flying aardvark

1965 Jeep J2000

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Sometime in the 70's my grandfather bought this '65 J2000. It was his DD for 30 years until around '04 when he took it off the road. Several years ago he talked about maybe selling it, or give it to me. I didn't even have to think twice, it had to be mine.


One of the main reasons my grandfather took the Jeep off the road was due to the steering, the splines were loose on the input of the steering box. It had manual steering with a closed knuckle D44, and manual brakes. Needless to say, it was unsafe to drive.


A couple years ago I started working on it, I swapped in a D60 rear to replace the D53. I also removed the front axle & springs. I came up with a design for the front spring hanger, but never installed it. I got busy with buying a house, and everything else, so it sat.


Two weeks ago my grandfather was given 6 months to live- lung & liver cancer. I want nothing more than to take him for a ride in his old Jeep.


I decided to take this week off from work, to work on the Jeep and help my grandmother out. I traveled here from Syracuse to Corinth, NY yesterday (Monday), with all the tools i could think of, and a new front & rear axle, and some other parts. I also have my SAS'ed 89 Toyota pickup here for parts.


The plan for this week:

-85 Ford D60, narrowed 4", DRW hubs

-03 Chevy 14B, discs

-Power steering, power brakes


The original 230 cu. in. Tornado straight-six and transmission/t-case will be reused for now. I'd like to put in a 4BT at some point.


The body is extremely rough, but the frame is solid. I will work on the bodywork eventually, but not right now. I just want to get it running & driving again.


Day 1- unloaded axles, springs, other parts, & tools. Dragged Jeep up onto trailer to bring into the driveway to work on it. Took some measurements & figured out spring hanger location.


Tomorrow I hope to get the spring hanger in, springs and axle in, and start planning the steering box mount.


pics to follow.

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Day 1 pics:

Dragged the Jeep up onto the trailer and brought it out to the driveway to begin work.



85 Ford D60 narrowed 4", 03 14b



Front spring hanger crossmember I started building 2 years ago, now ready to go in



DS frame rail. This side was preserved a bit better due to a leaking plow pump. The other side is a bit crustier.


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Day 2, didn't get as much done as I hoped. I did a bunch of running around, got paperwork straightened out at the DMV, went to Haun for some flux core. Then the nurse was here, and I had to go pick up some prescriptions. Then I had to end early to go have dinner at my mother's.


The house does not have a 220V circuit easily accessible, so I tried using their generator which is 7kW/12.5kW. I had to make an adaptor cord to go from the twist-lok to the welder style plug but the generator worked beautifully to power my Lincoln 180 on the highest setting.I was able to weld in the front crossmember and the pass side frame plate.


Hoping to get a solid day in tomorrow.

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Nice job James! Wish I was there to help... Couldn't get the days off with short notice. If you need help this weekend let me know. If you need any axle pieces/parts to complete them let me know too.


I'm sorry to hear about your gramp, but you are doing an awesome thing!

Edited by HEEPJEEP

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Neat project, and for a good reason!

I guess the ross-style steering gear is a suprise to me. for whatever reason, I always think of Jtrucks as having a saginaw style box out front.

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Day 3

Test fitting springs



Axle temporarily in place



Starting on the drivers frame plate, testing fitment of PS box



BTF steering arm installed



Day 4


Frame plate fully welded, sleeved for PS box





Day 5, (no pics)

built shackle hangers and got them installed

installed u-bolts

installed front wheels


Day 6, securing the trailer to head back to Syracuse.




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Just a quick update...


Been really busy trying to patch up a house project. I had to replace a section of sill on the front of the house, which turned into basically tearing all the siding off from the ground up to the roof, reframing around windows, adding some additional frame-work, insulating, new sheathing, rigid foam on the outside, and then replacing the siding. Obviously need to get it weather tight before too long.


I built a roof overhang on the front of my shed so I have a place out of the rain to at least get half a vehicle under.


Last night I got the Jeep off the trailer and the front end up under the roof of the shed to get back to working on it. Took a couple hours as the Jeep does not have steering or brakes so it was fun.


I tried to get it started again, but it seems to not be getting fuel. I was able to get it to fire by pouring a small amount of gas in the carb. I took the fuel pump off and the rubber valves inside seem to be not closing and the diaphram is a little rotted. Found a new Omix-Ada pump on Amazon for $62 so I ordered that. Hopefully that will solve that issue.


Haven't heard back from Trail Worth Fab regarding the tires, even though I sent the payment in last week. Hoping those show up soon.


Hopefully more to come soon.

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Last Sunday I went out and visited my grandparents for the afternoon. In the three weeks since I had been there last, it was quite obvious that he had gone down hill even further, to the point where he is not eating much :(


While I was out there I found a spare fuel pump and hoped that maybe that would solve the non-running issue, but it turned out to be bad as well. Tuesday I got the new pump in the mail, and got it installed on Wednesday. Runs good now!


Picked up the rims and tires from the shipping terminal on Thursday. Man they are heavy with the rubber run-flats installed. Gonna be a big biatch with the new tires installed :maine:


Went to the pick-n-pull on Thursday and got a Toyota steering column and shaft. Got an adapter plate to go from Jeep to Toyota made up tonight, still just need to shorten the shaft. Hopefully will have it all done tomorrow.



Wheels (Thanks Trailworth Fab!)




Adapter plate to go from the Jeep rag-joint to the Toyota u-joint





Modified Toyota steering shaft. Needs to be shortened a bit and then will be ready to go


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