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Author Topic: Off Topic Jeep  (Read 3078 times)

Posts: 532

« on: November 22, 2010, 06:33:37 AM »

OK, I picked up a 1999 Jeep Cherokee that's cherry.  So there's two things I want to do to it. 

First is expand the options...

The other is get a radio in it.

For the second, I've already bought a Diamond dual-band antenna, and I dug out my old Alinco DR-590.  Unfortunately, it had a dead internal battery, so I had to open it up and change it, but that's now taken care of.  I plan on putting it under the rear seat so it will be hidden, and bringing out a single speaker lead.

As to the first, I've already gone to the junk, er, SALVAGE recycle yard, and picked up the fog light switch panel and relays.  (One relay is powered by the parking lights, which then provides power to the second relay which actually powers the fogs.  Unfortunately, when I went to drop in the relays into the power distribution box, there was no socket connectors for them!  ARGH...

Now here's my question...

I was hoping to do all my mods before Thansgiving, and to make all my install look as factory as possible.  SO...  I went to Jeep.  Turns out there's a Fog Lamp installs kit, and a Fog Lamp kit for the 1999 Cherokee STILL AVAILABLE.  (Both are required, but I THINK the one is a new air dam kit with the lamps).  My problem is I can't find out what's in the kits and they are special order, which means pay up front, no refunds.  IF the kit includes the 'back panel' parts for the power distribution block, I'd spend the bucks for it.

I figure hams are hackers and if anyone would know, someone here might.   Anyone on here upgrade a Cherokee to fogs and know what's in the kits?


I want to put cruise in my Jeep.  Before I invest in an aftermarket (I've been told there's at least one aftermarket kit that plugs into the vehicle network and uses it, and I'll pay for it if I have to) I checked Jeep again.  And, there was actually a Factory Option Dealer Install Kit for cruise control.  While that kit is out of production, and I can't even find a manual for it anywhere, does anyone know what was in the kit?  If it's the steering wheel switches and the vacuum unit, it might mean I can just find those parts in a junkyard and the conversion might be easy.  The factory built option only used one wire the the steering wheel.  The 5 switches each had a different resistor on them, and the body computer read the voltage (through another resistor, of course) to figure out what button was pushed.  I took apart  a steering wheel at the salvage yard and it doesn't appear too hard to get at the area under the airbag to do the conversion.  The existing panels come out easily. 


Posts: 83

« Reply #1 on: November 23, 2010, 11:39:34 AM »

Better yet.

Research and/or ask here: or



Posts: 500

« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2010, 01:21:06 PM »

Fog light kit just for the factory looking switch?  The folks at any NAPA Auto Parts store can order switches, relays and such.  Couldn't pay me to install fog lights, driving lights (Philips #4537 100 watt, aircraft, spot, $10-15) (Grote - BRACKET, PAR 46 RUBBER TRACTOR & UTILITY LAMP HOUSING #64940, $30-40) are what you want, and at least four of them.

Really should have purchased a Jeep w/ cruise already installed.  I put an aftermarket c/c in my 78 Blazer, nearly more trouble than it was worth.  But nowadays, w/ the computers, airbags, etc, I won't even attempt it.


Posts: 10248


« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2010, 04:09:21 PM »

I can't answer all of the wiring mod questions, but I can answer some of the questions with respect to you amateur radio installation.

My e-mail address is on the front page of my wen site.


Posts: 532

« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2010, 05:20:29 PM »

Thanks Alan!

I bought a Diamond MR77 mag mount 2M / 440 antenna.  It's a quarter wave on 2M, and I'm bringing it down between the front and read doors.  The post has a 'knockout' to get into the vehicle, so I can get down to the floor and then to the back seat.  I suspect it's for a light bar cable entry.  It's also behind the 'strip' behind the front door.  I'm going to put an Alinco DR-590 under the rear seat on the right side, and put the head on the console in the front.  I plan on a power feed into the dash area with a relay that triggers from the cigar lighter for Ignition on.  I'm not sure what I'm going to do about a speaker yet.  I may take the air duct out and put a 2-1/2" high output speaker in the duct.  I'm not sure yet if I'm going to take the speaker/power/interface cables up the center console or up the door frame yet to get from the back seat to the front.  If I go up the door, I have to come around on the dash to the center.  If I come up the center, I only need to be under the carpet for about 12" and then I'm in the free-space on the side of the console.  The Alinco gives me the option of running single (mixed VHF/UHF) or separate speakers, so I only have one I need to run.

I'm a little concerned about the heat if I put the radio under the rear seat.  As an alternative, I may put it under the passenger seat.  I was hoping it would be protected under the rear seat, but it may be better to put it under the passenger seat for ventilation and put a cage around it for protection.

Posts: 532

« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2010, 05:24:59 PM »

For the fog lights, I already got a factory switch panel, and I know how the fogs wire into the system from factory.  One relay turns them on with a feed from the parking lights, a second relay uses a feed from the high beams to BREAK the fog power feed for federal DOT rules.  But I may just have them turn on with parking lights and blow off the high beam disconnect.  There's some pretty slim fog lights that look like they would be a perfect compliment to the cutouts in my front air dam.

For the cruise, I found an aftermarket that's pretty seamless and easy.  $200 for the unit WITHOUT the control.  You have to by the control separate, but you buy the control based on the vehicle to match.  They also have a a 'generic' rectangle switch plate you can get, or a wireless RF remote that tucks into the spoke of the steering wheel (the most expensive).

Posts: 6252

« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2010, 03:59:59 AM »

I'm not saying that everything you need isn't there, but on some of the vehicles, if it was a 'stripped' vehicle--meaning no additional accessories, the computer system may have the wiring and connectors already there but the computer will have to be upgraded too.  I don't know about Jeeps, but GM products are like that.

Posts: 532

« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2010, 04:55:38 AM »

Chryslers are a 'mix' when it comes to stripped vehicles.  When a vehicle is new, they generally are stripped.  That is, the harness only supports what is built.  But as a model matures, they decide what's the cheapest way to go.  In the case of my Jeep, the wiring harness is in the dash for the fog lights.  Just plug in the new panel.  But the harness only goes as far as the 'connector block' that goes to the firewall.  I suspect.  Well, what I KNOW is that the switch connector has all the wires, and they go up into the harness under the dash.  And the switch works, in that it lights with the panel lights.  But inside the power distribution block in the engine compartment, there are no 'connectors' for the relays.  If you try to plug them in, they have no contacts.  Makes me wonder if there was a small harness that could be 'added' easily.  That's also why I was looking at the 'factory' cruise kit.  But I suspect I need to change the clock spring in the steering wheel to add an aditional wire, and that's under the airbag.  The rest of the kit is just a few connections, and then the mechanical servo.  I would like the factory buttons on the wheel, but that may not come to pass.

My previous Jeep, for example, I could change the dash to a tach.  Just plug it in, the wiring and circuitry was all there.

My Intrepid, to add fog lights, I just had to plug in under the fender and change the light switch, the harness was all there to support it.  But the remote keyless entry was another story.  I was told the 94 Intrepid had the full harness where you could just plug in the receiver.  But the 93, nope...

« Last Edit: December 07, 2010, 04:57:56 AM by Mike Yetsko » Logged
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