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Old 25th March 2011, 16:25   #1
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Arrow Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

My thread was put on Assenbly line by the MODS, more details were required as per guidelines. Reposting my opening post as per the guidelines.

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My search for a 4x4 has been on for some time though I have a 2X4 Scorpio. Have driven almost the length and bredth of the country on my scorpio (WOLT) but haven't dared to to take it fully off road. Got my tyres ripped on the Kargil - Padum road, got almost beached in Bhuj and could not take it off road where a 4x4 would have given me confidence to take calculated risks.

The jeep I have in mind need to cruise long distance, should have all the creature comforts and yet be capable of off roading, not hard core. Considered a few Gypsys, chased a few, drove a few, tested out many but was not to be. The cost of petrol, time needed to build it, costs and expert workshops around me was a deterrent to finally decide a MM550. Aditya (AVR here) already had a jeep and knew how to do a build if it comes to that and kept an eye out for me. I checked TBHP classifieds, spread the word around and MM550's started appearing on the radar. The last one was in Ankleswar, 250 KMS one way; went and tested that in Jaunary, meeting fixed by AVR but the owner wanted to wait till May.

ADV was a great source of inspiration, he kept egging me on with links, information and knowledgible discussions on Jeeps in general. Another Guru here is Yograj (Calls himself a Jeep Historian), someone who has been living many jeeps on his vast farm lands for years; knows his nuts and bolts well. We got together and kept discussing 4x4 and jeeps, our bond got stronger during Desert Storm when Yogi took the co-drivers sear on WOLT. Adi pointed me to an add on TBHP around Jan end, we went and met the owner of a MM550 in great condition, the quoted price was 445L; red hot price, we said thanks and took off pronto

The specks of this jeep which I ultimately bought:

-- MM550, XDB with a BA10 GB, 1999. Bought by the present owner from abother friend who had maintained it well.
-- Odo at 60 K kms.
-- Reportedly, engine and GB not touched so far, evaluation also indicated the same.
-- Gear box 5 + 1 , 4 X 4 with four speeds
-- Everything else other the Engine and GB worked on by present owner, all original spares used as proved by bills.
-- Apollo Rough Terrain tyres with Alloy wheels 265 x 75 x 15
-- Black out lights
-- Soft top, Army hood, detachable
-- LAMBDA Hub locks
-- Leather bucket seats
-- ROOTS Horns
-- LUCAS 80 AMP battery
-- New wiring with auto heater
-- Arm rest console & Storage Space
-- Hella Fog lamps - 2 Spots and 4 diffused, total 6.
-- Army grey color.

Discussions with this jeep owner happened on and off, Yogi tested out the jeep and OKed it to be mechanically very sound, priced it between 2.75 -3.00L. He took it off the road through a tough course of mud heaps, the 4x4 his was perfect, LO was engaging with difficulty, we had to do some reversing to get disengated, nothing spanner work won't cure. Jeep was registered in the RTO circle as my address with expensive alloys + tyre combo. Though the price came down in rounds of negotiation it was nowhere near 3L, so was left open. Last week the owner called up for another round, I called up Yogi (Adi was out country), on 24th morning we closed the deal at 320L. The Jeep was mine. My work schedule was packed due to year end, so all I could do was to park it in. Will call it it JOLT (my scorp is WOLT= Wide one that Bolts, so a Wide Jeep that Bolts = JOLT)

Yesterday took JOLT for a chakkar of 65 Kms on he ring road with my wife (she refused to drive seeing me toiling at the wheels on turns). JOLT has bling value with the wheels screaming at you, people looked closely at JOLT, he painting is decent with the mechanicals in smooth working condition. Behaved well on the highway, could clock 80 kmph with some rattling and a hell lot of noise from engine, rushing wind and the soft top flapping around. The heat form the engine was oozing into the footwell and also found the brake inadequate to stop, had to downshift to kill speed a couple of times, the zing of the engine nowhere near that of a Crde; guess it's not expected. Hitting a bump were bouncy, people in the back would hit the roof, wonder if I need to check the shocks?

The big side mirrors are life savers, the central RVM useless, fogged out by the plastiky back hood. If I down the soft flap just behind the driver's seat too , nothing through the RVM would be visible. The fog lamps are pretty good, nice telescope switch; one pull the two big ones come on, good for 300-500 mtrs of focused beam, one more pull the 4 small ones come on, good for about 200 mtrs with diffused lighting. One more telescope switch brings on the front parking lights and reverse lights. The lamp on the roof is a relic, non functonal and need to be replaced.

Found traffic around melting, nobody tried to rush in front (even ricks stopped respectfully) must be Jeep thing or is it a jeep combined with a fully bald guy driving it? For those reckless ones a blast wih the Roots horn would see them scampering for safety Another Jeep thing?

What more would JOLT need? An A/C urgently and a PS (after evaluating); want my wife to drive it locally too. Parking in the narrow confines of my basement is a pain and so are taking U turns, guess it needs getting used to after driving a Scorpio!!

The front footwell space is big and comfortable, the front seats comfy, back seats bone shakers and need to be replaced. The fog lamps would need hoods to deterrer tempting hands, the underbody would need a full coat of paint, Yogesh said there was practically no paint there so this would be a priority before rains. There are many other points with rust, the windshield brackets, near the radiators and places in the engine bay.

The instrument cluster is a pain point, the steering blocks view of the dials; has a battery dial, oil pressure guage, speedo, fuel guage, temp guage. The lights on the dial comes on and off, a loose contact, the whole dashboard gives off a loud clatter and the glove compartment is stuck. When the A/C work is done need to replace the dash and realign the dials. The steering position itself is not comfortable, higher then scorpio, need to adjust the seat to make it comfy. JOLT would also need basic ICE which can be secured away somewhere, no idea where now. The Arm rest console is nifty; lift it, you have a cave inside with a 12V jack, pretty functional. I was told to expect a mielage of 10-12 on the highway and 10 in the city, similar to the Scorpio.

I would require the able guidance of JEEP GURUS here on the following. Been pouring over most of the 4x4 threads here, most times feel like a child at the edge of an ocean, you guys are dripping in the "jeep thing" and up to your elbows in grease. Gives a lot of confidance to own a jeep.

1. Power Steering: Would be very useful in city and on the twisty hills, but may be a pain on OTR? What grade of ORT can a PS take? I am ready to cut / chop / weld to get this done. Cost about 25-30K?

2. A/C: A must, the heat has crossed 40. Would the Soft partition behind the driver seat be enough to contain the cabin for the A/C or would it need a hard partion with a glass window? Speed King set up would cost about 20-25 K? What are other options?

3. Should I change the Dashboard? Something that would acommodate the blower too? Cost about 3-4 k?

4. What kind of underbody painting is good for a Jeep? For my Scorpio and Wagon R, EVERY YEAR I use regulation black rubber based paint for the underchasis. Is this OK for a Jeep?

5. What are the options to reduce engine heat coming into the foot well and also the noise levels? Though I cannot expect NVH ratios near to a Scorpio, it would be nice to deaden them all around.

6. Where can the ICE head be hidden away safely? Glove box is a choice, any other options?

Attaching herewith an excel with JOLT project cost, have done costing of a lot of items after studying posts here, please correct if I am off the mark by more than 2000 K in range.

Have lot of ideas for a hard top from TBHP, tossing in for the next plase, will fill you up on that later.
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Attached Thumbnails
Ahoy! There MM550 blows!-img_6205.jpg  

Ahoy! There MM550 blows!-img_6203.jpg  

Ahoy! There MM550 blows!-img_6194.jpg  

Ahoy! There MM550 blows!-img_6196.jpg  

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File Type: xls PROJECT JOLT.xls (18.5 KB, 307 views)

Last edited by ramkya1 : 30th March 2011 at 19:31.
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Old 25th March 2011, 16:42   #2
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

HARPOONS ON THE BROADSIDE MATES..

NICE!!! COngrats.

The colour looks quite good and looks well build too.

Another one bites the dust.
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:00   #3
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ramkya1 View Post
After a long search for a 4x4 located and clinched the deal for a bling MM550 yesterday. Brought it home, parked it for now, will need to work on it when I get free time in April.

Having driven a loaded Scropio for some and this jeep without PS or AC I clearly understand what refinement of a deisel is all about

Will need inputs on the following:

1) A power steering set up, parking on our basement is a chore with the jeep and I want my wife to drive it too when we do long distance, so advise on PS.

2) In Ahmedabad without A/C it would be imporssible to drive this beast, so advise on A/C.

Have lots of places in HP, Uttranchal & Ladakh to cover and this jeep needs to have creature comforts too.

Thanks in advance.

--Ramky
=====
get a snorkel fitted first mate
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:07   #4
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spitfire View Post
HARPOONS ON THE BROADSIDE MATES..

............dust.
OK...... here goes one. More loading

====
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:23   #5
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

You have fantastic Scorpio on which you traveled length and breadth of India and it is capable for more travel to all locations that you have mentioned in your post.

The why this crude vehicle for long distance travel? Adding to this it is not as reliable as Scorpio and not as comfortable as Scorpio.

Any pointers that MM550 can do which Scorpio cannot do for your kind of use?
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:39   #6
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Congratulations Saar!!!

You seem to have found a great vehicle.

Ek ride C G Road pe banta hain
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:40   #7
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Arrow Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Anuj,

I found my Scorpio sinking in Bhuj and the Rann of Kutch, almost got miired. Have desert crazy birdies who go deep, really deep into the Rann and wanted to do that with the Jeep.

Other than that plan to do Gangotri and Yamunotri sometime this year; have done other other 2 Dhams on my Ford Fusion earlier, I think a MM550 would do this more easily. Lots of rough terrain in mind to cover

A well worked Jeep would be very reliable? Plan to do some ORT's too, I would not dare risk my Scorpio on ORT terrain.

--Ramky
======

Quote:
Originally Posted by anujmishra View Post
You have fantastic Scorpio on which you traveled length and breadth of India and it is capable for more travel to all locations that you have mentioned in your post.

The why this crude vehicle for long distance travel? Adding to this it is not as reliable as Scorpio and not as comfortable as Scorpio.

Any pointers that MM550 can do which Scorpio cannot do for your kind of use?
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Old 25th March 2011, 17:50   #8
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Arrow Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Sure thing.

Know any reliable Jeep A/C guys?

Hope your Ladakh ride went of well.

--Ramky

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bapu View Post
Congratulations Saar!!!

You seem to have found a great vehicle.

Ek ride C G Road pe banta hain
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Old 25th March 2011, 18:05   #9
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Congrats !
Nice 550 , let it take you places where your Scorpio refuses to .
Cheers !
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Old 25th March 2011, 18:29   #10
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ramkya1 View Post
Anuj,

A well worked Jeep would be very reliable? Plan to do some ORT's too, I would not dare risk my Scorpio on ORT terrain.

--Ramky
======
Famous last words!
A well worked jeep will make you a 3/4th mechanic rather than a full mechanic
Having said that, it is a fine looking vehicle. Welcome to the club!
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Old 25th March 2011, 21:12   #11
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Ramki Sir congrats!

So finally your quest for a Jeep concludes and the work starts. Could you please illustrate what engine, gear box is it running?

Cheers
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Old 25th March 2011, 21:49   #12
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Congrats on the purchase, "your trouble begins now!". Happy Jeeping.

Spike
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Old 25th March 2011, 22:12   #13
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Congrats, Ramky. Time to get that grease under your fingernails.

OT quick tip: Removing that grease is easy if you use cheap detergent used for washing fabric, and any old toothbrush.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SPIKE ARRESTOR View Post
Congrats on the purchase, "your trouble begins now!". Happy Jeeping.

Spike
Spike, on behalf of Ramky I appoint you chief engineer for the upgrade / restoration project of this vehicle. Nashik-Ahmedabad to and fro tickets to be sponsored by Ramky every weekend!
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Old 25th March 2011, 22:16   #14
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Congrats .
Nice looking MM550 few more details please model Engine GB etc. It seems like the previous owner also had a good taste.
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Old 25th March 2011, 22:41   #15
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Default Re: Ahoy! There MM550 blows!

Excellent Jeep !!! I love every bit of it, superb looking alloys did it come along with the jeep if so then I should say the prev owner must also be a creative jeeper. I don't think this jeep will make you happy as your Scorpio did but never know it could be vice versa aswell.

How about some complete pictures of the jeep I believe all the ones you have posted must be taken from your basement.

Once again congratulations on you acquisiton and am sure you will enjoy it very much.
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