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Old 12th October 2010, 02:10   #1
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Default My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration

Dear All
I recently picked up a Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A Jeep (almost for peanuts by fluke) from a scrapyard in Nagpur. This is a Govt. auctioned vehicle, no idea about the year of Manufacture as the auction voucher has not come in my possession yet.

I plan to restore it to its previous glory over the next one year slowly as and when I have the time and cash.

I understand from the interaction with jeep gurus on the forum that the cj4a is a reincarnation of the cj3b - only difference being a slightly longer wheelbase while the rest is same as a cj3b (please correct me if I am wrong). So my vehicle could well be called as a cj3b sibling.

Cost of Acquisition : Rs. 30,000/- INR with auction voucher

The plan for this restoration is as follows:

Budget : Rs. 70,000/-
Time frame : 1 year

Step 1:
Starting the engine in as is where is condition and deciding if the engine needs any immediate work

Step 2:
Overhauling the gearbox, transfer case and other mechanicals

Step 3:
Restoration of the body tub and chassis.

Step 4:
Cosmetic alterations to make her look like the Army Willys cj3b (will need to know how the Willys cj3b was different from the mahindra cj4a)

Step 5:
Probable shortening of the wheelbase to bring it to cj3b standards ( I again need to understand if this is possible, how to go about this and if this step needs to be done with step 2/3).

Here are some of the initial photographs of my bride :

Love at first sight
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Under the hood from right
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Under the hood from front
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Under the hood from left
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Under the hood from left
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carb from left
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carb from right
My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration-img_9547.jpg

distributor
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alternator
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Identification plate (can you tell me which year model this is? The serial number appears to be: 178602)
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Driving area
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From the rear
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Below the jeep from rear
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Dashboard with meters
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Below the jeep from front
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Below the jeep from side
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Below the jeep from side
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Below the jeep from side - looking backwards
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Bridal procession: Ready to be towed home
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First on road ride
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Some initial impressions about the vehicle:
  1. The front propeller shaft was removed.
  2. The brake master cylinder is not there.
  3. There is considerable rusting all around - bonnet is completely rusted.
  4. The gear lever is freely moving in 360 degrees.
  5. The steering has a lot lot of play.
  6. The spark plugs were missing from the engine.
  7. Overall the vehicle looked mechanically intact and robust - I got this intution after seeing and feelingthe Jeep.

Considering these, how should I proceed to step one - i.e trying to start the engine in as is where is condition ? Please help with in a step by step manner.

Please let me know if you need detailed photograph of various parts. These are some hasty shots which i managed to get today and even the processing snt that good.

Can the Jeep gurus throw light on the origins and the history of the CJ4A and explain how different it is from the CJ3B ?

regards,
Dr. A Ghosh

Last edited by abheekg : 12th October 2010 at 02:11.
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Old 12th October 2010, 10:23   #2
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Default Cj4a

Quote:
Originally Posted by abheekg View Post
Can the Jeep gurus throw light on the origins and the history of the CJ4A and explain how different it is from the CJ3B ?
Hi Doc,

Some differences I know.

1) 91" Wheel Base

2) 4.27:1 Differential Ratio (CJ4 was 5.38:1)

3) High-Torque 3 Speed Gear Box. (optional for all early M&M JEEPs)
1st Gear - 3.39:1
2nd - 1.85:1
3rd - 1.00:1
Reverse - 4.53:1

Regards,

Arka

PS - DB Sir & Spike Please correct me if I'm wrong and add some more details, Distinguishing features.
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Old 12th October 2010, 10:44   #3
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Hey Congratz Dr Ghosh. I see many original parts and in decent shape. A complete overhaul should bring this beauty back to its pristine condition. Looking forward to the updates.
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Old 12th October 2010, 11:08   #4
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Hi doc,
to start the engine as is where is condition,
1) try turning the crank pulley and make sure the pistons are moving. if fan belt is intact just turn the fan with man power.
2) remove the carb and clean it with petrol. clean up the jets and make sure the pump and float is working along with the float jet.
3) get new spark plugs but check out before weather you would need a short one or long one.
4) clean up the distributor and get a new ignition coil.
5) get two lengths of battery wires, connect positive terminal to the starter and another to chassis or ground point.
6) take a small wire and connect positive point of ignition coil to battery positive and negative point of the coil to the distributor.
7) now use a wire or a screw driver to touch the battery positive wire at the starter and the solenoid terminal. please refer to thread on "off road failures" by sudharshan. this will cause the starter to run and you can crank the engine.
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Old 12th October 2010, 11:11   #5
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lot of works needed on the body. Price that you got for is outstanding.

and 70k is a pretty decent budget.

Best part is that the engine looks in pretty decent shape. I feel, unlike diesel engines, petrol motors are easy to get along and make it to tip top shape.

Also consult UBS sir for more details.

-K
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Old 12th October 2010, 11:21   #6
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Most important: PLEASE CLEAN UP THE OIL SUMP and the valve cover internals as much as possible, then ensure you flush out the muck as much as possible, fill up new oil with new filter! BEFORE starting an engine which lay idle for years. This will avoid you serious heart aches.

Quote:
Originally Posted by star_aqua View Post
Hi doc,
to start the engine as is where is condition,
1) try turning the crank pulley and make sure the pistons are moving. if fan belt is intact just turn the fan with man power.
2) remove the carb and clean it with petrol. clean up the jets and make sure the pump and float is working along with the float jet.
3) get new spark plugs but check out before weather you would need a short one or long one.
4) clean up the distributor and get a new ignition coil.
5) get two lengths of battery wires, connect positive terminal to the starter and another to chassis or ground point.
6) take a small wire and connect positive point of ignition coil to battery positive and negative point of the coil to the distributor.
7) now use a wire or a screw driver to touch the battery positive wire at the starter and the solenoid terminal. please refer to thread on "off road failures" by sudharshan. this will cause the starter to run and you can crank the engine.

Last edited by Jaggu : 12th October 2010 at 11:22.
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Old 12th October 2010, 12:41   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post
Most important: PLEASE CLEAN UP THE OIL SUMP and the valve cover internals as much as possible, then ensure you flush out the muck as much as possible, fill up new oil with new filter! BEFORE starting an engine which lay idle for years. This will avoid you serious heart aches.
Dr. Ghosh,

Get all the electricals in order first, CB, condenser, plugs, coil battery etc.
Drain old oil if any completely and as advised by Jaggu .
Put in new 3-4 litres of new flushing oil, or engine clean up treatment, change to new oil filter.
Run engine at idle for 6-8 minutes.
Drain flushing oil completely, remove oil filter.
Put in a second new oil filter.
Put in new engine oil and run engine again.

You will be using two new oil filters but it is worth it.


The above steps are recommended to remove years of greasy oil, carbon build up, deposits and all the muck from where the hand cannot reach.

By this time you will also be able to determine the running condition of your engine.
Regards,

Last edited by fazalaliadil : 12th October 2010 at 12:47.
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Old 12th October 2010, 13:07   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abheekg View Post
Step 5:
Probable shortening of the wheelbase to bring it to cj3b standards
Please avoid this step and retain the 91" WB. This step involves cutting of chassis and tub, changing the rear diff housing and living with a lot of alignment issues (if dont incorrectly). Above all, you could have got a SWB if you wanted one, originality is the key here.
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Old 12th October 2010, 13:49   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abheekg View Post
Step 4:
Cosmetic alterations to make her look like the Army Willys cj3b (will need to know how the Willys cj3b was different from the mahindra cj4a)

Step 5:
Probable shortening of the wheelbase to bring it to cj3b standards ( I again need to understand if this is possible, how to go about this and if this step needs to be done with step 2/3).
Hi Doc,

Its a CJ4A, keep it a CJ4A, it is still considered to be from the CJ3B Family.

Its a civilian Jeep, Keep it a Civilian JEEP.

Regards,

Arka

PS - Do you remember the considerations and conditions which led to buying this JEEP?
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Old 12th October 2010, 22:05   #10
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Congratulations for the new acquisition. Please do not play around the chassis by cutting and welding etc. Understand this could not only ruin the looks are alignment it could also turn disaster as the flex of chassis will be lost during the hit with the temperature with welding activity.

CJ4A itself a rare breed and keep it with originality.

Regarding the spark plug missing issue, See if there is a water logging symptom inside the spark plug hole. This could be an issue with the liner being corroded due to prolonged no care state.

Make sure all the points raised by the experts here are skillfully followed by an expert mechanic. I could see the current chassis is in good condition and most of the mechanical parts are intact. Tinkering and Painting are the last priority, just make sure the legal papers are brought into your name first before even touching the vehicle.

The tax part for actioned vehicle normally a over kill if not registered immediately after the action.
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Old 13th October 2010, 19:54   #11
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Congratulations! All the very best. Let me know if I can be of some help in this restoration

-Karumbaiah
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Old 14th October 2010, 05:15   #12
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Default Will maintain the originality of the cj4a (Period)

Thank you Arka, Jaggu, star aqua, Sir Alec, Fazal saab, svsantosh, Tramway, Karumbaiah for your inputs.

As per the advise, this Jeep is going to be restored as a CJ4A and its originality will be maintaind. There will be no cutting of body and shortening of chassis.

The progress of work is delberately slow. Engine oil flushing is being done over the last 2 days and today the mechanic will try to start the vehicle. He is procuring the spark plugs, and something which he called as the bottle starter which he said should go here :
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Gurus kindly help me and tell me what goes in the part circled in red and where do I get it from ? Can I use a part of any other Mahindra Jeep ?
What things to be kept in mind when trying to start the engine for the first time?

I have been doing extensive reading of the various threads on restorations of cj3b's here and on the cj3b page. I know its kind of premature but I couldn't help oogling at the various photographs of restored cj3bs and make a mental image of what my jeep may look when she's finished.

Falling in love is simply the best feeling in the world. But I sometimes wish we could fall in love only once, especially when it comes to automobiles.
I am in love, all over again - with this look of the Jeep :
My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration-dream.jpg

Sometime (months/years) down the line my Jeep will look something like this !!

regards,
Dr. A Ghosh

Last edited by abheekg : 14th October 2010 at 05:18.
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Old 14th October 2010, 08:19   #13
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Dr. Ghosh,
Your mechanic's bottle starter means IGNITION COIL.
In the circled area, thats what goes on the fire wall as in attached pic.

Use flushing oil as stated in my earlier post.

Let us know about the start up...The whole forum is keeping their fingers crossed.
All the very best.
Regards,
My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration-picture-063.jpg

Last edited by fazalaliadil : 14th October 2010 at 08:22.
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Old 14th October 2010, 08:25   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abheekg View Post
something which he called as the bottle starter which he said should go here :
tell me what goes in the part circled in red and where do I get it from ? Can I use a part of any other Mahindra Jeep ?
that's ignition coil.
ask for lucas make ambassador heavy duty coil. or lucas coil for multi cylinder engine.
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Old 14th October 2010, 09:00   #15
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Congratulations,You are lucky to get an Original CJ4A. If you are planing to maintain the originality try something like this.

Its a MWB jeep (Should be a CJ4A)
My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration-jeep-050.jpg
My Jeep Bride - Mahindra Willys Petrol CJ4A ( CJ3B sibling ) - Ground up restoration-jeep-051.jpg
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