• Welcome to the new NAXJA Forum! If your password does not work, please use "Forgot your password?" link on the log-in page. Please feel free to reach out to [email protected] if we can provide any assistance.

How to junk your XJ in 48 hours.....


NAXJA Forum User
NAXJA Member
Foresthill, CA
Well, I officially finished off my rig on Fordyce this weekend. Wifey and I made it all the way to mile 10 or so, and it was no picnic getting there. I think we went farther than anyone has gone thus far. The winch hills, which are usually paved over, were truly winch hills. On winch hill two, I landed sort of funny while trying to throttle up an undercut face, and on impact, the motor mount(s) broke and pushed the alterantor into the frame, cracking it's case. It was making horrendous noises, and the voltage was showing low. I was afraid I was on battery only, so I played Ivan Stewart, and tried to make it out the top side before I ran out of juice. This was at mile 8.0 or so.

The snow got deep around mile 9.0, and I soft rolled my junk into a tree trying to get past a snow drift at mile 9.5. We turned around, because there was no getting through that way, and headed for the bypass to Fordyce Lake. Got stopped by snow that way as well. Headed back for the entrance.

Made good time all the way back to winch hill #1, where I took a nice solid hit on the rear bumper that finally cracked my rear hatch in two, ejecting the glass, but not shattering it. After strapping it together so it would hold, we continued on.

Made it back to the first water crossing yesterday at about 6:00 pm, and the water was AWN. Gulped a tiny bit of water, but kept it running until we crossed. The motor started running like crap, and there was a bit of water in the oil, but I just wanted to get it to the highway at this point. Well, coming down driveline hill, I broke the steering gear in two, and pulled what was left of it off of the frame. It still had pressure, and wasn't leaking badly, so I used the winch cable to hold it to the frame. Limped it back to the highway and called AAA (thank God for 100 mile tow service).

Anyway, my junk is truly junk, and there is no good way that I can see to repair the frame, it is oficially done. Not sure about the motor yet, but I have a feeling that the main bearings are junkified, and need changing.

I'll be starting to switch all the good stuff (whats left of it) over to the new rig in a couple of weeks. We did have a fine time, though, and the trail was the toughest I've ever seen it, with creeks running down the winch hills, and soupy mud everywhere else.

Pics shortly, but it's nothing pretty!

Ouch! Sorry it went down like that, poor old Red, at least she let go doing what she loves :D Can't wait for the pics. So if you start doing the switcharoo in 2 weeks whens it gonna be ready to wheel? Let me know when you get started on it I will donate some hours to the phoenix project :D
Wow. Were you with anybody else? How did Mrs. Crash tolerate all this carnage? Time for a J20 steering box and a whole lot of frame reinforcement. Let me know when the work weekend is, Marni and I will be glad to come up.

Mrs. Crash was laughing her ass off most of the time, and she was only truly worried when we were debating driving it home on the highway.

How's the little grunion?

Time for whole lot of frame reinforcement.


You'll beable to check out what Jes is getting from UPS on tuesday or Wednesday. I'm sure he'll ask you to install it.

orgs mfg
I met up with a couple of Toyota's from a local club on the way out. It was just wifey and I for the majority of the weekend.

Mark, I'll have to check out Jes's new part in a couple of weeks.....

The funny part is, my frame WAS reinforced. It looks like the rearmost mounting tab on the steering gear broke first, and it was all downhill from there. One of the bolts actually pulled through the frame, leaving a ragged hole.


I won't be ready for the 'Con, but I'll make Swamp later in the summer. I'm sending my motor down for machine work next week, that will be my limiting factor, everything else is fairly easy to switch over.

CRASH..... Registered Cherokee Abuser
CRASH shoulds brought me along my rig could pulled u all the way through! MY RIG IS HARDCORE!!!!!!!:D

Beez, it was fully Ivan Stewart. We were throttling up stuff in 4th gear low range that I would normally have run in first or second. I figured I had limited life on the battery, so I tried to minimize my hiking distance. As it turned out, the alternator, even in it's semi-destroyed shape, was charging every once in a while. The funny thing was, the only time it was charging was when I cooled it off in water crossings, the longer it was dry the hotter it ran, and the voltage would drop off.

The throttle action may have played a part in the steering gear issues.

I still can't believe I didn't break a wheel or cut multiple tires. It was insanity.


Finally, some pics.

Up winch hill #1 (the only one that was dry.)


Uhhhhh......right.......that's like, bad, um-kay....


And the end result, after I popped the button on the hatch when I got home.....


I'll get some steering pics tomorrow, after i figure out how to move the pitman arm a bit out of the way.

WOW, great carnage pics. Glad I wasn't counting on you for the Rubicon this next week ;)

I've GOT TO do that trail when I'm out there. I've pulled some information, but I need to review it, and see if it gives directions to the trail head.
Man, while I was sure missing you at BOTW, now I'm glad you weren't ready to go. You would definitely have killed the poor thing for good on those trails. :D

Now, are you going to give the thing a proper burial, or just unceremoniously have it hauled off to the scrap yard? ;)

Sounds like you had a good time........a real wheeling adventure. Now, get your butt in gear so you don't miss Swamp. :)
I'll be cutting it up with the torch and doing failure analysis of various problem areas. I'm hoping to add to the knowledge pool, and prevent future failures.