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Old 16th January 2009, 11:26   #31
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I must mention here about our (me and wife) visit to mayapuri one Sunday in between. Most of the shops were closed (I didnít know that) but still it was an awesome feeling to see heaps of jeeps, gypsies and debries of various types of car and truck parts all around for the 1st time. To add to the thrill, it started raining cats and dogs and continued for hours. The entire area turned into a mud+oil+grease mess! I can vividly remember when for the 1st time I saw a rusted Kaiser jeep parked at one of the interior side while walking through the mud and water! There were a couple of other uniquely designed vehicles done in typical mayapuri way, one of which was an extended hardtop gypsy (the rear part was way too long) loaded with AC and surprisingly retaining the 4x4, with lots of fabricated parts here and there to give a feeling somewhat like a Ford Endeavour!

Anyways, searching more on the jeep genre, gradually I came to know about jeepthrills and started going through the old messages there, to get acquainted to someone in Delhi. Then one day I found couple of mails from a guy who also seemed to be in a similar position as mine, asking help to find out a jeep. And in the replies I saw a person named Jasvinder (henceforth will be referred to as ĎJí), who was asking for more details from the guy regarding the budget so that he could help him in locating one. Bingo, I thought, let me shoot a mail to him for a similar help and wrote a long one with all details and my cell number at the end. Around 15 minutes later, there was a call in my mobile and the voice said ďHi, this is Jasvinder this side; so you seem to be interested in jeeps?Ē

I couldnít believe that I would get such a prompt reply; he talked to me for around 45 minutes when I came to know about various nitigrities of jeeps and also about another jeep messiah, Mandeep (henceforth will be referred to as ĎMí). I would like to mention here that these two amazing people [M&J] have been my jeep mentors since then and I wouldnít have gone for a jeep all myself, had they not been around. I donít have any words to thank you guys.

Now knowing about my requirements, he advised me to go for a petrol jeep, something I wasnít very aware of (later on Jammy [MM440] started a really informative thread on this). He suggested me to go for a 3b or a 440. CJ3b, the name I definitely heard, but 440?? I didnít have any idea what was that (as many of you have rightly pointed, not much of info are available on this). Yeah, came to know that this is nothing but the petrol avatar of 540, however much much rarer than its diesel counterpart. At the end of the discussion, I was convinced petrol jeep is what I should go for (this is not to fuel any debate regarding petro vs diesel, just that I really liked the logics he put forward). He told that he would keep an eye and inform me about any potential buy. I didnít have any words to thank him and he mentioned that all of it was only for jeepís sake and that when he was new into the field, he also got the same kind of support from Mandeep.
So thatís how the jeep legacy goes on, I told to myself. For the 1st time in real life I could get some hint how closely bonded the jeepers could be to the feel of this machine. In the next few weeks, he informed me about couple of models, and also about a modified CJ7 having a rich history behind. This belonged to none other but M. I was amazed when I saw the pics of this jeep for the 1st time. Here are few snaps of that jeep (with your permission, the fellow owner, sir. Hope you wonít mind):
The story of my jeep: MM 440-b1.jpg

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Managed to meet both of them next week and had a glimpse on the blue jeep in real life. Man, what a piece was that! I remember that day when I was finally returning, I kept on staring at the jeep till it was out of sight. (Even now, whenever I have a look at this jeep, I get goose bumps!) Though this was a prized possession, the owner, M, was in a hesitant mood to sale it and clearly mentioned me about the various aspects of this jeep. It was very difficult for me to resist the temptation, but very soon I realized, because of technical incompetency, a novice like me will not be able to handle this monster properly.
Meanwhile, I also had my own search going in the various sites (in his jeep thread, kittigadu has a really good compilation of the sites where you can venture to spot a good piece). But nowhere had I seen listing of any 440, even not a 2wd, not a single one in any one of these sites; though there were a number of 540s available. I was in doubt whether at all we will be able to get hold of any 440! Then one day, as good luck would have it, I got to know that while moving in jeep dens, quite accidentally, M&J spotted a 440! To end the speculations here is the 1st snap of the vehicle:
The story of my jeep: MM 440-4401.jpg

To be continued.....
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Old 16th January 2009, 11:27   #32
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Congrats Kandisa.

Looking forward to seeing the pics.

Cheers !!!!!!!
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Old 16th January 2009, 11:38   #33
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Well Somen,

I agree with the goose bumps part. Even share the same symptoms with you.

This Jeep is a real unique one. The power, the sound of the engine, everything is so mesmerizing.

And yes, this is the same jeep (440) that I mentioned I drove in Rajasthan. I now recognize it. The most noticeable difference are the Bumpers.

I knew this Jeep but never knew its called an MM440.

Great writeup! You now have made the wait more difficult!

Cheers!

Last edited by vinayrathore : 16th January 2009 at 11:39.
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Old 16th January 2009, 11:39   #34
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Thanks for shifting gears buddycheers:. Now we have a perspective of what you have begun with. M&J and Vaibhav are the jeep gurus for NCR jeepers (NIOC). I am quite excited about what an excellent jeep this 440 is going to become.

P.S. - I see Vaibhav's gypsy behind Mandeep's 540 in the first pic!
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Old 16th January 2009, 16:49   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vinayrathore View Post
..I agree with the goose bumps part. Even share the same symptoms with you.This Jeep is a real unique one. The power, the sound of the engine, everything is so mesmerizing.
....Great writeup! You now have made the wait more difficult!
Thanks Vinay and Randeep. Yeah vinay, can't agree more with you on the blue jeep. Will definitely post more pics soon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoSlow View Post
..Thanks for shifting gears buddycheers:. Now we have a perspective of what you have begun with. M&J and Vaibhav are the jeep gurus for NCR jeepers (NIOC). I am quite excited about what an excellent jeep this 440 is going to become.
P.S. - I see Vaibhav's gypsy behind Mandeep's 540 in the first pic!
Thanks. Well you are advising to change such complicated gears to someone, who has hardly any experience with handling the 4wd! Yeah the whole idea was to share the starting point. And i do agree the trio are the practical gurus for us here at NIOC. The gypsy indeed is the same red one as you identified.
-regards,
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Old 16th January 2009, 20:54   #36
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Kandisa,
memories came back as i read your posts.
Quote:
I kept on staring at the jeep till it was out of sight
Iam sure most of us jeepers would do even now.

Regards
Krishna.
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Old 16th January 2009, 21:24   #37
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Wow. This is seriously memorable. And surprising is you remember all of it so well. Great details. Waiting for more
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Old 16th January 2009, 22:50   #38
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looks like that blue jeep is a proper 4x4 off road vehicle, built only for that purpose and not bling bling!

cheers:
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Old 17th January 2009, 16:32   #39
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@ kandisa
Can you please pm me Mandeep's no. I met him and his blue monster in one of OTR's but forgot to take his contact no. I want to talk to him about some petrol engine technical queries.

regards
vishwas
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Old 19th January 2009, 09:53   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kittigadu View Post
Kandisa,memories came back as i read your posts...Iam sure most of us jeepers would do even now.
Yes, this is strange kind of realization i was never habituated with. Wouldn't be surprised even if a veteran jeeper has the same experience even now!
Quote:
Originally Posted by maddy42 View Post
Wow. This is seriously memorable. And surprising is you remember all of it so well. Great details.
Well maddy, this is one episode I 'll probably never forget in life. The very idea of getting an old vehicle of this type and reverting it back to glory, is way too mesmerizing. More so, when one is completely new and goes through so many events!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Parm View Post
looks like that blue jeep is a proper 4x4 off road vehicle, built only for that purpose and not bling bling
Yes this is a no-nonsense jeep. Highly reliable and highly capable in the hands of an experienced jeeper. Apart from normal OTRs, this jeep has gone to various long-distance difficult terrains including hills, snows. In a recent event in Jaipur, it has even towed a GPW all the way from Delhi with the speed sometimes in 90-100 km/hr in the highway! And not to mention it does have an immense visual appeal.

Sorry folks for being out of the 'netduniya' in the weekends. Will soon post the next part.
-Regards,
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Old 19th January 2009, 12:21   #41
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This jeep belonged to a very familiar establishment in Delhi and was sparingly used mostly within the boundary of its arena. M&J actually thought to get this jeep for them because it was in a very good condition and had a legal Delhi registration. But anyway since I came into the picture, they advised me this could be an appropriate one for me and from the descriptions it seemed to be the best bet to convert into a vehicle I had in mind. Finally one day I went to their place to see it physically (I remember the day very vividly because very same day serial blasts ripped through Delhi!). One look and I fell in love with the machine. A clean 4x4 petrol 440 with the engine in start condition, having around 38k in the odo! Further, unlike the normal auctioned jeeps, which have only vouchers, this one had an RC!! By that time, I had idea about the hassles and complications in registering these types of vehicles, particularly the ex-army ones, for a person not originally from NCR! So a Delhi registered jeep with RC was a boon. M&J introduced me through some of the minute details which I wasnít familiar with. Then came the word I was waiting for: they assured that they would make sure to restore it to a reliable and rugged piece. So a jeep of my liking with valid papers, to be restored properly under supervision of people who know petrol jeeps very well; I couldnít have asked for more. Decided to go for this one then and there. Some more snaps of the machine after it was picked up:

The story of my jeep: MM 440-4402.jpg

The story of my jeep: MM 440-4403.jpg

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Now since this was an original 440, as gotzuk already mentioned it came with the stock hurricane engine with KMT90 4-speed gear, and dual-lever 4x4 system. There is nothing to say about the performance of this legendary engine, which is there in 3b. Though an old engine, the parts and spares are available with little pain; but it is very difficult to find out a mechanic who understands and able to repair this. Also its really low on mileage. Now, since my aim was to use the jeep much more regularly rather than OTR-exclusive purpose, and the estimated monthly running is around 600 km, the mileage part was definitely a big concern for a poor guy like me. Even more concern was the availability of a mechanic in case of any problem outside noida. So we thought to make some key modifications to make it a more reliable jeep, easily serviceable anywhere with an engine not demanding too much on the fuel. The obvious best option in the petrol category was the Isuzu. Highly refined, very much in use today, no problems absolutely in getting spares or support, Isuzu was decided as the next heart for the 440. Apart from the engine, another modification I really needed to explore was to change the gear set-up from 4-speed to 5-speed. Needless to mention, the former is pretty painful in terms of shift quality even in a moderate journey! However in no way I wanted to sacrifice the 4x4 option for the sake of smoother handling. So the blueprint was to change the engine-gearbox combo to an Isuzu petrol engine with matching 5-speed, 4x4, gearbox. However it was decided that we would keep the original engine-Tcase-gearbox in case we like to revert back to the original setting in future.

A major concern for the jeep as a whole was to decide where to get the modifications/restoration done. MJ were thoroughly conversant with the nature of expertise and workmanship of the so called Ďreputed mechanicsí of the jeep domain in Delhi and so were very hesitant to involve any of these people. They were almost fed up with this and really wanted to take things in control, in their own hand. Lucky for me, these thoughts got a final push at this time and they finally decided to set-up own workshop, dedicated exclusively to jeeps in an already acquired place! It was the dusshera time and I was in a holiday trip to goa, when I got to know that the workshop plan was finally getting implemented and even more, the place is just 10 minutes from my place!!! Boy, I was so happy with the thought that I can go anytime to have a look at the jeep and also understand the basic technicals with minimum discomfort. Next was the concern for the person who will actually get the hands dirty to do the project. And very soon there was a pleasant surprise, he is none other but Mís uncle who has years of specialization in dealing with petrol jeeps and the same person who had also done the blue modified CJ7 I mentioned earlier, probably the most mechanically perfect jeep in my vicinity. He agreed to come over here from his native place in Punjab to get the workshop going. I canít explain how much relieved I felt that day after days and nights of ominous speculations on how, where and by whom I will get a jeep done perfectly in case I buy one someday!

To be continued.......
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Old 19th January 2009, 12:35   #42
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You have got a very neat and cool 440. If I were there, would have retained the engine and fitted LPG kit for regular use and petrol for offroad.

Good one Kandisa.

Last edited by trammway : 19th January 2009 at 12:36.
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Old 19th January 2009, 12:37   #43
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@Somen - you are building up the story really well buddy! the jeep looks very clean for its age. You said you wanted to keep the running cost low as you would like to use it more often. With that in mind how well do you think the isuzu petrol will do in terms of fuel efficiency. I know that fuel efficiency and petrol jeep are two opposite things but just wanted to get your view on this as this was the reason for me convering my gypsy to diesel. Also, it would be quite simple to plonk in a XD3P mill with the 4x4 in there which is standard on the 550, wouldnt this be more cost effective?
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Old 19th January 2009, 12:52   #44
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thats a great find for you kandisa.....best of luck with the restoration
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Old 19th January 2009, 13:05   #45
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Good going Kandisa,

Cant wait to see your 440 hitting the dirt once complete.

I had driven a 540 once in Chandigarh with an Isuzu 1.8 petrol engine mated with a 4WD gearbox taken from a Isuzu 2.4 diesel engine. It worked superb. You could try this option also after discussing with experts.

Cheers !!!!!!!!
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