Just a little update

Well, as some of you know, I went to the local MVPA (Military Vehicle Preservation Association – to which I’ve been a member for 15 years, I joined back when I bought the Jeep) meeting on Wednesday. They are called MVCSC (Military Vehicle Collectors of South Carolina) and are based in Columbia. http://www.themvcsc.com/themvcsc/Welcome.html
It was a pretty good first meeting for me – I got to meet about 10 or so guys (the ones that were standing around bs’ing and drinking). Most of the others were running around working or helping others. The “compound”, as they call it, has all kind of vehicles and trailers, an enclosed shed with work bays and a toolroom, a classroom, containers (40′ shipping containers)full of equipment and parts, military tents set up – all kinds of stuff. I talked with a couple of guys for a long time and learned a lot about what the club does and is all about. It is a non-profit club which receives a lot of equipment and preferred status with the local military bases a far as surplus and access is concerned. They are invited to, and attend as a group, many shows and events all through the year – their busiest time is in November and December though. They attend anything veteran or military related in NC, SC and GA. They also do car shows and holiday celebrations (St. Patty’s Day in Columbia they run a beer stand!). They went to Charleston to Patriot’s Point and did a display and got to sleep on the Yorktown.  And they also do fund-raisers for the club and for military charities. This seems like something that fits me pretty well, so I think I will be joining the club after a few more meetings. My work schedule won’t allow me to make but about half of the meetings, but they say that’s fine – as long as I can do something in the hobby.
As far a the Jeep is concerned, I ordered a new fiber washer and seal and gasket for my water pump yesterday – fingers will be crossed when I work on that one more time.

Back to the water pump

Yesterday (Sunday, Jan. 22nd 2012), I went to the shop while Jordan was riding her Jeep around the yard (in the mud, of course) and did a little on the Jeep. I decided to put a water pump together by the manual using the new (import) impeller that showed up and the seal kit I ordered a while back. I put everything together b the military rebuild manual. The pulleys didn’t lined up, so I pulled it back off and pressed the shaft farther into the water pump housing until I had the correct pulley depth from the engine. Of course by doing this I had to eliminate a safety feature (a retaining wire that goes in a grove between the shaft and housing) because the shaft was too far in to line it up. Also, by pressing the shaft in the required 1/2″, the impeller was about 5/8″ from the water pump body – which I knew didn’t look right. So I pressed the impeller down until it was close – then the whole assembly was locked up, so that DEFINITELY wasn’t right! So I pressed the impeller back to military specs and the pulley back to where I  needed it. Then I installed it back on the motor. The belts lined up! Then I filled the radiator with plain water (in case it leaked ir something). I left the fan off because it was cold outside plus I was going to be working around it a lot. I fired her up and let her run a while – the temp got up to around 170 deg. before I finally shut her down – it was getting late.

This afternoon (when it finally got up to around 47 deg.) I went back out. I had been doing some research on www.willysmjeeps.com and my military manuals on my computer and found 2 things. First, I had installed the seal assembly in the water pump backwards, and second, I had the support bracket for the generator bolted to the front of the generator instead of the back! The mounting point for this bracket is about 1/2″ thick, so that makes up for the 1/2″ that the pulleys were out of alignment! Also, I found out that if the impeller is too far from the water pump body it won’t pump, and that the military rebuild specs just say to press the impeller on until the impeller body is flush with the end of the shaft – mine is flush with the end of the shaft, but about 5/8″ away from the body.

The first thing I did was change the support bracket to the back of the generator – I only picked up about 1/4″ there, but the generator pulley was straighter also, so the belts shouldn’t rub as much (and wear them out) – so much for that being the 1/2″ I needed! I pulled the pump back off and then decided to play around with my other spare pump and broken impeller to see what it would take to make everything work like it should. I played around with it for a while and found out that if I just press the pulley down until it is almost touching the bearing on the shaft, along with the 1/4″ I picked up by moving the generator bracket, the pulleys lined up!

So I set out to fix the rebuilt pump. I tore it back down, and when I did this I realized that when I put the seal assembly in backwards it allowed the fiber washer to crack and almost break in half.  Also, when I pressed the impeller down too far, the little cast iron legs on it broke (3 out of the 4 broke off). Sooo, the only thing I could do was set the pulley depth and install the retaining wire until I can get a new fiber washer – my NOS impeller I ordered last week should be here this week also. After I set the pulley depth I checked it on the engine to make double sure that it was right – it looks good!

I also figured out that the engine wasn’t getting enough gas with the can sitting on the cowl – when I set it on the windshield frame with the hose straight it ran alot better, so I’m thinking some sort of IV type of setup hanging from the windshield (until I get the whole fuel pump/cam/electric fuel pump thing figured out)!

Once again – it’s a couple of steps forward, but only one step back, I’m making progress!

Just a little info

I sold my foreign (Omix Ada) water pump on eBay to a guy in Australia yesterday for $50 – shipping was $66. I ended up losing $13 on that one, but that was less than the $22 I would have lost if I would have sent it back to the place I bought it from and paid the 20% restocking fee. I shipped that one out today.

UPS came today and dropped off a package – guess who it was from? The people I originally ordered the impeller from, what, 3 weeks ago? The one that was back ordered, so I cancelled the order! Now I have an NOS one coming, but have this import one staring me in the face – decisions, decisions! No telling when the good one will get here.

I emailed the guy I bought the 2nd pump from and told him I was going to return it, so I’ll be shipping that one back tomorrow. I’m sure it will be a month before I get my money back though.

The weather looks good (temperature wise anyway) for a couple of days this week, so who knows – maybe I’ll get something done, maybe not – starting to not give a damn at this point!

Got my 2nd new water pump today

This one is made in the US and guaranteed to fit. I got up at 10:00 this morning because UPS almost always delivers at 10:30. At 11:45 I decide to go back to sleep because I have to work tonight. At 12:15 the dog starts barking – UPS is here! I get my package, check out the new water pump, throw my work cloths on and run out to the shop to test fit it.

SAME DAMN THING! Except this one is only 3/8″ off instead of 1/2″. I took a couple of pics to send to the dealer, took the belts back off and the pump and went back inside to do some research and venting (my anger).

I sent the dealer that I bought it from an email with pics. He said he would check the rest of his stock to see if the pulleys were installed at different heights and get in touch with the manufacturer for more info/advice. He also said if I can’t figure something out to let him know and he would send me a return UPS label and refund my money! Now thats a dealer!

I did some research on the Willysmjeeps forums and asked a few questions. I came to a few possible solutions:
1) if my import pump doesn’t sell on ePay, I can try pressing the pulley farther down on it – all or nothing here once I do it, because can’t resell it or return it.
2) take the pump off of my parts jeep and replace the seal out of the rebuild kit I already bought
3) buy an impeller and replace that and the seal in one of my old pumps that I broke the impellers on

After some thinking and searching, I found an NOS impeller at a place in Georgia and ordered it. He has a CRATE of WW2 surplus impellers he’s selling – and yes, all Willys L134 (WW2) and F134 (like mine) have the same water pump, so it will work. I’ll put one of my old pumps back together using the new seal and star washer and the new impeller. I know this route will work because the thing came off the Jeep.

Passenger’s side is done

This side didn’t take nearly as long – 3 hrs from taking the wheel off to cleaning and putting up tools instead of 8! The only difference was that I had my parts washer to use this time and didn’t replace the king pin bearings and races on this side.

Everything went about the same on this side as far as disassembly except that the axle came apart and ball bearings went in four directions (they are 3/4″ bearings, and only four of them, so it wasn’t that big of a deal). The lower king pin bearing on this side actually looked fine, and the upper one was rusted but not falling apart – which was weird, because moisture usually goes to the lowest point which is the lower king pin bearing, not the upper one. On the spindle where the inner hub bearing rides was kind of scored up for some reason, but the bearing was fine – maybe the bearings have been replaced, but not the spindle? The grease wasn’t as hard on this side either, but was the same type as the other side – silver around the axle Bendix joint and yellow in the knuckle. It had the same burnt, sticky, molasses type crap in the hub and bearings too.


Here’s the disassembled knuckle on the passenger’s side. Notice the silver grease on the Bendix joint of the axle (left), all the caked up grease inside the knuckle (top left), and the burnt looking grease on the parts in the middle. The king pin bearings are at the top middle. The left one is from the top (it was rusty). The outer wheel bearing is in between the spindle and hub (lower right) – notice the gooey crap that was in it. The whole hub and inner wheel bearing were packed with the same stuff.  There was a method to my sorting of parts here!

Here’s a close up of the axle Bendix joint (before it cam apart) on the left with its silver grease packed in it, the knuckle with its old yellow grease caked all up inside it, and the upper rusty (left) and lower (right) king pin bearings at the top – packed with something that sort of resembled grease! But they did turn (sort of). You can better see the burnt looking grease in the lock out hub gears and the end of the axle in this pic.

And here’s a pic of the recently disassemble axle bell. You can see the mixture of silver and yellow grease that was 3/4″ thick caked up all the way around the inside of the axle bell. I had to take my fingers (with latex gloves on) and scoop it out before I cleaned it up completely with paper towels. I did the same thing with the axle before I put it in the parts washer.

After it was all cleaned up, I polished the outside (they call it the ball) of the bell with 320 grit sandpaper so that the rubber and felt seals would be able to do their job of sealing.

And in case you forgot (from the last post) what the clean parts look like (because I didn’t take any from this side), here they are:

After I put the knuckle back on, I mixed up another batch of Grease/oil slurry and filled it up, put the axle back together (which to a little while to figure out – it fell apart so easy!), greased it up and put it back in. Everything else was the same as the other side – just easier this time. The o-ring on the lock out hub still needs replacing on this side, but at least it didn’t fall apart like the other one – it’s just flat. I got the lock out hub put back together on the first try on this side! This side feels like it is tight (bearings) too, but I think I have them adjusted right.

Another thing. When I finally got the Jeep cranked up (I flooded it when I was going to turn it around so I would have more room to work in the shop – then I ran the batteries down – had to charge them individually while I was working on it) and went to pull up the hill out of the shop, both tires started spinning all the way up the hill. To me this would say that it has a locker or a limited slip in it. When I had the diff. cover off changing the gasket I didn’t even pay any attention to the diff., so maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t. The only ones that had them from the factory were USMC, and judging from some other things, this Jeep could have been USMC at one time. It just doesn’t have the USMC rear cross member, but I did see forest green under the beige on the tub and it did have under coating under the hood (both USMC specs). So, until I can get back in that rear diff., I’ll just have to wonder and hope – if it is USMC, the front axle will have a locking diff. too! 🙂

Driver’s side is done! – I hope

Well, Autozone finally got my seals in – I got there to pick them up at about 5:00 this evening. Also picked up some more wheel bearing grease (for the king pin and wheel bearings and axle for the other side that I have decided I need to do), antifreeze for my car and some for the jeep (the American made water pump is supposed to be here Thursday).

I need an o-ring for the selector hubs on the axle (both sides) because it broke apart when I pulled the cap off while taking it apart. I’ve checked a couple of places around town so far, and decided I might as well order them from the manufacturer – seems it is a standard diameter o-ring, but it is a very thin one that nobody has (they all have the 1/8″ thick ones, but mine is half that – easily). I just put the old one back in since I won’t be driving in any water or mud any time soon – it’s purpose is to seal out dust and water from the hub.

I got home and threw the bearing in the hub and went to put the new seal in. I checked the number inside the new Timken seal – it was different from the number on the box – Uh Oh, here we go again! Then I remembered the number on the box is a National part number, not Timken (I don’t know why it was labeled like that). I checked the fit in the hub and on the spindle and it seemed right, so I hammered it home. I put the outer bearing and nut on and adjusted the preload like the manual said to – seemed tight to me. Then I put the lock washer and jam nut on – turned the hub and it was too tight then. I played around with it until I thought I had the right adjustment – we’ll see when I start driving it a little.

Then I started putting the locking hubs back on. I laid everything down in the order that I took them apart, and even after I cleaned and greased them I did the same thing. It’s just that all of these parts can go back together 2 ways. It took me 2 tries on one part and 3 tries to get the cap back on so that you can lock or unlock the axle (to get better gas mileage). I got it back together and it’s working right now – I just hope the bearings are adjusted right – it still seemed a little tight after I put the brake drum back on. After I put the tire back on it sounded like the brakes were dragging a little too, so maybe it’s right, maybe it’s not – we’ll see!

After I got the tire back on and got the Jeep back on all fours I tried the turning the steering wheel. Boy, what a difference bearings that aren’t broken, frozen, rusted or packed with a soap like grease substance makes! It turned like a new car – almost! That is why I decided to go ahead and at least clean all that crap out of the other side and inspect it. I don’t think the king pin bearings or wheel bearings are bad – I am just sure that they are packed with the same 30-year-old grease that the driver’s side was, which means the bearings aren’t turning, which means it is steering harder and wearing stuff out every time you turn the wheel. It wasn’t that bad of a job, and I’m sure the other side won’t take a whole day, especially since I won’t be replacing the king pin bearings (just cleaning and repacking them)and races, and won’t have to wait on seals again + I know how to do it now.

Well here’s some pics:

Not a real clear pic, but it is a full view of the new fuel pump and fuel cut off valve, the knuckle put back together all the way to the point of the brakes and spindle being on with then clean parts below greased and ready to be put back together.

This is a close up of the new fuel pump installed yesterday. I ran the factory steel fuel line up to the carb. The fuel cut off valve that I stole from my parts chassis and cleaned up is the brass and copper thing on the left. I decided to break from being factory original and install a fuel filter and flexible hose after the valve going to the fuel pump (it’s not a factory original piece either, so I guess the filter does matter. Originally it had a 3″ steel line after the valve and had a flexible hose connected to that and the fuel pump. The reason I went with a fuel filter there is 1)to protect the fuel pump, and 2)in case the in tank fuel filter plugs up, I can take it out and just use this one because the in tank one (when you can find them) runs about $45 – this one is less than $5

Here is a close up of the clean hub, bearings and selector hub parts greased up and ready to put back together.

Everything put back together and looking good.

Fuel pump is on

I got the new fuel pump put on today, which (of course) was not as easy as it sounds. I started by removing the old one and cleaning the old gasket off of the block. Then I inspected the cam lobe (that works the pump) because it was real shiny and caught my eye. The damn thing was worn down for some reason! Maybe the old pump foot wasn’t moving as far as it should (I checked it – it was moving but don’t know if it was moving far enough?), but it sure is worn – I hope that it moves enough to make full fuel pressure – if not, I’ll be pulling the cam to change that lobe. When I started tightening the first bolt that holds the pump on, it snapped (par for the course!)! So I had to take the pump back off, drill a hole in the part that broke off and got it out with an easy out. Then I put the pump back up and found another bolt. They tightened down fine this time. I cranked the engine (without the water pump on) up and ran it long enough to verify that it was making pressure on the fuel pump end and vacuum on the vacuum pump end. Then I shut it down. I found the old fuel line that runs from the pump to the carburetor and fished it all around the engine (factory routing) and connected it to the fuel pump, but not the carb yet (I’m still running it off the gas can on the cowl until I can get my gas tank modified a little more). Then I found my old factory fuel shutoff valve – the packing and spring were gone in it, so I went to my old parts chassis and swiped the one off of it. It was stuck, but after I sprayed some penetrating oil in it and worked it a little, it was fine. I installed it and an inline fuel filter before the carb.

My hub seals didn’t get on the Fed ex truck on Friday, so they say they will be there AFTER 4:30 tomorrow! I guess I’ll be finishing running the fuel lines to the tank and taking the tank back out to weld in the tabs for the fuel cap chain and the strainer, and bolting the fuel pickup and sending unit in. And, of course, I will have to repaint the areas where I welded because it will burn the paint off in those areas.

I decided to clean up the bearings and hub and 4wd selector hubs when I ran out of stuff to do. When I started to wipe the 1st bearing with a paper towel, I remembered that I have a parts washer! I wish I would have remembered that the other day when I was dealing with the rest of that nasty knuckle and axle! Would have saved a lot of work and paper towels. Anyway, I plugged it up  – and nothing! I took the tub off of it and looked down in it – all the (detergent base) cleaning solution was gone and only the sludge was left. I had another (5 gal) of solvent based stuff I bought a few years ago and never used, so I poured it in – this stuff smells like mineral spirits. I plugged the pump up and nothing, not even a hum! I pulled the pump out and tapped on it with a screwdriver and it started to hum a little so I tapped on it a little more and it started to spin. I put it back in the solvent and put the tub back on the drum. I plugged it back up and let it run for about 30 seconds, but it wasn’t pumping. I unplugged it, let it sit for a few seconds and plugged it back up – it started pumping!

It was on then! I got all my parts in there and went to it – cleaned every bit of thick, gooey, burnt oil looking grease out of everything. I got them out of the parts washer and blew them off and wiped them down. Then I packed the bearings and greased everything up. Now, when I get my seals tomorrow afternoon, all I have to do is throw everything back together – shouldn’t take long at all – SHOULDN’T!

I’ll throw some pictures up tomorrow – I forgot to take any today.

A little progress today

Well today I actually got to cross something off the to do list! I tore the front axle knuckle down and replaced the king pin bearings. The hardest part of the job was cleaning the old grease off of everything – and that stuff was old! All around the wheel bearings was something that looks like old motor oil but is sticky as molasses. I haven’t gotten to cleaning the hub and bearings up yet because I had to order the hub seal, therefore I won’t be able to do the bearings until I get that tomorrow. I didn’t want to get the bearings mixed up. The grease in the knuckle and around the Bendix joint in the axle was a silver grease that was about the consistency of a semi soft bar of soap – that stuff had to be in there for 30 years!

I had to make a bearing race puller/installer because you can’t beat on the knuckle – it’s fairly thin and it will crack. I made it with a socket that was a little smaller than the bearing race, a 2″id x 1/2″long piece of pipe, a piece of flat steel with a hole drilled in it and a 3/8″ x 4″ stud and nuts. I put the socket on the back side of the bearing race, the piece if pipe on the bottom of the knuckle, and the flat piece of metal over the pipe. Then I ran the stud through all of them and secured with nuts. The pipe acts as a spacer for the bearing race to be pressed out into. I tightened the top nut with a ratchet, and about 20 turns later it fell out! Simple as that! Installing was a little harder because as the new race didn’t want to start in straight. I had to resort to persuading it with a hammer and the flat pice of metal. Once it was started it pressed right in using 2 flat pieces sandwiching the knuckle and the race. Only the bottom bearing was bad (the cage was rusted and buckling, which was the reason for the 1/4″ – 1/2″ of up and down movement in the knuckle). I replaced both of them while I was doing it. You have to set the bearing preload before you grease the bearings or put the seals on. The target is 6 – 9lbs of pull to make the knuckle move (using a fish scale). You add or subtract bearing cap shims to get to the target pull. I got lucky there – I took 2 thin shims out and it was right on the money!

I also put new oil seals and retainers. That was a pretty straight forward job – it had a felt seal that slips over the knuckle ball, then a rubber seal that you have to persuade to go over the ball. You put the knuckle on and tighten down the bearing caps. Then you tap the rubber seal into the recess in the knuckle for the rubber seal. Then put the retainers over the felt seal and feed the retaining bolts through the felt and tighten it down – there is an upper and lower metal retainer half.

I cleaned the axle shaft and Bendix joint which was a pain. Then I packed the knuckle with a grease “slurry” which is wheel bearing grease and 140 weight oil. The idea is to have it liquid enough to run very slowly, and thick enough that it won’t leak out of the seals. That way the Bendix joint in the axle will be able to pick it up for lubrication, throw off the excess to the knuckle walls where it will run back down to the bottom and be picked up again.

Then I cleaned up and put the spindle on, followed by the brake backing plate and bolts which hold the spindle and backing plate on. I reconnected the tie rod and cleaned up my tools and area for today – will finish that side up after I get my hub seal tomorrow or Sunday.

Here’s a couple of pics – the first one was after I had everything disassembled and the second one is where I am now – to the point of cleaning/inspecting/packing the wheel bearings and reinstalling the hub.

After disassembly. You can see the silver grease on the Bendix joint on the axle and in the ball on the axle and a little bit in the knuckle

Where I am now. Ready for wheel bearing service and reinstalling the hub and brake drum/tire. Nice clean and shiny spindle there! Nasty hub and bearings on the floor. And yes, there is a jack stand supporting the jeep – you can barely see the top of it.

Surprise, surprise

I got my water pump today – WOW, next day delivery and it didn’t cost extra!

Well, I was hopeful. I held the water pump up to the engine and put a bolt in to hold it there. When I looked at it from the side, the pulleys were no where near close to being aligned! They had to be 1/2″ off! I just had to laugh. There is no way that everything that Omix Ada makes can be so far off of spec – NO WAY  – but yet I haven’t been lucky enough to receive ANYTHING of theirs that fit or worked without modifying it! How can they sell crap like this? I guess people like me are to blame – as long as we keep buying it, they will keep selling it!

I took it back off, packaged it back up and called The Jeep Hut. They verified that I ordered the correct pump for my model Jeep, then said the pulleys COULDN’T be that far off unless it was a manufacturer’s defect – that I would have to call the distributor to get a replacement pump! I told him that I was warned about buying Omix Ada parts and I wanted to return it. That’s when he informed me about it being up to me to cover return shipping and a 20% restocking fee. I told him I would just sell it on ebay since I got such a good price on it (which I really did – most places are selling them for $65 – I paid $47). I also informed him that they lost a customer.

Sooo – now that pump is listed on ebay. I contacted one of the military parts dealers about his pumps – he said they are guaranteed to line up – they are rebuilt to military specs by his shop. Then he told me what he charges for his pumps (all the website  said was P.O.R. or price on request, which really means if you have to ask you can’t afford it!) – $95 + shipping! I told him I’d get back to him on it. Then I found another military parts dealer in CA that has his advertised as “Made in the USA”, and part #800002 (which is the military part #). So I sent him an email asking about if his parts are guaranteed to fit and about his return policy – his price is $68 + shipping. Pricey, but still DELIVERED for less than the price of the pump at the other place! Man, I’ll be glad when this pump ordeal is done!


Surprise, surprise! I called The Jeep Hut this morning as soon as they opened because the status on my water pump order hadn’t changed in 2 days. I was going to cancel if it was back ordered. I was surprised to find out that it was scheduled to ship today! I got home tonight and saw I had a Fed Ex tracking # and it is actually scheduled for delivery tomorrow! Man I hope this thing fits and the pulleys line up like they’re supposed to (it says it is for M38 and M38A1, and it is the same picture as a couple of the military parts places are selling, so it should be right). Fingers crossed! I’ll be busy all day tomorrow running around, so it will be Friday before I can work on it – and another update (with pics).