Catching Up…

Well, summer is past, vacations and Annual Guard Training are over and I finally have time to sit down and catch up on the blog.  We’ve made a lot of ground on the Jeeps and I’ll hit the high spots here.

Completing the ’84…

In the last post, I’d mentioned that all that was left was to remove the body tub.  Well, that was mostly true – we also had to remove the bolts securing the body to the frame.  After our roll bar experience, I was expecting no end of trouble getting these out.  We pulled out the impact wrench and went at them and not one gave us trouble except the one under the driver’s side seat.

The “nut” is held captive in a sheet metal box welded to a box section under the floor pan.  It had seized up and spun in the box.  Since the body is scrap, we estimated where

The '84 is sitting at the door of the shop, waiting for us to muster the courage to lift the body off.

The ’84 is sitting at the door of the shop, waiting for us to muster the courage to lift the body off.

the nut was located and cut a hole in the floor…and then cut a bigger hole in the floor…so we could a torch on it.  A lot of heat and a cut-off wheel finally separated the nut from the bolt.

So, Joel an I are standing there wondering if two guys can lift a body tub off the frame by themselves.  With a lot of grunts and

The '84 with the body off on its side.

The ’84 with the body off on its side.

groans we were able to slide it off the side of the frame and on to its side.  We rolled the chassis away and carried the tub out to the “bone yard”.

Work Starts on the ’85…

While working up the courage to pull the body off the ’84…and while Joel was away…I started stripping parts off the ’85.  We were just going to do some body work on it and leave the frame intact, but upon closer inspection, I found there is enough rust that we’re going to tear it down completely, sandblast the frame and paint it before reassembling everything fresh.

The right hand hole for the wiper showing deformation and cracks.

The right hand hole for the wiper showing deformation and cracks.

I started by pulling the wiper parts off the wind shield and found that something must have hit them in a previous life.  Add to that the fact that the left one is rusted out and the bottom of the frame is badly rusted, so a new frame is going on our list of new parts to buy.

The '85 with the hood and front clip removed.

The ’85 with the hood and front clip removed.

First, the front clip came off, starting with the hood, then the grill followed by the fenders.  Joel was back by now so he got in on actually removing the wind shield.  Finally, we stripped off all the small parts – tail gate,

Joel working on the wind shield on the '85.

Joel working on the wind shield on the ’85. The Torx fasteners prove to be a continuous source of frustration.

hinges and anything else that was bolted on.  It was partially stripped already so this job was fairly easy – except for the bolt in the tailgate hinge and the right door hinge that seized up and had to be drilled out.

The Body Comes Off

Since this tub is the keeper we wanted to handle this one with more care than the other one.  We planned a visit from my oldest son, Billy and his wife, Tasha, so that the three of us could lift it off, set it on horses and move the chassis beside it.

So, the day arrived and Joel and Billy lifted the tub like it was so much hot air.  Meanwhile, I rolled the chassis out from under it and positioned the horses under the four corners of the of the tub.  They then set the tub down on the horses and we repositioned the chassis in the center of the shop for disassembly.

Here you can see the '85 chassis in the foreground, the '84 chassis at the extreme left and the '85 body tub on horses in the background.

Here you can see the ’85 chassis in the foreground, the ’84 chassis at the extreme left and the ’85 body tub on horses in the background.

Disassembling the Chassis…

Now that the tub is off, we can get to the business of removing power train components.  First came the T-Case.  I simply lowered it onto the floor jack and slipped it out from under the frame.  The transmission was next.  It weighs 175 lbs and doesn’t have any handy lift points so I pulled a couple of bolts out of the top cover and replaced them with eye bolts.  The engine hoist was then pressed into service to lift it off the back of the bell housing.  Finally, we pulled the V-6 out of the chassis and put it on the engine stand.

This is the '85 chassis with the engine, transmission and T-case removed.

This is the ’85 chassis with the engine, transmission and T-case removed.

Now it’s waiting for removal of the brake lines, the axles and the other small parts…

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