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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello all. I’ve been on Pirate for a while, but haven’t posted much. I know enough to keep my mouth shut when I don’t know what the hell I am talking about, and not to ask questions that can be easily answered by doing a quick search. I wasnt sure if I should put this in the hardcore section or not, cus Im a newbie and my skilz suck ass. But it is not everyday you see 40 year old jeeps cut in half. :flipoff2:

About me and my build…

33, married 10 years to my hot as hell wife (you can ask all you like but no TOGTFO), 4 kids (ages 11, 8, 4, and almost 2) and a 6 year old boxer. I had a 99 TJ that I bought new, put a lift and 35’s on, took to Moab a bunch of times, and kept till my family outgrew it.

I went a year without a jeep, and got the itch to get another one. I found a ’69 Jeepster Commando that was completely rusted out for $800 (which was way too much) and decided it would be a good project.

Fast forward a few years and a few kids later, the Jeepster project has only been taken apart, nothing seems to be going back together. I was getting discouraged, and found another one for sale, that was 95% complete. The guy building it was in the mortgage business and needed some money quick. I picked it up for a good deal, finished it up and started enjoying my hobby. We went to Silverton CO last summer with the Jeepster Commando Club of America and had a blast.

Last year, I found a bone stock ’70 Jeepster convertible that had no rust on it, other that a bit of surface rust. I couldn’t pass it up, so I picked it up and added it to the collection.


Here is a link to my build on the JCCA with lots more detail of getting to where I am now. If anyone needs Jeepster questions answered, here is a virtually flame free site. There are a lot of great guys on this site.
http://jeepstercommandoclub.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=8732


My plan for this build is to make a 4 door duh! Main reason is to be able to fit my whole family in one Jeepster.

SBC 305/700r4/np241 with future plans of 383 stroker or a 5.3 vortec.
Waggy D44 front with Chevy spindles, Ford hubs and rotors, aprox 60 inches WMS to WMS, open carrier, 4.11 or 4.56 gears.
Scout D44 rear aprox 60 inches WMS to WMS, lock rite locker, 4.11 or 4.56 gears.
SOA lift with stock springs for now.
35 inch MTR's.

Why not just run the whole thing on a chevy frame? axles too wide and too heavy for mostly road use, some wheeling. And because I already have all the stuff to put this be-yatch together.

Ok, enough blah blah blahing… On to the pics…

Here are my 2 Jeepster that work.



Here is a photo shopped look at my 4 door



This is where I started on Saturday...


Here is how you move a tub by yourself... well half of a tub...


I put this on some HF (harbor freight) furniture rollers... easier to move...


I decided to try and keep the overall length down by bobbing the bed. I started with the body, and will build the frame to match. Snapped a couple of chalk lines...
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
I lined up a piece of scrap, not that it did any good. My cuts looked straight, but really weren't all that great...






Then I clamped it in place...



Tacked and ready for paint


I know it looks like poop, but that big hole was actually a bolt hole before I started. Some of the burn throughs I will take credit for...
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I took a break, had a cold beverage, and enjoyed the view out of my shop window... I know the sign is spelled wrong, but my wife bought it for me a few years ago, and she tried her best









Here is the aprox door opening I am going for. I will clean up the backs of these and do some more fitting. I ran out of cutting disks and sawzall blades.

 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Pretty cool! So what wil the frame be like? Also plenty of space for a doubler :D
The plan is to cut the stock frame in front of the rear wheels, just behind the rear doors, and run 2x4's or 2x5's 3/16 the rest of the way back. I would like to do a 4 link, but to keep it simple i might just do some YJ springs. The front part of the frame has been heavily reinforced, with a shackle reverse, stinger bumper and heavy winch plate.
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
So this weekends progress isnt all that impressive by way of pictures, but I think I made some progress.

I used some 16 gauge 2x4s to brace the door striker/hinges. then cleaned up my edges and tacked it in place. I left the bottom of the tube long so that I can attach it to my rock sliders, which will be thick wall 2x4's.



I love tearing apart these 40 year old jeeps, it is almost like archeology. you can see by the spot welds that this was hand welded. If it were machine welded the spot welds would be evenly spaced and in a straight line.



Here is the front and back sections tacked together. i am trying to keep things in line with a string, but things arent lining up as well as I would like. in the last picture it is just sitting on blocks, so the middle is sagging. At this point you can start to see what a 4 door jeepster might look like! :D

 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
My bad - they just called it the '101' down there. No 'C' (apparently my memory is a little rusty, much like my trucks).


That is pretty cool! I havent ever heard of one before, and I thought I knew a thing or two about old jeeps!

is that the same jeep in both pics? one side has 2 doors and the other 1 door? so technically it is a 3 door?
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Thanks guys....

I am at the point where attention to the details will really matter. lining things up, getting things straight and tacked together. guess I will put down the natty light and pick up the tape measure.

it really sucks trying to do this on cinder blocks! I need to gather up 8 scissor or bottle jacks and make them mobile so i can get it just right. I have been using a floor jack and an engine hoist to try and level things out, and there is just too much movement.

I could cut some 1" square tube to the same length and tack them to the body mounts that are the same height, and figure out the others... that is assuming the floor mounts are all the same and have not bent or become distorted on a 40 year old tub. And assuming my garage floor is flat and level, which I know it is not...

I'll figure something out, but in the mean time I am open to any been there done that suggestions, as long as you keep in mind my cheapness...
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
This weekends progress...

I ground down some of my booger welds.


I used a few jack stands, some cinder block and my floor jack to get it pretty level. Tacked the 2 tubs and together. Then fully welded one side, but not the other... ran out of time.

not much to see, so no pics, but it definitely felt like progress.
 

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Premium Member
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498 Posts
i am not sure what size wire you are using to weld the sheet metal but i do alot of sheet metal welding on body panels and use 023 it works alot better than heavier wire. Just a tip build looks great i am not knocking it a bit.
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
i am not sure what size wire you are using to weld the sheet metal but i do alot of sheet metal welding on body panels and use 023 it works alot better than heavier wire. Just a tip build looks great i am not knocking it a bit.
I am using 035. I know it is thick, but I am trying to go slow, keep it cool. I would like to get a spool of 023, but 035 is what I have, and I am cheap. ill probably spend more in grinding discs using 035, than i would just getting the 023!

no knock taken. i'll take all the advice i can get. unfortunately, i dont always take that advice, and have to learn the hard way :).
 

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Wow that back door is small, I have a hard time getting in and out on the trail without the door jamb ripping open my side.

I liked your photo shop with the same size doors front and rear, then you wouldnt have to FAB any doors or the jamb.... too late now you already cut it up.


Isnt this the work you did a year or two ago or are you back on this project?
 

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Learning by Mistakes
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1,501 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Wow that back door is small, I have a hard time getting in and out on the trail without the door jamb ripping open my side.

I liked your photo shop with the same size doors front and rear, then you wouldnt have to FAB any doors or the jamb.... too late now you already cut it up.


Isnt this the work you did a year or two ago or are you back on this project?

I actually wish the front doors werent so damn long! I know they made them that way so it would be easier to get into the back seat, but sheesh! I dont plan on trimming the front doors down.

The overall length would be way to long if I kept the rear doors the same and unnecessary. I was debating the rear door openings for a while... i ended up going with about 24 inches at the narrowest point. The way I came up with it is by clamping it in place, and having my 8 year old climb in and out of it. It will obviously be a lot smaller for a grown ass man to climb in and out of, but I climbed in without scraping by belly.

My goal is to keep this a short as possible, but still have 3 rows of seats. bobbing the back, shortening the doors, and possibly removing 8 or 9 inches between the rear doors and rear wheels should keep my overall length 12 to 18 inches longer than stock.

This is the same build I started years ago on JCCA.
 
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