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Old 04-21-2014, 03:12 PM   #1
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Swamp Buggy TJ

Hey y'all! I recently bought my first Jeep, so I thought it'd be cool to start a build thread here and keep track of it's progress. I'm also hoping to get some input/advice and learn a lot since this is my first Jeep.

I bought my Jeep about two months ago, its a 1998 chilli pepper red TJ 2.5. When I was car shopping I wasn't really looking for a jeep specifically. I have a mustang that I'm building to be a drag car, so I needed a daily driver. I live in the swamp so I needed something up off the ground with 4wd to keep from getting stuck everyday. I found my jeep on craigslist and it caught my interest. I drove it and was kind hesitant because of all the work it needed. I was looking for a daily driver not a second project car. But the more I drove it the more I fell in love. After negogiating with the sales guy for a good couple of hours, I finally got the deal I wanted. I think he was just ready to get rid of me. I paid $3,800 after taxes. It needed work but its completely rust and wreck free, which were my two main concerns.


Normal day at work.

On my way home from buying it I got offered a job, a really good job. I guess the jeep brought good luck. I started working 12 hour days, 7 days a week so I didn't have anytime to mess with the jeep. I found a little time to clean up the inside; rip the DISGUSTING carpet out, put new seat covers in and began to dye the dash. I also swapped out the plugs and wires to try and fix a skipping problem, it helped a little but I think it still needs a new cap and rotor.







One of my lower control arm mounts was bent, so when I finally had some free time I dropped it off at my old school. I recently graduated from auto tech, I would've done the work myself but I don't have a welder. I got new, upgraded LCA mounts and control arms.





Right now I'm back at work with no free time but I've got big plans for my little TJ. Even though it wasn't supposed to be a project, who needs spare cash anyway. Since my drag car is put on hold this summer, I might as well spend my money somewhere. I'm planning to finish dying the interior black and line-x the floors. I'm also swapping the a/t for a set of mud tires, I know its a Jeep but where I live setting it up for mud saves me a lot of heart ache. Even though I'm not planning to move up from 31s right now, I'd like to put a small lift on it. That's pretty much it for now. Sorry that was so long!

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Old 06-05-2014, 02:14 AM   #2
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Goodluck! Can't wait to see more!

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Old 06-05-2014, 06:50 AM   #3
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Pay some attention to the frame.Get the inside of it clean and dry.Prep and paint will add to more miles and smiles.
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:51 AM   #4
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I've had it on a lift and looked at the undercarriage. It looks as though someone painted everything early on. No rust, no peeling paint. Its clean as hell. No rust in the floor pans either which really surprised me.

I've done some work to it since I posted last. The main thing being new tires. I've also being trying to get rid of it's skipping problem. I've changed the cap and rotor, spark plugs, and wires. Gonna take the plugs back out this weekend and make sure none of them are fouled up from running them with the old wires. After that, I'm lost.

Its also having a power loss issue. I'm gonna clean up the t/b and IAC but I'm betting its something bigger. I know the o2 sensor needs to be replaced but I'm not sure if that'd cause this big of a problem.

The last problem is some electrical issues inside. The gauges are going crazy, lights work only when they want to, the radio is all kinds of jacked up...

I'm also gonna paint the dash. Its something cheap I can do to make it look a little nicer.

Right now the jeep project is on the back burner, aside from small things to get it running right. I just got a job as the assistant manager in the parts department at a dealership but I'm in the process of joining the AF and don't wanna leave with an empty bank account. Its just taking a minute to get in, the minimum weight requirement for my height is 115, I weigh 90lbs right now. Putting on weight is a hell of a lot harder than taking it off!
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Old 06-06-2014, 09:54 AM   #5
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I've had it on a lift and looked at the undercarriage. It looks as though someone painted everything early on. No rust, no peeling paint. Its clean as hell. No rust in the floor pans either which really surprised me.

I've done some work to it since I posted last. The main thing being new tires. I've also being trying to get rid of it's skipping problem. I've changed the cap and rotor, spark plugs, and wires. Gonna take the plugs back out this weekend and make sure none of them are fouled up from running them with the old wires. After that, I'm lost.

Its also having a power loss issue. I'm gonna clean up the t/b and IAC but I'm betting its something bigger. I know the o2 sensor needs to be replaced but I'm not sure if that'd cause this big of a problem.

The last problem is some electrical issues inside. The gauges are going crazy, lights work only when they want to, the radio is all kinds of jacked up...

I'm also gonna paint the dash. Its something cheap I can do to make it look a little nicer.

Right now the jeep project is on the back burner, aside from small things to get it running right. I just got a job as the assistant manager in the parts department at a dealership but I'm in the process of joining the AF and don't wanna leave with an empty bank account. Its just taking a minute to get in, the minimum weight requirement for my height is 115, I weigh 90lbs right now. Putting on weight is a hell of a lot harder than taking it off!
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Old 06-06-2014, 11:23 AM   #6
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Not sure why that posted twice or how to delete it, sorry!


With the new tires on.




The radio is a mess! Whoever installed it is a jackass.
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Old 06-06-2014, 05:02 PM   #7
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A "skipping" problem? I would do a compression test when you remove those plugs. Record your readings. If you have a cylinder losing compression theres your problem. Could be burnt valve or just worn rings. You lost a little more torque with the mud tires also. Im sure they are heavier than the at's were. 31's are quite a bit bigger than what came on your Jeep also. Just throwing stuff out there. Besides that, Nice work!
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Old 06-06-2014, 05:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MTJeepTJ View Post
A "skipping" problem? I would do a compression test when you remove those plugs. Record your readings. If you have a cylinder losing compression theres your problem. Could be burnt valve or just worn rings. You lost a little more torque with the mud tires also. Im sure they are heavier than the at's were. 31's are quite a bit bigger than what came on your Jeep also. Just throwing stuff out there. Besides that, Nice work!
Hey thanks! I'm definitely gonna do a compression test. Its been burning a bit of oil but it's 16 years old and 161k miles on it so I figured what it was burning would be about right but if the rings are worn I guess that'd explain a lot. Its just time to swap a 4.0 in!

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