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Project Jackalope

Old 04-01-2016, 06:19 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Mid-Atlantic
Posts: 3
Year: 2001
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 6-Cyl, 4.0 Liter
Default Project Jackalope

I've had my XJ for almost 7 years now. After looking for a replacement bumper, I caught the Jeep bug and started planning my build. I want a capable, reliable vehicle and I would love to get into overland camping.

My '01 may or may not be completely stock. It looks a little taller than some I see, but I don't think I have a lift. It has 145,000 miles on it as of this post.

I'm still learning a lot, so I will be grateful for all comments and advice.

Bought August 2009. About 84,000 miles.

This is how he sits today.

List of things I want to add:


-Angry Sparrows
-front u-joints
-centerball mount/driveshaft
-Transmission Fluid change

-Sub/Amp Install
-Rear Bumper
-Fix Rust Spots
-Throttle Body clean
-Sea foam/deep creep

-Rusty's Transfer Case Skid Plate
-Throttle body spacer
-Check for cracked head
-Water Pump
-Thermostat check
-Radiator Flush
-Distributor cap
-Throttle Body
-motor mounts?

-Smoked Out Signals

Overland Mods

-Air Compressor
-Fire Extinguisher + Mount

-Rock Rails
-Front Bumper + Bull Bar
-Offroad Lights
-Flat Fenders

-Rooftop Tent (Maggiolana)
-Road Shower/water system
-1200W? (300/1000WBestec) Power Inverter
-Battery Cables
heavy duty military terminals, 1/0awg cable (
-Dual Battery
-CB or HAM radio
-Mounts and Antenna
-False floor sliding cabinets for trunk
-Stovetop on one side
-Rear Tire Carrier
-Yellow D-Rings
-Jerry Cans/Rotopax
-MOLLE Cargo seat covers

I know a lot of these things are cosmetic. I'm still doing research for things like axles, steering, and tires. I know I don't want a big lift or any drastic re-gearing any time soon.

Last edited by ErnShmly; 04-01-2016 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 04-01-2016, 06:34 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Mid-Atlantic
Posts: 3
Year: 2001
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 6-Cyl, 4.0 Liter

I am not a mechanic. I am trying to learn, but with my work schedule, lack of tools and lack of know-how it is very difficult. This forum has been really helpful! I have also had a couple bad experiences that turned me off of car repair for a while.

I first learned about my transfer case in 2010 when it shattered on the highway hour 15/16 of a road trip home. A nice mechanic in nowhere Nebraska disconnected my drive shaft and I 2WDrove it back home.

I have just recently replaced that transfer case with a new one this last month in 2016. I now know that I have a Jasper's NP231. I think I'm currently chasing a case of the angry sparrows so I have replaced all the front u-joints and driveshaft. Hopefully that does the trick because I've been to three places in town trying to fix it. The first place replaced the driver side joint for about $200 including labor. The second place, a dealership, said I needed a new transfer case ($1700 installed) and that's why it was chirping. Their quote was a bit high for me so I went to the third place that was recommended by a friend at work. They replaced the transfer case, but I still had a chirp. I took it back two more times, the first time they found some loose bolts they forgot to tighten and the second time they replaced the front u-joints and driveshaft because I asked them to. They said everything looked "fine," but I want to be thorough. I haven't been nearly as diligent as I should have been these past few years and I owe the Jeep a little TLC.

Other minor fixes I/my various repair guys have had to make over the years are:
-Speakers going out/replacing speaker wires
-Rear wiper motor
-Battery replacement
-Hydraulic lift gates in the trunk snapping off (Minnesota winter)
-Heat going out/thermostat replacement
-All power windows except the driver's working
-Driver side window staying stuck open (not fun in the rain)
-differential leak (not sure which, I didn't know anything about them then. Definitely due for a fluid change)
-I'm also pretty sure the fuel filter got replaced, but I can't remember how long ago

I have personally made very few additions. I painted the wheels, runners, and end caps with PlastiDip almost 5 years ago and the wheels have held up. The other trim I have touched up twice (and it looks due for another). I also did the "Jeep" and "4x4" emblems so they stand out more.
I have an upgraded stereo/subs. Added a tow bar, and a friend's dad hooked me up with some light wiring to pull a small trailer. Also, stickers.

I also changed the rubber stoppers for the lift gate. My first personal "repair."

It's the little things.
I'm looking forward to starting more advanced things.

Last edited by ErnShmly; 04-01-2016 at 07:23 PM. Reason: Added repair history.
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Old 04-01-2016, 06:43 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: Mid-Atlantic
Posts: 3
Year: 2001
Model: Cherokee
Engine: 6-Cyl, 4.0 Liter

In 2010 a friend of a friend helped me install subs in the trunk.

I have two 10" Alpines in a ported box and an Audiobahn A800sT amp (Crutchfield Specs: amp subs).

Unfortunately, I didn't record any of the installation or know really anything about them at the time. I am planning a stealthbox upgrade from I'll be putting in a JL Audio 10TW1 subwoofer and a JL Audio HX300 amp. Hopefully an installation post will follow soon.

I decided to upgrade my sound system mostly because I'm more comfortable with that than mechanical repairs. My current setup is failing so the timing just worked out. I also want more space in the trunk. I've been looking at rear tire carriers because I like how they look and I could use the extra space. The cost is high, so I'm waiting to see if I'll be happy with the trunk space once my box is gone and the stealth is installed. I might just keep the spare inside since it is so much cheaper.

I'm considering the Smittybilt tire carrier.

Last edited by ErnShmly; 04-01-2016 at 07:19 PM.
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Old 04-01-2016, 10:59 PM
Junior Member
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 39
Model: Cherokee

That is my favorite color, enjoy your build I will keep peeking in.
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