It's coming home.

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#1
Hey kidz. My name is Frank and I'm just another Scrambler junkie. I have been since I proudly drove a shiny new 1982 SR home from a dealer in Monticello 34 years ago. It was blue with a white hardtop. My new mechanical friend and I spent 14 years exploring the backcountry trails around Moab, where I've lived since early 1974. Moab was a sleepy little mining town back then and rock-crawling meant getting down on your hands and knees. We traveled just over 100,000 miles together before, like a complete fool, I sold it in 1996. It looked virtually new when I sold it except for a bit of oxidation on the hood. I keep my vehicles like I keep my camera gear...in perfect, pristine condition.

Through the years, I would gaze longingly at every Scrambler I happened to see...remembering the times we scrambled over Elephant Hill (before the Park Service smoothed it out), the trips up Poison Spider Mesa, the adventures in the remote Maze district of Canyonlands, the trips around the White Rim (long before you had to reserve campsites a lifetime in advance), and so many more.

Seven years after losing the Scrambler, I bought a new 2003 Rubicon when they first came out. As people do with the newer Jeeps, I put a ton of money into modifications...about $20K. I sold it 10 years later with 23,000 miles on it and picked up a 2013 Rubicon Unlimited. That was my second foolish mistake. The JK also cost me nearly $20,000 in personalizing and performance-enhancing modifications. When the JK design first came out, I assured the Jeep reps at the annual EJS in Moab that I would never buy one, since they had made the windshield virtually impossible to lower. I should have listened to myself.

After putting 20,000 miles on the '13 Rubicon, I finally had enough. It was just too big, too fancy, too computerized, too curvaceous, and the fun-factor was seriously compromised by a windshield that required the removal of 18 bolts to lower. I traded it for a 2016 GMC Canyon SLT Crewcab, which I absolutely love. The '13 is currently on the dealer's lot for $44,000.

I wanted to get back into a CJ so I started looking. A few weeks ago, I was in the barber shop getting what little hair I have left trimmed and ran into the ex-wife of the fellow who bought my Scrambler. She told me that he lived just 90 miles away. I contacted him and we agreed on the ransom for my CJ-8. Two days from now (Saturday), I'm driving it back home. This guy is a collector. He has several other vintage Jeeps, including one that was born the same year as I. He is getting up in years (as are many of us) and is considering letting his entire collection go. The 1947 has had a full frame-off restoration with just 900 miles put on it since.

It turns out he has put a grand total of about 10,000 miles on my Scrambler in 20 years. He assures me that it has sat outside for perhaps a week in that time and looks NO different than when he bought it. It has been garaged or in storage for most of the past 20 years, driven a few hundred miles a year to keep it healthy. It still has the SAME tires on it that were on it when it I tearfully watched it drive up and out the driveway away from my cabin (I live 26 miles outside of Moab). It is an all-original, unmolested, completely rust-free, Southwestern desert sample of the genre. He admits that there is a rust spot about the size of a quarter on the rear bumper. During my initial ownership, I added a leaf to the rear springs, a light bar to the top of the windshield (stupidest mistake I ever made with a Jeep), and a winch. That was it. He added a leaf to the fronts and 20 years of impeccable care and maintenance.

I have numerous photos of the Jeep taken when I owned it. He has sent me a few old-fashioned images on paper since he does not do digital imaging. I'll start posting photos once I figure out how that is done on this forum.

I can't wait. Is it Saturday yet?
 

CHIEFWAHO

SOA VP
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
SOA Board Member
City
Thayer
State
KS
#2
Welcome Frank! Awesome first post. Love the story.

We will be out for EJS, maybe we can hookup and check out our Scramblers.
 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#3
Thanks. I usually avoid the trails during that week but will be in town a few times that week and out at the arena for the vendor display. I will also have the Scrambler in town on Big Saturday since I'm with Search and Rescue and we help with traffic control getting all the trails out of town in the morning.
 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#4
And speaking of Big Saturday...last year I worked the 4th North and Main intersection. As soon as we finished with traffic control, I went into Sweet Cravings on that corner for breakfast. I was at a window seat. Some couple pulled up and parked a REALLY nice Scrambler right in front of me.
 

spankrjs

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Biloxi
State
MS
#5
Great story, can't wait to see some pictures, congratulations on getting your Scrambler back :thumbsup::cheers::popcorn:
 

gr8dain

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
SOA Member
City
Ashburn
State
VA
#6
Nice of the guy to store it for you all of this time. I would be ecstatic (as it appears that you are). Can't wait to see the pics!
 

MrBeep

CJ-8 Vendor Supporter
CJ-8.com Vendor
City
Dillsboro
State
IN
#8
WELCOME!


Congradulations! Always good to have more "Experienced" Jeepers with us. I still have my 1973 CJ-5 I picked up April 26, 1973. Not quite all original, but ALMOST done. :wave:
 

wm69

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
God's Country
State
AR
#11
Welcome to the forum. We're gonna need pics.....lots and lots of em.
 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#13
Welcome to the forum. We're gonna need pics.....lots and lots of em.
Thanks. I've earned my living as a photographer for the past 40 years, so you guys may get sick of the number of pix I may post. I'd post pix right now, but even though I paid for a membership, it is still not letting me do that. It took almost a week for my membership to be activated, so maybe it takes awhile for the paid membership to kick in too. I assume I can just attach photos to a post? When I click "Insert Image", it wants a URL. I'll look into the procedure more tomorrow when I have a bit of free time.
 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#14
Testing...still will not allow attachments so going through Photobucket.

This was circa 1993. Spoiler was custom-made.

 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#16
Sometime after 1992 or so...Independence Day with the parents:



So the guy who bought it from me has never taken the top off. He bagged the soft half doors and bikini top in 1996 and never removed them from the bag. I will get those Saturday along with some original brochures, the original 2-volume technical service manual, the last inspection certificate under my ownership, and ? He carefully removed the "Hayduke Lives" bumper sticker pictured in one of the above photos. It came off in one piece. He put that in a plastic bag also. He sent it to me a few days ago. Looks like it was printed yesterday.

One of finest things about the Scrambler, in my opinion, was the ability to put the half cab hardtop in the bed. It fit like a glove. And one person could do it...easily. I drove it to California for my 20-year high school reunion (don't ask when) and once I got to the beach, I just popped the top and cruised around with it in the bed.
 

Moabite

CJ-8 Member
CJ-8.com Member
City
Moab
State
UT
#19
Probably mid-'80's...headed up Poison Spider Mesa trail. For any of you familiar with that trail, it used to be possible to make it all the way to The Waterfall in 2WD. But with all the trail damage through the years from inexperienced drivers, 4WD is now required not far from the parking lot. I drove a Search and Rescue Polaris Rangers up there a few weeks ago on a rescue and could not believe how hard the first part of the trail has become from folks sitting at an obstacle and just spinning tires. There are now 3-foot ledges where there used to be slight bumps. Too bad.

 
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