Good evening folks. It's taken 8 years but I have finally gotten to a point where I can put some time and money back into my DJ5C project.
Background: The 1974 DJ5C Jeep started as my daily driver in highschool. It was completely stock except for some nice stainless hood latches my dad had gotten me. During my junior yeah of highschool I started to get into American muscle V8s and hot rodding. My best friend at the time got me into drag racing and convinced me to join the school bracket drag racing team. I raced with the factory 232 for 2 seasons clocking a record 22.43 second 1/4 mile @66mph on my best day
. It didn't take long to want more...
The same friend and his dad had CJ2As with small block Chevy's so I knew a swap could be done. Working part time in highschool my budget was limited. The total time to do the swap was 6 weeks building the engine and about a week putting it in while working after school and on weekends. The complete 350ci engine was pulled from a 77 Chevy pickup for $300. The original plan was to just replace gaskets and clean it up then drop it in. During the teardown I found that I had lucked out and gotten a 4bolt main block! This got me thinking more performance oriented and settled on a 383 stroker combination because why not?
The crank is an externallly balanced Eagle cast steel part, I kept the stock length 350 rods but replaced the bolts with ARP parts, new Keith black 9.8:1 pistons and molly rings, bored .30 over. I didn't touch the stock 76CC heads aside from cleaning and paint. Comp Cams...I don't remember the model, sorry, it's .454 lift on the intake and exhaust. Edelbrock performer dual plane intake with Edelbrock 750CFM 4BBL carb. Ignition is an Accel HEI with stock curve and 8MM wires with champion plugs. Jegs aluminum short water pump and 1 wire alternator. External balancer and flexplate. Hooker block hugger headers with 2.5" glass pack dual exhaust with side exit.
Radiator is the factory DJ5C size but cleaned and re-cored with a 2100CFM electric fan. The heater core is hooked up and working as well for emergency cooling but I've never needed it. Brakes are factory manual 4 wheel 11" drums but hoping to upgrade to power brakes very soon. The transmission was sourced on craigslist for $150 from a rebuilder who had built it for another drag track car. The guy never paid up and the rebuilder had to move so he just wanted to get rid of it. I just had to get a torque converter and pan for it. Both are stock replacement parts from FLAPS. Transmission mount is just slightly modified from the factory jeep member to move the mounting holes about 3 inches forward with a Lakewood bushing.
Per NHRA rules I had to extend the wheel base 9 inches to ~90 inches since it no longer has the factory engine. I moved the stock Dana 44 back which required relocating the gas tank. I installed a 10 gallon fuel cell in a locking metal tank in the back. All new aluminum fuel and transmission cooler lines but I still need to get them mounted a bit more solidly than zip ties
. The tires were just whatever monthly special Les Schwab was running P185/75R14.
I ran this setup for 2 seasons and got it tuned in to my best run of 12.86@108mph with the pipes off
. At this point life hit me pretty good and the project had to sit for the last 8 years. Uncle Sam was generous this year and I got some big debt knocked out so I finally have time and small funds to get it back into shape along with my 2A. Coming plans include upgrade to power brakes, shocks on all corners, new heads, relocate battery to the back, body off sand blast, metal repair and repaint, and maybe a speedometer