View Full Version : The Frankenjeep

51 CJ3
01-26-2018, 12:41 PM
I bought this thing a few years back thinking I would restore it but I don't think it is worth the trouble anymore. I didn't know anything about the flat fender Jeeps other than I wanted one. This will be my toy/hunting vehicle. Not sure what it's future holds but a diesel engine and a full body replacement are possibilities. Someone opted to overlay the rusted out floor instead of replacing it and the rear fenders are in pretty bad shape. The jury is still out on the engine and drive train. It runs decent now but it blows blue smoke. The transfer case leaks at both output shafts and has seen quite a bit of river fun. So far all I have done to it is rebuild the carb, install an electronic ignition distributor (with a basic tune up), replaced the brake master cylinder and the brake light pressure switch. I also installed a boat seat so a person could slide in and out of the jeep and borrowed the windshield from my CJ2A because the glass in the CJ3A frame was badly cracked from contact with the bumpers on the hood. It is titled as a CJ3A.

01-26-2018, 01:43 PM
Almost nothing is too far gone, it just depends on how much time one is willing to give to rebuilding it. On a M38A1 build a few years back, the only thing keeping the cowl attached to the rest of the body was the door sill. It took a lot of man hours to square everything up, and replace the sheet metal. I was supplied with three donor A1s, so I had a descent amount of original sheet metal, plus one to take measurements from. Still, there was a lot of time invested into the project.

A diesel would be a good fit. I've read about an outfit that has done some Kubota tractor engine swaps, with much success. I would possibly look toward a 4-71 Detroit 2 stroke....Why, that I can't answer. I like noise and leaks.

51 CJ3
01-26-2018, 02:17 PM
Initially I was thinking Yanmar myself but Kubota is good and there is kit available. I had a friend who installed a Cat engine in a CJ5. He was pretty happy with it.

With regard to a restoration. I agree just about anything can be restored but what would a person restore it to? I see CJ2A (body), CJ3A (frame and windshield) and M38 (hood) plus some custom "one off" items and I am not sure I have everything identified correctly. I would have to pick one major component and pretty much discard the rest to do a restoration. I am thinking keep the frame and dump the body since it is titled as a CJ3A if I went that route. The firewall has data tags for both the CJ3A and CJ2A.

51 CJ3
01-29-2018, 09:41 PM
I took a couple of pictures while I was under the jeep today. I added them to the gallery.

01-30-2018, 05:57 AM
The good thing about Willys, you can take the best parts, and combine them together. One never knows exactly what you have until you tear it apart and examine all the parts. A CJ3A tub has slightly more room for the driver and passenger, with the wheel wells set back further. The windshield is taller, and one piece. Some of the early foreign made bodies were a hodge podge of parts. The pictures below are of a early MD Juan M38 body and frame, compared to an original M38. The only real difference is that there is no provision for an in cowl mounted battery box. The quality of the steel used for the tub was crap too. The replica Jeep did spend it's life in the rust belt, but it was only driven during fair weather. It shouldn't be that rusty.

What size Cat is in his CJ5? The only small engines that are branded Cat are actually Perkins.... Perkipillar if you will. Good little engines. I keep thinking that for what ever reason, I would be up to putting in a Detroit 4-71 two stroke screamer.

51 CJ3
01-30-2018, 07:32 AM
I wish I had more info on his CJ5. He died in a plane crash a couple of years ago.

Thanks for the tip on the replacement tubs. I saw an aluminum tub for sale somewhere. It would be better but it doesn’t remove the possibility of corrosion and this long time Ford fan is considering a change just because the F-150 is aluminum now. I would like to have a tub that fit the frame but all I really want out of this Jeep is a reliable hunting vehicle. It may even see some fire fighting action. Having it pretty will only make me sad when I abuse it.

51 CJ3
01-30-2018, 07:46 AM
Your jeep looks like it turned out pretty well. I don’t think I could tell the difference between a replica and an original. I bought this CJ3A thinking it was an original CJ3. I am a little better educated these days but I have a long way to go.

51 CJ3
01-31-2018, 08:39 PM
Treated my girl to some new shoes today. It drives a lot better now that all the tires are the same size ;)

02-01-2018, 05:59 AM
The fitment of the fenders, grill, hood, clutch and brake pedals were off on the replacement tub. The red Jeep was purchased as a kit in the early eighties, so it probably wasn't licensed per AMC's specks. A knock off if you will. I have read where Willys Overland out of Toledo Ohio makes what's called a Repli-tub. https://willysoverland.com/ They take a MD Juan replacement tub, and place it on a jig. They correct the issues of fitment, and make it into a direct bolt on replacement. The prices were fairly reasonable. They used to handle parts much like Kaiser Willys, but according to their web site, they have shifted their focus on nothing but the replacement tubs. On ewillys site, every once in a while there will be a stainless steel body come up for sale. They look good, but it puts you in mind of either looking at the kitchen sink, or a DMC 12 Delorean.

In my opinion, you have a good starting point. The floor reinforcement hat channels are available, and fit well. The areas where the wheel wells are torn out can be welded up fairly easily. If you took out the heavy roll bar, and switched to a lighter tube type, (I might know where there is one that would part with cheap). You would have something that would be nice, but not afraid to use. Speaking of fire fighting, the following are a couple of retired fire fighter rigs. The M37 was purchased by my father. The CJ belonged to a local VFD, that put it up for a sealed bid auction. We didn't win the bid, but it went to one of the firefighters who had been with the department all of his life. He grew up with the Jeep, so it was a fitting home.

02-01-2018, 08:06 AM
Let me try this again. I hate being censored on here. The red jeep was purchased as is, and was a kit car more or less. I believe the body and frame was an MD Juan, fabricated in the very early eighties. The tub was alright except for where the pedals go through the floor board. The holes did not line up at all. The fenders and hood did not line up at all. The fenders didn't sit flat, and the hood was a couple of inches too long. The quality of the metal was Chinese garbage. The Jeep was a seasonal runner, so it was parked during the winter. The floor had rust holes around the hat channel supports, and the fender "steps" on the tub. The fenders were rotten at the rear of the flat, into the downturn. There is an outfit, (Willys Overland Toledo, Ohio) that takes an MD Juan body and repairs the flaws to be guaranteed to fit on your frame. They call their version the Repli-tub. To look at their web site, type in Willys Overland, since I can not share the link with out being put off until the moderator can check it out....
There are some stainless steel bodies out there, that don't fit too bad. The stainless bodies put you in mind of a kitchen sink, or a DMC 12 Delorean. They can be painted, but it would be a lot of prep to get the paint to stick well.

It is nice to have a full set of matching tires. It makes a world of difference in the handling of these old heeps. Switching to a radial from a bias ply makes the most difference. The only set that I have where all four match are a set of seventy year old 16" snow tires. They are hard as can be, and the side walls are just about non existent. They all hold air, and I have driven to town on them. They follow every divot and crack in the roadway, so you are constantly sawing back and forth on the steering wheel. Now I have two matching bias plies on the front, and two radials on the back. Somewhat better road manners. Just need to break down and spend the money on new shoes.

51 CJ3
02-01-2018, 11:47 AM
I couldn’t find used tires to fit the 15 inch rims anymore. The old rims were corroded and leaking at the bead so I finally got frustrated enough that I bought all new. After hitting wall after wall looking for affordable 16 inch steel rims I ended up going back to a 15 inch. Once I made the decision to use 15 inch rims, they were on the jeep the next day.

I have been looking at what can be salvaged and pricing replacement parts for the body. The floor needs replaced from the firewall to the tailgate. The rear wheel wells are broken out and I don’t think there is any good hat channel left anywhere (there is more oak than hat channel). There isn’t a big price difference between buying all the parts separately or buying a tub from Kaiser Willys. To save money, the rear wheel wells could be salvaged and the floor could be replaced with generic sheet metal or diamond plate but it wouldn’t look right (especially with me doing the work). I don’t have a clue where the current steel replacement tubs and panels come from. I believe the stainless came from the P.I. but I didn’t see anywhere to buy now. It will come down to how much I want it to keep it looking like a jeep or maybe how bad I want to avoid it looking like it was cobbled together in someone’s backyard (like it does now).

02-01-2018, 02:22 PM
It all boils down to money and time. I agree with you about the generic sheet metal or diamond plate. Most all of the individual body parts that Kaiser Willys sells is made in the U.S. The tubs and assemblies bearing the Willys name, are under license and trade mark from Chrysler, and MD Juan holds that license. I do not know of any other outfits that make complete bodies. I did an M38A1 a while back, and all of the floor was hashed or missing. I did have three donor heeps at my disposal, so I was able to piece together some original steel to make one. The only replacement parts used was the fuel tank well, passenger floor, tool box riser, and right side lower rocker. We had found some hat channel that matched the dimensions, but were straight. The cost on the channel was a fraction of the cost of the kit, but I had a lot of time in constructing the bends. I also had to make spacers to eliminate the white oak stiffeners, to reduce the chance for rust in the future. On my current project, I purchased a 4' X 10' sheet of 18 gauge, and will be making my own floor boards. The wagon floors are flat, so the only fabrication that I will need to do to match the originals, is to bend in the stiffener reliefs in the center. The only tough part about the build will be at the rear hatch. It will be tedious to match the ridges of the floor, because that is the one piece of sheet metal that isn't reproduced. So it will be cutting metal to make the top section, then cutting pieces to form the sides. It will be fun to metal finish, because you will be constantly using the tip of the grinder to blend everything in. A die grinder would work better, but then it slows down progress. Odds are I'll use the die grinder. If you want to see a true metal craftsman, you should Google Grand Willys Project. That guy is a true craftsman.

As far as tires go, I like the turning radius given by using the 15" tires and wheels. The 16" required the stops to be turned out considerably, or the tire would rub both for and aft of the frame.

51 CJ3
02-01-2018, 04:28 PM
Thanks for the input and insight. I had noticed some of the parts on the Kaiser website are advertised as being made in the USA. I buy domestic when possible. I called Willys-Overland for info and pricing. Whatever I do it won’t happen fast. Now that I can actually take it down the road other issues are coming to light. It sounds like a throwout bearing change is in my near future. I also need to pull one wheel and tack weld two studs into the drum. The holes are worn out and it turns out the studs I have are oversized. I would replace the drum but am mulling over a swapping the rear to disc brakes, I am just not in a hurry to part with that $1100.

I am surprised the 16 inch rims caused interference problems. Was the tire size different as well? The tires I ended up installing were the same overall height and width (~30.5x 9) as the tires I had planned on buying for the 16 inch rims.

02-04-2018, 05:25 PM
Just a test here to see if we have a problem with links.

I copied this one directly from the url header and pasted it in.


It looks like it's there - now let me post this and see if it stays.

Yep it stayed.

Just testing - thanks for letting me use your space...

51 CJ3
02-04-2018, 08:28 PM
I missed the fire truck picture somehow the first time through. I had considered setting mine up as one but then pretty much decided against it because I want to use it. It might have been handy today though. We had 3 brush trucks stuck but a jeep might have been light enough to get through okay. Side by side atv’s are getting popular. Our department has one but it never seems to run.

Being able to post links seems kind of random. Sometimes they post and sometimes they get sent through a moderator.

02-05-2018, 05:49 AM
Yep, the fire truck photos were in forum jail until they were looked at by the moderator. It seems almost every time I try to add a link to ewillys, or other useful links, it gets flagged.

The fire department that had the Dodge, used it some for grass fires. It was originally set up with a 500 gal water tank, but proved to be way too squirrely on the road. The tank was nearly as tall as the cab. They trimmed it down to a 200 gal tank for stability. When the Dodge was retired, it had 10,000 original miles on the clock. The only problems that the department had with the M37, was that the younger fire fighters would dump the clutch, and break an axle under load. The 48 CJ2A was a factory built fire apparatus. It was with the same department from new. It was clean as a pin when auctioned off. The photo was lifted off of the Midwest Willys Reunion, a couple of years back. Before that, I hadn't seen the Jeep in almost thirty years. Glad to see her being well taken care of! As far as the side by sides. In my mind they are a huge waste of money. A department can set up a Jeep to do the same job. You don't need a tow rig and trailer to deliver the go kart on scene, so that saves money right there.

The tires are 700X16". They were the tires that were on my 47 when I purchased it, and would fair to say they may have been the originals to the Jeep. When the 16''s are put on the Jeep, the steering stops need to be adjusted out to keep the tires from rubbing the frame. With the 15"s on there, the stops were adjusted all the way in. There is plenty of room now. The profile looks nicer with the 16"s, and the price of tires isn't that much different between the two.

Your wheel stud issue,( more than likely) was caused by someone along the line pressing out the wheel studs without cutting the peened section above the stud. When the studs were installed new, the stud was pressed in, then the section of the spline just bellow the threads is pressed into the hub. There is a cutter available that cuts the pressed section out, so then you can finish pressing out the old stud. Many times than not, the stud is pressed out through the hub, pulling excess material of the hub with it. Sounds like your hubs are hogged out enough for the original studs to be loose in, but not worn enough for the oversized.

51 CJ3
02-05-2018, 10:01 AM
My first thought was to just get oversized studs but the splines measured at the max oversize available (through NAPA anyway). A couple of quick bumps with the mig welder took care of it. The lug nuts didn’t even get hot. There is nothing but an axle insde the drum. The only brakes I have are the discs on the front powered by a stock master cylinder. Probably not legal but I have have plenty of stopping power on the road.

I went to install the new locking hubs (Warn) yesterday but that got put on hold while I wait for new bearings/races to come in. I installed a new seal on the rear output shaft on the transfer case a while back but now it looks like the shims under the bearing cap are leaking. I am not sure what I am going to do about that. Can’t put sealant on shim stock and expect the desired dimension to stay the same. One of the pinion seals and the rear seal on the engine has started leaking too. I should just drop the transmission and transfer case since it needs a throwout bearing anyway. Thirty years ago I was doing that kind of work unassisted but I suppose I better go buy a jack if I am going to do it now.

Am I the only one who must login a second time to make a post?

02-05-2018, 12:13 PM
Logging in twice happens from time to time.

Years ago, I put a turbo 400 in a Chevy 3/4 2X4 truck with no jack, nor any one else around. There was just enough room to slide the transmission under the truck, then position myself under the engine. I pulled the trans forward, on top of my legs, until my feet were behind the trans pan. Holding on to the bell housing, I brought my knees to my chest. The transmission ended up being pretty darn close to being lined up. I was able to start a couple of bolts toward the bottom. The fun part was picking up on the tail shaft enough to slide it all the way on the dowel pins, and starting the remaining bolts. It only took about an hour to do, but I tend to think I can feel it to this day. I have since invested in a transmission jack, and a house with a concrete driveway. It's a cheapy from Northern Hydraulics, but I've had it for about 15 years with no troubles. Most shim packs I've run across have been shellacked. A real fine layer of the gunk will seal just about anything, and won't throw off your clearances by much. There is probably a better way, but I can't think of any at this moment. I'll look into it.

The hub is pressed onto the brake drum. The tach should hold up just fine. As long as the lug nut stays torqued, you shouldn't have any issues.

51 CJ3
02-10-2018, 05:16 PM
Starting to get a little more serious about working on this thing. I Picked up the cheapest transmission jack Harbor Freight sells and crawled underneath to have another look at what I need to do to fix leaks. Whatís the best way to clean this up before I start? In the past I have used oven cleaners, mineral spirits and the carwash degreaser. I like the carwash because it doesnít make a mess in my driveway but I am curious what products are being used.

02-10-2018, 05:32 PM
I went to Dollar General and got a couple of bottles of their dishwasher gel.

Dishwasher soap really cuts grease and doesn't suds up a lot. It's nice for under hood cleanups.

I spray it on with my bug/weed sprayer, then wash it off with the hose for a little pressure to move stuff.

But, I like the car wash idea too- that's where I clean deer blood out of the back of the truck. Make a mess somewhere else..... !

51 CJ3
02-10-2018, 06:33 PM
I see no reason not to take a sprayer loaded with dishwasher soap to the car wash! I took the oven cleaner to the car wash but that stuff burned me when it splashed on bare skin. Dollar General sells something called Purple Power that doesn't work to bad on airplane bellies but the stuff on the transmission and transfer case is a little tougher.

51 CJ3
02-11-2018, 11:10 AM
I have been looking at the replacement panels trying to decide if I want to try my hand at welding body parts and I have noticed nearly everything seems interchangeable between the CJ2A and CJ3A but I don't see how that can be. My CJ3A windshield was broken out because the glass lined up with the blocks on the hood (M38 on a CJ2A body). Is the windshield mount/pivot point different between the models? Also, I have read where the CJ3A rear wheel well was different to allow more leg room but I see complete wheel wells being sold for both models using the same part number.

02-12-2018, 07:59 AM
There isn't really any special skill involved in welding in replacement sheet metal. If you use the offered replacement sheet metal, and have good base metal, it's more important to clean and metal finish the base metal. You need to remove the spot metal remnants, and flatten the base metal to ensure that the new metal sits flush. When removing the rusted metal, it is best to invest in a good spot weld cutter. The cutter surrounds the spot weld and cuts out the circle. When the panel is removed, you just grind down the raised weld to make the surface flat. The reasoning behind using the spot weld cutter over just drilling out the spot welds with a drill bit is that you don't have to fill in the hole when welding in the new panel. Woodward Fab sells spot weld cutters;
When prepping the new sheet metal drill holes along the mating surface to allow plug welding of the new panel to the existing metal. The bellow example was done using Kleecos to hold the panel in place while the seem was welded. The holes were later plug welded and metal finished.

On a CJ2A wheel house, the dimension given is 33 1/2" on the top section. It does not give the measurement for the 3A or 3B. I am fairly certain that the 3A dimension was shorter, but know the 3B was. This was done to give a couple of inches more of leg room. Being that the side panels didn't change much until the M38A1/CJ5, the 3B wheel house would fit in with very little fabrication needed. A lot of CJ2A have had their wheel houses modified to allow for more leg room, with most being squared up with the top of the wheel house top. The tapper was removed behind the seat, allowing the seat more room to move rearward.

51 CJ3
02-15-2018, 01:50 PM
Anyone fabricate their own exhaust? Where can the flange be sourced? I know there are kits available that appear to be mild steel but I was thinking it would be good to have stainless. Unfortunately, since stainless exhaust systems have become fashionable to have, the local muffler shops seem to have disappeared.

02-15-2018, 02:34 PM
With stainless having different properties than mild steel or galvanized dipped mild steel exhaust, it takes different types of mandrel dies to form the bends. The old corner custom muffler shops are disappearing, and the few that are around aren't upgrading their equipment. I checked Google, and the question has been out there since 2012 on the CJ2A forum, but no responses. I did come across a manufacture that may be able to take your pattern, and mandrel bend to your specifications. Or, you can purchase the radiuses, and fabricate your own. Columbia River Mandrel Bending;

http://www.mandrelbends.com/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI0bnczdGo2QIVUrbACh2zLQ61EAAYASA AEgJRf_D_BwE

One of my neighbor brought me some stainless cut offs from the local steam plant. They even cut 45's in them. I put them on an old 360 C.I. derby engine. They sounded rather good, and had good color to them after a night of running.

51 CJ3
02-15-2018, 03:05 PM
I had considered making my own exhaust for the airplane but, having never done it before, decided my skills weren’t up to the task. Broken exhaust on an airplane will, at best, get you stranded somewhere or, worst case, cause an in flight fire. I am a little braver when it comes to trying new things on the jeep. I have a milling machine so I may be able to make my own flange but, there again, I have the tools but not the experience to use it proper and sometimes I would rather spend money than find the time to do some things.

On another note, today I removed the improperly installed roll bar. Between the busted up fender and the rust welded bolts, it put up quite a fight.

51 CJ3
02-15-2018, 05:57 PM
Columbia River Mandre Bending looks like a good source for just about everything exhaust. Thanks for the link!

It appears the stainless cutoffs were simply welded to the existing steel. If that works okay and I have good metal close to the flange, then I should be able to get some pre-bent shapes and build from there.

02-16-2018, 03:51 AM
The headers welded up alright. I wouldn't expect it to last for a lifetime, but it served it's purpose. A TIG weld with some good filler rod would have been much better, but it was an experiment to use the MIG. I was happy with the results.
I agree, welding up an aircraft exhaust would be more troublesome than what I would want to tackle. An exhaust leak/fire at 14,000 ft. would not make for a good day. What type of bird do you have?

The wheel wells don't look too bad. The driver's side looks rather repairable, but the passenger side may need replaced. By the time you straighten out the seam at the body, weld up the cracks, and blend it all together, you would have had it replaced.

51 CJ3
02-16-2018, 06:46 AM
I was thinking about getting a new top piece for the right side. I bought one of Miller’s portable inverter mig welders last fall that should do wonders for the left side. It makes about half of my welds look like I know what I am doing which is a huge improvement over what I was able to do with a buddy’s machine. It will also tig. I have a lot to learn about both methods but I have been tig welding longer than I have been mig welding.

I drove the CJ3A to town yesterday without the roll bar. Losing all that weight up high sure changed the “feel” of it.

My flier is called a Thorp T-18. It’s a small two place homebuilt airplane that cruises about 155 mph. A man who lives near Chicago built it. I don’t have a picture to share on my phone. I also have 2 non-flying projects, a Pawnee and a Cessna 150. I need to get the 150 finished and sold before I run out of money.

02-16-2018, 08:46 AM
I remember seeing a few Thorp T-18 from when we used to go to Oshkosh, back in the mid eighties. Sporty bird, with a cruise at 155. The Pawnee has potential to be fun also.

MIG welding just takes practice. The hardest thing to figure out is to what to do with the hand that was feeding filler rod.

I really like the look of my heep without the roll bar. The closest I've come to needing the roll bar was actually in a grocery store parking lot, and not on the trail.

51 CJ3
02-16-2018, 09:41 AM
Well I just sent Kaiser Willys some more money. One of the things I ordered was a repair panel for the right side wheel well. Would it be considered “important” to spot weld it like original? I don’t own a spot welder but I may be able to cheat a spot weld with the tig and I can easily tack weld it with mig or tig.

02-16-2018, 02:16 PM
I am too cheap to buy a spot welder, so I have to do the next best thing. The main reason is that in order to reach everything that would require a spot weld, a hobby spot welder just won't reach. Plug welding will hold as well, if not better than the original spots welds. Drill holes through the replacement metal, but leave the original metal base. Focus your heat on the base metal, then swirl in the replacement panel metal until the hole fills up. I would use the TIG myself, since you have it handy. You have a bit more control of the puddle with the TIG. Try using both, and let me know what you think.

51 CJ3
02-18-2018, 11:29 PM
Thanks for the tips. I will experiment some. I really didn't want to buy a spot welder. I may try using the stick welder. It would be tough to line up but a heavy piece of copper in the electrode clamp and another in the ground clamp may work as a spot welder. The nice thing about steel is it can usually be messed up, ground down and attempted again.

I am looking forward to installing the repair panel I ordered but I still wonder if I should get a Repli-Tub and return the jeep to being a 3A. I don't know which would be worth more, a 2A tub with half the steel replaced on a 3A frame or a 3A Repli-Tub on a 3A frame.

02-19-2018, 06:35 AM
With the market being hot for early Willys, you would get a descent return on investment either way you go. It all depends on what you want to invest.

On my CJ2A, I try to find original 2A parts. The only aftermarket replacement parts that I've used thus far has been the windshield inner frame and glass. The outer frame was used and abused, so it took some work to make it serviceable, but it now functions well. I have no plans on selling my rig, so the return of investment isn't a big deal to me.

51 CJ3
02-22-2018, 06:29 AM
I think I need to put the CJ3 windshield frame back on to see exactly why the windshield broke out. It is pretty obvious the damage came from the blocks on the hood. If I remember correctly the blocks rested on the glass when the hood was raised but I pulled that frame and hung it on the wall about 6 years ago so I should take another look. If there is a difference and I decide to keep the current tub then I will have to change/move the blocks or buy a windshield assembly to match the tub I have. The windshield assembly I am using will eventually have to go back the CJ2A I borrowed it from.

02-22-2018, 01:24 PM
The CJ3 windshield is taller than the 2A windshield. I have seen where folks have added extensions to the hood blocks to move them forward, to keep the windshield from being knocked out or scratched. People opted for the CJ 3 windshield to gain a little more head room with a top installed. I'd just assume to have the windshield down myself, but the long suffering misses.... not so much.

51 CJ3
02-22-2018, 02:50 PM
My CJ3 windshield frame has a lot of surface rust on it. Am I better off to sand blast it or have it dipped? If dipping is the best, what terms do I use to search for a shop?

Had a little parts snaffu with Kaiser Willys. Amazing customer service over there. They fixed me right up, no problem.

02-23-2018, 05:54 AM
I'm not a fan of sand blasting. I haven't tried baking soda, but I'm sure that it doesn't solve all the issues associated with blasting. Depending on the media used, the process can harden the metal, and later cause cracks to form. Sheet metal, you have to be careful with warping the metal, from the friction created during blasting. The mess is another factor. Now there is a new process out there on the market that claims to not have the issues listed above. The dustless blasting company uses water with the media to keep everything cool and dust free. I don't know what the mess would be afterwards, but their marketing shows people blasting in their driveways and back yards.....

A good source of an at home dipping process was covered under "The Grand Willys Project". http://www.oldwillysforum.com/forum/showthread.php?1041-Grand-Willys-Project . A gentlemen from Australia is in the process of building a newer grand Cherokee drive line under a Jeep pickup. He uses a concoction of citric acid and water to strip paint and light rust off of all of his parts. He then puts lanolin oil on the metal for a protectant while the pieces await fabrication. The whole story is a great read, and Marcus is a craftsman in his metal working skills.

I personally like to use the nylon brushes that Harbor freight and Menards sells. They can eat through several layers of paint, clean rust, and prep the surface for new paint all at the same time. I use them exclusively, because they are cheap, do not cause heat, and will cut through Bondo. With a 3/8 VSP Drill, it does not take a lot of effort to use. On average, I have used four to six brushes for an entire jeep. The nylon doesn't shoot shards of wire into your skin either.

51 CJ3
02-23-2018, 06:57 AM
I have a Dewalt drill like that. Their customer service is good too. The keyless chuck didn’t work right out of the box. It wouldn’t grip anything. Twist it as tight as possible and the bit would slip if not just fall out. They gave me a choice between another keyless or a keyed chuck. It was the only keyless chuck I ever had a problem with but I opted for a keyed chuck. I figure it either had a bad part from the factory or was contaminated somehow.

I had considered dipping the frame myself. I have been wanting to try it on some airplane parts. Unfortunately, my battery charger is one of the fully automatic varieties. I know a welder can be used but mine are inverter machines so I doubt they will work. There are some drawbacks to using the latest technologies. I will have to give the nylon brushes a try. I like scotch brite wheels on the die grinder but they don’t last long.

02-23-2018, 09:52 AM
Dewalts seem to last the best. Although I have gone through a few of them. I average a drill for every two heeps. Once I start, I typically don't stop until I run out of items to clean. The drill tends to get hot, and the side load of the brush works against how the drill was designed to operate. The fine paint dust tends to collect around the windings, and wears out the brushes. I've taken them apart and cleaned the brushes with limited success. The springs that hold the brushes are fairly flimsy, so they need to be stretched to maintain proper tension on the brushes. There is a coating on the armature that prevents corrosion, but once you turn the armature to true it up, the armature doesn't last long afterwards. I buy the extended warranty from Lowes, but now they require the original receipt to honor the warranty. I'm hard on electric power tools, but will oil and maintain my air tools. I have no complaints with the keyless chuck. They take quite a beating, but have worked well. I have searched around for a more suitable device to run the nylon brushes, but want to keep the tool light weight.

The electrolysis method of rust removal would be something to perfect, for an at home process. I know my old Lincoln AC/DC stick welder has a setting that plumbers used to use for thawing frozen pipes. If I remember correctly, at 75 amps, there is a circle on the dial. This is what the circle was to represent. I never knew anything about it until I was welding some out riggers on a trailer for a retired plumber.

51 CJ3
02-23-2018, 12:56 PM
I think the hard part with electrolysis at home is with the size of the tank. It can be done at relatively low amperage, it just takes a while. Small parts are easy. I watched a video of a trailer being done. They essentially made a swimming pool using a pond liner or plastic sheeting and suspended the trailer from a rack over head. Although not as big, finding a container to suspend the windshield frame in isn’t an economical task if you don’t already have what you need. A poly stock tank is the first thing that comes to mind but they are a few hundred dollars.

02-23-2018, 01:25 PM
I put some thought into the electrolysis process. You can use your automatic charger, but may want to put a battery in line to make the system more efficient. Use a few pieces of rebar, and connect them together for a ground. A wooden box with a good tarp would suffice for a container.

02-27-2018, 07:25 AM
Another less complicated option for rust removal is Metal Rescue. I haven't personally tried it, but might be worth a look.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Workshop-Hero-Metal-Rescue-Rust-Remover-Bath-5-Gallon-WH570055/231895665421?hash=item35fe0f0b0d:g:yAUAAOSwImRYEAp u

51 CJ3
02-27-2018, 06:39 PM
It’s worth a look. Appears to be widely available...Home Depot, Walmart, auto parts stores.

51 CJ3
03-06-2018, 09:48 PM
And so it begins for real... Yanked the transmission and transfer case today. Oil was milky. Corrosion on some of the gears and at least one chipped tooth in the transmission. Haven't opened the transfer case yet but I am expecting more of the same. The front drive shaft needs u-joints and the slip joint is wore out. It felt like the pinion bearings were rough in the front pumpkin so I opened it up. The oil looked okay but it was gritty and there is some corrosion on everything I can see. I don't have a spreader so tomorrow I will see if I can build one, take inventory of what I need and place an order.

51 CJ3
03-10-2018, 07:45 PM
I stumbled across a good T90C transmission for a lot less than I can overhaul my T90A. Will the difference in gearing be very noticeable for general use?

On another note... my pinion bearings in the front are shot along with the carrier bearings. Having a devil of a time trying to get everything apart.

03-12-2018, 06:00 AM
Here is what I could find on the differences between the A model compared to the C model. The gear ratio is a bit higher, so you will have a little bit better top end speed. Maybe not noticeable, but slight difference.


51 CJ3
03-12-2018, 07:23 AM
Thanks for the link. There is some good discussion there. I had found the transmission specs on the Novak website. Sourcing parts may be an issue if I need parts in the future but I haven’t checked any further than my normal sources yet either. The T90A needs a cluster gear and sliding gear. The T90C was a side shift but needs nothing and would bolt right in. The previous owner was talking about throwing it in the trash so I rescued it.

Front differential: I used a puller on the carrier bearings and ruined every shim doing it. I knocked the inner pinion bearing cup out with a hammer and punch not realizing there are shims there too. I am concerned about the test fitting process when it goes back together. Is there a way to remove the bearings and races in the differential that doesn’t destroy the shims?

03-12-2018, 01:16 PM
There is not a good way to pull the pinion without damaging the shims. There is no great way to punch out a pinion race without using brute force. A tip to setting your new pinion would be to take the old bearings a races, and clearance the mating surfaces of both the bearing and race so they slide onto the pinion, and housing so you do not have to press on and off the bearings each time you check your pinion depth. Just clearance enough to allow the bearing and race enough to slide into place, but not too much. Usually you measure the shim pack that was removed to get a base line measurement. Measure each shim individually, then add all the measurements together to get the proper shim height.

A good point of reference on You Tube, is a guy that goes by Metal shaper. He has a lot of good information on how to do things correctly. He shows some special tools for differential work that would make life so much more simple.

51 CJ3
03-12-2018, 04:41 PM
My plan was to measure the old shims to get a starting point so it sounds like I am on the right track. The old bearings are gone. The cage fell off the inner pinion bearing when I pulled the pinion (had to use a puller to get the race off the shaft) and the carrier bearings fought me so hard the cages got ripped off in the process. I thought I was going to have to cut the right one off. Between the rollers in the transmission and the rollers from the broken cone bearings and u-joints, I have lots of rollers rolling around the shop today. :o

03-12-2018, 07:37 PM
That shoots that idea. No problems, just will take some extra time to dial it in. I watched the video to see if I could learn something new, and he recommended to making the ring gear bearings oversized for ease of shiming, but not the pinion. I see what he is saying about if you measure the Shims, you shouldn't need to do the pinion depth more than once. That is true to a point. I still like the option to be able to take it all apart until I have had everything to my liking. All in all, he covered the process really well.

51 CJ3
03-13-2018, 06:34 AM
Thanks for the video reference. I forget those are out there because I have limited internet on my computer and streaming video maxes it out pretty fast. The new phone is unlimited but old habits die hard. Itís good to see the procedure I am about to undertake and it saved me a potential headache. I had neglected to mark the bearing caps. Fortunately, I hadnít cleaned those parts yet and was able to match the caps to the position they were in by lining up the rust and sludge patterns. Of course I donít know that the last person who had it apart knew what they were doing either.

03-13-2018, 08:51 AM
I worked at a Ford tractor dealer, and we dealt with 2Ns through the industrial series. We worked a lot of rear end gears with various issues. The worst I ever saw was a shyster who was taking his tractor to an auction barn. The tractor ran well, but the ring gear had missing teeth. The owner of the business to where I worked was a shyster extraordinaire, so he took on the "repair" work. I was instructed to remove the shims out of the axle to bring the ring gear closer to the pinion. No parts were installed, even though the pinion bearings were shot. After I put it back together, we took the fork lift and picked up the rear of the tractor, and took it out of the shop. The owner came and loaded it on his trailer and took off. We knew that the new owner was not going to be happy when it failed. That heart burn of having to do such a dirty deal has stuck with me ever since. After that instance, we did have a farmer who purchased a Allis Chalmers D-17 tractor at an auction. It had a miss to it, and the farmer did try and do a tune up, but it still had a miss. He brought it by the shop to see if we could figure out what was going on. First thing I tried was a compression test. The results were around 75, 70, 0, 75. After taking the tester off the number three hole, we turned the engine over again with just a finger over the spark plug hole. Nothing, not even a breeze. We called the farmer, and he gave the go ahead to pull the head to see what was up. When the head was pulled, it was a surprise to what we found. There was no piston, but in it's place was a chunk of maple log. Evidently, the previous owner had drove the wood into the cylinder to seal off a cracked sleeve. Another call was made to the farmer, and he came down to see it for himself. He gave the go ahead to pull the sleeve, (after drilling out the log) and order up the replacement parts. If I remember correctly, we didn't have $50 in a new sleeve, head gasket,a used connecting rod, and a piston/bearings/rings. The crank had the old bearings hose clamped in place to keep the oil pressure somewhat stable. The crank polished up nicely with some emery cloth. After the engine was reassembled, it ran lie a top. Used equipment and vehicles, you just never know what you are getting.

Computers are nice, when they work. It wasn't too many years ago that my office was filled with books and catalogues with all the information I needed. Slowly I have converted over to having everything on line. I once asked one of our suppliers if he had a catalogue for me to thumb through. He looked at me like I was from a third world country. We don't have books anymore, he promptly quipped. I like Kaiser Willys, because they still send out a free catalogue. Every year I still thumb through it, and make a plan on what I want, and what I need. The long suffering misses tends to want to hide it from the top of the coffee table, but I have figured out the hiding places.... Modern conveniences are nice, but we need to remember how to do things manually. Smart phones are great, but people let them become an electronic leash. A walk through the store, all you see are folks, (young and old) glued to their phones. I can't tell how many times I've been run into by folks not paying attention to where they are going for staring at their phone.
Rant over.

51 CJ3
03-13-2018, 09:57 AM
I hear you. I have gotten to where I like using a notepad to keep my books on. I find searchable pdf files invaluable in the field (as long as the battery will last anyway) and the wind doesn’t mess with the pages but, when I am in the recliner researching something, nothing beats paper.

03-13-2018, 11:53 AM
When we would get new personnel in, I would hand out composition note books to keep notes in. I know my memory is crap, so it helps to write down everything. I had one guy that was not a great mechanic, but was an excellent note taker. He filled at least three note books with a quick reference for common part numbers, then if we had an issue, what the problem is, and what the solution was. He ended up being the best tech I had. Now he has moved on to another division in our outfit, and is the lead for testing new vehicles. The techs do have the military manuals online, but they are written for the average 19 year old soldier. It's great for changing part(s), but very lousy for troubleshooting.

03-13-2018, 08:50 PM
And the nice thing about the KWAS catalog, you can put it in the basket in the "reading room" and pretty soon you become very familiar with a lot of Jeep parts!

"But, I just read it for the articles"

51 CJ3
02-26-2019, 10:57 AM
Not quite ready for this but decided to get a repli-tub kit while I had the money. I am pretty new at this kind of work but looks and feels pretty good to me.

02-26-2019, 01:57 PM
51 CJ3,

I've read good things about the Repli-tub. One of our other members, TJones, has purchased one as well. He is in the process of building his, so he would be a good source of information on his experience. Good Luck! We are here if you need any encouragement!


51 CJ3
03-08-2019, 10:17 AM
...I had neglected to mark the bearing caps. Fortunately, I hadn’t cleaned those parts yet and was able to match the caps to the position they were in by lining up the rust and sludge patterns. Of course I don’t know that the last person who had it apart knew what they were doing either.

I finally got back to being able to look at this thing again. A while back I downloaded the military manuals for the Jeep because I figured they would be a little more in depth than the Universal Jeep manual since military members aren’t always assigned to jobs thry are best suited to do. I was right. The civilian manual mentions the factory marks on the caps but the military manual tells how the caps are marked and includes pictures so I had a look at mine. Sure enough, they are factory marked and the last person to install the caps had them in the wrong position. Now I am glad I didn’t mark them.

03-08-2019, 01:18 PM
To this day, all the manuals are written and illustrated for the average 18 year old soldier to comprehend.

51 CJ3
03-09-2019, 10:49 AM
I discovered emilitary manuals when I was trying to fix an electrical problem on one of the M1008 trucks we have at the fire department. None of the local shops knew what to do mostly because no one understood it’s 24 volt for starting and everthing else is 12 volt. They all worked off the assumption it was a standard 12 volt diesel pickup or the whole thing was wired for 24 volt and had connected the lightbars and radio in a way that constantly drained one or both batteries. Last year we added an M35 as a brush truck so I downloaded the manuals for it and, on a whim, I grabbed the Jeep manuals while I was at it. I got an amazing amount of information for very little money although some of the scans missed a letter here and there.