To Top

1973 DJ-5 JeepRod Key West, FL **SOLD**

• CATEGORIES: DJ-5 & DJ-6, Jeep Rods

UPDATE: **SOLD** Was $3500.

The DJ had been damaged, so the seller though why not do something fun.

1973-dj5-jeeprod-keywest-fl0 1973-dj5-jeeprod-keywest-fl2 1973-dj5-jeeprod-keywest-fl3 1973-dj5-jeeprod-keywest-fl4

“Would consider trades for a softail.
I am begrudgingly selling my rat rod jeep project that I’ve built over the course of a few years.

Originally a CA car (except for the last 2 years it’s been here in Key West), I bought it in the San Francisco Bay Area after someone had crashed into the rear while it was parked on the road. It barely ran, had the original straight 6 in, and was a mess.

For those of you who don’t know, the DJ-5 series is an automatic, 2wd jeep from the factory. Often used as rural mail trucks, the DJ-5 often comes right and drive. This is a left hand drive, but I suspect that someone changed it to LHD before I got it.

Anyway, after I bought the truck, I quickly realized it was in worse shape than I thought – bad transmission (old borg warner garbage), the rims were bent, the entire back half of the truck was crushed…just a mess and not worth restoring to it’s original glory. So, I decided to have fun with it and make a one of a kind toy. Since I knew I was going to be moving to Key West, what better than a tiny, open air hot rod?

I cut the entire back half off the truck and custom built a small pick-up bed, complete with a redwood base, and LED tail lights. I also installed new rear shocks, and a new gas tank with sending unit. I built a roll bar (not load bearing) to support the custom vinyl top which is necessary for that intense FL sun.

The dashboard was bent and the guages were broken, so I built a redwood dash to match the bed, installed new gauges and indicator lights, and threw on a dock cleat “oh shit” handle on the passenger side. Two waterproof marine seats rounded out the interior.

I decided that the straight 6 just wasn’t going to cut it. I found dodge 318 cubic inch V8 (casting# 4104230-318-3, which google says is a “race engine”) that was paired with a torqueflight 727 automatic transmission. I figured why not, and bought it. I yanked out the old 6 cylinder and transmission and shoehorned this giant motor in this tiny chassis. It required fabricating custom motor mounts, custom transmission mounts, and a custom drive shaft.

In order to fit the engine, and the new 4 core aluminum racing radiator (with electric fan) into the engine bay, I had to push the nose of the truck forward about 4 inches. In doing so, the front fenders and hood had to go. I made a simple sheet metal hood and went ahead with the fenderless hot rod look.

Obviously, no one makes an exhaust system for a 318 crammed into a ’73 DJ5, so I had to buy header flanges and just throw on some short turndowns as zoomie headers. I welded some large nuts inside the pipes to give it a touch of back pressure. However, I have 25′ of flexible exhaust tubing, 2 collectors, 2 old flowmasters, header wrap, and all the associated hangers/hardware necessary to create your own headers. I haven’t gotten around to taking on that project yet, so I will be including all those materials along with the jeep.

After getting the engine all set up, I removed every inch of original wiring and threw it away. I installed brand new wiring from front to back, and threw in a new fuse block. I also added recessed LED marker/turn signals in the front, and took a few leaf springs out to let it sit a little lower.

I changed out the original rims because they were bent. I also chopped about 7″ off the windshield because the wiper motor and linkage was missing when I bought it. So yeah, this is a sunny day car since there’s no wipers.

After getting everything all set up, I sprayed the whole truck in a 2 part tractor enamel paint. It’s supposed to be rather resilient and seems to be holding up so far (3 years). Since I’ve had it, it was always garage kept in CA, and under a car cover here in KW. The truck is virtually rust free for being 43 years old.”

 

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe without commenting