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90 XJ Build

Old 10-23-2012, 01:07 AM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 41
Year: 1990
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 4.0l- 6
Default 90 XJ Build

Well I just want to say thanks everyone on here for you help.

I figured that I would show off my Jeep build. This is my first Jeep that I bought and paid for. Its nice to own the title.

Here it is straight stock...
(Next to my friends WRX of course...)


The paint is a little faded or dinged in places, and there is an unusual lack of rust on here. I was very excited to get a pretty rust free Jeep.

It needed a little TLC to get it running. I ended up cleaning up some grounds, giving it a good tune up with new plugs, wires, distributor cap, oil filter, oil change, and a fresh air filter and a new (used) ignition coil.

I then got it registered, titled and insured. Passed emissions surprisingly even though it was running a little rough.

After a couple of days of semi-reliability I discovered that it had a bad fuel pump. The pump groaned like a dead yeti.

I also discovered the joys of a certain brand of fuel pumps that has a special place in my heart. Air$***#s. I ended up replacing the fuel pump and hanger assembly.

Next I discovered my head gasket leaked. It needed a head gasket swap, so I roped my two friend into helping by bribing them with beer and food.

Look at that fine new gasket on there...

I painted the fenders at this point too.

I also replaced most of the hoses for the cooling system, OK I replaced ALL of the cooling hoses. I replaced most of the vacuum lines, and re-wired a few odd things I had noticed while I was up in there before getting it going.

One was the radiator shroud that made it through the whole ordeal. I went to try to clean up the thermostat housing gasket and brushed up against it, where it shattered into a million pieces.

I put a new valve cover gasket on it, and 2 new thermostat housing gaskets as well. Basiclaly replaced most of anything that was original plasting and/or rubber.

Admiring those lifters, the push rod lifters are pretty neat! I'd love to have a little clear cover on there to watch them. Maybe I am just weird...

Look at my bubbly old head gasket.

This would have been a fantastic place to have new manifold studs installed had I known...

I got to about here, and stopped for the weekend. Partially because I didn't take apart the vacuum system on the other side, and I quite frankly could not figure out how it went together. Instead I took it all apart and waited for my friend to come back down to help me out.

I also did something very dumb, I hoisted the header in myself and then hosited it into the Jeep standing on the frame. I didn't notice at the time but I strained my lumbar. A few days later it started to get very very tight. I went to work on Wednesday and could barely shift my car after not taking my motorcycle into work. At about 10 I was so crippled that I couldn't walk and pushed myself to the front door with one foot and a roll-ey chair. My uncle came to get me and we went to the ER for some Vicodine and Flexaril, and I spend the next three days recovering in bed

Also a stud snapped holding the last bolt on the exhaust manifold...OOPS

Anyhow I though that I had done goofed up on my radiator so I took its leaky butt down to the shop for a pressure test, and to get it inspected. It turns out that i should have not been such a chicken and tightened down the fittings more and they helped me with some coolant leaks. (it leaked everywhere which is why I'm typically not allowed to do anything with plumbing). I also needed them to weld the door hinge back on, so they did that as well, and fiddled with the sensors which were still a little wonky. I asked about my stud and they claimed that I would have to replace the frame rail along the edge and replace the lift gate as there was a piece missing. I decided to forgo the lift gate fix...

They also quoited me something wildly outrageous for the broken stud fix, and I said no thanks to that for the time being. Its good enough for now and isn't leaky at the moment and got my Jeep back. I am sure they were trying to avoid doing that work.

Boom handle it is!

Also had fun melting little sensor hoses for the MAP sensor before I found a hose material that would both fit and stop melting at temp. Here it is at work about to get wrapped in a tape patch job, thicker outer hose, tin-foil, more tape makeshift hose. That was then replaced by parts of the original hose and a few rubber connectors cut to splice them together, then replaced by a new hose part. Here is what I discovered at my bank while trying to pull out unsuccessfully from the ATM, and then again at work with another one before finally getting an original part.

Next I tackled my dirty saggy headliner.

Scrub a dub dub... I had fun gluing the headliner, but I did it inside at night, and forgot to take a picture of the finished result.

I also had some parts that trickled in one by one...

Next it was time for the lift kit install

Brought it up this time to install the lift kit.

Ahh yes a Jeep moment...

During our install it went pretty well. Installed most of the front end in a half day and got some of the back done, then there was one bolt. A leaf prong bolt so fused, so stuck it was rusted solid to the sleeve. After breaking off some saw blades we went (on Sunday) to the junk yard to pull out a new leaf spring bolt. Luckily for us there were some there in good shape and we used a newly acquired reciprocating saw and a diamond blade to cut it out. Got the back installed and tightened down... I also found a replacement adapter fitting for the vacuum controlled front axle, so my 4wd works now.

Here it is....

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Old 10-23-2012, 01:11 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: California
Posts: 1,250
Year: 1989
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 4.0L

Nice. Glad to see I'm not the only one with an older'ish model.

PS, I thought you had a race car bed.
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Old 10-24-2012, 01:16 AM
Junior Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 41
Year: 1990
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 4.0l- 6

Nope you can't kill a Renix, although it will misbehave from time to time, its part of the charm!

There are quite a few around here that I see actually from this era..

HAHA that's the guest room at my Uncles/Grandmas house

Some one is usually home so I shipped my parts there. Had a bike, so there was no transporting any of it to my apartment safely...

It was a good excuse to go visit them on the weekends. They are the only relatives I have in town. Usually they would hold my parts hostage and bribe me with free food for a visit. Can't work on my Jeep at the apartment anyway.... I was once yelled at for topping off the oil in my Civic for "working on my car". Who knew that throwing in a quart was "working on it".

No race car bed! Pretty close though...

Still a college student, I have acquired some nice furniture when my parents retired and moved.

Don't think my GF would appreciate a race car bed... haha ahhh...

Last edited by falcon; 10-24-2012 at 01:19 AM.
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