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My $120 CJ7 build

Discussion in 'Jeep CJ Builds' started by daddyusmaximus, Aug 25, 2017.

  1. Nov 16, 2019 at 2:24 PM
    #141
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Well, nothing has got done on the Jeep all summer. Money is always tight during the summer because my wife is a teacher's aid, so no paycheck. Also my shoulder is NOT healing from the surgery I had back in the spring... I have just started my third round of physical rehab with it. The VA keeps telling me the surgery went well, and that it's useless to even get a new MRI for 1 year, because it will just show abnormal anyway... They say it's inflammation from the surgery. I've had 2 previous shoulder surgeries... they healed much quicker.
    Anyhow, I'm getting pissed sitting around, so I decided to start in on the axles. Well, first I took out the fuel tank. No photos, but I don't like how close the pumpkin is to it with the YJ springs, so I'm gonna get a 2" tunnel put in the front edge of it kinda like a transmission tunnel, to give it some room.
    First thing was to get one of the axles out. I decided to do the front one first. I lifted up the frame with the engine hoist,then worked the axle out from under, and onto a set of rollers.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I have too much crap in the garage, so I decided to use the Jeep itself as the workbench for the axles... I rolled it around to the rear, then hoisted it over the rear frame rails. Using double layers of plywood, I set it on jack stands on the tail of the frame, and strapped it down.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I set to work soaking every nut I could find with PB Blaster, and started in on one side. Being as my shoulder isn't up to snuff, and I haven't been able to stand long periods for years, I didn't get far, but I did make progress, so I'm good with that. I got one side brake caliper off, one Dodge truck automatic hub out, and that's where I got stuck. I stared in on the cotter pins, but the first one I came to was a PITA, and I decided to let it soak,and just call it a day. Just for fun, I tried the other side... pin came right out...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    JKBob 25, chris4x4 and aggrex like this.
  2. Dec 14, 2019 at 12:27 PM
    #142
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
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    Messages:
    303
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    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Well, the trend of nothing going right is still active. I couldn't get the front axle apart, so I ended up taking them to a friend's house. I neglected to get photos, but same ole stuff. Used the cherry picker to lift them, backed the trailer into the garage, (that took a dozen tries) and took both the "good" one and the original to his place. He works as a mechanic by trade, so he can use the shop at work after hrs. Hopefully he can heat them up, and knock them out from behind with an air hammer.
    Today, I decided to give the rear axle a try. It laughed at me... Broke a bolt off in the caliper bracket for the left side. Then I discovered what was inside...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Holy crap, I was driving this in the green CJ5 up till I tore it down to build this CJ7.
    Now, I do remember the green Jeep having a vibration in the rear when I was driving it. I figured it was the pinion bearing not getting enough oil due to how far the housing was rotated. I think I was right about that. It won't allow the carrier to rotate so I can get to the cross pin, or "c" clips... If you grab a rotor, you can twist the axles,and see the carrier try to move, but the pinion is frozen.
    Can't even budge it with my tanker bar.
    [​IMG]
    Any ideas here? Or will I end up letting Ryan take this one apart too...
    By the way... notice the nice repair job on the yoke... 3 bolts one size, 1 another. I'll change that out anyway as I'd rather have the u-bolt type than the strap type.
    [​IMG]
    How the hell do you get an axle apart when you can't rotate the carrier?
     
    JKBob 25 and chris4x4 like this.
  3. Dec 14, 2019 at 12:48 PM
    #143
    Jim Beam

    Jim Beam Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    1986 CJ7
    Fuel Injection, Dana 44s, T18, 4.10s w/lockers
    When I installed the u-bolt setup on my CJ rear diff it was assembled with the tires on the ground and the pinion nut came right off. You could try bracing the brake rotors at the wheel bolts with that big long bar.
     
  4. Dec 14, 2019 at 2:32 PM
    #144
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
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    303
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    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Not trying to get the pinion nut off. Have to get the carrier and axles out first, but I can't because, use the pinion won't rotate. Can't get to the cross pin in the diff, or the C clips. Unless I'm missing something, the axles have to come out first...
     
  5. Dec 14, 2019 at 4:14 PM
    #145
    Jim Beam

    Jim Beam Well-Known Member

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    1986 CJ7
    Fuel Injection, Dana 44s, T18, 4.10s w/lockers
    That looks like a Dana 44 with the 19 spline axles. As I recall, the 4 bolts on each end have to come out to pull the axles, which by now might require an axle puller. Just to make sure the axles stay in, I put in an extra bolt on each side on the bottom so there would be 5 bolts holding the axles in. From there the bearing caps have to come out to remove the carrier of course. On my CJ I have converted to full floating axles which changes a few things back there.
     
  6. Dec 14, 2019 at 9:36 PM
    #146
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    The front axle is a Dana 44, and probably has the 19 spline axles. The rear is a Chrysler 9.25. That's the one I was working on today.
     
    JKBob 25 and chris4x4 like this.
  7. Dec 15, 2019 at 1:47 PM
    #147
    Jim Beam

    Jim Beam Well-Known Member

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    1986 CJ7
    Fuel Injection, Dana 44s, T18, 4.10s w/lockers
    Yup, agreed, my bad. So just how is that pinion frozen?
     
  8. Dec 15, 2019 at 5:20 PM
    #148
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    It had a vibration in it when I was driving it. I think the guy that built the CJ5 it came out of had the pumpkin rotated up too far, and it didn't get enough oil.
     
  9. Dec 16, 2019 at 8:01 AM
    #149
    Jim Beam

    Jim Beam Well-Known Member

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    1986 CJ7
    Fuel Injection, Dana 44s, T18, 4.10s w/lockers
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  10. Dec 17, 2019 at 12:52 PM
    #150
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    The good news is the pinion now turns. The bad news is, it doesn't matter...
    I took off the yoke, put back on the nut, and gave the pinion couple good raps. After that I could turn the diff no problem. I got the crosspin bolt out, and started to remove the pin. Bang, all progress once again came to a screeching halt. The ring gear is so fat, it's in front of the crosspin. The pin only came out a bit,and smacked into the teeth of the ring gear, leaving me to wonder hoe the hell they put it together...
    [​IMG]
    I looked inside, and sure enough, without getting the pin out, I don't see how I can get the "c" clips out to remove the axles...
    [​IMG]
    Really starting to hate these axles...
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  11. Dec 17, 2019 at 2:39 PM
    #151
    Jim Beam

    Jim Beam Well-Known Member

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    1986 CJ7
    Fuel Injection, Dana 44s, T18, 4.10s w/lockers
  12. Dec 17, 2019 at 10:58 PM
    #152
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
  13. Mar 24, 2020 at 9:23 PM
    #153
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
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    Messages:
    303
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    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    After another long break of nothing getting done, Jeep money going to other things, (OK one was a project gun) and a bunch of crap going wrong (including all this virus crap) I'm back at it. I'm halfway through another round of physical therapy on the shoulder, and it's going much better. Should be after almost a year...
    Problem I had getting the front axle apart was I couldn't get the spindles off the knuckles. Took the old housing, and the replacement junkyard one to a friend from my off road club, who is a mechanic by trade. He was able to use a torch to heat it, then knock them out from behind with an air hammer in the shop after hrs. Of course, it took me forever to get back up there to pick them up once he did...
    [​IMG]
    So, I get all the parts home, and now I have the remains of almost two complete units to go through.
    [​IMG]
    I won't be using the 4.88 gears, of the originals, but the 3.55s of the junkyards unit are in fine shape. This will also get me a comfy 1,925 RPM @55mph and 2,450 @ 70mph when cruising down the road on my 35s... Before, it had 33s, and 4.88s, and would turn over 3K doing around 55 or 60mph. I started looking up all the seals, bearings and goodies I'll need to rebuild it, but with typical off-roader enthusiasm... first thing I ordered was an Eaton Trutrac... lol.
    Here you can see the splines on the outter that blew when the axles was still in the old CJ5, next to the nicer axle from the replacement junkyard unit. It looks to be not boogered up too awful bad, and could still serve as a spare, so It will be cleaned up and taken along with...
    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Apr 16, 2020 at 6:22 PM
    #154
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    303
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Having the front axles apart is nice, but what's even nicer is payday. My Eaton Trutrac came in from Summit Racing, and I started hitting up Auto Zone for the small parts, like bearings, seals... Being a cheep guy, I'm getting just enough at a time to get my point each time I go into town. Today I got one set of wheel bearings, races, and an inner seal for one of the front rotors to get my 5th point, and when the new rotor comes in tomorrow, I can get $20 off on it. I had to drop off the knuckles at a local shop to have the old ball joints pressed out, and new ones installed, as I have no press.
     
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  15. Apr 19, 2020 at 3:37 PM
    #155
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
    #446
    Messages:
    303
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    So I'm looking, and looking, and I can't for the life of me find bearing, and seals that are made in the USA. Damn NOTHING is made in the USA anymore. Really starting to tick me off. Took my front rotors in to NAPA to get them turned today, and checked there too. Made in Spain, Denmark, everywhere but the USA. At least it's not china or mexico... and their does have a 3 year warranty, so I ordered a bunch from there, and I'll take the mexican crap back to Auto Zone tomorrow.
    Also picking up a CJ7 hard top tomorrow. I put out feelers for a swap as my CJ7 came with a YJ top. Real PITA seeing as it doesn't have the proper YJ tailgate to go with. The guy wasn't using it, it was just sitting in his barn. He wanted to sell, but agreed to swap just to be nice. His way of saying thank you for me being a veteran. Cool. So I get home and go to get mine ready to take up tomorrow... Problem. I had taken the hatch off mine, and stashed it in the shed so it wouldn't get broken. Guess what? I can't find the bolts to put it back on. Every single nut and bolt in the hole build is up in the garage in marked baggies... except these. Well, I message the guy (facebook) and tell him of the problem. I'm hoping like hell he won't mind seeing as how he's not gonna use it anyhow. The dude says "just come get this one, and sell yours to help with your Jeep." Holy cow. He's GIVING me a CJ7 top. Now it's not perfect. It's been repaired where the hatch hinges are, and there's a hole from a bubble light because it came off a plow Jeep, but, I ain't gonna turn down free parts... So glad I sat and talked with them for a while today.
    Next thing. I go home and start in on the housing. Gotta clean it up to get ready for the new parts coming in. I notice something... the junkyard housing I got to replace my slightly bent original... isn't the same. The spring mounting surfaces are the same. The width is the same. they both use the same brakes, spindles, knuckles... but the old one has thicker wall tubing. It's only got the slightest little bend, from jumping real hard, so now I'm thinking maybe I should just get that one straightened, and use it. I won't be jumping, so the thicker wall tubing would be good insurance for me. Probably need different seals and bearings... Carrier fits either, so I guess a Dana 44, is a Dana 44... Gotta think on it, and see.
    Old axle housing I blew the hub on.
    [​IMG]
    Junkyard replacement I had to get because I couldn't find a spindle anywhere.
    [​IMG]
     
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  16. Apr 20, 2020 at 2:06 PM
    #156
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
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    Messages:
    303
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    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Picked up my knuckles today with the new ball joint pressed in. Couldn't resist a test fit...
    [​IMG]
    Also picked up my free CJ7 top. Turns out the 2 little holes where the woopie light was won't be much of a problem. I can either just silicone them, or put one of my leftover Army woopie lights there... The back hatch... well, that may be a different story. That falls squarely in the "What did you expect for free" category. It works... but it's not long for this world. It's been repaired on the top by the hinges, saw that yesterday. What I didn't see was the inside... It's gone... It will need replaced. I can still sell or trade my YJ top. Maybe take the hatch, and glass out of this to make a hard top bikini top for the summer...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    aggrex likes this.
  17. Apr 20, 2020 at 7:05 PM
    #157
    aggrex

    aggrex Well-Known Member

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    Tuffy>AEV>TTO>JW>STech>EVOcage>MagnaFlow>SpiderTrax>RockHard>TF>SpringTail>67design>Bolt>GPCA>Curt>
    That should work nicely to keep the sun off your head while enjoying the breeze. Without the glass it will be lighter to remove or install.
     
  18. Apr 21, 2020 at 5:10 PM
    #158
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    303
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    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    So, I jumped on the cragslist, and facebook sale groups in my area last night looking for a hatch for a CJ7 hard top. I figured I could sell my YJ top later to make up for buying one. Hell, I don't even remember how I got sidetracked into looking into tops, when I'm supposed to be buying parts for the front axle... I guess my TBI gave me some ADHD, but it's in my head now.
    Never did find one, but I stumbled on something that made me think I may not need a CJ7 hatch... a YJ tub. This was 3 hrs away, but it was in way better shape than the CJ7 tub I went 3 states away to get. With the YJ style tailgate, I can just use my YJ top that came on my CJ, AND not have all those rust holes to fix. There's one issue, the trans tunnel has a little section missing because he was running a 700 HP big block Ford, C6, and 1 tons, but everything else is solid. Oh, and the glass is cracked in the windshield, but I have a 2 CJ windshields.
    Talked to the guy, and he took it off the frame last night. I went down today and picked it up, along with the gas tank, since it feeds from the drivers side. Got the roll bar, power brake upgrade... and the chance to take apart, and clean a tub all over again.
    Now I will be selling my CJ7 tub, and some associated parts to help offset what I just spent. (new kitchen roof money) In the end, I thing this will work out a lot better. I suppose I could still use the freebie CJ hard top. Seeing as the hatch is FUBAR, I could take it off, and the side glass out, and have a hard bikini top for the summer. Gotta have my shade.
    [​IMG]
     
    chris4x4 likes this.
  19. Apr 22, 2020 at 3:18 PM
    #159
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
    #446
    Messages:
    303
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    I'm still missing 1 seal, and 1 race, (both on order) and the rotors are still getting new studs pressed in, but I've just about got what I need to reassemble the main axle. I ran out of money, so no new brake pads or calipers... yet. Not like I'm going anywhere in it soon. Down in the back pretty bad though right now, so probably take some time off before I get to cleaning, and prepping the housing anyway.
    [​IMG]
     
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  20. May 21, 2020 at 7:23 PM
    #160
    daddyusmaximus

    daddyusmaximus [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2016
    Member:
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    Messages:
    303
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    '79 CJ5
    360, D44 front, Chrysler 8.25 rear, 4 wheel discs, rear Detroit locker
    Well, still waiting... A friend who has set up gears before is going to show me how to do it, but he's been working a lot of hrs these days, so the axles hasn't been put back together as of yet. I have decided to spend some time working on the new tub. Looked real nice online... Looked good when I went to pick it up too.
    [​IMG]
    Now keep in mind, when I say "good" I mean "not rusted all to hell". It was, however, used as a mud toy. An open top... mud toy. Yeah, it's gonna take some cleaning...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    This thing has so much mud in it, I was finding mud inside the windshield frame all around the wiper arms... In fact, I found 2 Bic lighters in there, and one still worked.
    On the plus side, the tub has been bed lined, so it's in good shape for the most part.
    Oh, by the way, I also had to fix the trailer too. Got home with the tub, and discovered this... Lucky I made it home...
    [​IMG]
     
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