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SatiricalHen

College Budget 1987 MJ Build

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I've had a 1999 Jeep Cherokee since 2013, I have learned how to drive, how to work on vehicles, wheeled and built the Cherokee. I have always wanted a Comanche, but most are beat or ridiculously priced. Last Sunday my friend texted me and told me her friend's dad had a Jeep truck that had been sitting a while and she had told them I liked Jeeps and fixing cars up. She asked if they would be interested in selling it to me. She sent me a couple of pictures of the Comanche (I'll upload them later) and I told her I would come get it as soon as I could. This Saturday I got a trailer from my uncle and made an 8 hour round trip to pick it up. Now some info, one owner 1987 Comanche sport truck, 2wd, 130,000 miles, 5 speed, almost perfect body, no rust on "frame" or body, but some in the floor pans, lived its whole life in Charleston.  I figured for $500 it was worth it since the body was in very good condition. It definitely needs some work and has been sitting for a while. The brakes and clutch need work, the fluid has crystallized and I haven't been able to get fluid to come out of the clutch bleeder after getting as much old stuff out and putting fresh fluid in it, and the brakes I got fluid coming out all four bleeders, but ran out of brake fluid before clean fluid was coming out. Hopefully I can get the hydraulics decently flushed, getting tires that aren't dry rotted, and then it will be road worthy.

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Talked about my Cherokee some, but forgot to add pictures of it.
Day I bought it4c9403fbea587e771bc17da98c2fe14e.jpg

Last trip (up in choccolocco in November)

868930fcd6bdb28c65fc1f739762cd88.jpg
aebbabe055b87a86e104297bc6adf1f3.jpg236e6b168ea597b871ee54dc4abea37b.jpeg53ea0fa40b8b70de1fc81a32abef582e.jpeg0997f0f274c8bb098855cd76c7c78204.jpeg9fe1324d280ab84509acf62c757450ae.jpg

Just put 35” Mtrs on it Black Friday
82b2a181b70995487b4bd75c31f75821.jpg7a776d126ae8c762321884aeb244dc23.jpg


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So I have some brake calipers, rotors, and pads from a Cherokee I parted out a while back. They have like 5 miles on them so I’ll throw those on the front once I get the fluid coming out clean. The clutch pedal is cracked so I’ll have to pull it and weld it back up. Ordered a clutch master, line, and clutch kit so I’ll start pulling all of that stuff next time I’m home and hopefully have it driving before Christmas.


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Very similar, but mine will never see 35” tires unless they’re in the bed. Plan to keep it a fuel efficient daily driver. Hopefully it’ll get an ax-15 soonish though. I guess I’ll keep the ba10/5 till it blows. My roommate is trying to convince me to 4x4 swap it.


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Pulled the interior plastics, seat, and flooring. Tossed all the flooring stuff since it fell apart when pulling it and everything was soaked. Not sure where all the liquid was coming in, and not sure exactly how I'm going to fix the rust yet. Any tips, tricks or suggestions welcome. Here's the damage and a picture or two of where the water was coming from on the passenger side. Never had any issues with rust in my Cherokee, I guess I lucked out there. I guess now is the time to learn rust repair. cfaac767907591f5abb326872f598227.jpg6ce768fbc5fd7270403c1c6048030562.jpgeb5def69ec3ba3200a9f34be28edd719.jpge397c086a75b9f3af92da7fab4e15d93.jpge2bde0e7240245cfd001c03d2dab4103.jpgb98257803aac9c482c52a0713b035dd7.jpg42a46e0e21395e0c9bf1bde6a32186c5.jpg74e8a643c96d6d6d5fc79e52b9992aa0.jpgf3ba511206dd3b3e21a6cdd748e9af53.jpg


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The leak from that area on the passenger side is usually the foam gaskets sealing the heater box to the firewall, but it could also be the windshield. On the driver side, 90% of the time it's the connector where the wire harness goes into the firewall. Clutch fluid also contributes to the rust on that side. Basically, check anywhere where any kind of fluid can get into the cab.

 

If I were fixing that much rust I'd be looking for donor metal. The aftermarket floor pans will be thinner than OEM and probably won't cover as much as you need. Other than that, it's a matter of cutting out the rust, welding in new metal, then coating it properly and fixing the leaks so it won't happen again.

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Got me a full gauge cluster, and an ecu from the junkyard today. Put a clutch and slave in it yesterday. Once I button up the crossmember and bellhousing bolts I’ll start it up and see if somehow I got lucky and he had already put the right sensors in for the gauges or if I’ll have to get those from the parts store.


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Drove it around the block today. Tach goes in and out for some reason, parts store gave me the wrong coolant temp sensor, I need to get headlights, the starter went out so I’ve been roll starting it, and the turn signals don’t work. I turn the hazards on and the rears flash, but the fronts don’t and the bulbs are both good in the front. When I turn on the running lights the right turn indicator stays lit up 95e579123302c30d0a289446c8118087.jpg not sure what the deal is or if this is a common thing with these or not. Planned to get tags today, but the dmv is closed till the 27th so I guess I have time to figure my problems out.


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Got a new front harness, all the hazards and running lights in the front work right, but the turn signals don’t work so i have a feeling the turn signal relay needs to be replaced or maybe the multifunction switch on the column. Got a new starter and some courtesy lights for it too at the junkyard, about to try putting the starter in and hopefully she’ll work


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Put the starter in, still no beans so I took them both to the parts store and they tested good, while I was there I got a turn signal relay and fixed the turn signals. I had them order a starter relay and maybe it will solve the issue, if not I can return it. I get power on the solenoid so I don’t know why it won’t work unless it’s just not enough juice. Bled the clutch again and it still feels like it has air in it. I have to pump the clutch a couple times to get it to disengage sometimes. I can’t see any leaks, the master, Slave and clutch line are new. Any tips?

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Got everything working I believe. Engine still hasn’t gotten hot enough to possibly trip the electric fan so not sure on that yet. The temp gauge seems low to me, but I don’t know it could just be how these older ones sit when running. 604e652f01f836d69db0844843353c4c.jpg that’s where it was sitting after idling 20 minutes. Pulled the sensor from the Cherokee I got the gauge cluster from at the junkyard. IR temp gun said about 195 at the thermostat housing. Ordered some led tag lights since one was completely busted and the other was very very dim. Should get them in Wednesday and I’ll hook up the trailer wiring while I’m back there so I can pull my trailer for moving some stuff to school next semester. Here’s a picture of my jeeps parked next to one another. Cherokee is on 35” mtrs with 5.5” of lift and the Comanche is bone stock with 30” tires b915996dd6394569c6e1f65b22ace8b7.jpg4417d4ffaa20b974aaf9876ef60652f9.jpg


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Got cold last night and the windshield cracked so I had that replaced today, tomorrow I’m getting the tag and driving it an hour to college with a trailer to move some stuff in for next semester.


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Pretty sweet you're taking it to school. Hope she takes care of you there. Hopefully you'll see the temp level out on your drive. As for the clutch what method did you use to bleed it? Vacuum or gravity or.. and did you replace anything or just bleed it?

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I have an old Mopar sender in mine and the temp gauge covers up the 2 at about 200 degrees. The aftermarket temp senders are hot garbage, try to find a Mopar one if it bothers you enough to replace it.

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I've had decent luck with aftermarket senders.  They're a pretty simple part to build...  Just don't buy the lowest end garbage (SMP T-series, Rugged Ridge/Omix-ADA, BWD...  Oh wait, I actually have a BWD one in my MJ right now, but still, don't buy that crap).  I'd hit it with an IR gun first to see if the thermostat is the wrong one or sticking, or just pull the housing and look.  Lots of guys throw the wrong (160, 180, not a 195) tstat in these things.  And yeah, the cheapest of the cheapest tstats will give you nothing but trouble too.

 

There's a good chance the temperature switch for your electric fan is dead too.  At least, most of the ones I encounter are.  Or it is just not warm enough for it to come on.

 

Did you get the clutch bled better?  They're a pain.

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I've had decent luck with aftermarket senders.  They're a pretty simple part to build...  Just don't buy the lowest end garbage (SMP T-series, Rugged Ridge/Omix-ADA, BWD...  Oh wait, I actually have a BWD one in my MJ right now, but still, don't buy that crap).  I'd hit it with an IR gun first to see if the thermostat is the wrong one or sticking, or just pull the housing and look.  Lots of guys throw the wrong (160, 180, not a 195) tstat in these things.  And yeah, the cheapest of the cheapest tstats will give you nothing but trouble too.
 
There's a good chance the temperature switch for your electric fan is dead too.  At least, most of the ones I encounter are.  Or it is just not warm enough for it to come on.
 
Did you get the clutch bled better?  They're a pain.
You'd think a thermistor would be easy enough to get right. The one I bought was the most expensive one Rockauto sold. The higher end Standard brand maybe? Anyway, the gauge read about 10-20F higher than what the IR gun and MT2500 said. So next time I went to the junkyard I got a few of them and swapped them out until the gauge, IR gun, and ECU agreed.

That being said I have extraordinarily terrible luck with aftermarket parts. I'm really not sure why. Broke When Delivered throttle position sensors dead out of the box, multiple GM EGR valves of different brands dead in a matter of weeks, crappy temp senders, weatherstripping that doesn't fit even though everyone else says it fits fine for them, etc. At this point the aftermarket parts industry must be playing a joke on me.

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11 hours ago, SatiricalHen said:

Got cold last night and the windshield cracked so I had that replaced today,

 

How did the windshield crack from the cold? I don't think I've ever heard of that unless you pour hot water on it or heat it up with a torch or something.   :confused:

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45 minutes ago, HOrnbrod said:

 

How did the windshield crack from the cold? I don't think I've ever heard of that unless you pour hot water on it or heat it up with a torch or something.   :confused:

I've had a windshield that already had a spider crack go fully across when the wife turned on the defroster... Forgot to warn her on a cold morning to not turn heat onto a cold windshield... Maybe the same case here?

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1 minute ago, Skorpyo said:

I've had a windshield that already had a spider crack go fully across when the wife turned on the defroster... Forgot to warn her on a cold morning to not turn heat onto a cold windshield... Maybe the same case here?

 

Must be. Never seen it happen using the defroster though. You must have a good one.  :D

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