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NickBoudin 12-02-2009 09:09 PM

What to look for when buying used!?
Hey guys, my name is nick I'm 19 and I am buying my first jeep and second vehicle before the snow hits the ground. I have my eye on 2 jeeps.

1 is a 2002 Wrangler Sport 6 cylinder, Hardtop with dark tinted windows, front tow hooks, rear trailer hitch, 3 inch lift, new 33x12.50 All-Terrains mounted on Black Crager steel rims. 85,000 Miles.

2 is a 2002 Jeep Wrangler X 6 cylinder, 5-speed, soft top with dark tinted windows, 4 inch suspension lift, new 35x12.50 All-Terrains mounted on Black Rock steel rims. 78,000 Miles.

Now, my first truck was a 94 dodge ram 1500 5 speed with a 318. It was
2wd. Living in western mass with such bad winters I want something that can get me through the snow. Also something that isnt going to suck driving on the road, OR through the trails.

Option #1 is cheaper then #2 But I'm just not too sure what to look for. I really want the one with less miles with the bigger lift, but my old man is trying to tell me the "equalibrium" may be off because it's lifted so high. I think with 12" wide tires it should be fine, but what do I know? :p


What can I look for on these jeeps before droping 10-13k on one or the other? :punk: Please let me know, I'm going to look tomorrow morning!

4Jeepn 12-02-2009 09:21 PM

Well the best advice is to buy a stock jeep vs a lifted one. Less hidden issues. Have any pic's you can link us too.. that would help.

That being said.. I doubt either of these jeep had the gears changed or the speed corrected.. thus the miles shown may not be true.

Look to see what rear axle they have.. The better rear axle is the dana 44 it has a square metal fill plug in the diff cover.. The dana 35, has plastic fill plug.. weaker axle.

Check for signs of off road abuse.. dent skid plates, bent skids, scrapes on the frame etc. Check for rust on the frame.

Check to make sure the AC and heat both work..

Make sure 4wd works.

How does the lift kit look... They both should have a front adj track bar installed, it runs from the axle to the frame, helps to center the axle... make sure they did not just drill another hole next to the factory hole and keep the stock bar with the lift..

kdukes4 12-02-2009 09:25 PM

my grandfather lives in easthampton, i know what you're talking about with winters. lucky for you, all you get is snow and not a lof of ice like the coast of maine. i'm bringing this up bc we get tons of salt on the roads, so look out for rust! Also, bc of the jeeps short wheelbase, you're handling in the snow isn't gonna be amazing by any means of you're imagination. you'll figure out your limits real quick, and with the nice windy roads and hills out there, just be cautious i guess, jeeps are so light that it'll glide right over that snowfall (i know from experience). to tell the truth, when i head through the windy roads to sugarloaf on the weekends from school, i prefer my friends awd legacy wagon over anything out there, especially in storm! i'm not really giving ya a heads up what to look for as much as something to anticipate:) like said above, total assymetric information b/w yourself and the seller with what's been done on the jeep itself and whether or not to trust the lift on the jeep. most likely you're fine, but lots of people prefer doing the modifications themselves.(me included! it's part of the experience)

NickBoudin 12-02-2009 09:35 PM

Gary's Jeeps - Jeeps for Sale

It's either of the silver ones on the top right page. The guy buys jeeps at auctions stock, lifts them, throws on tires and rims, and sells them. They dont get beat or abused like most other lifted jeeps lol. He POR-15's the whole underneath once he gets them, also.

NickBoudin 12-02-2009 09:36 PM

I would love to mod it myself, also. But There's plenty left to do to it, anyway still! :)

crazyredneck 12-02-2009 09:39 PM

just be paitient, its almost always better to buy a stock jeep compared to a modified one. that way you can make it exactly how you want.

mine i bought stock with worn out 30X9.50 tires. i put soem 31X10.50 goodyear wrangler duratracs and loved them in the winter and all around. then i smacked a deer and it has been upgrades ever since. im enjoying doing all the upgrades my self

4Jeepn 12-02-2009 09:42 PM

The one with 33s seems to have a body lift.. also check to see if it has an SYE..on the transfer case, or was the t-case just dropped for the lift...

NickBoudin 12-02-2009 09:42 PM

This thing is exactly what I am looking for, so I'd rather make payments on it up front then to be making payments AND dumping money into it also. There's plenty left to do to it, it's not like I cant mod it even more, to make it exactly how I want it. :cool:

NickBoudin 12-02-2009 09:44 PM


Originally Posted by 4Jeepn (Post 498380)
The one with 33s seems to have a body lift.. also check to see if it has an SYE..on the transfer case, or was the t-case just dropped for the lift...

I'm assuming it was just dropped. If so cant I just install a SYE?

sefatboy 12-04-2009 10:32 AM

If I was going to buy one of them...It would be #2

APPSTATEwrangler 12-04-2009 08:39 PM


Originally Posted by sefatboy (Post 499275)
If I was going to buy one of them...It would be #2

yeah if it comes down to a stale mate then get the hardtop. softs dont hold up as well in the winter and they will make life alot easier, i.e. if you want to get some roof racks or something. thats just my opinion

AKWrangler 12-05-2009 10:24 AM

Like everyone says it's better to buy stock, but you say this dealer puts the aftermarket parts on after he buys them. Does he warranty the jeep, including the parts? and does he recalibrate the speedo? I would check the diff's too, to make sure they are beefy enough for those tires.I would be careful about using the four wheel drive in the snow. if your state plows on a regular basis and the roads are pretty dry you shouldn't use the four wheel drive on dry pavement, it will ruin the front diff. We get a ton of snow up here but they keep the roads pretty clean so I hardly ever use it, only on off road. plus check the steering stabilizer, it should be upgrade for anythng over 32 inches. good luck on your choice and have fun.

SandDevil93 12-06-2009 04:57 PM

Learn from my aware of and be educated about the "death wobble" possible in our beloved TJs. We bought my 05 in April with about 68k miles with a slight "movement" in the steering wheel at 40 mph....Being newbies, we had no clue that less than 3000 miles later, we have invested (or will invest when it is all said and done) more than $1500 along with the monthly payment :(. BTW, my Jeep has a 3 1/2" Rubicon Express lift with 33s and the speedo is at least 6 miles off also. Good luck in your decision. Be patient the deal will come.

trailrated13 12-06-2009 07:18 PM

If I bought the Jeep and brought it to NC I would pick number 2. however you will be in what sounds like colder weather than I so number 1 is probably a better pick because it already has the hard top on and a decent lift

specbill 12-06-2009 08:23 PM

Unless this seller has been around for a while AND you are getting some meaningful warrranties on the mods from this seller I wouuld pass on both of these. This guy is a pro at this game and is way ahead of you so if you are going to play in his ball park you better be a pro at evaluating these two very careful!!

terrible2 12-06-2009 09:18 PM

yea make sure you have suspension lifts over BL, BL are cheap and not true lifts (also 3" of lift if they even make them is a little dangerous) Im guessing that option #1 has 1.25 BL and 2.25 of BB I believe is the combo. Also Steering Stabilizers shouldnt be necessary, I dont run one with 4" of lift.

As for tires its awesome both are brand new tires, yea 35" tires are more expensive than 33" tires, but your rear diff if both are D35s, youre going to end up replacing that in option #2.

Also with X and Sports, D44 was an option, check if the rear is a D44 on both options, if both have D44 id say go with option #1 since it has a Hardtop and D44. Tow hitch, dont mind that at all you can get a bumper that'll have a slot for that.

For your money id say go with option #1, you can definitely sell that hardtop the going rate is about $700-$900. Then again you havent told us EVERYTHING so make the decision yourself, do alot of research I sure wish I had when I bought mine brand new.

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