1981 CJ7 Restoration - 2019.10.12

Could this be the start of putting this thing back together? I mean, the tires are the first things that contact the ground, and hopefully the only things that contact the ground!

Over the last few days I've been removing surface rust from the wheels and addressing some pits, trying to keep the rust from progressing. Then, polishing the "show side" to get it nice and shiny. It's not perfect, but hopefully it's good enough to keep this thing looking sharp for at least the next 10 years.

The final step of the wheel restoration was applying new clear coat to the show side. I used this stuff called 2K Aero-Spray Clear Coat from the Eastwood Company. It worked as advertised and produced a great finish with no "orange peel."

Since I have to use the whole can within 48 hours, I also took the advice of a trusted Jeep mechanic who strongly suggested that I clear coat the aluminum shock bodies. They are bare aluminum and will oxidize to a white haze within 6 months of environmental exposure.

Wheels and shocks coated in clear coat.

With the wheels finally done, I was ready to have tires mounted. I ordered 5 BF Goodrich All-Terrain T/A tires, also known as the KO2. They are 31" x 10.5" x 15" with the old school raised white lettering.

The UPS driver took some artistic license and setup the stack of tires like a display in an automotive store.

Pretty deep tread, looks grippy!

Had my friends at OCD Offroad Custom do the mounting and balancing of the tires to the restored wheels. They did a nice job and used adhesive weights on the inside of the rim, keeping the outer face nice and clean.

The tires come with some kind of coating to protect the white lettering, but it just washes off with water to reveal the iconic raised white letters.

Tires are on the wheels - next step, get the wheels on rebuilt axles!

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