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Thursday, March 31, 2011

more dash stuff

This is the dash control switches. They all work. Maybe I can install a nitrous button in there somewhere.

Heres the other side of the starter switch, in a little better shape.

Under dash

Here's some interesting duct tape wiring that goes to ??? and what the heck is the switch that's connected to the upper gas pedal? It would only come on at full throttle.

Heres a knob that turns like a rheostat but seems to do nothing. Looks stock.

**update on this... This is a ceramic rheostat for the dash panel and guage
lights. It's so archaic, I think Edison made it***

Fusebox? Wee don need no stinkin fuse box!
The fuse holders in the wiring harness ARE the fusebox.
Here is the reason for the push button starter. The power wire to the switch is toast. Another is cut. I need a wiring diagram.

The engine bay at a glance

A little wiring investigation

I ought to call this project " American  Idle" cause I work on it just to get away from the damn tv singing competition on weeknights.
I removed the hood to make life a little easier.  Although someone was nice enough to put a spring over on it like I would have done,  it makes the fenders a stretch even at 6'-1".
With no engine to impede progress, I got a battery charger set at 12 A and started checking the wiring.  headlights- check.
turn signals-check.  side markers-check.  I even got one of the brake lights to light up somewhere along the way.
The dash has one light that works,  The blower works on both speeds, wipers work on both speeds although if you push the switch just so it acts like intermittent wipers.  It could be a good thing - I don't know if its stock but it may be.

Tracing the wiring harness back into the cab from the firewall I came across THE BUTTON mounted in the dash.  I had no idea what or why it was there.  It had 2 pair phone wiring coupled up and running thru the firewall.
I traced it to the main loom which had been re-wrapped,  the wires terminated at the starter solenoid wires.  It turns out this was the kids key.  Necessity IS the mother of inventions.

This is the main loom.  Some people call this duct tape- but the enterprising youth saw that it kept wire from shorting out and saw that this was good. NASCAR uses it to repair vehicles so they can go fast.  Maybe 40 more rolls and this thing will fly.
 Another example of the many uses of masking tape.

My neighbors love me

The commando came home and promptly parked in the driveway on the trailer for about 3 days before I could start getting to it.

After the last project a lot of neighbors drove by and just shook their heads.

I finally got some muscle and a truck to move the trailer so it can go into the garage for diagnosis.

This is THE most fuel efficient 4x4 on the face of the earth right now.

Lookie what I found.

Egad!  Am I a magnet for wanton, abused 4x4's or what?
Another 1973 (the best 4x4s were in the '70s btw imho) vehicle drifted into my life after going thru months of having no projects, like:

 While eating chinese food the wife was convinced by a couple simple pieces of paper.
These were almost a month apart at different restaraunts.

The wife said that four wheels is not a" fun" investment.
So after taking her statement into careful consideration I found this:

Its a '73 Jeep commando for those that have never seen or heard of one.  The commandos were only made for a few years and only 2 of the years in this particular front clip and funky tailgate.  It was supposed to help Jeep turn the tides against Fords early bronco  and Internationals scout 800s and new scout II which were selling like hotcakes at the time. The commandos were discontinued after this year for the full size jeeps ( Cherokee, wagoneer, & j trucks )
 The stock chassis is a CJ-6 with a full boxed frame up to just past the rear axle.  Its stout.
  Dana 30 w drums and passenger side drop up front (boo), Dana 44 30 spline in back (yay). 
It originally had a 232 c.i. (sibling of 258) AMC I-6 , AMC version of the TH400, and a Dana 20 transfer case.
I received it with NO engine, and transfer case and tranny seperate.  It still has the original light blue front and rear seats in decent/ useable condition, front floor mounted lap belts, and 4 round tires.  That's a good start in my book.

A few links I came across after purchasing:
Heres the craigslist picture that was on the ad:

BIG NOTE: some of the stuff I do is by the book, some stuff requires
additional engineering to make it safe and sturdy enough.
If you don't know what a lugnut or ujoint is, get help.
If you have no fabrication skills, get professional help before attempting any of this
stuff.  A poor weld or design can leave you at best stranded, and at worst you and or others dead.