1959 Cab Over Jeep, Willys 4x4 qustins
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Thread: 1959 Cab Over Jeep, Willys 4x4 qustins

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    Default 1959 Cab Over Jeep, Willys 4x4 qustins

    i am looking to buld this jeep up be thinking about putting a 4bt or 6bt in it dont know much about them i want to be abel to do high way speeds and be abel to do some good wheeling too. what trany and transefer case whould some of you recomend this is going to be my first project like this and am clules it going to be great
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    I reccommend picking something a little easier than a cabover for a first project.

    There are many obstacles to getting a diesel engine into the FC Jeeps. The engine might fit, without a lot of reworking the cab, but I rather doubt it. The original engines were rather compact, especially in height, where you are going to have your worst problems.

    Additionally, the FC Jeeps were not designed for "good wheelin'" They were designed as compact utility vehicles which could still manage a payload.


    If you want to build a good wheeling rig, with a diesel, then go with a later model TJ or YJ variant.

    By all means, if the price is right, buy the FC, but it is not the best rig for your stated goals, and would gather as much attention and appreciation, as a restored stocker.

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    I like the FCs(but haven't owned one) and I agree with dahoyle here, this likely would be a challenging swap and end up not meeting your expectations without a large amount of modifications done to the rest of the truck too.

    Ken

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    Hey,Rag,you may be better off to sell/trade the FC,and get a longer Jeep CJ7,or Wrangler.That FC has a very short wb,and may pose a few problems fitting the 4BT in it.There was a recent article on a built FC in one of the Jeep mags,and he had so many obstacles in his build..I would hate to see a good FC cut up,and never done.......just my thoughts on it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IHWillys View Post
    I like the FCs(but haven't owned one) and I agree with dahoyle here, this likely would be a challenging swap and end up not meeting your expectations without a large amount of modifications done to the rest of the truck too.
    x2

    I concur with this evaluation... restore it proper and make some cash-- (if you currently own it) something different for your first project...

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    I dunno- There was a military version with a 3cyl diesel, just about impossible to find parts for now though. When you get down to it, though, what you want is what you want-
    Here's one with an OM617 Mercedes engine:
    http://bb.bc4x4.com/showthread.php?t=123204

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4x4_Welder View Post
    I dunno- There was a military version with a 3cyl diesel, just about impossible to find parts for now though. When you get down to it, though, what you want is what you want-
    Here's one with an OM617 Mercedes engine:
    http://bb.bc4x4.com/showthread.php?t=123204
    There is going to be considerable difference in fitting an engine that fit up under a Mercedes hood, as compared to fitting a 4BT. Figure that the Cummins is probably close to a foot taller overall. The major obstacle is not in the chassis work, but rather the custom body work that will be involved in making everything fit inside the cab.

    I am a firm believer in the do what you want philosophy, but at the same time, I am a much stronger believer in the admit your limitations, and don't trash a rare vehicle, point of view.

    If he wants a wheeler, then there are many thousands or millions of much more capable vehicles. If he wants a really nice, unique, rig, then the FC would be a great place to start, but I am not in favor of "practicing" on it to learn the tricks of the trade, and I sure as hell would not be in favor of "wheeling" it. It was never built to wheel. Even the military variants were used for hauling parts and people around the flight line.

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    This is an interesting discussion of the age old question? "do I restore it or Mod it?"

    There are many FC's still around. They enjoy a limited following mainly due to the fact that they are just Butt Ugly!! As we all know "Ugly" can be cool.

    The short WB single cab versions are the most plentyful. The really cool ,and also most rare ones are the Crewcab long WB models which were used mainly by the Air Force as Crew and flight line vehicles.

    None of them are in anyway to be considered good offroad vehicles, and there is very little you could do to one to make it into a decent wheeler. I guess you could unscrew the steering wheel and drive a TJ under it.

    However they can be built in to very useful towrigs or light offroad (dirt road) type or bad weather terrain vehicles. One could be set up as a Expedition type vehicle with an Alaskan camper, which I think would be cool for a trip into Canada or the far north. Or as a hunting vehicle.

    There is a website: www.thefcconnection.com which has pictures of about 500 different vehicles. My personal favorite is the Black Crewcab with the dual wheels on the back. The guy that ownes it Jesse Ybarra(Phoenix AZ) has been looking at replacing the 350 Chev motor with a 4BT. He uses it mainly as a tow vehicle. It is a very cool vehicle!

    Fred Williams, the tech guy for Petersons 4wd mag has a crewcab version also, and is looking at putting either a 4 or 6BT in it. It is in the December issue of Petersons 4wd mag. Fred is a first rate fabricator and in addition has access to many services and sources for parts that most do not. So this job would be much easier for someone who has the full resources of a magazine group to tap, rather than regular you and me who have to fight for every part.

    Any way you look at it you are looking at a 100% redo which will take you 2-5 years to complete, and cost a significant amount of money. I see $30K easy. You better like what you end up with and use the hell out of it, because you will be married to it. There is a very narrow market for this type of vehicle and I can safely say there is almost no possibility you will not get out of it anything close to what you put into it.

    My personal opinion on the decision to restore or hotrod lies in the overall condition of the vehicle you are starting with. If it is nice to begin with then restore it. Because you can then sell it. If it is like the one in the pics (and most are) above with the MBZ motor then I see no reason to not modify it so you can use it for something other than a vehicle to attend FC rallies with. If you change it to make it more useful and you finish the project and it does what you want, then I say, knock yourself out.

    If you just destroy it, then you suck, and need to be kicked! Like they say they ain't makin' them anymore, and if you can''t make it better, then sell it to someone who can and do something else.

    A 4BT or a 6BT will fit but you will have to heavily modify the frame, and the floor of the cab will also have to be modified considerably, the entire drivetrain will have to be changed, look at some build ups here at the site to see what types of drivetrains you can assemble. I would not do a short WB FC150 at all. They are basically a CJ5, and are not going to be good for anything in the way of towing, but they are cute. The FC170's are basically CJ6's and are better, but the best and most useful is the Crewcab as it has the longest wheelbase. You can put 4-5 people in it and still have a 6ft bed to load up.

    It is a doable project, but it will not be an easy project.

    You need to really asses your finances and skill level before you jump off this cliff.

    Here's some pics to show you what is possible. The first 2 are the same truck,and now it has polished aluminum dually wheels on it. The 6 wheel one is a diamond in the rough, and they also made a van/camper version. I bet the green one's name is "Kermit". You can spend an entire afternoon on this website there is alot to look at.

    Randy
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    Last edited by W.R.Buchanan; 11-29-2009 at 02:48 PM.
    DeScrambler: Built from scratch, 4BT,TH400, USGear OD, Atlas 4.3, HP D44/ 4.10 ARB, HP D60/4.10 ARB, 37" MTR's

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    Since a FC is basically a very tall CJ, wouldn't fitting a 4/6BT require pretty much changing everything under the body (axles, transmission, transfer case, massive reinforcement of the frame...)?

    But I do agree that a 4BT-powered FC would be VERY cool.
    Last edited by Mikel; 11-29-2009 at 02:19 PM.
    1963 Jeep J300, 4BT/NV4500/NP200/D61/D71
    1969 Jeep M715 6x6 project, 6BTA/NV4500/NP205/D60/D70/D70

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    I agree wholeheartedly, that it would be a sweet rig with a 4BT in it. My only observation is that it probably isn't the best for a beginner, as, along with the obvious powertrain/drivetrain mods and fabrication, you are also going to have to rework the tunnel to make room for it, and once complete, it would still be totally unsuited for wheeling.

    The question of whether or not they are rare, well, sufice it to say they didn't build many of them, and they aren't building any more. It isn't rare like say a Dussenburg, but it isn't exactly common either.

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    thank you. the money isnt a prob. its going to take time i just got back frome over seas and was hurt to the pont of med. retierment and way to much free time at 28. i bult a 62 cj-5 willys when i was 18 i know i am going to have a hard time with alot of it and i saw the f c in top truck challeng i love how ugly it is
    if you google search for "fc jeep top truck 2009" that it will show u. i dont want to buld it the same the got probly got 20 grand in it. if i can do it for under 10 i will be happy 10-15 grand 3 years tops. but i been a toos up on motors i dont know any thing about desel tho thanks you ever one for the advise and help
    allan if i do it i will be here asking lots of qustens

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    Mikel: YES! Everything!

    In fact maybe just installing the body on a 4WD Dodge diesel pickup frame might be the cheapest, and by far easiest way to go here. I see these trucks for sale all the time in the Auto Trader for $2500 to 5K .

    and since nothing under the old one is worth messing with, what the hey. sounds like a good idea to me?

    Randy
    Last edited by W.R.Buchanan; 11-29-2009 at 02:59 PM.
    DeScrambler: Built from scratch, 4BT,TH400, USGear OD, Atlas 4.3, HP D44/ 4.10 ARB, HP D60/4.10 ARB, 37" MTR's

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    probably a toyota engine can be a good option, because there are some toyota forward-control diesel vans with a simillar engine bay size...

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    Quote Originally Posted by W.R.Buchanan View Post
    Mikel: YES! Everything!

    In fact maybe just installing the body on a 4WD Dodge diesel pickup frame might be the cheapest, and by far easiest way to go here. I see these trucks for sale all the time in the Auto Trader for $2500 to 5K .

    and since nothing under the old one is worth messing with, what the hey. sounds like a good idea to me?

    Randy
    That would probably be the easiest possibility. I'm just not sure how gigantic a body lift would be required to fit the FC cab over the Dodge frame/powertrain. The dodge is gigantic compared to a FC.
    Some time spent with a tape measure should pay off mightily.
    Last edited by Mikel; 11-29-2009 at 04:35 PM.
    1963 Jeep J300, 4BT/NV4500/NP200/D61/D71
    1969 Jeep M715 6x6 project, 6BTA/NV4500/NP205/D60/D70/D70

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    Those FC's were equipped with the F-head 134 4 cylinders weren't they? If so then you would hae the best luck with an engine of similar size. Have you looked at the 1.6-1.9l VW Turbo Diesels? They're available in electronic and mechanical, and with something around 70 hp, and 100 ftlbs, they're about the same power level as the old 134's, but are much, much more efficient and hey, they're diesel. I bet with a little upgrading-Turbo, Injectors, ect. You could make a lot more power.

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    I love them. It's like an ugly old dog... gotta love em! No matter what engine you put in there it's cool to me. A few weeks ago I posted on here that I spotted one and couple weeks ago I spotted another one locally with a small block chevy stuffed in there. I think a 4B would fit but it would be some work, that's for sure.
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    I dunno that putting a 4BT in one would appeal to me in the least, so I won`t beat that horse one way or the other as I would be biased against it, but I gotta chime in on the not good wheeler part.

    A fc will probably never be a competitive rockcrawler or extreme machine as there center of gravity is just too high for odd angles and such, but built and wheeled with a modicum of sanity, I think one could make a great offroad machine for certain types of terrain. The approach angle is not that bad compared to a CJ, and by the time you lift it high enough for decent tires, the clearance is not to bad, and manouveribility will be better than a conventional chassis with the same size bed, as long as you keep the high CG in mind.

    If you want a 4x4 to actually get you places and not just conquer every rockpile and rut you come across while trying to break $500 worth of parts every time you go out, I would think it would be a fun little truck. I drove past too many trucks with lockers, 40" tires and a big-block that were stuck in the mud with my little bronco two, because I knew what my truck could handle and went around, to think an FC can`t get to the end of most of the trails around here.

    Sorry about that folks. I`ll try and restrain myself and put the beatin` stick away now........

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    the FC are all basically Mid 60's CJ's.. That means D44 rears with pressed together axles and D25 fronts which are kind of weak. Point being they would have to have everything under the cab changed out or redone to be a decent 4 wheeler. The high CG doesn't help but it's not the end of the world either. I don't see doing any of the 4+ trails in Moab with one but I can see doing 3+ trails. The truck just has lower limits than a CJ does.

    One point though, Going down the Lions Back or any really steep incline in a cab over truck will probably scare the crap out of you,,,,literally and permanently.

    I see many uses for these trucks up to and including mild offroading, but the truck has limits. One of the big negaitves on these vehicles is "crash survivability". There is of course,,,,, NONE, ZERO, you gonna die! But at least you'd look good doing it!

    Here is some pics of a before and after of one of the cooler ones an M677. It now has a Vortec 454, and is used as a tow vehicle in the Colorado Springs area. There is an FC150 in the trailer!

    Another idea would be to put a Fifth Wheel or Gooseneck in the bed and tow a Horse or Hotrod trailer. Kind of an FC tractor.

    Randy
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    Quote Originally Posted by W.R.Buchanan View Post
    the FC are all basically Mid 60's CJ's.. That means D44 rears with pressed together axles and D25 fronts which are kind of weak. Point being they would have to have everything under the cab changed out or redone to be a decent 4 wheeler. The high CG doesn't help but it's not the end of the world either. I don't see doing any of the 4+ trails in Moab with one but I can see doing 3+ trails. The truck just has lower limits than a CJ does.

    One point though, Going down the Lions Back or any really steep incline in a cab over truck will probably scare the crap out of you,,,,literally and permanently.

    I see many uses for these trucks up to and including mild offroading, but the truck has limits. One of the big negaitves on these vehicles is "crash survivability". There is of course,,,,, NONE, ZERO, you gonna die! But at least you'd look good doing it!

    Here is some pics of a before and after of one of the cooler ones an M677. It now has a Vortec 454, and is used as a tow vehicle in the Colorado Springs area. There is an FC150 in the trailer!

    Another idea would be to put a Fifth Wheel or Gooseneck in the bed and tow a Horse or Hotrod trailer. Kind of an FC tractor.

    Randy
    On the weak drivetrain end of things, if you are gentle, 2 piece axleshafts and D25s have gone more places than I plan on going, not to mention that thousands of people have upgraded running gear under early CJ`s, and don`t break a sweat over the ordeal, and I haven`t heard anyone recently deny that early CJ`s are good off-road and I realize we are also talking a heavier rig here.

    As for the 4+ and 3+ trail stuff, I can`t argue that. I`m a country bumpkin. I have no idea what those ratings mean, other than that they are ratings. We navigate by going "three turns past the tin shack, around that deadfall and through that hole we buried them three fords in"

    As for steep grades being scary, I heard Jeep started putting iron counterweights behind the rear axle on the single cabs to keep them from nosing over

    As for surviving a crash, we all gotta die sometime, and it would be quite a site rolling through the pearly gates end-over-end in a jeep......

    I guess my completely uneducated advice would be if you want to wheel the thing, put the least amount of money possible into the engine (IE hold of on the diesel, willys engines go cheap as dirt `round here) until you get the rest of the rig where it will satisfy you off road, so far as axles, brakes, tires, lift and so on is concerned, then do the diesel. And then just stick a duramax in there, its not as tall

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    The two main types of FC's are the 150, and the 170.

    In a nutshell, the 150s were originally based off a CJ-5 frame. The 170's are a longer wheel base with a near 9' bed, came with the 226 I6, some had T98 4spd, had Dana 44 front, and Dana 53 rear. Basically the 150's were a overloaded CJ, and the 170's had drivetrains = to or better than the Willys trucks.

    Good luck with the Crew Cabs as approx 30 are known to exist and fetch high dollar.

    I have had 3 150s and currently own two FC170s. I am mid project on the install of a 4BTA in a Willys wagon, have thought about a 4bt in a FC and wince whenever I think about it. The flathead sixes are pretty tight in there, and I can't even imagine trying to deal with the Cummins noise.

    All in all, if I score a deal on another 4BT, you can bet your arse I will try to stuff one in a FC170.

    Estimate your time and money, then tripple it add a divorce, subtract you hair lost and knuckles skinned and you can get it done
    61 Willys Wagon, wagoneer frame, t18, 18 tcase, warn od, 35" BFG muds. 4BTA 120hp w/59k

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    Wow, I didn`t realize the crew cabs were that rare. A junkyard I used to work at up here has a fairly butchered one, and my dads friend used to have a crew cab with the original 3cyl cerlist diesel in it, and I`m pretty sure my dad knows were that one is.

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    Randy, the fifth picture you posted, the van bodied one, that's the best one. But then I have a soft spot for 4x4 vans.

    Ken

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    The current going prices for M677's IE crew cabs, is between $10-15 K depending on what condidtion the body is in. If the guy knows what he's got.

    They are for sale, if you are interested use the "contact us" bullet on the FC website listed above. They can steer you in the right direction.

    There are also got to be more than 30 of them out there. Hell there's pics of more than 30 of them on the FC website's gallery. I would think Kaiser made at least 500 to justify a run and the tooling costs. Who knows what lurks in the barns of the mid west?

    They are definately something cool and like I've said numerous times they could be made into a very useful vehicle.

    3+ trails can be done in stock Jeep type vehicles with little or no body damage, 4+ trails will probably get you some scratches and dings.

    The 4+ trails have by far the highest amount of "pucker factor". IE steep climbs and decents, and off camber/side hill sections, and sections that go really close to the edge of big drop offs. These situations make your taint pucker. It's exilerating.

    Going down the Lions Back in a cab over vehicle would be like sky diving while hanging in front of the instructor. The lowest portion of the rock face is 45 degrees strait down, and everytime you hit the brakes, feeling the rear end getting light and coming over would definately get your attention..

    Been there done that. It was scary in my CJ5, I needed 4 stiff drinks to recover.

    Ken: That van is owned by a guy by the name of ''Jim in NY" I think he is a member of this site and has posted here many times. You might try PMing him.

    That van could be considered as the first "Sportmobile" IE: 4WD van type camper.

    Randy
    Last edited by W.R.Buchanan; 12-02-2009 at 01:39 PM.
    DeScrambler: Built from scratch, 4BT,TH400, USGear OD, Atlas 4.3, HP D44/ 4.10 ARB, HP D60/4.10 ARB, 37" MTR's

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    It's how well you do, what you don't know how to do.

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    I came across this pic a couple years ago. It's a little too much for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by J10Mike View Post
    I came across this pic a couple years ago. It's a little too much for me.
    it's insane... looks like a mahindra minibus... till some years ago mahindra was making the fc under license and using its base for a minibus range...

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    What about NPR 4x4 stuff going under one? Since its FC as well wouldn't it make things a little easier (we're talking relatively here, this is a hard project no matter how you slice it granted..)?

    Regards,

    Rev. D.

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    Quote Originally Posted by reverendd View Post
    What about NPR 4x4 stuff going under one?
    would be cool...


    what about forward-control pickups in the u.s.? in asia there's a lot of forwards from toyota, mitsubishi, and even ford... i know, flat-nose cabs in the u.s. aren't popular even in road trucks, but despite its reduced crashing zones they have some advantages...

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    Quote Originally Posted by W.R.Buchanan View Post
    Going down the Lions Back in a cab over vehicle would be like sky diving while hanging in front of the instructor. The lowest portion of the rock face is 45 degrees strait down, and everytime you hit the brakes, feeling the rear end getting light and coming over would definately get your attention..
    Randy
    FYI... not BYB (burst your bubble) :P you DO in fact hang in front of the instructor whilst skydiving ^_^

    but i agree with you on all counts...

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    That vehicle was originally used by and outfit called San Juan Jeep Tours back in the 60's and 70's. They did jeep tours around the Ouray/Telluride area for many years, and took truck loads of people up the Black Bear Pass, Engineer Pass, and the area and showed them scenery second to none on this planet. I hope to go there in my Jeep next year.


    I don't know for sure if that is the same vehicle with the dual tractor tires but I think my pic is the same vehicle. It is about to be restored which means it will probably be removed from the Military truck frame and tall axles it is on in these pics, and put back the way it was in the original pictures.

    Here is a bunch more pics of this and other FC's and the Mahindra Bus FJ460 talked about above.

    Once again if you guys are interested the website is www.thefcconnection.com All of these pics came from there and there is alot to look at and most of it is pretty cool stuff.

    Randy
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    Last edited by W.R.Buchanan; 12-02-2009 at 07:19 PM.
    DeScrambler: Built from scratch, 4BT,TH400, USGear OD, Atlas 4.3, HP D44/ 4.10 ARB, HP D60/4.10 ARB, 37" MTR's

    It's not how well you do what you know how to do.

    It's how well you do, what you don't know how to do.

  31. #30
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    Well darn. I suppose 30 seems like a pretty low number if I know where two are, but visions of absurd amounts of money for two rusty hulks was fun for a little while.

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