Project: 'Blue Bear' -- Girly Daily Driver
Hey, guys. This is going to be my build log, or somewhat, for my '91 YJ, which was rattle canned blue... but it looks pretty good except where the paint is coming off. :doh:
PO said it has a 4" lift, I think it has about a 2" suspension lift, and 2" body lift on 33" wheels with a 12.5" width on them.
Anyway: bought this about a week ago, and from day one started tearing it apart.
Day 1 Thurs 8/18: Took a look at the engine... a nice long look. Realized that the valve cover was leaking oil, and the black gunk wasn't "just dirt", but a metric ton of oil.
Took off the cover, scrapped it all off, and used some Power Tune and Acetone to clean it off the best I could. Cleaned the inside of the cover, too. Took off a few layers of black.
This took up most of my day, since I had to drive to my Dad's shop (he owns a Boat repair place) to get some acetone / power tune.
Replaced the stock cork gasket with a nice Fel-Pro rubber gasket. Fits like a glove.
Also replaced the spark plugs and oil cap (which had a old dried up cork gasket), oil / filter.
Day 3 Saturday 8/20: The thermo-sensor wasn't working, and I realized that it's a little low on coolant. So, it's time for a thermostat change... After I went to put the housing back on, the small screw on the bottom fell into the casing that holds the fan... I had to take off the belt and take that pulley off to get to it...
... THIS HAPPENED TWICE.
Pretty much took up all of my day, which started late since it's my weekend. Once I finally got it all in, started it up: And there was a coolant leak. :facepalm:
Took the housing off, and sure as hell cracked the housing. Went to buy a new one at Napa...
Old vs. New.
Popped this baby on, and everything works wickedly!
I took it to my Dad's house to see if he knew what was wrong with the brakes... for some reason they feel like they grip and then they lose grip. He said I need to bleed the brakes and go from there.
On the way there, my heater hose got a hole in it -- time to replace it.
Day 4 Sunday 8/21: The Previous Owner installed Cherokee leather seats onto the stock frame. This is okay, but my girlfriend, to whom this car will be her daily driver, was complaining it didn't go up enough. So after some clever fabrication, managed to put it forward 2 inches or so... anyone over 5'7" cannot drive this Jeep any longer.
The PO also installed some really poorly cut diamond plate around the light switch and the panel on the right of the steering wheel, which has a round push switch... that's attached to nothing.
I ripped those off.
A few more 'this and that' things. Nothing too hectic.
Day 6 Tuesday 8/24: Dad ordered some nice marine-grade heater tube for the Jeep. I installed it today... it looks BEAUTIFUL!
But don't take my word for it... you be the judge:
Old ugly tubing:
I'm going to change the main tube on the top and bottom of the radiator when I get paid.
The Thermo-sensor STILL wasn't working, so I installed a new thermal sender in the thermostat housing. On my way home: the gauge did not move... so, it's time to see what the FK is up.
I also topped off all the fluids: Power Steering, Coolant, and that was all that was needed.
I took out the radio, to see the damage, since I already saw a rats nest behind it... and let me say: whoever installed this unit had no self respect...
The second I take the radio out, I see a spark, I push it back in and nearly every time there's a spark, so I had to reach back and take out the wires and hold them back. I found out whoever installed it cut the power cable for the stock radio, and left it hanging there... and there was a little piece of wire sticking out. Just enough to short circuit the car... After a couple of hours of trying to trace wires and figure out what the HELL he did, I realized that instead of using the stock wires, or even buying a harness that direct connects to the stock harness, the person installing the head unit ran separate wires for 12v Constant and a 12v switch, which was running off of something very strange, and made it so you had to make sure the radio was off before leaving the Jeep... They also wired the front door speakers in parallel with some poorly fabricated rear speakers which I am too embarrassed to post ATM.
I did a bit of cleaning up, ripped out the old RCA/Remote wires from an old sub setup the previous owner installed... I will not be having subs in the Jeep... I also did some prep work for some nice wire management to be done either Thursday, or this weekend. Depending on this damned hurricane coming toward me. I also ran the rear speaker wires in the stock tubing / clips on the inside of the tube, hiding the wires from sight.
There will be plenty of zip ties, heat shrink butt connectors, and maybe some tubing.
Plans for the future: Fix everything up, install the AC (I Have all the pieces, save for the tubing) add some heat backed material and some carpeting, I want to get a sound bar, and either make or buy something different for rear speakers. I also need to change most of the "seals" around the Jeep, like the window seals for the hard top, and also change the hardware for the hard top. The PO owned the hell out of the sides, so I need to get some better screws with some nice washers.
More will be updated when I'm not exhausted.
Off to a nice start, keep us posted.
Looking good...btw did you know the temp sensor for the gauge is on the driver side rear if the head? I has just one wire.
That explains why Tue gauge still isn't working. :doh:
Where is it located? Might you be able to snap a picture for me?
The sensor in the the thermostat you changed is the engine coolant temperature sensor and is only used by the ecm to calculate fuel and timing curves.
So, I couldn't really find anything... I took a picture to maybe see if you guys could help me out:
I also found this, which was just dangling there by the back of the valve cover.
Might this be the wire in question? And maybe it was just never plugged back in?
I'm not sure how far down the sensor is.
nice work skot i know ill never be driving it ever :/ lucky your short haha saturday i have a game now at 10am but sunday im down to go back and pull parts for the yj
that would be the wire the sensor should be right in there some where.
Cool. Thanks! I'll look about.
I'm about 50% through fixing it all. I finally got tired of trying to untangle the mess and just removed all the speaker wiring, bought a new chassis-side connector, and started putting it together properly. Hopefully it will go into the Jeep this weekend.
Did yours break all the clips on the heater control cables? Mine did. He even managed to break the adjuster on the white cable (vent). So far it appears that cable is made of pure Unobtainium.
Actually, no. Haha. A member of this forum and I (as well as a few others) are going to a Junk yard this weekend, I'll keep an eye out for you.
But, yeah... they used regular inside house A/C wire for the door panels. (I'll upload pictures when I get home). It looked like they took a lamp, cut the wire, and used it for the speakers. :hide:
I have quite a bit of work to do on this Jeep. But it'll all be worth it.
BTW: I think you're talking about, in terms of the RCA thing, is for stock head units (radios) that don't have RCA outs. So they have this little device that splices into the speaker wire, and then turns the audio signal into an RCA signal. (Which is just a lowered voltage audio signal.)
I was really into car audio before... so I know a bit about people's stupidity when it comes to wiring their car.
The thing I don't understand is that my PO installed secondary wires for the remote (to turn the unit on when the car turns on, and off when it's off) and a secondary wire for the main power... when that was already in the old stock harness. PO also drilled holes through my firewall... :facepalm:
I'll confess to drilling a couple firewall holes. In my defense though:
A) How else am I going to get the big power cables for the ham gear in? :)
B) I used metal conduit "cord clamps" with rubber bushings to seal the holes.
I mean, I drilled a hole in the firewall of my Mustang for 2 awg. But I out the proper grommet and all that jazz. There's no issues with that. But The PO drilled 5 20 awg sized holes in the firewall... Rather than one big one with a grommet... Plus there's no grommet or anything. One of those cables were a power cable... :doh:
Today, I bled the brakes, and finally just admitted to myself I have messed up rotors in the rear. Going to go get that checked out yesterday.
I degreased my engine, and now it's idling all wrong, so I replaced some Vacuum boots, and still nothing. Hopefully tomorrow will be a more productive day...
I haven't updated in a while. Unfortunately for me, I just keep getting worse and worse news. :dance:
After bleeding the brakes, I started experiencing a loud knocking noise. I took off the belt and ran it for a quick second and didn't hear anything... so, I figure my water pump is gone.
I was having an idle issue, but I replaced the TPS (Throttle Position Sensor), and it now runs beautiful (again).
I replaced the wiper switch on the side which was busted... took the whole steering column apart... and then I lost the linkage for the turn signal. I'm going to take down my window either Thursday or this weekend and look for the linkage. If not: to the junk yard.
Also, I pinched some wire on the steering column. When I went to put the key in after putting it back together, sparks flew out the ignition and my running lights / dash lights stopped working. Checked the fuse: sure as can be: blown with a nice burnt mark. Going to take that apart either Thursday / This weekend and find the root of that problem. :facepalm:
I'm getting there, though!
On the to do list, in order of importance:
- Turn Signal Linkage / Turn Signal & Wiper wand
- Water Pump / Upper & Lower Radiator Hose
- Replace Rotors / Pads in the back
- Install Heat Shield / Backed Carpet
- Install AC
- Replace Distributor Cap / Rotor / Wires
- Replace front bumper... (I realized that the tire rubs the front bumper, which was bent in some sort of accident.)
Here's how she sits now:
Anyone have opinions on decent front bumpers? Thinking of going for the classic double tubed bumper again.
Sorry for a lack of update... I haven't done anything to it.
I recently found out that I'm keeping it! *HUZZAH*
So, work will continue in the next upcoming weeks.
What's to be done:
-Figure out why my 4x4 doesn't work
-Fixing the front bumper
-Finding out why my back left light isn't bright
-Replacing the Turn signal switch (again) & The intermittent wiper box
But what I'm going to do tomorrow / Tuesday:
Take off that hard top and the doors and go Bikini ;)
Yesterday, I decided to diagnose why my 4x4 isn't working.
Crawled under to this:
Followed the vacuum lines
I went out and got some electrical tape, taped it up a bit and it felt like it engaged -- but I was hard pressed for time, so I didn't get to fully test it.
I also did this:
And adding onto the list that needs done:
-Paint the diamond plate black.
-Sand and Paint the Frame
-Replace the back driver's side light (There's a bad connection to ground, and I think the actual base is to blame)
**And, yes, my wheel gap is the perfect size for a can of coke.
this needs an update!
This is in chronological order, now...
We went out to a local mud spot, and went mudding. And it was 100% certain: my front axle was not engaging. I still had a day full of fun, and getting stuck at silly places.
A few days later, I was on my way home from work, and it started pulling right. Badly. Then, due to an aggressive driver, I had to stomp on the brakes, making it pull left -- hard. So, I put-putted home, and smelled my front brakes. My front passenger side brake smelled horrid. Definitely a case of the brakes not disengaging.
The next day I tore it all apart, released the bleed valve, and pushed the caliper and it wasn't going anywhere.
I got the new caliper, replaced it. And when I went to do the leak test, I saw it was leaking -- except it was leaking from the rubber hose this time. (I should've replaced it automatically, honestly).
I went to take off the hose to make sure the new one was long enough. I started trying to loosen the nut, and stripped it. :facepalm::facepalm::facepalm:
About 5 man hours, and a $25 dollar double flange tool later -- I managed to cut the metal line, shorten it by 4" or so, and reconnect it.
$16.99 for the caliper, $16 dollars for the new hose, $25 dollars for the double flange tool, lots of work... got my brakes back.
You can see where the brake fluid was coming out. Something must've snagged it while Iwas removing the caliper.
I was filling up one day, and decided I'd get a nice full tank of fuel. A rare occurrence, since I have little patience at the pump. I fill up and drive off.
Upon arriving at my destination, I smell fuel -- and it's strong, too.
I look under neath and found a constant stream coming out of a 'bubble' in the plastic tank.
I sight heavily -- another thing wrong. But, it's all in good fun, I suppose. I get online and order a new one.
It's en route now.
Now to tackle the 4x4!
I had three basic options:
I went with #3.
My nice rusty one got off an XJ that was being parted out. Found by a friend of mine...
The old two-piece axle next to the single shaft axle.
I paid $50 dollars for the shaft -- which I was told was too much. And later was informed he was gonna sell the whole axle for $100. :facepalm:
If I would've known the task ahead, I would've gotten the whole axle.
So, I go to my Dad's shop, and I take everything apart. All the axles are out. (It took a good 2 hours to get both axles apart from the knuckles).
I then tried to pry the carriage out for a good 30 minutes. By this time (due to me being lazy and cocky) I was running out of time. I threw the axle shafts back in, replaced the two piece with a one piece axle shaft, and threw everything back together. I didn't realize (at the time) how much difference there was in size from the two piece and one piece...
Needless to say, I woke up to this the next morning:
A nice pool of gear oil just accumulating in the knuckle.
I immediately went back to my Dad's shop, took the axle shaft back out, and attempted to fit the wrong seal into the wrong hole. :facepalm::facepalm::facepalm:
45 minutes later and a ruined seal, I realized I was approaching this the wrong way. I needed the right seal, and I needed to do it properly. I left the Jeep at the shop over night, and the next morning I went to a local place called 'Blair's Bearings'. I brought in the axle shaft, the old seal, new seal, and they matched it up for me and got me a new seal for the outer CAD.
I went back, and some brute strength and clever threaded-rod working lead to this beautiful sight:
A wonderfully seated seal with the new one piece axle shaft.
*** NOTE: I know I should have replaced both the inside seal in the pumpkin and the outer CAD seal. However, like I said, I couldn't get the carriage out, and I plan on upgrading to D44's in the near future. ****
I went out to a dried up pond (it's dry in South Florida), put it in 4wd, let the wheels sink in a bit, and stomped on it -- and mud was a flyin' from all 4 wheels. :dance:
I organize a nice little trip to a mudding spot on New Years Day. We got a late start. I ended up being first out there... and I got antsy, and decided to head out myself... that never ends well.
Can you spot the missing YJ?
THAR SHE BLOWS!
I ended up getting pulled out by some fellow Jeepers who happened to be out there. I wasn't in any sort of danger. There were lots of people there on ATV's, and it's only a mile or so from a main road. Hence why I decided to be foolish.
In Miami, we've been having this rash of cold. With the wind chill factor, it was down to 20 degrees the other night.
At any rate, this morning, my Brother's truck got towed away to get it repaired at a shop. We went to follow in the Jeep. It started fine. We went to put it in gear (automatic transmission), and it wouldn't go... I look underneath, and the cable wasn't moving.
The issue is that there's an after-market automatic transmission shift kit on there. A B&M one. I ended up finding the name of the kit, it's a B&M 80675 StarShifter.
I started to take it apart, and found what everyone LOVES finding -- random broken parts.
This piece slid right out:
The broken piece next to the opposing end piece:
The whole cable:
I scratch my head, confused. Because it looks like a clean break. I figure it's a simple throttle cable. I go to Napa, and they didn't even bother looking. I called a bunch of places, and they were all not eager to help.
Upon searching on the internet, I just ordered a replacement part from Summit Racing. Thankfully they have a good delivery time. I ordered it Wednesday evening, and estimated delivery date is Friday, by the end of day. So hopefully the Jeep will be back up by this weekend!
- Fuel tank install
- Fuel Tank skid plate fabrication
- Replacing the POS shift cable
- Painting the Diamond Plate Rocker Panels / Making new actual useful rocker panels.
That's always fun, little random broken parts to tick ya off. I've found Summit Racing has bailed me out of many little situations like that. Always willing to help as well.
Nice build up by the way, kinda got the same story line going with my 94 YJ. I'm in the middle of looking for the TJ / XJ solid shaft for the front differential on mine.
As far as the axle, it shouldn't be hard to find. Look for someone parting out their Jeep, or Junk yards. Any XJ 94 and up, or any TJ will have it.
But don't do what I did and over pay. Apparently they're worth $25 dollars or so.
I've enjoyed this read. I hope you got the jeep for a song because by the time you are done repairing everything you will have rebuilt the damn thing!
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