1. Welcome to Jeeps.net!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Jeep discussion topics
    • Transfer over your build thread from a different forum to this one
    • Communicate privately with other Jeep owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

My 1977 CJ7 Restoration-Modification Project

Discussion in 'Jeep CJ Builds' started by baddiesel, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. Nov 14, 2017 at 5:28 PM
    #1
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    So begins a long and expensive journey. I will preface this story by saying: "please don't expect updates too often". I have some time off during the holidays, and hope to address some items on the punch list. To give you some background, I purchased an old worn out CJ7 about 5 years ago. It kinda' ran, and it kinda' wandered down the road. It has a fiberglass tub, AMC 304 V8, 3 spd manual transmission, Dana 20 TC, AMC 20 rear axle, and Dana 30 front axle. It has drum brakes on all (4) corners. Please note: without power brakes, you learn quickly to plan your stops well in advance.

    I'm not a big fan of the AMC 304, and my knees are shot (arthritis). I located an AMC 401 (holy grail for Jeep purists) and an automatic transmission that would bolt in. The price was so costly, that it wasn't a worth while investment. The frame on my '77 CJ7 was rusty, it had been repaired with welded-on patches. So I decided to locate a decent frame, GM V8, and an automatic transmission. To make a long story short, I found a rolling chassis with complete drive train on Craig's List. It had a rebuilt GM 350, 4 bolt main; rebuilt TH350, clocked NP 205 TC, new gas tank, spring over suspension, and a frame that you can eat off of. Thought it was good buy at $2300.00. Over the last couple of years, I've purchased parts that I knew in time would be implemented. That is to say, if I can get some free time to do the work, and enough money to pay for some of the needed rebuilding and repairs.

    In order to maintain a happy wife, this project will always remain a second or third priority, as the remodeling of our house is number one. Sorry for the long rant. Hopefully, I'll be successful at posting photos.IMG_0348.jpg IMG_0351.jpg
     
    aggrex, JKBob 25 and OFFGRID like this.
  2. Nov 14, 2017 at 5:35 PM
    #2
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Here's some pics of the Franken-Jeep. I will bolt my '77 CJ7 on this rolling chassis. It has wide track axles, and front disk brakes. IMG_0445.jpg
     
  3. Nov 14, 2017 at 5:43 PM
    #3
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    I really want your project! I want to see how you fit that tub over those headers. That motor is a work of art!
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  4. Nov 14, 2017 at 5:59 PM
    #4
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Thanks! There's a lot of work yet to do. I'm removing the NP205 TC, and installing a Dana 300. After it gets rebuilt, and the twin stick mod, I'll have my Christmas present. Header fitment is not a problem, already "dry fitted" a YJ body on it.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  5. Nov 14, 2017 at 6:43 PM
    #5
    JKBob 25

    JKBob 25 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2017
    Member:
    #1197
    Messages:
    3,748
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Bob
    Jersey Shore, NJ
    Vehicle:
    2016 JK Wrangler Sport
    2" Superlift kit. 315/ 70/17.
    I'm with OFFGRID. Would love to do that build. The GM 350. Nice motor. Great small block to build upon. The TH350. In my opinion. One of the best trannys of its time, and today.
    Awesome canvas to start with. Look forward to updates.

    Sorry dude. I know your fairly new here. And I'm a douche at times. Lolll. I sure hope your house remodeling includes that 70s like paneling in the garage. That's gotta go. :puke:. Lolll.
     
  6. Nov 14, 2017 at 7:44 PM
    #6
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    What tranny are you running? The Np205 IMO is a better TC than the dana 300. More options too. You can triple stick it! (sounds bad dont it) If youre running a the chevy that mated to the np205 clock it up and go. I understand running a dana 300 if you are using the Jeep tranny. Adapters take up space that in a CJ is very precious.
     
  7. Nov 14, 2017 at 7:46 PM
    #7
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    What part of the country are you in. I would be interested in the 205 if you got rid of it.
     
  8. Nov 15, 2017 at 2:46 AM
    #8
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Okay JKBob, the paneling is cheesy. But, it was free. Now if it was shiplap, that would be another story. lol Nope, there's not any paneling in my home lol lol. I'm getting ready for work, but I'll post more photos afterwork to help explain my decision to replace the NP205 with the Dana 300. It certainly would be a lot cheaper to leave it installed. The NP205 is already "clocked" in order to facilitate the installation (ie clearance issues, and lining up drive shafts). You can only triple stick an NP205, if you have a "doubler". That's when it's mated to another TC (I think NP203?, not sure). At any rate, there's not enough room, length wise.
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  9. Nov 15, 2017 at 6:02 AM
    #9
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    My CJ is 258 adapted to TH350 with a NP208 that I did a SYE on. It fit using a Double cardigan drive shaft, but was still short for my taste so I used Waggi front springs in the back and pushed the axle back 2 inches to get a little longer length. My rear CV drive shaft is 18" in length and is a long slip from Tom Woods. If I could have found a 205 worth rebuilding I would have shortened my drivetrain by approx. 5 inches or a little more.
     
  10. Nov 15, 2017 at 6:22 AM
    #10
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
  11. Nov 15, 2017 at 3:02 PM
    #11
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    I totally agree with your last post. My residence is located in Beaufort, NC. I work for the government and travel 9 states, maybe I could catch up with you some day. I know of a Jeep salvage yard, it's located out in the country of eastern NC. It's called Watson & Son Jeep Salvage. They have parts for CJ, YJ, TJ, and FSJ. 7100 N. Boyd Rd, Pinetown, NC 27865. (252) 944-5526. I'll bet he has an NP205. Whoops, hope I don't get busted for giving out a valuable source and vendor for parts.

    I know I don't have your experience with Jeeps, but I'm familiar with "old school" GM drivetrains. I will post some crummy dark photos in order to shed some light on the aforementioned. I agree the NP205 is a tough gear drive TC. But, so is the Dana 300, AND it's 100 lbs lighter, AND I don't have to clock it so much and give up ground clearance. The previous owner (PO for short) fabricated a very strong bracket to support the NP205, but didn't correctly support the TH350 (supported from (2) top bolts on the tail shaft of the . Hopefully, the photos will illustrate this. Additionally, I'm concerned with the angle of the rear drive shaft. The rear axle has been clocked, and angled upward, and I don't know if that's a correct way of installing the rear axle. In this application, everything has a yoke fitting (not sure if thats the same thing as "SYE"). The output of the TH350 going into the NP205 is a yoke. The output of the NP205 TC going to the front & rear drive shafts has yoke fittings as well (which I think is the norm).
    IMG_0446.jpg IMG_0446.jpg IMG_0598.jpg IMG_0446.jpg IMG_0598.jpg IMG_0446.jpg IMG_0600.jpg
     
  12. Nov 15, 2017 at 3:07 PM
    #12
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    I think my rear drive shaft might be around 18" in length, and the bottom of my TC to the garage floor might be around 10". When I return home tomorrow night, I'll post a photo with a tape measure for accuracy. Keep in mind, this has a spring over with worn out 33" tires. I think for sure the tranny needs to be supported from underneath. I'm hoping a stock skid plate/cross member will suffice.
     
  13. Nov 15, 2017 at 3:10 PM
    #13
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Sorry for all the duplicate copies of the same pic. I swear I only clicked it once (?). :annoyed:
     
    JKBob 25 likes this.
  14. Nov 15, 2017 at 3:36 PM
    #14
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    first thing. The TH350 is a 2wd model. If you have heard of th350 short tail and long tail That looks like a long tail. Hard to tell in these pics. There should be some bolt holes on the bottom of your transmission near the tail housing; this is where you would normally install a rubber transmission mount. The way you are mounted now I have a feeling that the TC and Tranny support each other and that is likely okay. My thought is that is a divorced np205 Which I think was used in the 70s Dodge trucks I believe. That is a really cool setup. In order to make that tranny work with the 300 you will have to pull the tail shaft off and completely disassemble it in order to install a new output shaft that will come with your adapter kit. If you are going through all the work to do that. you should rebuild the tranny at the same time. That is unless you have found a divorce 300 (I have never heard of one) I will try to find pics of my tranny and post them. It is correct to turn up the rear end and point it at the TC output shaft with maybe a couple degrees under to compensate for the upward rotation with forward motion, but when rotating up you should use a CV (double cardigan) drive shaft. The way it is now with a normal drive shaft you might get some driveline vibration when driving. That really is a nice setup and if it was me I would clock that 205 even higher if you can manage it.
     
    baddiesel [OP] likes this.
  15. Nov 15, 2017 at 5:06 PM
    #15
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Thanks Offgrid, I really appreciate all the info. You have a very nice Jeep!!!! Wish I could get your gas mileage. I'll research the Tom Woods double cardigan drive shaft, that sparks my curiosity. It would save me quite a bit of money if I kept the NP205. It sticks down towards the ground quite a bit. So much so, it looks stupid.
     
  16. Nov 15, 2017 at 5:39 PM
    #16
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    Here is my TH350 with the adapter for the NP208. The 205 that went to this tranny was already sold when I picked it up (DARN). It would have bolted right up to the tranny without that adapter you see there. This adapter is designed to support both the TC and Tranny on a cross member. I will have to look for a pic of my TC and drive shafts installed.

    [​IMG]
     
    baddiesel [OP] likes this.
  17. Nov 15, 2017 at 6:21 PM
    #17
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    That's really a well engineered adaptor. It even has the bottom support bracket, built-in as part of its design. Timing is everything.....sorry you missed the 205. But remember, behind every dark cloud, there's a silver lining. Yep, my transmission has a longer tail shaft section, and I agree, it looks like a 2wd model. I've researched the Tom Woods website, and I was amazed. I haven't had time to research NP 205's in CJ7s, clocking, etc.. But, from what I've read (internet only), the TH350/D300 is a very doable installation, using the stock cross member/skid plate. Hey, what section of the country are you from? I know Kenny Watson has a NP205 at his Jeep salvage yard.
     
  18. Nov 15, 2017 at 8:57 PM
    #18
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    I'm in Houston. I know it's doable. I have a 300 that I was going to use until,I ran across this 208 for almost nothing. My 300 needs rebuilt, a low gear and twin stick installed. Wasn't ready for all that.
     
  19. Nov 16, 2017 at 2:48 AM
    #19
    baddiesel

    baddiesel [OP] Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2017
    Member:
    #1984
    Messages:
    35
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1977 CJ7
    Resto-mod/build in progress: currently have new refurbished frame, rebuilt GM350 engine, rebuilt TH350 trans, NP205 TC, new paint job inside and out.
    Should have noticed "Houston" in your banner. I used to live in Austin, then Harker Heights-Bell County area. My Dad lives in Temple. I'd bring you a TC if you were just a little closer. I don't venture there too often, but before the next trip there, I'll be sure to PM you. I can tell your CJ is not a "Mall Crawler", which is probably what mine will be, until I can afford a Dana 60 rear axle, and D44 front with lockers. That alone, is over $7k. I'm afraid to "get on this" when I finish building it. I believe all the U-joints will just explode. lol I'm putting it on a Mustang dyno upon completion (cost $125.00), just to remove all myths. I believe you've built a very trail worthy and reliable rig. I love the old Willys flat fenders and CJ5's, but my legs are just too long. My knees are crushed against the dash.
     
  20. Nov 16, 2017 at 8:08 AM
    #20
    OFFGRID

    OFFGRID Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2016
    Member:
    #317
    Messages:
    2,018
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Peter
    Houston
    Vehicle:
    1979 Jeep CJ7, 258, TH350, NP208
    Howell fuel injection, header, HEI distributor, TH350, NP208, SOA lift with YJ springs in the front & GW springs in the Rear. AMC20 with G2 1 piece chromos trussed, Dana 30 with G2 chromos and 760x ujoints and MM Stainless Hubs, Geared 4.56. Tom Woods shafts, Metal cloaks, Caged, 37" Toyo MTs.
    The AMC 20 once trussed and tubes spot welded to the pumpkins and 1 piece axles installed is bullit proof. Stronger than you could ever make a rear Dana 44. The ring gear is bigger. You can find a Dana 44 from a 74-79 Waggi for 200 all day and another $1200 to build it right (axles and locker). It is only 60.5in wide so it is a good match to the AMC20 CJ7 wide track (not sure what your roller is). My PO swapped in widetrack axles. I built those up first. Dana 30 with G2 chromolly 760x ujoint axles in the front and warn Hubs now Milemarker Stainless hubs. The weak link are the hubs. The factory warns and the premium warns exploded under hard grabs coming out of mud onto dry ground on inclines. I have 37s. I bet it would do well up to 35s. I have had no problem with my well built AMC20. I love the old jeeps too. I dream of building a CJ6.
     
    baddiesel [OP] likes this.

Products Discussed in

To Top