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Project cheap jeep.

8077 Views 29 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Kyle
Me and a buddie decided to see how cheap we could buy and lift a cherokee. He had some parts lieing around and so did I so we set out to buy and build a xj as cheap as possible and as fast as possible. He bought the xj for a whopping $300.00 a 89 2dr with leaking injectors and no tail pipe and lots of original rust. Be advised that we are building a trail rig not a DD so some of are lift parts might make some snarl there noses. This is a test just to see how cheap it can be done. Here she is when she came in. She has been dubbed "The cream puff".

The front lift is 2 inch lift springs off a F150, Gave us about 7inches of lift and we used lift shocks from a prior Ranger project. We redrilled the track bar and extended the swaybar links with pieces from the rear swaybar before we junked it. Total cost for front lift was $0 because we had it all laying in one shop or the other.

The rear we used 2 leafs (per side) from some old 1/2 ton chevy rear springs he had laying around and 3 inch blocks from Advance Auto. We made a homeade T-case drop from some 1inch box tubing and we cut off the rear shock mounts and welded them back on the top and reused the stock shocks. We took the rear brake block loose from the axle and made a homeade extender to make the rear brake line long enough. With the rear done were at $330.00. I also relocated the flares and folded the quarters so we needed bolts and some undercoating. Notice the front pics after I move the flares up. This time I used the right front flare on the left side and the left side on the right. I actually had to cut the notch in it by flipping them instead of having the hole where the body line is.

We topped the build out with a set of half bald 31 swampers he had in the back room and now were ready to build bumpers. After new injector O rings and plugs and some new oil and filter were at a whopping $390.00 on this build. I have read alot on cheap xj lifts but just had to try it myself, Were digging up some metal for the bumpers now so we don't throw are selves overbudget, so hopefully we stay under $500.00 and have it on the trail this weekend to do are own test on it's strengths and weaknesses.
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I'm sure Tom will end up buying some bigger used tires as soon as a cheap set pops up. Just trying to keep it under $500.00 for now. I'm going over today to start the bumpers so I'll get some better pics with it out of the garage.
This jeep is not mine, It's my brother in law Tom''s. Yes I'm stuck doing most of the build because he knows little about xj's, but I don't need another one. I started on the front bumper today, I cut the factory bumper brackets off the factory tow hook straps. I then welded a piece of 1/4 inch steel plate to those to extend them out (remember were using what we got). I then welded a piece of 2x2 box between those, and I'll bring 2x2 pieces out to the end then box it like I did the bumper that's now on my wifes jeep. We did it this way because we only had small pieces of box tubing to work with. Actually it's the pieces left off my last bumper. I hope to show with this build that anyone can afford to build a xj, I can't even touch a running wrangler in this area for less than $2,000 stock.

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Thats cool. Weld diffs ??? ya??
Here's the finished project, 1 week and $450.00 later. Still needs the stinger put on the front bumper and a fuel line fixed but I'm done with this one, he can handle the rest.

and here's the cream puff when we got it

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Here's a few pics from it's maiden voyage yesterday, didn't get any action shots cause my batteries died early in the day and my son stole my extra batties for his gameboy. I will say it flexed great with the f150 coils and the only casuality was a rear shock mount.

The green 2 dr is the one I built and traded off to Junkyard dog back in the spring, a friend of Smith bought it last weekend. So I actually built all 3 of these xj's. Here's a pic of it when I was building it

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He bought a cj7, and he's getting started on it.
Here's a pic flexing with the f150 coils on the front, did alittle better than I thought it would. The open diffs were still hard to overcome though, the ride is stiff but not something that is unbearable if you just want to get by with a cheap woods buggie.

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