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Thread: New guy - Have a lot to learn

  1. #1
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    New guy - Have a lot to learn

    Hi everyone! I recently inherited a 1946 cj2a from my grandfather that passed away. This Willy's had a lot of sentimental value to me and since owning it, I've really enjoyed learning about them. However - I come from the newer school of vehicles and I have limited mechanical knowledge to be honest so I have some pretty basic questions. I'll attach a picture so you can check it out as well!

    1- When it sits for a week or so, it won't start unless I throw some starter fluid in the carb. Once it fires, it runs great! The next day I'll start it up and it starts just fine. Any ideas where I should start looking? It sat for a couple years and about a month ago when I got it running again, I had the same problem. I did put some fresh ethanol free gas in since then.

    2- I had to replace the battery and I was surprised to see it was an 8v battery instead of a 6v. From what I can tell, it won't charge anymore than 8v when it's running. Wouldn't this be a problem for battery life?

    3- Seats... I want to find some original seats to put back in so if anyone has anything, please let me know!

    I want to get this to be a little more reliable so I can drive it a couple times a week especially since the weather is getting nicer here in central PA. I removed the top that was on it since I plan to use this as an occasional driver when it's nice out.

    Thanks in advance for any info guys!
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    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Welcome CMT-1109!

    Your 2A is a good looking example. These Jeeps are fairly simple machines, but they do have a mind of their own. They can be crotchety old girls that work wonderful one day, and like crap the next. With your starting issue, it is most likely the fuel pump is losing its prime. The fuel pump is working, but when it is parked, the fuel finds its way back down into the tank/fuel line.
    There is a fix for your charging issue. LarrBeard wrote an informative article on how to go about setting up your voltage regulator to charge the 8 volt battery. He should be on later today to apply his expertise, if not I'll hunt up his article and paste it in here.
    If you are looking for original seats, you may check with the guys over at the East Coast Willys Association forum. There are a few guys there that have hoards of Willys parts, or know where they are hidden.

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    Thanks a bunch gmwillys! I thought the same thing about the starting issue but wasn't sure what the best way to approach it would be. I'll check out the East coast forum soon as well as LarrBeard's article! Thanks for the heads up!

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    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    How Do I Make An 8-Volt Regulator?

    Quote Originally Posted by CMT-1109 View Post
    Thanks a bunch gmwillys! I thought the same thing about the starting issue but wasn't sure what the best way to approach it would be. I'll check out the East coast forum soon as well as LarrBeard's article! Thanks for the heads up!
    Yeah, GMWillys knew I'd have to check in on this.

    That is really a nice Jeep, but the paint would have gone on more evenly if someone had swept the leaves off between coats … I’m kidding. That is a really neat pattern.

    I’d check to see if someone had adjusted the standard 6-volt regulator to charge the 8-volt battery or maybe even put in an 8-volt regulator. The easiest way to do this is look at the voltage on the battery with the engine at a high idle speed. A standard 6-volt regulator will cut out at about 7.3 or 7.4 volts. An 8-volt regulator will be significantly higher.

    To top off the 8-volt battery, charge would need to cut off at about 9.7 volts or so. At that voltage, you are getting close to having headlight, brake light and parking light issues – that’s really high. Cutting out at about 8.6 to 8.8 volts would probably be an all-round compromise; good battery charge to reduce sulphation, enough juice to spin the starter just a bit faster and not so high as to make the headlights turn into flashbulbs (do you kids remember flashbulbs?).

    If you want to try to reset the regulator, it really isn’t hard. One word of caution before you take my advice – I’ve really not done this on any of my regulators, but I have stayed at a lot of Holiday Inn Expresses ….

    Get the unit to where you can work on it, clean all the crud off the cover and take the cover off. It’s always good to start with clean contacts. Pull some really fine emery (>600 grit) through the points. Then, take a piece of paper, soak it in alcohol and pull it between all of the contact points in the regulator. That starts us out with clean contact points.

    There is a photo at the bottom of this post, refer to it. You will find three relays in the regulator. You are going to work on the one that has the coil with no big wire on it, just a lot of turns of little wire. What happens is that when the generator/battery voltage gets high enough, enough current flows through all of that little wire to open the contact points. When they open up, the generator/battery voltage drops a bit, the points close … and the process goes on. They run more like a buzzer than a clunk-clunk relay.

    The points are held closed by a spring. What we want to do is to add a little more force to the spring holding the contacts closed. That makes the coil need a higher voltage to open the contact points. You can do this by bending the tabs that hold the spring further apart. I’d suggest bending the bottom spring since that doesn’t fool with the moving armature of the relay. I can’t recommend how much to bend, I’d suggest a little at a time – and it make take several tries.

    Adjust the tab, reinstall the regulator and start the Jeep. Watch the ammeter until the charge rate settles out, then check battery voltage. If it’s lower than you want, spread tabs a bit more. If it’s too high, go back the other way.

    Let us know how this turns out ….

    (Oh, by the way - down in the Tech Library there are a couple of papers with more than you really want to know about 3-relay regulatore)
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    Last edited by LarrBeard; 04-14-2019 at 01:29 PM. Reason: Corrected Oops

  5. #5
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    Wow! Thanks for the input LarrBeard.

    The paint is part of the sentimental value because I helped pick out the leaves when I was younger and my grandfather sprayed them, imprinted them onto the Jeep and then filled it in. He did this one at a time throughout the whole Jeep. I will be keeping it that way as long as possible, that's for sure!

    I checked the battery at idle and it was 8v, under throttle it went to 8.4 so I'm assuming the regulator is adjusted correctly. If I run into problems, I'll be sure to come back and try what you recommended since you stayed at a Holiday inn Express. Flashbulb? I don't think my smart phone ever came with one of those. Haha I very much appreciate your sense of humor.

    I attached a picture of the gauges at idle. At times, my temp will creep to almost 200 and then work it's way back down to 180. Is this normal? I also ran into a problem of antifreeze blowing out of the radiator cap and overflow line but I'm thinking it may have been overfilled. Is there a general rule of thumb when filling it? My overflow tank seems to be missing... Ha I did replace the cap with a new 4lb cap. I haven't driven it anywhere but started it and all looked good.

    Regarding the fuel pump losing prime, do I need to replace it or is there something else I need to look at? Could it just be a small leak or is this normal?

    Thanks for all the helpful info so far gentlemen!
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    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    The old CJ radiators do not get filled all the way to the neck. You need at least an inch from the neck. This would give you an inch above the top of the core of the radiator. This will give you enough room for coolant expansion.

    On my 2A, the fuel pump was replaced, but would sit for months at a time, being that I was out of town. It isn't a terrible thing that the fuel drains back. The pump pulls the fuel up, and fills the upper fuel lines and the fuel bowl. In short, replacing the fuel pump may not remedy the situation totally.

    You may look into clear coating the custom camouflage that you and your Granddad had come up with. This would preserve the paint for years to come.

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    Mine will not pull the fuel enough to start once it sits for a week or so unless I get it running with starter fluid. I'll try to get a video of it but not sure how to upload it because of the size.

    My response to LarrBeard isn't showing up either. Am I on probation and being censored or something? Ha

  8. #8
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    Probation

    Quote Originally Posted by CMT-1109 View Post
    Mine will not pull the fuel enough to start once it sits for a week or so unless I get it running with starter fluid. I'll try to get a video of it but not sure how to upload it because of the size.

    My response to LarrBeard isn't showing up either. Am I on probation and being censored or something? Ha
    Naw, you're not on probation - if you were we'd have been there long ago. Sometimes computers can be as cranky as old Jeeps.

    And you've done nothing to be censored ...

    My question - would an in-line check valve hold fuel at the pump? I have that "issue" as well.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    You noted; " At times, my temp will creep to almost 200 and then work it's way back down to 180."

    If you have a 180 degree 'stat, that's normal. The coolant at the back of the engine where the sensor is gets hotter than coolant at the front around the thermostat. When the front end gets to 180, the 'stat opens.

    I have a 165 degree stat in the truck and it will crawl up to about 175, then open - and then go down just below 160 before everybody gets their act together.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by LarrBeard View Post
    Naw, you're not on probation - if you were we'd have been there long ago. Sometimes computers can be as cranky as old Jeeps.

    And you've done nothing to be censored ...

    My question - would an in-line check valve hold fuel at the pump? I have that "issue" as well.
    An inline check valve is a good idea but shouldn't the filter be doing that job as well? Sorry, I guess I should've mentioned mine does have a fuel filter. What do you end up doing LarrBeard to get yours started after sitting awhile?

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