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Discussion Starter #1
Not new to pirate, but have not been here in a long time, forgot the password to my old account so I’m starting out fresh.

Took a break for a while but found myself a new project a few years back which is now almost complete, once I figure out how I’ll post pictures.

I brought a half finished project from a fellow club member 5 years ago and have slowly been redoing most of the work and trying to finish the job. It is a 1952 Ford built M38CDN (Willys M38 assembled by Ford in Canada)

It’s not stock, I wouldn’t be here if it was. It’s powered by a 1989 GM 4.3 TBI V6, a Munchie 465 gearbox, Dana 300 transfercase, D45 in the rear and D35 up front both locked, running lifted YJ springs, power Disk brakes up front drums in the rear and power steering. Running 33” super swamper TSLs on 15” pro comp Steelies. Roll cage etc! It’s pretty much a life size version of the Wild Willys RC Jeep from Tamiya. :smokin:

Wasn’t sure where to post first, so I jumped right in, will post pictures as soon as I figure out how.

Mike B
 

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Discussion Starter #5
It’s come along way in the past few years, sadly I ran over my phone that had most of the before pictures, but like most old Willys projects it started out life by being winched out of a backyard, had to evict several families or vermin, mostly squirrels 😎
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Ok, finally i have time to give a little background on this project.

After finishing and selling my last project I found myself with to much free time so I brought a half finished project of a fellow club member which had been sitting outside for 10+ years we had to winch it out of his back yard with his LJ and trailered it out to my shop to begin rebuilding it, I've have a few older vehicles in the past 46 ford 1 Ton, 58' Triumph, 64' Sport Fury and a bunch of 70's stuff, I like the older stuff. Well that was 5 years ago.

Over the past 5 years I have gone over about 90% of the jeep replacing, rebuilding and getting everything to work, and making it my own. Most of the rebuild pictures were lost when my phone decided to slip under a tire while i was backing out one day, and no i didn't have it backed up to the cloud. So you don't get a lot of the before or during pictures.

rebuilt front a rear axles, dana 44 in the rear and 30 up front, both with Detroit lockers and CM shafts with new MM hubs all turning 33" Bias Ply super swamper TSL's and 15" Pro-comp black steel rims. Front disk brakes are from a CJ7 rear drums from an IH Scout MC is from the CJ and clutch MC and slave are from Lotus Elise I had lying around left over from a old build, D300 T-case with twin sticks and sm465 gear box all tied into a 4.3 TBI V6 from a 89' GM pickup.

Springs were swapped out to new lifted pro-comp YJ srings and shocks, new poly bushings all around with some modified rear YJ shock extension brackets to help in the rear.

I went with rugged ridge seats, trimmed the bottom foam cushion down my 4 inches to help with the head room as my head was sticking out over the wind screen, sucks at -30c.

Did a basic roll cage tied into the tub, I plan on tying it into the frame this winter, 3" lap belts, ill change those out to a 4 point system in the future.

Relocated the battery to the rear behind the passenger seat along with the 2 gallon air tank for the OBA, the compressor is located in the engine bay where the battery used to be. Running a superwinch 8K winch on a custom winch plate

Built a basic tire carrier for the spare and a single fuel can, would like to add some more fuel storage later as well.

Slowly a panel at a time I stripped and repainted the tub, went with a kaki with black trim theme, still got some blue from the PO in the rear and in not quite done yet.

Now the motor is what is giving be the most grief, was rebuilt in the 90's and has less than 3000 miles on it since, but has had a lot of time sitting, it drives great but is not perfect. like mentioned above the motor is a 4.3 V6 with TBI from a 89' pick up. the Radiator is the re-cored stock rad with a electric fan and high flow water pump and so far no over heating issues, in fact it runs cool.

I have rebuilt the TBI and most of the electrical harness, she starts and idles fine, does on an inconsistent basis throw a trouble code,code 44 and 45both at the same time, exhaust lean and rich codes. with the occasional back fire (afterfire) thru the exhaust when shifting up while accelerating hard.

I think these issues are either a leak in the exhaust manifold before and or after the O2 sensor, and bad pick up coil in the dizzy, bad and leaky EGR valve, valves need adjusting or a flat spot on the Cam, really hoping it's not the later.

As well as the motor gremlins I have a few other loose ends to do before I am confident enough to take it out for some serious offroading. Namely doing something about the IH drum brakes in the rear and something better than a lap belt, and get the gas tank from under my arse, never thought sitting on gas was the safest thing to do.

Cheers, thanks for reading.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Since I’m waiting for bearings to arrive ( everything is closed for a holiday this weekend) And I had a free Sunday I decided to attempt making a pair of steel half doors for my M38.

Kept it simple, using 3/4” square tube and some piano hinges, made a template of the door opening out of cardboard which I will use later to make door skins out of some 11 ga sheet metal. Using the template I built a frame that fit inside the door opening, using some existing holes in the tub to mount the door and I will fab up a latch once I have the door skinned. I will make the door skin bigger than the opening by about 1” so I get some sort of seal.

So far I’m into the half door project for $30 in material and such and 4 hours of my time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
The half door project will have to wait till next weekend to be finished, ran out of shielding gas for the welder half way they skinning the first door. And since I have some cold crisp beverages in the fridge I decided not to drive the 2 hours to go get a new cylinder.

But I did get one door mounted and mostly finished, next week I’ll finished the second door and mount latches then paint, going to put some map pockets on the inside and you can never have enough storage in a flatty.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Half Doors

Finished up this little side project, took about 10 hours spread over 3 weekends and the cost was under $100 including materials, paint, shop supplies and hardware. Used bed liner to coat the inside and rattle can paint to match the tub on the out.

I’m liking the look of them and they are easy to get in and out of the Jeep with them on. Now with that little project finished I can replace the rear wheel bearing and get back on the road before it snows .
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Trying to keep the Willys street legal and a decent off-road rig can be a balance, one challenge is adequate tire coverage in the form of fenders that won’t interfere off-road and won’t give the local law inforcment a reason to ticket you while driving to the trail head.

Answer removable fenders. And this is my attempt.

I like the look of the dully farm Jeep fenders from the 50’s and wanted to go that route.

On a stock M38 or early CJ tub the rear wheel arch has a 16” radius and a simple 32” trailer fender will slide right in, back in the day I was told they used surplus M100 trailer fenders. Then fab up a bracket or two and you can make them removable.

Leave the fenders in place for daily driving, drive to the trail head, remove a few bolts remove the fenders and your good to go.

Since the previous owner cut up the tub on my M38 and the rear fender arches were nit stock, they had a 16” radius for the fro t half and a 19” for the rear half, so I got creative.

I used 36” trailer fenders, faked up some brackets, then modified the wheel arch to match the radius of the fender.

Some pictures. The first one is the look I am going for.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
As you can see the fenders leave a gap, so I welded up a new inner arch using the fender as a template, sadly I had to use some bondo, tried my best not to but alas it’s use was inevitable.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Finished the removable fender extensions. Decided to go with black. Now I can drive around and not get a ticket for inadequate tire coverage, and remove the fenders when playing in the mud.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Tire carrier, inside tub.

While I have a made a swing out tire carrier a few years ago, I was never happy with it, it look odd on the back end of the Willys and added an extra foot and a half to its overall length. Plus I’m getting on in years and hoisting that 80lbs wheel tire Combe up the chest height is becoming a pain the arse.

So I can up with something that will allow easy access to the spare, and not require hoisting the wheel 5 feet in the air, and leave the back of the Willys looking flush. It required moving the spare inside the tub and creating a tire carrier that fit on the inside of the stock tail gate.

The stock tail gate on the M38 from what I have figured out could handle a spare tire on steel rim and a full 20 gal jerry can, weight of both is 84 lbs, and it was hanging on the outside.

My mount and tire combo is 86 lbs and hangs on the inside and the tire rests on the floor, with the mount spreading the weight across the tail gate.

Using 1” square tube with 3/16” walls and some plate I made the frame and welded to the tail gate at the bracing points for the stock tire carrier and jerry can and at the hinges.

When installed the tire sits on the inside of the tub, when needed i unbolt the tail gate and lower, the spare is now closer to the ground at knee height and more manageable.

Not 100% complete but it’s getting there. I will latches and limit straps for the tail gate later.
 

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Nice! always tough to figure out what to do with a spare. Nice to have it tucked in tight instead of hanging way out the back. Your rig is looking great!
 

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I dig the fender extensions, may steal that idea...

Tire carrier is nice too. How's it affect the visibility?
 
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