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Polishing a (Willys) Jeepsturd


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It seems that the chod gods have smiled on yours truly. I now have a job restoring cars, the first of which is a 1950 Willys Jeepster. These were noted for their agricultural simplicity, (like driving a tractor, and not much faster than one) and the fact that they had no rufus. Or windows. Or power-anything. My mission: Wire it up. From scratch. With some factory manuals, an aftermarket wiring harness with unclear instructions, and the occasional wetware update.

That said, "No, really, they're great cars!"






"I would if I had the money" etc. This shot is from the third day. Thanks to Eddyramrod of this parish for the AS sticker...I soon realized I'd need to relocate the wiring harness. I'd also have to ID all the wires front to rear, and pick all the usable* parts out of that blue tote.  I remember that this day was also spent partly on removing the heater core/fan assembly which lives in that grey steel box on the firewall. Interestingly, the gauge cluster goes in the center. But first I gotta get it all strung up. There will be new holes in the firewall soon, for the choke/speedo cables, and the rest of the harness:






MAD SHADOW PUPPET PHOTO SKILLZ! No turn signal parts have arrived yet. So now it's a matter of getting the gauge clusterfook all strung out, and the headlights workable, if not actually working (which is better, of course.)






4DADONK, we have here the lovely* and talented* Willys Hurricane 6 cylinder engine. It's such an F-headed design I almost* wish they'd bring it back. Methinks I will need to download a few more wetware updates, in the form of a firing order first of all:






No, your eyes do not deceive you: it has but one belt. Power nothing. And an old-skool generator FTW. 6v too, for extra unobtainiumness:






Feckme, where do all these wiringz goes? Jusslookit all tha pretty colors!






Getting on with it. The gauge cluster is now wired in according to the destructions. Which means it's gotta be wrong somewhere. I'll be checking it against the wiring diagram later, to prove my hunch correct:






About a week in, starting to take form:






"If ya need parts, here's our donor car:"





My other car is a :



This is from 2008 when I was working as an alarm installer. It was the DaimlerChrysler era, and I seem to remember* the European changes to the electrical systems on these.

*mostly I remember cursing...in German. Or trying to.


Updates to follow...we now resume normal service.

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Thank youthankyou, and now for my next noombah...

Well,it's been quite a day here in St. James so far...Here's how it started:


Pics of the front suspension setup. According to teh internetz:


"Rear suspension was by conventional leaf springs, but the front featured Barney Roos' patented "Planadyne" suspension whereby both front wheels were independently sprung by a single transverse leaf spring. Road testers sometimes remarked that the Jeepster had a firmer ride than most cars."



If Mr. Clarkson thought his Bentley handled like a mattress, my guess is that this thing will handle like an armoire. But hey, I didn't design it...

I've now removed the heater box, and wired up the gauge cluster (fuck.) It's wrong, of course. Diagrams never lie. When the turn signal parts arrive I'll get crackin' on those...


The horn assembly I used as a shim to keep the heater from falling off the firewall whilst removing the nuts from the engine side. Worked a treat, that did. When I get the horn relay those will be installed, but are not a priority at the moment.




First attempt at completing the engine wiring. I had no plans to use the mechanical voltage regulator (red box there on the firewall) but needed to make sure all the wiring was correct. At this point I still wouldn't even dream of connecting the battery. Not until I've verified the circuits.


Having assembled the spark plug wires, and found cylinder #1, the rest can wait. I've just connected them any old where for the time being. The moment of truth is a long way off...




Moving ahead a few days: I've fixed* the heater box, so now it's back on the firewall. Now it's getting close to the moment of truth. If I had put my meter leads across the cables and got a low ohms reading, I would have most likely had a fireworks display. Guy Fawkes--up.

Thankfully, I didn't--I got a very high reading, which was comforting. But still...





Regulator changed, fuses installed...close to testing time...





At this point, I only want to make sure the starter circuit works, hence the coil is grounded with a spark tester on the ground strap. It wouldn't run anyway, due to lack of dead dinosaur juice. The white chingas in the battery tray is a sandbox/toaster type resistor called a Volta-drop. Which didn't work anyway, so in the bin it went. Note how rusty the coil and generator contacts are...I'll end up filing them all. But for now...





...let there be light!





Where's a bargepole when you need one?





OK, the brake lights work! Now, time to do some mopping up:





Having filed all the contacts, and tidied up the fuse holders a bit:





It now looks like this:





A closeup of the gauge cluster. Apparently there were RHD versions available. But since teh same internetz source says there were only a bit more than 19,000 of these things stamped out, they must be rarer than rocking horse shit.





Now I just need some split loom and a roll of leccy tape:








Yes, I know the left hand one is upside down. I made an executive decision to do so because I figured it would need to have a license plate, and for some reason there was no room for the placa because the bumper was too close. I'll look into it and get back to you.

Warra yer loike, I may have run afoul of certain unwritten rules. Must be a cultural difference, as the sarcasm is different over 'ere. Perhaps a bit like claiming "I can tell those are not proper keep left signs?" Oh well, the language is close enough so at least I can read 'em.

Plus it's actually right side up...innit?




Good idea, O LORD.

Those running lights are just music to my ears right now.


Meantime, I think I'll just look into why the coil has 6V on it even with the key off...man, it's hot today...


A FIRE??  'fuckyewmean FIRE?






...And here was the view from halfway home. We've had 8 fires, each 40 miles or so apart, in one day. Quite suspicious. I just happened to be less than a quarter mile from the largest one. Last I heard, most of the homes on that street were OK.


Will the Jeepsturd ever hit the road? Stay tuned!









Edited by hauserplenty
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  • 3 weeks later...

Right then, dials:




This is the view of the fire, still burning on my way to a temp job the next day:




I guess that's as green as it's gonna get; on to work now, where some bonus spottage was to be found:




A '56 Chebrole I theenk.


Moving back in time a little bit. At this stage I'm still connecting the turn signals and brake lights:




About halfway thru:




Almost ready to test:










Now I've got the radiator installed, I've verified that the coil haz sparkidge (ouch!), and that the fuel pump is duff.




Oh yeah, the throttle linkage. Mustn't forget, had to MacGyver the top bit. Spot the bogdery:




Made of unobtainium, but still needed. This fuel pump features two diaphragms:




The top diaphragm is for the vacuum-operated wipers, but the bottom one is for the fuel. As it's so weak it couldn't pull a drink through a straw, it's the last* bit needed to fire this baby up.

* I can haz hope.

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  • 3 weeks later...

At present, the Jeepsturd is...:




...well, jacked-up and waiting for parts. Of course the fuel pump was not the last bit needed, the water pump scuttled itself and has been sent out for rebuilding. Made of unobtainium, y'see.



The seats have arrived, in need of a bit of 'poulstree tho:






My view as I was installing the gear oil:




When the water pump arrives, it will be installed, as will some dead dinosaur juice and hopefully* this will be enough to start it up.


Bonus: '46 Ford Truuuck:





...with a flathead V8 mill:









a bucket seat. :mrgreen:

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  • 3 months later...

OK, it's been a while. Back to work on the Jeepsturd:

New fuel pump (almost) installed. Tested it and found it to be made of inoperadium. So I had to send it back...


While waiting for a new one, I dis-bodged the throttle linkage. I had to saw the square part off the rod it was attached to, as it was the only way to make the whole thing work*. But I didn't want the 'washers and bailing wire' approach to go sideways on the lucky* new owner somewhere down the road, so there we are:



...Ready for the next phase: seats and roof...er, side curtain support:



...as well as the radio. The procedure went like this: Source, Bodge, Install*...
...Test. WCPGW? It didn't work, that's what. Spun my wheels adding value* for nothing. Binned that whole idea, but left the wiring in place. CBA innit.






So, from this:



...to this:
...and the moment of truth draws ever nearer.




New fuel pump arrived. Installed same, result: same. So I Wollarded around a bit, then it came to me in a flash of inspiration:

So I cut off the copper fittings and replaced them with hose clamps and fuel lines so I could reverse them and wound up with fuel getting to the carburetor. Always a good sign.


...GET ON WITH IT!!...


Now, time to install the seats:



Every picture tells a story:

...don't it?**



Next, I'll need to install what we have of the "roof", which seems to be less than half but still a good start. Beginning with this part:



I'll then need to attach these parts:




...to get the car looking like this:



So turning my attention to the engine once more, now that I can haz fuel to the carburetor, will it need rebuilding?
Will it ever! Google is my friend once again. Good thing we had a NOS rebuild kit for this CARterBURETOR on hand. It looked as though it had been minted in the early 70's.





Next episode: MOMENT OF TRUTH! Stay tuned...


**Yer roite cheekybarstewartyew!

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  • 2 months later...

Carburetor installed, fuel/spark verified:






Right, I never bothered with the firing order, since at the time I assembled the spark plug wires, I still had so much to do.

Well, seems it has waited long enough. Half an hour later:



For some odd reason, I was able to resist the temptation to do my victory dance. I just had a feeling I should keep a close eye on this one, since it hadn't been started in the almost 15 years since it had been rebuilt and installed in this splendid* bit of automotive history. As you'll see, it could have been history repeating itself all over again, had I not been paying attention...


After that, I had to get the brakes sorted, as well as do several more run-ins by idling it for 30-45 minutes at a time. After adjusting the mixture screw a few times, It still started on the third or fourth chug every time. There's a distinctive sound to a 6V starter...I deleted about 20 previous clips of it not starting.


No pics.  Photobucket still got a hole in it. May add those later, may not. Case of CBA coming on. Soz, innit.


...Thanks for watching!...


Over to you in the studio, Bob...

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