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Unread 04-29-2006, 05:22 AM   #16
linstrum
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Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Otero County, New Mexico
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part one c101 jeepster nightmare

PART ONE
I bought my '68 Jeepster C101 second hand in 1976. It had 26,000 miles on it. I drove it home to Moorpark, California from Independence, California. Within a week I had my first problem when the front differential pinion shaft seal startedleaking. I ended up rebuilding the front unit after I found what looked like aluminum paint in it. One of thebearings had ground itself up, taking out the other parts. About two weeks after getting it rebuilt I drove to town andheard a crash thump inside the driver's door and when I looked the window glass had disappeared down inside the door. Itook it apart and re-fastened the window cranking mechanism back because it had never been correctly fastened at thefactory. While I was at it I fixed the door hinges by elongating the mount holes about TWO inches so the door wouldclose without having to slam it REAL hard. The door parts had been welded together crooked at the factory. The clutch used a longcable from the pedal to a bell crank and then another long cable to the bell housing. The cable operated with greatdifficulty and about three months after buying this mobile junk pile the tab that the cable clevis pin fits broke offof the pedal. I spent about ten minutes getting the clutch pedal off and was all set to arc weld the tab back when Idiscovered that the clutch pedal was made from solid BRASS! I couldn't frugging believe it! A simple arc welding job wasnow a welder's nightmare since brass can't be welded easily. I cheated and silver brazed it on with an aircraft gradeeutectic nickel silver solder. About two days later the clutch cable pulled the sheath mount up through the floor andI had to gas weld the floor back together. Oh, by the way, the break pedal was a regular steel stamping like the clutch pedalshould have been. By now summer had passed and on the first cold day that I needed the heater I found that it didn'twork. I turned the heater blower on and I could hear it running but no air came out of the heater box. I spent a fewhours taking it out and what I found just floored me. I couldn't fruggung believe it, once again, what I found. Theheater box had no openings in it for the air to get in and out of. It was a totally enclosed fiberglass box with ablower and heater core in it and no way for air to get into it or out of it. Yup, a completely closed up AIRTIGHT BOX! I got atwo-inch rotary hole saw and sawed inlet and outlet holes in it and attached the air ducting hose that went to the defrostervents, which had just been hanging there from the day it left the factory because the guy on the assembly line whowas supposed to attach it had nothing to attach it to. As soon as I started using the heater the core started to leakbadly, so I took it out again and found that it was made from aluminum. If you don't already know, aluminum is a royalpain to solder. But I bought some aluminum solder and soldered it. Thankfully it has never leaked again. One day Ismelled gasoline very strongly when I went out to drive into town. I looked under it and there was a little puddle ofgasoline so I looked up at the underside of the tank. There was a drip of gasoline hanging at the end of a long crack inthe tank. Yup, the froigang stupid gas tank had a crack in it and was dripping gas. I took the tank out, drained it,filled it with water, and after prepping the steel I silver soldered up a ten-inch long crack in the bottom. You mustremember that this Jeep had only 28,000 miles on it by now and that I had bought it from a 72-year old retired watercompany employee who liked to go fishing on Sundays up at Tuttle Creek close to Whitney Portal just west of Lone Pine(California). The version Jeepster C101 I had was the mini-pickup, sort of a forerunner of the Chevy Blazer style thatcould be set up as a station wagon or pickup, depending on the cab or body that it had installed. END PART ONE There is a text limit of 10,000 characters that won't allow me to post this as one article.


Last edited by linstrum; 05-06-2006 at 03:04 AM..
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Unread 04-29-2006, 05:24 AM   #17
linstrum
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part two c101 jeepster nightmare

PART TWO
I bought some sacks of cementfor a building project I had and when I went over a speed bump in the lumber yard parking lot the Jeepster suddenlywas driving crab-tracked! WHAT-THE-HELLISGOING ON!!! I stopped, got out, and looked, and saw that the rear axle hadslid all the way forward in the wheel well and the tire was rubbing. When I crawled under and looked I found that theaxle "U" bolts were loose and the axle had slid up the leaf spring as far as it could go. I unloaded the sacks ofcement, got the bumber jack out, and jacked the back endup. I had my tool box with me by now out of self defense, so I loosened thenuts up even more and kicked the rear axle back down where it wassupposed to be and made sure that the locating pin forthe mounting pad on the axle tube was dropped into the mating hole in the leaf spring.I tightened up the "U" bolts againand then tightened up the S.O.B.'s (stupid old bolts) on the other side while I was at it, which of course were loose.I loaded the sacks of cement back. On my way home there was a loud thump-CRASH again and suddenly one side of theJeep was lowerthan the other, so I stopped again to see whatthehell was going wrong now. The left rear corner of the body wasabout six incheslower than the other side and I figured the leaf spring on that side had broken. The tire wasn't rubbingin the well, so I drove pretty slow home and unloaded the 5-sacks of cement, which weighed 470-pounds, not all thatheavy at 94-pounds each. When I looked I found that the spring had notbroken, instead the front spring mount had brokenoff of the side of the frame because it had never been welded on. It had been tacked in place butnever welded! Theother side was the same, so I went and bought some1/8" E6011 welding rod for doing vertical and underside welds andarcwelded the stupidamned things on like they should have been at the factory but hadn't. By now I thought that I hadall of the bugsworked out of the Jeepster, there was NOTHING left that could go wrong! When I had been up at Lone Pine andIndependence I had met a nice guy up therewho lived way far to the east over by Las Vegas, Nevada, in a little towncalled Tecopa. Tecopa is still in California but pretty closeto the Nevada State Line, just outside of Death ValleyNational Park and Monument to the south and east. He had invited me to go out to his ranch tocheck out his farmingoperation and to get there I went through Death Valley. This was in August when things get really hot out there andatFurnace Creek the official temperature was 127° F. The Jeep ran flawlessly and I had a nice visit with the guy out atChina Ranch. One week aftergetting back home I went to start the Jeep up and It would just barely run, blowing big cloudsof black smoke. I checked the timing and found thatit was way retarded. Since the distributor was not loose and hadnot rotated it meant only one thing, and that one thing was unthinkable - - -THE CAMSHAFT TIMING WAS OFF! Yup I wasright, the stupid valve timing was way off, too. I towed the Jeep into my garage, pulled the radiator,water pump, andall the other stuff from the front of the little Buick 225 V6 to get to the timing cover. When I got the cover off was abouttheclosest I have ever had to having a full blown temper tantrum as a full grown adult! What set me off was that I sawmost of the timing gear teeth fromthe camshaft gear lying in the front of the oil pan. There were enough teeth left tokeep the timing chain from falling off and fortunately thetiming was not off enough to have crashed a valve into apiston. If that had happened I think I would have pushed the Jeep over a cliff and walked away.But I was lucky, real lucky. Thathot drive through Death Valley had loosened all the PLASTIC teeth on the camshaft gear and they had fallen offafter I hadgotten home. I have often wondered who the rocket scientist was who thought that NYLON teeth were a good idea to put on anenginetiming gear? I'd like to take him out to Death Valley when it is 127°F and tie him to a post in the hot sun. Orbetter yet, make him walkfrom Stovepipe Wells to Furnace Creek when it is that hot! Yeah, phenolic plastic fiber gearsare okay because they take the heat in an engine justfine, but nylon is a definite no-no. I replaced the plastic gear with asteal gear, which took me a day's labor. My sister was having cartrouble so I loaned her the Jeep to drive to work. Sheworked swing shift and about midnight she called me and said that the brake lights wouldn't gooff and had run thebattery dead and could I go up and give her a jump start. I borrowed my father's car and drove up to see what was wrong.The brakelights were on alright, which meant that the brake light switch was stuck on. I jumped started the Jeep but when mysister went todrive off she had a problem. When she put in the clutch to shift gears she was slammed forward and almosthit her face in the windshield. Whatthehellsgoing on NOW???!!! I got in and tried to drive it and very quickly foundthat the brakes were locked up. That was why the brake lights were on,the master cylinder had pressure in it and thebrakes were on. At 12:30AM I was in a parking lot working on the master cylinder of the stupidjinxed Jeepster, trying tofind out why the thing was pressurized. I undid the brake lines and pulled the unit out and right there took it apart.Icouldn't get the thing apart and when I shined my flashlight down into the cylinder bore I saw the snap ring on theend of the piston shaft that holds theguts of the unit together had broken in two. The sharp edges of the snap ring hadgouged and bit into the sides of the cylinder bore and had bound themaster brake piston for the rear brakes in thepressurized position, locking the rear brakes. I pulled the snap ring out and put the thing backtogether without thesnap ring. It didn't need it to work. By now it was spring again and the warm weather was here again. Suddenly the Jeepbeganpulling off to the right side very hard when I put on the brakes. I yanked the right wheel off and removed thedrum to inspect the brakes. I saw theweirdest brake shoes and drum that I had ever seen. The inside half of the drum was 11.5-inches in diameter and the outside half of the drum was11-inches in diameter. I had never seen a stepped brake drum likethat before, but what the hey, this was a Jeep and they do thingsdifferently. I called up the car parts place and askedhow much the stepped drums and shoes cost for a 1968 Jeepster. The auto parts guy said whatstepped drum and shoes? Hehad never seen them either, but to bring them in and they would order some for me. I took them in and the guylaughed,saying that the brake shoes had been installed incorrectly and had cocked off to one side and had worn the sjoesand drum like that makinglook stepped. These were virgin factory brakes the way that they had been put on at thefactory. That cost me two new front drums and aset of new shoes to repair, which was not cheap. I put the brakes in andthe next day I put a 1968 Jeepster for sale ad in the paper. The one I have now is nothing likethat one, it was puttogether right the first time. I can only theorize that a union strike was about to start the day my first Jeepster wasbuilt, or itwas made on a Monday or Friday. It took me twenty years before I would ever look at another Jeep afterowning that one. Drive safely. Rich Linstrum
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Unread 05-03-2006, 02:48 AM   #18
Muddy Tj Zack
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That Jeep didnt sound like to much fun to drive....but its always fun working on things, I guess you got some practice. One thing I think you should check up on thought is your space bar...haha I had a helluva time reading that post at times!!
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Unread 05-03-2006, 03:28 AM   #19
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wow do your fingers hurt 20,000 characters damn
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Unread 05-04-2006, 10:28 AM   #20
JeepRocks86
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My wheel fell off the other day on the way to the 4wd club meeting. I was running my 36s on my tj with wheel adapters 4.5 to 5.5 because that's what the wheels have. The inner lug nuts came off so it fell off going down the road. Cop pulled up "you ok?" "yea, the inner lug nuts on my wheel adapter fell off and so the wheel fell off" "um ok, i'll just sit here with the lights, Wrecker on the way?" "nope, a buddy of mine is on his way with a larger jack (forgot my Hi-lift) and we are going to fix it right here" then he had a puzzled look.
Ended up not going to the meeting, didn't want to chance it anymore. Lots of people I knew drove by and either honked at me or stoped to talk
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