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Well, this is my intro post and the start of my build thread. My name is Brent and I'm a jeepaholic. I'm not new to jeeps as this is my 3rd that I've owned and the 4th in the family. First jeep was owned by my father back in the early 2000's. It was a 1992 XJ 2wd 4door. It had around 250,000 miles when the speedo quit, therefor the odometer stopped working and we had no idea how many miles it actually had after that. We kept it for a while then regretfully sold it. Second jeep was a 1999 XJ 4wd 4door. I still have this one, it's my crawler/trail beater/trailer queen. I'll post more about it later. Third was a 2005 WK 5.7hemi. I bought it to tow my XJ with and for a DD. It was a fantastic vehicle to the motor gave up at 136,000... Sold. Now we have the MJ. I purchased this beast on Sep 6th 2015 from a guy about an hour away from me. Plans are to treat it with respect and restore and clean the truck to use as a DD. I have no plans to lift and offroad it due to I have the XJ for that and I need a solid DD. 





4.0 183,000miles





Most everything on the truck is factory although I have noticed somethings have been replaced. I'm not sure what # owner I am but I think either 3rd or 4th. The truck had some issues when purchased of course, first thing I noticed was surging at idle until it was drove and warmed up, second was an oil leak from the pan (according to the PO) that dripped on the exhaust, then there were the obvious things, paint is crap, couple dents and holes in the body, underside was covered in grime from the oil leak, headliner had been taken out and carpet was long gone... 


 On the plus side, It has a new valve cover gasket, battery, cables and starter. New radiator for a newer model xj (according to PO) and an updated cooling system (according to PO). Floor pans have had the rust cut out and has been patched by the PO and rolled with what looks to be cheap bedliner. Bluetooth radio with some crap speakers behind the seat and a decent set of rubbers. Black interior with a freshly reupholstered bench seat in naugahyde. 


So far I have eliminated the c101 connector, freshened up the grounds (i have cable and stuff to replace some of them and do the standard ground add-on's), replaced the oil pan gasket (which made the leak alot worse), went through all the plugs under the hood and truck and cleaned and greased, gave it a well needed bath, changed oil and filter, inspected the entire thing from top to bottom, greased all the zerk fittings, and cleaned the interior. I'm sure I'm forgetting stuff but if you are still reading at this point, you either have no life or are a true champion. 


I will be posting pictures when I have the chance although I have come to find out that posting pictures to this site is a pain to say the least. Some will be with my phone and some with my camera. but for now you only get a couple outside pictures. I'll post more tomorrow. 











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Well, been working on my tail lights today. Purchased a headlight restor kit to sand/polish a second set of tail lights but it didn't work as I had hoped. Instead, I cleaned, buffed then just sprayed clear coat and they actually turned out decent. Also reconnected the ground behind the light with a new eye crimp and heat shrink cause the PO's other crimp was crap. The wire was moving around in the crimp so I know it couldn't have been a good connection. Now, I'm working on getting my reverse lights to work... 


I'll post some pictures in a bit. 

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cleaned up vs original. (laugh all you want but those shoes are ridiculously comfy...)


Well, I figured out why my reverse lights don't work. There is no plug or wires connected to the trans. Like, there is literally nothing there besides the switch itself. I looked for the wires but haven't found them. Now, I'll have to create my own harness for the lights. Joy. While I was underneath the MJ, I also noticed there are no bolts holding the trans to the mount... it's just sitting there... I suspected the PO lied to me when he said it was all original, now the truth is showing itself... I hate craigslist... 

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I'm working on uploading pictures right now but I went out today and decided to work on the radio the PO installed. It's a nice JVC with bluetooth and a mic and all that jaz. Well, when I was leaving work the other day, the radio cut on as usual but a message ran across the screen that said "faulty wiring, check wiring then restart unit." So once I got home, I decided to do just that. Turns out, that is one smart radio... The PO's wiring job, if you can call it that, was high school auto class at best... The guy completely cut the plug off the stock wiring and shoved all of it into the dash... Then decides to run new wires down to the fuse panel... The guy wrapped the wires around fuses for the switched 12 and the constant 12 and shoved them back into their respective holes... One fuse was melted to the panel and one was corroded horribly... So, being the guy I am, I ripped all of that crap out... 


I spent the majority of today rewiring everything... I utilize as much factory wiring as possible which wasn't as much as I had hoped considering the wire that was suppose to have a constant 12 only had 8.5v... Anyways, after lots of patience and swearing, everything is like it should be in loom and heat shrink... Now my radio works as It should... except in my haste to finish, I failed to reconnect the antenna... damnit all.

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Under dash stuff...



All this came off the radio... Dear Jesus...



Oh and I have like 11 harness plugs in and under my dash that aren't plugged into anything, they're just chillin... I have no idea if that's normal or not...

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I saw a tag on one that said cargo light and one that said wiper... I don't think I'll add a wiper but a cargo light is highly possible. Although I'll probably add under bed rail lights instead... Some of the LED variety. 

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Thanks Outlaw!


So, I was right. Last night I put the MJ on the lift and found that the trans was indeed just sitting on the crossmember. Thanks again PO. Reason? all the bolt holes in the trans were stripped out... So I cleaned everything up and laid down a glob of JB Weld and stuck everything back up there.. I'm only joking. I actually ran a slightly smaller grade 8 bolt through the holes and managed to fit a nut on them. I did get one bolt slightly to large to thread in to one of the holes nice and tight. Other than that, I got a tool box put in. 


I want to find a auto to drop in the MJ...

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the trans was indeed just sitting on the crossmember




If you want to know what all those plugs do, post pics of them up on here and we'll let you know what they do. Most of them are easily addable options like clocks, lights, headlight delay, intermittent wipers, etc. Other than the typical PO crap looks like a fairly solid truck. Good luck!

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Thanks Minuit. I'll post pictures next time the dash is off. Forgot to hook up my radio antenna so i'll be needing to do that soon. 


Lately, I've continued cleaning and sealing this beast up. Pulled the cab vents off and cleaned and sealed the actual vents themselves with gorilla tape then sealed the plastic vent covers up with a 3/8" wide rubber foam strip like what seemed to be on since the factory. I thought maybe that would seal the water leak up but I was wrong. The leak appears to be coming from the rear window the PO replaced. What a damn hack job. I really want to slap that guy. As soon as I get the water leak fixed, how I don't know yet, I'll be ordering carpet to stick back in this thing. At that point, I'll be happy and ready for paint or a red tinted bedliner. not sure yet which way I want to go. 


Oh and I ordered and installed the putco headlight harness and my autopal housings and H4's came in yesterday so I'll be putting them in today. I'll post pictures of everything later. It's a small job loading pictures onto this site...

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Putco Harnes ^^^^^



Putco Harness FAIL^^^^ damn crappy bolts



O2 tubing from work (EMS) for vacuum lines... cheap and plentiful



New vent seal... cost $4 from lowes for like 10'



New tool box lift struts my brother gave me. Things are so strong I'm only using one because I almost couldn't close it with both on... 



New housings and H4 bulbs. and the foreman 450 and a mattress I'm storing for the inlaws... 

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  • 2 weeks later...

So, the latest project was carpet. The PO removed the carpet because of a leak in the aftermarket rear window, that he installed. I assume he then had his 5 y/o nephew bedline the floor because that's who looked like put in the work. Heat from the exhaust and road noise was bugging me so off to the junkyard for crap!




All the two MJ's in the yard had been worked over and were now pretty much useless so I found an early model XJ with horrible carpet for my donor. Unfortunately, it was the only carpet worth getting. And boy was it filthy!!




Ignore the small pool in the background. My duck likes to play in it... Anyways, this gem cost $11. Forward with some elbow grease..




Crappy bedlined floor...




Trimming the carpet to fit...




Installing the now clean(er) carpet...




And the final product... It's alot cleaner than the pictures make it seem, crappy phone camera...



All in all, I'm overly excited with the outcome. The carpet didn't fit exact but it was very close, and considering the carpet doesn't have any backing to it ( I left it in the donor because it was soaking wet and smelled of elderberries...), I think it fit rather well. So, probably the best thing I've done to the MJ at this point. Now the only noise I hear is the engine/exhaust and wind noise from the less than perfect mostly non-existent window seals...


On to the next project!  

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Got another XJ. It's a 1998 Limited 2wd. Leather seats, roof console and all that jaz... I like it. I bought it from a girl about an hour away. She said her dad told her it had a burned valve. One owner. Brought it home and found 35lbs of compression in cylinder 1. suppose to be around 150 for those of ya'll that don't know. Every other cylinder had between 120-160. Not to shabby for a XJ with 253,000 miles. I'll post a pic later. Plans for now are to fix the valve and do a complete in depth maintenance of the thing then DD it forever. Once that is ready, the MJ restoration will continue. I've decided on a colored bedliner/body armor from Line-X for the paint job. It will be as close to the factory Red as possible. It'll just be matte.  

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Now for the new XJ.




This is how every inch of the floor looked... Clean ya rigs people!






Working on removing the head...












Can you say Carbon...




How to clean your intake and valve cover step 1




Mating surface cleaned and ready



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I'm gonna assume the rings are good. It looked like the valve wasn't seating correctly. The head will be back from the shop tomorrow I hope so I can get the engine back together. The valve actually looked fine.


All my rockauto parts came in today so I'm ready as soon as the head is done.


There is a red rag in that cylinder causing that redish look, lol. I knew someone would ask.

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