So now that I'm re-united with my Jeep, let the tweaking begin.
First off the Heep started life as a 1980 CJ7 and is currently comprised of the following: AMC 401 (stock, unknown mileage, oil pressure a little lower than I'd like it to be), T-18, Dana 20 (TeraLo 3.15:1 low gears, upgraded outputs, twin stick), Dana 60, 14 bolt, 4.56 gears, Detroit lockers, spring over with 7 leaf waggy springs, shackle reversal in front, revolver shackles in rear, front tube fenders, rear comp cut corners, hummer wheels, 38*12.50 Swampers, 6 point cage, etc.
In other words all the big stuff is there and it's pretty sweet, but there are some things that could use some improvement / repairs.
The following is the list of stuff I think I need or want to do to get it where I want it to be. My primary short term goal is to make it dead reliable. I don't want to worry about anything.
- It runs warmer than I think it should. At idle or crawling around it hasn't shown any issues, but rolling down the road at 45+ the temp climbs. It has a 3 core brass/copper radiator and a dual 12" electric fan rated at 2500 cfm. I'm looking onto replacing the electric with a big fixed 19" fan and shroud, replacing the open element air filter with a cold air duct, replacing the radiator with an aluminum one, wrapping the exhaust, louvering the hood, high flow water pump .... UPDATE: problem solved w/ 19.25" fixed fan (no clutch) which at above idle RPMs will move enough air to suck small pets through the radiator and keeps the temps right where they should be.
- My front drive shaft is just a little too short so that when the front is pulling and the rear is hung up, it can pull apart at the slip yoke. As demonstrated at Crozet ...new Tom Woods driveshaft installed - problem seems to be solved
- the mechanical clutch linkage could be improved, there are some clearance issues and the angles are off.
- It starts hard when warm. Could be the heat or the battery's charge, or wiring.
- It needs a tranny/xfercase skid. UPDATE: Thanks to Derrek I've got a stock CJ skid in place. However I want to find a 36"x18" piece of plate to make a smooth skid and gain ~ 2" of clearance.
- The rear axle to gas tank clearance is ~ 1.5" I want to move the tank out of the way.
- I need an E-brake. The cable and brakes are there, but I need to install/fab the handle end of things. (It would really help with the front end digs and start/stopping on an incline)
- I need working turn signals and running lights.
- I want to modify the wind shield hinges so it's easy to pull the wind shield. I wish I'd done this before encountering a tree on boulder highway at Crozet and cracking my fiberglass windshield frame ...
- I want to paint / preserve everything.
- The cage doesn't protect the rear seat passengers.
- I need a dash and gages that work. The only parts that work right now are H2O temp, oil press, volts, fan switch, headlight switch, and windshield wiper switch.
- My power steering hoses leak. hoses fixed
- The front shocks rub on full stuff.
- I want to re-do the exhaust perhaps to include coated shorty headers and the 3" flowmaster. nice Y pipe and flowmaster installed.
- I want to replace the timing chain, oil pump gears, and timing cover to get the oil pressure up where it should be.
- This winter I'd like to rebuild the engine. The 401s have crazy potential, and I'd like to get it running like it should. A decent cam, correct clearances, a touch more compression (stock is 8:1), a smidge of port work, and I should be able to get 300 hp and 400+ ft-lbs easy. But I'll also look into if it makes better sense to swap something else in (EFI, more common, cheaper ..)
- I want to tweak the suspension to lower it a little, better support the main leafs, loose the revolver shackles ... At Crozet the front leaves would fan out at droop/climbing which lead to the front drive shaft separating - I want to find quality spring clamps to tie the 2nd leaf to the main leaf.Update #2: spring menders in Norfolk rebuilt my front spring packs w/ two heavy duty spring clamps per pack on the rear 1/2 and two normal clamps per pack on the front which should prevent the excessive fanning of the leaves and deforming of the main leaf - more expensive than expected though.
- Brakes are soft - It may be that the stock master cylinder doesn't move enough fluid to clamp the 1 ton brakes completely or worn parts.
- I need a real battery hold down. As demonstrated at Crozet ...universal battery clamp installed - problem solved
- I need to mount the winch and hook it up (never used but 5 or 6 yr old warn 8274 is still in the garage). 8274 mounted
- fill all the holes in the tub and fire wall.
- maybe increase tire size - I've got the room and axle to support it.
- mount fender flares
- rebuild the king pins - there is a touch of wobble.
- clean up the many times modified 1980 wiring.
- move the electric fuel pump lower and closer to gas tank (they are designed to push not suck and mine is high on the fender)
As you can see, there's plenty I'd like to do. In order to help me get some of these things done, if anyone has any of the following taking up space in their garage, I'd be happy to take them off your hands:
- Hand operated E-brake lever any make/model - a piece of plate that could become a tranny/xfercase skid - YJ width extended shackle
I'm excited to have the Heep back and look fwd to spending some time working on it a wheeling it.
If you want fuel injection, you could probably get the Howell or AFI kit for your 401 or even concoct your own homebrew fuel injection a la GM TBI from the bone yard. Going to rebuild or replace the oil pump? Not sure if you want a hi-volume pump, but maybe a smidge of shimming the relief spring might help get the oil pressure up some. I'd also consider getting a Painless wiring harness and redoing your wiring altogether. You may be able to save some $$$ on the radiator if you get a universal one a la Jeg's or Summit, you'll just need the dimensions. A 16-19" fan with a higher CFM rating and shroud should help, but when was the last time the thermostat was checked/replaced and the cooling system flushed?
Glad to hear you got your Jeep back and looking forward to the progress!
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I installed a great huge fixed mechanical fan this weekend (19.5"). When you rev the engine, it moves enough air to suck birds and small dogs into the engine bay. The shroud I have should be the perfect size for this fan (just barely), but I can't get the fan centered in the shroud well enough to keep it from rubbing, so I'm running it without the shroud.
Initial testing is promising - I can head down the road at high way speed with out the temps coming up at all, and at low speeds/rpms if the temp do start to come up, increasing the rpms for just a minute, drops the temps quickly.
This week I hope to work the front drive shaft issue, and cut the runflat ridge off the bead-locks and mount the new rear tires.
Also I want to find the leaf spring clamps that are a 'U' with the bolt through the top style in a YJ spring width and 2 leafs high. Any one know where I could find those?
Aren't those usually riveted into the leaf? I had two sets riveted in some Cherokee springs at Delmarva Springs. Delmarva went out of business years ago. I bet Spring Menders off Raby Rd. in Norfolk could do this for you as well.
Last Edit: Jun 27, 2009 21:40:29 GMT -5 by jeeepxj
Could you post some pics up of the sign top installed? As I said in your "wanted" ad, I've been thinking of doing something similar and would like to see how you went about and what the results were. How do you like it so far? Thanks!