Rolling Chassis Complete

It was a little over 2 years ago (2 years and 5 days ago to be exact) that I started tearing down Ike. After only a few months, the Jeep was little more than a rolling chassis, until both of the axles were dropped.

Now, after all that time, 18 months of which the axles not attached to the frame, I now have not only a rolling chassis, but something that actually resembles a Jeep. As has become custom when I’m out working in the garage, I’ll occasionally get a neighbor that pokes in their head to see the Jeep. The question usually starts with “what are you working on?” and today was “Is that a Jeep that you’re working on?” I guess that means that it is resembling more of a Jeep than a pile of parts, which is kinda cool.

Today was all about getting the chassis back to a rolling state. After draining a quart of fresh gear oil out of the front axle differential (less what leaked through the pinion seal), and after tightening the driver’s side lower king pin cap to hopefully stop a leak there, I lowered the axle from the work bench. As with the pinion seal, I also forgot just how ungainly the front axle was to move around with the cherry picker. With the differential so far off to one side, it’s nearly impossible to move easily from a single lift point. Looking back now at some pictures I took when lifting it up to the bench, I should have positioned the chain in a different way, but it’s too late now. I even have the wounds to show for it.

After getting the front end bolted nicely to the suspension and frame, I replaced the brake lines on the rear axle with the new ones I purchased and ran the frame lines as well. All that’s needed now is my new master cylinder and a few other odds and ends and I’ll be ready to complete the brake system. I’ll be tearing apart the steering box before I place my next order to make sure I don’t need to add any other small parts to the order that will further delay me getting even more done. Hopefully I’ll have the brakes and steering done soon enough to start working on the transfer case and transmission rebuild before it gets too hot to stay in the garage.

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