1973 Wagoneer and 1980 Jayco - The perfect pair!

Discussion in 'Checkout My Rig !' started by Dr. Marneaus, Dec 2, 2012.

  1. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
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    Dec 2, 2012
    Greetings!

    I posted an intro when I joined, but here's a little more detail on my camping setup. The camper is very new to me, the truck, I've had for 3 years.

    I was originally shopping for a CJ style jeep to replace my much missed TJ that I had a few years ago. I somehow ended up buying a 1973 Wagoneer. Specs are as follows:

    360 V8 w/ Factory 4bbl intake, and Edelbrock Performer carb.
    Broken AC :-(
    GM TH400 3 speed auto, freshly rebuilt.
    Dana 20 Transfer case with a craptastic 2.03:1 low range.
    Dana30 Front Dana 44 rear end, tow packge with 3.31's
    4" Lift, 33x10.50 BFG Mudders.

    When I bought the truck, it was a good runner but developed bottom end noise. Prior to owning this truck, I had never even changed my own oil. I had put spring spacers on my TJ, but thats about as familiar as I got with mechanics.

    The best way to learn is to dive in right? We've had quite a wild ride over the last 3 years. Thousands of dollars, countless hours, and 16 stitches.
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    Ever seen the witchcraft that goes on inside a fairly simple auto tranny? That was fun...
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    Plenty of camping-esque mods too!

    Built a cargo cover and bed-lined the cargo area, theres also a 700 watt inverter in there
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    Rear auxiliary lights
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    Rewired the headlight system, installed relays, converted to H4's and ran silverstars


    So on and so forth, thats all boring though! If you want to see my full build thread, there's every single thing i've done in this thread over on jeep forum:
    http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f22/marns-73-wagoneer-thread-1058173/

    So, lets just say, I'm not afraid to get in and work on something!

    Lets just say having a 40 year old tow rig/off road truck can be very trying to ones patience...My friends always give me guff because this is a fairly common sight...
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    However with all the work i've done to it, it's been runnin' like a champ, and we took our maiden voyage with the camper, 600 miles round trip, without a single hiccup.


    We will sum up the tow rig discussion with this picture:
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  2. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

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    Dec 2, 2012
    Soooo, I did lots of camping with the truck by itself over the last few years.

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    For the last year or so I'd been casually browsing the classifieds around the web for a cheap, old pop up in good condition. I was set on something vintage, close to the age of my truck.

    Well, it fell into my lap, i heard about it from a guy i knew, and 45 minutes later I shook his hand and was the proud new owner of a 1980 Jayco. It was well used, but overall in good shape. Plenty of LITTLE things to do, but nothing major. Just my style! A diamond in the rough!! Maybe
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    Supposedly everything worked (we'll get to that later) and it was clean inside and out. Had obviously been repainted, and had obviously seen use on rural roads (the siding on the front was all mashed in and peppered from road debris). For being 30 years old, it seemed great! Canvas is good, no rips.

    I paid $750 for it.

    I have allllll the original documentation:
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    Needless to say, it didnt quite "fit" behind the jeep. We'd soon remedy that.
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    I took her home, cleaned her up real nice.
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    I picked a matching color, and went to work one morning:
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    Matching wood grain is a must!!
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    Came out pretty good!
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    But we need to do something about that angle....I didnt want a drop hitch because it rode so dang low to begin with, i wouldnt be able to drag it down anything other than a graded and maintained dirt road.

    Fixed that right quick.
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    Lifted it about 3" to 4" Still wasnt quite enough.
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    Picked up some 175/80r13's with 4 lug rims. MUCH better, that'll do until i pick up a 3" drop hitch rather than my 2"
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  3. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
    0
    Dec 2, 2012
    Just recently added a little bit of armor to the front. As mentioned, the front was all mashed in from 30 years of road debris.

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    So, after the lift and tires, we took it on it's first trip. 600 miles round trip from Las Vegas, to Ely, NV and back
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    Us:

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    P.S. I'm from New Hampshire...can you tell?
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  4. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
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    Dec 2, 2012
  5. themanfromvan

    themanfromvan Van, PA - Near The PA Wilds

    2,135
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    Jul 31, 2004
    Van, Pennsylvania
    Posts like your is why this forum needs a "LIKE" button - like Facebook. Excellent job. Thank you for sharing !!
     
  6. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
    0
    Dec 2, 2012
    Thanks so much!!!

    Honestly I'm in a bit of a hurry now, but I'll keep this thread updated as I go along on trips and making modifications!


    Here's the same link for y'all to the jeep build. If you feel like seeing more, check it out, these threads get updated regularly.
    http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f22/marns-73-wagoneer-thread-1058173/

    Here's a link to the camper build:
    http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f104/marns-1980-jayco-jayfinch6-pop-up-build-thread-1411921/

    Here's a link to my thread on Expedition Portal. This sort of covers past trips (I love telling stories) and modifications resulting from those trips, without all the nitty-gritty mechanical stuff and chit chat. More of a watered down build thread, not as technical.
    http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/83075-1973-Wagoneer-Full-Size-SHTF-and-camping-goodness!
     
  7. Twisty

    Twisty New Member

    4,425
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    Aug 24, 2008
    Hillsboro, Oregon
    You've done very well for a novice mechanic [:D]
    Nice work and happy travels!! [:)O] [;)]
     
  8. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

    1,336
    21
    May 23, 2008
    SE Wisconsin
    Very nice job. I may be a FoMoCo man but those old Jeep Wagoneers are great and look so tough.
     
  9. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

    1,336
    21
    May 23, 2008
    SE Wisconsin
    [?:~{] I mean tuff! :)
     
  10. Penny Logan

    Penny Logan The traveling teepee in her Dreamcatcher

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    Apr 21, 2011
    You are obviously very talented in repairing things and such like that, Great deal on the pup, it looks so clean.Two questions in the pixs of before you got the pup there is a tan tent with a nice awning/front porch area, any idea what kind of tent that is. Also I need to really clean the canvas area on front pop out of my hybrid and I see you used a power washer. How did you do that? Weren't you afraid to get things in the pup wet? I got some good cleaning stuff I found out about here on the forum, but would love to be able to power wash it all off when I am done. Thanks for all the pictures, videos and info. Now get to making those memories [:)C]
     
  11. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
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    Dec 2, 2012
    Ha, thanks, I promise I wont hold it against you that you're a fan of the four-letter-word!



    Thank you! And yeah, it was a pretty dern good deal, but i eventually learned that the brakes are shot, and the heater doesnt work, but thats all stuff I can do for minimal dollar cost on my own. As mentioned and evidenced above, i ain't afraid to get my hands dirty. You know, sometimes you just really gotta get in there and get the job done!
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    To answer yer questions:

    That tent with the awning is mine. Its North Pole Vacation Home. I believe it hails from Sams Club, as seen here:
    http://reviews.samsclub.com/1337/382564/reviews.htm?sort=rating&dir=asc

    I got it from a guy who's house burnt down. He sold me a gun safe, and since my buddy was a former army guy too, he's all "here take this tent its never been out of the box!!!" and he gave it to me.
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    It weighs like 65 pounds, and as the reviews say, kinda sucks in the wind. Also it requires a massive storage bag. I couldnt get it back into the one it came with, so use a giant duffle bag insted. It has to ride on a cargo rack behind my jeep.
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    You'd need to tie it down SECURELY. On that trip (we were in death valley) it blew over on us in the night. I just shove it from my sleeping bag and it popped back up, but it's flimsy. I don't like it really. It'd be nice for a day on the beach or something though.

    Also, no, i wasn't worried about stuff inside getting wet, I planned to air it out anyway, plus it was like 900 degrees that day. When power washing it, if i held my hand against the inside of the canvas, it would get wet, but that was only if I was TOUCHING the canvas. it didn't like, spray water inside.

    I use some random mexican cleaning product. Something supposedly all natural and biodegradable, good for carpets, tiles, grease removing, canvas, upholstery, bathrooms, toilets, dogs, cats, vinyl, leather, lambswool, baby hair, so on and so forth. Just one of those miracle cleaners. Seemed to work, it wasnt anything special though.

    You can see how much lighter/cleaner the area on the right is after i cleaned it.
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    There's still the standard grungy areas up next to the lift poles and stuff though, where it gets greasy.

    Also, it wa sjust a car-washing electric power washer, like, 1200 PSI. I wouldnt use a 2200 psi unit or something with a gas motor.

    Hope that helps!
     
  12. eckertsbrew

    eckertsbrew Member

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    Jan 29, 2012
    Super Cool!
    We have a very similar set up but our camper is a bit larger than yours.
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    1974 Wagoneer and an 87 Palomino TXL

    Keith
     
  13. XtraRevsSurely

    XtraRevsSurely New Member

    87
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    Jul 4, 2012
    Drool......matching paint job is my favorite part. The whole set up is totally cool that you made it your way!
     
  14. Wrenchgear

    Wrenchgear Near Elmira, Southern Ontario

    2,574
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    Aug 5, 2010
    5 Star Eagle Camper
    Good job. Love these kind of things.
     
  15. zjrog

    zjrog New Member

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    Aug 9, 2008
    Tooele, UT
    Neat setup. The trailer sure gets a vintage look with matching paint!
     
  16. PNW Family

    PNW Family New Member

    1,022
    2
    Dec 3, 2012
    Very sharp set-up! Love the old AMC-built Jeeps!
     
  17. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper New Member

    3,590
    5
    Feb 14, 2008
    Central Connecticut
    Excellent. Those were real Jeeps. Quite unlike the ones they're putting the Jeep name on today and selling for way too much money.
    That Wagoneer was an amazing vehicle and that 360 CID motor from American Motors was a beast.
    The AMC motors in Jeeps 6 cyl and V8's were the perfect match. Almost indestructible.
    Good luck and ahppy camping....
     
  18. robsonj

    robsonj Member

    55
    1
    Jan 6, 2013
    That Wagoneer rocks, what an awesome truck!
     
  19. Dr. Marneaus

    Dr. Marneaus Station Wagoneer

    36
    0
    Dec 2, 2012
    Thanks guys!

    It took the camper on a few short trips in quick succession. Everything was fine, but the inverter inside stopped working for some reason.

    None of the plugs will work, but the interior light still works. I'll add that to the list to figure out. Also, i found my brake reservoir empty, and a wet/dripy brake drum, so, looks like my wheel cylinder is leaking from the inside. And i still havent gotten the furnace running.

    So, yeah...no power, no brakes, and no heat.

    Other than that, she's been towing fine. I havent been driving the jeep much. On the last camping trip (new years eve) i popped a transmission line at the campground and dumped a few quarts of ATF everywhere, and covered the entire underside of the jeep with it. Sigh. The line had literally just slipped off. Also has a wire fall onto the exhaust manifold and melt through, thus shorting out the engine, and causing some issues while I was hauling the camper out there. Sigh.

    Fixed both of those.

    Then I had noticed my fan sounded loud lately, and one night the fan clutch seized up and started causing a ruckus. Repaired that with a spare I had in the garage.

    What gives? I drove this thing for months without any issues then a bunch of crap happens all on one trip.

    Enough about that...pics from Valley of fire state park.

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    my woman (left) and her sister waiting for breakfast:
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    Second trip. This was new years eve. It got down in the 20's that night. I ended up running my buddy heater the 2nd night. Other than that i just stayed under the covers and was 100% fine the first night (30's?). Wake up in the morning, fire up the buddy heater, took the chill off. Still beats sleeping in a tent, but like i said...no brakes no heat no power is a little disappointing.

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    From High Above the campsite...
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  20. rattlehead

    rattlehead New Member

    32
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    Oct 6, 2012
    great photos,great looking rig
     

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