of a newer XJ.

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Well i got my filter, and the injectors today. I also recently picked up a set of E3 spark plugs. I was also able to pick up a 1990 XJ parts car, for $300. it has all the shrouding mine is missing for the fan, plus the electric A/C fan. Is there anything extra that I should be looking at getting off this car before I flip it? It's running, and would make a good farm runabout, and I'm thinking I can probably sell it for as much or more than I paid for it. Oh, and it has the HO 4 litre, or so it says. I'm hoping to swap the buckets with my bench seat as well.

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Doors, head light bezels, chrome bumper, hood, fenders, starter, distributor, dash, D30, TC linkage, front DS, console, steering column/wheel/shaft....pump, hoses, radiator, E-fan, wiring harness, chrome door handles, chrome mirrors..........etc......etc.................

 

 

You will NEVER find another for $300 running........that's how life works, certainly not when you need one.

 

You stated nothing about condition, nor have you posted any pics.

 

If the XJ is solid........park it out back and forget about it till you need it.

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I will post some pics later. it's rough, was in a rollover, but doesn't have really any chrome on it. I got chrome headlight bezels off of ebay, though I'm thinking of staying with the black ones, and painting them the same color as the body.

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