The Black Moon

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
So I’m finally going to start working on my TJ so I figured I should start a build thread. I am having a new cat welded in today, and have ordered the ZJ swap for the steering. I took the milk jugs off a couple days after buying it. I ripped up one of the flairs a few years ago, so I just pulled them all off. I kind of like the look, so I might just turn the flairs into deletes to clean up the appearance. I have painted the headlight bezels and sway bar valence flat black. That’s all I have I done to it so far. I’m starting with maintenance that I need to do, and then will start all the mods. It will be a slow paced build as I can’t do a lot of work all the time. I’ll post up a picture soon of how it’s currently sitting.
 
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JimLee

Active Member
Here’s an old picture, but not much has changed. I ripped out the tow behind system, painted the bezels and valence black.
View attachment 374749
I was just eyeballing a TJ for sale the other day, guy wanted way to much for it, but I see one in my future. My dumb ass buddy (He's a kyle) traded his TJ in on a Bronco after I spent a year working on it, now I want one.
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
I like it. Not too complicated or computer controlled. Not a lot of frills. I have to watch out for PCM issues and OPDA problems, but I’m changing the OPDA out in the next few weeks preemptively. There isn’t anything I can do for the PCM problem just wait and see if it happens. Then swap it out.
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
Here’s how she sits right now. Just got home from having a new bank one cat welded in. Here’s hoping that damn MIL doesn’t come back on!
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Sgt_USMC

Active Member
I’m hoping while I’m in Fl I can find someone with a plasma cutter to cut those tow bar mounts off. The things are very poorly welded on and welded everywhere they could put the stick inside and outside. 🤬 So I can’t just cut the welds.
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
So the next month or so is going to be mostly maintenance/upgrading. I’m doing most myself save for the coolant flush at the dealership and the engine oil change at a lube rack I trust. I have to get this done before my wife, pup and I drive out to Fl. I’ll be staying out there for a while so no real truck trails or rock crawls to test the future mods on. 😢 Upside: I will have a huge garage to do mods in and store my top when take it off!

Here’s what is on the list for right now:

Transmission fluid and filter
Diff fluid for both
Transfer case oil
Coolant flush (dealership)
Engine oil (lube rack)
Radiator cap (mine just started leaking a little🤦‍♂️)
OPDA swap
ZJ steering upgrade

Here’s what I have done so far:

A/C evacuated and recharged (for the wife)
(23 April ‘22)

New bank 1 cat welded in
(2 May ‘22)
 
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Sgt_USMC

Active Member
The adjuster sleeves have arrived. This upgrade should take a lot of the slop out of the steering due to old joints, and the PO not hitting any grease points. E53F4DF9-FD1A-435A-AB48-2FA7897A1874.jpeg
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
I also might have a line on a set of 2” lift coils and shocks from a friend. He’s going higher and has only put 10k on these coils and shocks. I doubt I’ll use the shocks, I’ll just buy some Rancho 5000s. Saves me some money, can’t complain about that.
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
I’ll be painting them either tomorrow or Friday. I’ll give it all a day to cure and then install time!
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
Sadly, medical issues and the honey do list has held me up. I have taped off the boots and threads. Will hopefully have time to paint them on Friday. Aiming for install a day or two after that.
 

Sgt_USMC

Active Member
I got some time today so I cleaned, prepped, and painted the tie rod, tie rod ends and drag link. I used self etching primer, then several thin to light medium coats of black high temp enamel. The adjuster sleeves came painted, but I’m probably going to scuff them and hit them with the same paint just to make it all look nice. I’ll let the paint cure for a few days while I get some other stuff done. I’m aiming to install sometime early next week (if my injuries don’t flair up). 4EB57ED9-71C9-43A2-BA02-FFE550F554CD.jpeg
 
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