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airspeed247 08-30-2012 01:14 AM

!! 93' YJ BUILD Pic's INCLUDED !!
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So after 4 months of searching and pondering I am finally the proud owner of a JEEP. Specifically a YJ! So for some background I was having a huge debate over getting a 2.5 with 4.10's and 33's or getting a 4.0 and 33's and regearing. I wanted a DD that I could take out on the weekend and make the occasional trip 100's of miles away to offroad. budget was around $4500 which isn't that easy in the Texas area. Not impossible but not easy like some of the other states I have seen.

So after much searching I came across mine. I had narrowed it down but a few things really stood out with this one. It was listed at $4000 and had the following:
4.0 171K, 5 speed, 4.10 gears, 4" suspension lift, 33's, 8.8 rear with disk brakes and LSD, front has a locker as well, Tube fenders, crusher rear fenders, Smitty front and rear bumpers, sound bar and a few different tops. Tranny grinds when shifting 1-4, not all the time but 90% of the time, a/c needs charging and overall needs some TLC.

Listing Picture:

Immediately while walking around the vehicle I notice a snapped Shackle (this picture is after we took off the locking nut:

After pondering it for a bit we finally make a deal for $3700 and I felt really good about it. Needed some love but I was happy to finally have a jeep with a decent start.

Spent the first 3 hours under her with the help of the PO. Took a while since I didnt have any tools with me but the PO helped me out a lot. The leaf had shifted as well so I had to loosen the entire assembly and straighten it back home. Used a shackle I picked up at auto zone just to get me home.

By home I mean 250 miles away...

airspeed247 08-30-2012 01:24 AM

Finally left the PO's place at around 9pm after gettting there at 5 and started on the trip home. Has a Pro Comp leaf lift that actually rode pretty well but the lack of both track bars and front sway bar made the 3.5 hour trip home a bit more exciting. I'll put the sway bar back on but the other bars are long gone and I don't need them anyways.

Got home around 1 am and was happy to make it. Speedo read 75/80 but we were going about 60/65 the whole way.

Patch job:

and finally home

Super dirty and ready for some TLC

First things first: Car Wash

Also my first mod/add on: Rear bumper with tow hitch, shackle mount and swing out tire carrier. Best part $250!!!! from a jeep junkyard Really helped finish out the look.

airspeed247 08-30-2012 01:31 AM

Next was a trip to the auto store for some much needed basic tune up items:
Synthetic oil and filter
oil pan gasket
distributor cap/rotor
spark plugs and wires
fluid for transfer case

Soon to come is transmission fluid change (hoping this helps with the grinding gears)
- PO says they have been grinding since he got it in 98.. he has had to change out the clutch master cylinder about 4 times.. Any ideas on that?? Only grinds 2-4 or downshifting. Putting it in 1st and 5th ok for the most part.

Also need valve cover gasket
(its leaking and dirty as crazy around that area) also didn't look too good in the engine so I added a bottle of seafoam in the crankcase with the fresh oil.
Gaskets for leaking transfer case

airspeed247 08-30-2012 01:37 AM

Presently my immediate concerns are the grinding transmission, the dirty fluids, 2 front tires and the leaks underneath that seem to be coming from the valve cover, oil pan, transfer case and the rear axle.

Rear axle leak: (any help with this?) Its slinging gear oil on the left side of the axle and the shock.

Anyone know if theres a seal where the shaft connects into the rear axle? Name of it? Difficulty of replacing it?

That and ideas on the transmission? We'll see what the fluid swap does.

THANKS for any future help and I hope you guys enjoy this.

CHL 08-30-2012 03:26 AM

Welcome to the Jeep world.

denisbaldwin 08-30-2012 06:28 AM

Sounds like a good start to me! :D

airspeed247 08-30-2012 11:40 AM

Thanks, just need to get that axle seal? Issue figured out and find where the transmission dipstick is located. Never had in issue finding one until now...

Carralo1 08-30-2012 12:33 PM

If it's a 5 speed manual then you don't have a tranny dipstick. It takes about 3.5 quarts. It's a pain to do. There's just a drain ad fill plug, both 15/16 I believe. Drain is on passenger side and fill is in drivers. Will need a pump or a tube that connects to bottle to get fluid in. Rear axle fluid issue is probably the seal right behind the pinion yoke. Easy to change and only costs a couple bucks. Remove the 4 small bolts that hold in u joint, remove the driveshaft, then you can take off pinion yoke nut (1 1/8" I believe). Then there is the seal. Remove it and replace it. Buy a new pinion yoke nut when you order the seal because they are one time use nuts. Make sure to count the # of threads you see exposed before you take off the pinion nut because it is important for the rear diff to have correct preload set. Some will say you can do it this way, others say take it to a shop and have them dissassemble and measure everything when putting the pinion yoke back on.

airspeed247 08-30-2012 12:58 PM

That would explain why I can't find the dipstick. Lol I appreciate that, I'll get that done tonight or tomorrow.

Rear axle seal sounds pretty easy then, I may ask a shop to quote it just so I don't throw off something and trash the rear end. I hate paying for what I can do though so I'll check it out again today as well.

Should be getting some black rims soon as well. Hopefully this weekend. And probably paint the hood to cover up all the peeling

airspeed247 08-30-2012 03:05 PM

Any idea what that seal on the axle is called?

95YamJam 08-30-2012 06:40 PM

Pinion seal, or pinion yoke seal.

Be careful with that. There is a crush sleve in there. if you over tighten it you kill the pinion bearings, too loose you kill the pinion bearings. I am unsure of the 8.8 actual method but i did mine on my d 35 and it required the use of an inch pound rotational torque wrench. It was $125 by itself.

Not sure if the 8.8 is doen the same way. The mark the nut method i have seen vids on seems to work for the 8.8.

I have an 8.8 to swap my d35 for so I am sure I will soon find out the correct method soon.

Great jeep it seems the hard stuff is all done.

rykemc 08-30-2012 07:51 PM

One thing you might consider is all the oil blowing out of your motor/trans could be settling on the rear axle and making it look like it is leaking there.
My F350 looked like that after an oil change because we spilled some oil on the cross member.
Just a thought.

airspeed247 08-30-2012 11:48 PM

I sure like to hope the "hard" work is. But I know it never seems to work out that way. Lol Its the maintenance that I'm having fun with now.

Is there a way to check the gear level on these 8.8's? Doesn't seem to be a fill plug on the back.

MarkNog 08-30-2012 11:54 PM


Originally Posted by airspeed247 (Post 2743433)
I sure like to hope the "hard" work is. But I know it never seems to work out that way. Lol Its the maintenance that I'm having fun with now.

Is there a way to check the gear level on these 8.8's? Doesn't seem to be a fill plug on the back.

Depending on what it's out of its on the top front near the pinion or on the drivers side axle tube.

Nice ride though man!

airspeed247 08-31-2012 02:18 AM

Thanks, it's out of a 99 ford explorer & the front axle has a lockright locker. Forgot to add that earlier.

airspeed247 08-31-2012 02:19 AM

Is it like the other axles? Fill it up until it leaks out? That wouldn't make sense if it's on top of the axle though... How do you check the level?

airspeed247 09-01-2012 06:29 PM

Alright lets see where we left off...

Hopped into the Tune-up. Figured itd be the best place to start with the jeep rather then mods for now. Kind of boring but solid foundations help create firm structures I suppose.

It was starting a bit slow (could be due to its age) but I kicked it off with replacing the distributor cap, rotor, wires and spark plugs along with the pcv valve. (Which had broke off when I went to check it out after I found oil on the air filter)

I've done this many of times before but didnt do a great job of marking the wires and this took a bit of headscratching. Mainly because in the repair manual it shows the distributor cap perfectly inline and in real life it never really works out that way.

Replaced everything and it still doesn't fire immediatly up like I'd like it to. Not sure if this is just how they are but it seems to crank a bit before it'll start. Also has a very faint lope. Could be normal also but its just things I notice. Maybe check the timing?

Then went on to the oil change.

Advance was having a sale on the synthetic with bosch oil filter so I changed it out and tossed in a bottle of Seafoam along with it in the crankcase. Huge Seafoam fan and I wasn't exactly impressed with how the engine looked inside the pcv valve hole so hopefully that will help clean things up.

Next, hopped underneath to check out all the fluids that I could see dripping around. (as I figure out what they are I will be doing seals) I know, more super exciting stuff to read about but I feel like its important...

airspeed247 09-01-2012 06:51 PM

PO said that the transmission needed to be rebuilt and I knew it was grinding as I shifted gears so I decided I'd change the transmission fluid out and see if that helped any.

My neighbor is an Amzoil rep so I got squared away with some good synthetic oil for the job. I know most people recommend the Redline but I had a source so I went with it.

As many of you know the transmission takes about 3 1/4 quarts. Obviously the first thing I did was drain the oil. If you don't know how to do this I found these online for reference:

Fill Plug on the Drivers side (Picture needs to rotate to the left):

Drain Plug on the front, more towards the passenger side:

I read somewhere to always take the fill cap off first so that if you run into any issues it won't be after you drained your fluid. Just a helpful tip you can use for any circumstance that relates.

Another helpful tip is to place something under the drain plug that routes the fluid away from the slide plate under your transfer case. (You don't need to reomve that). I just used an orange tranny fluid funnel positioned underneath the drain hole and it worked perfectly.

I removed the bolt and of course it was caked on with metal and sludge. (PO said he'd never replaced the fluid since he got it in 98')

Then I waited for the fluid which I figured was going to be horribly disgusting. It was, however there was another issue....

Only about a half quart came out..... Uh..... Of course your transmission was grinding PO. It needs fluid to run smooth.

Cleaned off the bolt and the area under the transmission and replaced it. Then topped off the transmission. You have to get a pump to do this if you want to do it from below. DON'T get a cheap siphon (they suck) and pay for a good pump. I broke mine in the middle of the first bottle and had to rig it to work.

Also checked the transfer case fluid, which was only about a 1/4 quart low. For your reference if you don't know how to do this:

Then moved to the rear axle. I know this had to be low due to the gear fluid slung everywhere. (as shown in pictures above) Ended up putting in 2 full quarts into the 8.8. Not sure how much it holds but I know that can't be close to being full...

Test drove her to work that night and although the transmission still grinds a little its BY FAR smoother and better then before.

airspeed247 09-01-2012 06:56 PM

Picked up a hi lift from my job at academy and am presently working on figuring out how I want to mount it to my rear tire carrier. For now though I tossed it right behind the two rear seatbelts. Fits like a charm and doesn't move. Hops a bit on a bump but I couldn't have asked for anything better for now.

First drive to work. (Other then the 250 mile trip I made to get her home)

Yes, the windshield says H2 Recovery Team. Still not sure if I'm going to keep that on there but it'll stay for now

airspeed247 09-01-2012 07:00 PM

Soon to come:
Swap for black wheels or get mine painted
Paint hood where its completely faded black
Figure out what to do with the interior
Mount hi lift
Replace all Shackles
Figure out how to fix the rear pinion seal leak in the 8.8

GO OFFROAD ALREADY!!!! I need some poser picts's.

bigbuckd 09-02-2012 08:32 AM

looks like you got a nice jeep. Great start. Must be nice living down south. No rust issues. that is our main concern up here in upstate NY. keep up the good work and enjoy.

Carralo1 09-02-2012 10:56 AM

Mine takes a second or two longer to crank sometimes too. Only other thing I can think of is fuel pressure dying off. I've read that it could be one of the diaphragms on the fuel pump that is going... Just an idea

airspeed247 09-02-2012 12:07 PM

Thanks BigBuck. Theres definitely a few rust buckets running around but your right about there being less rust around here. I was very fortunate to have found what I did. I was watching it online for a month and a half before I had the funds and it just worked out.

Fuel pressure.. Good call Carralo1. I should have thought of moving to that next after ignition. I'll take a look at that and see what I find.

airspeed247 09-02-2012 12:13 PM

Quick addition:

Went ahead and tossed some flat black on the hood. The faded paint job was a total eyesore so this will divert some attention from it for now. It needs another layer or two but I got the top coat in place. Obviously not the end fix but I'm in school right now so I'm just making do with what I have.

Funny story, I basically live in a college town and the subdivision I live in leases to college students. Well I've been under this Jeep for about 4 days and the on-site maintenance guy pulled up and asked if I wanted to do his U-joints since I seem to love working on cars. Hahaha I had to laugh.. I don't know if I "love" working on cars but I have enjoyed working on this Jeep. Definitely top 2 after the C6 I had.

airspeed247 09-02-2012 04:37 PM

FINALLY got off the pavement today. Nothing spectacular but was nice to get her offroad:
Need a little more rear lift.

MFG 09-02-2012 05:36 PM

Looks good, keep it up

airspeed247 09-02-2012 08:32 PM

Thanks MFG

airspeed247 09-02-2012 08:36 PM

Decided to go ahead and work on the CB I have had lying around. Biggest decision was trying to figure out how to mount everything. Especially since the rear panels are covered with the rock crusher corners.

Ended up deciding to incorporate the bolts on the tailgate.

Mount test fit

With some paint on the brace. Left the connection point bare stainless for grounding.

Extra brace screw

All painted:


airspeed247 09-02-2012 08:42 PM

For the radio on the interior I had a brace from my previous ride but didn't know where to mount it. Decided on incorporating it into the lockable armrest. This way when I park places I can disconnect the power, unbolt it and toss it in the lockbox.

How it started:

Removed the cup holders and cleaned it up. The way the cup holders are set up I can actually just screw them into any other location and remount them elsewhere.

And test fit. I'll run all the wiring next after I get some plastic wire covers.

whyteYJeep 09-02-2012 10:08 PM

your going to hate that cb sticking up as high as it is, i had mine like that and it got caught on everything and eventually bent the brace, i will post a picture of mine for you to show where i found the best place was for it and it was still able to be used. tree's are cb killers... the build looks good, get your wheels yet?

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