2003 WJ Overland build

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stickel

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

Thought it was high time I started my own build thread here to track progress on my 2003 WJ Overland. This is my first: Jeep, overlanding vehicle, and vehicle I'm modifying away from stock. I bought this Jeep off Craigslist and the previous owner had already done a few modifications to it. It was pretty neat how similar our plans for it were, when we started talking about it on the test drive.

Mods done by previous owner:
  • Old Man Emu coil springs
  • 1.5" wheel spacers
  • EBC rotors and stainless steel brakelines
  • Moog steering components, including upgraded front sway bar
  • Steering damper
  • Bilstein shocks with a 3" lift (I believe)
  • Airaid intake
  • BFG 265/70R17 tires
And on to the pictures...

Hanging out in the garage 3/4 view
IMG_6174.jpg

Waiting to get smog tested side view
IMG_6203.jpg

Had to take it up a dirt road on a mountain.
IMG_6243.jpg

Future mods:
  • new headlights
  • new fog lights
  • rear bumper and tire carrier
  • full size spare
  • communications (most likely GMRS to start)
  • front bumper with winch
  • rock sliders
  • new cargo rack
  • more lights!
 

stickel

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

Spent some time (and money) getting the first round of upgrades/mods installed.

First, front and rear view dashcams
IMG_6419.jpg

Getting the front one in was easy-peasy. The rear one was a real sonofabitch though. Liftgate trim on the WJ is not an easy thing to remove the first time you're trying to get back there. Running the camera wires through the rubber tubing was a major hassle too. The protective tubing barely fits the existing wires so it took a great deal of patience worming the camera wire through that. I'm glad I had a wire coat hanger (literally only one in my entire house!) around to get the wire to a good spot.

Next up, headlights. The stock headlights were pretty oxidized and I wasn't having any of that nonsense.
IMG_6422.jpg

CCFL Spyder projector headlights installed
IMG_6426.jpg

So much better.
IMG_6427.jpg
Man I love that picture :hearteyes:
 

stickel

Rank V
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Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

I’ve been thinking about this same option but not sure if there is any advantage over the OME shocks.
Can’t say I’ve compared OME to Bilstein shocks. Knowing that I’d probably pick whichever fits my budget better if there isn’t an obvious advantage of one over the other.
 

stickel

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

This week I finally hit up a local Jeep dealer to ask about seats for my rig (broken recline on driver's and old, abused leather). This is when I started wondering if I made the right choice lol. So many discontinued parts!

Then I fell down a YouTube rabbit hole and got the idea of a parts vehicle. Now I find myself searching for just such a thing. Slim pickings out there. Did find one not too far away, but I don't really need to be spending that kind of money (and I have no place to store it!). Would be great swapping out the seats and having a bunch of spare parts though.
 

NightCrawler

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Off-Road Ranger I

3,976
Moreno Valley, Ca
First Name
Steven
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DeLong
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This week I finally hit up a local Jeep dealer to ask about seats for my rig (broken recline on driver's and old, abused leather). This is when I started wondering if I made the right choice lol. So many discontinued parts!

Then I fell down a YouTube rabbit hole and got the idea of a parts vehicle. Now I find myself searching for just such a thing. Slim pickings out there. Did find one not too far away, but I don't really need to be spending that kind of money (and I have no place to store it!). Would be great swapping out the seats and having a bunch of spare parts though.
Move down here to SoCal...I have 6-8 LQK pick-a-part yards that have plenty of your WJs. It harder for me to find XJs to pick because they entered the yard less frequently and get picked super quickly for the rare parts.
 

stickel

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

Move down here to SoCal...I have 6-8 LQK pick-a-part yards that have plenty of your WJs. It harder for me to find XJs to pick because they entered the yard less frequently and get picked super quickly for the rare parts.
Does I have to move or can I road trip and visit for a weekend? :wink: Which lots do you tend to notice the WJ Overland edition in most?
 

NightCrawler

Rank VI
Benefactor
Member

Off-Road Ranger I

3,976
Moreno Valley, Ca
First Name
Steven
Last Name
DeLong
Member #

7620

Ham Callsign
W7DTH
Does I have to move or can I road trip and visit for a weekend? :wink: Which lots do you tend to notice the WJ Overland edition in most?
Check them out here: https://www.lkqpickyourpart.com put in my zip code 92557 and see what you come up with for the years you might be interested in. Not sure about finding specific overland edition ones but I am sure they get them as well. Heck when I am in AZ I always make a point to hit up their pick-a-part lots for things I might need...learned that from BleepinJeep. We have it good here on the west coast with tons of rust free rigs to savage...our brothers back east only wish they could have such great pickings. I will say this though...the cars they get are on the lot 30-45 days before they are scraped...so if you plan to make it a trip don't count on them being there 3 months from now.
 

Keboh

Rank III
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Advocate II

628
Kansas City
Member #

9891

Make sure that you check the torque on those wheel spacers (especially hub to spacer) regularly and use locktite. I had a lifted WJ (the same exact set up, actually.. OME, bilstein) and I checked mine every few months. A couple times I found lugs FINGER loose. Scared me away from running spacers again.
 
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stickel

Rank V
Member

Member III

2,268
Las Vegas, NV
Member #

9020

Make sure that you check the torque on those wheel spacers (especially hub to spacer) regularly and use locktite. I had a lifted WJ (the same exact set up, actually.. OME, bilstein) and I checked mine every few months. A couple times I found lugs FINGER loose. Scared me away from running spacers again.
Good call. I have a major road trip in a month and will add that to the checklist. Thanks.