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1973 Commando

Discussion in 'Builds and Fabricators Forum' started by garage gnome, Mar 3, 2022.

  1. Mar 3, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    This will be the official build thread for the Commando I just picked up. Body has some rot, but its not terrible for New England plow jeep.

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    It has a mighty 258 straight six, T14 and D20. The engine runs like a top and the transmission shifts nicely. I think the clutch is smoked. It grabs way at the top and it seems like it is slipping all the time. I'll try adjusting it.

    [​IMG]

    The driver's seat is the only the only damaged seat in the interior. The fold and tumble still works on the passenger seat. Rear seat is nice as well. All the stock seatbelts are still in place. The dash is a little messed up from the stupid plow controls. Plows should be banned! :steamed:

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    The headliner is absolutely perfect!

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    The most interesting thing I found was a surveyor's book with date from 1971 to 2009. The dates from 71 to 73 are about a red jeep that was traded in to buy this jeep. So in 2009, the commando was sold to the people I bought it from, who only used it as a plow rig. The log shows the odometer reading and how many gallons it too to fill up the tank. It also shows any repair or what was done to the jeep. Such a cool find!

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    And of course, I had to continue the log!

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Mar 3, 2022
    Danefraz

    Danefraz Well-Known Member 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Chico CA
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    Excellent! Following.
     
  3. Mar 3, 2022
    Andrew Theros

    Andrew Theros Member 2022 Sponsor

    Los Osos, CA
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    Agreed!
    What a score!
     
  4. Mar 4, 2022
    James Robbins

    James Robbins jrobb

    Atlanta
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    Wow. That is really something.
     
  5. Mar 4, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    I will not be doing anything too exciting to this until I wrap up my TDI swap in Ted and finish Snowshoe.

    I also forgot to mention, there are warn lockomatics on it and a perfectly preserved sticker inside the glovebox!
     
    Glenn and Fireball like this.
  6. Mar 4, 2022
    RATTYFLATTY

    RATTYFLATTY I think you need a little more throttle

    Central MN
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    Oct 23, 2007
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    Yes there will be rot, but it does look like you have some nice pieces to work with.
     
  7. Mar 4, 2022
    jackdog

    jackdog Member 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Finger Lakes NY
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    Very stock looking. To find one with the headliner intact and stock radio is rare. Nice find.
     
  8. Mar 4, 2022
    colojeepguy

    colojeepguy Colorado Springs

    At the foot of...
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    I don't think I've ever seen a headliner in a Commando! And I love the console, any idea where that came from?
     
  9. Mar 4, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    I think it’s factory. I’ll have to check my log book! :study:
     
    jeepstar likes this.
  10. Mar 4, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    I’m torn what to do with the Commando. I was thinking of building it, but it’s pretty unmolested, so I’m not sure what to do now. I could fix it up a little and sell it or just do a full blown restoration.
     
  11. Mar 4, 2022
    FinoCJ

    FinoCJ 1970 CJ5 Staff Member 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Bozeman, MT
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    JMO...YMMV....but I don't see any value in a restoration of a bull nose, or see any concern building/modifying it even in it's mostly original condition. Maybe that's just my aesthetic dislike. Fix it up and sell, or build it up. I think they can actually look pretty good built with lift etc. Given your skills, you might even be able to make a little profit selling a built one, but probably not much on a per hour/effort base. After all these years wheeling the 81" wheelbase of an ecj5, slightly longer wheelbase rigs are interesting to me. SOA on 35s and some fender work be just about right.
     
  12. Mar 4, 2022
    Fireball

    Fireball Well-Known Member 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Pullman, WA
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    I'm the opposite. Nobody restores them so it would be cool to have a fully restored one. This one complete enough to be a great start.
     
    dozerjim and Glenn like this.
  13. Mar 4, 2022
    timgr

    timgr We stand on the shoulders of giants. 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Medford Mass USA
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    Darn nice for a northeast Jeep. Do I see a power steering pump? A '73 with a six has the pump on the passenger side, and very long power steering hoses. Hard to fault the AMC sixes, especially the ones from before 1981. Very smooth, durable and economical. The 258/T-14 combo is easy to drive, requiring very little shifting.

    Looks like it was bought for light-duty plowing, with few extras. I wonder how well the heater works in these, and if the cabin would be more comfortable in cold weather than a CJ with a hard top. Maybe.
     
  14. Mar 4, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    Yes it has power steering, but the line is blown. The heat works very well in it. On high, it will make you strip down a layer. Snowshoes heat burns me out, but that has an aftermarket heater. This one is stock.
     
  15. Mar 4, 2022
    Glenn

    Glenn Kinda grumpy old man Staff Member

    Apopka, Fl
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    I wholeheartedly agree with restoring it. It is too nice to not restore. I think that color combo looks good on it.
     
    dozerjim likes this.
  16. Mar 4, 2022
    colojeepguy

    colojeepguy Colorado Springs

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    If it were mine, it'd get a mild lift, some 30" all terrain tires, and a 4 speed. Change the tcase to a 2.46 low gear and some type of ls diff. Use it for mild trails and back road exploring.
     
  17. Mar 4, 2022
    garage gnome

    garage gnome ECJ5 welder 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Western MA
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    My first thought about it was an sm420, Dana 300 and a 4” lift.
     
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  18. Mar 4, 2022
    timgr

    timgr We stand on the shoulders of giants. 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Medford Mass USA
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    Huh. When I first saw a picture, I thought "Daisy Yellow - that's a '73." On second thought, I deemed the '72 color Canary Yellow too similar ... should have gone with my first impression. Yellow with a white top looks good.

    I would putt around for a while before deciding to change it much. You could daily-drive this one easily. Maybe not today, but someday the novelty of it might make it valuable as it is.
     
    Glenn likes this.
  19. Mar 4, 2022
    Glenn

    Glenn Kinda grumpy old man Staff Member

    Apopka, Fl
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    To me the combo lets the grill somewhat blend in, to be absorbed and not stick out like a sore thumb.
     
  20. Mar 4, 2022
    Desert Runner

    Desert Runner Member 2022 Sponsor 2021 Sponsor 2020 Sponsor

    Hickory, Pa
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    :watch: Can't wait
     
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