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89 MJ - Refreshing a Beater

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Just picked up my first MJ, an 89. 4.0, AW4, RWD longbed. 







She's a little rough, but runs and drives. For a little bit, anyways. Overheating, had a head gasket done and that didn't fix it, PO thinks it has a cracked block. For $350, I can't complain.



To be honest, at this point, I'm not sure. I like the 97+ swaps, I'm definitely considering a 4WD swap, I wouldn't mind trying my hand at an engine swap or stroker. I've looked for an MJ for years, so this project will likely be around for a while. 


Immediate plans: Diagnose overheating, pull carpet, overall inspection to see what I'm working with. 



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Where at in SC are you? I would interested in the camper shell with it being a Long bed. I am out of Columbia.

I'm down in Barnwell, about an hour south. I likely won't be needing the camper shell.

Yes I know where it is. I used to live in Aiken for a few years while in college. Let me know if you end up letting it go. I'd come down and get it off your hands.

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Carpet and seats pulled tonight. More rust than I thought. 


Being in SC I have very little experience with fixing rust, but this looks minor enough just to patch and not replace the entire floor pan right? What should be my course of action?






Poking with a screwdriver, this is all the holes I could find. 


Seat bolster bent to crap...


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I'd buy a whole floor panel, XJ ones are cheap, then cut out the piece you need.  Where those holes are, that should be a large patch.  You don't even want to leave deeply pitted metal, even if it isn't through.  So as said, wire wheel back from there and see how far you have to go.  Get a good quality weld through primer and use it religiously.  Use good paint and seam sealer when you're done, then undercoat the bottom again.  Do not half @$$ rust repairs, it's just a complete waste of time if you do.

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  • 2 weeks later...




Here is my organ donor. 92 XJ Sport, 4WD, NP231, AW4. D35/D30 3.55.


It has a new cylinder head with 5k miles on it, new fuel pump, distributor, starter, spark plugs, cap and rotor, Comp Cams custom grind cam, lifters, new header. It has the 01 intake manifold that has been port matched and coated with gold heat wrap with ZJ power steering pump (i think)




I also like the 3 row aluminum radiator and triple electric fan setup.



Not bad for $700.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Put in a few hours today.


Head on, new lifters in. New oil pan gasket and timing cover gasket, crank seal.






And painted. I originally wanted to go with a different color, but black just fits everything.



This engine is a Jasper Reman with 26k miles out of a 92 Jeep Comanche. Current setup is 4.0 HO block bored .060 over, 7120 HO Head (mostly new, only 5k miles on it from Dover Heads in Atlanta), 01 intake manifold, Comp Cams custom grind (mild torque cam), and an aftermarket header of unknown origins,

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I'm trying to decide on a lift. I want to run somewhere around 3-5". I'm torn between piecing a lift together or just getting the Zone 4.5"kit and a track bar. I plan on swapping the D35 out sometime down the road, so the add a leaf only needs to last till then when I go SOA.

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