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Old 08-28-2012, 07:45 PM   #1
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Arrow First Jeep (Want a TJ)

Hey guys, just joined the forum, and I'm really excited. I've been saving up for a new Wrangler, and I just need to find "the one."

I've been looking around in my area (Charleston) but I just can't seem to pinpoint which one is best for me.

I'm going to do trails. The more intense, the better. I hear stock wranglers are only good for baby trails, but let me know otherwise. I know how expensive upgrading can be, and I know I want lockers eventually.

I've come across a few links in my area, and I was hoping you guys that know more about them could tell me which is a better deal.

99 Jeep Wrangler - Price Reduced

1999 Jeep Wrangler

1997 Jeep Wrangler

Only things I REALLY need are a 5 speed, and I want a TJ. I'd MUCH prefer the inline 6, and as a bonus a hard top would be nice. But 5 speed TJ is most important.

Thanks guys, and I can't wait to be an official Jeep Member!

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Old 08-28-2012, 07:52 PM   #2
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Do not get the first one... if you dont know too much about fixing jeep problems. The harder the trails, the more breaks you will have and getting towed out of the middle of the woods is going to cost you big time....

I say get a stock jeep that has never been offroad and make sure that you like the hobby before you get some huge jeep on monster tires and one ton axles.

I got a jeep with the intent to try offroading in my first vehicle and liked it... therefore I am building it up the way and speed it want to, that way... when something breaks it is the second time you have spun those bolts so you know whats ahead of you.

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Old 08-28-2012, 08:09 PM   #3
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Thanks for the info Mark. I'll keep that in mind. I used to be a farmer w/ a lot of farm equipment, so I at least have the groundwork to understand how these work. I've got an engineering background, which doesn't help me, but at least I can figure out problems/fix them. So I know I can learn fast, I just hope it's fast enough.

--Mike
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Old 08-28-2012, 08:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avataranian View Post
I'm going to do trails. The more intense, the better.

and I know I want lockers eventually.

I'd MUCH prefer the inline 6
If you plan to do any serious 'wheeling, do yourself a favor: hold out until you find one with the Dana44 rear axle. Locking a Dana35 is asking for trouble, running large tires (33"+) on a Dana35 is asking for trouble, hard 'wheeling on a Dana35 is asking for trouble, and doing all three is really asking for trouble.

As an added benefit, this means it'll also have the 4.0L engine.
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Old 08-28-2012, 08:47 PM   #5
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If you want intense trails you might want an automatic.
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Old 08-28-2012, 11:16 PM   #6
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If you want intense trails you might want an automatic.
Every man is his own... Far as YOUR perfect base jeep it would be a 1997-2002 jeep wrangler sport with the optional dana 44 rear.

In 2002 they changed the AX15 trans to the NV3550 and many dont like it. If you budget allows the 2005-2006 have a 6 speed NSG370.

The dana 35 is not recommended for anything bigger than 31s in my opinion. If it is a killer deal on the jeep, you could always buy a seperate one or get a ford 8.8 rear from eastcoastgearsupply.com on the cheap or from a junkyard on the cheap if you have the tools/skills to weld on brackets. This will be stronger that the dana 44 too!

Jeep rubicons are going to cost you a little more but come with dana 44s front and rear and they are both locked from the factory, along with 4.11 gears to allow you to run 33s without regearing.
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Old 08-29-2012, 10:29 AM   #7
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Thanks for the info guys. I found this one, I know it has a lot of miles, but for 5 grand...do you think it's worth it? I'm sure there will be a couple problems but I don't mind fixing it myself, would be fun anyway.

1998 Jeep Wrangler TJ 6 cyl
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Old 08-29-2012, 10:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avataranian
Thanks for the info guys. I found this one, I know it has a lot of miles, but for 5 grand...do you think it's worth it? I'm sure there will be a couple problems but I don't mind fixing it myself, would be fun anyway.

1998 Jeep Wrangler TJ 6 cyl
The price seems reasonable, but I would be very cautious about rust. From the picture and description I saw some good rot under the drivers door. A more in depth description would help too like what tires, gears, axles and ect it has. It also looks like it has an after market center counsel if it means anything to you.
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:04 PM   #9
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He says the only rust is on that rocker. I'm worried about the milage on it though, is 160k a lot? I know those inline 6's go forever, but I wasn't sure about the tranny/misc.

Mike
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avataranian
He says the only rust is on that rocker. I'm worried about the milage on it though, is 160k a lot? I know those inline 6's go forever, but I wasn't sure about the tranny/misc.

Mike
160 would be a little over my comfort zone, but it is certainly still feasible. I can't imagine that rust could only be on a rocker and door without starting in the more common areas like frame, skid plates and exhaust. The ax-15 is certainly one of the better trannys put in a tj, but that doesn't mean its bullet proof. If your really interested I would arrange a time to take a look at it and go through the motions of checking known mechanical and electric issues.
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:46 PM   #11
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Jeep engines last forever. I've got 335k on mine. What you want to do us get under the jeep and look for rust. Lift the carpets up in the front and look for rust. Ask about engine problems, what oil he uses, the transmission, if he has ever changed the fluid (auto) or oil(manual) ever been off road? Look for after market parts. Check brake shoes, uneven tire wear. All of these things affect the price.
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Old 08-29-2012, 12:47 PM   #12
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Look go exhaust leaks, oily residue on the bottom of the engine. Power steering leaks(look at the bottom of the box an see if it's wet.) look for differential leaks, excessive play in the u joints. Engine ticks?
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Old 08-29-2012, 03:45 PM   #13
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I went and looked at it today. There is no rust on anything underneath except for that spot (weird, but I looked hard). Engine sounds fine, no ticks. Shifted fine. Needs a new A/C compressor (but at least it has A/C). Tires were a little more worn on the right side (you can see it in the picture if you look hard, too) and it seemed to "lean" that way. I couldn't figure out why--is it just a shock, or is this something more serious?
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Old 08-29-2012, 05:40 PM   #14
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Not sure how much you want to spend but I have a jeep for sale and I gurantee it will be hard to find one that is as trail ready and RC capable as this one.. I just think it needs to go to someone who can use it for what it is..

2000 TJ Chilli Pepper Edition - JeepForum.com

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