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Seabee M38A1 Build

Discussion in 'Builds and Fabricators Forum' started by tymbom, Mar 30, 2014.

  1. Oct 1, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]

    More hardtop stuff...
    Since I don't have any doors or the tailgate I mounted it down on the tub rails. I had trim the front edge over the windshield, but that part was all mangled and bent anyway.

    [​IMG]

    Because I needed to trim away the flange on the bottom of each side of the hardtop, I wanted to reinforce the edge. I welded a length of this small rectangular tube along the bottom edge, then trimmed it to look like an upside down L shape.

    [​IMG]

    Here you can see from the inside. The upper leg of the L is on top of the tub rails.

    [​IMG]

    The back part got trimmed down. You can see the button heads that I used to bolt it down with. They match the button heads on the rock rails.

    [​IMG]

    The front corner of the top needed spreading to fit down on the windshield frame. I need to take the top loose so I can weld up the gaps, I'll probably just form a new corner and put it on. There's a bit of Bondo on here for some reason...

    [​IMG]

    I rolled out some sound deadener to quiet the drumming these things are famous for. It works pretty good, the top feels solid and doesn't sound like you're riding in a oil barrel.

    [​IMG]

    Then I welded four angle iron tabs on the roof so I can secure things like the swag or surfboards, kayaks, canoes...

    So now to get to work on the doors. I have a pretty ambitious plan, but I think I can pull it off. I'm going to build two piece doors so I can have a half door. The window in the upper part might be fixed, or a two piece window that slides forward or backwards like my first jeep had.

    [​IMG]
    It's hard to see in this picture, but the door window is split with a slight overlap. You could slide the forward part back, or the back part forward depending on how you wanted. Either way was just big enough to get food from the drive thru. As long as you didn't go full fat kid and order the whole menu. That's it for now, thanks for checking it out, laters
     
  2. Dec 10, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]
    Time for a progress report... So far I've managed to get two half doors almost built and working... And I built a tailgate that I don't like and I'm already planning to throw away and start over on...

    [​IMG]
    This side is less finished. I need to round the corners on the hinges and add some 1 inch square tubing for the top part to mount to.

    [​IMG]
    And the tailgate. I made the bottom half so it can be lifted out. The fuel cans block the bottom of the opening, so if I want to be able to open the tailgate with the fuel cans mounted, I needed to make the opening smaller. Having the lower panel lift out makes it a bit easier to lift heavy things and put them in the back. So I tried to make the tailgate as light as possible by not building and frame work behind the sheet, but it was too floppy. I added some bracing, but it's just not good enough. The lower edge is all wavy and buggered up. So it's getting redone. I'll take some more detailed pics to help explain the upper door plans...
     
    fhoehle and Dne007 like this.
  3. Dec 10, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]
    So here is the inside of the door. The skin is just some 18 gauge that was bent over a 2x2 bar. That gave the panel some rigidity. Then behind the hinges is a flat bar that is 2 inch wide by 3/16ths. The 1 inch box tubing is about 8 inches long, with a cap on the bottom end, and a 3/8ths hole. The plan is to build the upper door with two posts that will slide into the 1 inch box tubing, then I can bolt it through the bottom. That way the upper part is not a floppy rattling mess...

    [​IMG]
    The door latches are a basic old school style that I found on a website that sells parts for building teardrop trailers. Thanks for checking it out. Now that it looks like we're getting some snow this weekend I'm a little more motivated to get this stuff finished up...

    Plus I have a heater waiting to be installed as well. Laters
     
  4. Dec 20, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]
    More progress...

    Here is the upper window frame before I added the outer skin.

    [​IMG]
    And the skin spot welded on, with the window opening cut out.

    [​IMG]

    Both doors are just about done to the same point. I cut the window opening with a jigsaw, so the cuts aren't perfectly straight, I probably should have clamped a straight edge on the panel, but it's nothing I can't clean up with a flat file. I have a sheet of 3/16ths polycarbonate for the windows on the way. Also, I braced up the tailgate so it's not so floppy. I'm pretty pleased with how the doors have turned out. I plan to add a couple more features that you guys will see later... Thanks again for checking it out. Laters
     
    fhoehle, Dne007, ojgrsoi and 8 others like this.
  5. Dec 21, 2021
    givemethewillys

    givemethewillys Been here since sparky ran it. 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    New Kent, VA
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    Jun 21, 2005
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    Lookin' great! Good work!
     
    tymbom likes this.
  6. Dec 24, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
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    762
    [​IMG]
    There's nothing funner than tearing the dash panel out of a built, running jeep... Yeesh. The cage had to come loose from the dash, and the the windshield needed to be folded down, so the hardtop needed to be pulled loose as well... The whole time we were doing this stuff I was kicking myself for not putting the heater in while I had the tub off and the dash off... Oh well... The heater is the shiney black box in the middle of all that mess...
     
  7. Dec 25, 2021
    compostwerks

    compostwerks Sponsor

    Canterbury, NH
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    156
     
    tymbom likes this.
  8. Dec 26, 2021
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    So here's the link for the heater. I bought two, one for me and one for my dad.

    https://www.summitracing.com/parts/sum-991108

    Depending on the depth of your guages and your speedometer, it might better to push it towards the passenger side more. M38a1s have a huge battery box in the cowl that takes up the passenger side. Mine fits perfectly between the main wiring harness and the battery box. I converted my battery box into a tool box so I don't want to loose any space. I have a cheap GPS speedo, so I don't have to worry about the speedo drive cable.

    [​IMG]
    A couple attempts to make something for the defroster hoses to connect to.
    I wanted something for the hoses to connect with so they weren't just shoved up into the dash.

    [​IMG]
    I came up with the idea to build a manifold for both hoses to connect with.

    [​IMG]
    A piece of 1x2 box tubing fits perfectly inside the dash rail under the windshield. I didn't angle the hose fittings because the windshield frame is too thick for any angle to do any good.

    [​IMG]
    Here is is in place looking up at the manifold. After putting it up there, I realized I could have angled the hose fittings towards the heater and saved the hose from being crushed.

    [​IMG]

    You can hardly tell it's there...

    [​IMG]

    Something to be aware of if anyone wants to copy my idea, the center bolt for the dash panel will go through the side of the manifold. I just marked where it was and drilled a hole to allow the bolt to pass through. Next up is a coat of paint and I'll probably bolt it in through the top of the dash with a little button head or something. Thanks for checking it out, laters
     
    fhoehle, Muzikp, Danefraz and 10 others like this.
  9. Jan 6, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
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    762
    Grrrrr don't ya hate it when you're forced to relax. The other day I was getting up and drinking coffee, making my way out to the shop. I decided to throw some hay at the horses for my wife. I felt a little pitch in my back. No worries. I've had my back go out several times. Fast forward a couple days and my back is feeling better so we took off on a walk up the hill behind the house. I ended up with a pinched nerve making the muscles in in my left leg spasm for almost 3 days before I could get some relief. 3 or 4 days later and I'm starting to walk almost normal again. That's my excuse for not having the Jeep back together again...

    [​IMG]

    In other news, the mirrors have arrived. These are a off road style of mirror that is meant for a buggy or something with a round tube to mount them.

    [​IMG]

    I plan to cut the half round tubing off and make a mount that will work on the windshield frame. That way I have a mirror with or without the doors...
    I'll be back on this shortly... Laters
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2022
  10. Jan 13, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]
    Heater plumbed and working... Here's the hoses routed out through the factory holes in the firewall. I need to support them so they're not just hanging there...

    I'm other stuff, I started painting the doors and tailgate. I'm trying to match the existing patina on the hardtop.

    [​IMG]

    The paint is flaky and revealing most of the primer underneath.

    [​IMG]

    Here's the tailgate part way through the process.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    I think it looks pretty good. The edges of the paint I did are fuzzy and not flaky. The little botom panel shows how bright and new the paint would look. I think I'll try a different technique on the front doors... Thanks for checking in, laters
     
    fhoehle, dozerjim, Danefraz and 6 others like this.
  11. Jan 18, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
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    762
    [​IMG]

    A view like this means only one thing...
    This is the north side of Mt Shasta, you have to be out on dirt roads to get this close.

    I finally made it out snow wheeling in the jeep...

    I got the windows in the doors and hardtop last night and we took it out for the maiden snow run.

    [​IMG]

    The doors aren't finished on the outside yet. I ran out time for paint.

    [​IMG]

    One of my favorite trails up the mountain has been washed out pretty badly in a few spots. We had a ton of snow around here a couple weeks ago, then it rained a bunch.

    [​IMG]

    It was fun crawling up the gullies and notches, but it was taking forever to get anywhere. So we turned around and and went back down the hill and took another road up into Military Pass.

    [​IMG]

    This pic we took after we had both been held up a couple times. I never got stuck, I just had to lower the air pressure a bit and rock it back and forth a couple times...

    [​IMG]

    My wife had a great time, as did Dahliah and Toby Dog... The heater did pretty good. There's some wind noise around the front of the windshield and doors that need attention, but it was a successfull trip. I'll hafta update the door build later. Thanks for checking it out. Laters
     
    Dave Deyton, fhoehle, Muzikp and 11 others like this.
  12. Jan 26, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
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    762
    Working on some things...

    [​IMG]

    The cab corners are still a bit snaggletoothed after I made some relief cuts to fit the windshield frame. While driving at speeds above 45 miles per hour, there is a lot of wind noise coming from this area.

    [​IMG]

    Here's the semi finished result. The corners have been finished and painted, but the black paint doesn't make a good picture. I might extend the drip rail forward. I need to add some weatherstripping on the inside, but I can tell a difference and it it looks tons better.

    [​IMG]

    The inside of the doors got some footman loops welded on for the tacticool storage bags.

    [​IMG]

    These bags are just cheapo's from the Surplus store in Medford Oregon, I think they cost 8 buxs each... But they're handy for tossing stuff in.

    [​IMG]

    I also stumbled across a perfect spot for the door tops when I'm out wheeling. I honestly didn't plan this from the beginning, but the door top fits perfectly in the back. I'll probably make a good time down point and use a rachet strap, but a Bungie cord works for now. I still need to add the weatherstripping/sealing stuff to the door tops, around the windows, but that will come after I finish painting everything... One other thing I've decided to do is add a add-a-leaf to the rear springs to help deal with the additional load of the hardtop and doors. With all three of us and the dog in the jeep, it says a bit and blows right through the travel and bottoms out.
    I have some vacation coming up so hopefully I can get a bunch of this done and still have time to go out and play some more. Thanks for checking it out, laters
     
    ojgrsoi, Muzikp, Dne007 and 7 others like this.
  13. Jan 27, 2022
    givemethewillys

    givemethewillys Been here since sparky ran it. 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    New Kent, VA
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    Dude, your jeep is so bad@$$, just sayin'. Love the spousal support too, definite keeper!
     
    tymbom likes this.
  14. Jan 28, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
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    Thanks! I'm looking forward to less working and building and more wheeling trips!
    Honestly I couldn't be where I'm at today if it wasn't for my wife...
     
    givemethewillys and Lockman like this.
  15. Feb 2, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]

    I managed to build a simple mount for the mirrors and get those mounted up to the doors. I figured if the mirror can move back and forth it'll save the doors from getting mangled.

    I made a post in the Trail Rides section about this weekend, Feb 5th, 6th and 7th, I'll be down at the Chappie-Shasta OHV area doing some camping and wheeling. Anyone is welcome to join us and come wheeling or just stop by and say hi. The weather looks like it's gonna be nice.
     
    47v6, dozerjim, ITLKSEZ and 3 others like this.
  16. Feb 2, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2012
    Messages:
    762
    [​IMG]
    Getting a few things finished up before this weekend... I had a pair of Rancho 2.5in lift springs from when I was mocking up my suspension. I cut the eyes off and added them to the rear spring pack in between the 2nd and 3rd leaves. All it took was some time and longer spring center pin. A quick test drive through a convenient ditch in the field and up the hill and its so much better. The body doesn't sway as much and suspension is just a bit higher. Should be perfect.
     
    fhoehle, ITLKSEZ, capt.joe and 4 others like this.
  17. Feb 9, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
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    As I promised in the trip report for Chappie-Shasta, I would show the repairs back here. Here is the u-bolt plate that had exploded on Sunday afternoon. The sides are angle iron welded to a wide piece of strap. Originally it was just like this one, but the u-bolts pulled the flat part with the holes up and put a good stress on them. Eventually the welds failed and it broke.

    [​IMG]
    So I started by repairing the old one by welding new angle on. I veed the parts out and burned them in a lot better.

    [​IMG]
    Then I added some angle reinforcement on each side. I wanted to keep the ends open in case I need to use a wrench to remove the u-bolt nuts like I did Sunday in camp. Hopefully the angled parts will keep the u-bolts from pulling and bending.

    [​IMG]
    I also firmed up the front suspension a bit. My buddy Kenny had some Rancho 4in lift rear YJ springs that he didn't need. I used the bottom 3 leaves of those springs with the top 3 leaves of my 2.5in lift springs. This made the front sit an inch or so higher, and rides a bit firmer. I also put the longer bumpstop back in the front.

    [​IMG]
    A quick drive up the hill and back then to the convienent ditch for a flex test. Before I did the add a leaf in the back and this latest mod, the rear tire would stuff hard in the fender, and the front tires would lift the hood and unlatch the hood latches.

    [​IMG]

    Much better... That's a 38 inch tire stuffed to the bottom of the stock inner fenders in the back.

    [​IMG]

    The front is just right. It's just a bit firmer, but not bad. I'm ready to go back down to Chappie-Shasta and play in the rock garden some more... if any of you guys are passing through or live down near there and want to check it out, let me know. I'll see what I can do. Laters
     
    fhoehle, 47v6, Dne007 and 3 others like this.
  18. Feb 10, 2022
    Fireball

    Fireball Well-Known Member 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Pullman, WA
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    Man your Jeep is cool.

    Looking at your mount, you may want to weld a strap over the top of it so that piece that broke off is fully captured. Something like this:
    [​IMG]
     
    ojgrsoi, tymbom and givemethewillys like this.
  19. Feb 10, 2022
    tymbom

    tymbom Member

    Siskiyou Co.
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    Yeah... I thought about that later... I'll keep an eye on them and probably do that the next time it's apart. Thanks for the compliment. I think it means more when a fellow jeepers says something nice...
     
  20. Feb 10, 2022
    givemethewillys

    givemethewillys Been here since sparky ran it. 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    New Kent, VA
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    Well, I wasn't going to sat anything nice, but I just couldn't help it :D I can't believe you were able to stuff 38's in there, supposedly "it couldn't be done" and was "goofy". I think your jeep looks wicked sharp, so I must be goofy too.
     
    tymbom likes this.
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