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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-13-2003, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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differences between 74 and 76 cj5\'s

Hey all,
I was looking at buying a 74 cj5 and was having parts questions. It seems that all the parts catalogs deal with post 76 cj's. Are there really that many differences between the years? If so, has anyone been lucky in finding parts for the pre 76's?


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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-13-2003, 11:18 PM
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Re: differences between 74 and 76 cj5\'s

The 1976+ brought a "universal" change until 1986. Some of the differences include: dimensions of the body (and frame?), vent system (and dash setup), steering column, different axles, transmission, ect.

You could shop at numerous online Jeep sites to find out about the 1974 CJ-5. If you want a catalog--check out 4wd vintage.

Hope this helps.

post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-14-2003, 01:53 AM
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Re: differences between 74 and 76 cj5\'s

I'm the proud owner of a 1974 CJ5 myself. Here are the differences I have found so far:

1. Windshield Frame:
a. 1976 and later taper towards the top and lean back toward the driver more.
b. The 1974 has an obvious windsield wiper motor blister on the windshield frame.
c. This has a MAJOR effect on what tops you can use.
2. Dash:
a. 1975 and earlier dashes very a lot between years--no set standard
b. 1976 and later dashes have everything in a nice stack on the dash--easier to find stuff
c. Better standardized wiring after 1976.
3. Drivetrain:
a. 1975 and earlier use some variant of the Dana 44 for the rear axle
b. 1976 and later use a AMC 20 rearend.
c. More engine/tranny/t-case options after 1976
4. Seats:
a. 1975 and earlier there is a tool box under the passenger seat.
b. The 1976 and later use a different seat bracket.

There are other differences, some that are significant. These are the ones I've found the most problems when ordering parts though.

I like the '72-'75s. They had the flanged Dana 44 rear instead of a 2-piece 44 or 2 piece AMC 20. The '74-'75 had a reinforced frame up in the front for the 304. The '72-75 were available with the highest output engine stuck in a CJ5 stock: the 304. Later models had the 304 but it started getting real wimpy under emmisions--later models the 6cyl was a better deal in my opionion.

Downsides I've found are:

1. No factory power steering.
2. Drum brakes all around.
3. No factory power brakes.
4. ALL CJ5s have too big of a steering wheel and too small of a door for bigger guys!

There are lots of part suppliers out there for the pre '76. What exactly are you looking for?
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