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98 Green Cherokee XJ

Old 05-04-2016, 12:34 PM
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Default 98 Green Cherokee XJ

So have had the Cherokee for about 3 months now. Picked it off for a pretty good deal on CL. Was an AZ/CA Jeep so that meant no rust! Jeep had 250 000 miles on it and was sounding a bit rough. This is my 2nd Jeep, I had a 2005 Jeep Wrangler TJ which I built up previously.

My goal is to build up a Cherokee that can be a comfortable DD, yet still capable of doing trails. I will be using the Jeep to drive to school everyday, and exploring some trails over weekends.

Jeep wasn't in the best condition when I got it. First thing that had to be done was a rear axle rebuild. Now that I look at it I should've swapped out the D35 for a Chrysler axle. But anyways that'll come with 1 ton steering in the future hopefully. Swapped out the wheel bearings and pinion bearing on the D35 and the ride quality was already much better (old right rear bearing was seized up)

Onto some mechanical stuff. Did the basic fluid change of everything, new coil, distributor cap, plugs, plug leads etc. Properly cleaned some of the engine bay as some of it hasn't been cleaned since it came out the factory most likely.

Did some basic changes, like new stereo head unit, mounted a FireStik CB antenna, blacked out the front grille, mounted some LEDS, added a switch plate over the factory ash tray, fabbed up a plate to close off rear cubby hole and some other stuff I can't think of right now.

Fast forward 1.5 months. Ordered a 3 inch RC country lift with full rear leaf pack. Ordered some spacers too for the front. All in all Jeep will sit around 3.75 inches all around. Just bought some 305/70R16 BFG all terrains on MT alloys to mount on.

Near future plans:

Front axle rebuild
Engine rebuild
Front and rear bumpers

Attached are some pictures of cleaning and what not!




























Last edited by adriaanvn99; 11-27-2017 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 05-10-2016, 07:55 PM
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So things are starting to come together. My RC lift arrived and I got all my tires. Have started some pre lift work. Removed my front bumper and resprayed it black. I ordered pre 96 bumper end caps to put on. I'm not planning on keeping the bumpers stock too long but want it to look neat for the meanwhile.

My Solid Dana 30 front cover also arrived and I sprayed the letters red so long. Quite happy with the outcome



Will hopefully have everything on by the weekend.









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Old 05-10-2016, 08:13 PM
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Good start!
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Old 05-10-2016, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by XJwonders View Post
Good start!
Thanks! Its tough on a student budget but definitely possible! Very happy with the Jeep so far
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Old 05-12-2016, 06:56 PM
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So the pre 96 bumper end caps arrived this afternoon. Just mounted them and pretty happy with the look. Pretty easy and cheap install.

Also started spraying all the necessary bolts this afternoon with PB blaster in preparation for the lift kit I'm putting this weekend








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Old 05-13-2016, 10:03 AM
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Started with the back end of the lift last night. My biggest concern was the front bolt of the leaf springs as these are known for not wanting to come loose. I used a spanner and a small bottle Jack and a can of PB blaster to get it loose. I managed to get the drivers side loose. So the drivers side rear is ready to come out. Will hopefully finish the lift tonight/over the weekend.

Below are some pics of the jeep sitting currently






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Old 05-14-2016, 10:07 AM
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So I managed to finish the rear lift last night. Was a full brand new leaf pack from RC with a 1 inch shackle extender. Everything went in smoothly and no big issues!

I also removed the rear sway bar for now.

Very happy with how the rear is sitting. My tires a 305/70/R16 On 16x8 Mickey Thomson Alloys.

I should have the front end finished tonight

Attached are some pics








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Old 05-16-2016, 11:57 AM
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Managed to get the drivers side coil spring, shock and lower control arm. The passengers side wheels one lug nut stripped and I cant get it off. Have tried everything I have. Went to Sears to get a craftsman bolt extractor set but they were closed. My last option is to weld a bolt onto the existing stripped nut and then screw it off. I can't think of any other possible way to get it off. The casing has already shredded off so it's just the actual nut left.

Attached is a picture of the stripped nut.

Any suggestions to get it off?


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Old 05-16-2016, 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Veeb0rg View Post
Thanks for the suggestion. I'll head over to Sears and check out the craftsman set which works the same. I'm hoping I can get it off and install the rest of the lift. If not I'll have to go rent a welder.
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Old 05-16-2016, 06:21 PM
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Looking forward to seeing this finished. RC isn't known for being the best but many can't argue with the price. The only good about that rear sway bar is using the brackets as bar pin eliminators. The instructions of the lift should tell you to remove it too
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Old 05-17-2016, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by unidentifiedbomb View Post
Looking forward to seeing this finished. RC isn't known for being the best but many can't argue with the price. The only good about that rear sway bar is using the brackets as bar pin eliminators. The instructions of the lift should tell you to remove it too
Thank you for the comment, appreciated! Yeah I had mixed feelings, but knowing that I won't be keeping it too long (1 - 1.5 years) I thought it would be best bang for the buck. So far I'm pretty happy with the quality, but will give it some proper testing once it's done.
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Old 05-17-2016, 12:38 AM
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Quick update:

Went to Sears and got a Craftsman bolt extractor set (reverse thread thing that tightens opposite to direction of turn). Unfortunately did not turn, just shredded the metal. This is very strange as it should've come loose by now. I also tried to drill it out, but I stopped once drill bit hit the wheel hub assembly bolt. My only option now is to torch it and break it off that way.

On a positive note, I ordered a FlowTech Raptor muffler for $28. I thought it was a decent price. It's a competitor with the Super 44 muffler.

Attached are some pics of my new stereo install and the switch plate install, which runs the front LED's and aux fan bypass






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Old 05-18-2016, 06:02 PM
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Looking good. I feel your pain because I had to cut or torch a few bolts on my front end and I'm expecting more when I replaced my rear shocks. It is a challenge, but I enjoy learning how to work on my XJ.
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Old 05-18-2016, 07:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Kuya View Post
Looking good. I feel your pain because I had to cut or torch a few bolts on my front end and I'm expecting more when I replaced my rear shocks. It is a challenge, but I enjoy learning how to work on my XJ.
Thanks man! Yeah struggling with bolts ain't any fun. But it makes you learn your XJ like you said! Goodluck with your build
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