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Discussion Starter #1


***Update in post #43 (6-18-19) - Getting the frame ready for sandblasting
Update in Post #40 (6-11-19) - Miscellaneous Progress
Update in Post # 36 (6-8-19) - Body is Off!
Update in Post #34 (1-8-19) - New parts arrived, and getting ready to pull the body.
Update in Post #33 (5-7-17) - Got the rear window to work so I could open the tailgate.
Update in Post #26 (4-9-17) - Took the front clip off today.
Update in Post #22 (4-2-17) - Started wrenching today!
Update in Post #13 (7-29-16) - Wash and wax - Getting ready to work on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Project Mayhem’s History

I got my Bronco from my parents when I was 17 (a very long time ago!). It was my parent’s car until my brother decided to run it with no water, and then put a bunch of cold water into it after it overheated. Not good for the Bronco, but good for me because my parents bought a new car after that and gave me the Bronco.

I put a new 400 into it that was basically stock except for an Edelbrock Performer cam and manifold and a Holly 650 carb. Over the next few years I put a 3” lift and 33’s on it, painted it and drove it daily along with lots of off roading. I never got into major rock crawling, but loved exploring on 4x4 trails and playing in the mud.

After blowing up several 9” rear ends, and having an axle snap while my wife was getting on the freeway (sending the passenger rear tire, with the axle flange and brake drum still bolted to it, down the on ramp about ¼ mile)I decided it was time to put a Dana 60 on it. I found a 60 and 44 8 lug that was on an F-250 at a junk yard so I grabbed them and put in new bearings and such. I kept the center section of my front 44 and swapped everything from the knuckles out with the 8 lug parts including the big dual piston calipers. Then I swapped in the 4.10’s (or 4.11’s – I don’t remember) gears into my original center section housing. I ended up getting a new 4” lift for free from Superlift along with all of the brackets, track bar, pitman arm, bushings, and shocks.

By this time I was very happy with how the truck was set up. The engine which I had rebuilt in high school 10 years before was getting a little tired and burning some oil, but still ran pretty good, the entire suspension was all new, the big brakes on the new axles worked great, and the paint and body were in decent shape. I was a very happy camper for about a year. Then on my way home from work one day I dropped a valve. It smacked the top of the piston and caused havoc with the engine.

So I bought a core engine, did all the normal stuff to the block, got a new Performer cam, had the heads redone, got flat top pistons and all the goodies. I pulled out the engine and started the process of building the new engine and somehow, as it does sometimes, life got in the way. My kid started getting into baseball and my time was spent between work, and coaching his various teams, then he got old enough to start dirt bike riding and fishing and all of a sudden it has been 12 years since I touched my poor Bronco. It is still sitting in my driveway with the new engine half assembled in the garage. Unfortunately the years have not been kind to the body.

Now my son is 16 and wanting to learn how to work on cars so I have a good excuse to spend a bit of money and some good quality bonding time with my Bronco ... errr ... I mean my son, while we get it running again.
 

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Current and Future Plans For Project Mayhem

The engine that I am building is a 400 bored 30 over with flat top pistons. As I recall the flat tops should bring the compression ratio up to roughly 9.3:1 (if anyone knows if this is correct, please chime in). Edelbrock Performer camshaft, intake manifold, and carburetor. The heads are basically stock but the local machine shop has redone them with new seals, retainers, and reground all the valves. For the moment I am putting it back together with the original exhaust manifolds but at some point in the future will redo the exhaust with some type of headers. The timing chain is a double roller that will be set straight up. I am about to order a new radiator with money that my wife gave me for Christmas (I have an awesome wife!). I believe the only parts I am missing are belts, hoses, plugs, and plug wires. I will be doing an inventory of the parts I have in the next few days.

I am planning to have the C6 transmission rebuilt with the wide ratio kit. My hope is to have this done in January. The transmission is the last big ticket item I need before I can reassemble everything. I may have to skip the wide ratio kit for budgetary reasons, but I hope to get it done. Any opinions on doing this? The 205 transfer case is stock and was working fine when I took it out, so I have no plans to do anything with it.

The running gear is pretty well set up with the Dana 60 rear and the HD Dana 44 up front. It is already geared with 4.10’s so I am pleased with the set up, although I plan to install a Detroit out back at some point in the distant future. Since the vehicle has been sitting for 12 years, I plan to re-pack the wheel bearings and probably install new seals and change the gear oil front and back. I would imagine the drums and rotors will have rust on them so I will need to turn them before driving it again.

Over the years the body has developed some body rot, but fortunately with the exception of the tailgate which is real bad, there are only a few localized bad spots. I don’t plan to do any bodywork until after I get it back on the road. I will post some picks of the bad spots in the next couple of days. At some point I will fix the body up and get a Maaco paint job in the same blue and white it is now.

The interior is in decent shape so not much needs to be done there although I plan to extend the roll bar forward and do a few odds and ends like a custom console and a few other things. It does need all new weather stripping, but I am not going to worry about any of this until after it is drivable again.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Pictures of Project Mayhem


The Early Years 1988 - 1994


















The painted years from around 1994 to 2001.
























How she sits right now after 12 years with no engine






 

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still looks great
i bet a good wash and polish will have it looking pretty decent again

it is amazing how life sneaks up behind you and gets in your way
i have a truimph gt6 convertable been a project since '99
 

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Discussion Starter #7
still looks great
i bet a good wash and polish will have it looking pretty decent again

it is amazing how life sneaks up behind you and gets in your way
i have a truimph gt6 convertable been a project since '99
In the middle picture of how it looks now you can see a shiny spot on the driver’s side of the hood. This is a small area that I put some cleaner wax on and it cleaned up ok. Hopefully the paint will clean up enough to look decent until I can paint it at some point.


Looks like it will be a fun project with you and your son. I really like the color combination.
I am really looking forward to working on it again and spending some time with my son.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I haven't been able to get much done to the Bronco because of a job I started last year that has kept me away from home a lot. I hope to be working local again in the next few weeks and then I can get going again on the Bronco!

I did get my new radiator and I am just waiting to put some funds aside for the trans rebuild. That is the last large purchase I have before I start putting everything back together.

For now, I thought I would post a few more pics of what it looks like right now.

















 

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Top of page.
Project Mayhem’s History

I got my Bronco from my parents when I was 17 (a very long time ago!). It was my parent’s car until my brother decided to run it with no water, and then put a bunch of cold water into it after it overheated. Not good for the Bronco, but good for me because my parents bought a new car after that and gave me the Bronco.

I put a new 400 into it that was basically stock except for an Edelbrock Performer cam and manifold and a Holly 650 carb. Over the next few years I put a 3” lift and 33’s on it, painted it and drove it daily along with lots of off roading. I never got into major rock crawling, but loved exploring on 4x4 trails and playing in the mud.

After blowing up several 9” rear ends, and having an axle snap while my wife was getting on the freeway (sending the passenger rear tire, with the axle flange and brake drum still bolted to it, down the on ramp about ¼ mile)I decided it was time to put a Dana 60 on it. I found a 60 and 44 8 lug that was on an F-250 at a junk yard so I grabbed them and put in new bearings and such. I kept the center section of my front 44 and swapped everything from the knuckles out with the 8 lug parts including the big dual piston calipers. Then I swapped in the 4.10’s (or 4.11’s – I don’t remember) gears into my original center section housing. I ended up getting a new 4” lift for free from Superlift along with all of the brackets, track bar, pitman arm, bushings, and shocks.

By this time I was very happy with how the truck was set up. The engine which I had rebuilt in high school 10 years before was getting a little tired and burning some oil, but still ran pretty good, the entire suspension was all new, the big brakes on the new axles worked great, and the paint and body were in decent shape. I was a very happy camper for about a year. Then on my way home from work one day I dropped a valve. It smacked the top of the piston and caused havoc with the engine.

So I bought a core engine, did all the normal stuff to the block, got a new Performer cam, had the heads redone, got flat top pistons and all the goodies. I pulled out the engine and started the process of building the new engine and somehow, as it does sometimes, life got in the way. My kid started getting into baseball and my time was spent between work, and coaching his various teams, then he got old enough to start dirt bike riding and fishing and all of a sudden it has been 12 years since I touched my poor Bronco. It is still sitting in my driveway with the new engine half assembled in the garage. Unfortunately the years have not been kind to the body.

Now my son is 16 and wanting to learn how to work on cars so I have a good excuse to spend a bit of money and some good quality bonding time with my Bronco ... errr ... I mean my son, while we get it running again.
 

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Top of page
Current and Future Plans For Project Mayhem

The engine that I am building is a 400 bored 30 over with flat top pistons. As I recall the flat tops should bring the compression ratio up to roughly 9.3:1 (if anyone knows if this is correct, please chime in). Edelbrock Performer camshaft, intake manifold, and carburetor. The heads are basically stock but the local machine shop has redone them with new seals, retainers, and reground all the valves. For the moment I am putting it back together with the original exhaust manifolds but at some point in the future will redo the exhaust with some type of headers. The timing chain is a double roller that will be set straight up. I am about to order a new radiator with money that my wife gave me for Christmas (I have an awesome wife!). I believe the only parts I am missing are belts, hoses, plugs, and plug wires. I will be doing an inventory of the parts I have in the next few days.

I am planning to have the C6 transmission rebuilt with the wide ration kit. My hope is to have this done in January. The transmission is the last big ticket item I need before I can reassemble everything. I may have to skip the wide ratio kit for budgetary reasons, but I hope to get it done. Any opinions on doing this? The 205 transfer case is stock and was working fine when I took it out, so I have no plans to do anything with it.

The running gear is pretty well set up with the Dana 60 rear and the HD Dana 44 up front. It is already geared with 4.10’s so I am pleased with the set up, although I plan to install a Detroit out back at some point in the distant future. Since the vehicle has been sitting for 12 years, I plan to re-pack the wheel bearings and probably install new seals and change the gear oil front and back. I would imagine the drums and rotors will have rust on them so I will need to turn them before driving it again.

Over the years the body has developed some body rot, but fortunately with the exception of the tailgate which is real bad, there are only a few localized bad spots. I don’t plan to do any bodywork until after I get it back on the road. I will post some picks of the bad spots in the next couple of days. At some point I will fix the body up and get a Maaco paint job in the same blue and white it is now.

The interior is in decent shape so not much needs to be done there although I plan to extend the roll bar forward and do a few odds and ends like a custom console and a few other things. It does need all new weather stripping, but I am not going to worry about any of this until after it is drivable again.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Been a while since I have posted anything in this thread, so I thought I would do an update.

I have been accumulating parts and re stocking my tool box for some time now, and I am finely ready to get started. This weekend will be the first time I have put wrench to Bronco in nearly 16 years!

Since it had been sitting for so long in the weather, many things have corroded, so I have decided to do much more than just put the new engine in.

Here is a list of what I am going to do;

Engine Rebuild (See post number 3 for more details)
All New Engine Related Components (cooling system, electrical, ignition, carburetor, etc)
Transmission (with wide ratio kit)
Completely Replace Brake System (everything – master, booster, all brake lines, proportioning valve, etc)
New Axle Seals and Repack Wheel Bearings
Replace Gas Tank and Fuel Lines
All New suspension Bushings
New Body Mounts
Paint Undercarriage (black – white shocks – red coils, boots, bushings, body mounts, etc)
Paint Front Bumper
Inner Fenders
Change Differential Fluid

The transfer case is in good shape and the drive shafts were new when I stopped driving it and have been in my garage since I pulled the engine, so I do not think I need to replace those.

I have enough of the needed parts to get a good start, so I am going to start striping stuff down this week end. I got tired of it looking abandoned, so I washed it up and did a quick wax job. It cleaned up ok except for the body rot. Not enough wax in the world to polish that up.

Here are some pictures from after waxing.








 

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One thing about living in California, no rust, plus it was speed center where you could get all the parts and extras when needed, haven't seen a front tube bumper on a bronco it a long time, when i had my first 79 i knew people at hedman, and smittybilt, i use to offer my truck as a test truck and then get to keep all the new goodies but those days are long gone.
I'm sure things have changed a lot since i moved to the east coast, torrance use to have a lot of nice speed shops as well as culver city.
By the way great looking truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
One thing about living in California, no rust, plus it was speed center where you could get all the parts and extras when needed, haven't seen a front tube bumper on a bronco it a long time, when i had my first 79 i knew people at hedman, and smittybilt, i use to offer my truck as a test truck and then get to keep all the new goodies but those days are long gone.
I'm sure things have changed a lot since i moved to the east coast, torrance use to have a lot of nice speed shops as well as culver city.
By the way great looking truck.
Unfortunately, most of the local speed shops are gone. Did you live in Torrance?
 

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no i lived in west la and culver city. Sandees use to be the best place for exhaust in culver city, they had a tubing bender with a mandel so all the pipes were solid. Speed center use to be on sepulveda down the street from bob's big boy, not sure if that's still there, isky use to have a small shop there also.
mgm back lot was on jefferson and sepulveda, it's now a condo site.
i liked to eat at vinces on torrance blvd, best food.
again nice truck and will continue to watch for upgrades.
 
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