: 63 AMC Classic Pro Touring Build

03-30-2018, 05:43 PM
I bought this 63 classic in 2010 when I was 16. I drove it through high school in stock form. The paint started to come off, so I gave it a rustoleum paint job inspired by an art car I saw at the time. I think its awesome, and it has obviously always attracted a lot of attention.

I parked the car in 2012 and went to college for mechanical engineering. Through college I fantasized about turning the car into a cool pro-touring style daily driver. When hurricane Harvey hit Houston, the car was parked in my grandma's garage. Her house and the car flooded. After the waters receded, I took it as a sign I needed to start the project.

Dragging it out of the garage and onto the trailer was an adventure, but its at my house now

My plan is to re-do the interior similar to stock, for the old school feel. The sheet metal will stay stock, but the drivetrain and suspension will be totally replaced. I'll be removing the engine, tranny, rear end, front suspension, and subframe to replace them. I'm removing everything carefully and cleaning them up so others might be able to use them on their projects.

I plan to replace the suspension, and drivetrain with newer equipment from a late model donor car. I'm not settled on anything yet, but the engine will probably be something from the LS family.

Here's the car the day I pulled it back to my house, after a power washing to remove all the mud from the flood. You can kind of see the high water mark near the top of the windshield.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/794/40124714625_3f277856f2_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/248FDJz)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/248FDJz) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the car as it sits today

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/801/40124740045_22a0dce2bb_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/248FMhR)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/248FMhR) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

04-09-2018, 11:01 PM
I made some more progress this weekend. I pulled the engine and transmission out together. I cleaned them up and separated them. Then I tore the engine most of the way down to clean it, get the Pistons free, and check for damages.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/895/27482383628_840bd48049_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/HSwpbu)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/HSwpbu) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the crime scene left behind after pulling the drivetrain out.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/801/41353520041_888616cf5f_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/261gALR)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/261gALR) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the drivetrain after cleaning.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/899/27482387868_01e0a593d1_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/HSwqrA)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/HSwqrA) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the codes from the tranny

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/867/40458427365_63dd222fcb_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/24Db1Uv)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/24Db1Uv) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the top end after opening it up.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/786/40640015174_1beafaa49f_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGCN)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGCN) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the head without any cleaning.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/891/27482383518_366f010352_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/HSwp9A)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/HSwp9A) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's the bottom end after lots of degreaser.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/889/40640014844_60d79087c2_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGx7)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGx7) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's a sample cylinder. They all looked pretty much the same.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/793/40640014874_f2313c5e73_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGxC)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/24VdGxC) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Here's all the stuff I pulled off the engine to clean it up. After I was done cleaning I sprayed the hell out of everything with WD40. Then I re-assembled and just snugged everything up with two ugga-ugga's from the impact. Whoever takes the parts or the whole engine will need to do some more cleaning anyways. I just wanted to free the motor and stop any more decay.

https://farm1.staticflickr.com/902/27482383188_98c1fa2d02_b.jpg (https://flic.kr/p/HSwp3U)Untitled (https://flic.kr/p/HSwp3U) by asel.mike (https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/), on Flickr

Next up will be removing the front suspension, crossmember, etc. after that I'm gonna make one big post with everything I'm selling. Pretty much everything to do with drivetrain and suspension will be going.

04-13-2018, 12:52 AM
I've got a real nice 63 Ambassador 990 4 door you need!


04-13-2018, 01:29 AM
That engine looks great inside for having been submerged in a flood.

04-14-2018, 10:19 AM
I've got a real nice 63 Ambassador 990 4 door you need!


No, I've got a slightly used engine and tranny your ambassador needs! This dude named harvey cleaned them inside and out!

That engine looks great inside for having been submerged in a flood.

I was kind of surprised too. Of course the oil was a nasty mess, but the rest wasn't that bad.

04-15-2018, 10:19 PM
Yesterday I got the rest of the front suspension out of the car! I bought an oxy acetylene rig a little while ago and got to use it to help loose a few bolts, and cut a few that wouldn't come out. Definitely very happy to have it now!



Next step is to finish pulling the dash so I can repair some rust around the heater core/ rain gutter up there. Also gonna start working on gathering money/ parts to work on getting the new suspension fitted up.

04-22-2018, 11:44 PM
Well I found a smokin deal on a C4 suspension this week so I worked on that a little this week. Friday I left work in Beaumont early, picked up my tools, and drove to Waco to look at this beauty!


The owner even cut the frame in the front instead of unbolting it to speed things up


After we got everything loaded up he showed me his 57 Chevy truck he swapped the C4 suspension into using a fat man kit. I forgot to take pics, but that thing is gonna be sweet with a clear coated rusty panel look. I coulda chewed the cud with him for a long while, but I still had to drive 3 hours home. So I cut it short and got home around 1am.


I took everything home and pressure washed it. It's a Dana 36, which isn't the greatest. However I got it all for $400, which is a steal.
Next i started cutting the fender wells and front subframe. I plan on doing the front conversion the same way timberwolf is doing in this thread. http://theamcforum.com/forum/1964-rambler-classic-street-strip-conversion_topic90597_page1.html


His rambler inspired me to pick the C4 in the first place. The rear suspension I'll have to show some creativity, but with what a great job timberwolf is doing on his front I feel no need to innovate there.

04-27-2018, 07:26 PM
Cool man. Nobody can say that itís been done before thatís for sure. Iíll be following this.

05-07-2018, 12:19 AM
Just when I think I’ve seen the most Phucked up paint job, this jewel shows up. OP I dig your enthusiasm in this build and will be following along. I like the oddball car builds :supz:

05-07-2018, 06:54 PM
Cool man. Nobody can say that itís been done before thatís for sure. Iíll be following this.

Just when I think Iíve seen the most Phucked up paint job, this jewel shows up. OP I dig your enthusiasm in this build and will be following along. I like the oddball car builds :supz:

I'm glad y'all can appreciate it. It gets lots of attention, and lots of WTF looks!

I forgot to post my progress last weekend!

I got the new subframe tubes welded in last weekend. Everything is welded in and fishplated.


I had to cut the stock mounts off the C4 crossmember and cleaned it up to set up for the new mounts


I fitted and welded in the new mounts out of angle iron to match the stock C4 arm angles. I gussetted with 3/16 flat.


Then I drilled and sleeved my bolt holes to locate and hold in the front cross member.


And here's how it sits today. Next I need to clearance for the steering rack and fab up shock mounts.


05-29-2018, 12:11 AM
I got a little distracted the last couple of weekend. I worked on trimming trees, went to a wedding in OKC, and worked on projects at the house. Along with other things, I finished building our driveway gate and fence. I bought a spray gun, and sprayed the fence with rustoleum.


This weekend I worked on pouring a new concrete pad for the back porch. While I waited for it to dry this afternoon I decided to make some progress on the rambler!

I cut a clearance hole through the frame using a small cup as my template.


I test fit the drivers side suspension without the springs. This let me test the clearance on the tie rod through the new hole in the frame.

Once I checked the clearance I traced the same cup on the top of my work bench as a template for the insert. I didn't have any pipe or tube bigger than 2". So I cut some 1/8" sheet and bent it to match the hole I cut. I haven't made any special equipment to bend stuff with. I used the good old two wrenches and a bench vice method.


I checked my progress against the circle I drew on the bench. I kept bending until it matched pretty well.


I set the inserts aside, so I could do all my welding for the day at once.

Next I set myself to the task of installing the shock mount. I decided to re-use the one from the original Corvette frame, since I had it lying around, and I could use the holes in it to locate it prior to welding.

I attacked the old frame with a torch. I sweated, and cut, and sweated, and cut. I got the part I needed rough cut out.


I started coping the drivers side mount to fit the frame. I screwed that up BIG TIME. I cut my losses, and lopped off the bottom part of the mount. Then I bent up a new piece out of 1/8" sheet to replace the lower piece I screwed up. It's gonna do the job, but its not as pretty as I wanted. I rode that struggle bus all the way home.


After getting the first one fitted up, I cut the second one out and fitted it to the passenger side. I learned from my mistakes and the passenger side went to plan. It also went WAAAY faster.


Since I used the old suspension mount for the shock mount, I get the added benefit of bracing the crossmember.


I welded everything out, and called it a day. Next time I'll get the front suspension mocked back up and verify everything fits and moves as needed. Then I can start on mounting the rear suspension!

06-17-2018, 12:46 PM
It's been a little bit since my last post, but I haven't quit on the project. I've been working my butt off at work, going on vacation, and trying to make some progres on projects around the house. Something about summer increases my motivation on house projects.

To give this post some kind of car nature, here's a pic of my car I just traded in for. Its a 2015 Golf Tdi


07-09-2018, 10:34 PM
One of my best buddies came down from Iowa for a long weekend. We decided to make some progress on the rambler.
We decided to crank on the rear end, and get it as in as possible. We started by measuring the bat wing and figuring out how far back and how high up to mount it. We took lots of sketchy measurements of pictures of ramblers and pictures of the corvette I took when I bought the rear end. Then we did some figuring on what we thought the spring rates would be and made our best guess at the final ride height of the rambler. Time will tell if we were right or wrong. The whole time we were working on it, we were discussing ways to adjust the ride height later if we were wrong, so I feel confident I'll be able to get it set up right in the end.


First we built a crossmember with tabs to mount and locate the batwing.


Then we used our measurements to locate the Batwing cross member. We cut out the frame rails and the trunk to fit the cross member in the right place.


We tacked up the crossmember, but our fit up was pretty loose, so we made plans to make re-enforcement plates to weld in around the crossmember.


Then we hung the rear end from the cross member. This part taught me my next tool should be a tranny jack. We ended up lowering the car onto the rear end to mount it.


Next we started working on making our upper shock mounts. We decided to cope 3" square tube to the side of the frame, and cut the holes into the bottom of the tube.


Here's what they looked like before adding the weld nuts.


Before we tacked in the shock mounts, we welded up the re-enforcement plates around the crossmember on both sides of the frame members.


Then we welded in the shock mount tubes in front of the crossmember.


After that we took even more measurements of the old corvette geometry. We mapped out exactly where the trailing links need to mount for the rear suspension. That just leaves making those mounts and making sway bar mounts for front and rear. Then it'll be ready for wheels and tires to set on the ground for the first time!

07-12-2018, 09:55 AM
Cool to be diffrent coming along nice

07-14-2018, 11:35 AM
Thanks for the interest!

07-15-2018, 03:25 PM
I'm pretty confident when i say you don't see 4 door Ramblers built like this! lol If you're going to this level why not be really different and do a turbo 4.0 litre? Should be easy to find and build due to the big Jeep aftermarket. IMO it would get more attention at events than an LS which is in every other car....and is still AMC!

07-15-2018, 10:18 PM
I had a few hours this morning to work on the rambler, so I worked on the mounts for the trailing links. I started with a 2x2x1/8 angle and drilled the holes. Then I cut and welded in gussets.


I had to cut the mount to fit under the lip inside the wheel well where the frame meets the floor.

I got the mounts tacked into place using the marks we made last weekend to locate them. I wont fully weld either one until I can bolt everything up and verify the wheel locations are correct relative to the front. The trailing links will pull forward when I put in the bolts and tighten them. That will pull the wheel into the final location.


I wont be able to bolt everything up until I cut some clearance holes in the frame. The bolts going through the end of the links are interfering with the frame right now. I'm thinking of cutting the clearance holes and then sleeving them large enough for the nut to fit

On a different note, I'm starting to question my commitment to using an LS. I've been looking at a bunch of inline 4's and inline 6's, and they're very appealing. Any thoughts? I've been thinking about the vortec 4200, the 1jzgte, and a couple of nissan 4 and 6 cylinders. I'm still pretty open.

07-15-2018, 10:24 PM
I'm pretty confident when i say you don't see 4 door Ramblers built like this! lol If you're going to this level why not be really different and do a turbo 4.0 litre? Should be easy to find and build due to the big Jeep aftermarket. IMO it would get more attention at events than an LS which is in every other car....and is still AMC!

Man its funny you bring that up! My commitment to the LS idea has been shaky lately. I'm not sure I wanna do a jeep inline 6, but I've been considering all kinds of inline 6's and 4's lately.

I'm gonna have to go do some research on the jeep engine. I hadn't given it any serious consideration until now.

07-17-2018, 01:26 AM
You can build a pretty strong AMC 258 with the 4.0 head etc. there are a few guys that have built decent power with a turbo on these. TurboTom raced a Spirit with a turbo 6 to some very respectable times.

07-17-2018, 05:48 PM
You can build a pretty strong AMC 258 with the 4.0 head etc. there are a few guys that have built decent power with a turbo on these. TurboTom raced a Spirit with a turbo 6 to some very respectable times.

Iíd like to choose something I donít have to put a lot of work into to get some respectable power out of. What kind of work do you have to do to the 4.0 to get decent power? And what are we talking as far as power goes?

07-17-2018, 10:13 PM
I was looking for the build threads from a guy that ran an AMC Spirit with a Turbo setup he made himself, I think he was here also. He had the username TurboTom and it was a pretty quick combo. That being said, are you building a racecar, cruiser or daily? There are a lot of guys that are better than me as far as engine combos but it really isn't that hard to get some fun power in a unique powertrain.

07-18-2018, 07:19 AM
Primary use is as a daily driver. I have a really long commute, so reliability is the most important factor, followed by decent power.

07-18-2018, 01:59 PM
You should be able to get an honest 275-300hp out of a basic turbo build. The coolest part would be popping the hood at a show etc and NOT being an LS! lol

07-19-2018, 09:32 AM
You should be able to get an honest 275-300hp out of a basic turbo build. The coolest part would be popping the hood at a show etc and NOT being an LS! lol

Without a doubt! Iím pretty sold on no LS now

07-19-2018, 03:12 PM
Cool build!!

Your suspension/chassis work looks great.

I'm a strong AMC fan and really like the AMC 199/232/258/4.0L Engines as well.

A local guy has a 1961 Rambler Classic Wagon that runs LS Turbo power that runs really strong.

Today its hard to beat an LS for inexpensive power although the inline six would be unique.

I put a 1969 455 Olds in an AMC Spirit years ago, very easy swap.

Canadian Hotrods Magazine that built a 1963/64 Rambler Classic project car a while back.

There is a guy over at Speed Talk that built a stroker 287/327 AMC Engine, that's AMC loyalty!!

I remember Barney Navarro built an AMC 199 Turbo for Indy back in the 1960's.

It would me so much easier today!!

Did I mention I like AMC!!


07-20-2018, 11:48 AM
Man that’s bad to the bone!

09-02-2018, 10:59 PM
I got the front and rear suspension fully mocked up with springs to check ride height and measure for wheels. I put jacks under the uprights on the front and rear to put weight on the suspension. As you can see in the picture I piled heavy stuff in the engine bay to simulate engine weight. I think i got 5 or 600 lbs in there so its not full weight but it helped give an idea.

It's looking like ride height will be just right, or a little low. If I have to I can get a stronger front spring. Hopefully I don't have to.



I've been measuring and trying to figure out the most affordable/ good looking rim setup for the car. I've gotten tired of doing all the armchair quarterbacking, so I went to the pick and pull and grabbed a set off a 2001 blazer to check out, and to get a better idea of what I'm dealing with for space. They're 15x7 with a 50ish mm positive offset, according to google.


The 15" rim fits over the brakes no problem, but I can't find steel wheels or factory wheels with a deep enough positive offset to fit without any modifications.

These blazer rims are pretty similar size and offset to most factory rims I've found. I'm thinking no matter what I need to flare my fenders to fit any kind of wider rim or affordable rim. The deep positive offset rims I'd need to fit are too expensive for me.

What do you guys think of these rims? I think they're kind of cool, especially for $35 each. I could repaint the background color on the rims to complement the car's final color scheme.

I can get most of my money back for them so I'm not super attached. However I think they look pretty cool.


It looks like the front will just barely fit after the camber and caster are set. All the spacers on the upper control arms are removed here.


Here you can see the offset issue in the rear. I'd need another 1.5 to 2" probably to clear the blazer rims, or anything similar.


Please give me y'alls thoughts on the rims, the fender flares, and the wheel and tire situation in general!


09-09-2018, 11:37 PM
More progress today. I went out and got a set of tires for the Blazer rims I bought. They're 195/65/15's. I chose that size since I could get them cheap on craigslist. It was $150 for 5 tires, mounted and balanced... you can't beat that. I'll definitely go wider in the future, but this will get the car rolling, cheap!

Here's one mounted on the front. I think once the suspension is properly compressed it will look a little better. I may need to go larger diameter, aesthetically speaking. I'll wait to decide on that till I've driven it a bit to check out gear ratios. These tires will definitely work to get us going.


I also made progress in the rear of the car. The trailing links mount needs space for the bolt head on the inboard side. I sectioned out part of the frame behind the mount to make space.



I also finish welded the new trailing link mounts. With this done, I only have sway bar mounts, and differential solid mounts left and the mechanics of the rear end will be totally finished. I'm going to wait on those two things till after I've got an engine and transmission.

Getting tires got me all worked up over engines and transmissions. I've been doing lots of reading on line about my options, but I'm not ready to pull the trigger on either yet. To keep me busy, I'll probably work on flaring the fenders next. I'll probably also get bump stops installed too.

11-25-2018, 10:47 PM
I knocked out enough stuff on my to do list, so I had some time to work on the rambler. I removed the bolts attaching the rear springs to the uprights. Then I mounted a tire and lifted it in the wheel well to figure out where I needed clearance.


Then I laid out the cut I needed to make just above the fender lip.


After I made the lower cut I pulled the fender lip out to give good clearance around where the tire will interfere at full bump. I'm trying to make sure I'll have enough clearance with a wider tire. I made several of these paper templates to visualize the shape of the flare before I cut it.


I like the shape of it.


After I got the inner wheel well cut for clearance too, I was able to take the wheel almost all the way to full bump.


The sway bar mount is hitting the cross member I installed for the rear suspension. If I remove it I'll be able to make it to full bump with a corvette bump stop installed. I haven't decided yet if I'll modify the crossmember, or run without a sway bar.


Next I made a paper template off one of the body lines to transfer the upper cut I made on the right side to the left side.


After I cut the lower lip loose I measured and pulled the lip out to try to match the other side. Then I used my paper mock up flare to check all my cuts and pulling were matching up side to side.


I only found bad body filler in one place, so that's encouraging. I'm planning on tacking in my flare panels before I try to cut the rust out and replace it. That way the flare panel will hold the shape while I make the repair.


I've never done any body modification before, so I'm sort of winging it. If any of you guys sees something I'm doing that's going to send me to disaster please let me know! Hopefully what I've done so far wont bite me later on.

12-03-2018, 12:15 AM
This weekend I worked on sheet metal some more.

I got the fender flares cut out and welded in. I started by cutting metal versions of my paper templates, then fine tuning the shape to fit. I tried the tack tack method on one side.



I tried stitch welding the other side.



I didn't really have a preference one way or the other. They both welded up nicely.


I still have to do some rust repair on the passenger side, then the welding on the flares will be done.

Next I worked on filling in the material I removed from the trunk. I got it cut out using a paper template, then tacked in with lots of tacks. Then I welded it out. There's a small empty spot on the passenger side I still need to make a filler piece for.



I haven't done anything with the wheel well I had to cut for clearance. I cant decide if I need to connect them to the original lip of the wheel arch. Alternatively, I was wondering if I could just install a filler piece between the wheel well liner and the top of the new flare? I don't know if this would cause issues with the body down the road? Any advice would be appreciated.


12-06-2018, 11:34 PM
As I continue to try to decide on an engine, I keep coming back to the Jeep 4.0 and the Vortec 4200. I like the 4200 better in almost every way except it wasn’t offered as a manual. In order to do the manual conversion a custom flywheel is required, and factory parts from a Colorado can take you the rest of the way. So what I’ve been considering is swapping the 4200 with the automatic trans. Then driving it as an automatic for a while to decide if I want to do the manual conversion or not.

If this was y’alls project, what would you do? 4200 with auto then possibly manual later, 4200 with manual right off the bat, or jeep 4.0 with manual right off the bat?

12-09-2018, 02:47 PM
I got to work on the Rambler quite a bit this weekend. I made good progress on the wheel wells!

I needed to cut the inner fender well and the fender lip to clear the tire. I lifted the tire as high as I could to check clearance. The sidewall of the tire was rubbing close to full bump, so I cut the fender lip off to get better clearance.



Cutting the fender lip let me take the tire up to full bump. I marked the inner fender about 2" above the tire. This will leave plenty of clearance if I go to a bigger tire.

After I got everything cut the way I wanted I had to grind the undercoating off the metal so I'd be able to weld it. This SUCKED. I had to wash my hair and face 3 times this evening to get all the rubber out.

Next I cut paper templates to fit the spaces I needed to fill.


I transferred my templates to sheet metal and left a lip to make plug welding tabs. I thought I wanted to do plug welds on both sides of the filler piece, but after cutting them and starting to bend the tabs, I decided I'd rather do a regular weld where the inner fender met my filler piece. I just couldn't bend the second set of tabs the way I wanted to get a decent fit up.


This realization was kind of a bummer, after having punched SO MANY FRIGGIN PLUG WELD HOLES. But it turned out to be the right choice.


I cut off the second set of tabs, then finished fitting the filler pieces. I tacked them all in, and got the drivers side welded all the way out.

I also bent a piece of 1/4" round bar to match the curve of the fender lip. I welded it in to add back some rigidity that was lost by cutting out the fender lip. I think the round bar should be less likely to shred the side of a tire if it rubs too.


I got about half way through welding the passenger side, and ran out of welding gas. Cry

Since I couldn't keep welding, I ground down the welds on the outside of both sets of fender flares. I tried not to go too crazy so I didnt burn through a panel. I think a little bondo will finish it up just fine.


After this, I zip tied my sway bar up under the car to do some visualizing. I think I've got a plan now for how to integrate the sway bar with my crossmember.

I'm going to build a new mount to bolt to the upright. The mount will move the tabs the sway bar end attaches to. It will move the tabs out toward the wheel enough that the mount clears the crossmember.

Then, I'm going to heat up and bend both ends of the sway bar out enough to match the new width of the mounts on the uprights. I'm thinking if I do my heating and bending in the right places, it shouldn't compromise the sway bar. If it does... Oh well. I'll get one of those kits for making a custom width sway bar, or I wont run one after this one breaks.


It looks like the sway bar will fit perfectly in front of the gas tank. It should just take some simple brackets for the mounts to bolt into.


What do you guys think of the Sway bar plan? Anybody ever bent a sway bar?

01-02-2019, 12:44 AM
I just about finished up the sway bar and mounts today.

I started by building my new mounts where the sway bar end links attach to the upright.



Then I mounted them up to the uprights to figure out my plan for bending the sway bar.


My new tabs move the mounting position outward 1" and forward about an inch. This guided how I bent the sway bar.

First I traced the bar out on the ground and made some reference mark. I decided to bend the bar out right before it starts going across the car. Then I'd bend it back in 3" away from the first bend. This would move the entire arm of the sway bar out.


I heated and bent both sides at the first bend point. I ended up bending them out 4" at the tips.


Then I heated and bent both sides 3" further down the bar. This time I bent them back inward. I was aiming for a mark 1" outside of the original end position. Offsetting my bends moved the entire arm outward.


Then I test fitted the bar with the end links. I realized I couldn't reach full bump because the bar was hitting this link on the rear of the upright. I'm not sure what the technical term is, but the going name at my house today was "pain in the butt".


I pulled the bar back out to heat and straighten the bend in the bar where the bar was hitting the "pain in the butt".

This opened up gobs of space around the "pain in the butt. Here it is test fitted at about 2/3 of bump.


This gained me the clearance I needed on the sway bar end links. Now I've got some light trimming left to do on the crossmember, and I'll be able to get the suspension all the way through its travel.


While I waited on the sway bar to cool today I went to oreilly's and bought a set of universal bump stops.

Here they are mocked up where they're going to get mounted. I've got to cut out a simple bracket and weld it in for these to mount to. The stop will be a little further out, and about 3/4" higher. I think this position will just barely keep the suspension from bottoming out on the cross member when all the trimming is done.


01-03-2019, 10:42 PM
I got my sheet metal brake in a usable state today. I started the project by cutting all the angles to length. Then I cut out the angles for the hinges to get inset.


The center line of the hinge has to line up with the tips of the bender so the tips rotate around each other. I cut out WAY too much for the hinges. This made positioning the hinges and welding them in very difficult.

In case anyone was looking for a way to discourage themselves on a project, I highly recommend cutting out an angle way too big for a hinge. Positioning them SUCKED.

I made my upper cap out of a flipped piece of angle. I blew holes in it and welded in pieces of tube to give the bolt somewhere to seat.


I welded handles to the bender, and clamped it to my utility trailer. I don't have space to use it in my garage, so the trailer is a perfect spot to use it!


I made a test bend in about a 24" wide piece of 18 gauge. It bent it, but the upper cap/ die lifted up a fair bit. The widest bend I need to do for the gas tank is 39", so I'll probably weld braces into the cap to do that. I'll definitely have to beef up the top piece before I try to use it on anything close to full width (76").

It's definitely not perfect, but I'll make it work for me. I'm pretty sure in it's current state it could do the gas tank. It will just scream and complain the whole time.

01-03-2019, 10:53 PM
Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.....juz sayin but anti-sway bars are springs. What are you doing to re-temper it?

01-04-2019, 09:36 AM
Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.....juz sayin but anti-sway bars are springs. What are you doing to re-temper it?

I'm not going to do anything. There's a chance it wasn't heat treated. Some sway bars are, others are not. I'll keep an eye on it. If it breaks or deforms, I'll remove it and replace it with a custom sway bar. If it doesn't break, then we saved $160!

01-04-2019, 10:46 PM
I made another test bend without modifying the bender. Its not fantastic but I decided to go ahead and use it as is for the gas tank. I'm going to beef it up later on for other bigger projects.


I cut out the main piece for the tank, and laid out all the bends on the sheet.


Then I made the bends one by one, checking them with a speed square.


It bent up much better than I expected, and I didn't have to tweak anything to line up! I didn't expect it to go that well!

I welded the seam on the tank, and bead rolled the bottom of the tank to add a little rigidity. It probably didn't need it. I don't get to use it very much, so I didn't want to pass up the opportunity. When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.


The bead rolling put some stress in the bottom of the tank, so it curved inward.


I cut out the end plates for the tank, and pulled the bottom back into shape. It all came back into shape really well.


I marked out the places the inserts will go, and cut them out with the angle grinder.



Then I cut out the baffles, and welded them into the tank through the cutout holes. This part sucked, a lot. I'm not sure how I would do it different next time yet. I would probably tack the baffles in with the mig welder, and do the rest of the welding with tig.


Now I've got to cut out both of the insert pieces. Then I'm going to weld it out. Last thing will be to make the access hole and weld it in.

01-06-2019, 05:58 PM
I picked back up on the fuel tank today. The strip between the two cutouts was buckling from stress in the body. I cut a small strip out of it, and tacked it back together. Then I fitted the sump and pump recess.



Then I checked the fit up on everything and sat down to weld it out! It was really fun welding. I got the fit up tight enough on most of the outside corner joints to do a fusion weld. I just dipped filler when the keyhole opened up too much.

The only real problem I ran into was my vent hole was too small, and I blew out the last half inch of weld when I was sealing the tank up. You can see it in the middle of the pump cut out. I drilled the vent bigger, and welded it out.




Now I've got to make the pump access, and weld in the fittings. Then I'll have to paint it. I don't think I'm going to work on plumbing it until I've got my engine in the car.

01-16-2019, 08:58 PM
Not a car post, but a tool for the car! I ordered a new welder, and yesterday I picked it up. Unlike the one I already have, it has a foot pedal, and it has high frequency for welding aluminum!



This should be handy for making an intake and oil pan for the new engine! I havent had access to a tig welder for aluminum in a few years, so I'm pretty excited.

Crusty Nova
02-09-2019, 11:36 AM
use less heat on both your aluminum and steel. I have and might consider selling all the 5 sp swap stuff, Colorado transmission and custom flywheel.

02-10-2019, 09:36 AM
use less heat on both your aluminum and steel. I have and might consider selling all the 5 sp swap stuff, Colorado transmission and custom flywheel.

I'm definitely interested in the flywheel. I'll PM you.