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trick34

1988 lowered 2wd sport truck build

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Hi everyone it has been a goal of mine for a while to build my very own lowered Comanche. This is the start of my build. I picked up a straight bodied 1988 4.0l manual with factory Dana 44 limited slip. I had been eyeing this truck for a few months on the side of the road just waiting for the owner to have his gate open and finally one day I went in and bought it. Here is the truck the day I bought it. Original paint was charcoal gray but someone liked baby blue more :doh: .

 

i will have updates coming soon as I have already started this build. More pics to come in the next few days. 

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Get rid of baby blue quick as possible :laugh: does she run? Nice clean MJ :L:

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that is such an odd color for a jeep truck.  I wonder why they went with it.  :thinking:

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5 minutes ago, Pete M said:

that is such an odd color for a jeep truck.  I wonder why they went with it.  :thinking:

I am not sure either, but I almost like it.

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I like it better than that neon green everyone is using.It just needs alittle something to break it up.That's alot of blue I'd keep it.

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4 hours ago, MJXJjeepguy said:

Get rid of baby blue quick as possible :laugh: does she run? Nice clean MJ :L:

I am working a deal with a friend and owner of a local body shop to put it back to the original color. I am considering doing the 97+ front clip, but am still making sure I can deal with having different flares front and rear. (I’m pretty picky about stuff like that) 

 

Yes runs great! It had the typical BA 10/5 leaking slave cylinder, but I fixed that already. New clutch flywheel and slave. 

 

Thank you I'm pretty happy with it overall. 

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47 minutes ago, Pete M said:

that is such an odd color for a jeep truck.  I wonder why they went with it.  :thinking:

The best I can tell is it might have been a fleet truck for a utilities company. I think I recall older California state trucks being that color. My 65 year old father confirmed that California used something like that color at one point. Who ever did it paid for a good job, they painted inside the bed and also between the cab and bed. It saddens me that they painted over gray though. 

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Pulled the shell off and drove it around a bit. I am very surprised how clean the bed is. I lowered it a few days after these pics were taken and will post pictures of what I did and parts I used. 

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31 minutes ago, trick34 said:

I am working a deal with a friend and owner of a local body shop to put it back to the original color. I am considering doing the 97+ front clip, but am still making sure I can deal with having different flares front and rear. (I’m pretty picky about stuff like that) 

 

Yes runs great! It had the typical BA 10/5 leaking slave cylinder, but I fixed that already. New clutch flywheel and slave. 

 

Thank you I'm pretty happy with it overall. 

U know u can swap rear fender flare with very little modify like need to drill relocation hole and little trimming on plastic flare parts to make it fit it flush, i have seen someone done that and it don't look hard to do,and yea better match up front and rear.

But for me i would leave it, but it ur jeep, ur money lol :L:

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FRONT SUSPENSION

Lowering the truck was pretty straightforward. As you all know it has a straight beam axle in the front so lowering is as easy as getting springs that are shorter, shorter shocks, and an adjustable trackbar/panhard bar. 

 

I choose to use rear springs off of a 2004 grand Cherokee because they are 2.5 inches shorter than stock Comanche springs and the spring rate is roughly 15% stiffer. 

 

I used Rancho RS5235 front shocks which are pretty stiff and are 3 inches shorter than stock. 

 

For my track bar I build my own adjustable unit with the rubicon express RE1665 track bar mount. 

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REAR SUSPENSION

 

For the rear, to achieve my desired outcome much more extensive work was needed. The main bulk of the lowering was using a block to lower the truck. I chose a 3 inch block with new u-bolts. Once I lowered the truck I noticed that the axle was about 1 inch closer to the front than to the back. 

 

 

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This was a surprise to me, but (upon additional research and google image searching) I discovered most lowered Comanches have this same problem. So I tasked myself with coming up with a solution. What I came up with was moving the springs front mounting location back 1 inch and up .5 inch. I did this by pulling springs and measuring 4-5 times and drilling new holes. This centered my rear axle perfectly and helped my pinion angle. However it created a new problem.

 

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I solved this by cutting off the rear shackle mount and welding on a new one further back. 6ECFAD26-8047-421D-8712-367AB740268B.jpeg.f5c607cc9448f449b81390979e7c77f1.jpeg

 

I love how the rear suspension geometry turned out. And the stance is pretty good too. :cool:

 

 

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2 minutes ago, kansashogan said:

Ready for more 

Working on it. I’m about 2 weeks ahead of where I am in my updates so I’ll have daily updates for the next few days. 

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Got some 97+ Cherokee doors and hung them today. Gotta figure out the wiring for the power windows but some progress is better than no progress. 

 

Also installed some 2001 Cherokee bucket seats. Definitely more comfortable but a bit of a pain to fab up new mounts. 

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Picked up a new Comanche to add to the collection. Factory dana 44 rear with limited slip. Pretty cool truck. 

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8 hours ago, trick34 said:

Picked up a new Comanche to add to the collection. Factory dana 44 front and rear with limited slip in the rear also. Pretty cool truck. 

 

 

An other blue truck!? Lol but that color blue is much better than the first baby blue :laugh: funny we kinda have some common first i got 91 MJ short bed then few weeks later i got 91 MJ long bed now i have 2 different size and u got 2 also :L: 

What year on ur other MJ? I know first one is 88.

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2 hours ago, MJXJjeepguy said:

An other blue truck!? Lol but that color blue is much better than the first baby blue :laugh: funny we kinda have some common first i got 91 MJ short bed then few weeks later i got 91 MJ long bed now i have 2 different size and u got 2 also :L: 

What year on ur other MJ? I know first one is 88.

This new one I picked up is a 91. I’ve been doing some research on this truck because I believe it is something special. This truck has factory Dana 44 front and rear axles which I have read isn’t a thing. I plan on posting a separate thread on this matter because I haven’t found anyone talking about this on any forums. 

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1 minute ago, trick34 said:

This new one I picked up is a 91. I’ve been doing some research on this truck because I believe it is something special. This truck has factory Dana 44 front and rear axles which I have read isn’t a thing. I plan on posting a separate thread on this matter because I haven’t found anyone talking about this on any forums. 

Yes please post the pic of axle! 

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On 6/1/2019 at 7:53 AM, MJXJjeepguy said:

Yes please post the pic of axle! 

 

Ended up not being a dana 44 front axle

 

i got a little excited and didn’t look closely enough. 

 

 

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Made a little progress on the truck today. I pulled the bed to prep for paint. 

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Painted the truck today. I’m really happy with how it turned out. 

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