M100 resto – day 3

The other day after I had finished with the running gear of the trailer, I was worn out. I left everything outside, planning on getting back to it yesterday. Remember, I blasted the wheels, but didn’t get them primed? Guess what? We had a monsoon that night! Hard rain for about 2 hrs!

This morning I went out and found exactly what I thought I would – RUSTY wheels!

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What could I do except shrug it off and start again. I pulled the wheels off and sanded them down with 100 grit. I blew them off with air, then wiped them down with mineral spirits. Then, I sprayed rust converter on all of the seams and other areas that I couldn’t get to.

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After that, I used 2″ masking tape and taped up the tires, then wiped them down with mineral spirits again (the rust converter dries pretty fast). I took them outside for primer. I didn’t tape them completely up because I will be replacing the tires. I just didn’t want heavy primer and paint on them – I might have to use the trailer before I actually get those new tires!

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I sprayed 3 light coats of red oxide on them just to make sure everything was covered. I found out that I have an early and a late wheel – you can barely see the flat on the dish of the wheel on the right (at 11 o’clock) in the pictures above and below.

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I will leave them taped up until I get them painted – no reason to waste another hour taping them back up for no good reason!

Day 2 on the M100

I got started back on the M100 this morning. I wanted to start early on my week off, but the weather wasn’t cooperating. I started this morning with a plan! I was going to remove the lunette, casting and landing leg. Then remove the drawbars. Then remove the park brake cable, and lastly, remove the running gear from the frame and tub. Then I could flip the tub over to assess  whether it would be better to remove the tub from the frame for rust repair purposes, of leave them together.

Well, everything went perfect – then I flipped the tub over (pretty light btw  – after everything is removed). There was a good bit more rust damage to the frame than I realized. The rear crossmember bottom lip is eaten away, same with the other 2 crossmembers. The tub has rust in the front and rear sections where they meet the end panels. One of the tabs that hold the front drain bracket (and the bracket) were rusted away. I managed to save the one tab. I guess I will have to fab a new one. I was able to heat up the rear drain plug bracket screws and remove them. The wiring harness was toast. I removed it and the lights. Good thing I have a new one – built for turn signals! There was a layer of undercoating that was peeling off on the whole bottom. I took the air blow nozzle and removed a good bit of this stuff to reveal that, in fact, this trailer was an Air Force trailer – beautiful strata blue on everything! I will document this for the next owner to decide whether to restore to original or not – I am painting it OD24087 to match the Jeep.

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I decided to remove the tub from the frame after seeing all this additional rust. I identified the tack welds down the side of the tub and cut them with the angle grinder – still stuck together. I found the 2 welds on each end panel and cut them – still stuck! Then, I realized that the crossmembers had tack welds every 8″ on them, so I cut them – still stuck! After a closer look, I saw that there are tack welds on the crossmembers underneath the gussets! You can’t get to these with a 4″ angle grinder. I got the Dremel tool out and put a heavy cutting wheel on it – that worked on 3 of them. Then I ran out of cutting wheels, of course! I took a pry bar to see how well I had done – the rear of the tub was STILL STUCK TOGETHER! Looking closer, there are damn tack welds every foot or so all down the side of the frame rails! I gave up and started sandblasting!

I put my tarp down so I could reclaim the media a couple of times and got my gear out. It went pretty fast because there weren’t as many coats of paint on the running gear. I removed the wheel/tires by elevating the axle on cement blocks. That way I was able to get the other side of the springs, axle and inside of the wheels. I spent about an hour and a half or so getting it cleaned up.

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I mixed up some red oxide and sprayed 2 coats on everything, flipped it, and sprayed the under side. By that time I was out of primer and exhausted from the heat. I put the wheels/tires back on and rolled it to the shop. I will have to pick up some tape and spray bomb red oxide to do the wheels tomorrow (maybe) – I have to go back to work tomorrow night. I will get some more cutting wheels also, since separating the tub and frame for rust analysis and repair will be the focus of the work next time I am off. I think the next week off is the last one before the Georgia rally.

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Coolant leak

I was out in the shop today and noticed a puddle under the Jeep. After investigating the source, it looked like it was dripping from the center of the pump where it joins the block – possibly a gasket leak. I am hoping, however, that it is actually leaking from the seal – and that driving it until warm will fix the problem. It hasn’t been driven in quite a while. If the weather cooperates I will take it for a short drive to see if that fixes it.

I haven’t done any blasting on the trailer this week off. The weather doesn’t want to cooperate. There has been a good chance of rain almost every day. Add to that the fact that it has been almost 100 deg and almost as much humidity – not much chance in doing any blasting outside! Today was the perfect temp (low 70s), but we have had a little drizzle a couple of times. I’m about 75% sure that if I would’ve started blasting, that it would’ve poured down! That happened yesterday – 90 deg and sunny all day, but as soon as I fired up the smoker and put the ribs in, it started raining! I had to put up a makeshift teepee made with a 6′ step ladder and a tarp!

Oh well, I guess I can get back to it next time off.

Started on the M100

I pulled the M100 to the shop today to get started on it.

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I was using my old 50# Speedway pressure pot blaster that I bought about 15 years ago. It is not the best in the world – it’s a pain to set up without plugging the nozzle, but once it is going, it will blast until empty – unless you get a rogue piece of large blasting media in the pot. I bought 300# of Black Beauty (a lava media that cuts very good once or twice, but turns to dust after that). I put a tarp on the ground under the trailer and started blasting. When the pot ran out, I scooped it out of the inside of the tub and recycled it twice. Before I finished the inside, I used a whole 100# bag and it had turned to dust. I had to recycle the media on the tarp until it was gone too.

Once I started blasting, I found more rust through than I was expecting! The “small” spot at the front panel seam had turned into a 2″ wide spot and a couple of places where the floor and side panel meet. A hole had also rusted through on the right side. I guess I waited too long to restore the trailer!

Rust hole can be seen on the right – can’t really see the seam rust.

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Overall, the tub is not REAL beat up, but not perfect either.

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At the rear of the tub, a previous owner had drilled holes to mount a license plate, and a hole in each corner for drains. There are also a pair of holes about 2′ forward from the rear, at the top of the side panels – I am guessing for turn signals. There was also what looked like a sheet metal screw hole in the floor.

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The data plates are on the tub, but they are repro ones – the serial # is 500 (yeah, right!). I guess it has been restored. I did find that the trailer was originally USAF issue. It had etching primer, red oxide, Strata Blue, red oxide, then OD green on the inside of the tub.

As of now, I have almost decided to cut out the easy to replace metal and patch it, but leave the bad front panel seam alone. I don’t think I have another full blown, ground up resto left in me, and this has turned into more than I had planned (my fault for waiting so long to start on it)!

I vacuumed up the media inside the tub and used the air hose to blow the seams out. I bought some Red Oxide implement primer from Tractor Supply last week for this project – didn’t know how hard it was to find Red Oxide ’til I started looking! I used a paint brush to coat the seams and rust holes and deep pitted areas (which was from the front panel back about 18″) straight from the can. Then I mixed up about half a quart and a couple ounces of mineral spirits and sprayed a couple of coats in the tub. Turned out pretty good!

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Here you can see the rusty front seam, hole on the right, and pitting a little better – I also just noticed that there are pairs of holes just like the rear in the side panels at the front.

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Here is a shot of the rear half. You can see the matching pair of holes and the drilled license plate and drain holes.

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That’s it for this week – I guess I will try to get the underside and maybe the sides blasted and primed the next time I am off. I still have some questions to ask on willysmjeeps about the tub number being an Air Force number or not.




It’s hard to believe that this blog has generated this much traffic in the past 2 years! If WordPress paid me for the traffic my blog generated, I could pay for my engine rebuild!

Seriously, that will be coming up VERY shortly. Of course, I will post it on here. The plan is to take the short block to the machine shop on Friday for new valve guides, valve job and to check the bores. The head has already been done. Hopefully I can get the engine rebuilt and reseal the trans and transfer case and replace the parking brake parts before the Georgia rally in October. I’m also going to get the m100 blasted, painted, new tires and wiring before then too.

Red Rose Festival car show

We went to the Red Rose Festival car show in Lancaster, SC today. I drove the Jeep there (which was about 20 miles) at 7:00 this morning – it was 42 deg! We entered the Jeep and deuce in the show at 8:00. I would guess that there were around 60 or so cars there – everything from 20’s Model A’s to a 2013 Corvette. There were A LOT of 67-69 Camaros there!

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Jeep at car show

They had the judging at 2:00. The Jeep ended up winning a Top 25 award!

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Also, the deuce won “Coolest Ride” trophy!

Deuce trophy

Russ, John, Me

Deuce trophy 2

Tune up

I started thinking about the Jeep cutting off on me yesterday and being hard to start for the last few months. So today, I decided to give her a complete tune up. I replaced the plugs yesterday, so that much was done. I pulled the valve covers even though I couldn’t get a side cover gasket locally. The last time I adjusted the valves, I replaced the valve cover gasket with a rubber one, so I knew I could reuse it. I checked all of the valves and found that most were too tight. Most of the intakes were around .014″ and all of the exhaust were around .012″! For those of you that don’t know, the spec is .018″ intake and .016″ exhaust. I adjusted them all and cleaned the existing gaskets (the side cover gasket was cork and still in one piece on the block, so I left it in place). I put a light coat of Form a Gasket on the covers and the block (top cover). I also put a little on the PCV bell and the bolt head contact surfaces. I reassembled the rest of the parts I removed. While I was in the engine compartment, I noticed a pretty heavy drip coming from the fuel cutoff valve to rubber hose connection. I tightened the hose clamps and stopped that leak.

I fired her up (a little easier starting), and she idled quieter than before! I jumped in and took off up the driveway. I could IMMEDIATELY tell an increase in power! I got out on the highway and she ran up to 50 pretty fast – and I still had some pedal left. I drove about 5 miles down the road and came back to set the timing and carb.

I backed into the shop and shut it down. I pulled the battery cover off and opened the hood. I grabbed my spark plug adapter and installed it and hooked up the timing light on #1. I also hooked up the vacuum gauge to the tee under the carb and loosened the distributor. I fired her back up and checked the timing – it was around 10 deg BTDC and the vacuum was about 14. I adjusted the distributor until I got my highest vacuum reading of 16. The timing was showing around 5 deg BTDC at that point. I adjusted the carb, but the needle adjustment didn’t do much on the lean side – so I just adjusted it for best acceleration.

I unhooked everything and took another test drive. Power was slightly down, but the hesitation when you blip the throttle and the miss at idle are all but gone. I was able to cruise at 50 without sounding like she was going to come apart, and hit 58 a time or two during the run!

When I got back to the shop, I checked for leaks one last time – everything looked and ran good, but it was a little noisier when it warmed up.