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A little project update on Chug A Lug

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Mark W. View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Jan. 2023 at 8:50pm
lot's smarter people then me and lots of pre-planning.
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Jan. 2023 at 7:16pm
So yesterday the fickle finger of fate attacked me again. For some reason the console was not perfectly square. As a result it ended up off about 1/8" when it got to the front section of the top above the windshield. As everything is based on it being centered. I had to find a way to fix it. I won't go into yesterdays minor screw ups as they did not work. To day I went simple and made some .040" thick shims to cant the whole assembly back to square and they worked out well. So I now have the whole thing bolted in place. I managed with some effort to make the sheet of aluminum that will go over top of the console to have a 1/2"slightly angled lip that will rivet to the main cross bar on the front edge of the Gun case adding a bunch of rigidity to the joint. This piece and the top to the gun case will not get riveted in place until right before I put the .040" Aluminum skin on the top. Next step is a full electrical function test.

I still need to shorten the coax that will come from my GMRS antenna to the radio to that end I just ordered a new fitting. A couple of the guys on a GMRS facebook page recommended a GMRS antenna that has a folding base so while I will have to stand on something to fold it over (as its in the center of the top) it will allow me to pull into the garage/carport without tearing the roof mounted antenna off. Now to figure out what I am going to do as far as the AM/FM antenna goes. I might just buy a collapsible antenna. And mount it to the back side of the top not real pretty but simple. I can figure out something to hide the tube below the mount that the antenna retracts into when collapsed.


So while posting this I went out and did an electrical test on the console and dome lighting. And everything works.I was amazed at how well and how evenly the multiple dome lights light up the whole inside of the jeep. Now to get the rest of the framing done on the front section of the top so I can start on the doors and the transitions to the windshield. I also need to get the clamps mounted pretty soon.

MAN that rabbit hunting trip end of March is coming up fast.

Edited by Mark W. - 16 Jan. 2023 at 7:21pm
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jan. 2023 at 4:43pm
Picture time.

First one is the Overhead console taken from the Drivers door opening. Sorry about the glare the strip LED's I have are hard to work around sometimes.


The upholstery panels will trim this right in hiding the wiring behind the radio hard to see in this photo but the 5 panel switches are at the rear of the console.

Next up is the top section of the roof as seen from above. I have not drilled the rivet holes in the Aluminum sheet that goes over top of the overhead console yet. I will do that right before I get ready to glue the .040" aluminum skin on everything. It will be much easier to get to it as now the only way to reach it with any way to see well enough to line things up would be to stand on the cowl and the ceiling isn't high enough even if I were dumb enough to attempt that. you can see the small Micarta blocks that will be the front edge curve. I'll make a template and cut and grind them all to shape once all the structure work is done.


Next up is a shot of how the long stringers will run above the doors. Hard to see but I added a section of 1" Square .065" tube to the inside of the 1/4" x 1" angled brace that is the stringer where the skin will start to roll over the curved edge. Same deal with the Micarta blocks shown here they will get scribed and cut and ground to fit the tapered curve they will of course be the support for the skin. Where you see the little 1/16" thick spacers between the two pieces on the side is where the rain gutter will fit. The rain gutter will be made from cut down 1.5 X 1.5 X .065" Aluminum angle. That ends up sandwiched between the side walls and the top section. I have not decided if I am going to make it so the Top section can come off for more compact storage if I decide to run without the top (Not really likely)
The wedge shaped piece of Micarta will allow me some where to use small screws to hold a strip of 1/8" aluminum which run all around the top just above the Rain gutter (its the sheeting on the outside for this area).

Still agonizing on how to do the front corner and the transition from that corner to the corner of the Windshield.

Once I get this done I'm back on the Doors. Which should be a LOT of fun trying to figure out how to bend the lower panel so it matches up to the Door opening.



Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jan. 2023 at 2:33am
Progress I have all the left side blocks now bolted in place as well as some other details. It looks like I may end up within a 1/16th to 1/8th inch side to side dealing with the slightly out of wack windshield frame. SO I might be able to force that when I clamp everything down. I am going to use a turnbuckle type attachment that connects to the flange on the Windshield frame where the Above door Soft top rod fits through and then back to the top of the door Jam on my top with Micarta blocks placed along the Stringer that run to the leading edge assembly. So basically the turnbuckles will pull the frame back into the Micarta stops holding the top both down and against the frame. This should stop any movement of the frame at speed.

Bolting the block in place has proven to be a huge PITA as each one has to be done one at a time. And I have to take the frame work apart for each one to get the holes drilled on the drill press and of course working on a Step stool sure doesn't help anything. The Passenger side will be faster as I can pre drill all the holes in the frame work as I will be just duplicating the Drivers side and can use those pieces as drilling templates. Plus for some weird reason while I own maybe 1/2 dozen 17/64" drill bits (used for all the 5/16" x 18t threaded holes) I can only seam to find one that has easily reached its limits. And when you have to drill holes with a 9.6V Makita Angle drill a dull drill bit even in Aluminum is a PITA. So a new bit is on tomorrows shopping list DO THEY COME WITH ORANGE PAINT AND GOOGLE TRACKING????

Shaping the blocks will be fun as they will have Two different radii as the curved section is tapered. I can scribe both arc's on the blocks and then cut and grind to the larger radii and then with my belt grinder angle the platen to cut back to the smaller radii. But there is still going to end up a LOT of sanding to final shape with a long board and 80 grit to get it perfect. Same deal with the front edge thou no taper.

Still working out what the front corner is going to look like.

I ordered more 1/8" Aluminum sheet to use on the upper doors around the windows. Found a real good deal on eBay for some 5052 Couldn't pass up.

When I pull the top apart to do the .040" skin I will also do all the Window installs as working inside the back with the top on would be as much fun as working under the dash is.

I designed a neat way to rotate the mount for the AM/FM antenna 90° for entry into the carport (its going to be mounted up on the back of the top at the bottom of the curve so would hit the ceiling in the carport) I also found through a couple GMRS radio guys a recommendation for a great antenna for the GMRS radio that also has a fold over feature. Though I will have to stand on a step stool to reach it mounted in the center of the top to fold it. PITA but sometimes you just have to do those kinds of things. When you want nice stuff LOL

It is amazing how rigid this huge erector set is coming out there is no wiggle or movement what so ever in the frame work. I am quite happy with that.

If I built this top again I bet I could make it 50+ lbs lighter but it is what it is and the wife says I won't ever be building another one I won't have time she's waited to long to get her list of things done LOL.


Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Jan. 2023 at 8:36pm
OK lots of progress kind of. I now have both sides above the door framed out. The passenger side took like a day and a half less then the drivers as I was able to use almost every piece from the Drivers side as a drilling template for the passenger side pieces. Still have a couple of places that required hand fitting but it went very well.

I also came up with a suitable way to attach the very front edge of the top that will lap over the top of the windshield frame. I will need to find some Fab shop that can bend a nice sharp about 70° angle in a piece of 1/8" 5052 Aluminum. giving me about a 1" x 2-2.5" angle Going to do it in two sections I think I can easily join the two pieces once in place.

Where I am sitting here scratching my head bald is the corners they are so many compound curves and angles all at one time. I am seriously thinking about bringing the flat metal as close to the corner as possible. Then covering everything with plastic wrap and building the corners from PC-7 Epoxy Putty with Milled Fiberglass reinforcement mixed in. I can then sand it all to shape flowing the weird curves together. I'll never be able to do it in Aluminum or Micarta. As I am going to be painting the top It should look just fine.

The 1" square tubing is still long as I haven't decided how it will terminate yet. And like the rest of the Micarta blocks all the ones you see in these photos will be cut to their final round shape. The blocks in the very corner will end up being shaped to match the two different curves from the leading edge and the side curve.
The 2" wide piece of Aluminum sheet represents the piece that will attach to the 1/4" X 1" bar under the front edge blocks and seal the leading edge to the top of the windshield.


The Large flat piece of 1/8" Sheet shown in this is the Top and front edge of the door it will be cut on the inside for the Window. I just did this quick and dirty to help me try to visualize this mini nightmare.

The Green piece you see is a piece of 3/4 x 3/4" Aluminum square I cut one side off so that it very snugly snaps over the Rag top door channel on the back side of the Windshield frame. This then becomes the door jam along the front edge (remember suicide doors)

The 1/61" gap between the 1" Square tubing and the 1/4" thick bar above it is where the rain gutter will fit into dividing the Top section from the side section. The 1" tubing may end up becoming part of the top section to make it easier to break the top down for storage? I have to see how that will work as its the Jam along the top edge of the Door.

All the weatherstripping around the door will end up being stick on 3/4" or 1" wide soft foam tape. So that its easily replaced if damaged or like most weather stripping just falls off at some time.

 
One thing I hadn't counted on building this top is the wear and tear on the paint job. I bet I have acquired a dozen new chips in the paint. Todays was a 3/8" ratchet slipping off the moving blanket protecting the hood and hitting the back side of the drivers fender. Nice chip in the paint.

Looks like Memorial Weekend when I paint the Hard top my grand daughter and I will be busy touching up all these chips (she's actually a pretty good artist and has way more experience and better vision then grandpa with tiny paint brushes). Plan on filling the chips with tiny dots of paint building them up to slightly over fill the chip then using 2000 grit to knock them down level and I'll come back in and over buff that area.

Not sure if any of you have figured this out but one of the reasons I write so much on this Project thread is to help me organize my thoughts and to help me figure out how to do some of the weird crap I have to come up with. SO for those of you that slog through this thanks for helping me. Even if you don't know you are.




Edited by Mark W. - 24 Jan. 2023 at 8:51pm
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Flatfender Ben View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Flatfender Ben Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Jan. 2023 at 10:28pm
Well I guess we know we’re helping nowClap
Just as long as you don’t ask for help cutting the rest of the pieces out!Big smileWink
1946 cj2a desert dog
1946 cj2a bulldog
1948 cj2a blue jeep
1953 cj3b yard dog
1955 willys wagon
1955 willys pickup
1956 willys pickup boomer
1960 fc 170
1968 jeepster commando
1990 Grand wagoneer
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Jan. 2023 at 8:37pm
More update. First the bad news Had to work Thursday and gonna have to work Monday only good thing is after all the deductions and effect on my unemployment I'll end up with about $75.00 a day extra.

OK enough of the depressing stuff keeping me out of the shop.

Help in and OH sh*t handle

I been planning almost as long as I been planning on the Hard top to put a handle just below the ceiling in the top and a little ways inside of the door jam in such a way that a person can use it to help get in the jeep rather then pulling on the upper corner of the windshield frame. This is especially important for the wife who has more limited mobility then I do. Well I finally got a good design to appear in my head and after a little trial and error I have a design that works well functionally but due to being able to find some Neoprene foam tubing in the perfect color (OK Orange would have been more perfect but this is next best) I used .750" Aluminum rod for the handle and the foam came with a .710" inside diameter so it took a little pushing and shoving to get it on but it does not want to turn or slip.

I made the handle long enough (front to back) that its in a good place to reach up once sitting in the seat to have something to grab onto. (I never understood how the dash mounted handles would work causing the passenger to lean way forward to reach them) The wife thinks this will be just the ticket.

Its very stout I'm sure I could if need be hang from it. Its a little closer to the ceiling then I would have liked but I had to make the mounting brackets out of some 4" square 1/4" Wall tubing I had and making 4 of them this was all the material I could use. As the ceiling here will be the same as I showed for the back of the hard top 3mm Plywood with foam backed headliner material stuck to it. If a persons knuckles rub against it. It will be no big deal.

This photo is shot from the Passenger door opening.


The curved Micarata block just forward of the handle is one of the 4) blocks that will prevent the windshield from being pushed back by air flow. In a couple days I will show the adjustable link that is going to go from the little Aluminum eyelet just below it to the same ceiling beam the handle is attached to that will pull the windshield back against this Micarta block. Should make a very secure way to prevent any movement even up to 70+ MPH (you know me I'm crazy) the combination of Blocks and straining links will also help pull the slightly out of alignment windshield frame in its proper position (only talking less then 1/8" off)

This photo is taken from the drivers door opening looking pretty much straight up at the handle.


This gives another angle on where that restraining link will be located the end going to the ceiling beam will be about where the forward corner is on the Vise grip. Giving the link very close to a 45° angle so pulling the top down and the windshield back.

The little Aluminum Eye bolts I made are being replaced with some steel units and then it will go to a Clevis rod end then a section of aluminum rod threaded with left and right hand threads to act as a turnbuckle and finally terminating in a Rod End bolted to the 1/4" X 1" bar that runs along side the 1" x 1" Ceiling tubing.

I'm really trying to drill no holes in CHUG for the hard top and I think I'm going to get away with it. The two little Screws that hold the rear view mirror to the inside of the windshield frame are going to be used to pull the center of the leading edge of the top to the center of the frame. So no new holes.

To give you an idea the two links I am building to do this are costing $67.00 plus the cost of the about 12" of 1/2" D Aluminum rod. Would have been less but the parts I wanted only came with 5/16" 24T threads and my only 5/16" left hand tap is of course 18T LOL so I had to buy a new tap.

I don't even want to guess how much this whole hard top project is costing in materials but if it was more then $2000 I would not be surprised. My motto is pay cash and be damned the receipts.

Looks like work is going to drag me into the truck one day a week which might be a good thing it will increase the budget a tiny amount and give me 8 hours to think how to do whats next.

It sure different building something that planned compared to something you have a pretty good idea how to do. In some cases just building these two handles if a couple blot holes or another bracket had been even a 1/2" in different position it could have saved a good hour of work.

And still ahead are the two big PITA the front top corners and the Bottom of the doors.

 
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 Jan. 2023 at 6:04pm
Hard top anchoring turnbuckles done.

Hard to imagine two of these assemblies set me back almost $75.00 and 2 hours of work,



Here one is installed. I should say here they do not interfere with grabbing the handles at all. 


As I said earlier they go from the original soft top door rod hole in the windshield frame to the outside rib in the front section of the top. This has a tendency to pull the top rib out and the windshield back triangulating the force holding the Windshield frame against the angled Micatra block you see pushing against the Windshield frame. I am able to get both sides of the windshield less then 1/32" from each other front to back. I still have the top sitting approx. 3/32 to 1/8" to the left of center. Not sure if there is a way to correct that now. Well short of tipping the whole jeep on the passenger side to make up for what I did laying it on the drivers side in High school. Guess dads getting even with me LOL.

The little Clevises have a removable pin so it makes it easy to disassemble just back off the tension a little and pop the clip and out comes the pin.

I have the above door jam to install after this break and thats the last structural component to the top.

The rest is all 1/8" sheeting and smaller details before I take it a part And move it to the big layout table so I can make the rain gutters. These go in between the sides and the top section. I'm going to have my guy who does my TIG welding weld the curved sections.

Then I'll make the headliner pieces for the front section. Once I have all that done I will make up clamping jigs and attempt to glue .040" aluminum to the whole thing ending up with a nice smooth Hard top. I still have not decided what epoxy I am going to use. The debate is between 3M panel adhesive (30 min at most working time) or JB Weld (a good hour working time) I've never worked with the 3M its not cheap takes a special applicator (which rules out being able to have one or more people helping me apply the glue) With JB Weld I can make up a big batch of it and use something like an Acid Brush to apply it very quickly. The only rivets will be around the edge of the top sections. These will end up hidden by the rain gutter when the top is all assembled. I'm going to epoxy the rain gutter to the top section to water proof the seam. On the underside of the rain gutter I will use a Neoprene foam weather strip.

Man do I have a huge mess to clean up drilling dozens of holes over top of the front section of the jeep has crap every where. And I mean everywhere I am thinking I might need to pull the fuel tank out to get it all.

OK break over


Edited by Mark W. - 31 Jan. 2023 at 6:09pm
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Feb. 2023 at 2:02am
Spent today working on the lower section of the doors. Trying to come up with a pattern for bending the 1/8" sheet that will be the lower section. Looks like I will have to do this in two parts in order to bend it properly. I had one heck of a time with the rear about 6" of it due to the Door cutting across the side wall. Then I decided to explore having the lower bar on the door have a tapered piece of aluminum added to it to get the problem area within the angle I needed for the lower section to over lap the tub wall.

So I made a jig to taper cut a 1/4" x 1" bar of aluminum to taper from about .040" to .250" over 18.5" and then to taper from .250" to .065" in 2.5" I have not decided how I am going to transition this to the upper cross bar where it will have to be flush to the bar as this will form the lip the window will push up against from the inside. And it has to be flat.

This going to be a real treat trying to overlay it with the .040" aluminum outer sheeting.

I'll try to get a couple photos tomorrow. Still trying to figure out how I am going to bend the 1/8" sheet.
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Feb. 2023 at 8:38pm
WOW I need to stay in the shop and away from any where that sells retail!

Went to Salem to buy Harbor Freights cheap 18" metal brake. I figured out how to avoid bending the 1/8" panels on the lower doors by making the pieces separately and joining them together with strips of properly bend .065" aluminum which was well within the cheap Brakes capacities according to a couple reviews.

And then I got there and saw how flimsy it was and how much stouter the 30" model was so I bought it. So much for the cheapest option.

Then I went to the place I bought my rivets from and asked for a pound of them. And has to gasp a little when the guy says $45. OK so I probably don't need another 500 rivets to finish the Hard top. But I will use them on the Off Road travel trailer.

Then a trip to the gas station another $60 bucks. And to Home Depot for a sheet of the 2.7mm plywood I am using for the interior panels. Another $16

And finally a trip to Salem tool (this is a real honest quality tool store) And I bought a couple bandsaw blades and a couple small drill bits another $51


Only thing cheap was lunch and that cost twice what it should have I mean $7.69 for a Whopper sandwich GOOD GRIEF.

Got the Metal Brake setup and made a couple of the little joining strips and its going to work really well. There is just enough room on the side of the hold down plate to put a template to adjust/measure the angle of the bend. So the first one came out spot on.

SO lets see now not including small tools the Willys project has added

a Mig Welder
a 20 Ton Hydraulic press
a couple HVLP spray guns
a Metal brake
3-4 Angle grinders
a 1/2" Craftsman Torque wrench
a Beugler Pin Striper
Rivet and Rivet nut tools
A bunch of clamps of various types a few specialty tools and sockets

And a huge pile of tooling from drill bits to sand paper.




Edited by Mark W. - Yesterday at 12:02pm
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mark W. Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 hours 5 minutes ago at 2:55pm
Lower door pattern figured out I start cutting Aluminum today


I still need to make a small filler piece that will go from the bottom of the forward edge jam around the curve to the little black mark on the pattern but I will do this once the Aluminum is done to make sure I get it within my 1/8" tolerance for the weather stripping. I am going to us a ultra soft weather resistant Neoprene closed cell foam thats 1/4" thick but will compress to .040" thick. Should give a good seal.

The vertical joint that runs to the center of the body angle will not be in the Aluminum as both the pieces on either side of it are in the same plane so I'll make them from one piece.

Going to be real interesting figuring out how to do the insulation on the inside I might have to add a structural piece that runs parallel with the door opening to have something to anchor to.

Lot of planning and triple and quadruple measuring and layout its a lot of Aluminum to not get it right the first time.

I really wish I had the width in the shop to be able to completely open the doors against the body I would like to see where they are going to lay when Open. But I guess it will be what ever it is as theres no way to change it.



Edited by Mark W. - 21 hours 56 minutes ago at 3:04pm
Chug A Lug
1948 2A Body Customized
1949 3A W/S
1957 CJ5 Frame Modified
Late 50's 134L 9.25"clutch T90A D18 (1.25") D44/30 flanged E-Locker D25 5.38 Since 1962
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