As some of you may know, I have been looking for a Daily Driver replacement for my ‘99 for a while.
My 1999 Grand Cherokee Limited (WJ)
My WJ has some serious issues. I’ve had major issues with both its front and rear brakes.
I paid big $$$ and installed updated Mopar rotors (are suppose to correct rotor warpage)
with Stillen cross drilled rotors and Stillen pads.
I still have rotor warpage.
I have had the front hubs replaced multiple times.
Bushings and the ball joint for the rear suspension needs replaced; basically the rear suspension assembly needs rebuilt.
When going around a curve, like an Interstate exit ramp, the rear of the WJ will fishtail and get squirrelly.
Other smaller, but annoying problems, like the A/C, heated leather seats and the several stereo speakers do not work.
The rear door gaskets are shot and leaks wind/water.
In August, I was T-Boned and the drivers door and front fenders were damaged.
The door will shut and latch, but it badly bowed and has a 2 inch gap around the top.
Its 4.0L I6 runs great.
1982 Jeep J10
So, while looking, I found an excellent deal for a 1982 J10 pickup on Craigslist,
not far from my parents and my wife’s parents home.
The seller was a widow and it was her late husband’s truck.
He passed away in September and it has sat in the driveway, only used by a neighbor once to haul a tiller.
This J10 is powered by a AMC 360 V8 and is backed by a TF727 and NP219.
Some of its amenities are: A/C (converted to R134), cruise, tilt wheel and rear sliding glass window.
Not mounted, but included is a factory brush bar and the original Muscle Bar grill and shell.
It has power windows and door locks, but I wonder if the doors came from a Wagoneer,
for it sports a Pignose grill from a Wagoneer.
It has burgundy interior, with a super nice black dash pad, black sports steering wheel and black A/C vents/controls.
Its burgundy head liner is in nice shape
The burgundy passenger door panel is in okay condition while the driver’s door panel is missing.
The only original seat is the driver’s side black and grey clothe bucket and is in fair shape.
The passenger seat is a very nice maroon clothe seat from a van and its mate for the driver’s seat was included.
Its long bed is covered with a white truck cap.
I spoke with the owner a few times on the phone, made a deposit and arranged for a pickup, December 28 at 1:00PM.
She called a few days before the pickup to let me know that she drove around the block and it was running rough.
She told me that after I saw it, that if I did not want it, that I could back out and she would refund my deposit.
I arrived on time, to discover that what I thought was a dirty white truck,
was really a black truck that the outside had sprayed primer gray. (I like black!)
It was nearly rest free, with some rust in the outside bed seam, and a couple of small spots on the lower fenders.
The seam at the bottom of the doors has rusted open.
It started fine, with a slight rough idle.
After the transaction, I drove down to the local Go-mart for a small bit of gas (high price)
and discovered some vacuum lines laying loose.
I found a screw in the cab, plugged the hose feeding all the others and the idle smoothed right out.
I drove from Fairmont, WV to Weston, WV where I filled up with gas at Sheetz.
I left Weston, where at near mile marker 85, I was following a red Chevy Colbalt.
In the passing lane was a tan-ish minivan and my wife was following in our KIA.
I was thinking what a good deal I made and how well this truck was running, how nice it rode, tracked straight,
when the red Colbalt, changed lanes, sorta cutting off the minivan, and continued onto the median.
When the Colbalt’s wheels dropped off the inside lane shoulder,
the driver jerked the wheel back to the right, lost control and shot back across the Interstate and into the guard rail.
The collision with the guardrail bounced the Colbalt right in my path.
I saw it coming, applied the brakes, but it was to late.
I hit the Colbalt square in the drivers door.
I limped the J10 down to the rest area and walked back to the crash site, where three WVDOT trucks had stopped to assist.
The driver was a middle aged female and surprisingly was not hurt, as she only complained of a headache.
EMT and VFD arrived, then we all stood in the now rain as we waited for the law enforcement to show up.
The other driver waited in a WVDOT truck.
The Lewis County Sheriff Deputy filled out the accident report, charged the other driver with Failure to Maintain Control
and for the fault of the accident.
The distance, right at 50 miles from where I picked up the J10 to the accident site.
Time, about 2 hours.
50 miles and 2 hours! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to me!
I am such a major loser!
The J10's passenger side fender is pealed back.
The passenger side corner of the hood and radiator core support in the headlight area are hurt bad.
The radiator core support from the radiator to the driver side is fine.
The hood is jammed to the back and to the left.
It will not open and I'm sure it will need to be cut off.
The worst looking part is the axle is pushed back on the passenger side about 2 inches
But the underneath is fine: the frame is not bent; steering assembly is fine; the spring is fine.
The Deputy allowed me to park the J10 in rest area for the weekend.
Today, my father and I went back to dolly home the J10.
While upon the Dolly, I saw where the collision caused the passenger side front spring shackle to be rotated up,
instead of hanging down like on the driver's side.
All it would take would be to somehow ‘pop’ the shackle back in its normal position
and the front end mechanicals would be (should be) fine.
It still runs fine and I drove it up and off the Dolly.
It is parked at my parents house, waiting on the Insurance adjuster to come out and check out the damage.
I fear I will be in for a fight to have my J10 not to be declared totaled, but have it repaired.