"Go and get UTED!"

Well first up I’d just like to say thanks to all those that voted for my truck. I feel pretty honored to have been chosen for the first rig of the month, and think roe and the boys are doing a hell of a job with the forum.
I bought the cruiser off a local electrician in 2001, I’d been looking around for a cheap shorty for a couple of months, and one day while at the pub and discussing fourbys a bloke says to me “wanna buy a cheap troopie ” after a look a bit of haggling and $1500 I went home with my first fourby, a very tired and rusty 82 troopie complete with broken springs (three broken leaves in back right) and hardly any interior, but it was registered at least. I drove it as was for a while using it mainly for camping and fishing until the engine died and the bug bit…...

here's the story.
 


As it was when purchased

ENGINE
I was coming home from a camping trip with the kids and the old faithful 2F dropped a valve in number six and died in a big way. Broke the piston bent the conrod and put a hole in the bore. Being a rev head by nature I saw this as an opportunity to make a few improvements. After ringing around a few wreckers I located a very sad looking 308 with no dissy for $600, first thing I did when I got it home was to pull it down so as I could give it a rebuild (BONUS) someone had already beaten me to it. The engine had new 20thou over flat top pistons; they looked like they’d just come of the shelf. It also had a new TQ30 cam double row timing chain and reco heads so all I did was give it a hone and stick in new rings and bearings and put it back together using new gaskets. I then made new engine mounts and used a Marks adaptor kit to fit it. Hardest part of the whole job was all the fiddly bits like wiring, power steering and doing the exhaust. The original single 1.5 inch single exhaust has since been replaced with a 2.5-inch twin system, which is heaps better. More power and sounds much better and also replaced the alternator with an 85 amp one . It’s been there three or four years now and doesn’t use a drop off oil or blow any smoke and can smoke the tires at the drop of a hat. So I’m happy with it

SUSPENSION AND DRIVELINE
While I was finishing off the million and one small jobs on the engine I decided I’d better do something about the broken sagging suspension. New suspension is pretty tame. 2inch lift springs, new bushes and shocks from TJM and extended shackles. I also had to replace the front drum brakes with discs, which came off an 84 model 45. Rest of driveline is standard 45series

 

BODY
After all the mechanical work, I gave it a quick coat of white paint. Eventually the roof and body got so bad I was forced to do something about it. After no success finding another roof I decided to turn it into a Ute. I’d noticed the bloke up the road had an old roof and tub sitting in his yard and when I asked him about it he said ‘you cart it away and its yours’. The roof was very rusty but the price was good. After cutting out all of the rust and fixing the dents in it, I made a bulkhead panel out of box tube and panel steel and capped the quarter panels using 25mm box tube and light angle. The tailgate is built from scratch from 3mm chequer plate and box tube. I also had to replace the drives side floor, replace a door , fix rust in the tub, windscreen and dash. The outer edges of the front guards were rusty so I cut them of and built replacements using chequer plate and 40 mm pipe. The bottom edges of the side panels were rusty so I trimmed 30mm of them and rebuilt the lip. I then made sliders incorporating the original side steps. The quarter panels are 3mm chequer plate and are welded not screwed on. The body lift was done using blocks and box tube, and was pretty straightforward to do. The paint is a ford Europe colour called grey effect.
 

OTHER STUFF
I’ve fitted a roll cage because the roof is removable. I also made the front and rear bars. The rear bar has a spare wheel carrier, but it’s not fitted at the moment.
The interior has seats and consol from a Subaru liberty RS, I used the inserts from the Subaru’s rear seat as inserts in the cruiser door trims and fitted some grey carpet.
All the steel I used, except for the roll cage steel, came of the scrape heap at the local tip or recyclers and I got a heap of parts off an old bloke on a farm for a carton of boags. He had 5 cruisers sitting in a paddock including an ex army soft-top troopie, and he let me take what ever I wanted. I did some painting for a bloke in return for a set of 35”pro comp mudders.
I’ve recently purchased a repco 9500lb winch but haven’t fitted it as yet, and am hoping to get a locker and some longer shocks in the near future

 

©2006 DownUnder4x4

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