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Old February 20th, 2008, 09:52 AM   #1
MudOnTheTires
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Default 94 ZJ budget build

Hey guys,
I don't post here alot but I am on here pretty much all day. Thought I would post up my small build.
It's not that exciting, but over the last 6 weeks I have been on a mission to build a reliable trail rig on a budget. I started with a 94 Grand Cherokee I drove home for $500. It's nothing hardcore but it will be fun and reliable (i hope).

It started with this....


Couldn't wait to get working on it, my budget boost was already in the mail so to kill time I cut the sway bar end links and took some poser shots..



The the 2inch budget boost got here so I pulled it into the shop to work on it. First off though, I had to get approval from my son that this vehicle suited him..


After Jacob's approval the lift went on. I tore the front bumper halfway off posing out in the woods, who cares, I didn't need it anyways...


Now I had lift and no tires. I ordered high tech retread's 31x10.50 muds from Treadwright. Had to wait 2 weeks on backorder for them to ship. In the meantime, I pulled the carpet out and fixed a little rust on the floor, as well as mounting my cb.
Last night I got the tires mounted. The rear end is getting welded Friday, and then it is ready to roll.
Here are some pics from this morning....






I'll get some better pics when it isn't all snow covered.

So I added up my money spent and I think I did pretty well...
Jeep $500
Trailer $500
CB radio FREEBIE
Tires $300
Lift $65
Welded rear $30
TOTAL $1395
Not bad if I do say so myself.


Thanx for looking,

-Sean
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Old February 20th, 2008, 09:58 AM   #2
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Looks good Sean. I think your son is ready to drive

I had a lot of fun wheeling my ZJ when it was on 31's, locked in the rear. Covered a lot miles with it in the woods.
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Old February 20th, 2008, 10:02 AM   #3
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Looks good Sean. I think your son is ready to drive

I had a lot of fun wheeling my ZJ when it was on 31's, locked in the rear. Covered a lot miles with it in the woods.
Thanx! He is the main reason I got rid of my Toyota truck and got something the whole fam could ride in.

While I won't rule the block with a small lift and 31's, I can learn alot in this vehicle about how to wheel. My plan is to master this setup before I go bigger. Then when I step it up I am more set to handle it. I am building this jeep in stages and doing so by watching for good deals on control arms and stuff. Eventually I wanna be about 6 inches of lift on 33's locked front and rear, different axles of course.


-Sean
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Old February 20th, 2008, 10:20 AM   #4
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I don't have any old parts anymore from my ZJ or I'd help you out on some cheap used lift parts. Keep up the good work on the build and enjoy the time wheelin' with the little one, they grow quick. Really quick
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Old February 20th, 2008, 10:39 AM   #5
Dave Kerwin
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what was wrong with it that you paid 500 for it?

nice budget build!
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Old February 20th, 2008, 10:43 AM   #6
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Nuthin wrong with it, I drove it home! I traded a set of 20 inch wheels off my Suburban that I had $500 invested. This belonged to my friend's parents. It wouldn't start one day so they just parked it and it sat for 2 months. I went over, put gas in it, and it cranked right off! Turns out the gas gauge shows 1/4 tank when it is really empty.
It was in an accident and totalled out but all that damage was fixed. That was 3 years ago or longer so technically it has a rebuilt salvage title.
I don't wanna pay for license or insurance though so I don't even have it titled in my name. Maybe someday but not anytime soon. That's why I bought the trailer.

-Sean
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Old February 21st, 2008, 09:15 AM   #7
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Looks good Sean, that will be a great family 4x4, v8 or super 6 ? transfer case ? what did you use for shocks ? and let us know how those tires work too.

Brian
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Old February 21st, 2008, 09:31 AM   #8
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Looks good Sean, that will be a great family 4x4, v8 or super 6 ? transfer case ? what did you use for shocks ? and let us know how those tires work too.

Brian
Hey there,

This jeep has the super 6. Not sure on the transfer case (it's not the awd one). I am currently still on stock shocks so I won't flex as well as I could. As for the tires, I went with these because my buddy had them on his XJ. They were absolutely AMAZING! For the money they grip like crazy and wear extremely well. I was gonna go with swampers but couldn't see the reason to spend the extra money. In fact, the XJ I am talking about was Derrick's (DERRICK is his name on here). I think he sold it to another guy on here too.
Anyways, he went everywhere I would ever wanna go with those tires and had zero problems.

-Sean
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Old February 21st, 2008, 09:51 AM   #9
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nice build on a budget!
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Old February 21st, 2008, 09:58 AM   #10
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Good to see another ZJ on the trails! Yeah, that bumper cover is just a waste of plastic. If you don't know, and want a ton of good tech on Grands, go to mallcrawlin.com. More hardcore stuff, but if you are dedicating it to trails only, lots of info and directions you can take.
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Old February 21st, 2008, 10:10 AM   #11
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Hey Sean, your buddy that ran those tires on his XJ - did he also run them on the street ?

thanks, Brian
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Old February 21st, 2008, 10:36 AM   #12
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You can also put the stock front springs in the rear and buy some Ebay 3.5"-4" front lift springs. That's what I did on mine.
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Old February 21st, 2008, 11:04 AM   #13
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You can also put the stock front springs in the rear and buy some Ebay 3.5"-4" front lift springs. That's what I did on mine.
That's one avenue I am thinkin. I wanna still keep the spacers in when I do that so I will need control arms as well. I figure if I run this setup this year and collect parts, I can step up to 33's and stuff next year on the bigger lift. That is unless a good deal on a CJ for sale/trade comes up.
My master plan is to run this awhile then get into a cj. My dream jeep is a CJ with a 350 chevy in between the rails.

-Sean
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Old February 21st, 2008, 11:31 AM   #14
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You and steveo are now twins in the ZJ department. Just dont act like him. Oh and nice looking buget build. I wish i had your control when it comes to building things.
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Old February 21st, 2008, 11:43 AM   #15
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Oh I wish I had control. My problem isn't control, it's money....all of it is wrapped up in this.....

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Old February 21st, 2008, 01:42 PM   #16
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FYI, mine death wobbled like crazy after I just replaced the springs. The track bars were pulling against each other, and the alignment was off. It rode like shit on pavement until these items were addressed.
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