Project Jeep CJ-7

A number of years ago, I got the Jeep bug.  I even know when and where I was when the bug hit me.  I preparing to build something for the offroad, maybe a Toyota FJ-40 or an early Toyota pickup with a solid front axle, maybe a Jeep or a Scout.  I wasn’t sure.  Then one trip with a friend and a large group of Jeeps did it for me.  I was hooked on Jeep.  CJ-7 in fact.  Something about the CJ-7 was calling to me.

So I started looking for an early CJ-7.  Then I met a guy named Bob Norris.   To the dismay of his neighbors, Bob’s backyard was a Jeep Junkyard.   His backyard was full of Jeeps and Scouts, Jeep parts, frames, body parts and various other automotive related items.  Best of all Bob was motivated to sell a good deal of it for a decent price.  It was perfect timing for me.  So I set out to make up my shopping list and weekend after weekend, I drove away from his house with a trailer and truck full of parts for my Jeep project.


As I worked day after day, week after week on this Jeep, I took thousands of photos and wrote about it.  What ended up being several years of work and design was documented here.  I wanted a Jeep that was as close to stock as possible for a ’78 CJ-7 except with a good number of upgrades to replace what would be weak stock parts.  That included must of the drive train, which now consists of an AMC 360 with a Truck Avenger Carb, T-18A manual Transmission, Dana 20 with Teralow gears and locked Dana 44 axles from and rear.

 If you’ve got the same ambitions as I had with building a Jeep, the articles of this project may be helpful or at least entertaining.  Having invested the time and money into this Jeep, I can look back and say that building it was just as much fun as wheeling it.

My only regret is that I built it TOO Nice!  It pained me to get it covered in mud or bounce it off the rocks or drag it across tree branches and underbrush on the trail.  I set off to build a beater and instead I built a show Jeep.  Oh well.  Anyone have a beat up flat fender for sale?  🙂  Thanks for stopping by!

Project CJ-7
How it all started…

About Project CJ-7


Specifications and Modifications

CJ-7 Mods & Specs


Jeep Project
Index of Writeups

Project CJ-7 Writeups

Project CJ-7 Articles

Project Jeep CJ-7

Project Jeep CJ-7 Specs & Mods

The budget Rebuild by Ralph HasselThe complete build is documentedhere on www.Offroaders.comThis 1978 Jeep CJ-7 never started life as a complete Jeep; rather it was built completely from parts. The goal was to build a […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Skid Plate Protection For the Oil Pan!

This relatively simply oil pan modification, though it’s being done on Project CJ-7, can be installed on almost ANY 4×4 with an exposed oil pan.  Though it may be a rare event to poke a […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Fabricating an Armored Jeep Skid Plate

This Project CJ-7 article is about converting and armoring a Dana 300 skid plate to work with a Dana 20 transfer case.  An ounce of prevention is worth a few pounds of steel.  After hearing stories […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

T18A Clutch Fork Modifications

In swapping the T-18A onto this Jeep project, a good tip was passed onto me from Mike of  This tip has to do with the stock clutch fork being used in the stock bell […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Project CJ-7 gets Armored Custom U-Bolt Plates

Fabricating Custom U-Bolt Plates with Skid Protection for Project Jeep CJ-7   With the job of a Dana 44 axle swap to the project CJ-7 came the need for new u-bolt plates.  Two things made stock u-bolt […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

CJ Flipping the Tie Rod & Drag Link

A Simple yet very effective method of protecting your tie rod from impact with rocks and things, is to raise the tie rod up.  Raising the Drag link also reduces bump-steer, a side effect of […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Project Jeep CJ-7 Radiator Protection

Using 6 bucks worth of material to protect a 300 dollar 3-core radiator and to cool the V8 Engine. When looking at the grill of my 78 CJ-7, the one thing that just stuck out like […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Project CJ-7 gets a T-18A Borg-Warner Transmission

After doing some research I finally decided to look for a Borg-Warner T-18A manual transmission.  Manual because that is what I prefer.   The T-18A because of it’s 6.32:1 first gear and it’s heavy duty, cast […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Jeep CJ-7 Swaybar Bracket Upgrade

Project Jeep CJ-7 Daystar Swaybar Bushings Tip.  When swapping out your stock CJ swaybar bushings with the Daystar Swaybar Bushings, here’s a Tip – Use the CJ bracket!  Here’s why…First off, upgrading your sway bar bushings […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Jeep CJ Dana 44 Front Axle Swap

Project Jeep CJ-7 – Disassembling the Scout II  Dana 44 Front Axle.  After acquiring the Dana 44 axles I also picked up a Dana 30 narrow track front axle that was in great shape.  The […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Dana 44 Rear Axle Swapped onto a CJ-7 Frame

Continuing on from the front axle prep, the rear axle’s spring pad angle recorded and spring pads were removed.  That was followed up by an inspection of differential and rear drum brakes to make sure […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Front Spring Hangers

Project Jeep CJ-7   Scout II Dana 44 Axles Swap onto a CJ-7 FrameNew Custom Fabricated HangersFront Springs – Front HangersThe front hangers were a little easier to design than the rear hangers.  Mainly because they […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Painting the Hangers

Project Jeep CJ-7   Scout II Dana 44 Axles Swap onto a CJ-7 FrameFabricated Leaf Spring HangersInstalling the Front Leaf Springs HangersBelow is the whole set of hangers.  Gussets have been welded in and all the holes […]

Project Jeep CJ-7

Custom U-Bolt Plates with Skid Protection

Project Jeep CJ-7   U-Bolt Skid PlatesFabricating Custom U-Bolt Plates with Skid ProtectionWith the job of a Dana 44 axle swap to the project CJ-7, came the need for new u-bolt plates.  Two things made stock […]