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Project "Free Jeep" a.k.a Project "FJ" - part #3
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(03/19/06) I finally got all the other projects done that we have been working on and I could turn my attention to the Free Jeep project. With everything done with the Orange Jeep, I had a spare 304 motor that I needed to get rid of. I tried to sell it, but with no takers in the dead of winter, I found someone that had some axles to trade as well as a few other odds and ends. I decided that the engine would be donated to the FJ project and I set out to bring up the motor and get the axles back. When I got there, it turned out that the axles had a set of rims and tires on them that had wheel lug nut locks on them, so the guy that I was trading the motor with said he wanted to remove them as well as the springs and such. I said OK and waited to hear back from him.

A few weeks went by and I finally heard from him. He said that the situation had changed and he was moving and I had to come up and get my axles. He said I could have the tires, rims, springs and steering components on the axles as long as I came and got them before he had to move. He also said he had 2 spare Jeeps that I could picks some parts from. Actually he said I could have one of the Jeeps if I took off some parts for him. I didn't have any room for another Jeep, so I said I would grab a buddy, come up and get the axles, and spend a few hours poking around for any parts I could find.
So, we headed up on 03/18/06 to get the parts before he moved out at the end of the month. My buddy Tony and I were able to get the set of axles with springs and rims/tires, a power steering setup, the power brake booster, alternator, all the brackets, the gas pedal, as well as the brake and clutch setup. We were able to snag a few other odds and ends like head light buckets and some other miscellaneous engine parts, but all in all for a few hours worth of work, it is good. It took a while to get it all, but now I have it and I can look towards starting this project. I just need to find a frame to go with all the goodies.
Upon returning home, we worked a bit on Jen's Jeep and left the parts I just got for the following day. (03/19/06) I arrived at the garage and I took apart the axle setups so I could store them better in my garage. As stated by Len, there were wheel lug nut locks on the wheels that needed to come off first. It took some doing, but with 2 pairs of vice grips and a hammer, I was able to get them to loosen up and finally come off.

Once they were off, I was able to cut the U-bolts on the axles and get the springs off the axles themselves. After that was done I was able to knock out all the old rubber in the eyeholes of the springs and sway bars. That took some doing, but all in all, the parts are separated and all stored into the garage. It took some clever finagling of the parts to fit in my small 1-car garage, but it all got in and the Jeep fit too boot. Since I took my buddy with me to help load and scavenge all the parts I got a lot more parts in a short period of time and it really didn’t cost a whole lot. I had to buy some pizza for the night before and then some coffee and lunch, but that with some diesel, I was able to get all the parts for about $50.00 all said and done into my garage. Jen helped out a lot as well and we are in good shape on this project. I could have spent all day up there picking parts, but I had other responsibilities, so I will have to look elsewhere for more parts.
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