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Builds: Dan’s Grandfather’s CJ-5 Part II

• CATEGORIES: Builds

You’ll remember we first met Dan and his CJ-5 from his discussion of his Hudson Steering to Saginaw Swap.

Dan has provided us with some additional coverage of the resurrection of his Grandfather’s jeep.  This might just become a series :-).  Besides, I’m a sucker for anyone will to take the time to breath life into the family jeep.  There’s plenty of people who would have junked this CJ-5.  Thanks for sharing Dan!

Dan writes, “One of the great things about a Jeep project is that you can work on all the little things while you save up for or look for those parts for the big jobs. Here is a brief look at some of my smaller repairs.  First, here is the project Jeep. A 1955 CJ5. [editor’s note:  the front shackles were reversed on this CJ-5 which produced some understandable discussions about whether this was actually a M-38A1.  Clearly it’s not :-).]

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Starting with the gas tank, after cleaning all the surface rust off of the gas tank, I discovered a series of little holes. Now you can easily find an after-market steel or plastic tank, but for about $5 I may be able to fix it.

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Here is the gas tank all cleaned up and patched with epoxy (JB Weld).  If it works than I saved about $100. If it doesn’t work, well then it didn’t cost me too much to give it a try.

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Here is the finished gas tank all sealed, primed, and painted.

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Some parts like the gas tank and instrument cluster are easily found new, while others like the E-brake handle and bracket are much harder to find. This is a restored instrument cluster and emergency brake handle and bracket. The emergency brake bracket had to have a bit of welding done to it before it was usable again.

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A close up of the restored instrument cluster. It was cleaned and painted. The bulbs and wires were replaced and new gasket was made made. I tested each of the gauges and reset the odometer to 0. It didn’t have far to go, and it wasn’t its first trip around [Editor’s note:  Dan’s grandfather put the mileage at 500,000.  Even if off by a couple hundred thousand miles, the bottom line is the same — the jeep was loved to pieces, literally]. This way I know how many miles I’ve put on it since the rebuild.

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This is the back of the instrument cluster. Notice the resistor that my grandfather installed years ago. This is what lets it run off a 12 volt system even though it was designed for 6 volts.

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Moving to the front of the jeep, here is the finished grill. I left a few dents and holes for fun and character. The marker lights are original as far as I can tell. The headlights are H4 halogen type for a modern Jeep. They fit perfectly. I used weather striping for the grill to hood seal.

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Shifting behind the grille, it’s hard to believe that the battery had slipped forward and crushed the headlight socket. I had to pound it out and epoxy in a new piece of aluminum. Then I painted it with galvanizing spray paint.

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As often happens, the windshield needed a good cleaning.  This is the windshield and its hinges all sand blasted and coated with Permatex rust killer. I pulled out about a dozen hornets nests from inside the windshield duct work.

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Here it is all finished with new rubber and glass. After searching around for CJ5 glass I figured that I’d just take the old windshield to the local auto glass shop. It is after all just flat automotive safety glass. They used the old windshield as a pattern and cut me a new one in two days. It only cost $75. Installing the glass was a challenge to say the least. One hint is to use a lot of Windex as a lubricant and weed whacker string to help feed the rubber around the glass. I still have to mount the new electric wiper motors.

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The front view of the windshield. I replace all the nuts and bolts as I go. Whenever possible/practical I use stainless steel fasteners. This Jeep spent its life either up in the Colorado Rockies or on a ranch in the Washington State Colville Indian Reservation. Either way, there was no hardware store within an hour or two drive. I found many items being held on with one wood screw and one square headed bolt.”

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That’s all for this post.  You can view Dan’s previous post about his Hudson/Saginaw swap here.

 

2 Comments on “Builds: Dan’s Grandfather’s CJ-5 Part II

  1. Mitch

    Lookin Good!… Is that JB weld you used on the gas tank? FWIW I tried the same thing and it would hold for a little while then leak again…I finally replaced it. I hope you have better luck than I did.

  2. Dan

    Thanks,
    Yep, it’s JB Weld. I applied it in multiple coats making sure that each one was a little larger diameter than the last. Also, the tank was very well cleaned and dried before the application. I guess we’ll see if it works. If it does leak than I’ll just buy a new one. I won’t mess with it too much more since it is fairly inexpensive and easy to replace.

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