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Old 04-22-2016, 02:58 PM
treeturner1962 treeturner1962 is offline
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Join Date: Nov 28, 2014
Location: Maine
Posts: 28
Full Restoration words of Wisdom....

I just wanted to share some things I have learned as I continue with my full restoration of my 1965 Jeep Gladiator.
I found my Jeep Gladiator in the Oregon Desert abandoned and not running for at least 15 years. The body was in excellent shape but nothing else was. When I hauled it home, the owner ( who was not the actual owner as he had passed away 15 years ago) just said to me .... "she needs a little TLC and she'll be fine". Yeah ... Right, this thing was a complete basket case. The engine started and things worked but I knew to really have a reliable daily driver, I would have to break the gladiator down any really go through the thing. I am having a blast, finding the history of the gladiator as I take it apart and dissect it. FOR those who have gone there... here is what I have learned>>>>>

1) Approach a restoration like a TEST PILOT approaches a new aircraft.... ASSUME NOTHING WORKS and be surprised when it does.

2) Its amazing how so many things with wiring were 'RIGGED" to just temporarily fix a problem instead of spending money the first time to fix it right.

3) Always replace your tires... you don't know the history

4) Replace Hoses/Belts/ Fluids/ and flush and rebuild the radiator... no matter what the prior owner told you LOL

5) so many things are easy fixes ( like cleaning off starter connections) but I always enjoyed diving in and going through an accessory completely... I learned a lot more and I gained confidence in the accessory.

6) MY engine was surprisingly strong but I found the following weak and in need of a rebuild>>>>> 1) Starter
2) Water pump
3) radiator
4) Alternator ( just did it anyeay)
5) carburetor ( leaking gaskets)
6) Battery was bad ( PO just bud an incorrect battery in to start the engine.
7) Lots of seals in the vigilante were leaking... easy to fix but shows the engine and transmission were never really started much... dried out seals when I drove around were common place.

8) When I took apart the dash and removed it to paint it... I found some neat HISTORY ... 2 Beautiful Obsidian rocks ( Volcanic glass), a 29 cent bic Stick banana pen, and a early 70's "petrified" juicy fruit GUM still in the original wrapper LOL. I found some old receipts for oil filters at $2.00 and oil was .69 per quart.
The venting system was clogged with old leaves dirt and debris.. the fan worked but I am glad I never tested it when it was all hooked up... would have sucked in lots of debris. I am glad I took the time to clean it all out .... no telling what you will find.
9) I really enjoyed working on things, I found I was good at dismantling, not so good at rebuilding things without a lot of help from the experts, but pretty good at installing the fixed items.
10) TAKE TONS OF PICTURES... so much easier to figure out how to put stuff back together
11) Restoring a nice piece of HISTORY is worth the money to me. I would never get the money out of what I have invested in the truck so far, but I am having a blast doing it. We only live once.
12) My son.... was indifferent at first at 18 years old... but now has gained a new respect for old vehicles after watching the process. A 3 speed shift on the steering column and manual windows are completely foreign to him

If anybody would like to add their words of wisdom or share any lessons and great experiences/ nightmares LOL.....please have at it.

JOhn
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  #2  
Old 04-23-2016, 10:47 AM
bufurd's Avatar
bufurd bufurd is offline
327 Rambler
 
Join Date: Apr 13, 2008
Location: ashland wi.
Posts: 547
I think I read it on here, "perfection can inhibit progress" or something like that. It can also kill a project, seen many not completed because trying to go too far with it. And if perfection is achieved they were scared to drive it. Would like to see some pics of what Ya got there, good luck and enjoy. My 2 cents would be to get it driving, fix what it needs as Ya go along, you're never really gonna be done tinkering with it anyway.
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  #3  
Old 04-23-2016, 11:46 AM
joe joe is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 28, 2000
Location: PNWet, USA
Posts: 22,373
Quote:
Originally Posted by bufurd
I think I read it on here, "perfection can inhibit progress" or something like that. It can also kill a project, seen many not completed because trying to go too far with it. And if perfection is achieved they were scared to drive it. Would like to see some pics of what Ya got there, good luck and enjoy. My 2 cents would be to get it driving, fix what it needs as Ya go along, you're never really gonna be done tinkering with it anyway.
I'm with buford. For a daily driver project car don't get all anal "assuming everything is bad". It won't be.... BUT... bringing any 50 year old car that hasn't run in 15 years to reliable daily driver status is going to be a major chore. Make it as easy on yourself and money/time budget as possible. Step one: quit dismantling stuff till you need too! Two: get it running and safe. Three: fix stuff as needed. you're not going to know "what" really needs fixing till you've been driving it awhile. Just cause it's old don't mean it's broken or worn out. The bad stuff will pop up soon enough. Running and safe is the priority. Screw the cosmetics and fluff till after it's on the road. Fun era to work on. But beware of just dismantling stuff cause you can. That's how folks end up end with non-running garage art.
Buy the Kaiser factory TSM, aka factory Shop Manual. (part number SM 1019-R2).
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Old 04-23-2016, 06:32 PM
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timwiller timwiller is offline
232 I6
 
Join Date: May 15, 2014
Location: Fordland, MO. near Springfield
Posts: 51
restore

X3...general rule of thumb...when you fix something there will be at least two more things in the same area that need attention..Ha! stay focused and prioritize. think outside the box too. i recently put a slightly modified headlight switch harness connector from a '90s cherokee in mine for example.
if you ever find one in a salvage yard, if you can swing it, just buy the whole thing. anything you don't need someone else will.
the forums are awesome for info and Google also has helped me many times.
keep us posted. have fun!
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Old 04-24-2016, 12:50 PM
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WHSII WHSII is offline
Hack-Priss
 
Join Date: Feb 06, 2010
Location: Frankfort, KY
Posts: 1,804
Full Restoration...

That would be totally disassembling everything, cleaning, repainting everything, replacing any and all seals and bearings, etc, etc. In other words, remove every bolt in the Jeep.

Check out the picture link in my signature and you can see my rig from start to finish. Almost four years working on something almost every day. Build thread is also included...

Hardest part, starting. I fretted for a week, once I found a good frame that was needed for my project. I knew that the majority of restoration projects start with great enthusiasm, and end with a parts sale...

When I finally decided to "dive in" and bought the parts truck, I promised myself that I would do something everyday to the project.

Overall in the three years, nine months, and nine days, from the time I took out the first bolt, to the time I installed the last bolt, I was overwhelmed five or six times as to wanting to not work on it. I kept remembering my "promise" so I would continue.

I probably missed working fifty days during the time frame, because of vacations, sickness, and commitments, about five days because I didn't want to... The key is to do something everyday.

Looking back at the ordeal, it was the hardest, most intense, biggest learning experience that I had ever taken on.

To answer the many many questions from people that see it, to get the "thumbs up" from old gents, and young pickup truck drivers, and young ladies in SUV's, to drive it daily, "PRICELESS"

Renovating it, going through it to keep it running, is very satisfying, I am doing that to an 87 Grand.

Restoring is a whole other level, years of work, $$$, and sweat and blood, without being able to drive it.

Good luck to you, which ever path you take, I hope you will see it through.
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  #6  
Old 04-24-2016, 01:51 PM
joe joe is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 28, 2000
Location: PNWet, USA
Posts: 22,373
If you're really going FULL RESTO rather than fixing up to DD status. I highly suggest a boat load of ziplock bags, sharpie and tape you can write on. Oh and a digital camera. Take lotsa pics of assemblies, wiring connections/routing etc. Then bag-n-tag everything. Yup even bolts and screws. If a part is mounted with various threads, length screws draw a mini diagram and put it into the bag with the part. I also keep a notebook with lotsa 'notes to self' info. Yeah it seems a bit anal now but a year or two later when you finally get around to putting it all back together you'll be really glad you made the effort.
Did I previously mention, "buy the factory shop manual" and if possible also the factory parts manual. The blow-ups in the PM are very handy at assembly time..
Have fun.
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Old 04-24-2016, 05:30 PM
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bkilby bkilby is online now
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Jan 10, 2016
Location: Burbank Ca.
Posts: 861
Quote:
Originally Posted by treeturner1962
2) Its amazing how so many things with wiring were 'RIGGED" to just temporarily fix a problem instead of spending money the first time to fix it right.

3) Always replace your tires... you don't know the history

4) Replace Hoses/Belts/ Fluids/ and flush and rebuild the radiator... no matter what the prior owner told you LOL

9) I really enjoyed working on things, I found I was good at dismantling, not so good at rebuilding things without a lot of help from the experts, but pretty good at installing the fixed items.
10) TAKE TONS OF PICTURES... so much easier to figure out how to put stuff back together
11) Restoring a nice piece of HISTORY is worth the money to me. I would never get the money out of what I have invested in the truck so far, but I am having a blast doing it. We only live once.
JOhn

Being that I'm in the middle of a "restore", I can relate to those above. I have a build thread here and I guess I should have called it "Revived" instead of "Restore". Reason being, I'm not trying to reuse factory hardware etc. On some stuff yeah, but not everything. I have bins of new hardware at the shop so I'm using new stuff when needed. I'm not trying to keep things "factory". I'm changing stuff and doing it the way I want it done.

But anyhow, I know what you're saying. I've never driven this Jeep but took it down to bare frame, body etc. Well, I never removed the doors so those bolts are safe....for now. lol. I had no idea what circuits worked, which didn't but doesn't matter, it's all getting new wiring anyhow. If something doesn't work (switch, blower motor etc) it'll get replaced as we come across it.

I wonder how long the tcase and axles would last if I dropped in my Gen3 426 Hemi....
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  #8  
Old 04-26-2016, 05:37 AM
threepiece threepiece is offline
350 Buick
 
Join Date: Sep 17, 2005
Location: Farmington Hills Mi.
Posts: 1,198
Not all projects end up as "basket cases". Some projects end with fine looking, dependable vehicles that are fun to drive and offer a sence of learning and empowerment for the doer.
After restoring a 1978 Cherokee, 1982 Wagoneer and a 1976 J20 I am currently working on my fourth FSJ full restoration. You can see the progress in the link below. I can wait to finish this one to start on my next one.
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  #9  
Old 04-26-2016, 05:52 AM
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Strode Strode is offline
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Join Date: Nov 08, 2011
Location: Littleton, Co
Posts: 2,289
2 words:

Mission Creep
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