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ATX '83 Restoration Project

jscarth99

Basic User
Member
City
Austin
State
TX
Background...
I bought my jeep 28 years ago as my first vehicle and drove it all through high school and college (10 hours each way!). It was a great budget car and it has never been worth ($) to anyone else what it was worth to me, so i kept it even though it has sat parked for years at a time over the past 20 years. She still runs, but not well. I babied the Carter Carb for years then finally replaced it with a Webber 32/36. That worked ok for a while but then got finicky and it wouldn't start reliably (eventually found the Nutter Bypass and that helped a ton).

Regardless, I figure it is time to get her running and looking good again. I'll try to post updates with my progress. I'm very open to thoughts and suggestions from those of you that have been down this road before. I'm not planning to go crazy with the rebuild and I'd like to keep it looking mostly stock but with more power and most importantly reliable.

Plans:
I already replaced the brakes (rotors, drums, and new brake booster - WOW! it stops now!)
Bodywork (starting with floor pans and minor rust in the bed)
Engine - Thinking 350 or LS, but definitely fuel injected
Transmission - It came stock from the factory with Automatic Transmission. (any thoughts from the community on keeping auto vs. changing to Manual?)
Repaint (probably frame off)
Wheels/Tires

Sounds simple, right?
 

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jscarth99

Basic User
Member
City
Austin
State
TX
Not quite finished cutting out the floor pan, but this shows some of the under structure that you have to deal with.
 

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jscarth99

Basic User
Member
City
Austin
State
TX
Bought the Key Parts floor pan from Quadratec. It is not an exact match but really dang close. Trimmed out areas that didn't need to be replaced and left edges in areas that I thought would be easier to fit and weld. Will need to fab a small piece for the corner under the console area. Not too bad for a Sunday morning's effort.
 

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Chamba

Not obsessed: focused.
Member
SOA Member
City
Vero Beach
State
FL
I'll pipe up since you asked: automatics are for boring modern cars, Cadillacs and Lincolns. Manuals are fun to drive and a pleasure to wheel.... just like Jeeps.

You'll have to put a hydraulic clutch in anyway to put an AX15 or NV4500 in and you'll need to use a YJ pedal tree anyway for that so what transmission it came with originally is almost irrelevant.

Another benefit to a manual is the theft deterrent it offers given most car theft today is done by folks who have likely never driven anything why three pedals.

I also believe that converting an automatic Jeep to a manual is just the right thing to do. Let's face it; with the doors off, Jeeps just look plain silly with only two pedals.

Great story. Where did you and the scrambler grow up and go to university? Do you have any pictures of it back in the 90s? Did she have a name?
 
Last edited:

bigwalton

Alaskan Postal nutjob
FORUM MANAGER
SOA Member
City
Dexter
State
MI
Background...
I bought my jeep 28 years ago as my first vehicle and drove it all through high school and college (10 hours each way!). It was a great budget car and it has never been worth ($) to anyone else what it was worth to me, so i kept it even though it has sat parked for years at a time over the past 20 years. She still runs, but not well. I babied the Carter Carb for years then finally replaced it with a Webber 32/36. That worked ok for a while but then got finicky and it wouldn't start reliably (eventually found the Nutter Bypass and that helped a ton).

Regardless, I figure it is time to get her running and looking good again. I'll try to post updates with my progress. I'm very open to thoughts and suggestions from those of you that have been down this road before. I'm not planning to go crazy with the rebuild and I'd like to keep it looking mostly stock but with more power and most importantly reliable.

Plans:
I already replaced the brakes (rotors, drums, and new brake booster - WOW! it stops now!)
Bodywork (starting with floor pans and minor rust in the bed)
Engine - Thinking 350 or LS, but definitely fuel injected
Transmission - It came stock from the factory with Automatic Transmission. (any thoughts from the community on keeping auto vs. changing to Manual?)
Repaint (probably frame off)
Wheels/Tires

Sounds simple, right?
Dude, this is awesome. Stories like this are exactly why this place exists! I'm gifting you a year's membership on the forum so you can add more than one photo per post. :bacon: can't wait to see it progress.
 

jscarth99

Basic User
Member
City
Austin
State
TX
Dude, this is awesome. Stories like this are exactly why this place exists! I'm gifting you a year's membership on the forum so you can add more than one photo per post. :bacon: can't wait to see it progress.
Wow! And thank you very much!!! I've loving this community already!!!
 

jscarth99

Basic User
Member
City
Austin
State
TX
I'll pipe up since you asked: automatics are for boring modern cars, Cadillacs and Lincolns. Manuals are fun to drive and a pleasure to wheel.... just like Jeeps.

You'll have to put a hydraulic clutch in anyway to put an AX15 or NV4500 in and you'll need to use a YJ pedal tree anyway for that so what transmission it came with originally is almost irrelevant.

Another benefit to a manual is the theft deterrent it offers given most car theft today is done by folks who have likely never driven anything why three pedals.

I also believe that converting an automatic Jeep to a manual is just the right thing to do. Let's face it; with the doors off, Jeeps just look plain silly with only two pedals.

Great story. Where did you and the scrambler grow up and go to university? Do you have any pictures of it back in the 90s? Did she have a name?
Thanks for the input/feedback! I'll definitely take all that into consideration!

The Jeep (Bessie) and I are originally from the Texas Panhandle (Amarillo) and when to college at Texas A&M University! Whoop! I'll have to look for some old photos when I go back to my parents at Thanksgiving ;)
 

Chamba

Not obsessed: focused.
Member
SOA Member
City
Vero Beach
State
FL
I love it. Ole Bess is what my kids call our 8.
 

Jeep Addict

Scrambler Junkie
Lifetime Member
City
Baton Rouge
State
La
Welcome and great Scrambler! If the rest of the paint looks as good as the driver’s side does I would just buff it out instead of repainting it. You‘ll be surprised how well that old paint responds with a little love.
 

bigwalton

Alaskan Postal nutjob
FORUM MANAGER
SOA Member
City
Dexter
State
MI
Thanks for the input/feedback! I'll definitely take all that into consideration!

The Jeep (Bessie) and I are originally from the Texas Panhandle (Amarillo) and when to college at Texas A&M University! Whoop! I'll have to look for some old photos when I go back to my parents at Thanksgiving ;)
Paging @TexasAg77 ;)
 

Scramblin Man

Beyond help
Lifetime Member
City
Woodway
State
Tx
An Ag living in the TU backyard..... that could get interesting. Saw'em off !!

Welcome and I'm glad you kept it all these years. Will look forward to the continuation of this thread.
 

ag4ever

Average Nut
Silver Member
Lifetime Member
City
Richmond
State
TX
Gig’em.

I don’t recall seeing that around town when I was in school. I am assuming you were there around the time I was.

’97
 

TexasAg77

S.O.A. Charter Member
BENEFACTOR
Gold Member
Lifetime Member
SOA Member
City
Cleveland
State
TN
Another long term '8 owner. And an Ag at that. Welcome and Gig'em. Am sure you are enjoying the meltdown on the 40 acres,,,
 
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