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The Widder my 96XJ

Old 07-29-2012, 09:03 PM
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Default The Widder my 96XJ

Alrighty, this is the beginning of my build thread, which is appropriate cuz I am basically at the beginning of my build. lol

A little intro and background on how I got here and into this project...

....I have been bascially driving the same car for the last 11 years. It has been a great and reliable little car, but it's exactly that, a little car. I have gotten a lot of miles from my 89 toyota corolla but by now it needs engine work (I am told rings are bad) and transmission work (not sure exactly what problem is), probably wouldn't mind a new carb and I think the metal chunks coming out of exhaust are pieces of my catalytic converter breaking apart. I guess my point is its been a great car, but not really worth fixing, but I'll keep her till the wheels fall off lol. She's not real fast, but she still gets me from point A to B so I can't complain.

I have decided that I need to get another vehicle to replace Myrtle (the corolla) and because of some recent things going on in my life I can't really take on a car payment and I don't have anyone that can work on a used car so I talked to some friends and decided I'd like something that will handle snow well and that I can work on myself when needed.

I will be honest, before buying my Jeeps I have not done any mechanic work on my car before, I always had my boyfriend do work or I took it to a shop to work on it. Since I have recently become single I obviously don't have a man to work on my vehicle and I can't afford to pay a shop to work on it cuz I am really working toward eliminating my debt. After talking to my boss about his Jeep some and hearing about all the stuff he was doing to his, I figured maybe can get a Jeep, it will do great in snow and there are a ton on the road and I am told they are pretty easy to work on.

So I checked out Craigslist and found one for $1000 that ran and had pretty decent tires for being a stock ride and had a friend look at it with me and basically rushed into buying my Green Jeep, a 96XJ. I had to borrow money from my mom to get her but my mom is helpful. When I got my Jeep home I really loved driving it. I didn't really see what the big deal was about Jeeps, but now after driving mine I love it. I even find that my driving is different when I am in the Jeep and it's fun to drive.

First thing I had to do to the Green one was replace a O2 sensor so I could get it to pass Emissions test. Good news is I still had a couple months on the inspection before I had to worry about anything major.
I had to get a tiny bit of help for the O2 sensor, there is a lot of rust under my Jeep so I needed help getting the old senor out but I put the new one in on my own.

Oh and this Jeep had like 282k miles on it, but I was told by PO that the engine and transmission had been rebuilt at about 230k. Since I didn't have much info history other than that I figured it couldn't hurt to put a new air cleaner and new spark plugs in it. I was kinda proud of myself for getting the plugs swappad and having done the O2 sensor before.

Oh and when I first got it one of the door pull (the handle on the inside) fell off and I took one from back door to front, then like 2 weeks later the driverside handle broke too lol. The back hatch didnt' stay open so I put new lift shocks on it. I had to reglue the rearview mirror back on when I bought it and the driverside mirror was broken so I got a large blindspot mirror to replace mirror. lol.

After all those little things getting fixed I dropped it off at my mechanics shop so he could give it a good look over so I can prepare for what else will be needed. I knew it would need a bunch of stuff, but I just wanted to make sure it was safe to drive and all that. Well He looked it over and explained to me about the uniframe and that the rust on it was so severe he couldn't pass it for safety inspection when the time came and he reccomended that I dont' drive it without getting it fixed.

I started to get bummed cuz I just sunk a grand I didn't have into an unsafe vehicle, but I got to talking to a guy at work who said he had a black 96XJ that he threw a rod in it and could sell it to me as a "parts jeep" lol

I managed to get that one for $400 and now I plan to take the motor from the Green one and put it in the Black one that has the better body. Both Jeeps are 1996 automatic transmission with a straight 6. I don't really know any of the other specs yet, as I am still learning all about it. I will get pics up in this thread soon, I have pics of them in my albums if you want to check them out.
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Old 07-29-2012, 09:15 PM
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Default Why The Widder

So I was able to get a friend to tow the Jeep with the bad engine and good body(I hope she doesn't mind I only want her for her body lol) to my house for next to nothing. Since she had been sitting for like 3-4 years she was pretty dirty so I washed her up and got her all shiny and sexy looking. When I bought and picked her up I was more concerned with the interior and the body I never checked under the hood. I figured that since the first one I bought ran great, then I can just swap any other parts needed.

After getting her all cleaned up I went to go open the hood and it was stuck, the pull handle wouldn't even move. ugh! After I emptied like half a can of PB Blaster under the hood I triumphantly got it to open (only now I think it may be stuck open lol-that will work for now) I was so proud of myself for getting it open on my own without breaking the handle.

Anyways so when I got the hood open (and after I was done cheering and jumping up and down in celebration in my driveway) I noticed a large spider web and a big old Black Widow under the hood. Since the Jeep with the spider is black I figured she should be called the Black Widow. My friend said that Black Widow is too long of a name and suggested that I should call her the Widder for short, so I decided to go with that.
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Old 07-31-2012, 06:47 PM
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Alright yesterday I got my engine hoist, hooray!

Today I got my shop all cleaned up and made space to fit my Jeeps in there. Now I just gotta get the black one in The garage and I can start working.
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Old 08-19-2012, 08:58 AM
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I haven't gotten a thing done on my Jeep yet. Still looking for a couple ppl to help me get it in the garage and I also don't want to do anything big to it till i can get the title from the PO. I guess he never titled it after paying it off so he has to wait to hear back from his finance co to get the title info. Grr! I really want to start working on her so I can drive her.
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Old 08-19-2012, 10:17 AM
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Sounds like you have a great plan and build started. Jeep's are some of the most fun and easier vehicles to work on.

I know i came into my "Baconator" with no knowledge just YouTube and Cherokee forums and yet i feel like everything I've done was easy.

Keep up the good work and I look forward to seeing some photos and to see the work in progress photos!
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:13 AM
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Let's see her man!
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:38 PM
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This is my green Jeep the day I bought it. This one has severe body damage that I cannot fix at this time but she runs great.
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:45 PM
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When i first got the green one I needed to replace the O2 sensor (old one with busted wires in top pic, new one I put in all by myself... well mostly) and the rear lift gate shocks were broken.

I had to get a friend to loosen the old O2 sensor, but I put the new one in. and I also put new plugs and air cleaner after I got her too. I was gonna do an oil change, but I reckon I will kinda get to that when I pull the motor lol. And the last thing I did to this one was fix the lift shocks.

Oh and I also fixed the door handles, the ones you use to pull door shut broke, both of the front ones came off, so I took the ones from the back and put on the front.
Attached Thumbnails The Widder my 96XJ-green-jeep-old-o2-sensor.jpg   The Widder my 96XJ-green-jeep-new-o2-sensor.jpg   The Widder my 96XJ-lift-gate-fixed.jpg  
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:53 PM
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This is my black Jeep, aka the Widder.

It had been sitting for like 3-4 years before I got some friends to tow it back to my house for me. Got her home cleaned her up and she looks pretty good for how long she was sitting. Only has a some oxidation on the hood, a tiny bit on top of front fender and a little on the roof above the windsheild.
Attached Thumbnails The Widder my 96XJ-black-jeep-dirty-driver-side.jpg   The Widder my 96XJ-black-jeep-clean.jpg   The Widder my 96XJ-black-jeep-hood.jpg  
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:56 PM
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Right after I got her all cleaned up I wanted to check out under the hood and realized the hood was stuck shut so my first task was to get the hood latch to release. I literally jump up and down cheering when i got it open without breaking the cable. I think that I may have to rob the cable or the latch from the green one and put on the Widder. Not totally sure yet.
Attached Thumbnails The Widder my 96XJ-black-jeep-hood-open.jpg  
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Old 08-19-2012, 04:57 PM
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After I got the hood open I was looking around underneath and found a little friend, which is why I call her the Widder. I may think of another name for her, but for now she is the Widder.
Attached Thumbnails The Widder my 96XJ-black-widow.jpg  
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Old 08-19-2012, 05:00 PM
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Oh yeah and the Widder has a nice hole in the bottom of the motor, so I will be taking the green ones motor and putting it in the Widder.
Attached Thumbnails The Widder my 96XJ-black-jeep-engine-damage.jpg  
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Old 09-02-2012, 10:54 AM
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Well damn. I still don't have a title to this thing. Its starting to look like I may not be able to get a title to be able to register it. I really hope I don't have to part it out. Grr!
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Old 08-17-2013, 03:54 PM
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Being as I can't seem to get a title for this one it has become my parts jeep. So far I have robbed it of the following:

TPS
CPS
Distributor cap
Heater hose
Bolt that hold transfer case to the cross member underneath
Electric fan relay

For now I will probably use this thread to keep track of what I have taken off this jeep
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