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Old 04-21-2015, 10:44 AM
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mint 1988, what would you do?

I have a chance to buy a mint, stock 1988 YJ, 5 speed, 4.2 and BA 10. It's from CA and I live in WI, the rust belt. 115,000 miles, and 20,000 miles on the BA 10 and clutch. $4000 non-negotiable price. No rust on the body, no rust on the frame, all solid, never seen salt, and I will not drive it on salt either. Will be used for daily driving in good weather with the occasional mild off roading. I want to buy it for the relatively low miles and beautiful body and frame. Most frames out here are like swiss cheese, even newer TJs. I am hesitant because of the BA 10. What would you all do - buy it and see how long the Tranny lasts, avoid buying it, buy it and keep an eye out for a tranny and T Case swap for when I need it, or wait til after it fails to look for one, etc.? Money is scarce right now, the $4000 buy-in is all I have for some time.

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Old 04-21-2015, 11:59 AM   #2
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I have a chance to buy a mint, stock 1988 YJ, 5 speed, 4.2 and BA 10. It's from CA and I live in WI, the rust belt. 115,000 miles, and 20,000 miles on the BA 10 and clutch. $4000 non-negotiable price. No rust on the body, no rust on the frame, all solid, never seen salt, and I will not drive it on salt either. Will be used for daily driving in good weather with the occasional mild off roading. I want to buy it for the relatively low miles and beautiful body and frame. Most frames out here are like swiss cheese, even newer TJs. I am hesitant because of the BA 10. What would you all do - buy it and see how long the Tranny lasts, avoid buying it, buy it and keep an eye out for a tranny and T Case swap for when I need it, or wait til after it fails to look for one, etc.? Money is scarce right now, the $4000 buy-in is all I have for some time.
Personally, I'd be all over that for $4000 in that condition! Stock too?! Rare find.

Buy it and run until the tranny croaks or doesn't. Just keep your feelers out for an AX and you'll eventually run across one for a good price.

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Old 04-21-2015, 01:58 PM   #3
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the ba 10 is weak but many of us have high miles on it. mine's 140k and still shifts good.
just plan for a swap if it ever does fail.
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Old 04-21-2015, 02:11 PM   #4
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4K is a steal for a mint YJ even if it had no tranny!
If you don't buy It I sure as hell will.
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Old 04-21-2015, 02:43 PM   #5
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Old 04-21-2015, 04:54 PM
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There seems to be a general consensus so far. That helps with my decision. I'll get it, and keep an eye out for an affordable AX 15 with NP 231 attached, because it seems like that is a simpler route than just an AX 15 swap.
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Old 04-21-2015, 06:34 PM   #7
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I it my '95 rio grande 2.5l for $7000. All stock, 111k miles. I would be all over that bigger motor for that much less, and I don't have that much cash, well don't have any hash at all! I need to get a job this summer to pay off my last $1000 that I borrowed from my pops. Go for it!
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Old 04-21-2015, 08:53 PM   #8
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If it checks out, I would agree to jump on it. Your only issue is lack of funds and relying on a 27 year old car. So a YJ might not be the best option.

That being said - unless this is some kind of family deal I'd be more than skeptical of an interstate sale of a "mint" YJ only $4k.

I live in CA, recently bought a YJ for my kid. I can tell you that ANYTHING remotely clean and driveable under $4k goes quickly out here. If this is really "mint" this seller could move it in a heart beat for $4k. Heck even a good runner that U.S. Best up or a clean YJ that needs mechanical work could be moved quickly.

Just wondering why this seller is willing to deal with the hassle, if he could move it in a day or two on Craigslist.
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Old 04-21-2015, 11:33 PM   #9
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The word "mint" referring to an '88 also makes me skeptical.
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Old 04-22-2015, 12:31 AM   #10
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Any pics of this "mint" YJ?
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Old 04-22-2015, 03:15 AM   #11
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If it checks out, I would agree to jump on it. Your only issue is lack of funds and relying on a 27 year old car. So a YJ might not be the best option.

That being said - unless this is some kind of family deal I'd be more than skeptical of an interstate sale of a "mint" YJ only $4k.

I live in CA, recently bought a YJ for my kid. I can tell you that ANYTHING remotely clean and driveable under $4k goes quickly out here. If this is really "mint" this seller could move it in a heart beat for $4k. Heck even a good runner that U.S. Best up or a clean YJ that needs mechanical work could be moved quickly.

Just wondering why this seller is willing to deal with the hassle, if he could move it in a day or two on Craigslist.

I picked up my 95' last month in "nearly" (not really) mint condition. Small dent in the hood, needs a windshield, has after market 15 X 8 (?) rims w/ 30" BFG's, a new Smitty top, 4 cyl, 135K miles for $3500.



Deals can be had, even in Cali.
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:21 AM
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Here it is, located in Wisconsin where it drives on the property not the roads. The stuff on the hood is actually moss, that wipes right off. There is some on the rear fender, too. The seller is Will, at Wally's 4x4 Sales. I have known him for years. I think I'll forge ahead and get it, have a mechanic go through it first, though. I understand the risks in buying a 27 year old vehicle, but the point is excellent and practical, that problems may develop. I've had 5 IHC Scouts, 1962 - 1973, a Bronco, 1960 Wllys, 2 CJ 7s and 3 first gen. RX 7s. Also 2 TJs, a ZJ and XJ and a LIberty (don't remember which "J" the Lib is called) but they don't count because they were not project vehicles. This is the newest project vehicle I have started out with. I suppose "Mint" is a relative term. It is the best condition I have gotten as a project.
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:29 AM   #13
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I am no expert on "mint" but if that's mint than damn mines pretty close to mint also, mine don't even have the moss
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Old 04-22-2015, 06:36 AM   #14
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Here it is, located in Wisconsin where it drives on the property not the roads. The stuff on the hood is actually moss, that wipes right off. There is some on the rear fender, too. The seller is Will, at Wally's 4x4 Sales. I have known him for years. I think I'll forge ahead and get it, have a mechanic go through it first, though. I understand the risks in buying a 27 year old vehicle, but the point is excellent and practical, that problems may develop. I've had 5 IHC Scouts, 1962 - 1973, a Bronco, 1960 Wllys, 2 CJ 7s and 3 first gen. RX 7s. Also 2 TJs, a ZJ and XJ and a LIberty (don't remember which "J" the Lib is called) but they don't count because they were not project vehicles. This is the newest project vehicle I have started out with. I suppose "Mint" is a relative term. It is the best condition I have gotten as a project.

What's the Wagoneer to the left look like?
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:00 AM
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What's the Wagoneer to the left look like?
Lots of rust.
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:02 AM   #16
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I am no expert on "mint" but if that's mint than damn mines pretty close to mint also, mine don't even have the moss




mine is concurs then.
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Old 04-22-2015, 09:04 AM
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My thought process was that there is not rust at all on the body or frame, and the frame still has the factory paint on it. Good interior, all stock under the hood, springs still seem taut, unmolested anywhere on the YJ. A car wash would remove the moss on the hood and rear fender. Perhaps not mint, but in better shape than any other project I started with. I would appreciate people's input on what all needs to be addressed or should I avoid this YJ. Is there something in the photo that I missed? Here's a pic of the last Jeep I dragged home, maybe now I am starry eyed at anything with an intact body.
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Old 04-22-2015, 09:31 AM
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Having trouble posting pics. I'll try again.
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Old 04-22-2015, 09:51 AM   #19
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I picked up my 95' last month in "nearly" (not really) mint condition. Small dent in the hood, needs a windshield, has after market 15 X 8 (?) rims w/ 30" BFG's, a new Smitty top, 4 cyl, 135K miles for $3500. Deals can be had, even in Cali.
Agreed. Deals can be had. Deals can also be made on the sellers end. My comment was made when I thought this was a "mint" YJ and an interstate sale. Both of which now appear to not be the case.
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Old 04-22-2015, 10:02 AM   #20
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Here it is, located in Wisconsin where it drives on the property not the roads. The stuff on the hood is actually moss, that wipes right off. There is some on the rear fender, too. The seller is Will, at Wally's 4x4 Sales. I have known him for years. I think I'll forge ahead and get it, have a mechanic go through it first, though. I understand the risks in buying a 27 year old vehicle, but the point is excellent and practical, that problems may develop. I've had 5 IHC Scouts, 1962 - 1973, a Bronco, 1960 Wllys, 2 CJ 7s and 3 first gen. RX 7s. Also 2 TJs, a ZJ and XJ and a LIberty (don't remember which "J" the Lib is called) but they don't count because they were not project vehicles. This is the newest project vehicle I have started out with. I suppose "Mint" is a relative term. It is the best condition I have gotten as a project.
Somebody posted about buying this one not too long ago.

This is not what I would consider mint. Mint to me would have been all stock, clean and shiny inside and out. - as in somebody's extra vehicle that has been garage kept for years.

I think all the original replies to jump in were based in similar expectations and should be disregarded on this one.

Now - this one does look like it has potential and $4k may be a reasonable deal. Biggest concern for me would be title and registration since you mentioned it hasn't been used on the roads. After that, if it runs and drives good, fluids check out and is acceptably intact and clean inside and out - $4k isn't bad.
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Old 04-22-2015, 12:31 PM
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Somebody posted about buying this one not too long ago.

This is not what I would consider mint. Mint to me would have been all stock, clean and shiny inside and out. - as in somebody's extra vehicle that has been garage kept for years.

I think all the original replies to jump in were based in similar expectations and should be disregarded on this one.

Now - this one does look like it has potential and $4k may be a reasonable deal. Biggest concern for me would be title and registration since you mentioned it hasn't been used on the roads. After that, if it runs and drives good, fluids check out and is acceptably intact and clean inside and out - $4k isn't bad.

Good points. Thanks all.
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:17 PM   #22
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If it was really that good of a deal it would have been gone two weeks ago when you originally posted you were going to pick it up
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Old 04-24-2015, 07:59 PM   #23
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Here it is, located in Wisconsin....The seller is Will, at Wally's 4x4 Sales.
Wow, wallys is still going? Those guys were always good to me. Last time I was there, back in 1992, I horsetraded a willys flathead core engine for a used bestop for my 87. Only place that had anything used for a YJ, and he had exactly what i needed.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:04 PM   #24
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As far as it being in "mint" condition, jeeps in that neck of the woods are usually just a pile of rust and paint chips. That is "rust belt mint", I'll give you that.

4k is top dollar, but probably worth it. If it runs out OK.

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