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Lonewolf's 1998 Jeep Wrangler Sport

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
I’m new to the forum but not new to Jeeps I owned a 1974 CJ5 for about 7 years . I tinkered on it here and there and had a lot of fun with it exploring the sierras and daily driving it to and from work when it wasn’t raining too bad
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But as the family grew I knew I needed something that was safer for the kids and was a little easier to drive . I sold the CJ and pretty much regretted it 30 seconds after, but found a good Deal on a 1998 TJ that had a lot of stuff done to it already.

Here is the night I picked it up
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I was really happy with the deal I got on it and it was really clean and had just hit 100000 miles

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I drove it about a month used it to tow the dirt bikes to Carnegie and bounced around at there 4x4 course
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After driving it around I realized the stock 3.07 gears and 33’s were not cutting it so I started looking around for Dana 44s to regear , I struck out with finding anything reasonable so I decided to regear and install Detroit true tracs front and rear so I pulled the axles to have them regeared
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While everything was apart I came into a set 35/1250R15 General m/t ‘s so I sold the BFG’s and bought 4340 shafts for the Dana 35 , I know I’m playing with fire but with a light foot and the true tracs hopefully they last till I can find a affordable 44 to rebuild

So that’s where I’m at now 3.5 RE short arm lift metal cloak fenders and sliders, 4.88 , true tracks and 35s

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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
Nice lookin TJ. How do you like the Metal Cloak fenders?
im happy with them they clear the 35s well and seem really well made plus it makes the 20 year old jeep look a bit newer.

Welcome aboard. I had a 1974 Cj-5 as well. Had it for 13 years. It was my DD and hunting rig. Was a great Jeep with the 258 and 4 speed.
Yea i was really happy with it , it had the 304 with all the edelbrock stuff and the 3 speed. It got around town really well but the the low gearing wasnt really there so i mostly stuck to fireroads in it.
 
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
So to update my build a bit I drove it to and from work for awhile like this and I changed the gear oil and replaced the stock axles with my chromoly ones which starts a chain reaction of stuff as shown in this thread

So after that snafu I decided to go with 30 spline axles and a Detroit locker. The difference in axles is impressive
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While waiting for UPS to drop off my locker I replaced the axle seals and bearings , measured the backlash and removed the true trac so I can clean everything up and would be prepared for
Reinstalling everything.
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After I got that done I removed the gas can holder from the rear bumper because it contacted the window every time it was opened. Since I lost the light mount from the gas can rack I welded a bracket on the spare tire mount and mounted it there. It is well protected and out of the way and is installed with a wing nut so it’s easy to remove to access the spare
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
So the new 30 spline Detroit was way off , the stock shims were about 1/4 in too loose so I ordered a set of the Yukon shims and decided to tackle setting the backlash and preload myself. It was pretty simple just time consuming. When I pulled the truetrac it measured at 6 thousandths and after what seemed like 30 tries and multiple shim mixups I got it to 7 thousandths with a good bearing preload that I was happy with.
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I put 30 miles on it today and there is zero bearing noise or gear whine just the occasional pop from the Detroit . I flexed it on a K rail and found I need to trim a bit from the back of the rear fender openings but other than that it should be ready for some summer trips
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Alex01

Itching For Some Rocks
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Our jeeps are almost twins. Mine also started life with a dana 30/35 with 3.08 gearing. I Would have been sad selling that CJ also. That was one nice rig. Black one looks good to. :p
 
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
Our jeeps are almost twins. Mine also started life with a dana 30/35 with 3.08 gearing. I Would have been sad selling that CJ also. That was one nice rig. Black one looks good to. :p

Thanks, yea I think my daughter was the most bummed about selling the CJ she liked how loud and open it was and I had owned it her entire 3 years of life haha . But I feel a lot safer toting her around in the TJ. Did you have to trim your rear metal cloak fenders to fit the 35s? Or did you run longer bumpstops .
 

Alex01

Itching For Some Rocks
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Thanks, yea I think my daughter was the most bummed about selling the CJ she liked how loud and open it was and I had owned it her entire 3 years of life haha . But I feel a lot safer toting her around in the TJ. Did you have to trim your rear metal cloak fenders to fit the 35s? Or did you run longer bumpstops .
I know the feeling. My older girl is still mad at me for selling our red YJ, 4 cyclinder 3.08 gearing and 33s, I can't say I feel the same way though. She was around 6 when we sold it.

I bought the mod fit rear MC fenders so I had to trim a bit for the installation. I'm not able to fully tuck the rears due to having to bump for the shock body. I've been working on dialing in the fronts lately. My current plan for the front is to raise the shock mount in order to run 11 inch shocks while still maximizing up-travel. Out-boarding the rear is a bit outside my comfort zone at the moment but I've been doing lots of research on it lately so maybe one day I'll pull the trigger.
 
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
I know the feeling. My older girl is still mad at me for selling our red YJ, 4 cyclinder 3.08 gearing and 33s, I can't say I feel the same way though. She was around 6 when we sold it.

I bought the mod fit rear MC fenders so I had to trim a bit for the installation. I'm not able to fully tuck the rears due to having to bump for the shock body. I've been working on dialing in the fronts lately. My current plan for the front is to raise the shock mount in order to run 11 inch shocks while still maximizing up-travel. Out-boarding the rear is a bit outside my comfort zone at the moment but I've been doing lots of research on it lately so maybe one day I'll pull the trigger.

sounds good, It looks like I don't have the mod fit fenders so I will just cut an inch at a time till it looks clear, do you have a sideways shot of how the Mod fits look? I looked at your build thread and it does look like our jeeps started very similar. Ill be closely following how you setup your front.
 

Alex01

Itching For Some Rocks
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sounds good, It looks like I don't have the mod fit fenders so I will just cut an inch at a time till it looks clear, do you have a sideways shot of how the Mod fits look? I looked at your build thread and it does look like our jeeps started very similar. Ill be closely following how you setup your front.
I can take some photos / measurements today when I get home. I'm only working a half day today so you don't need to wait long.
For now here is the photo MC supplies
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The rear bottom 2 bolts appear to be in the same location on both style fenders. Seems like with a cut off wheel it wouldn't be to difficult to make yours the same size as the mod cut.
 
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
I can take some photos / measurements today when I get home. I'm only working a half day today so you don't need to wait long.
For now here is the photo MC supplies
View attachment 97107

The rear bottom 2 bolts appear to be in the same location on both style fenders. Seems like with a cut off wheel it wouldn't be to difficult to make yours the same size as the mod cut.

Yea some measurements at the bolts would be perfect thank you!
 
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Lonewolf

Lonewolf

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 4, 2019
Messages
255
Location
Pittsburg, CA
No problem. I've been tossing around the idea of painting them body color so if you want to stack them side by side to get an exact cut let me know.

If you have them off this weekend I might take you up on that but if not ill just try to measure and connect the dots with an angle grinder
 

Alex01

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If you have them off this weekend I might take you up on that but if not ill just try to measure and connect the dots with an angle grinder
Definitely not this weekend. Went to Monterey with the family.