Just another XJ


The Monday after taking care of the rear brakes, I drove my kid to school in the jeep (2 blocks) and it stalled right after leaving the school drive. (yeah, i was really popular just then).
Got it shoved out of traffic and it restarted with no problem. Traced the problem to a faulty relay. Replaced it and no issues.

Yesterday I had some time to cruise around and put the XJ through it's paces... within reason. Got about 30 miles on it with zero issues.

20180417_151814 by Tim, on Flickr


For the last 9 years my club has been putting on a food drive for local churches and organizations who serve the homeless of our community, called the Flex 4 Food. Basically we break out a RTI ramp and run people's rigs up. Food is provided by When Pigs Fly BBQ and we all hang out and have a good time for a good cause.

I was excited to get the new jeep on the ramp to see how it did... not great, but then I'm not building it for rock crawling. With the sway bar connected I got a 524, the wife's Renegade only got a 328. The event was a lot of fun and a big success in collecting food and cash!

IMG_3305 by Tim, on Flickr
IMG_3300 by Tim, on Flickr

Fresh built long arm kit without shocks
Flexed so much he spit his spring out.
20180429_123225 by Tim, on Flickr

Why not?
IMG_3326 by Tim, on Flickr


I am a very lucky man! My lovely wife of 26 amazing years is supporting (enabling) me in my jeep addiction. My new lift will be arriving this week! Pix will happen when I get a chance to install it!

It's good to be loved (enabled)! ;)


So... after a parts conundrum, the lift should be going on this weekend. Last weekend after a crazy work week, I finally got time to install the lift. Popped the boxes open only to discover the leaf springs never made it here.

Email after email bounced back and forth, and finally the replacement lift is getting delivered today.

Looks like it'll be a busy weekend. BD


New member
Love the xj man!! Mine is my baby. Mine was built as a crawler first but slowly making in it into a very reliable overland rig. Drawer system is coming very soon to mine as well.

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk


Thanks. Nice! Got pix of your rig?

I'm still debating on the drawer system. Not sure I want to add a bunch of weight in the name of organization, and compromise it's capacity. Internal debate... it goes on.

The lift kit arrived today! The box was ripped, but everything was in it. Good times ahead.


New member
That's mine. And ya I have a 2-door and always have the back seat folded down so I would do a drawer system all the way to the front seats and put a barrier to keep the dogs in the back. That way all my gear isn't rolling around/more organized and dogs can be comfy.

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk


Nice looking setup!

A couple friends and I got together yesterday to install the Zone Off Road 3" lift, now that all the parts had shown up.
Amazingly there were one 2 broken bolts... one on each of the upper back shock mounts.
20180520_145550 by Tim, on Flickr

"Cheater" lift in the back with an add-a-leaf. Didn't have to mess with the spring or shackle bolts.
20180520_153007 by Tim, on Flickr

Half way done...
I was tempted to leave it like this for a while just to turn heads, but chose a better path.
2018052095154626 by Tim, on Flickr

We wrapped up the job in just about 5 hours.
20180520_171815 by Tim, on Flickr

2 Mountain Dews and only 1 slice of pizza to fuel the job. The lift came together nicely, and the ride is completely different from stock. A couple of the shocks we pulled off were blown to the ride quality was GREATLY improved.


Taking advantage of a sunny evening with nothing planned, i was able to extend the front sway bar links.
20180524_173855 by Tim, on Flickr

Recycling parts left over from my CJ, I cut the links and added some heavy duty tubing, welded it up and made it shine.
IMG_20180524_192927_590 by Tim, on Flickr

The test drive was great, and I didn't tip over once.

Next... lowering the t-case and track bar relocation bracket.


New member
I never understood why anyone would lower the t-case? I have a 3.5" lift with 33"s on a 96 and same green as yours but 4 door. I didn't do a hack-n-tap and my driveline hasn't slipped out once. I have taken it rock crawling all over AZ and still no issues.



The 3" lift netted something closer to 4. I don't know for sure because I didn't measure before and after. Regardless, the lift created some severe drive line angles that needed to be addressed. If it were a matter of the shaft slipping off the output, i would have left it alone. Especially considering I do not do rock crawling any more and the suspensions will not be flexing that much.

For now the drop is an economical way of dealing with a potentially damaging problem. Over time the angles will be addressed differently.

Trust me, I would rather have left it in the stock position!


I knocked some of the webs off the trailer project over the last few days.
My trailer, Scrappy (named after being built primarily out of scraps), is based off a Tractor Supply 4x6 tilt utility trailer. I did a spring over swap, added wheel adapters to run 5x5.5 rims (to match my previously owned Samurai). Last fall I started enclosing it, wanting to stay with the name it earned, i procured a $5 aluminum topper and some steel (which was once a frame for wooden bleachers at a local college), the wood are scraps from the tool boxes we used to use in our work trucks.
The plan currently is to add a couple small doors, and a double lower door in the rear.
Some exterior storage points will be added, lights will be adjusted to be more visible and the front marker lights will be converted to LED to match the rear.
Interior and camp lighting will all be LED with a solar chargers. Nothing elaborate, but certainly effective.
The bed platform will be easily removable with tons of storage underneath.
I also plan on insulating the topper portion, and lining the interior with recycled political signs to brighten it up and make it a little easier to keep clean.

Costs so far...
Trailer $250
Tongue extension $25
Spring over lift $10 for spring perches
Spacers $50 for 4, 2 were donated to a friend for a similar project
Aluminum topper $5
30" Rims and tires $20 (includes a matching spare)
Wood - Free
Steel - Free
Aluminum tread plating - free

2018-07-17_07-23-39 by Tim, on Flickr

2018-07-17_07-23-29 by Tim, on Flickr

And it still tilts....


Go figure, I rush to get the trailer usable for the weekend (no pix)
Sit all day in a car show... (no pix)
And spend the evening camping (one pic)

20180804_203138 by Tim, on Flickr

It towed wonderfully, and I've got a list of things that need improvement, or finished.

The jeep performed quite well on the trip out and back... longest drive to date, about 130 miles, mostly paved. Time to start planning things a little further out.

P.S. My trailer is hiding behind the XJ.


Spent a couple hours on Saturday fixing every odd noise the jeep makes by installing a new stereo and speakers.
20180812_153052 by Tim, on Flickr

it sounds so much better than the stock stereo with blown speakers, but now I need to address the failing headliner. Thinking of pulling the board and coating it with bed liner or other thick paint... I'll have to do some research before jumping in.