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Old 19th August 2009, 21:54   #1
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Post Resurrection: A CJ3B STORY

This Monday night I had a new addition to my workshop. It is a Mahindra CJ3B, which has been bought by a fellow Jeeper and friend Naveen. I would like to mention about Harjeev here. Who has played a crucial role by helping Naveen find the Jeep he always wanted to own, restore and cherish for a long time to come.

So first of all I would like to Congratulate Naveen for finally being able to realize his dream. Secondly I thank him for entrusting my team the task of restoring the beast back to life. I have started this thread to document the restoration process of this Jeep. I would try to post regular updates on the work being done on the Jeep.

As people have been asking me about contrast between by T-Bhp handle and Machines I work on. I would like to mention here that I sure was fascinated by diesel powered 4x4s and SUVs. As I have owned a 4x4 Tata Safari for over 7 years, I was amazed to see such an underpowered vehicle performing well on inclines etc due to the sheer Torque of the diesel motor. I have been so eagerly awaiting for the 2.2 L AVL designed DICOR motor, this is when I came across T-Bhp while looking for clues online about a probable launch date. As my trusted work horse has started to give problem due to old age (it was a 1998 TCIC Model). I started following the Safari thread on the T-Bhp and joined the forum under the handle Diesel Maniac.

In summer of 2007 TOI was running an article named `Tribal Instincts’ every Sunday. There was an article about `Jeep Thrills’ in the 1st July 2007 edition of the news paper. I went through the article and I was hooked. I went online searched for the printed web address of the community and joined it right away. I got in touch with Sarvinder Bhaji, who was one of the moderators for NI. He invited me for an OTR. After attending the OTR, I knew no matter what I have to own a 4x4 Jeep. My first choice because of the obvious reason was an Army disposal 540 (till then I didn’t even new that Mahindra had moved on to 550). After a visit to Mayapuri I became acquainted with the 550. So I was hell bent to pick up a 550 and restore it and drive it around for my trips and OTRs. Since budget was a constraint I kept looking a cheaper option in the market.

In between all this I met Mandeep (He goes by the handle `Renegade‘ on the forum, I cannot thank you enough for everything you did for me). He suggested me to look at other options. He advised me to go for a petrol powered option for my first Jeep. “It would be a little cheaper than a diesel jeep and a lot cheaper to restore in comparison to the diesel one”, he said.
I still remember the day when I first went to see the 3B with him. Although the head of the engine was already been taken apart as somebody before me had bought the vehicle on Mandeep’s advice but later developed a cold feet and changed his decision to go ahead. I saw the Jeep, and it was in decent condition being an Ex-Air Force Vehicle. I bought it from the existing owner and got the engine piston ring job and basic mechanicals done from the guy, at whose workshop the Jeep was parked. It was after a long wait of 3 Months the Jeep was handed over to me. I simply fell in Love with this Jeep. It was a great combination of power, torque, agility and looks. Above all it was silent. Over the time participating in various OTR in the NCR region I have been amazed to see this machine perform so effortlessly. So here is how a diesel maniac was hooked to petrol jeeps.

Albeit reading about the efforts of other Jeepers about restoring or building a custom diesel off-roaders based on 550 platform has got me thinking about revisiting the realms of diesel power once more…..

Here are a few pictures of Naveen’s Jeep. I clicked these before commencing work on the Jeep.
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Old 20th August 2009, 08:45   #2
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Very neat looking jeep on the outside. The underbody will need some thorough work. Best of luck for the project.
Saikat
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Old 20th August 2009, 10:01   #3
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Good Post Jasvinder. Congrats Naveen. It looks very clean. Hope to see you in action soon.

Good Luck.

Cheers
Ankit.
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Old 20th August 2009, 15:16   #4
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Great condition Jeep. Rust is very little, Get a sand blast if you are into a Full restore mode. or just do the mechanicals for now.
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Old 20th August 2009, 18:08   #5
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Note to MODS; I apologize for not being the person who is writing this process down.

a) My work / travel schedule would mean I would miss many crucial aspects of the build.
b) I thuroughly lack the technical expertise to put things down in an articulated matter.

Jasvinder has been kind enough to offer his time in putting this up step by step.
Harjeev,..was instrumental in me buying this jeep. He is turning out to be the Godfather of this machine,..thru selection to ressurection. Thank you guys I would not have been to do this without you.

Today we tried to start the engine,...bummer it was seized. However not due to driving negligently but due to poor stowage. The engine was missing the 4th plug as can be seen in the pics of the engine bay,..and water got into the 4th cylinder leading to rust. This has jammed the piston tight and will have to be taken apart.

I have been told that a complete rebuld is probably better than just a piston ring job,..so hence there is a brighter side to it.

Anyway today is Day 01 of the build the target is to hav this jeep road & OTR worthy by 30th Sep (my birthday). Lets see
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Old 21st August 2009, 12:03   #6
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Congrats Naveen.

WoW WoW

I am kicking myself for not going to Mayapuri with you. Some guys have all the luck!
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Old 21st August 2009, 12:39   #7
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Excellent find, really neat looking jeep. Congratulations, I'm glued to this thread as my CJ3B restoration will happen in the form of military alike vehicle and all the photos you have provided here is already cleared few of my doubts.
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Old 21st August 2009, 13:21   #8
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Hi Jasvinder very nice jeep, it seems some one in air force has personal affection for this vehicle may be this vehicle kept in a covered area before action congrajulation for a nice find all the best for the project.
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Old 21st August 2009, 20:16   #9
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Congrats! Another Jeep in the house! Looks like this one needs some TLC and should be back to its old glory.
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Old 21st August 2009, 20:49   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torque-ative View Post
Note to MODS; I apologize for not being the person who is writing this process down.

a) My work / travel schedule would mean I would miss many crucial aspects of the build.
b) I thuroughly lack the technical expertise to put things down in an articulated matter.

Jasvinder has been kind enough to offer his time in putting this up step by step.
Quote:
Harjeev,..was instrumental in me buying this jeep. He is turning out to be the Godfather of this machine,..thru selection to ressurection. Thank you guys I would not have been to do this without you.
Naveen buddy, you don't have to thank me!!! It always was and will always be a pleasure. Infact I learnt loads while I was with you buying the jeep as you know that I don't need a reason to go to Mayapuri!!!
Thankyou for putting your trust into me!!! I really appreciate it!!! Looking forward to learn lots more during the restoration of your baby!!!

Infact I am eagerly waiting for your call so that we guys can again go to Mayapuri for buying your second jeep!!!!


Quote:
Today we tried to start the engine,...bummer it was seized. However not due to driving negligently but due to poor stowage. The engine was missing the 4th plug as can be seen in the pics of the engine bay,..and water got into the 4th cylinder leading to rust. This has jammed the piston tight and will have to be taken apart.

I have been told that a complete rebuld is probably better than just a piston ring job,..so hence there is a brighter side to it.

Anyway today is Day 01 of the build the target is to hav this jeep road & OTR worthy by 30th Sep (my birthday). Lets see
I completely agree that as the engine is seized and the vehicle is parked for a long time only a complete rebuild is advisable. And the best part is that in petrols it doesn't cost much to rebuild the engine and do the mechanical work especially when compared to diesels. So don't worry about it and enjoy the restoration. Its the most exciting and a little tiring time in the ownership period.
And again I would like to mention and thank Mandeep. If it wasn't for him I myself would have never picked up the two CJ3B's that I have in my stable!!!
I think the credit goes to him for popularizing the Hurricane culture in NIOC
I owe you one buddy, BIG TIME!!!
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Old 21st August 2009, 20:54   #11
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Post Resurrection :Update 1

Yesterday we started work on the CJ3B. Naveen came up at the workshop to discuss about the plan of action regarding the rebuild. We decided to start with the engine first. It will be inspected, started(if possible) to ascertain its vitals. The motor would be taken apart and sent for machining, drilling etc for the rebuild if the need be. We had a hunch that it might be stuck or seized since the spark plug of the fourth cylinder was hanging by the spark plug cable only. Which meant there was all the probability of water, dust etc entering the cylinder block and doing some damage. A check at the dipstick also showed water in the oil sump.

We tried to move the engine with the help of the Engine Cranking Handle (The one like which used to come with WW2 Jeeps or vintage vehicles. It has a fork like mouth built on one end which connects to the belt pulley attached on the crank shaft). The engine did not turn even after we tried to rock the vehicle by engaging the gears and pushing it. So we decided to take it apart. The engine has suffered some extensive rusting over time around the inlet Valves and Tappets in the Head, Fourth Cylinder, Exhaust Valves, Cam Shaft and Crankshaft area.

The engine was given a diesel oil dip in order to loosen the rust and restore some movement. It was still in seized position after 24 hour of oil bath. It will be taken apart completely today and various components will be measured for sizes of new spares like Piston, Main Bearing and Bigens etc that will be fitted for the rebuild. Here are a few pictures of Engine during the process.
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Old 21st August 2009, 23:21   #12
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Wow,...jasvinder ,.this is real time data to its owner direct Courtesy T-bhp,..its gotta be a first !!! HMMM it needs work Bro !! I am bringing the youngest Jeeper in T-bhp history to check out the progress t'morrow (My 2 1/2 year old son) !!!!!
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Old 21st August 2009, 23:31   #13
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Hey Navin,
Congrats on your purchase!!
You took your time and did the right thing.
Welcome to the Jungle!!
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Old 22nd August 2009, 00:06   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torque-ative View Post
Anyway today is Day 01 of the build the target is to hav this jeep road & OTR worthy by 30th Sep (my birthday). Lets see
Dont work on time frames buddy, you'll get into a lot of emotional turmoil.

I've tried all that in past so many times, and trust me. It does not work.

Anyways congratulations on buying a very neat jeep, would love to see it come to life ASAP

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Originally Posted by Torque-ative View Post
I am bringing the youngest Jeeper in T-bhp history to check out the progress t'morrow (My 2 1/2 year old son) !!!!!
Good, he should start learning these process very young.
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Old 22nd August 2009, 00:07   #15
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The woods maybe dark and deep,..but I've got promises to keep,..and miles to go before I sleep !!! That is if I can sleep !!
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