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The IrishXJ

Old 10-06-2017, 07:13 AM
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Okay everyone so I decided that I might as well just start my build thread. I will not be fully engaged in this build until a couple months from now but why not just use this to start asking questions and talking about what is needed for my truck.

After several months of lurking around here looking at all these great builds I have decided to finally pull the trigger on my 1989 XJ. I'm deployed right now and the owner of the rig was more than willing to hold out until I get back to take delivery of the Jeep. Of course we worked out a deal to help with that process but in the meantime it will stay at his house. Clean title, runs and drives but like anything comes with its own problems. Some of them I know and some of them I will find out once I get it.

I could have probably found one with less issues and perhaps in better shape but at the price I got this I couldn't resist. Well we will see if that holds true but still worst case I rig it up for trails beat the **** out of it and move onto something else learning as much as I can and without spending too much into it.

It will have some interior gremlins to work out, to include some floor rust hopefully nothing beyond repairs but from what I have been told passenger floor board only but its cancer and it spreads so I will be willing to bet it is has and I will be replacing more than just that area. It is also in Washington and although not a salt using state it still is rainy and lots of moisture along with sitting.

Little about me, married 4 kids and a dog Bruno (Boxer). They are my life and take up 90% of my time when I'm not at work putting in time for Uncle Sam (Navy). So that will not leave me a great amount of time to work on the Jeep but when I do I will make the best of it. I plan to wrench on it all winter and get it ready for the summer. My son who is 12 now will enjoy this Dad/Son project and I know my girls will too! Who knows maybe my son will get it when he is old enough to drive if anything is left to it.

If anything comes positive from this adventure it will be us learning a ton more about Jeeps and perhaps the next one will which I'm sure I will get another will be twice as badass!

Purpose: Offroad adventures but nothing serious just some fun in the woods and off roading.

Items already purchased or obatined:

Rubicon Express 4.5" Coils
Rubicon Express Super Flex Adjustable UCA's

Things needed and bookmarked:

Heavy Duty Track bar with brackets (Possible RE type)
Shocks
Tires
Leafs for rear lift and relocation brackets with no lift, shackles
stainless steel brake lines extended
Lower Control Arms Adjustable
SYE

There are more but those are a few things I have bookmarked and pending to purchase. Oh and never the less I did not forget the basics, fluids flush, tune up kit, etc. Nothing about this is going to be worth putting any money into until at least all the basic mechanical items are done first.

I have mechanical background from my family expierence and growing up around it, plus I work on all my vehicles. Sorry but I own a F350 DRW (DIESEL) and Excursion both Fords yes I know

This is my first Jeep and can't wait to get home and tear into it. Please enjoy the one and only photo I have so far. I would apprieciate any advice or support you guys have with any items I should need. Looking to run 33" tires and full 4.5" lift all around.

By the way the name above is not something I have stuck with. I mean lets be honest it is red and the Irish don't go well with red. So who knows or maybe it will eventually undergo a paint job!!

Thank you!

Last edited by XJIrish4x4; 10-06-2017 at 07:24 AM.
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Old 10-06-2017, 07:27 AM
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From what it looks like it appears to have budget lift on it running 32x11.5x15 tires all of which will need to be replaced not long after I get it. Spare is on top and I was told it was brand new. Which means nothing since it has been exposed to weather elements by sitting on top of the Jeep.
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Old 10-06-2017, 09:31 AM
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Here is my first question regarding the Jeep and parts not related to the lift. The windshield is going to need new seals/weatherstripping. Possibly the windshield moulding if there is any on these years? Where can I find the proper stuff to fix that? Windshield is all intact and fine no cracks, so if anything I will need to have it pulled out, new seal, and installed back in.

I also read some place that you can use the newer XJ windshields think 97+ to put in the older ones that true?

Really I'm just looking at replacing the old seal and put in a new one so I can order OEM parts some place and someone knows where please let me know.
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Old 10-06-2017, 09:41 AM
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Looks like it is the same color as mine, I think they call mine Chili Pepper red. I'm jealous of that roof rack you ended up with in the deal.

Someone else would know more than me if the windshields are the same or not. I have changed out quite a few windshield gaskets myself. It takes two people, patience and a lot of lubrication is all.
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Old 10-06-2017, 11:02 AM
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Yea I have replaced a windshield in my 1966 Mailbu back when I had to repair some rust in the window channel. Never got it right but it was my first attempt at welding. Needless to say I let someone else finish the job and sold the car.

I bought one of those wire tools from autozone and got the one of the windshield up so that I could get the wire underneath and then just ripped away at it like it was a saw to remove it. Installing though I had a mobile service come out and put new seal in and windshield.

Back to the jeep....the reason I asked because I have looked several times on google and can't seem to come up with the right weatherstrip for a 1989 XJ. Wondering if something is interchangable or maybe they just don't make them or maybe it never had one to begin with and just some kind of professional sealant laid down first before windshield.

I was happy to get the roof rack as well in the deal along with the spare that I hope is full spare with wheel and in good shape. Guess it won't matter though becuase it will be a mix match unless I can find the same tires again. Also, maybe with my luck the roof rack is the best thing going for it lol. Probably worth more than what I paid for entire rig
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Old 10-06-2017, 11:05 AM
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Chili Pepper Red huh? Wonder if that is the same color then....I bet it will clean up nice once it is washed then wet sanded with compound rub I could get it to shine again. Roof I know is pretty rough looking on paint but its not rotted but some surface rust and faded/chipping so that is good.

Interior needs to be gutted so I can fix the rust on floor and the carpet is shot. Seats are in rough shape as far as some dirt and quite possibly some **** growing on them. The owner defiantly didn't take good care of it at all and it has been sitting for 3-4 months. He said it was his daily driver up to that point but I find it hard to believe anyone would drive it the way it looks on the inside.

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Old 10-06-2017, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by XJIrish4x4 View Post
Yea I have replaced a windshield in my 1966 Mailbu back when I had to repair some rust in the window channel. Never got it right but it was my first attempt at welding. Needless to say I let someone else finish the job and sold the car.

I bought one of those wire tools from autozone and got the one of the windshield up so that I could get the wire underneath and then just ripped away at it like it was a saw to remove it. Installing though I had a mobile service come out and put new seal in and windshield.

Back to the jeep....the reason I asked because I have looked several times on google and can't seem to come up with the right weatherstrip for a 1989 XJ. Wondering if something is interchangable or maybe they just don't make them or maybe it never had one to begin with and just some kind of professional sealant laid down first before windshield.

I was happy to get the roof rack as well in the deal along with the spare that I hope is full spare with wheel and in good shape. Guess it won't matter though becuase it will be a mix match unless I can find the same tires again. Also, maybe with my luck the roof rack is the best thing going for it lol. Probably worth more than what I paid for entire rig
Yeah the wires don't work, like you say they like to bite and tear the gasket. They are too small in gauge. I use a piece of right size nylon cord that is quite a bit bigger and tends to "Roll" out much better as it also pulls the gasket over the lip.

But the key is having someone on the outside gently applying pressure as you go along. But I also have an awl that I bent to 45 degrees I can slide to kind of help the cord advance along if it tries to hang up now and then.
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Old 10-06-2017, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Bugout4x4 View Post
Yeah the wires don't work, like you say they like to bite and tear the gasket. They are too small in gauge. I use a piece of right size nylon cord that is quite a bit bigger and tends to "Roll" out much better as it also pulls the gasket over the lip.

But the key is having someone on the outside gently applying pressure as you go along. But I also have an awl that I bent to 45 degrees I can slide to kind of help the cord advance along if it tries to hang up now and then.
Well that will work well as long as I can find some place to order the new parts from. Maybe my local glass repair shops will know worth a call to them when I get back. I don't think it leaks right now but if it does then I got bigger problems until I can get it fixed. Hoping someone has ideas on here where to locate seals for it sooner than later or like I said I will go with autoglass shop and ask them.
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Old 10-06-2017, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by XJIrish4x4 View Post
Chili Pepper Red huh? Wonder if that is the same color then....I bet it will clean up nice once it is washed then wet sanded with compound rub I could get it to shine again. Roof I know is pretty rough looking on paint but its not rotted but some surface rust and faded/chipping so that is good.

Interior needs to be gutted so I can fix the rust on floor and the carpet is shot. Seats are in rough shape as far as some dirt and quite possibly some **** growing on them. The owner defiantly didn't take good care of it at all and it has been sitting for 3-4 months. He said it was his daily driver up to that point but I find it hard to believe anyone would drive it the way it looks on the inside.
Someone shared a build sheet here on CF for my same year 97 model and package and it was the very same color and was listed as Chili Pepper red. Yours looks to be the very same tint of red. It almost looks like it has just a touch of orange in the direct sun. Look like it to you?


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Old 10-07-2017, 02:04 AM
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Yea those do look pretty damn close in color!! I do need to get the VIN from owner and get a build sheet on mine. Who do I see or go on the web to look at build sheets once I get the VIN? Trying to find out what gearing I have and axles hoping they are still stock of course.
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Old 10-07-2017, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by XJIrish4x4 View Post
Yea those do look pretty damn close in color!! I do need to get the VIN from owner and get a build sheet on mine. Who do I see or go on the web to look at build sheets once I get the VIN? Trying to find out what gearing I have and axles hoping they are still stock of course.
Yeah, it is a darker almost cherry red in the shade and then it lights up to a totally different much brighter slightly orange color in direct sun like mine shows there. It is weird how they could make it do that. I have had people tell me that it looks like it is flashing like a light as I drive it down the road through alternating shade and sunlight. I guess the difference is quite noticeable and catches the eye. lol

Know what? the link is here somewhere to get your build sheet, You have to contact Chrysler and they can run it off for you. I think there is a small cost to it if I remember right. I had the link somewhere in my stuff but it might take me quite awhile to find it again.

Are you sure the gear ratio is original and hasn't been changed already?

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Old 10-07-2017, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Bugout4x4 View Post
Yeah, it is a darker almost cherry red in the shade and then it lights up to a totally different much brighter slightly orange color in direct sun like mine shows there. It is weird how they could make it do that. I have had people tell me that it looks like it is flashing like a light as I drive it down the road through alternating shade and sunlight. I guess the difference is quite noticeable and catches the eye. lol

Know what? the link is here somewhere to get your build sheet, You have to contact Chrysler and they can run it off for you. I think there is a small cost to it if I remember right. I had the link somewhere in my stuff but it might take me quite awhile to find it again.

Are you sure the gear ratio is original and hasn't been changed already?
Yea the red is actually growing on me, especially since it does have tan interior. Not sure what yours is. So I will probably try to make it tan/black interior after I replace some things and possible to go with black carpet instead of the color now. I'm a little scared to say the least at what lurks in the inside of my jeep once I pick it up. Been sitting for quite sometime and the interior is just trashed. Not busted up and missing parts but dirty and mildew, etc. I have this funny feeling the guy got water in the inside at some point or it leaked and he never did anything about it so it just got nasty over time. Hopefully not though and only time will tell. It is all coming out anyhow to rebuild the floors so I'm not too concerned and I can always replace the seats with something newer. Door panels will just need to be cleaned up but other than that everything else looks intact.

If you happen to find that link just post it over here if not maybe someone else will read this and help out. I could I suppose just call Chrysler like you said and ask them. Maybe I know a friend or two who works for Chyrsler who can pull that for me free of charge.

I want to just speed up time to get home from my deployment already and get working on this jeep. Kills me sitting out here reading all this stuff everyone is doing to thiers but it is giving me something to do lol. Plus allowing me to read up on others mistakes and what I should not do to mine.
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Old 10-07-2017, 06:34 AM
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Look closely I think I got a dead spider on the back seat lol Yes, embarrased to even post this photo but I will fix it up. Again, I will just rip it all out and start from scratch if i have to from a junk yard if the seats and interior is not salvagable. Mold if it is what I think it is not going to be easy to get out.
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Old 10-07-2017, 06:50 AM
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Originally Posted by XJIrish4x4 View Post

Look closely I think I got a dead spider on the back seat lol Yes, embarrased to even post this photo but I will fix it up. Again, I will just rip it all out and start from scratch if i have to from a junk yard if the seats and interior is not salvagable. Mold if it is what I think it is not going to be easy to get out.
Is that mold or GREASE? Looks like what you have here is what was once a "Work truck". Honestly if those seats are not tore up you might be surprised how clean they come with some elbow grease and a thorough shampooing. Ours looked like that until my wife got a hold of it and she cleaned it up pretty nice. My driver's seat is ripped just a little bit and the headliner has a few nicks in it is all now. So all I need now is a set of matching recovers for the front seats and to redo the headliner and sunvisors.
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Old 10-07-2017, 06:53 AM
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I really hope it is just dirt and grease I don't mind some elbow labor getting it cleaned. If it is mold I will have bigger problems and probably something may not ever recover from. I have asked the guy and he said it was not mold so I want to take his word for it. Again, I don't normally buy things like I did here but since I'm not home and struck a sweet deal on it plus the guy was willing to hold it for me I couldn't pass. Worse case scenario I part it out and make more than my money back and buy another. Hopefully that is not the case!
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