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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I picked this up from a guy who inherited it from his father in law and tore it all apart with the plan of restoring it. Obviously that didn't happen and it sat in pieces in his shop for a decade.



This is the condition it came home in.




I've made a lot of progress...



Here's my plan...

Engine: Ford 3.8 out of a mustang
Trans: T-90,T18 or a C4...
Trasnfer case: Dana 18
Front axle: NT Dana 30
Rear axle: offset dana 44 from a 70's CJ
Suspension: rear 2.5" lift springs all the way around pushing the front axle forward.
Tires: 35's and body trimmed as needed with rear axle moved back slightly but no comp-cut.


Picking up the axles and springs tomorrow as well as some wheels with dry rotted 33's to get me started. Hopefully my rate of progress is faster than the guy I bought it from. Aside from a body lift on a YJ and an engine replacement on a 'Yota pickup this is my first build project so I really have no idea what to expect.

I'm slightly concerned it'll be narrow and top heavy with the 35's and NT axles so toying with the idea of spacers or 60"wms axles.
 

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1958 Willys CJ-3B "Pile'o'parts"

I've been running an 1989 Mitsubishi version of the CJ3B on 37s with about 8" of wheelbase stretch while SOA, no sway bars, just shocks and leafs. A nice set of wide wheels (~10") will help out a lot. I'm not that top heavy but I do have some body roll due to removed leafs from the pack. Even with being SOA without a stretch and on 35s you'll still be pretty stable on and off road.




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Discussion Starter #3
Ok cool, I'll be SUA with about 5" of wheelbase stretch so should be fine.
 

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1958 Willys CJ-3B "Pile'o'parts"

The wheel base stretch will make you feel a lot more stable. It did for me at least. Part of me wishes I would've stayed SUA when I did my frame swap. It's a different vehicle than it used to be.

EDIT: damn autocorrect...

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It was great meeting you today. It was nice talking jeeps with you too. It seems like you've got a good plan of attack and hopefully the parts you bought today are enough to make some quick progress. I hope the rest of your trip got you some good parts. You've got my number, so if you need some help just give me a call.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Yea it was great meeting and talking shop with a fellow jeep nut. Saturday was very successful as far as gathering parts and will be picking up a welder this week so I can get to work.

Mounting the rear lift springs up front is going to require lengthening the front of the frame and I'm planning on boxing the rest of the stock frame. However, I was looking at it last night and now I'm thinking it would be easier and faster to build a frame from scratch. I have access to a water jet at work so getting Meiser style side plates would be relatively easy.

If you give a mouse a cookie...lol...
 

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However, I was looking at it last night and now I'm thinking it would be easier and faster to build a frame from scratch. I have access to a water jet at work so getting Meiser style side plates would be relatively easy.
Coming from recent experience, build a new frame. Between all of the weak points, all of the tweaking and twisting of the old frame, and the problems trying to square up new hangers.....forget about trying to stay with the old frame and build one.
Since last October I boxed my old frame and strengthened it in other ways, extended it, added new bumpers, etc....and way too much time involved in it and had a heck of a time trying to get thing square for new leaf spring mounts. (Still not perfect). I couldn't justify the extra expense at the time for the frame material to build new, but it would have been worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yea after talking to Mieser and rereading his build thread that's my plan.
 

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Looks like a great starting off point! I also recommend going with building a frame vs re-using the other one. I could have saved a lot of time and money starting with new!
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
OK so plans have changed slightly.

New engine/trans:
I bought a c4 to use and it came with a running 302 attached to it. The price was right and the urge to go v8 has been strong since the beginning.

This means the D30 I was planning on running up front probably wont last very long so I'm picking up a passenger drop D44 out of a 77 NT Waggy saturday.

Frame:
Copied the Rango frame with a 4" stretch in the belly plus 4" in the back section to account for using early cj5 springs which are 4" longer than willys rear springs so the wheelbase will end up being around 91". There is the provision to stretch the front hood/fenders 2" should the engine not fit after highlining the front fenders and moving the grill forward. Also, I figured out a way to easily use the frame plates for springs under the frame or out boarded to waggy width. Lastly, I'm going to build a low profile bumper like beanoil did on his Low Slung MB on M37 axles to avoid some of the rear shackle issues Meiser had.

Tires:
I figure since I'm getting a v8 and D44's I can safely run 36-37s :evil:


Decision time:
1: Narrow the front waggy to keep the springs under the frame or keep full width and outboard them? If I go outboard I'll probably need bumpstops to keep the pumpkin from hitting the frame but the extra width would be good for stability and not having to buy custom shafts should I break one.

2: Keep the D18 and pick up an offset rear full width D44 or swap to a D300 and pick up a 9/8.8/44 for the rear? The benefit of the D18 over the D300 is I already have it. However, the C4 to D300/atlas adapter is 2" long versus to 5" of the c4 to D18 adapter. Cost of a D300 around here is about $250 so not a huge deal and lurch9 has offered an empty D300 case to use for mockup so easy to make progress. Is there a benefit to having an offset rear axle?


Thanks


Also, the frame plates should be getting added to the production schedule here at work in the next week or two so will finally be able to start building.
 

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Discussion Starter #14


The frame plates and 5' of the 40' of 2x4x.120 I ordered showed up at work yesterday. Hopefully the other 35' will show up next week and can get to work.
 

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Discussion Starter #16 (Edited)


This looked a lot easier on the internet...


Finally had some time to get some work done and made a little bit of progress but not much. Looks like I'll have some more time this weekend. Hopefully I can get both rails welded up.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)








Slowly making progress on my frame. Even with both rails clamped together I'm fighting things moving around. Seems like every time I lay a weld down it moves. The game between the ends isn't huge when the center section is clamped but it's still there. Also, using .030 flux wire in a Lincoln ProMig 140 at the moment. Planning on picking up a tank of gas soon.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I'm thinking that it'll be fine and I'll use the front and rear cross-members to pull them back in the 1/8" the ends are off.
 

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Neat to see someone using my ideas again!

Things will move with welding, just keep it in mind as you build. You will be able to pull things around as you add crossmembers also.
 
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