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Old 07-03-2008, 08:46 AM   #1
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Advise for a Nubie!

I am a prospective buyer of a Jeep Wrangler mostly for off-road purposes but also to drive as a second vehicle, especially in the snow. Would like some advice from a seasoned Jeep Wrangler (CJ,etc) owner on what to look for given my needs. Would like to purchase an older Jeep ($3000-$5000 price range) with the intend of doing my own upgrades (motor-lift-tires) as necessary.

What year do you recommend for the price range and intended use?

Any cautions for a inexperienced Jeep buyer?


Anyother information would be greatly appreciated..

Thanks in advance.

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Old 07-03-2008, 10:03 AM   #2
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Two things I found the most while hunting for mine were rust and hack jobs by amateur wannabe mechanics. Found many a Jeep that someone had painted over rust. I also drove several that you couldn't hold in one lane at 50 mph. Then there's always the wires hanging everwhere junk.

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Old 07-03-2008, 10:54 AM   #3
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for that price id look for a later year YJ (square headlights) up to a 95, id get the later years to get the fuel injection and not the carb, that'll be GREAT for what u want, cheap solid and a great platform, first mod should be switching in some round headlights though haha
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Old 07-03-2008, 01:22 PM   #4
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Get a 91(fuel injection) or newer with a 6 cylinder. Auto or stick either one is fine. Till 97 they all had leaf springs and coil springs after. With pre-97'd known as YJ's they tend to rust out sooner than the TJ's, check rockers etc. Rear main seal leaks with higher miles is usually, But engines can last for over 200k. Trannys seem to go before that however. Parts are easy to come by. Some TJs came with the dana 44 rear axle, metal drain plug, if you can find one buy it vs the dana 35 ( which came in all YJ's) Like any other used truck, check it out before you buy. Hope that helps a bit.
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Old 07-03-2008, 01:32 PM   #5
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Hell depending on what part of the country you live in you might be able to find a 97 or 98 in that price range. I don't disagree with the boys on the older 91 to 95's though, you can't go wrong with them either. Just stay away from the 87 and 88's, I believe that is the 2 years they had a completely STUPID manual in them know as the Peugot.
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Old 07-04-2008, 07:37 AM   #6
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Thanks fells

Thank you to those who have already posted replys - they'll help alot.
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Old 07-04-2008, 07:47 AM   #7
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a yj is gonna be perfect for ya. like already said 91-95, and i'd suggest skipping the 4 bangers and go right to 4.0. some people think they'll switch it out later, which is fine, but it is more work and money than buying the six right away, its a great motor, and plenty of power.

yj checklist:
floorboards for rust
rocker panels inside for rust
windshield frame for rust-easily replacable, but costs money
frame for rot, especially rear of frame
body mounts
diamond plate hides sins
4x4 working, usually easy fix if it isn't
make sure tailgate isn't falling off
check hard tops for cracks and lift gate operation, and check soft tops for rips, and how the zippers and bars are working

finding one unmolested is best, people do weird things to jeeps. yj's with body lifts are gonna have weaker tubs usually with age.

you're price range is perfect to find a yj in good shape, enjoy.

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