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I absolutely enjoy watching your attention to detail. How many of us would’ve thought to move the jack to under the hood with such beautiful execution? Tip of the cap, sir. 

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Official build thread begins on my ’92 MJ project – named ‘Son of Stink’ – before I complete my ’89 MJ project overhaul. Here’s a link to my MJOTM write up from 2012.   The ’92 has been my d

“Rough” print outs of switch pod overlays I’m making. I did the design/ layout and will get these produced as a sticker then cover them with a thin clear textured laminate similar to the finish of the

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Every once in a while I'll read a build thread and think "hmm, why didn't I think of that?"

 

On this build thread it happens about once per post. :L:

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Thanks -- appreciate the kudos. My first re-do of my '89 MJ (different/dormant build thread on CC) I was so excited to get it finished I missed so many details. Many "wish I did's". This Son of Stink '92 MJ build is my get it right for both itself and for my go-back-to/ next project...the '89 MJ that I will revisit, but build better this round. 

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The wife loves when I use the dining room table as a place of MJ assembly…so I was up early cutting/mocking the rear cab box. Again, my aim is to create an XJ/MJ era looking sub box as Jeep may have done back in the day that doesn't eat up useful back of cab space. So…2 separate 6.5” boxes are built inside the shroud.

 

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The assembly is 5” deep and roughly 15.25” wide. About 2” of it will rest on the back of cab ledge. The final product may not be as high as this design. I need to adjust as to where the speakers will fall, height of the floor ‘hump’, center console, etc. I need to get it dialed to ‘look’ right. The overhang on the front side is so to neatly trim around the cab floor and hump as I want it not to look like an after-thought. (The gaps in photos won’t be there at final assembly…this is just cut pieces stacked together.)

 

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Inside there is enough space for the subs to be attached to their individual boxes/enclosures and a small gap so to install the factory speaker grilles. (That piece of wood is at an angle so to show the gap inside the enclosure. It'll be vertical in final assembly.) I think I’m going to wrap this in the padded seat black vinyl upholstery so to contrast with the black carpet of the floor and back of cab wall.

 

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My OCD got the best of me and I wanted to get the tire iron under the hood also. Drilled a hole through the Ford bracket, and a threaded hole through the factory lug wrench on the side and got it in. Due to the location of it in relation to the hood prop rod I needed to use a 1/4" stainless screw versus a wing nut. I'm going to keep an eye out in the wrecking yards as there's got to be a wing nut that fits the bill.

 

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Also got a delivery from my recent favorite internet supplier -- connectorexperts.com. By finding OEM female Dodge terminals I was able to build my own 3rd brake/cargo light harness for the Ford lens that could have the proper factory wire colors off the footwell light and brake light switch. I used era correct 150 series terminals/connector on the cab-to-light side harness. The 4-pin connector I used can be found on the '89-'96 XJ overhead console wiring harness at the passenger kick panel (part of it is in the dashboard wiring harness and the other part is on the overhead wiring when equipped). 

 

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And finally I tracked down the long lost passenger to my driver side NOS '95 XJ front fender flare. In '95 the front of the front flare was widened so the entire flare covered the tire. It's just a cosmetic difference, but I like how it looks over the earlier model front flares. ('96 XJ's were the same except they had slightly grainy texture different from what was available on the MJ rear flare.) All flares on this build will be painted satin black.

 

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Decided I’m going to see how the Laredo silver dash overlay works on the MJ with a black interior. My gauge cluster surround is already painted black. It should contrast nicely with the exterior paint and charcoal ‘jeep’ logo’d wrangler denim bucket seat inserts. Will see. Interestingly — and thankfully — to note there is no chrome outline around all the sections of this overlay as it came on Laredo models. I was going to sand off that chrome and paint it black, but as it turns out don’t have to… 

 

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Minimal day, but got the fuel tank assembled and ready to install. New hoses, clamps, pump, filter, breather vents, wire loom, and connector.

 

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Over-stretched my back a bit so I need to take it easy for a couple days... Found a stainless steel thumb screw that works perfectly along the hood prop rod (and doesn't get in the way). Also, took delivery of my new modified PDC map and stuck it to the inner lid. Back to doing nothing I go...

 

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Nine 50lbs bags of river rocks are on my frame cross member in lieu of the bed & camper shell so I could mount the sway bar endlink brackets. Here's a shot of the passenger side. Managed to drop a nut into the frame rail and need to fish that out, but otherwise the install went well. (I take the rear tires off when removing/ installing the bed as it shaves about 4" of lift height. And yes, I already tightened that bumpstop bolt.) Fuel tank soon to be reinstalled...

 

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Final rear sway bar install pics -- All bushings well greased with Energy Suspension goop and access holes capped.

 

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Got the tank in place...I routed the factory taillight wiring under and against the lip of the frame rail. The way the factory it came from the factory is a pain to deal with when removing the bed, as it is attached to the bed in two different places. It's not out of the way of everything. Just to be extra cautious, I added a rubber trim across the front edge of the fuel tank. I also added another rubber strip on the edge of the frame rail that the fuel tank rests against. New fuel and vent hoses throughout. (The fuel tank vent lines will be attached to the parking brake equalizer mounting bracket at final assembly).

 

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Underside shot. The 'other' 3-pin weatherpack connector attached at the cab is for the camper shells 3rd brake light (when/if running the shell). And the 2-pin weatherpack connector is for 12V power should I decide to run it to the bed.)

 

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Always soooo cleannnnn :)

 

What kind of hose did you use for vent hose?

I'm working on different vehicle and the fuel hose from parts store is to big OD to fit the frame clips without kinking the hose shut.

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Started the morning with a heat gun gently pulling back the original gray headliner material…Success. Next I did some minor sanding on the bottom side of my MJ overhead console creation to get it dialed to the headliner I’ll be using. This headliner was installed NOS when I got this MJ back in 2012, so it’s still in good shape…and the cut-out towards the front was done to accommodate an interim mini overhead console I quickly cobbled together back then. Another hole needed to be cut in the headliner for the storage compartment area to ‘sink in’. I should note, this console is a heavily modified/sanded down XJ unit to accommodate the MJ’s arching roof. The tail end of the console is from a diced-up Chryco minivan console – and lots of plastic bonding compound with endless sanding. And sanding. And sanding.

 

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Then I put the headliner in place and test fit the console for front mounting bracket adjustment. This mounting bracket is a modified XJ bracket. If you look close at the raised ridges of this bracket, you’ll see where I did a straight cut of those ridges so the bracket could be easily adjusted while in place to fit the overhead console. A couple of tests/ bends and I was in business.

 

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First pass I hung the console and fastened it front side with the mounting screw to see how the rear of the console would hang. A small gap was present…knew that was coming due to the consoles weight. Long ago I grabbed as many Grand Waggy SJ overhead console mounting brackets as I came across because I had a feeling I’d need that backside tab for getting things to work in the MJ. At first, I considered using the full stretch of the SJ bracket, but I saw it would take more work than just a few bends to work…so despite running the risk of SJ-er’s hating me forever cutting up this hard to find bracket, I fired up the Dremel. This tab was the exact ¼” rise I needed to get the back of the console pinned to the headliner. Know that the higher side of the brackets tab needs to go towards the front of the MJ, whereas it was facing the opposite direction in the SJ. (Newer XJ consoles are easier to mount back side of the overhead console as it has a tab that simply fits behind the headliner and wedges itself in place. Perfect for MJ-er's who do the '97+ XJ swap, but for my build I wanted to keep things era pure.)

 

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Since this console was derived from the first-gen Dodge minivan and adapted to the XJ when Chrysler acquired Jeep, I learned that in a handful of applications this console was attached to the vehicles roof via a hole in the sunglass bin. The SJ was an example of where this was done. Another test fit with the bracket in place (and mounting screw cut to the proper length so not to go through the roofs sheetmetal)… Perfect… I could hear the SJ bracket contact the roof, so it will be good to tack into place after several more test-fits.

 

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Final photo is for those considering installing CRL sliders… not a big deal, but FYI, the headliner and a small (less than an 1/8” gap) shows when the window is open. This slider was installed on the truck when I purchased it. My fix for this gap is a sideways mounted ’97 XJ rear passenger doors gap seal mounted on the MJ horizontally. Fits and looks well with minor trimming. I haven’t decided if I’m going with a new CRL deep tinted slider (same style), solid or factory glass, or back in 2016 I worked with a local custom automotive builder to create a deep tinted solid glass exact size and fit as the factory glass. Due to the cost involved, I ended up getting 3 rear solid glass pieces to possibly use on both MJ’s. Need to figure out what I’m going with.

 

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Lots of scrubbing removing too many years of tar and grime. Also degreased the truck as starting on body work...Beginning at the rockers where rock chips will be filled with putty then on to larger dings and dents throughout.

 

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Changed my design idea for the 6.5" sub boxes...cut wood and I like them. What was once going to be a single dual speaker box is now individual boxes. No doubt true sound enthusiasts may cringe at my box setup, but again, my aim is to create something that would've/ could've been been installed by Jeep back in the day of the MJ. They'll sit dead center behind each bucket seat and measure out 14"H x 9.5"W x 5" D. They're notched at the bottom as they'll be mounted on top and forward of the floorboard ledge at the back of the MJ cab.The factory speaker grilles on the boxes are at the same height as the B-pillar speaker grilles. 

 

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Up early sanding away…

 

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I started on the not fun stuff – Sanding door jambs (strikers removed as well) and all the rounded-out areas, such as back of the cab and front of the bed, under the cab rocker panels, etc. Moved on to emblem areas as the previous owner used super glue to stick some of the un-stuck emblems. Also removed the back of cab glass and cleaned up around it as well. The CRL slider glass was installed with butyl tape by PO…which has its pros/cons. The glass can be removed a lot faster then cutting glass out, but the clean up of butyl is insane. Takes forever.

 

Once I sand down the body entirely I’ll go back and putty the small rock chips rocker side, front header panel, and deal with the wear caused by the camper shell 'boot' around the back glass. Then will move on to the dings and dents. My aim is to have all the body work done so I can primer/ paint it by October.

 

Next up is swapping in a tilt steering column...

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Getting down to the nitty gritty body prep on the MJ…This truck was painted once before probably due to factory clear coat failure. I’d say it was a medium grade repaint – decent but the attention to detail wasn’t the best, as when they pulled the factory ’92 SporTruck decals they didn’t take the time to sand the body side down and build it back up so that when you look at the panels you wouldn’t see and slightly feel the raised decal location. Also, the bottom of panel drippage/ build up was a bit thick. Went after all that this morning – under the rockers, around the fender openings. Additionally, went after all the curved surfaces (the pain in the @$$ areas to sand) as a first step to body prep. And once sanding was done, a quick shot of SEM etching primer covered any bare metal spots until the entire truck heads to the booth and gets primer/ paint.

 

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There are spot-weld panel gaps and slop to address where the cab meets the rocker on both sides and in other areas; and I’ll point out to those working towards a repaint also there is a clear plastic protective paint strip located at the front lower edge of the door opening that need to be removed prior to paint. The ones on this truck had been painted over…This is where the strip was located.

 

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Also went to town cleaning out the interior. Spent the 3 hours blasting air in every nook and cranny of the cab, vacuuming it out, airing it again, vacuuming, air...wiping it down repeatedly. First pass at de-dusting. My goal is to not blow any unwanted dust onto paint when laying it down. Plan on doing it again just prior to hitting the booth. Next step on interior clean up will be steaming the air ducts to see what comes out. RedMistress inspired me to go through this effort. I did physically wipe out all the air passages and inside the HVAC box back in 2013 when I installed a new heater core, evaporator, and entire AC system (factory new ’95 XJ R134a components), but it will be interesting to see how dirty things have gotten since then.

 

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What a beautiful rig!!

I gotta say, I need to stop looking at the builds from CA, TX & the like!  I drove to North Carolina after doors & a box.... the rig in the junk yard was nicer than the one I am restoring!  Holy Crap, you guys live in a Candy Land!!! No pits, no broken bolts, no holy sheet metal!

Then on top of the pristine nature (as viewed by someone living in Michigan) of the projects at kick off,   add your effort, your skills and talents!

 

Seen enough....  :brickwall: just gonna sell my tools & move into the basement ..... 

 

What a beautiful build!

 

My hat is off! :beerchug:

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  • 4 weeks later...

Been a bit quiet lately as I had been researching for MJ interior parts like crazy...I just got back from collecting those parts for the MJ’s black interior across the US. I flew out to the east coast, then drove back-- hell of a drive. I started in CT where I got a mint dash, center console and kick panels…Followed by Minnesota where I collected a mint complete interior (except the dash as it had a crack, and no center console – was a bench seat) from this little rust bucket (thumbs up to ProFast Auto Wreckers as they have a nice stash of XJ’s they didn’t realize they had 84-01)…Then off to Texas where I got a NOS bedliner. Then back home to CA at midnight last night. Was a 5 day trip and I’m beyond tired, but grabbed some good interior stuff. 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Been a while since an update...Puttying dings has been my main focus, in addition to cleaning interior parts I pulled from the road trip. Spent way too many hours cleaning up one of black dashboard finds -- inside and out, front and back. Very few cracks on any of the plastic, support pieces or otherwise. Even inside the glove box, top right corner...the little square-ish box with rivets, no cracks. Can't say I've owned or seen another XJ/ MJ without a crack in this area (unless new). The heap I pulled this from had a under 70K which I'm sure helped. All vents on this dashboard will be replaced. Couple more dashboards and lots more interior parts to clean, sort and select from. Currently the dash is coated with GooGone to loosen up the dirt stuck in the 'grain' of the material. Works great, I let it soak for an hour and wipe off, then follow-up with a mild dishwash soap/water mix.

 

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In the crazy pursuit of finding true black plastic molded '91+ lighted sunvisor mirrors for this project — I made a discovery. A laughable break-through. Actually two...There were 2 style sunvisors in 1990 XJ/MJ (this I did know prior) - both short. The ‘first gen’ was a cardboard variant similar to the 1984-1989 XJ/MJ. Then ‘second gen’ sunvisor was the hard plastic design that saw its way through end of XJ production in 2001. The first hard plastic offering has a molded black plastic lighted mirror (never knew this) without the adjustable dimmer later years had. The lid of this unit had a light gray surround and fabric insert (as these visors did through 1996). Now here’s the second thing I learned in the quest to find molded black plastic mirror assemblies... Ford in their Lincoln Town Car only (not Crown Vic) used the same lighted mirror assembly as the 1991-2001 XJ/MJ or an alternative is on the 1998-2002 Mercury Grand Marquis which had the exact same assembly as the 1990 XJ/MJ in black. The difference between the Lincoln and the Mercury vanity assemblies is the lid. In 1990-1992 Lincoln used the same mirror as the XJ/MJ, then went to a slightly narrower, 1” wider mirror until 1998-2002 when they again used that same old mirror assembly design as the XJ/MJ. All molded in black as an interior option choice for the Town Car and Grand Marquis. So…I just need to swap the assembly lid or simply use the entire Lincoln or Mercury black mirror assembly (and scrub off the airbag warning label if using the Lincoln. Mercury put the airbag warning label on the visors cloth.) The reason for all this chaos is the black interior swap I’m doing on the MJ with a modified overhead console install... and I wanted to keep lighted visors driver and passenger side. I’m nuts yes, as I know anything can be painted, but one scratch and back to disassembly/re-paint. I just don’t want to deal with that. Feeling victorious although I don't think I've ever looked at myself in a visor vanity. Typically would be in the rear view mirror...Oh well.

 

Below two pics of the 1990 'second gen' sun visor mirror assembly.

 

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1998-2002 Lincoln Town Car scrap mirror to test for lid disassembly...and further down ebay find in black.

 

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1998-2002 Grand Marquis vanity mirror assembly (difference between this and the Lincoln's is the lid).

 

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Lid is easily removed too... Mirror was cracked out of the car I pulled it from.

 

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Devil in the detail work with the black dashboard continues...Over the past week I have wiped Zymol Vinyl Conditioner on 10 times (twice a day, morning and evening). The first 5-6 times I wiped it on it soaked completely in and left the dash how it looked soon after I cleaned all the dust/dirt off it -- somewhat dry. The next 4 times I hit the dash with the conditioner, it continued to benefit in look and appearance -- and was not left greasy to the touch. The end result? The dashboard has ply in it again. It isn't often I rave about a product, but Zymol really delivered on its promise and left a 33 year old dashboard looking like new in appearance and condition. I've also removed the original HVAC vents and felt attached to the dash around the HVAC insert. I'll be replacing that old felt with the soft side of black velcro strips. I've done this in the past and it works great. I do however 'buzz' down the velcro a bit before I install it with a clothing 'pill' remover. Reduces the velcro height and allows the HVAC vent to adjust left and right properly.

 

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I also pulled my 'old' dashboard out this morning, again in prep for paint. I've gotten good at dash pulls as I've been doing it quite a bit lately -- know where all the wire retainers are back side of dash and snip them off in a flash. Important step here that's easily forgotten...Pull the VIN plate! No crazy cutting needs to happen when doing this. No need to drill-out the rivets of the plate to get it off and onto the next dash. The trick is a heat gun...Run it across the VIN plate and a little at a time using a flat/wide x-acto blade pry it up. the VIN is riveted into plastic, the heat obviously expands the plastic and the plate comes right out. Being gentle when prying is important. Now to put it on the new dash. I put a light dab of JB Weld onto the backside of rivets and it keeps the VIN plate put. The cowl defroster is getting replaced as both mounting tabs are cracked. This unit you are looking at was NOS for a '95/'96 XJ back in 2012. I replaced the dashboard original to the truck back when I bought it (as the original dash was cracked). This newer cowl duct is a single piece/molded plastic, where as the older design was two-piece plastic riveted together...I can tell you as I've toured junkyards over the many years the original duct design is less often cracked at the mounting tabs. It's a less rigid plastic. I'll be going back to the original cowl design and was lucky enough to locate a NOS one back East.

 

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Next to go is the windshield...

 

 

 

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19 hours ago, Gjeep said:

Devil in the detail work with the black dashboard continues...Over the past week I have wiped Zymol Vinyl Conditioner on 10 times (twice a day, morning and evening). The first 5-6 times I wiped it on it soaked completely in and left the dash how it looked soon after I cleaned all the dust/dirt off it -- somewhat dry. The next 4 times I hit the dash with the conditioner, it continued to benefit in look and appearance -- and was not left greasy to the touch. The end result? The dashboard has ply in it again. It isn't often I rave about a product, but Zymol really delivered on its promise and left a 33 year old dashboard looking like new in appearance and condition. I've also removed the original HVAC vents and felt attached to the dash around the HVAC insert. I'll be replacing that old felt with the soft side of black velcro strips. I've done this in the past and it works great. I do however 'buzz' down the velcro a bit before I install it with a clothing 'pill' remover. Reduces the velcro height and allows the HVAC vent to adjust left and right properly.

 

 

I also pulled my 'old' dashboard out this morning, again in prep for paint. I've gotten good at dash pulls as I've been doing it quite a bit lately -- know where all the wire retainers are back side of dash and snip them off in a flash. Important step here that's easily forgotten...Pull the VIN plate! No crazy cutting needs to happen when doing this. No need to drill-out the rivets of the plate to get it off and onto the next dash. The trick is a heat gun...Run it across the VIN plate and a little at a time using a flat/wide x-acto blade pry it up. the VIN is riveted into plastic, the heat obviously expands the plastic and the plate comes right out. Being gentle when prying is important. Now to put it on the new dash. I put a light dab of JB Weld onto the backside of rivets and it keeps the VIN plate put.

 

The cowl defroster is getting replaced as both mounting tabs are cracked. This unit you are looking at was NOS for a '95/'96 XJ back in 2012. I replaced the dashboard original to the truck back when I bought it (as the original dash was cracked). This newer cowl duct is a single piece/molded plastic, where as the older design was two-piece plastic riveted together...I can tell you as I've toured junkyards over the many years the original duct design is less often cracked at the mounting tabs. It's a less rigid plastic. I'll be going back to the original cowl design and was lucky enough to locate a NOS one back East.

 

 

 

 

 

soooooo much good info in here!  can you do some separate writeups in the DIY so it's more searchable?  :brows:   I knew about using the wheelwell liners from later XJs, but didn't think about interior parts being made from improved plastics! 

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