Dash installed, other stuff DONE

reI pulled the batteries out, then the battery trays (one wasn’t even bolted in – just laying on the battery box bottom) and the battery box bottom. The trays are pretty much toast, but replacing those will have to wait – more important stuff needs to be done first! I had to soak and heat the screws holding the bottom on – they were holding fast, but finally gave way!

Once out, I wire brushed the heavy rust and sprayed with Rustoleum Rust Converter to stop the rust. When that was dry, I sprayed a couple of heavy coats of Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer. When that was dry, I sprayed a couple of coats of Rubberized undercoating on everything. Hopefully, this will keep the rust at bay until I get around to replacing the pans and bottom. The box is in good condition.


When everything was dry (ish), I re assembled it.


Next, I started sanding on the floor and shifters. My fingers are RAW! The USMC “security system” on the shifter had to be removed so I can replace the boot, so I ended up cutting that off with a cutoff wheel. I sprayed everything with Rustoleum primer and let it dry before putting 2 coats of paint on it.


While I was painting, I decided to go ahead and paint my blackout drive light, bracket and data plate. I STILL had paint left, so I scuffed the rear wheels and cleaned them with thinner – used a piece of cardboard as a paint mask and sprayed 2 coats on them.

I got my daughter to help me out installing the dash in the Jeep so I wouldn’t scratch it. That went perfectly. Then I installed the cables, steering shaft support, window latches and ignition switch.


Lastly, I installed the batteries and lid.

Long day, but feel like I got something accomplished!




Dash – DONE!

It was still a little cool after church but I got out to the shop anyway. I set my saw horses up and laid out the parts to paint. It took me about 30 minutes to scuff everything down. I poured out 6oz of paint and added about 3oz of warm water – seemed to be thin enough to spray. The last time I sprayed this latex paint in didn’t want to spray – I guessed that it wasn’t thinned out enough, so this time it was going to be thinner. It took me about 30 minutes to get a thin coat on every surface of every part and screws/bolts. By the time I was done with the first coat, the parts were dry enough to handle already! I was actually able to pick them up to inspect for full coverage. I am loving this paint more and more every time I use it! I went ahead and sprayed a heavy coat on top of the first. Second coat took half the time. After a little longer drying period for the heavy coat (prob 30 min), I was able to handle them to inspect for coverage. They all looked good, so I let them sit for another 30 or so minutes and moved them over to the tailgate of the truck.

Reay for assembly


My “new” pintle hitch, chain plate and USMC stamped gas can carrier – DONE!


Next up was re assembling everything. It all went back together without many problems. The Dzus clips were a little tight, so when I was trying to screw one of the panel screws down the screwdriver slipped and scratched the instrument cluster – had to touch that up. I found a couple of edges that didn’t get a second coat, so I had to touch those up too.


Lookin good – just need a new light switch and data plate.


It’s not perfect, but a LOT better than before! I HATE that blue paint that seems to be EVERYWHERE! I plan on painting the data plate tomorrow to give the dash the finishing touch. I also need to do some stripping and sealing/painting on the battery box while the dash is out. If there are enough hours in the day, I can start stripping the rest of the interior – hoping to get it painted this week.

Parts needed to complete the dash and interior:

  1. Spider wiring harness for the instrument cluster
  2. Light switch
  3. Weather stripping for glove and tool box doors
  4. New fuel sending unit wire and loom
  5. Seat cushions

Got some REAL paint on it!

I ran to Home Depot and had some paint mixed up for it today. The word on the Steel Soldiers forum is that Behr Marquee exterior latex (yes, I said LATEX) is a great paint for military vehicles! It takes a little longer to completely harden, but includes primer and sets up HARDER the enamel. Another plus is that you can pick it up the same day instead of having to wait a week and pay shipping and Hazmat fees! It is a little pricey, but still cheaper than ordering. I got him to mix up a gallon of FS#24052.

While I was out, I stopped by Big Lots and picked up some generic Oxyclean and Scotchbrite pads, and Advance Auto to get the 5/16″x 72″ fuel line.

Once home, I removed the sending unit and pickup from the gas tank. Then I mixed up the Oxyclean (1 scoop/gal) and poured it into the tank until it was full to the top (it held 17gal). I also put the sending unit and pickup in an old cooler and covered it with the same mixture. Within 15 minutes, you could see the mixture moving and bubbling in the tank and cooler.

You can see what ethanol gas does when it sits up for a long time (the sending unit and pickup) – turns to a bubble gum consistency!

Here’s a video of the Oxyclean mixture working. We’ll see how that turns out tomorrow. There was gum in the bottom of the tank also.

Oxyclean tank cleaning method

While that was working, I went ahead and started chipping and sanding on the driver side floor area of the Jeep. I wanted to get that painted before I put the tank back in. I sprayed about 3 good coats on it. The latex turned out pretty good in my opinion. I had a little trouble getting the gun adjusted to spray the thick paint. I ended up thinning the paint with 10% water and turning the air pressure up to get it to lay down enough paint to get the semi gloss look. I also went ahead and painted the driver seat and tank strap. I’ll paint the tank tomorrow.

After about 3 or 4 hrs, I pulled the sending unit out and cleaned it with a scotchbrite pad and scraped the paint off of the cap. I also checked the ohms to make sure it worked and replaced the rubber connector. The float wouldn’t even move before the bath! Then I pulled the pickup out – it cleaned up fairly easy with the scotchbite and scraper. THEN I pulled the filter! Man, that tube was SOLID gum and so was the inside of the filter! That stuff is a PITA to clean – I ended up rodding the tube out and soaking everything in carb cleaner. After about an hour working on that, it was clean and ready to install when the tank is clean.

So that’s it for today. Tomorrow the plan is to dump the tank and get it painted. Hopefully the gum in the bottom will be dissolved or at least soft enough to scrape out easily. If not, I guess I’ll have to take it to a radiator repair shop to dip. Once it is cleaned I can install the sending unit and pickup and paint it. Then I can install the tank and new fuel line.