81 Scrambler Rebuild

AZRic

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Glendale
State
AZ
#1
Well ive lurked here long enough... Learned and watched numerous rebuilds and time to get moving on mine.

I had a 81 Scrambler 25 years ago and put a chevy 350 and auto trans in it and loved it. Then the kids came and the jeep went. Now the kids are gone and i found another 81 that Started out as a old Jeep Tour Company Scrambler that has seen its better days. Total and complete rebuild is definitely needed.

Plan for this build is a street Queen as i have another off road toy. Going with a 5.3 and 4l60e auto trans, NP241C transfer case. Found some wide track axles and put 4.10 gears in them. Only running 33 inch tires... Also did the one piece rear axle. It came with a half cab in decent shape plus i have a new soft top ready to go.

Bought a brand new tub from Overland Willy. Picked up a an old frame from a forum member.

The day i brought it home. IMG_0055.JPG
 
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AZRic

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Glendale
State
AZ
#2
A couple questions for the experienced members. 1) I picked up a 2004 5.3 Flex fuel motor. Should i take it back and get a non flex fuel motor??? 2) Where do you send the harness and computer to be reworked and reprogrammed? 3) Best way to adapt the new gas peddle in. Tons of finished pics out there but im curious as how people actually do this.

Thanks for he info...
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
#3
As for the flex fuel, I say run it. Set the fuel system up for it. If it's available and you like it, pump it in. if you don't you can always run regular gas. I don't see a down side. Not sure where to point you for the harness, I've always done mine myself. As for the gas peddle. Drive by wire I assume? There's all different configurations. You just have to mount it so it comfortable. Mine out of a 2016 Silverado bolted to the firewall with 3 bolts and I had to make a tapered shim from 3/8" at the top to nothing at the bottom.
 

mysunnshine

Legacy Registered User
City
Phoenix
State
AZ
#4
I'd keep the flex fuel engine mostly because of the SS fuel rails and larger injectors. Just make sure to use PTFE hose and not just rubber hose because the ethanol in the fuel out here will kill them in no time. The harness can be purchased aftermarket and we may even have one at the shop. I can do the programming too. :)
 

AZRic

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Glendale
State
AZ
#5
thanks for the inputs.

Eric i will shoot you a text this afternoon...
 

Husker fan

Legacy Registered User
City
Caro
State
MI
#7
I am currently working on a 5.3 swap with an ax 15 trans. For the wiring I sent the harness and computer to Novak. I was pleased with the work they did on the harness so far. I still have a lot of wiring left to do. As far as the gas pedal I have not worked on mounting it yet.
 

IAFFCJ

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
SOA Member
City
Manassas
State
VA
#8
A couple questions for the experienced members. 1) I picked up a 2004 5.3 Flex fuel motor. Should i take it back and get a non flex fuel motor??? 2) Where do you send the harness and computer to be reworked and reprogrammed? 3) Best way to adapt the new gas peddle in. Tons of finished pics out there but im curious as how people actually do this.

Thanks for he info...
1. I would take the advice form the folks above they have the experience to back up those answers up for sure.

2. Lots of options for harness I believe a few folks on here have worked their own. Which gives you the options to route things where you want them rather than someone else's ideas. I sent mine to Jim's performance in Ellicott city Maryland. He asked a ton of questions and cleaned the harness up and programed the computer to work with the thinned out harness. Turnaround time was less than a week.

3. The 5.3 that I just put in my scrambler is a 2004 out of a Tahoe and the fuel pedal was a big crazy curved thing that was just not going to work for me. I chopped it all up and welded it back together in a position that worked for me and got me full travel. Mounting is just two through bolts in the general location of the original pedal.

IMG_2902.jpg
IMG_2903.jpg
 

AZRic

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Glendale
State
AZ
#13
Getting started on the engine wire harnes. So my question is for any Arizona people....What do i need to keep on the 5.3 wire harness to have it pass emissions? I plan on keeping the 2 front O2 sensors but what else? Thanks.
 

Ron84cj

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
West Bend
State
WI
#14
How do you guys do emmisions out there? Do they plug in the scanner or just run it on the sniffer? If they plug in then you will need to keep the rear 02 sensors as well. Since you are staying automatic there's really not much you need to weed out. Check out Lt1swap.com. If you are considering doing your own harness, then that site will be your best friend (besides here of course). I suck at wiring and that site got me through it just fine. The few questions I did have Randyzzz on here helped me out.
 

walkerhoundvm

Typical Know-it-all
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Cave Creek
State
AZ
#15
I just remember a sniffer on a dyno - which surprised me, I don't remember them doing the dyno in Colorado. Too risky on an old vehicle or something?
 

sdsupilot

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
OKC
State
OK
#18
http://www.car-part.com/

Since you are going LS, I would search for a 1990-91 Suburban, Blazer. If you do go with a 1990+ be aware that you wont be able to use the factory speedo. They have the speed sensor where the Speedo would be (that means you wont need a separate VSS). 1989 will also work, but will have provisions for the cable drive speedo vs speed sensor. I found (and am using) an NP241C from an 89, but you need a VSS with this option. You can find those from Howell and many others.

I am running the NP241C SYE from JB Conversions. Supposedly I got one of the last ones from the last batch, there may be a month wait now. Install was easy, just get good snap ring pliers.
 

AZRic

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Glendale
State
AZ
#20
Well its been awhile and i'm finally re-motivated thanks to walerhoundvm getting me back on track and some free parts...(y)(y)

So heres my progress so far. IMG_1099.JPG
 
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