CJ5 Renegade...What Would You Do?

by Jimmy

I bought a Jeep CJ-5 Renegade from the owner of an auction company.

On the first auction he did not get the reserve price he set. I saw the pictures and offered him $2,000.00. He turned down my offer.

Next week he had it listed again with the same reserve of $3,000.00 so I emailed him again and told him my offer of $2,000.00 was still good if he didn't sell the Jeep at the auction. He told me he would think about it and let me know if the Jeep didn't sell.

So when the auction was over and it had still not sold, he said he would sell it for $2,500.00 and if he couldn't get that he would keep it and drive it.

I could see rust on the left front, so I ask him if there was any more rust anywhere on the Jeep and I ask him what the overall condition was. He told me that that was the only rust on the Jeep and he drove it all last week when it snowed and it drove great.

He said it had the original 258 ci 6-cylinder with 65,000 miles on it and a 3-speed transmission. The tires were almost new and he had just had the brakes redone, and had replaced all of the heater control cables. It had one tear in the back of the soft top and one new bikini top.

This guy was 600 miles away from me so I took his word that what he told me was the truth. He
did own an auction company and I thought he would tell me the truth, which he did except for the rust.

When I got the Jeep and went over it I found rust on all four fenders and the front floor pans. So now I have $2,500.00 plus $400.00 for delivery for a total investment of $2,900.00

What would you do?...keep the Jeep and invest in the replacement parts to get rid of all the rust, or would you just sell it, walk away and find another Jeep?

If I would keep it what parts do I need to replace? Do I replace the right & left side panels, the right & left front fenders, tailgate, right & left corner panels, and the floor panels? And what about the L&R rear wheel housing?

Be honest with me. I don't need to hear that I shouldn't have trusted the guy, because I know that and I cannot change it.

I just don't want to invest more into it than I can get out. Thanks for any help you can give me on this.

Larry's Comment: Been there...done that, Jimmy!

It's a shame people can't be completely honest. The main thing is that if you decide to sell your Jeep "as is" you will be up front with prospective buyers (unlike the auction owner).

If you decide to fix it up, you may never fully get back what you have invested...and that's true with almost any vehicle restoration.

Let's see if other folks reading this have any constructive suggestions. Please use the "comment" section below.

Comments for CJ5 Renegade...What Would You Do?

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Keep it!
by: John


I am currently restoring a 1967 CJ5. I plan on putting $10,000.00 into the restoration. I am not doing it for resale but to keep it and enjoy it.

If you're looking at it as an investment, then restoring a Jeep is not the way to go. But if you want to do it for your self it's worth it.

There are many companies that sell aftermarket parts at a good price so you can get the Jeep looking pretty good. The main issue is the drive-train and frame.

As long as the engine and drive-train is sound, and the frame is not rotted or cracked then I would go for it. You'll have a cool Jeep and you'll know everything about it once you start working on it.


Do you really want it?
by: Anonymous

If you really want to have a Jeep then fix it up. Just take your time. If you are not a Jeep guy, then sell it!

Sell it!!
by: Dan Lindblad

Sell it and RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!! Unless you just enjoy restoring Jeeps and can do ALL the work yourself you will put $20k in this Jeep before you realized what happened.

I think you bought it right and can get your money back. Due to the economy it is a buyers market and you can get a NICE trail ready Jeep for $10-$15K and you don't have to lift a finger!!

If I had it to do over again that's what I would do! (check out my '79 CJ5 on this site).

What I would do is...
by: Eric

I agree with John.

I tell my boy our Jeep (CJ5) is a puzzle that we'll work on when we can. If some pieces are missing, we'll have to make our own if we can buy them.

If you don't have time for a puzzle in your life now, either store it until you have time or get rid of it so it doesn't clutter your space.

by: Jimmy

I hope the engine and transmission are as good as I was told. The steering has a lot of play in it, but it cranks right up and 4 wheel drive works good.

I have a guy that is the service manager at a Jeep dealership and he does work on Jeeps at home so I plan on taking it to him and let him go through it to see how sound it is.

I'm not looking for an investment, I want a Jeep for my wife and me to go 4-wheelin' in, nothing extreme.

Thanks for everyone's help.

Keep it and wheel it hard!
by: Andrew

This sounds like a great deal and the perfect trail rig to me. $2900!!?? A set of five premium off road tires could cost 1/2 as much or more. I say tune it up, change the fluids, new hoses, new belts and overhaul the steering, if needed. Slap a CB radio in it and hit the trails!

In a parking lot outside a Star-Bucks this old rust bucket might get a few disapproving looks. But out on the trail this Jeep will be a ROCK-STAR! You can wheel it hard and not worry about a few scratches or a dent here and there. Throw back a few bucks every month and in a few years give the old girl a face lift. By then you may have ditched the front fenders and cut out the rears anyway.

Weld in some new floor pans and Rhino line the whole thing inside and out. You, my friend, have a blank canvas to start with and years of trail fun in front of you! Good luck!

by: Jimmy

I decided since this Jeep had so much rust on it, and if I put money into a Jeep, it will be what I want and not just settle.

I want a CJ7 because the CJ5 does not have enough room. So I sold the Jeep and now I'm looking for another Jeep. I want a CJ7 with a V8, or a V6 will be okay, but it must be a CJ7. I have nothing personal against the CJ5 but I need that little extra room.

I think half the fun of looking for a Jeep is the search itself. No rush to find it and I won't just settle till I find what I want.

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