Should I sell or keep? ‘90 YJ Islander

DavidfromDallas

New Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Dallas, Texas
To start, this sounds like third world problems BUT in my household, it’s definitely developed into a problem. I started buying and selling old jeeps during the pandemic, for both fun and a little side money. I made a few successful flips and somewhere in the last year I bought this 1990 YJ, islander edition. I’ll admit I was a noob with all things Jeep prior to the TJ models, which were out when I grew up (born in ‘88 so started my love for jeeps in mid to late ‘90s). So I didn’t know much about the YJs in general, other than the fact that I thought the square fronts looked cool and different than most other jeeps I’ve seen. And I definitely didn’t know much about the Islander trim. Didn’t even know it existed. Initial thoughts: Gimmicky? Gnarly? Beach/island graphics? Why? Haha then it grew on me. I even threw about $6k into having the entire trim (fenders, inner fender wells, side steps) repainted to bring back the pop of the white paint against the graphics. I also had factory front bumper and rear bumperettes powder-coated, along with the bed rails that were part of the hardware from the original soft top, to restore new look. Other than the new Bluetooth capable radio unit and the suspension lift/tires, everything is stock. Oh and a fuel injection kit done from previous owner. It’s the 6cylinder,4.2l engine, 3-speed auto trans. 68,000 original miles. The interior looks untouched and clearly babied by previous owner. So all in all, purchased the Jeep for $15k and in it for $21k now. I bought it with the intent to SELL the damn thing now I’m having a hard time letting it go. It’s a head turner but most importantly, it’s a nostalgia even better than what I experienced in my childhood TJ. From the way the ignition buzzes and then 32 year old engine churns right up and the Jeep just crawls over everything with ease. It’s like full fledged Jeep porn driving this thing. It rides so awful compared to my ‘18 Cherokee Overland but so much better at the same time. I find myself coming up with excuses to drive it to CVS because we ran out of Clorox bleach wipes. Needless to say, my fiancé is so pissed that I’m contemplating keeping a nearly $25k toy when we don’t even own a home yet. I’ve already had verbal offers in the $30k range but I just can’t bring myself to part with it. I’ve been told by Jeep guys much more experienced than me, that I’ll likely never find another white Islander with 68k miles in show quality, and if I do, I’ll have to pay a lot more than what I’ve got in it now. I’ve stalled the fiancé for the time being by committing to sell in the future if it ever becomes a financial roadblock to us purchasing a home or needing the cash for a down-payment. Loaded question here BUT what would you do? Sell or keep? It’s just a Jeep I know…but it’s a really b.a.m.f. Jeep.
 
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DavidfromDallas

DavidfromDallas

New Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2022
Messages
2
Location
Dallas, Texas
To start, this sounds like third world problems BUT in my household, it’s definitely developed into a problem. I started buying and selling old jeeps during the pandemic, for both fun and a little side money. I made a few successful flips and somewhere in the last year I bought this 1990 YJ, islander edition. I’ll admit I was a noob with all things Jeep prior to the TJ models, which were out when I grew up (born in ‘88 so started my love for jeeps in mid to late ‘90s). So I didn’t know much about the YJs in general, other than the fact that I thought the square fronts looked cool and different than most other jeeps I’ve seen. And I definitely didn’t know much about the Islander trim. Didn’t even know it existed. Initial thoughts: Gimmicky? Gnarly? Beach/island graphics? Why? Haha then it grew on me. I even threw about $6k into having the entire trim (fenders, inner fender wells, side steps) repainted to bring back the pop of the white paint against the graphics. I also had factory front bumper and rear bumperettes powder-coated, along with the bed rails that were part of the hardware from the original soft top, to restore new look. Other than the new Bluetooth capable radio unit and the suspension lift/tires, everything is stock. Oh and a fuel injection kit done from previous owner. It’s the 6cylinder,4.2l engine, 3-speed auto trans. 68,000 original miles. The interior looks untouched and clearly babied by previous owner. So all in all, purchased the Jeep for $15k and in it for $21k now. I bought it with the intent to SELL the damn thing now I’m having a hard time letting it go. It’s a head turner but most importantly, it’s a nostalgia even better than what I experienced in my childhood TJ. From the way the ignition buzzes and then 32 year old engine churns right up and the Jeep just crawls over everything with ease. It’s like full fledged Jeep porn driving this thing. It rides so awful compared to my ‘18 Cherokee Overland but so much better at the same time. I find myself coming up with excuses to drive it to CVS because we ran out of Clorox bleach wipes. Needless to say, my fiancé is so pissed that I’m contemplating keeping a nearly $25k toy when we don’t even own a home yet. I’ve already had verbal offers in the $30k range but I just can’t bring myself to part with it. I’ve been told by Jeep guys much more experienced than me, that I’ll likely never find another white Islander with 68k miles in show quality, and if I do, I’ll have to pay a lot more than what I’ve got in it now. I’ve stalled the fiancé for the time being by committing to sell in the future if it ever becomes a financial roadblock to us purchasing a home or needing the cash for a down-payment. Loaded question here BUT what would you do? Sell or keep? It’s just a Jeep I know…but it’s a really b.a.m.f. Jeep.

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SirDoopYJ

YJ Enthusiast
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 2, 2020
Messages
745
Location
Stick Red, Louisiana
You did a hell of a job. I would definetly like to see a write up with photos with all you did to it. I can't say whether you should sell it or not.

I am still at the beginning stages with mine, but I do have a Blue Islander in mind when I eventually paint it.
 

machoheadgames

Certified YJ Researcher
Supporting Member
Joined
May 19, 2020
Messages
1,512
Location
Dallas, TX
I’d keep that for sure. From the pristine condition, to the cool islander factor, you’ve got a good one and no one is going to give you what you want for it. Definitely jeep. Especially with the awesomeness mods like fuel injection.
 

Gilaguy23

YJ Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 12, 2021
Messages
755
Location
Q town New Mexico
That's a tough question indeed. But........a home is far more important than throwing rent away and you know that. However, considering the current market, interest rates and a soon to explode housing market, Id not be in a rush to buy a home just yet. The jeep is super clean, to clean to use IMO and even if you sold it and wanted another you'd be in the same boat. You gonna really use it or is it just a trophy? I'll tell you I've been looking for a absolutely sano 7.3, F350, 4x4. Ive found a couple in the $25K range. Damn near showroom clean and unmolested. After a month or so reality set in. Am I really gonna pitch a ton of fire wood in the bed or bales of feed into the bed from the top of a squeeze, climb in covered in mud after eating chit on the atv....I cant do it, I don't need a garage queen as much as I hate to admit I want that cherry "last truck I'll ever buy". IMO, it doesn't make sense at this point in our lives to own such a vehicle, so I say let her go and move on.
 

zebraranger

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2022
Messages
41
Location
Florida
Yeah, I've never been too crazy for the Islander or the Renegade, but damn, that Islander has swayed me. Very nice job. If it were mine, it would be a keeper, and I have a nice looking & running black 93 with the 4.0.
 

ytradio

YJ Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 24, 2021
Messages
221
Location
WV
I was always the responsible one, giving up on toys, (other than boats, and the boats were always for the both of us) and never having the hot rod or off roader that I really wanted. Wait till it’s all paid for I would tell myself. That took until 59 and it was just the $1400 project Jeep that I currently have. Now I’m 61 and because of parental care the Jeep sits half disassembled. I know that I will be getting back to it soon. Keep your baby as long as it makes you happy. And in the big picture, will the money that you get from your Jeep really be needed for a home? Or will it just make it a little easier. I look back now at all the toys that I didn’t get and think. So I would have paid the house off a year later, big deal.
 
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Gary747

Member
Supporting Member
Joined
Nov 7, 2020
Messages
51
Location
Lancaster, CA
If you sell it, you will always look back with regret. You'll become one of the people that often come up to me, reminiscing about the Jeep they once owned, wishing they still had it.

So, have you considered modifying your fiancé situation?

If such modification is not possible, then let her have the Jeep. At least you could drive it on occasion.

I understand that $25K (if you can get it) is a lot of money, but... you have to drive something. Any car you own is going to cost you. My philosophy:

It is WAY cheaper to maintain the heck out of a vehicle than to buy new.

AND, you (or her) will look WAY cooler driving the YJ instead of, say, a Prius. Especially in Texas. By the way... Do you already have a Pickup Truck?

Just FYI, I also converted my 90 YJ 4.2 to fuel injection years ago. Best money ever spent.