I started out working on the troop seats for the deuce today since it was such a nice day (74deg!). I stripped the racks of all their wood and removed all of the hardware. Then I straightened any bent metal on the posts and seat supports. This took me about 5 hrs! Here is the link to that blog: http://duecem35a2.wordpress.com/
After I finished this, it was still nice and warm outside, so I started working on the Jeep. First I decided to get up under the Jeep and try to figure out why the parking brake was rattling. I got on the creeper and slid under. I grabbed the parking brake lever and jiggled it – it had a BUNCH of slop! This is pretty hard to imagine, since it had to be beaten together only a couple of thousand miles ago! I decided to go ahead and tear it apart for cleaning and inspection. There was a LOT of grease (gear oil and dirt actually) on these parts. I used brake cleaner and rags. Once everything was clean, I could see that the holes in the brake shoes were enlarged enough to let them move quite a bit. I paid around $75 for the pair of shoes, and the holes were worn out! I slid back under the Jeep and cleaned everything in the area up as much as possible. I reassembled the parking brake assembly and adjusted it. I had to screw the park brake handle clevis on about 1/4″ tighter to get the brake to clamp down halfway in its travel (3 clicks). I went for a test drive and she was still rattling (which was no surprise, because everything was even more loose after I cleaned all of the grease off). Then I added the anti rattle spring to the system. If you look closely at the parts manual, you will notice a spring that runs from the clevis to the skid plate. Then, if you notice the part #, it is actually the same spring as the throttle return spring. I installed a larger spring (about 5/8″ diameter and 3″ long) just because I had it.
I went for a ride and guess what – NO RATTLE! At some point I will install the correct spring (about 1/2″ diameter and 2 1/2″ long), but I guess there is no hurry since this one is working.
Since I had a little more daylight left, I went ahead and scuffed down my new front leaf springs and shot them with a coat of OD24087. Maybe the next time I’m off I’ll install them.
I have another pair of NOS front springs if anyone wants them – I will sell or trade for a pair of NOS rears.
Well, it was kindof bitter sweet, but I sold the red parts Jeep and most of my spare parts today. She moved on to another restorer this morning to Savannah, GA.
I ran around early this morning getting the title signed then went to the DMV. Everything was going pretty quick when the lady said “the title is not in the system!” Oh crap, I thought – the guys are 30 minutes away to pick it up and she can’t find the title in the system! She had to fax the original to the main DMV office and wait. And wait, and WAIT. An hour later, she said that they had to rebuild the title in the database before they could issue a title in my name. An hour after I got there and $50 lighter in the wallet, I left with a new title!
By the time I got back to the house, they were there. They had already loaded the spare parts and put a spare tire on to replace the busted one. We looked at my Jeep and talked shop for a few minutes, then went back up and loaded up the Jeep on their trailer. We talked a little more, exchanged cash and title, and they were on their way.
They said that they might just rebuild that one since it really only needs a rear panel and a couple of floor panels or patches in the floor and sump.
I still have the M100 trailer chassis and fenders for sale – $500. I can email pictures if interested. I also have a 1954 Farmall Cub – $3,000 obo – restored about 8 yrs ago (I think) and only been out of the shop twice in that time.
Well I didn’t get any replies about the retaining chain kits, so I decided to just go ahead and make my own. I bought a wire bending jig at Hobby Lobby for $12 (after my wife’s discount) to help bend the shackle clips. I used bailing wire to make them, and heated (tempered) them to retain some “spring” tension. I spent a total of $16.50 including the jig to make my chain set!
I found some 1/0 plumber’s chain at a local (old school) hardware store. The 1/0 is still a little larger that the factory chain, but it beats ordering it. I paid $1.50/ft and bought 3 ‘ of it. I was able to make 6 chains with 10 links each, or 7 chains with 9 links and 1 with 10 links.
I made my own ring type retainer clips (still don’t know what the real name is) using a 1/2″ diameter wd-40 pen, wrapping by hand. After wrapping it, you have to tighten it up with pliers, then heat it with a torch to dark blue to get a little spring tension back into it. I used bailing wire, but apparently it is not high carbon wire, because it never did get real “springy”. Music wire would be a better choice, but I used what I had on hand.
I also made my own seat pivot pins out of 6d finish nails, and top bow support rod “s” clips out of bailing wire. I heated each up to blue hot to temper them a little without annealing them. Let them cool slowly – don’t dip them in water or oil.
I couldn’t find anyone locally that stocks “u drive screws” to attach the chains to the shackle brackets and the top bow support rods. I was able to solve the support rod problem by making a couple of clamps that secure with small screws and nuts and have a hole drilled for the retaining clip. I will replace these when I get my order of u drive screws. I just hate to have to buy 100 screws to just use 4 (my back shackles still have chains attached). I might just improvise on that since the support rod clamps look ok.
I pulled a front tire off my Jeep and held one of my new springs up to compare – everything looks good! There is also a good bit more arch, so until the springs settle in the front of the Jeep, it will probably sit higher than the back. With weight on the front, the current springs are almost flat!
I ordered some new bushings off of ebay last night because the rubber is cracked in the new springs. I went ahead and pressed the old bushings out.
Here is a pic of the other 2 springs that I will be selling soon – a little surface rust and the bushings will need replacing. They are the early type with the beveled leaves. Notice the old canvas toe tag (nothing left to read on it, but it is still there).
I ran across these springs on Craigslist last week. I contacted the guy and he didn’t know what they fit. He gave me the measurements and I checked them with the manual and Wes on willysmjeeps.com. Everything measured out right – 38 1/4″ eye to eye, 1.75″ wide, 7/16″ eye, 12 leaves, 6 clamps, NOS. They still have the green paint, leftover sticker residue and canvas tag remnants. Only problem was that all of them are the same – front springs. Good thing is that I need the fronts more than the rears! I just realized that the picture makes them look like they are used springs – they actually do look new with a little surface rust along the edges. I guess I will check them out in the next couple of days to make double sure they are right. I will have to order some new bushings before I put them on – rubber kind of deteriorates over 50-60 years time and they have a few cracks in the rubber. All in all, I am very happy about this find! Once I double check the fit, I will have the other 2 up for sale (or trade for rear springs).
OK, it has been suggested by a few fellow Jeep enthusiasts that instead of continuing to call my Jeep “she”, that “She” needs a name! OK – what should I call her then? Suggestions? You can comment on the blog or email me.