Daily Driver build

Doc Savage

Basic User
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#1
Picked up an 83 Scrambler for the wife in 2005. Here's what it looked like then:





We never really did much work on it. Did swap to smaller tires as it didn't seem to have power and fixed the exhaust. We pretty much just drive it. Mainly around town and working in the yard. Fast forward and this is what it looks like now.



Paint is faded and the Master Cylinder seems to be leaking out the lid. Was needing new tires too.

Well this is my year to get a new vehicle and after issues with my LJ and NOT liking the JKs I decided to make a CJ my daily driver (I'll still have my 98 TJ SE setup as a trail rig for fun). I looked around and after talking with the wife she offered up the Scrambler (well I did suggest the possibility). So we set a price for the work and I set about deciding what needed to be done. Key thoughts are that I want to keep this fairly stock, but this will not be a factory restoration, it will be a very used jeep. I will occasionally take it offroad, but nothing hard core. I need to be able to take it on the highway and even an occasional long road trip. I will also be towing a M416 trailer with it on occasion. Some of my current plans are:

Regear (picked up NT axles with 3.54 gears to swap in)
Swap in T5 (currently have T176 4 speed, yea I know most like the strength of the T176, but I feel the need for overdrive)
Patch Rust spots (not too bad, see next post)
Paint
New Tires
Add Air Conditioning
Replace heater core/fan upgrade
Rebuild motor
Replace Master cylinder
Upgrade interior
Add Softtop
 

Doc Savage

Basic User
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#2
I took a real close look at the Scrambler while making the plan for the rebuild. Found it had more rust than I expected, but all in all not too bad. The good thing is that my brother's neighbor is a professional welder who is a family friend so getting it fixed shouldn't be a major issue.

Body mounts were rough and need replacing, but one body mount channel was rusted out.




This next one was a suprise. the floor rusted out underneath the floor liner in the cab.



I've really gotten to despise bedliner. The bed and cab were lined with spray in liner. I understand that prep is key to the application but this went beyond application. I can tell from the pattern it was sprayed in and it was thick. I found it bubbling in the rear and pulled it up and found this.



When I took the liner I pealed off and held it up to the sky you could see what looked like pin holes all through the liner.
 

Doc Savage

Basic User
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#4
Have set the date for the start of the rebuild. I'll be taking it up to my brother's on the 15th. Plan to pull everything apart and start repairs, cleanup and then painting. Will be installing gears and working on rebuilds after that then start bolting it all back together. I'll be posting up as progress is made.

Oh, as this will be my jeep now, I will be removing a couple of stickers ;)


and
 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#6
IT FINALLY GOT STARTED!

Well took the Scrambler up to my brother's Friday to get the rebuild started. Spent most of the day Sat. taking parts off. Had hoped to have a couple of helpers, but ended up just being me and my brother (and he's in a wheel chair). Still got a fair amount done. Did have to drill out two tailgate bolts, one seatbelt bolt, and one bolt on the windshield hinge. Had to quit early as this was our first family visit for awhile and everyone came over for dinner.

The drive up was interesting. About 250 miles in the Scrambler with the back end full with the parts axles, transmission, and springs. Was also towing the M416 as I will be adding a tailgate from a CJ-2a to it. The wife followed in the van with the junkyard seats and all the boxes of parts I've been ordering. It was quite a haul. That's the most the Scrambler has been loaded down with and it showed it had 2.73 gears. Averaged 65 mph, but was down to 50 on a couple of hills on the interstate.

Here we are as I pulled in:


Here the Scrambler is in the shop before we started:


All the parts stacked up:


Beginning to get on a roll:


I was worried the windshield frame was rusting under the cowl gasket, but when I pealed the gasket off, turns out the PO had tried to seal the seal against he frame with black RTV or something like that. Looked good after pealing the gasket off. The gasket even looks fairly new, except the part exposed outside.


It looks like I got to this just in time. Under most of the hinges was pretty rusty, I think the PO didn't pull any of the hinges or anything when they painted it last.


Got the swing away and tailgate off:


I think I know why the defroster wasn't clearing the windows:


Got the steering column out fairly easily and pealed more of the liner in the cab as well as getting seatbelts out and seats out. Got the console out also.


Got the bolts out of one of the roll bar pads. Tried to do the other one on the back and didn't want to come out (been spraying the bolts with PB blaster for the past couple of months). Put some more blaster on the under side of the bolts and letting it soak. Used a cheater bar and it looked like the torx bit was starting to twist but the bolt wasn't moving. I will not be reusing torx bolts anywhere if I can help it. Normal bolts that you can get some bite on.
 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#7
And this is what she looked like when we got through:


Unfortunately it will be 2 weeks before I get back. My brother plans to do some work on the parts we pull blasting them and priming them. Don't know if he will be trying to do much more until we get more disassembled.
 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#8
Well didn't sleep well this weekend. Woke up about 2 hours before my alarm to get ready to go, so I just got dressed and went down to work on the jeep a little before we left. Did alot of cleaning up and moving parts. Took the seat risers off the seats. Then tried to pull the rest of the liner off the cab area. Got most of it all off, just a few corner areas that need a little work. Got to get a chance to look at the floors real good. Both sides had been patched in the past. Driver's side is complete rust, but the passenger side wasn't too bad. I'm just not sure about their patch jobs. Nothing was painted and it looks like the replacement piece was just attached with seam sealer. We'll have to be checking this out closer.

Got back home and ready to crash. I can barely keep my eyes open. a 5hr drive can be a killer when you work all weekend.



 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#11
Still getting caught up from the weekend trip up to work on the jeep. That 5 hour drive up and back is starting to get old. Got a fair amount done.

Started out removing the roll bar. Pulled the bulkhead to access the front bolts better. My brother had gotten all but one of the rear pad bolts out. Had to cut the torx bolt down to a square to get a wrench on it to get it to turn. What I want to know is what idiot designed the bends in the roll bar?? It bends out and over the top of one of the bolts so you can’t get a socket with a torx bit on it in straight. Ended up cutting and chisling the tops of 3 bolts off of the front pads. Hopefully I’ll be able to weld a nut on the remainder of the bolt and get it out now that the roll bar isn’t in the way. No way I plan ever use a torx bit on this jeep again. I HATE them.



Not sure what this is:




It appears to be a bulkhead connector for a hose that runs under the bed from one front corner to the other front corner. No clue what it could be for. Looks like the ends are full of crud, so not sure if there is anything in it or not.

I took the dash out next. Took time to label all the wires what they were connected to so I wouldn’t get anything mixed up. Did make one mistake though. Looked like the bulbs twisted off of the speedo…. Oops they are bayonets and pull out. Broke one of the turn signals sockets. Guess I’ll be replacing that one now, found the part number from NAPA for a replacement. Wondering about doing an LED conversion for the lights on the dash. Would love to do it, just not sure if I want to spend the time and spend the extra money (well they aren’t that much, but the budget is a little tight).



Next we got the heater/defroster out of the jeep. Lots of pine needles in the cowl vent and ducts. I’m not sure if the lower vent is stock or homemade. Looks a little odd.





Took the grille and fenders off next. I have to wonder what engineer decided to put an electronics box under a liquid reservoir (and I’m an engineer). Those two things just don’t seem to go together. Oh well, I’ll be relocating the electronic iginition box anyway. It didn’t look too bad, but I’m considering getting a new one anyway. Looks like the radiator had been repaired as some point. It also appears to be missing a core. It isn’t as thick as the sides



Took the fender flares off the front fenders. PO did a number on this one also. Somehow I don't think 1/4" bolts were factory. About half were close enough to the lip, the heads wouldn't spin so you just needed one wrench. The other half needed a wrench on both sides.



My brother had us head out to his church for “burgers and hot dogs” at a block party they were having. Well it was a bit more than burgers and dogs. I almost ate too much.

 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#12
After we got back, we headed back out and started taking the motor parts off. We ended up getting alternator, power steering, distributer, carb, and manifolds off. Don’t think I have a picture of it, but the PCV valve connection to the carb was definitely not stock. The PO used an air fitting on the carb for a hose barb. Nope I’m not worried at all. Pulled the valve cover. Everything looked good, but I can see why these things leak so much. You could tell right where oil had been seep out under the gasket… on the driver’s side where they use the washer/nut on the head bolts to clamp the cover down, and they were torqued down super tight. We took the head bolts off and got a look at the valves and pistons. Didn’t look too bad, but the head gasket didn’t seem to be holding to the head or block very well, almost like the head wasn’t on tight enough. Didn’t look like it had been leaking though. Two of the exhaust valves looked like they may not have been seating very well. The pistons look like they were standard diameter.. yea! Pretty sure it will need to be bored out, just not sure how much. There is a very distinct lip from ring wear. Lots of carbon buildup at the tops of the cylinders, but the bores all look good and smooth. Motor will definitely need a full rebuild.







Here is what it looked like when we called it a day at 12:30am. We were too tired to even clean up the tools. We just left it all and cleaned up Sunday before I headed out. Got everything moved out to his trailer. Not a bad pile of parts for a short weekend of work.




Can’t wait to get back to it. If it wasn’t for this pesky thing called a job, this could go a lot faster. Well now to wait a couple more weeks to get started again.
 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#13
Did have one casuality on the weekend. Pinched my hand between the ratchet and body when I slipped off one of the fender bolts. OWWWWWWW!



This is the driver's fender. It was starting to get a gap between the cowl and the bottom of the fender. I can see why now. The tow bottom bolts were simply screwed into the firewall. The mating surface on the fender were missing.

 

MrBeep

CJ-8 Vendor Supporter
SOA Member
CJ-8.com Vendor
City
Dillsboro
State
IN
#16
Have you thought about using a complete heat/defrost/ac unit such as VintageAir? I use them for the advantage of dehumidified defrost and it was actually less expensive than replacing / repairing / adding the inefficient factory AC unit.
 

Chipster1990

Scrambler Junkie
LIFETIME
CJ-8.com Member
City
Birmingham
State
AL
#17
Have you thought about using a complete heat/defrost/ac unit such as VintageAir? I use them for the advantage of dehumidified defrost and it was actually less expensive than replacing / repairing / adding the inefficient factory AC unit.
Do they make a model specific to the CJ?




 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#18
Talked to my brother on the phone today. He got industrious today, must be the good weather ;)

He pulled the brake booster/master cylinder off as well as got the wiring harness/fuse box out along with the peddles. He also got the head torn down. He hopes to get the tub off before I get back up there and let me do the sandblasting (he thinks I should experience the sand gets everywhere syndrome, there's a reason I don't do the beach). Got to finish designing the changes to the ammo box for the console. The welder has some free time this week and was thinking about tackling that.

Robert
 
City
Huntsville
State
AL
#19
Have you thought about using a complete heat/defrost/ac unit such as VintageAir? I use them for the advantage of dehumidified defrost and it was actually less expensive than replacing / repairing / adding the inefficient factory AC unit.
Had heard of them, but wasn't sure about replacing the stock setup. I didn't see a Scrambler version, but just heard of folks using them. I do have a new heater core to replace the leaking one that was in there. I also plan to do the Blazer fan upgrade. I've already gotten the JeepAir underdash setup to get installed. Hadn't really thought about it not having dehumidified defrost. Hope that isn't much of an issue. Very seldom use AC here, but do use the defrost from time to time... Hummm. Might be one regret to the way I'm doing things.

Robert
 

MrBeep

CJ-8 Vendor Supporter
SOA Member
CJ-8.com Vendor
City
Dillsboro
State
IN
#20
They are universal kits for street rods and such. I'll try and get you some pictures of my set ups tomorrow evening. Can't figure out this new Mac and pictures yet, have to go to the old PC. :wave:
 
Top