This is a special restoration that we did recently for a special person. I guess it’s true that good things come in pairs 🙂
Adam has always dreamed to have a 1978 Jeep CJ7. He called me a few months ago and asked me many questions about the 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration. And I must admit I was pleasantly surprised when Adam called me again the very next day to inform me that he had decided to book us for this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration and had already paid the deposit. As he said, he had a great feeling when we talked on the phone, so he had no reason to wait any longer.
And we also have no reason to wait for this restoration to start. So we found a 1978 Jeep CJ7 that belonged to a famous racer in California by the name of Sandy Con and it was in pretty good condition.
The First Step: Body Work and Paint
When we got the Jeep to our workshop, the first thing was making sure it was rust-free.
Then we stripped off everything to the bare body and the chassis. The next step was sandblasting. We peeled off everything until we got the clean metal surface. After carefully examining and repairing any metal surface inches, we applied urethane primer and sealed all the potential weak spots.
Next, we applied the spray-on Bedliner. It protects the most exposed surfaces from scratching or other damages from mechanical impacts or weather conditions. We applied a Bedliner on the complete bottom side of the body and the floor, wheel arches, and inside of the tailgate.
A paint job is always a delicate part of the restoration. As always, we used high-quality materials. But a careful and precise application was also necessary for an irresistible final look.
We painted the Jeep in Anvil Gray color, а trendy color among new Jeeps and Hellcats. We combined it with black satin and we got a powerful and impressive look.
After all that successful work on the chassis and body, it was time to assemble them. You can see how the Jeep is starting to look functional again in the next picture.
New Engine! New Parts Everywhere!
For this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration, we used a new original V8 304 engine with the force-feed lubrication system. It came with a 3 years unlimited miles warranty, which was perfect for Adam. He can now drive his dream car without worrying about all the possible engine repairs for a while.
You can see the new engine from up-close with all other parts from the engine compartment in the next picture.
We completed it with an Aluminium Edelbrock intake and 600 CFM quick fuel carburetor.
We changed many engine parts and replaced them with new ones. Here I will list just some of them:
- Four-speed C4 transmission and with a brand new flywheel and clutch kit.
- Brake shoes and the spring kit
- Front brake pads, rotors, and calipers
- Rear drums pads and wheel cylinders
We also installed a completely new air conditioning kit so Adam can enjoy driving even on the hottest days.
New Tires and 2,5 inches Lift for an Awesome Look!
Successful restoration is inevitable without mounting new quality tires. That’s why in this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration we put new 33′ 12.50 BF Goodrich K2O tires. We mounted them on 15 inches black satin chrome rims, a quality product from US Wheels. Their look was rough, strong, and stylish, just the way we wanted them to be.
It’s important to notice that in this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration we also did a 2.5 inches lift. You can see in the next picture how the new tires and lift-up make things look much better.
We put a Rugged Ridge zero shackles on because there was no lift on them. So we used heavy-duty greaseable shackles, and we were sure they could withstand a lot heavier duty than the original ones. You can see them mounted on the front part of the suspension in the next picture.
As you can see, everything was so sanitary clean, and shiny. All the hardware was new. Also, in this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration, we completely rebuild the suspension and the differentials.
Step by step, we were seeing a new Jeep in front of us.
Major Exterior Improvements
Following the Anvil Gray with the black satin color combination, we put a brand new black satin Bestop soft top and front soft doors.
You can see how they look so stylish in our next picture.
This photo also gives a nice view of some other parts of the Јeep’s back, on which I will write in the following lines, one by one.
I can start from the rear bumper that we changed and put a new one from Rock Hard. It came along with a skyjacker and a spare tire holder. The holder was a great option for heavy-duty conditions and way better than a factory Jeep’s spare tire mounting kit. It can avoid the stretch-out of the Jeep’s metal sheets and possible fatigue craft. In the next photo, you can have a closer look at all of them.
The next step of this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration was adding the new dual and full-stainless exhaust pipe on the underneath side. You can see it in the following close-up photo:
At the front side, we went with the brand new Rugged Ridge front bumpers and the Smittybilt Gen3 winch with remote control and the core cable.
You can see them nicely in the next picture:
The picture shows how striking and remarkable the front end was after the 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration was finished.
We continued with the same style and look on both sides, and we mounted the Smittybilt side steps. Also, we painted in black satin the original Jeep rocker panel molding from the factory stock so they could follow the Jeep’s style and color tone.
We put a lot of time and effort into the interior’s restoration.
We went with new 2 tones Bestop Trailmax seats that completely refresh the interior. Look at how the back seats look so awesome in the next picture:
They were not only good-looking but also comfortable and made of high-quality materials.
In the same picture, you can also see the waist belts that we put on the backseat. For the front seats, in this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration we installed 3-point seatbelts which you can see in the following photo:
We carefully bolted them into the Jeep’s frame to ensure passengers’ safety and regulatory compliance.
We installed a new Tuffy lockbox in the free space between the front two seats with a brand new Alpine stereo inside. The rest of the space was suitable for keeping some personal stuff. Functionality and security are why we love Tuffy lockboxes and install them on all of our CJ7 restorations.
Also, we put a new four-speed gear-shift. Look how timeless it looks:
Some details can really make a difference, can’t they?
In this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration, we also changed the dash pad, all the gauges, bezels, and indicator lights with new ones. You can see how everything shines as if it just came out of the factory line:
Next, we set a new windshield with all new goodies around it, like:
- wiper blades
- rubber seals
- side view mirrors
- rearview mirror
The roll bar position in CJ7 is very attractive. So we painted it in black satin color and finish. With that, we created a wonderful visual effect. Look how everything looks awesome in the next picture.
Finally, A Dream Come True
One of the reasons people love CJ7 is enjoyment while driving with an open roof. When there is no top above the head, there are no limits and borders, only the blue sky and the neverending desire just to drive somewhere, anywhere…
I assume that was a part of Adam’s dream when he called us about this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration. And we’re more than happy to be the ones that helped Adam make his dream come true.
If you have any questions or need any additional info, feel free to contact us.
And don’t forget to see the video that we filmed just about this 1978 Jeep CJ7 restoration.