Join Date: May 2001
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Re: Ground up build
Speaking from personal experience, the Matkins Extreme crossmember is a belly-dragging PIG. It's nice and beefy, but with 4" of lift on 33's it hits EVERYthing. I would look for something flat.
The prices are also VERY high. If I were looking to do what you are talking about, I would get a YJ tub and frame (they are galvanized, stock) then graft on fenders, dash, hood, and clip. It's a common practice and a lot of folks have done it. I would expect to pay $500-800 for a decent rolling chassis.
I'm also not really sold on the coil-over on CJ's. Yes a LOT of competition rigs are running it these days, but I think there is still a lot to be said for leaf-springs.
'83 CJ-7 nothing original but the tub and axle tubes