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Thread: New to forum, need help with M38A1

  1. #1
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    Red face New to forum, need help with M38A1

    Hi to everyone. I am new to this forum, and am joining because I need advice and direction for my M38A1. I am an Army Veteran (no Korea), and have had this jeep for about 7 years. The F134 engine has locked up, and needs to be rebuilt. I did a lot of work on the jeep myself, but honestly know that an engine rebuild is way to difficult for me, and I do not have the right tools. So I am looking for sources for a rebuild, preferably in Texas, but can ship the engine anywhere to the right price and person. It is used mainly in special events and parades in Hood County, Texas (see pictures). Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance, David Johnson.

    IMG_6097.jpgIMG_6097.jpgIMG_4905.jpg

  2. #2
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    Rebuilding an F-134 engine is one of the most basic rebuild jobs for just about any engine re-builder. You should not have to look far to find a reliable rebuild shop.

    Ask Mrs. Google (she knows a lot more than Mr. Google) about engine re-builders in your area and then start calling and visiting the ones that look promising. Parts are commonly available for just about everything internal to the block and even peculiar M38A1 parts aren't that hard to find.

    And, it's a wise man who knows his limitations - so getting it done correctly is a good move on your part.

    Keep us informed on how it goes; like why is it locked up, what went right and wrong with the project, and such. We always learn from each other.

  3. #3
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    Occasionally I see those engines ready to run on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/2382510764/ That is for some reason yours is not repairable.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    If you can't find a good shop locally, you can ship it here http://www.hartsmachineservice.com/ John Buskirk is quite familiar with 134's, and about as good a machinist as it gets.
    Last edited by bmorgil; 09-08-2020 at 08:22 AM.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Welcome stwdjj.

    Out of curiosity, what were the events that led to the engine locking up? Did the oil pressure drop to zero, or did it overheat in a parade? This will help to determine the severity of the condition of the engine.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Good point gm, I assumed it was rebuild-able. That could be a bad assumption if it tied up while it was running!

    With gm's point solidly in mind, I would get the manual and learn to tear it down to a "short block". I am sure you can do it if you are handy with hand tools. The tear down is the easy part. Easier perhaps than pulling the motor out initially. The rebuild takes a little skill and familiarity. If you can get the peripherals off the engine, Carb, intake/exhaust manifold, fan, water pump, cylinder head and oil pan you can learn all you need to know about should you or should you not rebuild it. If you have to ship it this will make it much easier. The machine shop will usually charge you to tear it down, so you might save a little cash. If they are going to assemble it, they will need all the parts well packaged and well marked. Keep your parts together and clearly marked.

    Pictures and a little help from the forum and I am sure we can get close to helping you make a decision. One thing to always remember, whenever a motor gets hot or freezes with water it can crack the iron parts. You will probably not know if there are cracks until the shop checks it for them. Some cracks can be repaired. I have had a few occasions where I have had a block or head go off to the shop only to get a phone call that it is junk. So gm's point about what happened is very important.

    Outside of Austin far from you, is Texas Speed. I use them for high performance LS cylinder heads. They are very good. You might give them a call. It is possible they know a shop near you. You are close to Fort Worth. There are a few shops there. Do not go to a shop that does not do "classic engines". You want someone who knows to look up the old information. There are a couple things to do correctly on a 134. If you are not familure with the old school, you might get a few head scratches.
    Last edited by bmorgil; 09-08-2020 at 08:48 AM.

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