M151 Rock Buggy Build

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M151 Rock Buggy Build

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M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby muttman » August 9th, 2009, 9:19 pm

Howdy Yall,
I'm new to this forum, but I thought you guys might get a kick out of my current project. I would love to hear comments and suggestions from fellow M-151 fans as this build is far from complete. Never done much research, but I think my Mutt is an A1, the data tag on the dash said 1964, and it had the double bumpstops on the rear suspension arms.

I have a full build thread on Pirate4x4.com that yall can check out if your interested: http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=805076

Disclaimer: I am building my M-151 into an extreme rock crawling rig, which involves extensively chopping it up - with the intent to drive it hard. So if you're a military vehicle purist, hit the back button now.

When I bought the Mutt about 5 yrs ago, I knew virtually nothing about them; but I have always been an avid offroader, so I quickly learned to appreciate the awesome offroad performance of the M-151's. The Mutt was amazing offroad even in stock form, but being the type that can't leave anything stock, I knew it had more potential.

This is pretty much what I started with (except the snorkle). It actually looks decent in the pics, but believe me it was far beyond repair. The only thing connecting the front half to the back half was the upper "rail" of the transmission tunnel, virtually everything below that was gone, not rusted out, but gone. Half of the pinch welds on the unibody were busted loose, the bed was rusted out, and of course every bushing and bearing in the drivetrain and suspension was worn out or missing alltogether. After a few mild offroad trips I realized that with 6 inches of flex in the unibody, it was only a matter of time before the thing buckled in the middle, so I started modifying it.
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The first set of mods was to replace a few major components in the suspension and drivetrain, build new floorboards, install a ROPS, lift it enough to clear 36" double beadlocked, hummer wheels and tires, and swap the crappy rear suspension for another front suspension assembly (like they should have been originally). I welded the diffs and wheeled the piss out of it, but soon realized the factory suspension and gearing didn't like the hardcore rock trails and big tires (big suprise).
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I scored a D44 and 9" axles from a '78 Ford f150 and decided to do a solid axle conversion for better articulation, durability, parts availability, and gearing. The axles are running spools and 5.43 gears, and if that isn't enough gear I'll build a 9" front axle and run 7.50 gears. I kept the engine and transmission because they are compact, light, and well - I already had them. The Zenith carb was nothing but problems and I didn't like sitting on a leaky gas tank so I converted it to propane with a Got Propane(brand name) kit for a Suzuki Samurai, which suprisingly bolts right on, and can support up to 100 hp. There is no comparison between the carb and propane, now I have perfect throttle response, smoother idle, and reliable starting in any weather. An added bonus is now I can store it for 100 years and fire it up with the same fuel. It is also obviously converted to full hydraulic steering (using a GM Saginaw pump), and I plan to swap the points for electronic ignition. I previously converted it to 12 volt, then realized 24 volt is better all around, so I will be running a one wire, 24v delco alternator.

Here are a few older pics of the current build. I decided to go with a one link suspension with a transverse leafspring to locate the axle side to side. The suspension is my own design and should allow for mucho articulation and should be able to absorb big hits when I catch air. Everything is just tacked together for now.
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The one link suspension has the added benefit of protecting the driveshafts. It will eventually have full leaf spring packs, I am using the main leaf only for mockup.
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This is a drawing I did of the front and rear suspensions(not exact), this will help show how the springs keep the axles centered, as it is difficult to see in the pics.
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Here you can see the 7" section of the windshield frame I cut out. Trying to keep the center of gravity as low as possible.
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As you may have noticed, this is an extremely low budget build that will be completed for far less than $5000 counting the initial purchase of the Mutt. The chassis is 1.25" SCH40 pipe, and the suspension is 1.5" SCH80, all bent on a $79 Harbor Freight pipe kinker.This is basically where I am at now; I am currently mocking up the rear suspension and finishing up the cage/chassis. It will have about a 106" wheelbase and is 78" outside of tire to outside of tire. I am building a 2 peice rear driveshaft with a carrier bearing to keep the belly flat.
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Now lets hear what you G838 guys think about it.
muttman
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby sarmadq » August 10th, 2009, 12:27 am

Howdy & finally there's someone who not only thinks alike, but went ahead with it too :)

Sounds awesome ......... haven't seen the pics as yet as the network seems to be having some problems, but just reading it tells of a Muscle MUTT. There are lots of MVs out there, we need a retro-style MUTT for a change. I'm sick of seeing verticle grills on the rock crawlers.

Good going man, Keep it up and keep on posting. I'll see the pics and maybe have a few queries of my own.
Sam
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Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away, Know when to Run !
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There'll be time enough for counting
When the deal is Done !......
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby toptiger » August 10th, 2009, 4:06 am

where is hummer killer, this is right down his alley
Author M-151 MUTT, The Vietnam Jeep
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby rickf » August 10th, 2009, 5:32 am

This is not HK's type of fabrication. His is all straight pieces of angle iron and cut up truck frames with no geometry involved. ie, no strength.
I invited Muttman over from the other G since I knew some of us would get a kick out of his project.


Rick
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby toptiger » August 10th, 2009, 6:01 am

you did well, rick,
say did i ever tell you about my sleeping arrangements in VN?
Author M-151 MUTT, The Vietnam Jeep
Paper edition http://www.blurb.com/books/1646321
IOS ebook iBookstore: http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id598605516
2 M151A2s, M416 trailer, M274A5 Mule,
Former Army Aviator, Bien Hoa, VN 1968-69
Mustang Gunship Platoon Commander
68th Assault Helicopter Company 'Top Tigers'
Central Florida and France
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby rickf » August 10th, 2009, 8:49 am

The only thing you didn't tell me about your sleeping arrangements was her name. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
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12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby moose53 » August 10th, 2009, 9:19 am

rickf wrote:The only thing you didn't tell me about your sleeping arrangements was her name. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Rick


spoken like a grunt lol thinking singular....

the correct question of a flier would be: what was their names hehehehe


Jim
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1971 G838-M151A2 1966 G857-M416
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby muttman » August 10th, 2009, 10:06 am

Hey guys,
I'm ignorant when it comes to setting the timing of a vehicle, so I have a few questions - maybe yall can help me out.

1. Do you have to have a 24v timing light, or can I just use an extra battery to power a conventional 12v timing light?

2. The tag on the engine has the spark advance stamped on it, but the crank pulley only has one notch on it. So how do you accurately set the timing without the degrees marked on the crank pulley?

3. Is the electronic ignition kit worth it, or should I just keep the points?
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby rickf » August 10th, 2009, 11:01 am

Yes to the 12 volt light and battery.
Line up the pointer with the notch, If you have an advance timing light make sure it is set to zero.
Considering the use you are going to be giving it I would go with electronic and carry a spare distributor with points. Have the points already set and pop the distributor in and set the timing ahead of time, scribe a line on the distributor housing and mount. That way if you have a problem with the electronic all you have to do is take out one bolt and one wire and switch. Line it up with the line and you are set to go, about ten minutes.
You will have to make up a plug wire since the timing light will not work on the shielded wire. Just grab an old wire off of any older car, cut the ends and strip back a little and push it in the hole in the distributor and plug. NOTE, this is only for timing.


Rick
1964 M151A1
1984 M1008
1967 M416
04/1952 M100
12/1952 M100- Departed
AN/TSQ-114A Trailblazer- Gone
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby moose53 » August 10th, 2009, 12:11 pm

the mark is 6" BTC not 0 thats why if you have a timing light w/advance set it to 0 just line em up. ditto what Rick said, you have to buy or make an adapter for the timing light pickup to work on the mutt as the wires are shielded so well the induction pickup wont work

Jim
Zigzag50, Northeast51, KC2QDZ
MVPA # 30032 G838.org

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1971 G838-M151A2 1966 G857-M416
1968 G748-M101A1 1976 G748-M116A1
1990 MEP-701A

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Real jeeps have horizontal grille slots
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby Motorcityman » August 10th, 2009, 12:25 pm

Great looking build, I hope to see some OD paint on that badboy, maybe straight sand with OD wheels or accents. I relize not much is left military on this buggy but a straight up military paint job would look killer at offroad rallies. I like how you filet the ends of the square tube to a point. I'm going to have to try that out, what do you do just cut out triangles on each side and bend them together and weld?
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby muttman » August 10th, 2009, 1:20 pm

Thanks for the info. Rick and Jim.

I would have never realized the notch was at +6 deg. already, and I definately could see myself getting frusterated by not knowing about the wire shielding. Yall just saved me a lot of time (and cussing).

Rick I really like the idea of a spare dist. - there's nothing worse than hauling your rig to an offroad park for a weekend of fun, only to have some $10 part blow the whole trip.

I may have to advance the timing a little for the propane, but that will just be trial and error trying to get as much advance as possible while still allowing hot starts.
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby muttman » August 10th, 2009, 1:33 pm

Motorcityman wrote:Great looking build, I hope to see some OD paint on that badboy, maybe straight sand with OD wheels or accents. I relize not much is left military on this buggy but a straight up military paint job would look killer at offroad rallies. I like how you filet the ends of the square tube to a point. I'm going to have to try that out, what do you do just cut out triangles on each side and bend them together and weld?



I'm leaning toward flat sand, although I love olive-drab. I can't decide between flat sand everything (wheels, axles, suspension, interior, everything) or flat sand body with flat black accents (like the rollcage, bumpers, suspension, and wheels). Tell me what yall think I should do.

The pointed square tubing is just cut into triangles, beat together, welded, and ground smooth. I used a porta-band to do the cutting. I chose to use a lot of square tube in this build because I wanted to be a little different from everyone else, and I think it matches the boxy style of the M151, also it makes fabrication much easier (less tube notching).
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby muttman » August 10th, 2009, 2:21 pm

Many of you may think my M151 will not have enough power or low enough gears to turn the 36" tires on rugged terrain, which makes sense seeing as it has no low range. This was/is a huge concern of mine because I am building this thing around the the original engine/trans, and it would not be easy to change to another powerplant. When I started this project, I strongly considered using another small 4 cylinder engine/trans/t-case combo from a newer Jeep, Toyota, or Suzuki. There were a few reasons I decided to keep the original powerpack:

1. I don't care if it runs 100 times better, putting a Jap engine in a M151 is just wrong.

2. More than likely I wouldn't be able to find a trans/t-case that would fit in the transmission tunnel without hanging down a lot - killing the ground clearance.

3. It actually performed fairly well at Grey Rock ORV Park in Alabama with the 36" tires and factory 4.89 gears even on the hardcore trails, so I figure with 5.43 gears in the new axles it should do even better.

4. The original engine makes awesome low end torque esp. on propane, which fits my driving style (pick a gear and floor it).

5. It was free.

I currently live in South TX, but went to school in AL, and hopefully will be moving back there soon because that is where all the good offroading is. As with any vehicle, the terrain it will be driving on, along with driving style will dictate how it is built. I am building the M151 for southeast type wheelin, short bursts up steep, muddy rocks. The way it is being built right now would not be good for slow technical rock crawling like in Moab, UT. Basically, in the southeast you want a vehicle that is low, wide and geared high enough to get some momentum to "bump" it up over obstacles. With my current setup the overall crawl ratio will be about 31:1, which is about the same as a stock 3/4 ton pickup with an automatic trans in low range. The only reason I went with 5.43 gears in the diffs is because that is the lowest gearset available for the Dana 44 front axle. Like I said earlier, if I do need lower gears in the future I can convert a Ford 9" rear axle to a front axle using Dana 60 knuckles; gearsets go all the way to 7.50 for the Ford 9".
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Re: M151 Rock Buggy Build

Postby gpready » August 10th, 2009, 10:29 pm

Awesome build Muttman!

Joe 8)
1976 M151A2 USMC
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