Day 1: The Deed is Done

By | September 2, 2017

Today’s the day.  I now own my dream vehicle.  Ok, sure, it is a little rough around the edges and needs a little love, but it’s beautiful all the same.

I’ve wanted a Jeep Wrangler YJ for a long time.  I’ve even bought a couple in the past with hopes of making at least one of them driveable.  Well, a series of unfortunate events has always seemed to crop up right after the purchase and so each one would be sold or pawned off for one reason or another.

That’s all behind me though because today is the day.  I bought a 1995 Jeep Wrangler and I am NOT EVER selling it… EVER.  It’s my new baby.  I absolutely love it.

The Specs:

  • 1995 Jeep Wrangler YJ
  • 2.5L 4 cylinder Engine
  • Rust… mostly everywhere (holes in both rocker panels, passenger floor, at driver’s rollbar, under all seats front and back, and rotted body mount at rear valence.)
  • Dents… yeah, those too (both front fenders are smashed, front bumper is toast, hood is dented possibly beyond repair)
  • But does it run?  Err… overheats after about 20 minutes.
  • Transmission… it has one.  Doesn’t work great, but at least it’s present.
  • Gas tank leaks
  • Seats are torn
  • Missing bolts in a lot of interesting places
  • The front driver’s side leaf spring is sticking out beyond the bumper.
  • Power steering reservoir is incorrect model and hanging by a zip-tie attached to the air intake that is tied with a bungicord to the front clip support.  (Does this qualify as hanging by a thread?  Here I come Roadkill!)

The WHY that one?

  • Price tag… literally the cheapest one on Craigslist — $1500 purchase price.
  • Clean Title
  • It actually DOES both run and drive, just not very well.  (I was able to drive it up on the car hauler trailer.)
  • It’s all there (I hope)
  • Engine is fuel injected
  • I did the math and while it has many (many) problems, the parts in it that do work are worth more than the purchase price.  (Hard top, full doors, dash/gauges, engine, tires, wheels, etc.)

The Purchase Experience

My wife drove up to Rocky Mount, VA with me by way of Basset, VA (to get the U-Haul).  We drove down the longest single-lane road I’ve been on in a long while… and we drove to the very end.  When the hard surface stopped is where we stopped.  My wife kept asking me if this guy was the Craigslist Killer, but I assured her we would survive.  The guy (read that as “kid”) that I bought it from I don’t think had much of a clue about it.  It was pretty beaten up and really needed a rescue.  The seller said that he put 7,000 miles on it in the 3 years he had owned it and that he mainly used it to drive up and down his long driveway (which joined the hard surface road right where we had parked our U-Haul).

It was definitely an adventure.  Unlike my wife those types of things don’t scare me, they just make me happy.  I guess I identify with the off-the-grid type folks that you usually meet at the end of long single-lane roads like that.  (I’m also not afraid to eat at pretty much any food cart, but that’s a story for another post.)

To make a long story short, we made it home safe and sound and I was able to park the new project in its new home for the foreseeable future.