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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an '87 YJ that recently had a rod shoot through the engine. My wife and I have wanted to get into weekend wheeling for a while, so we had planned on taking the tired YJ and turning it into the weekender, keeping our TJ's for daily drivers. My mechanic has a 350 Vortec available to put in the YJ. I was talking this over with a friend who told me he has seen Jeeps with the larger engines roll easier. He admitted it made him a bit jealous to think of my old YJ with a 350. I want to wheel, not be an a-hole on the trails. I also want my wife to be safe when we're wheeling (this being a MAJOR concern). Neither of us have done any serious wheeling, but we want to, and have people we can learn from.

With all that said, here is the question: Should I replace the motor with the 350 or with another IL6?

I'll have other questions regarding lifts and such when we actually start the project (after Christmas at least).
 

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I have an uncle who put an eight in his '46 Willys. He takes it to CO twice a year to hunt moose and elk. He likes the fact that the newer fuel injected design is more reliable. I think he just enjoys doing wheelies in a vintage Jeep.

If you're going to lift, I wouldn't make it any more top-heavy than it already is. If it were mine, I'd keep it stock except for the Vortec, and put a sneaky, quiet exhaust on it. Nothing says jerk as much as a loud exhaust, big engine or not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, loud exhaust is not me, no worries there. The only reason for a lift would be for the off roading, not looking to get crazy with that, only practical for wheeling.
 

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If your running the ba-10 5spd.. it will be toast with the 350. So add that to the cost. Also the rear dana 35 should be upgraded as well... Look into a ford 8.8 from a 95 or newer explorer. Not sure on the t-case I think you have a np 207/8. Thus lots to consider besides just the engine...
 

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I find it funny when people are worried about rolling a jeep. A jeep is harder to roll then most vehicles out there. To adding the weight of a 350 it is not much heavier then the I6 that was in there before. No worries there. Your going to lift it and you should stretch the rear atleast if your going to make it just a weekend warrior for the most part. The jeep is a safe vehicle- if you your really want to get into really good wheeling, then I will recommend a good cage. A good cage will save you from a day in the hospital to rolling it back over and running a little different line on the same rock wall/ledge.
 
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