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Thread: My first vehicle! 1956 CJ5

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  1. #1
    Senior Member 56willys's Avatar
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    My first vehicle! 1956 CJ5

    Hello, i have recently purchased my first project car. i found it in a local newspaper ad, and picked it up a couple months ago. it is a 1956 willys cj5, all stock drivetrain f4-134 hurricane, T90, Dana 18. I've already made some progress. When I got it the wiring was completely junk. Only one running light worked and it would turn on and off randomly and sparks came from the dash. It would also start and run with the key off so i'd have to disconnect the battery to kill the engine. So first i removed the dash and ripped out every wire then got a universal harness/fuse block. I have it installed and ignition wires done. There are also no brakes. Theres only drums in the rear and one of which has a 2 inch long cut in it from an angle grinder. Both are gouged to much to get resurfaced. Also missing wheel cylinders and the lining on the shoes is completly gone. The gas tank is missing, previous owner ziptied a plastic lawnmower tank to the ebrake cable on firewall. Only a few inches from the exhaust, nothing unsafe there. The body is extremely rusty, floors are gone. And the passenger side only has one body mount thats strong. Now on to the good stuff. The drivetrain is complete and runs amazingly. even in below freezing temps it only cranks for a second then fires and runs beautifully. The transmission shifts super smooth and the detents are still strong, feels like brand new. At first the oil was turning white and frothy. Theres no other signs of a blown headgasket. has good compresion and never smokes. It also had sat almost a year without being run before I got it. So I changed the oil, got a new filter and put in non detergent oil (it had reguler oil before.) and then drove it around the yard for over 2 hours and got it up to temperature. Probably the first time in many years it was run for more than a few minutes. Now everytime i run it the oil is still clean. I also got an original Jeep hardtop and doors from a 64 model. The top is in great shape, passenger door is good but drivers is missing glass and inner panel. My plan right now is to make everything mechanically reliable. I'll probably leave the body how it is for now, just patch the rust so it's safe. My goal is to have it at the Bantam Jeep Heritage Festival this June, then make it roadworthy for when I get my drivers license in a couple years. Any help and advice is greatly appreciated. I also have a YouTube channel @jacobnovosel so please go check that out to see videos of the jeep. Looking forward to many awesome adventure with my jeep. Thanks Jacob.
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Welcome 56willys! That project looks pretty good. I think your being a little tough on the old girl! The engine compartment looks pretty neat and clean. It has the seat springs, which if you can restore them will save you some money. The top is always a big plus, they usually have a history of their own. I think you have some un-hacking to do and it will be a good runner.

    Keep us updated with photos and ask away. This forum has plenty of helpful people.

  3. #3
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    Yes, welcome! Your jeep looks quite good, actually. If the engine and other main drivetrain components are operating well, it won't take you long to get her running just like you want. The hard top is an added bonus. Did it come with the jeep when you bought it or did you pick it up separately? It's pretty cool that it matches the color of your jeep. It will look good on it when you get it on.

  4. #4
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    I agree. Looks like a good starting point.
    Jeff
    '51 CJ3A
    '47 CJ2A

  5. #5
    Senior Member 56willys's Avatar
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    Thank you all for the welcome! Yes the seat springs are good, I've already replaced some of the missing springs and will recover them in the future. The top came with it. The gentleman i bought it from got the 56 as a parts jeep for his 64 cj5 then realized it was to nice to cut up for parts. So he decided to sell it, and didn't need the top so i got it. I'm not sure but think to was original to the 64. And yes it will take some work but having a good drivetrain is awesome. i'm not going to restore it just make a fun driveable jeep that I take on trails and daily drive.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    You have a great goal for your project. With a good power train you can drive it, enjoy it and fix up what you want as you go.

  7. #7
    Senior Member 56willys's Avatar
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    Winch installed on the CJ5

    I got a winch mounted on the willys. It's a Warn M8000 Thats been sitting in the shop for years. My Dad got it with a TJ but that Jeep was wrecked years ago so then it was stored intill now. The engage/disengage lever was frozen. Would not turn to allow freespool. Was like this when we got it. So I tore apart the planatery gear system and found that the cylinder that slides back and forth was rusted solid. But with some work and penetrating oil it came lose. Regreased and new gaskets installed it works great. I'm guessing it got water in it and was never cleaned and also not used often. To mount the winch i used a universal flat plate on the frame rails. Then cutout the bumber for the fairlead. Because the fairlead hangs below the winch plate and the bumber is higher than the frame. I added 2 towhooks and used 3 hardened bolts on each side. I also mounted those vintage unity foglights. I got them with my new windsheild they were mounted on the top corners. I like them on the bumber better. And on the windsheild it could not be folded down.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member 56willys's Avatar
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    One wire alternator

    Got this from Classic Military Vehicles located in Arkansas. One wire alternator and bracket specifically for L & F head motors. The alternator delivers 45 amps at 1800 RPM's, 63 amps at 2400 RPM's and 74 amps at 3500 RPM's. And has the 5/8" v belt pulley. The bracket is made in U.S.A. My original generator I think was okay but was 6 volt and my voltage regulater was bad. I 'm converting the jeep to twelve volt and wanted a one wire to make things easier. This looked like the best alt/bracket i could find and so far it's working great. I also got the fuse block from ebay for $30! 14 circuit every wire is a different color and is labeled. Even came with headlight plugs, zipties, and plastic snakeskin. There's not tons of wire but for a Jeep there's plenty. Would need more for a truck or large car. not the greatest quality but for the price you can't beat it. I mounted on the drivers side firwall by parking brake lever. Used that spot because I have a drivers and passenger side heater and don't witch one will be used. So it will work with either one.
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  9. #9
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    I converted mine to 12 volts also. It is nice for charging the cell phone in the parade!

    Its coming along nicely. The winch will be a great addition.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    That alternator looks like it grew there - very neat job. The wire block is nce too. It should make up into a very nice conversion. Sometimes it is best to just start over.....

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