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Tell me I'm crazy - Willy's Jeepster

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by Dennis in MA, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA Get off my lawn

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    I was surprised at how inexpensive (versus the big boats of the day) a late 40's Jeepster convertible costs, restored. (Not the CJ - the Jeepster sedan.)

    It's got that 40's look and that military look mixed in. Sorta quirky and funny and classic at the same time. I'd love it for a summertime run-around vehicle.

    PLEASE call me crazy. It isn't a this-year thing, but I'm all of a sudden interested.

    Not a huge car repair guy, but I've got a great mechanic and we aren't talking 25,000 miles per year. I can turn a wrench, but usually don't b/c of time and family constraints.
     
  2. camelotkid

    camelotkid non-believer

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    I've always liked them myself, I saw two for sale last weekend at rod run. Both were yellow for what its worth.
     

  3. PBCounty

    PBCounty

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    I've got a story about one of those cars....but it sounds too much like BS for me to tell it.
     
  4. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    The Jeepsters were produced until 1973. There are a bunch of them out there. I had one for a while. The only gripe I had was that the engine compartment was very small and I wanted to put a larger engine in it. Actually, I wanted to stick a Cummins Turbo-Diesel in it.:supergrin: Anyway, they are neat old rides and there are a lot of parts available. Eric
     
  5. gigab1te

    gigab1te

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    My brother had one years ago with a corvette engine in it. It was a fun little hot rod, and as noted above, parts are readily available. I think he wound up selling it to a high school kid. My brother and I easily did all the work on it ourselves, and we weren't particularly skilled mechanics...
     
  6. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    He must have had to cut the hell out of the firewall to get that engine in there. Eric
     
  7. LibertyPatriot

    LibertyPatriot

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    Didn't they have the same engine compartment as a CJ? Plenty of room for big V8's.
     
  8. janice6

    janice6 Silver Member

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    You reminded me.



    My mother had one in the early 60's.
     
  9. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    I had a 1967 Jeepster Commando. The hood was as long as a CJ, but the firewall encroached almost halfway into that space. An inline 4, or possible a small V-6 would have fit in that compartment, without cutting and rebuilding the firewall. Eric
     
  10. LibertyPatriot

    LibertyPatriot

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    Gotcha, I never saw under the hood I guess. I'd love to build one as a town cruiser. My wife loves the body style too. Maybe someday.
     
  11. DanaT

    DanaT Pharaoh

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    You're crazy!!!

    -Dana
     
  12. Dennis in MA

    Dennis in MA Get off my lawn

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    I see a few with small V-6's and auto trannys. That interests me.

    I like the yellow ones.

    My fear is that I just really want one for a week. Then I have no use for it. Lol
     
  13. VELO

    VELO

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    :agree:
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2012
  14. gigab1te

    gigab1te

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    He bought it with it in there. Swapping engines was (and still is) beyond our skills. I don't remember the firewall being modified, but it could have been. I'll tell you, that car could really hussle with the corvette engine!
     
  15. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    I was determined to put a inline 4 or v-6 turbo-diesel in mine. The problem is, America just has not embraced the TD experience, so there really weren't any viable options.

    So I did some research on it. I know that a lot of foreign vehicles that are sold here have TD engines in other markets. So I found the TD I wanted in the Toyota Highlander. It has a really stupid name in other markets. Hi-Lux, or something. Anyway, Japan heavily subsidizes its automotive market. One way it does this is by making the inspection and emission tests increasingly difficult to pass by 20k or 30k miles. They also have a sliding tax scale that makes the taxes on the car as much as the car is worth, by the third or fourth year.

    So, Japanese buy new cars and these surplus cars are either shipped as operational vehicles to markets, like Africa or the Caribbean, or they cut them in half and sell the half with the engine and trans on the international market. These are called, you guessed it, Half-Cuts.

    Anyway, I found I could get a Hi-Lux (Or whatever the hell they called it) half-cut, with less than 35k miles, for less than $4,000. Shipping would have been about $1,200. This would include the entire vehicle, forward of the back of the front seat. So I'd get the engines, trans, transfer case front axle assembly dash, all the wiring, including engine/trans harness, etc... In short, just about everything necessary to stick a really kick-ass V-6 TD into a '67 Jeepster. I lost interest and moved on to another project before I started this one, but maybe the info will do someone else some good. Eric
     
  16. *ASH*

    *ASH* FURBANITE

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    I REAP what YOU sow
    agree

    [​IMG]
     
  17. GIockGuy24

    GIockGuy24 Bring M&M's

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    I had a 1985 Toyota 4x4 pick-up with a turbo diesel. I bought it new at a dealer in America. They sold a non-turbo diesel in two wheel drive in 1984 and I think my engine was still available in 1986. A friend had a Chevy L.U.V. that came with an Isuzu diesel. It went went through water pumps but ran great for over 200,000 miles.
     
  18. Eric

    Eric Big Giant Head Staff Member Admin Silver Member

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    I didn't say there weren't any, but the selection sucks. The American auto market made a hard push in the Eighties, to get Americans to accept diesel and TD engines in cars. The effort fell flat on its face. Even in the truck market, it took some effort for diesel engines to gain traction. A lot of the trouble was that the engines sucked. The GM 6.2L diesel was a modified gas engine. A lot of the US diesels were. The fuel stinks, few gas stations had diesel, the engines blew black smoke everywhere, they were loud and no one knew how to work on them. When they wouldn't start, people did stupid things, like using starting fluid to start them. It was a fiasco.

    There are a huge selection of 4, 6 and 8 cylinder TD's on the world market, that we simply do not get access to here in the US. You can buy the things new in Mexico, but not in the States. Eric
     
  19. Mayhem like Me

    Mayhem like Me Semper Paratus

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    A buick V8 and TH 400 fits in the 101's the later AMC version with no cutting..
    I had a Scout II and one of my running buddies had one pretty cool the suspension was springy in his jeepster.
     
  20. paynter2

    paynter2 It ain't over Millennium Member

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    I learned to drive in a '48 Jeepster. A friend's grandpa had a cabin on the lake that I grew up on. The friend was from IN and the lake was in N WI.

    Old Gramps left the Jeepster in the garage all winter - actually, about 9 months of the year. When I was 14 my friend let me drive - he was all grown up at 16 and had his license.

    I had been driving a tractor for a couple of years, but this was really big stuff to a 14YO.

    Jeepsters are just really cool and fun as hell.