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Old 01-09-2013, 03:42 PM   #1
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Look what I got for $1k :)

So we bought this 95 4 cylinder for $1000. It was sold as supposedly running before it sat for 2 years, and the frame is pretty beat, 150k miles. But it came with a set of new 31 inch firestone m/t's... can't pass that up. It doesn't have any lift. We figure, worst case scenario we sell the tires and junk it and pretty much break even, a no risk investment, only fun and experience can result

First things first, drain the crap from the fuel tank that is called "gas". Fill it up with new gas... it starts! It drives for a day and then flakey fuel pressure. Break lines also fail. Replace the break lines, fuel pump, and throw a used skid plate on and it's golden, almost. When the fuel pump was dying a backfire wrecked the manifold so it's pretty loud now. I can smell a very slight smell of gas and the engine stutters once in a while, but I can't find a leak in the line. Either it's a very small leak or it's somewhere else. Getting proper mpg so it's not losing much fuel, just gotta find it. Not too bad for a $1k toy.

We're going to run it through the winter and see how it holds up. If it makes it until spring, I have another wrangler with a pristine body and a blown engine. We'll swap the body and add a lift, and maybe bigger tires. So here's a couple questions for you jeep veterans out there...

I know nothing about jeeps, just general car maintenance. I can take things off and put things on, troubleshoot, and I have access to a lift (thanks to gf's dad). If it makes it through the winter and I do the swap, I'd like to add a lift. I started reading and it's overwhelming. I have until spring to figure it out though. I'm looking for a low budget lift with very little modifications since I'll be doing this myself. I'd like atleast 33" tires, 35" if I can. I'm not sure how big I can go without changing axels and possibly driveshaft or whatever else. I'm also guessing I'll want to use a/t tires because we get a lot of snow in upstate new york, and the m/t's might not be that good. I just don't know how well the a/t's will do offroad.

It'll be mostly offroad and snow, maybe a little joy riding with the top off in the summer on pavement. I used to drive scrapers in the army so I'm used to horrible road handling, so I'm not really concerned about a rough pavement ride.

So any advice would be appreciated, I came to this forum because that's where all of my google searches end up, so it must be good right?


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Old 01-09-2013, 03:51 PM   #2
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looks like a score for a grand, even if it doesnt run. congrats!

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Old 01-09-2013, 03:59 PM   #3
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Thanks, that's what we figured, since we could make most of our money back if it was junk. The fact that it just needed a fuel pump to run was a bonus. I can't believe it sat for so long and now I'm driving it around all week almost flawlessly. You'd think it was a honda with resilience like that
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:05 PM   #4
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thats a great start man but it will never end haha welcome and good luck were u active or reserve??? if u dont mind me asking..
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93 yj 2.5 low output 4.5" lift, 33's, 4.88 gears, tube fenders, and some other stuff

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Old 01-09-2013, 04:10 PM   #5
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The 2.5l is gutless but you can put th ose little engines through hell and back and they'll keep tugging along.

33's with 4.56 or 4.88:1 is pretty much pushing the limits of your rear axle.

Most around here swap in ford 8.8 axles from explorers 96 and up (disk brakes)

As far as lift. There are plenty of options as you stated.

If you can weld and fab up I would suggest a Spring Over Axle lift. (There is a step by step sticky at the top of this section)

Going higher than 2" lift and you'll want either a T-Case drop or SYE (search jeep yj sye and you'll see what they are)

There is also a thread on wagoneer lifts floating around here. Look into that for budget lifts.

Wouldn't go more than 1 or 1.25 on shackle lifting.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:13 PM   #6
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Reserve, I only had to go overseas for OIF once luckily. I know it'll never end, I have too many hobbies that pretty much become jobs lol. With this hobby I hope to just achieve a basic, budget lift with the biggest tires I can get for some casual offroading and leave it at that. Well I hope to stop there anyway, I know how these things tend to snowball.

So any pointers on a budget lift, and what tire sizes I can go to without major modifications? I have plenty of time until spring to do a lot of reading, just need somewhere to start.
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:20 PM   #7
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@ Speedy4x4 sorry you posted before I finished, thanks for the advice. So I guess I'll stop at 33's if you don't think that's pushing it too much. If I break my rear axle I guess I'll just upgrade it then. I'll look into the lift options. I don't want to invest too much into it because honestly, it's a beater.

I have to work, I'll check back later.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:25 PM   #8
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Is it just me, or does it look to already be lifted a little? Every other stock YJ I've seen that had 31s had practically no clearance. The tires were stuffed in there. That one looks like it has a little room.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:28 PM   #9
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youve got a point there
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:44 PM   #10
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What part of NY are you in? Is it a hurricane "Sandy" Car? sure hope not..

My 95 2.5l had a gas leak towards the rear portion of the line up where they turn from the frame and head towards the tank, not a bad leak just smelled when running a bit, more of an ooze than anything else, a little bit of rubber gasline and some hose clamps can fix that, I also have 31" m/t's

back when I first rescued it there were the similar holes in the body usad some gorilla glue duct tape to fill the void untill welding in new metal,
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:36 PM   #11
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Nice jeep for $1k. Also in upstate NY. love the winters. How is your frame. had to fix a few spots on mine. Salt is a killer. Enjoy the yj.
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:56 PM   #12
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i belive it does have a small lift, look at the springs they sure look curved up a bit more than stock..

as for ride, i have a cheap 4 inch rough country suspension lift running 33s and i removed my track bars and my front sway bar( im off road ALOT)...it handles great on and off road i have never had handleing problems even when i had to swerve hard to keep from tboneing a texting driver...i actually would rather drive it than anything in our fleet of vehicles..
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:53 PM   #13
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Since it already has some clearance, I would just throw on some tube fenders and run 33s, if that's all the bigger you want to go. I ran about that much lift with 33s, and did just fine. A good low center of gravity set-up.
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:03 PM   #14
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I concur. It does look lifted a little. Mine sits about like that and its got 3.5 inch springs and 31's.
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:47 PM   #15
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Mine looked like that with my homemade add-a-leaf and 1" body lift. I'm guessing it was about 2.5". If the OP would like to see a pic of it with that lift, tube fenders and 33s, I can find one and post it up.
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:05 AM   #16
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Lot of replies While I was at work

@DILLIGAF, I'm in albany county. I actually bought it about a year ago, started cutting out some of the rotted frame, and had to get surgery on my ankle. So it sat for another year at my gf's dad's garage, and now I'm finally getting to it. I have since fallen into a free wrangler body in perfect shape and am thinking it would be better to swap the body.

@ bigbuckd, body is pretty shot, worse than when I started fixing it a year ago. I have 2 months until next inspection and it probably won't make it. For example, my gf climbed into it, and her foot went through the floor :0 wasn't like that last year lol. I screwed in a steel plate for the time being until we swap the body. Good news is the work on the frame I did before the surgery held up and looks safe (according to a mechanic, not me), it's everything else that rotted.

@ "everyone that said it looks like it already has a lift", this didn't occur to me. I have always fixed cars, the underneath of this thing is alien to me. How would I tell what it has? Since I'm going to be swapping the body I figured I would just install a new lift.

@ YJ fanatic, I wouldn't mind a pic to compare.

Thanks for all of the responses. I'm going to have it on the lift again tomorrow to fix the 4wd shifter and grease it up, so I can take so pics while I'm at it. Got it stuck in 4wd and broke it trying to get it loose. Oh well that's what the second jeep is for

Btw, the second free jeep with the good body came from my gf's dad. He was starting a project also, but due to back surgery he won't be able to drive a jeep anymore, so it was donated to our project.
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:29 AM   #17
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I would like be rude for a second and double post :P

I've been searching and reading quite a bit, then going to work, then working on the jeep. On some other forums people are quite arrogant, especially toward people who don't have much money to spend on their jeep hobby. I would like to thank everyone for being so friendly on my budget beater project that may not even last a full year, it's all in fun. I also see that it's very common in these different jeep forums for noobs to say things like "what's the cheapest lift and how big of tires can I use", with emphasis on "cheapest".

Now I'm not saying I'm not a noob, and I'm also not saying I'm not looking for the cheapest possible solution. These are true. I am literally trying to get the cheapest lift for 33 inch tires... on a a vehicle that I bought that I was NOT SURE i could even get running (figuring I could get most of my money back).

So thanks again for giving me direction on the cheapest car I ever bought without telling me I need to spend 3000 dollars or else I'm an idiot, I'm glad I picked this forum after further reading.
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:18 PM   #18
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The top pic is with 31s and a 2.5" lift. As you can see, it has about as much clearance as yours. The second pic is the 2.5" lift, 33s and tube fenders. Had about 7" of clearance, which was more than enough. Sadly, that's my only pic of this setup, because the next day, I hit a ditch and snapped my front springs. But then I moved up to a 4" lift.

Attachment 196526



Attachment 196527
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:22 PM   #19
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Actually, found another pic. This is when it was in that ditch. It'll give you an idea on how much clearance it had. And yeah, the front tire is pushed back into the wheel well, you would have more clearance than that.

Attachment 196529
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:06 PM   #20
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Yes, it's lifted. Stock springs are nearly flat from the factory. I'd guess a 3" lift.
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Old 01-10-2013, 04:32 PM   #21
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By the look of YJ fanatic's yj, I'm going to have to agree, it has to have atleast a 2 inch lift. I didn't get a chance to get it on the lift today, I got sidetracked by buying a 95 camry with 100k miles and no rust... for $1500.

The deals just keep getting thrown at me these days, I can't resist. Got a new commuter car so I can finally sell my old 92 accord with 280k miles.
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:28 PM   #22
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Im doing a quick look at the forum,dont have time to go back and look the specs up.Would someone give him the ground to bottom of rocker measurement to see how much lift he has, I think with stock tires its 18" that will help alot. Thanks for helping.Wife is calling to go outLOL
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:51 PM   #23
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That would be helpful, I would just have to drive it off of the snow bank first to measure

I won't have it on the lift until next week because the garage is busy. But I can peek under it while it's in the driveway. What should I be looking for? There is a warning sticker near the glove box with the brand name "sky jacker" I think it's called, if that helps.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:08 PM   #24
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Wow....the fellow NYer's ARE alive.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:10 PM   #25
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Nice score. I just bought a black 95 4 cylinder for 2000 and I thought I got a grey deal.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:37 PM   #26
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That's still a good deal if it runs and has very little problems. I took a small gamble and was kind of expecting it not to run so I wouldn't get my hopes up. A new fuel pump was a lucky shot really.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:43 PM   #27
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"Skyjacker" yep its got a lift kit in it.
2"-3" I'd say.

You should be able to fit 33's with either a 1" Body Lift or 1" lift shackles. (Both cost the about the same)

That would be way cheeper than buying taller lift springs.

Or you could look into getting a set of TJ flares and open up your wheel wells a bit and you might sqeeze them in without going higher. Might need longer bump stops
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:57 PM   #28
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Ok so I'm going to drive it through the winter to make sure there aren't any "hidden" problems before I invest all of this time into it. After winter I'm going to put the rust free body on it and add a bigger lift, probably a combination of body and suspension so I can get bigger tires on it. That will give me plenty of time to read into regearing it myself, because it looks like it'll be more than this thing is worth to pay someone else to do it. I'll revive this thread with pics and questions when I'm ready to start pulling it apart, thanks for the guidance everyone
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Old 01-12-2013, 09:52 AM   #29
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good luck and enjoy.
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Old 05-14-2013, 04:08 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by megamike View Post
I would like be rude for a second and double post :P

I've been searching and reading quite a bit, then going to work, then working on the jeep. On some other forums people are quite arrogant, especially toward people who don't have much money to spend on their jeep hobby. I would like to thank everyone for being so friendly on my budget beater project that may not even last a full year, it's all in fun. I also see that it's very common in these different jeep forums for noobs to say things like "what's the cheapest lift and how big of tires can I use", with emphasis on "cheapest".

Now I'm not saying I'm not a noob, and I'm also not saying I'm not looking for the cheapest possible solution. These are true. I am literally trying to get the cheapest lift for 33 inch tires... on a a vehicle that I bought that I was NOT SURE i could even get running (figuring I could get most of my money back).

So thanks again for giving me direction on the cheapest car I ever bought without telling me I need to spend 3000 dollars or else I'm an idiot, I'm glad I picked this forum after further reading.
The reason I hang out on this forum is exactly what I have outlined in pink above. I have been on jeep forums that I refer to as the wild wild west forums and I have been around this forum enough to know that rude behavior is not tolerated by the moderators and even members will point it out quickly when the conversation devolves into that type within a thread. I hear it over and over from the moderators that we try to be helpful around here even if we have to repeat things over and over again. It is just the nature of this forum.

I followed the link over here from your new build forum to see what you started out with. Looks like you have some work ahead of you. Now that you have a new frame and a donor vehicle, things are looking up. When you get finished it should look great. I am looking forward to seeing the progress as you go. My 92 has needed some TLC and there are some projects with it coming up that I am going to have to chime out here for some help on. Mine has some body rust that I am going to need to take care of before the next inspection. But that is what makes this place so great as I know that someone will chime in with directions to take on my project jeep. Best of luck on yours.

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