There are four lists below. First is a list of parts that have been used on the build. Second is a list of parts obtained for the build but not yet used. Third is a list of parts for sale. These were obtained, but not used. Fourth is a list of the parts that still need to be obtained.
PARTS USED ON THE BUILD
– 1961 Jeep Willys Tub, Fenders, Hood
– 1978? Jeepster Commando Frame
– 4″ YJ Leaf Springs with Bushings (used)
– Scout Front Dana 44 Axle (used)
– Scout Rear Dana 44 Axle (used)
– Homemade Spring Mounts for Full Width Axles and Shackle Reversal
PARTS OBTAINED FOR THE BUILD
– Remade VIN & Export Tag (Originals are still available)
– 1994 Chevy S10/Blazer 4.3L CPI Engine
– Nut Replacement for Engine
– 1994 K2500 NV4500 Transmission (used)
– Oil for NV4500 (new)
– Shifter for NV4500 (new)
– Jeep Dana 300 Transfer Case (used)
– Twin Sticks for Dana 300 (new)
– Centerforce Dual Friction Clutch (new)
– Flywheel (new)
– E2000 Fuel Pump (new)
– Novak NV4500 to Dana 300 Adapter (new)
– Slave Cylinder (new)
– Advance Adapters NV4500 Bellhousing (new)
– 1966-68? Mustang Radiator (used)
– Novak Engine Mounts (new)
– 33×12.5×15 Super Swamper Tires (with Spare) (used)
– 36″ Super Swamper Tires (for build only, not good to drive) (used)
– Black Rims
– 1″ Body Lift (new)
– TJ Fender Flares (used)
– DJ-5 Steering Column (used)
– DJ-5 Steering Box Mount (used)
– Cherokee Pedal Assembly (used)
– Cherokee Master Brake Cylinder (used)
– CJ-6 Blinkers (used)
– Right Hand Drive Cherokee Steering Box (used)
– Early CJ-5 Windshield (used)
– Early CJ-5 Donor Tub (for the floor)
– ’90s Chevy Transmission Skid Plate
– Firestick Antenna (new)
– CB (used)
– Maglite Mount for early CJ-5 Steering Column (used)
– CJ-7 Sun Visors (used)
– Antenna Mount (used)
– Bikini Top for CJ-5 (used)
– Rear Bench Seat for CJ-5 (used)
– Under Hood Toolbox (if possible)
PARTS THAT WILL BE FOR SALE – NO LONGER NEEDED
– Late CJ Gas Tank
– The original CJ-6 Frame with Axles, Boxed and Professionally Straightened
– 1976 Jeep Factory Service Manual
– Original CJ-6 Steering Column
– Original CJ-6 Pedals
PARTS THAT ARE STILL NEEDED
– New Soft Top
– Electric Fan
– Steering Wheel
– Windshield Wipers
– Fuel Lines
– Brake Lines
– Gas Tank
– Side Mirrors
– Rear View Mirror
– Wiring Harness
– New Windshield & Hood Hardware
– Tail Lights
– 4″ Old Man Emu Leaf Springs
– Swing Away Tire Carrier / Rear Bumper
– Front Bumper with Stinger?
– Better Axles with Lockers
– 37″ BF Goodrich KM2 Tires
– Roll Cage
– Rock Rails
– Work on the Body
It has been many months since I bought the Commando frame. My personal life has kept me busy and is about to get busier. But, I am now trying to work on the jeep every now and then.
Over the last year, I obtained a good Hobart Handler welder, a cheap Plasma Cutter, and will be trying to fabricate my own parts. I also bought more parts and sold my main Jeep, a 1976 CJ-6. You will see my attempts on this blog.
This past weekend, I welded up two pieces of angle iron that I cut to make into my front spring mounts. The mounts will outboard the springs and perform a shackle reversal. I still have a few more things to do to them before I weld them to the frame. But, I am ready to get this frame built so that I can start placing the drivetrain in it. Here are pictures.
The original frame was bent up. This was not noticed until after it was boxed. I brought it to a frame shop and they were able to fix it as best as they could, but I could tell that it still wasn’t back to normal. “Like a pretzel,” is what they said. This bothered me as I painted the frame and was about to install the engine mounts, but waited.
Several months later, in early 2012, I went to the Colorado Four Wheelers monthly club meeting, of which I am a member. One of the members told me of a Jeepster Commando for sale that was in pieces. He said that the frame would work for my CJ6. Skip ahead several days and researching online, I went to look at the frame and took rough measurements. It looks like it will work! The measurements appeared to be the same except for one. It was 10″ longer than my CJ-6 frame! Both jeeps had a similar wheelbase of 101″. It took several measurements before I figured out that the difference was actually behind the rear axle. Basically, I’ll have to cut off the frame 10″ at the rear.
So, I bought the frame and have brought it home.
Now it’s time to start again. I feel very good about this frame. I haven’t seen any cracks and it seems much more stout than the CJ-6.
I went back to the junkyard to attack to ’77 DJ5 again. This time, I decided to pull the brackets that supported the front bumper to the frame. I thought that they would be nice to have on my CJ6 until I get a winch and a winch plate.
I pulled the brackets (which were on both sides of the frame) and attached to the bumper. I had to pull off the manual steering box to get to the left bracket. Once I finished, I went home and quickly put them on my CJ6 for a test fitting.
Perfect. They will be great. I then looked down at the XJ power steering box that I had on the floor, pulled off the mounting bracket and tested a thought that just came to me. The mounting holes matched. This means that I can use the DJ5’s full, strong mounting bracket to mount my XJ power steering box without any fabrication at all. Ok, that’s not true. I will have to cut the front crossmember & bumper slightly to fit the steering box and install a plate between box & frame. But, that’s going to be easier than fabricating my own mount. It was an unexpected advantage to buying these brackets.
I have begun hitting the local junkyard for parts. I have never seen any Wranglers (YJs or TJs) or CJs before, but they recently picked up a ’77 DJ-5 (postal jeep). First thing I removed was the steering column, intermediate steering shaft, steering wheel, and blinker assembly that was attached. (I was only charged for the column.) The next trip netted me a battery tray and I also picked up the emergency brake pull in case it would ever come in handy. (It is not a standard CJ-5 one. This one is a lever.) I’ll be going back and picking up more from the DJ5.
I actually keep a database in my iphone for parts to look for. I still need axles, a underhood light, and many other parts. This junkyard maintains their vehicle inventory online, so I can see what they have and the row number while I’m walking around. It’s quite handy.
As my coworker was boxing the frame for me, his wife noticed that it was bent. Well, several months later, I finally brought it in to the frame shop to get fixed.
“Shaped like a banana”
“Did you drive it into a ditch?”
What could I say. The license plate on the jeep was from 1993. I guess somewhat really screwed it up at that time. It was so bad that even the tub wouldn’t bolt on. In fact, you could see the springs were not perfectly perpendicular to the axle. It was really quite bad. The frame shop did what they could. Hopefully it is good enough.
Now that I have the frame “fixed,” I can finally start the build of this rebuild.
I had some time to kill last night, so I decided to temporarily install the grill, fenders, and hood. It’s been a while since I’ve seen them on this jeep. In fact, they weren’t even attached when I bought the jeep. So, here are some pictures. I held up the windshield.
Last Saturday, I cleaned the garage enough so that I can easily work in it. I can even park my CJ5 in it at the same time. That’s going to help out sooo much more.
I have been slowly accumulating the parts. I now have a Dana 300 transfer case. I have a seal and gasket kit and twin sticks on the way, as well, for that Dana 300. I have also received the Novak Adapt NV4500 to Dana 300 adapter.
I sold the other CJ6 that I had. The buyer got a great price on it, and I have 1 less dead jeep to worry about. Part of the purchase price was a power steering box from a right hand drive Cherokee (XJ). That was one major component that was going to be different from other Willys rebuilds.
Also, on my last trip to the junkyard, I found a crossmember that I was told would work for me. I had given up my search and was about to quit when I found it sticking out of a front bumper of an S10. (That was not the vehicle it came in.)
So, in summary, I have accumulated a bunch more parts, with more to buy (clutch components, adapter, radiator, etc). First thing I need to do before the “build” is to get the frame straightened. Then assembly and modification can begin.
I just came home from the junkyard. I purchased the complete pedal assembly and master cylinders from an ’87 Jeep Cherokee. Someone told me that these would work nicely. Hopefully they will. In the end, they will probably be some of a few actual jeep parts on this Jeep.
Oh, and I will be receiving a Dana 300 soon. Bought and paid for. Once I receive it, then I’ll start ordering the adapters for it. After that, I should have the entire driveline (minus axles) complete. I will have a ’94 Chevy 4.3L Vortec CPI Engine (~194 hp), a ’94 GM NV4500 transmission (6.34 granny low with 0.74 overdrive), and a Jeep Dana 300 transfer case (twin stick). I am going to attempt to make my own twin sticks using Dana 18 sticks. They were the original sticks to this particular jeep. They will keep the retro look. If it doesn’t work out, then I’ll order a pair online.