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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey folks and sorry this may get long, but I figured I'd give a little background about myself first. I'm known as eaglefreek on most of the way too many other forums I belong to, due to owning some AMC Eagles. It started in '06 when I purchased my first Eagle wagon when I moved to CO and was looking for a cheap winter beater.


However, it was a manual car with no A/C and one day sitting in I-25 traffic on a hot day, I decided I needed an auto and A/C. I bought an 86 Eagle and it became my daily driver.


I somehow fell in love with the goofy cars and wound up selling my Mustang SVO that I owned for 22.5 years and drove my Eagle full time. The plan was to turn the first Eagle into a lifted off road vehicle with an SAS and a Ford 5.0L, but a divorce intervened and I gave the car to a friend and moved to TN.

My 86 went through some changes over the years. I installed a Jeep 4.0L head on the 258 along with a Comp Cams camshaft. A Jeep AW4, NP242 transfer case and 8.25 rear was installed and I built front and rear bumpers for it.



On a trip for work, I was driving through Utah on my way to Nevada and went and looked at another Eagle that was for sale. It had a 5.3L Chevy engine with a Dana 44 front and Explorer 8.8 rear. I had to have it and bought it. I fixed some of the issues it had and put about 20k miles on it in a year and I half.



I had my fun with it and sold it. On a station wagon forum I'm on, a guy came on saying they were looking for unfinished project cars for a show and right at the same time I was in talks with my buddy that I gave my first Eagle to about getting it back since he hadn't touched it in 5 years. Well, you might have seen the transformation on Lost in Transmission on History Channel. It's no longer 4wd and has a Mustang 5.0L engine, T5 trans and 8.8 rear and is currently for sale.


I wanted to let my contact at the show know that I was selling it and they were in the middle of shooting a Top Gear episode and Rutledge was next to him and asked if I was selling my white one, also. Well Rutledge Wood now owns my 86 Eagle, so I'm out of the Eagle game and wanted to try something different. I pass an auto repair shop on my way to the office and there has been a Trooper parked there for 2 years, I stopped by yesterday and talked to the shop owner and he said it needed engine work and the owner didn't want to have it done. It turns out the owner is a good friend of my dad and I made a deal with him today and now own an 88 Trooper with a 2.6L and auto. It's actually in great shape and I'll have pics of it in a couple days when I go to pick it up. Now I have to figure out if I want to fix the engine that is in it or buy a wrecked truck that is in the classifieds in Chattanooga for the engine or do some type of engine swap. I've got a lot of research to do since I don't know a darn thing about Troopers.
 

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1989 Trooper R/S
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Welcome, here you'll find all you should ever need to know about Isuzu's. The eagle story and pics are great. The 2.6 has a real sturdy lower end and these usually go for a long way before they give problems. On the other hand the upper ends are prone to head gasket problems and burnt exhaust valves also if the previous owner didn't keep the valves adjusted properly. The engine choices are limited with the 2.6. The 2.8 lends itself to better choices with the 3.4 being the most popular. The 2.6 transmission won't mate up to the v6. Post up your progress. I'll recommend a compression check as the first step. Also should have mentioned the in tank fuel pump as a potential problem. A couple of hard knocks on the bottom of the fuel tank will sometimes free up a pump long enough for the car to start.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. I did do some research for the last couple of weeks. I was leaning towards a Montero, but couldn't pass this Trooper up. I knew if I was going to buy a Trooper, it would not have the 4L30E. I stopped by on my way to work and snapped a couple pics. It's covered in mold and mildew, but should clean up nice. I popped the hood and the shortblock has been exposed to the elements for a couple years, so it's rusty and not a candidate for just installing a head on it. I was surprised to see locking hubs.

 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I picked the Trooper up today. It was fun loading it up by myself. I couldn't find my darn come along, so I used a chain hoist to get it on the dolly.
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I gave it a much needed bath.



I'll be installing the new engine at the shop at my work and getting in the shop was fun by myself, also. I used a winch we have on a cradle.


I'm picking up a wrecked one in the morning that the engine was just rebuilt a few thousand miles ago.

I'll start a need thread in the appropriate section.
 

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That really cleaned up nice, and with a new engine you'll have a very capable rig.
 
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