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Old 04-22-2013, 09:48 PM   #1
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Default Project Bessy

Well my name is Mitch and I've decided to make a build thread. I'm a college student and I've always preferred fast muscle cars with big engines, but I decided to make a change and I bought a 1996 Cherokee SE in early December 2012 from a crappy dealership. Sold my 1995 Camaro Z28 shortly after. I started out completely new to Jeeps and just knew that I wanted off-road ability and a hobby. So I began my research!! And let me say that CherokeeForum has been the greatest aid and learning resource I have ever had for anything.

Issues when I bought it: Dash lights weren't working. Bad belt. Nearly bald 29's. After the first day she began to die randomly on me. I took it to a Jeep dealer because the crappy little dealership wouldn't honor their warranty. My Crank Shaft Position sensor was bad and that was replaced and she ran like a champ. I'm sure there was a couple other random things. Otherwise she was in pretty dang good shape and only had 151k on her I believe. I just wish I would have bought a 1997 -99 for the 29 spline 8.25 but I knew nothing about Jeeps then.

Stock: 27-spline 8.25(not 100% sure since I haven't checked it, but it's an early '96 model so probably), Dana 30, NP231, 29s

First pic is right after I bought it, my good old Z28 is still there. Miss that thing.
Second pic is my first mudding expedition.

Also, sorry my pics aren't in a very good order. I couldn't get them to come up in a decently organized manner but ohwell. Atleast I got the pics here haha
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20121204_112124-1.jpg   Project Bessy-20130121_131919.jpg  
__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 10:42 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:53 PM   #2
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I worked on the few problems. My dash lights were shorting because of the driver side door jamb sensor. I just removed it and now no problem!!

I did a gauge swap so I could have some gauges since idiot lights were useless.

I bought a lift after many months of searching and deciding. 4wheelparts gave me a decent deal on the Rubicon Express 4.5" lift and Bilsteins. I also bought 4 new Pro Comp Series 51 (I think) with 3.75" BS. Wasn't too bad of a deal. I then set forth with the plan of installing the lift over spring break. I am in college so this was a difficult task financially and time wise. Unfortunately I didn't take any pics of the lift itself. Just some after mostly.

1st pic is my old gauge cluster and the new one from some old junkyard cherokee. It has 38k more miles on it but ohwell.
2nd pic is my disasterously messy garage and all of my new lift components.
3rd pic is my new wheels
4th pic is after I completed my 5 day project of lifting the cherokee.
5th pic is actually after I finished the rear, which only took one day :/
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20130219_122337.jpg   Project Bessy-20130321_172507.jpg   Project Bessy-20130321_173157.jpg   Project Bessy-20130403_152838.jpg   Project Bessy-20130330_150513.jpg  

__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 10:24 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 09:59 PM   #3
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As you can see she's a beast on 29s . I installed my ZJ tie rod upgrade too!! It was a big improvement, or atleast it really felt like it. My tie rod ends were probably a bit worn. Then came the tires. 33x12.50x15 BFGoodrich KM2s.

Also a pic of it after the lift next to my moms H2 lol. Still on the 29s but she's still pretty close to the same height. And the H2 has 35s.

1st pic is after my install of the new ZJ tie rod and ends.
2nd pic is after my lift install but before my ZJ tie rod upgrade.
3rd pic is just a front view
4th pic is after the lift and with the new gorgeous tires!!!
5th pic is before the tires and next to the H2
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20130404_171248.jpg   Project Bessy-20130403_162234.jpg   Project Bessy-20130403_173344.jpg   Project Bessy-20130405_171748.jpg   Project Bessy-20130403_193152.jpg  

__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 10:36 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 10:02 PM   #4
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I left the flares on it for awhile but I hit the flares pretty good. So I decided to trim it myself. I learned that a sawzall is a terrible terrible idea for a delicate trim job. I hacked up the back sides to give myself a full turn radius again, then later trimmed them all the up with a jigsaw. Jigsaw was 10 million times more effective for anyone that wants to know.

1st pic is after the new tires also. Thought I'd get a good straight on view
2nd pic is after I removed my front flares to try and get my turning radius back
3rd pic is how much I trimmed off
4th pic is a little flexing and what it looked like before I trimmed them completely. You can see the back part that I hacked off with the sawzall that was so terrible.
5th pic is also pre-trimming messing around.
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20130405_171800.jpg   Project Bessy-20130410_191436.jpg   Project Bessy-20130416_182758.jpg   Project Bessy-20130411_194043.jpg   Project Bessy-20130411_194023.jpg  

__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 10:38 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 10:11 PM   #5
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I had really good vibrations from the lift. I knew I needed an sye and I luckily bought a Rugged Ridge one at the same time I bought the lift. I went to the Junkyard and ripped out a front shaft from a 1990 Cherokee.

First and Third pic is my trimmed fenders. The 2nd is my Front Rear shaft and the leaking Tcase fluid.

I decided to have 4wheelparts install my SYE. I honestly didn't want to attempt the install and removing my Transfercase. The lift itself took me about 5 days lol so I really didn't want to lose my daily driver for any longer. They did the install and said all went good. 2 days later I tried to put it into 4hi and the shifter wouldn't budge, I argued on the phone for a while with em til I brought it back in. They said the mechanic managed to get it through the 4wd gears no problem before I took it back. Well they looked it over and it turned out to be a manufacturing error from RuggedRidge, so they blatantly lied to me about it because there was no way it could have gone into 4wd. The next day my Tcase was leaking, I brought it in a few days later and they "fixed" it with some silicone. By the time I got home it was leaking again. Called them up and they said to try and add more silicone. So to this day now I haven't fixed my leak but I'll bring it back to em soon. This was all a week or so ago haha.

You can see the rear diff is covered in fluid from my Tcase leaking. Really frustrating but it's my DD and I have school full time and work full time so unfortunately, I don't have much time to deal with it.
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20130416_182803.jpg   Project Bessy-20130413_161306.jpg   Project Bessy-20130417_165634.jpg  
__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 10:28 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 10:20 PM   #6
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Well I went to get my CB today and the store was closed for some reason. Anyways found a place to finally test out my flex ability.

I feel it does pretty good for short arms. I could've gone farther but the back tires started going up the ramp too so I figured I'd stop. Plus the truckers around were giving me odd looks lol.

To Do List/Upgrade List:

Fix Coolant, Oil, and Tcase leaking
Install my B&M Supercooler for the tranny and the new B&M tranny gauge
CB and PA
O2 Sensors
DOORLESS FOR SUMMER!!
Roof Rack and Full Size Spare with a HiLift
New Rear axle, most likely I'll get a G2 Dana 44 geared to 4.88s
Upgrade and Regear the Dana 30 to 4.88
35" tires or larger (Most likely larger)
Long Arms, probably the RE long arm upgrade
Bushwacker Flat Flares? Maybe
I'm sure I'll think of more

So this transformation has taken from early December til now in the middle of April of 2013(roughly 5 months I think). I moved a little faster than I should've but I wanted to make something unique and mine.

Any opinions or anything you want to comment on or add just let me know!!! I may come through and clean this up or add stuff since I'm sure there is a lot I've forgotten.
Attached Thumbnails
Project Bessy-20130422_153718.jpg   Project Bessy-20130422_153733.jpg   Project Bessy-20130422_153726.jpg   Project Bessy-63utf-863b63cghvdg8gmi5kuec-63-.jpg   Project Bessy-63utf-863b63cghvdg8gms5kuec-63-.jpg  

__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing

Last edited by Eagle564; 04-22-2013 at 11:33 PM.
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:12 PM   #7
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Looks good so far man. you going to trim the rears too, or leave them as is??
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:16 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roblaza View Post
Looks good so far man. you going to trim the rears too, or leave them as is??
Thank you I haven't decided on the rears yet. i think I'll eventually get bushwacker flat flares since it's illegal here right now to not have coverage. The rears might be enough to keep me outta trouble for now and they aren't causing problems with the tires yet.
__________________
-1996 Cherokee, 4.0 HO, NP231, 155k Miles
-4.5" Rubicon Express Super-Flex Lift
-Bilstein 5100's
-33x12.50x15 KM2's
-Series 51 Pro Comp Wheels, 3.75" Backspacing
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:16 PM
 
 
 
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