Jeep 4.0 in 69 Barracuda

Slant 6 Engines

  1. Bill Dedman

    Bill Dedman bill dedman Legendary Member

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    My computer died a couple of days ago and I am writing this on a borrowed notebook and I hate it...

    I'll get back to you when I get MY computer back from the shop...
     
  2. Bill Dedman

    Bill Dedman bill dedman Legendary Member

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    Well, the power supply and the motherboard were "fried" (power surge) so a new computer was ordered,,,, should be here Mon. or Tue. We'll see...
     
  3. KosmicKuda

    KosmicKuda FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    So are you going to turbocharge that new Mother?
     
  4. txstang84

    txstang84 Well-Known Member

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    Hey John, anything new? Get the front suspension put together yet?
     
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    • wyldebill

      wyldebill Member

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      I've wanted to build a boosted 4.0 for a long time. If is far superior in strenght to the slant. It has 7 main bearings. In the 60's Barney Navaro turbocharged a 200 inch amc 6 to over 600 hp. I've seen a jeep build up to a turbo stroker 6 make 700 hp. ( the limiting factor to it was the jeep efi.) Going to a tunable system would have allowed it to make more power. I have a lot of respect for both engines. Even though I'm building a "big" v8 for my valiant.
       
    • MopaR&D

      MopaR&D Nerd Member

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      That's awesome, they definitely had a great engine there. I feel the same way that's kind of why I'm not a huge slant fan. Owning a Jeep 4.0L it's just superior in almost every way except size and maybe weight...? A boosted 4.0L would be really scary in a 4x4 XJ Cherokee though it doesn't like going much past 90 lol. Enter A-body or AMC Rambler build....
       
    • JohnFM3

      JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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      I am really sorry for the lack of response to all. Life has taken a unfortunate turn since my last post and I am possibly facing divorce in my future. I will try to respond to all the question above as quickly as I can.

      John :-(
       
    • txstang84

      txstang84 Well-Known Member

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      Booooo!

      Sorry to hear that man...I hope for your sake, the dissolution is...civil.
       
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      • Cuprum-74

        Cuprum-74 Moparus Fanaticus

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        Yikes, sorry to hear that. If it goes down hill... DON'T let her get the car! I knew someone that went through a nasty divorce, his ex-wife ended up with the car (a 1967 Charger with a 383) She ended up giving it to her new husbands 17 yr old son. Who in turn wrapped it around a telephone pole because he was street racing it with his friends.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        At this time the possibility of Dissolution is up in the air. Like you, if it is to be I hope for it to be civil. But as we know, most are not.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        The Barracuda is not in her eye sights. She has her 72 Datsun 510 which has been built really nicely and I can say has been a fun car to drive in the past. She is not a mopar gal, likes her Datsun. Just respects my desire to own a classic car. Biggest reason her and I got together was her love for classic cars.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        So, the reason I am back and responding to messages is I have some comments to make about my experience regarding AJE products. My opinion will be mixed. Please stand by as I get images uploaded and my thoughts written down in a organized manor. I should be able to post during my lunch hour in about 3 hrs.

        Thank you everyone for following me in my journey with restoring my car.

        John
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        So all in all, I think the big question regarding AJE is would I purchase from them again. And the short answer is YES given the understanding I have now. But that comes with some clarity after dealing with his product and having corrections made.

        So let me see if I can clarify my poor answer above.

        So I got the suspension and K-Frame parts as shown on page 7 some time back. It took some time, but I finally got a chance to pull my car apart and start the assembly of the new parts. Which brings me to my first problem with this kit. Lack of good installation documentation. A quick phone call to AJE solved the confusion and the intended installation method became clear. That being said, AJE needs to create a better installation doc.

        So you don't have to go back and forth between page 7 and this page, I will re post pictures from there as I try to describe the issues and the changes.

        So here is a image of the original control arms I bought. Notice I went with stock bushings.
        20160720_212111_zpsoofgtkkd.jpg

        Ok, so here is where the problems start.
        The control arms are built to a specification which has been tested to fit while still raw. But it appears there was no post production fitment to ensure nothing changed. And as you can guess, due to normal spring back from the soft metal being bent, and compounded by the heating process during powder coating, these next pictures will show you the result and why the control arms didn't fit my car. The issue with the upper control arms were no argument from AJE and he even expressed concern and interest in looking at manufacturing processes changes including post fitment checks.

        Comparision of OME to AJE.
        20160924_151809%201_zpseajr7dtj.jpg

        With the other bushing seated properly, you can see the error in the control arm
        20160924_152032_zpsikdfldlr.jpg

        AJE's solution to this was to push it back into place and install it. Right there I can understand how people could have problems with binding and poor performance.

        This is a bit hard to see, but in this image, you can see how far off center is of the 2 bushings using a fairly new long 3/8 extension.
        20160925_190414_zpsv7fdlxsv.jpg

        The owner made a mistake when he justified himself by saying that jeep parts are built with larger deviation than this and that they are safe to drive on the road. As a proud owner of 2 Jeeps (92 Jeep Wrangler and a 97 Jeep Cherokee XJ) both of which are built and not bought, I responded that I would not accept this poor quality on my Jeeps and with the money I spent on the parts from AJE I would rather take a loss in the pocket book and buy new than run them as they are.

        So now lets talk about the problems with the lower control. Oh the lower control arms.
        So lets look at that lower control arm.
        20160720_212349_zpsd9djtsli.jpg

        Obviously this is not a stock setup. And I bought this knowing and wanting it. But I do want things that work together.

        Those bushings don't fit in the brackets that are welded to the K-Frame. There is too much material. More on that a bit later.

        First lets talk about using these bushings. This bushing style is pretty straight forward and shouldn't be that hard to fit in most vehicles.

        Take a guess at what these are... You guesed it. The center sleeve for the bushings...
        20160926_181527_zpsmrqrlhpy.jpg

        And due take note that all 4 are different length. WTF??? That should be a pretty simple thing to ensure are equal.

        Whats even better is the second longest one didn't fit in any of the K-Member tabs.
        20160926_182959_zpsr3jamimi.jpg

        Now keep this in mind when you think about my above comment about how there was too much material in the bushing.

        So here is the bushing aside the lower control arm
        20160926_181741_zpswp5lbz1n.jpg

        Here is a picture of the bushing and sleeve flush on one side.
        20160926_182005_zpsgmnmrgkh.jpg

        And here is the other side (keep in mind second longest in that line of 4)
        20160926_182013_zpsgur32ny6.jpg

        Now look again at the picture above and see how big this sleeve is to the lower control arm brackets welded to the K Frame. AJE owner said that I should be able to squeeze these bushings to fit. First off, grinding to the sleeve would be requied first, second and more importantly the bushings should fit snug in between the brackets with the sleeve being slightly smaller so when tightening the brackets squeeze on the bushing to the point of the sleeve. Yet a gain, fail. And as I pointed out to AJE post production fitment would have caught this problem. AJE was not all that happy with the deviation in the 4 sleeves let alone the fitment of the entire lower section to there K-Frame.


        And too the solution. In discussions with AJE where I expressed my dissatisfaction on what I purchased and asked for possible solutions, AJE was willing to upgrade me to their race package which included adjustable Heim Joints for free. And even paid for shipping.
        20161111_052509_zpsqn8omzh8.jpg

        The benefit of this is that no matter the direction of the fastening bolts holding the joint in place, the control arm will smoothly move due to the heim joint as compared to rubber joints. More importantly the movement will not kill the heim joint like it would have eaten the rubber joints. This is not what I wanted as I was not interested in the care of the heim joint, but at least it will run and I can work with this.

        The pit fall is I am going to need to build shims (close to 3/8 inch thick) for each joint. Probably 2 each to take up the space which was meant for those large bushings.

        For those who don't know what a Johnny Joint is...
        CE-9114CML - 2 1/2" Johnny Joint®, Billet, 1 1/4" LH Thread (2.625" x .562" Ball)
        ...these are used in Jeep and custom off road rigs quite frequently. And can width stand the abuse of a Rock Racer, let alone a 6000 pound Jeep in the hills. So a 3000 pound A body should be a walk in the park for it. Yes overkill, and not something I am looking at now as I just want the car back on the ground so it rolls.

        I may look at how to change out the Heim joints for these. Many say Currie sells the best ones made. There are others I may consider as this car gets moving.

        As too my opinion, I am willing to do business with AJE again. Though in my opinion there is no option other than the RACE kit. I really wish AJE would just sell the K-Frame alone again as the K-Frame is a nice piece of work. More importantly, I wish they would sell the kit as a builder kit. Or they need to do more post production quality control. If they would sell the K-Frame raw with no mounts, then provide detailed directions as to how they locate the lower control arm mount with templates, that would solve part of this problem.

        These are my opinions of AJE and my experience with the A body package. There is a lot I am sure I missed as much of this happened in early Sept and its now Nov. Please feel free to ask any questions for clarification.
         
        Last edited: Nov 14, 2016
      • txstang84

        txstang84 Well-Known Member

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        Dude, thanks for the explanation! All good info

        You set up the steering yet?
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        I have not setup steering as I don't have the suspension installed yet. I need to work out how I am going to remove the lower bump stop brackets to allow me to install the coil overs. Once I sort out the suspension, I will get that sorted out first then get the steering rack installed.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        Does anyone here in the Pierce County Washington area have a Lathe and be interested in assisting me with a small project?

        I need spacer/inserts built for my suspension heim joints.

        Its a pretty straight forward build.

        1 inch long
        3/4 inch Outer Diameter
        1/2 inch Inner Diameter

        1/4 inch on 1 end reduced to fit inside a Heim Joint which is roughly 5/8

        I need 8 of these spacers to be used on the 4 upper joints. I will need 8 more built for the lower's with different dimensions.

        I would much rather be apart of this build and find someone local. My alterative is to buy a small lathe myself which I am really considering.
         
        Last edited: Nov 20, 2016
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        The results from yesterday trying to find a machine shop willing to assist me with my project to correct my suspension, I was turned down. I was unable to find a shop willing to turn out a few small pieces for me. $100 was my limit for 8 little pieces, but because was not buying 500 or more pieces at more than $2 each (depending on the shop), it was not worth the shops efforts.

        As such, my OEM K-Frame and suspension is being put back on the car so I can move it out of the garage. I promised my son that I would get his car in and he has been patiently waiting for me to have my car moveable. Meanwhile I am going to put the K-Frame and parts on the work bench and correct the flaws which I believe hinder this kit. This will include the purchase of a new tool. I am buying a Grizzly G0765 Mini Lathe. May even try to do so during the After Thanksgiving sale.

        More on the issues of the suspension kit later. I want all this documented so anyone who purchases this kit knows what needs to be done to make it work well. For me, I continue to say that the K-Frame is worth it. Unless I want to dump the engine swap Idea and follow the crowd with going V8 (which I really don't). Frankly, AJE was the only shop who didn't brush my wants off. With many phone conversations of the other shops it felt like since I was not going V-8 (and a setup they were jigged up for), it was not worth the effort to build this. I felt minimized for want to go outside the norm. AJE was totally excited to be apart of it and shared in my excitement. I don't know if they are out sourcing different components, but I don't like how it works together. And I believe I have the knowledge to correct the short comings. After which I will provide feed back for AJE to decide if they want to include the design changes in to their product. As well as on this thread.

        John
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        BTW:
        Does anyone have a early A Body (preferably a late 60s barracuda) in the air with knuckles off??? (and if possible using the 70s suspension)

        I would like some measurements of the factory lower ball joint locations under load if possible

        Measurement I am looking for (all lower ball joint)
        Center Left to Right Ball Joint
        Center Left or Right Ball Joint to Center Rear Left or Right Axle shaft (or Leaf Spring center pin)

        My OEM setup is really warn out. I will grab numbers from it and post to this page as well. But again, they may not be as accurate due to warn parts. And it is the earlier set up with the smaller parts.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        It is done.
        I have purchased a Lathe. As said above, I ended up buying a Grizzly G0765 which is a 7in by 14 inch dual speed lathe with reverse.

        Provided is the link in the name and model number.

        It can even forward and reverse cut threads. All so I can start assembling the suspension. I will start with 1in OD Mild Steel (with a 1/2 inch ID) which I already own. Get some pieces built so I can get the suspension installed and the car on the ground. Once I get close to driving the car, I can re cut those out of Aluminum.
         
      • Killer6

        Killer6 Well-Known Member

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        Keep pluggin' brother! And FWIW, for the tiny amount of mass and durability's sake, I'd be tempted to just leave the steel in there Dude.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        thanks for the comment. If I was using Chromoly, I would agree. I don't know enough to make that call. But I will be asking for advice on this from people who know metal far better than I. All I can say for sure is there must be a reason the originals came as aluminum. And if I follow how the originals were built, no one can blame me for not making the best effort in keeping it safe or re engineering something I know nothing about. The other thing is rust factor. And that may be the only reason for using aluminum.

        We will see what my research finds when that comes. At this time, I am just looking to get the car back on the ground with the OEM setup so I can move it around the yard and into its new winter home. I will get pictures of that soon. Hopefully end of this holiday weekend.
         
      • Killer6

        Killer6 Well-Known Member

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        Lol, I'd say stainless, but if you worked in a machine shop You know what that's like to deal with!
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        Please if anyone does work in a machine shop, I would be glad to hear from you. Killer, would I be correct that you are a machinist (please feel free to PM me if you wish)? I am a engineer at Microsoft and though believe I'm capable of the mechanical aspect of this project, I am willing to admit my specialty is not Metallurgy. All I can do to make the best effort is make use of the types of materials originally used in the components. For no other reason than the belief that someone with more metal smarts than I made the decision that the chosen material was the best option for the intended use.
         
      • JohnFM3

        JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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        Happy Thanksgiving
         
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        • JohnFM3

          JohnFM3 Well-Known Member

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          Update
          Well, here is where we sit with the project. As state above, I bought a new lathe so I can machine some new bushings for the upper and lower control arm. After getting the lathe setup, I found a set back which I am not happy with it. In short, I do not like the how the cutting bit tool holder works. I wont go into great detail, but the cutting bit is almost 1/4 inch below the center line and Grizzly solution is to put shims under the bit. The better solution is to replace the stock tool holder to with a aftermarket quick change holder which has a height adjustability feature. So nothing has been done since as I need to purchase a $150 tool bit holder now. With Christmas coming, I am going to see what Santa drops off before I go about buying it.

          I am still looking for assistance in correcting the lower control arms. I may buy a portable band saw so I can start cutting up the control arms for prep to welding the corrections.

          Meanwhile, my car is out of the garage and in the tarp storage building allowing my son to use the garage for his project. I will be taking some measurements regarding the stock lower ball joint locations and posting them here.

          Things between the wife and I are holding stable with a possibility of surviving.
           
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