M715 Adventure Rig

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joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
I'm making slow and steady progress on the frame. I got most of the rust knocked off and I've started to paint the rest of it. It amazes me how solid the metal is despite being 50 years old! The prep and paint takes a lot of patience that I don't always have. But I'm hoping it will look good in the end. In between all of this, I got the V10's flywheel resurfaced and hopefully I'll put the drivetrain together this weekend for a test fit.

The amount of metal here is unreal for a "Michigan" truck. I bought it here but I feel like it spent a lot of its time in the southwest.






shiny and new!


I removed the valve cover from the 230 so I could keep it when I sell the engine. It's crazy how big its rocker arms are! It's also interesting to look at a SOHC design from the 60's.
 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
I made a little more progress today. I finished painting what I could reach on the frame as well as the shock towers and bumper covers. I'll do the axles and springs in the summer when I can degrease them better. I should be able to get the top of the frame when I take the bed off to fix the back of the cab. I may lift the cab enough to paint the top of the frame there as well. I might as well right? I'm just worried about tweaking the cab since it doesn't have much structure.





 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
ok, long time no update. I haven't been able to do much since I was travelling all of Jan-Feb and it's only recently started to warm up. I've finally got a welder set up to a degree and now I'm only waiting on gas (hopefully I can get out of work on time at some point this week to get some).



Otherwise, I've mostly just been fiddle-farting with it and waiting on parts. I did swap out the turn signal system with the kit from Star Electric. Kevin was a great guy to work with and is very knowledgeable.








I've also got the steering apart and brakes apart. The plan for the next steps are to set up the steering column (new couple, rag joint, install the box and pitman arm), remove the brake master cylinder, remove the bed, patch the hole in the back of the cab, then clean and paint the back, underside, and firewall of the cab, reinstall a brake booster and master cylinder, THEN do the engine and trans mounts. So a lot to gain a little. haha.
Honestly, after seeing Jeep's 5quarter concept, I'm really motivated to get mine done! I also need to replace the serpentine belt on my daily... might do that first... haha

 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
Alright, I finally got around to repairing the hole in the back of the cab and painting said cab. Getting the bed moved took a bit of ingenuity since the chances of getting me and 3 of my friends is the same place at the same time is low. But nothing a cherry picker couldn't resolve. Once that was out of the way, I cut away the problem section, welded in a new patch (not the best but it worked), did a lot of grinding, then paint! I think it came out really nice. Now I have to order metal for engine/trans mounts and figure out how I want to build mounts. This lone act of getting the engine and trans placed is the most worrisome for me. I've never done an engine swap like this. I've done engine swaps where the engine going in is more or less the same as the one going out (1915cc VW engine into a 1600cc VW beetle). After they're in, I should be able to move fairly quickly. Granted there are still a lot of unknowns. ie: fuel delivery, exhaust routing, wiring and ecu, power steering plumbing, radiator... the list goes on. haha. I'm going to lean on some of my local friends to hopefully guide me in fabricating the powertrain mounts. I still want to try to be able to drive it by the end of summer. I'm excited to start on the interior and doing all the finishing details like lights, gauges, bedliner, winch, etc. But that all will have to wait.

moving the bed


the rust hole in the back of the cab


section removed and prepped


new piece welded in


lots of grinding and paint later! Something about a grinder and some paint? haha




I did under the cab and the firewall as well. I'll probably do the wheel arches and back of the core support eventually.


 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
In anticipation of installing the powertrain and building mounts, I decided to piece the powertrain together. I started with bolting on my new clutch assembly that I got from work.



I had some trouble getting the pilot bearing out of the flywheel but the "pack it with grease to hydraulically move it" trick kind of worked. Well, I wound up accidentally tapping the bearing into the crank, so I had to remove the flywheel
. The rest went fairly smoothly. Wound up "sourcing" one of my pressure plate to flywheel bolts from the dodge in the driveway (I knew I kept it around for a reason!).



I finally fruitlessly tried to get the trans and engine to mate. When it's all on wheels, it's like trying to push two like-poled magnets together. I'll just have to wait for a friend to help me. After that's on, I'll bolt on the tcase, probably scrub down the trans in the driveway, then try to fit it all into the truck! It's getting exciting!

this was as close as I got.

 

old_man

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
Loveland, Colorado
First Name
Tom
Last Name
Houston
Member #

8300

Ham Callsign
WØNUT
Too bad you aren't local, I would love to help on the build. I have a full metal and machine shop and love reviving old iron. My Cherokee is 35 years old.
 
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old_man

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
Loveland, Colorado
First Name
Tom
Last Name
Houston
Member #

8300

Ham Callsign
WØNUT
Chugging pretty good with a 4.7L stroker at over 300hp. I got pulled over by a state trooper going up a very long hill on the interstate here doing 94 mph (which is where it likes to cruise). He didn't write me a ticket, he just wanted to know how I did it since his XJ could only muster 55 mph. We ended up talking along the highway for probably 30 minutes.
 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
Chugging pretty good with a 4.7L stroker at over 300hp. I got pulled over by a state trooper going up a very long hill on the interstate here doing 94 mph (which is where it likes to cruise). He didn't write me a ticket, he just wanted to know how I did it since his XJ could only muster 55 mph. We ended up talking along the highway for probably 30 minutes.
that's impressive! you're lucky he didn't ticket you. haha.
 

Rusty burbin

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
92509
Member #

4084

Chugging pretty good with a 4.7L stroker at over 300hp. I got pulled over by a state trooper going up a very long hill on the interstate here doing 94 mph (which is where it likes to cruise). He didn't write me a ticket, he just wanted to know how I did it since his XJ could only muster 55 mph. We ended up talking along the highway for probably 30 minutes.
That's awesome!
 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
In preparation for test fitting the powertrain tomorrow, I decided to install the brake booster and MC, heater box, and power steering box. I want to know what my limits are a little better when lining everything up.

The heater box just bolted back up but the other two gave me a bit more of an issue. The booster is out of a wagoneer and pseudo bolts up. It needs two more holes and I was having awful luck with my drill and my bolt hole alignment. I did my best for the two new holes but I had to enlarge two of them since I missed by a mil or so. Also, for those of you who have done this, how did you switch out push rods? The 715 has a much larger eye and pin on the pedal. I'm thinking it might just be easiest to weld the old eye-ring on the new push rod.



The power steering box was another animal entirely. I got a unit from a J20 and I wanted to use all 4 mount bolts. I marked where I needed to drill and cut 3 new holes in the frame. They didn't line up the best bust close enough to work. I sleeved it with some pipe and welded it in. Should be pretty stout. I can't wait to get all this truck back on the road and now it's starting to feel kind of like a car agin!




The heater box will come back out for paint and a new heater core.
 
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joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
This weekend I was able to test fit part of the powertrain but it wasn't without it's hiccups. The first problem was just getting the trans to mate to the engine. Apparently it's a pretty tight fit and it took some convincing to make it work. We tried to get the tcase to bolt to the trans and we discovered that we needed to notch a hole for one of the shift forks. We did that only to discover the bolt pattern on the adapter is wrong. I'm reaching out to Advance Adapters to see what the deal is.
Despite this, I decided to test fit the engine anyways just to see where everything lined up. Shortly after getting it in, it became apparent that the aftermarket headers that came with the engine had to go. They have a loop that goes up and straight into the booster, heater core, and firewall. I'll have to find some OE headers and that's looking to be difficult. After we removed the manifolds, we were able to get a better idea of where things needed to be.





In order to get the engine back and up a little more, I'm going to have to :massage" the firewall a bit. I also need to remove the old heat shields and trans mounts. After all that, I might get better clearance. The wagoneer booster might still be a problem. I may have to go to a summit/jegs 7" booster to get a little more room. Lastly, it looks like i need to re-position the steering box brace. it's too close to the crank pulley for comfort.




At least the shifter comes out at and ok point. haha


I knew that I would have some issues but this was a lot more than expected. I think it's really the tcase issue that's got me the most frustrated. Everything else is normal for shoe-horning a large engine into a place it was never designed to go. The plan for this week is to remove the trans mounts, old tcase mounts, heat shield, steering box brace, and massage the firewall. next weekend I should get a better fit.
 

Rusty burbin

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
92509
Member #

4084

This weekend I was able to test fit part of the powertrain but it wasn't without it's hiccups. The first problem was just getting the trans to mate to the engine. Apparently it's a pretty tight fit and it took some convincing to make it work. We tried to get the tcase to bolt to the trans and we discovered that we needed to notch a hole for one of the shift forks. We did that only to discover the bolt pattern on the adapter is wrong. I'm reaching out to Advance Adapters to see what the deal is.
Despite this, I decided to test fit the engine anyways just to see where everything lined up. Shortly after getting it in, it became apparent that the aftermarket headers that came with the engine had to go. They have a loop that goes up and straight into the booster, heater core, and firewall. I'll have to find some OE headers and that's looking to be difficult. After we removed the manifolds, we were able to get a better idea of where things needed to be.





In order to get the engine back and up a little more, I'm going to have to :massage" the firewall a bit. I also need to remove the old heat shields and trans mounts. After all that, I might get better clearance. The wagoneer booster might still be a problem. I may have to go to a summit/jegs 7" booster to get a little more room. Lastly, it looks like i need to re-position the steering box brace. it's too close to the crank pulley for comfort.




At least the shifter comes out at and ok point. haha


I knew that I would have some issues but this was a lot more than expected. I think it's really the tcase issue that's got me the most frustrated. Everything else is normal for shoe-horning a large engine into a place it was never designed to go. The plan for this week is to remove the trans mounts, old tcase mounts, heat shield, steering box brace, and massage the firewall. next weekend I should get a better fit.
Wow man, it's a pain in the butt but it will be so sweet when its done! It's a good thing you have this build thread because the only people that will appreciate this are folks that have built their own rig themselves.

When I built my old Suburban, which is like the Taj Mahal in comparison to your rig for under cab space. I put an overdrive trans and doubler t-case that added about 20" to my driveline length. It didn't fit under the trans tunnel. My solution was to bring the entire driveline forward 2" and use a "BFH" to "massage" the tunnel a bit. The t-case still makes contact the tunnel in the very back when I start twisting the frame around on the trail but it's been fine for a couple years now.


Anyhow, great build! I can't wait to see more! IMG_20190423_170111_530.jpg20170617_174401.jpgIMG_20190218_214026_051.jpg
 

Rusty burbin

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
92509
Member #

4084

Wow man, it's a pain in the butt but it will be so sweet when its done! It's a good thing you have this build thread because the only people that will appreciate this are folks that have built their own rig themselves.

When I built my old Suburban, which is like the Taj Mahal in comparison to your fig for under cab space. I put a on overdrive trans and doubler t-case that added about 20" to my driveline length. It didn't fit under the trans tunnel. My solution to bring the entire driveline forward 2" and use a "BFH" to "massage" the tunnel a bit. The t-case still makes contact the tunnel in the very back when I start twisting the frame around on the trail but it's been fine for a couple years now.


Anyhow, great build! I can't wait to see more! View attachment 95050View attachment 95051View attachment 95052
Did I say fig?! Lol-your *RIG!
 

joe.schigel

Rank V

Advocate I

1,460
Detroit, MI
I made a little progress last night. After getting into contact with Advance Adapters, I realized that I lost part of the instructions and I did need to drill some new holes. So I drilled holes and the adapter mounts up perfectly! Now I just need a new gasket to replace the one I ruined when I removed the adapter from the Tcase.

 

Rusty burbin

Rank VI
Member

Advocate I

3,857
92509
Member #

4084

thanks! making me kind of want to paint my trans... but I really just want it all to work at this point. Has your rig been fine because it self clearanced? haha.
It's fine. No issues, although I'm gonna separate the cab and chassis next fall and do a few little things I missed when I originally did the build.