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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There's a lot of really car/jeep savvy people on here and it made me wonder. What mechanic experience did you have before you bought your jeep?
 

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Ok let's look back. I worked in the repair shop of a car dealer from 1968 until 1981 eventually moving up from a road service mechanic to the assistant service manager managing the car and truck repair shops. After that I went into working in the emergency road service call center for a major truck leasing/rental corporation. We dispatched road service vendors 24/7 to get their trucks back on the road on a timely basis, these ranged from small box trucks to 18 wheelers. From their i oversaw the maintenance and damage repairs for their rent it here leave it there fleet of over 3,000 trucks. When they relocated out of the state I was transferred to manage one of their field facilities in NYC that ran 24 hours Monday thru Friday with the NY Post newspaper delivery trucks being my major customer. Got laid off in 1986 due to a consolidation of facilities and managed to get a job with a major car rental companies maintenance facility running a shop on the second shift with 15-20 mechanics. Then the maintenance manager that over saw their bus fleet at the three NY airports resigned to become an FBI agent so I was promoted to that position and learned how to repair small and full size 40 ft buses helping the bus mechanics keep the fleet rolling. In 1990 the corporate manager that handled the purchasing of new buses for the US resigned and I was promoted to the world HQ to handle that position and set up programs for all non revenue vehicle purchases, they included buses, wreckers, flat beds, cars, vans, etc. in 2012 after 31 years with them I was down sized and replaced with a bean counter. I had just completed the replacement of over 50 million dollars worth of buses and with so many airports consolidating car rental facilities the number of new buses needed in the next 10-12 years was almost non existent. It's been over 2 years and have not had any luck finding a job so I decided to retire and hang out with my rescue dog. Basically I have seen it all and every time I need to work on my jeep, the wife's car, or one of my kids cars I say when will this end. LOL.
 

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Oh, and the reason I drive a wrangler? It's because I like them and at my age no one can tell me what to drive not even the wife. Although my kids would not let me buy a yellow wrangler which is my favorite color.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Very interesting life! That's definitely quite the journey! And not to make you jealous but here's my girlfriends wrangler
 

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Very interesting life! That's definitely quite the journey! And not to make you jealous but here's my girlfriends wrangler
Very nice, mine is stock since I was commuting 100 miles a day and car pooling with two co workers that could not figure out why I drove a wrangler since they were into comfort vehicles. Non jeepers just do not understand us.
 

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Before I got my TJ I knew jack squat about vehicles. I bought an older car and drove it until it died, then sold it for parts to someone. I didn't know ANYTHING about maintenance or upkeep. I had never even changed the oil in any of my cars, let alone TRIED to repair anything that broke. Then, along came my girl, 1998 jeep tj in stone white. Since I've owned her (BTW the ONLY vehicle I've ever agreed to have a car payment for) I've learned a crazy amount about fixing her. So remember, I had never done car repair of ANY type until I owned my jeep and since I've owned her here's some of the things I've done so far, and I'm sure there are things I'm forgetting.
-Complete tune up including
air filter
spark plugs (gapped by me)
rotor
distributor
Engine oil
transmission fluid
-Changed brake line
-Bled brake lines (several times until I got it right)
-changed both o2 sensors
-Repaired hole in muffler
-Added side steps
-Light bar
-repaired Emergency brake
-Added rust paint
-Cleaned AIC
-Removed and thoroughly cleaned the throttle body (WHAT THE CRAP! I actually know what a throttle body is now! hA!)
And learned things I can't believe I now know about how vehicles, and my jeep in paricular, work. Of course it doesn't hurt that I'm under it almost everyday, just to try and learn more about what makes it tick. It seems to me like older Jeeps are just a cool way to learn about vehicles while you drive it. I used to get so stressed about car problems, but sadly (and don't tell my wife) when things break on the jeep, I get kind of excited. Here's to years more "education".:beerdrinking:
 

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Mechanically I can do anything now. Had it 14 years. Brakes were toughest lame stuff I could do as a teen before I got it. Biggest thing it taught me though. Is when I'm in the middle of no where and it looks easy I'll get stuck. When I'm around civilization it makes hard stuff look easy. Go figure. :)
 

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Prior to owning my Wrangler I basically knew how to use a screwdriver and bang shit with a hammer, now I actually have learned a fair amount of mechanical knowledge from working on it. Well that and hanging out with people that live for working on Jeep's but both were pretty helpful
 

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I knew very little about anything mechanical until last year. Then I started realizing how must stuff is easy to fix on my Jeep. I've fixed or repaired most things myself except for replacing the clutch. I recently replaced my entire front steering system last week. Last year I didn't even know what s tie rod end was. This forum and YouTube has taught me many things.
 

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I had limited mechanical experience before my TJ came along. I had worked on all my cars over the years due to poverty and very high miles. (I am a professional musician and drive about 2500 miles a month to gigs and such.)

I only did it because I *had* to. I did not like getting dirty or busting my knuckles. I owned cheap tools that made things more difficult. I lost them repeatedly. But I did very good work once I learned something. I have always had a strong mechanical aptitude but had applied it to other fields, like working in a machine shop, in an electronics assembly shop, repairing musical instruments, etc.

I really started to like working on my vehicles when I got my Volvo 740 in 1999. It was already nine years old. It was prone to all sorts of stupid, niggling problems and had plastics that broke all the time. And repair work was astronomically expensive. I never had to take it in where the bill was not about $800 - every time.

So I started using the WWW for Volvo forums much like WF, I found online suppliers for all this expensive stuff. I learned from my betters on the forum I made my home (the brickboard) and not only got it back into shape but started to improve it, too.

When I replaced the Volvo with the Jeep it was like an epiphany for me, mechanically. The Volvo B230F engine was solid as hell and easy (and fun) to work on. But the set of the car was a PITA love-hate relationship.

The Jeep had almost no rivets! You could take just about everything apart into subassemblies, which could be taken down to their basic parts. If you bought the right tools you could do just about any sort of work at the house, and modding it was a snap. I LOVED it!

I am still a novice mechanic compared to many here on this board. But compared to my friends I am a pro. I have left them in the dust because the TJ makes certain major work fairly simple and accessible. So I am rarely afraid to try something. The removal of that fear of messing up my nice vehicle is mostly gone. I now do things I would have never wanted to do in the past.

I am now wanting to learn to rebuild my block and learn all the electrical stuff because I enjoy the work. This is solely due to the TJ. Had I not purchased it I would never have learned to do so much work on my own.

I have never owned a vehicle that taught me so much. Because of this I will probably always own a TJ. I have so much to learn. But I am off to a solid start thanks to the TJ's inherent repairability, the folks at WF, and YouTube repair videos. (Heh, heh, heh...)
 

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I didn't know very much at all. With past cars I just payed other people to fix any issues we had with the car. Now that I have my jeep if we ever have an issue I call my grandfather and we work on it together and he passes on his knowledge of vehicles. It's pretty great getting to work on it with him.
 

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I have been passing my knowledge to my youngest son, he will most likely inherit my complete tool box. But he is not interested in a wrangler, he bought himself a Volvo S60. But at 25 and on his own he can make his own decisions.
 

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I knew very basic things such as oil changes but didn't understand everything very much. At this point (3 years of jeep ownership) I am now a decent welder, fabricater , overall very very mechanically confident. I feel I can tackle any task any eventually come out on top whether it be axle swaps or rebuilds.
 

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Not much actually. I used to do all my own work (from some body work to oil changes to things like air conditioning). I don't any more. I now live in a townhome and have no room to work on anything or even store tools - I barely have enough tools to fill my jerry can tool box and a top tool chest.

I liked it when I did it, but I don't mind not doing it anymore. 6 years maintenance came with my Sport so I still have over 5 years of things covered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
It's definitely taught me a lot. When I first got it I almost paid a shop 600 o do axle seals. Now I am 100% confident doing it myself. I'm learning fast and a lot. This site and the people help a lot!
 
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