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KJWildman's XJ Build

Old 08-18-2012, 02:45 AM
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Year: 1991
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 4.0
Default KJWildman's XJ Build "The Deerslayer"

I bought my XJ last fall with the thought of it just being a winter beater while my real project takes shape. A 302 SBF stroked out to 352, manual bodied C4 and BW1354 going in to a (gulp) IFS KJ with 6" of lift on 33's. I know, I know, haters abound!!
But anyway for the rest of you my XJ has turned in to more of a DD/Project than I thought.
It started as just a normally rusted XJ with a 4.0 that had 250k on the clock for me to drive back and forth to work. It had an unknown brand 4" lift, Bushwacker flares, steel bumpers with no recovery points and some bucket seats off ebay (I think) and sat on 32" Cooper STT's wrapped around M/T rims.
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I did the usual checking it all over and changed all the fluids, put new plugs, wires and cap on. Ran all the breathers up out of harms way and greased all the fittings since it looked like they hadn't been hit in a WHILE! The changed tie rod ends.
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Soon I decided that I couldn't wheel without recovery points so I bought some tabs from Rusty's and welded them on.
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After a couple trips to Bundy Hill Off Road Park I couldn't just do nothing so I bent and welded a stinger on the front bumper.
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After that came a couple cans of rattle can gloss black on the front fenders and hood since they had been changed and never painted. At the same time I got a couple cans of Hammered black and gave the front bumper and grill a coat with those.
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Next came a couple cheap Harbor Freight driving lights for the front bumper.
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Well that's where it stayed until last week!!

Last edited by KJWildman; 08-09-2013 at 10:16 AM.
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Old 08-18-2012, 03:12 AM
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Year: 1991
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Default And then it happened!

So anyway, last week ....... I hit a deer on a back county road doing like 65 about a mile from my house on the way home from work at 1AM! The deer went under the Jeep, caught in the driver's side suspension/tire and just PULLED me off the left side of the road before I could react. When I did react and stomp the brake pedal I was already starting to head off across a small culvert in someone's front yard. I'll tell you, locked up tires sliding on grass don't slow you down very much! I slid across the grass through a bush, across a gravel driveway, over a 2' pile of concrete rubble, through a split rail fence and into and over a 12' tall juniper tree/bush thing! You can see the rubble and parts of the fence and the tree I knocked down. Yes, I took that thing out right by the root ball and all!
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I went (sliding out of control mind you) right between a cut off phone pole on the left that he was using for a fence post and a phone/power pole in use on the right! My right side fender flares rubbed on the pole on the right and there was about 8" between the Jeep and the fence post on the left!!
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As far as damage ....... bent the hell out of the front bumper and stinger. Stood the stinger straight up and down! pushed the bumper up under the grill, bent the tie rod, track bar, pass. side control arm, pushed the pass side swaybar disco into the spring and just bent the hell outta the steering stabilizer. But no real body damage!
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I'm guessing I was probably still doing about 50 when I hit the fence and tree!
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Old 08-18-2012, 03:28 AM
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Default And so it begins!!

And so it begins! The insurance guy came by and threatened to total it until I told him I was doing all the work myself. Once he walked around and started assessing damage he decided that he would go ahead and cover the damage for me. He added it up and wrote me a check!!

It didn't take me very long to start ordering the parts to repair it. We can fix this ....... and make it better!!!!!
So in the next 2-3 weeks I have more parts coming. A 1-1/4" dia. x .25 tie rod actually arrived today and I almost stumbled over it on the way in the house tonight. Also on the way is an Iron Rock Off Road 4.5" Long Arm kit and a JKS adjustable trackbar. I also had enough to get ordered a new bumper. I found Down N Dirty Offroad in Reading, PA online and they have a special going now. I got a front winch bumper with stinger and recovery tabs, a rear bumper with hitch, recovery tabs and a swingaway tire carrier capable of holding up to a 37" tire for $500. The LA kit is supposed to ship on the 24th and the bumpers a couple days later. I should be back on the road and back wheelin' within just 3 weeks or so!! I'll post up more as the parts come in and then when I do the install!
I also have a couple 60" pieces of 3"x3"x.185 wall square tube that I'm going to replace those rusted out rockers with!
Not bad for a winter beater!
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Old 08-09-2013, 10:15 AM
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Default Update

Okay ..... it's been a year since I posted this, I guess I could update it!!
So in the last year:
The Iron Rock Off Road 4" long arm kit was installed. Along with a JKS adjustable track bar and Skyjacker 1-1/4" tie rod. Then I decided that I needed new tires so went with 33" Wild Country MTX tires on my Mickey Thompson rims. Added new front and rear bumpers from Down 'n Dirty Off Road out of Pennsylvania. The front is a winch bumper with shackle tabs and hoop and the rear has a receiver hitch, shackle tabs and swing away tire carrier. Did a rear seat delete. Added some cheap long range lights to the front bumper and ran those for a while. I now have some Warn fogs mounted on the bumper and moved the driving lights to the A-Pillar mounted on Detours USA A-Pillar mounts. Changed out the front hubs to SKF units, changed the front brake pads.
This weekend I am installing Rock Lizard Fabrications rear quarter guards and the steering box frame support/stiffeners. Also have most of the parts for the '98ZJ Disc conversion for the rear D35.
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:25 PM
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Down 'n Dirty Off Road front bumper installed
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:39 PM
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Looks great Buddy
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:49 PM
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New tires
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:51 PM
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Rear bumper
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:52 PM
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looking good
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Old 08-18-2013, 08:57 PM
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Detours USA A-Pillar light mount
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:02 PM
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Iron Rock Off Road suspension being installed, IRO xmember and skyjacker tie rod, JKS trackbar and dual Rough Country steering stabilizer
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Old 08-18-2013, 09:08 PM
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Now for what I think is my best mod, the LED headlights!
The first pic is the stock headlights, the second is the LEDs, then a couple close shots of them installed
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Old 08-18-2013, 10:38 PM
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I'd love some details on those headlights! They look badass!
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Old 08-18-2013, 11:57 PM
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me too
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Old 08-19-2013, 12:11 AM
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Me 3
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