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Moses Ludel

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About Moses Ludel

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    Reno Area...Nevada
  • Interests
    Family, destination four-wheeling and dual-sport motorcycling, photography, videography, fly-fishing, anthropology, automotive mechanics and welding/metallurgy.

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  1. Moses Ludel

    4.2L Re-build 77 CJ-7 Project

    Nice work, Stuart...Did you polish the crankshaft? Looks good...No regrind and balance? Inline sixes are very tolerant of balance, OEM cranks and flywheels generally do not create an issue. I usually grind 0.010"/0.010" undersize and balance the reciprocating parts. Match weighting helps, too. Not sure if any of this is in your plan... I'll look through my OEM Mopar parts for the 4.2L projects. I may have a valve retainer. The original part number is J3173225. The number may have been updated later by Mopar. Moses
  2. Moses Ludel

    Corvair Aircraft Engine Conversion

    Hi, Stuart...Glad you got the Finch book, he did a real service here, making welding accessible to many. The read is easy, the facts are confidence inspiring. A great book! You'll have more flame stability with the 2-stage system. When bottle gas drops down, you won't be fiddling as much with the flame... Best regards, Moses
  3. Speed...Sounds logical on the master cylinder bypassing and leaking into the booster. No visible leaks? Where else could it go? At the magazine, I did a lengthy series on forming and flaring brake tubing. If you plan to build from scratch, you'll find that insight useful: http://www.4wdmechanix.com/video-series-how-to-flare-automotive-brake-tube-fuel-lines-and-cooler-tubing/ Moses
  4. In this era of audio-visual learning, I have been building an instructional library at Vimeo On Demand, the best use of my time and a worthwhile means for serving the needs of 4x4 light truck owners. This exchange with a thoughtful forum Member characterizes a choice that many consumers make today: 6-11-2018 Forum Member Question: Should I? '"I would like to first off apologize for burdening you with this question, but I have read a lot of your stuff and feel you would be the man to talk to about this particular topic. I understand you are a firm promoter of the restoration of vehicles and know which vehicles are worth restoring. I have a 1979 GMC K 2500 that has 185,000 km's on it. I am the second owner of the truck, after my great uncle passed away and left it to me. The original engine is in decent shape and it runs well, but it could use a tune up. The body is in rough shape with rust around the wells and a nice dent in the door. I used it for a few years until I saved up enough money to buy something newer, and it has since set in my back yard waiting for the time when I can restore it with my son. Isn't that always the story? All that aside, I will get to my predicament. My wife is in full clean up mode after our recent decision to move and my truck was the first on the chopping block. Reluctantly , I came to grips with letting go of this truck as I am just starting my career and don’t have the time or money at the moment, so she posted it online for $1,750. Within an hour she had 50 people calling wanting to buy it, one of which was willing to drive over 1,000 km's to pick it up! This made us think that the truck may be worth holding onto, instead of letting go because it is inconvenient to keep at the moment. After spending a few days researching costs and the like, I have a good idea of how much it will cost to restore and the amount of time required to do so. I am willing and able to do the work, but I wanted to see if it was actually a truck worth restoring or if I should capitalize on the interest now and then pick another up later when I have the time. Of course, this is taking all the sentimental value out of the machine, but you get what I mean. I am sure you know better than most, it is a hard decision to financially commit to a project like this. Especially, if you are like me and have to do everything right and easily develop an obsession about ensuring that the project is seen through right to the end...Dune Wolf" Moses Ludel's Reply: Dune...First off, this truck is in the cohort of the best G.M. light trucks ever built. 1971-79 K2500 trucks have superior equipment and engineering to any model ever assembled. They drive well and live up to all expectations. They are readily serviceable and rugged, with the best axles, transfer case, power steering and chassis in the industry—then or today. If the truck has a manual transmission and NP205 gear drive transfer case, it would be my top pick for a 3/4-ton 4x4 pickup. The Turbo 350 is livable but not as stout as a THM400, a choice G.M. made for all light 4x4s except the somewhat rarer K3500 SRW and dually trucks. A THM350 is a relatively simple transmission to rebuild. That said, the truck is not "new" and does need the work you describe. As for mileage, we bought an immaculate 1987 K2500 4x4 Suburban at 160,000 miles that had a documented G.M. crate motor installed at 160K. We sold the vehicle to a friend at 180,000 miles, and the Suburban is still running well at over 300,000 miles with the use of Mobil 1 engine oil. Without romanticizing, these trucks are simply better built than all others. Period. Another anecdote: We had a 1987 Jeep Grand Wagoneer that wife Donna loved to drive, I kept it to my high standards of preventive care and service, it was a wonderful vehicle. We got a "hair" to trade the Jeep on a new Liberty in 2002. The dealership nearly begged us to not force a trade-in and reluctantly gave us a $1500 allowance. (We paid $6500 for the FSJ gem three years prior.) That vehicle/model has since become a cult classic. Ours would sell today for $15,000. A big lesson... The choice is yours. If you either do your own work or can have access to a reliable shop for restorative work, compare your great uncle's 2-owner vehicle with today's complex G.M. or other trucks that are extremely expensive to service and nearly impossible to fix. Try a Duramax with a cab and front clip removal to replace the turbocharger. Or maybe a new Ford F150 with the 3.5L twin-turbo V-6 certain to fail under load. The Ford 6.0L and 6.4L diesels have cost owners tens of thousands in major repairs. As a footnote, there is not a single electronic module in that '79 G.M. truck. The ignition module and radio are the only "electronic" devices. My 50-plus years of professional skill at wrenching have been a major coup. I have a wedge against inflation and no compulsion to invest in new vehicles that depreciate like a rock. The replacement for our 2005 Ram Cummins 4x4 is now priced at over $70K MSRP. We may never buy another new vehicle as a matter of principle. In this era of audio-visual learning, I am shifting from print media to creating a video library at Vimeo On Demand that will meet 4x4 light truck consumer needs. The aim is to produce HD videos that raise the competency of DIY techs, guys and gals willing to buy a truck like your prized '79 K2500 4x4 and restore it to ultra-reliable condition. A $12000-$20,000 investment in your truck would be worth every single dime. Sublet the body and paint to a highly competent shop that can eliminate rust issues; reupholster the seat and restore the interior; perform any mechanical work needed. Do the work to factory workshop standards and restore the truck to its original condition. Snag a copy of my Chevrolet & GMC Light Truck Owner's Bible® (Bentley Publishers, available at Amazon, Advance Adapters or from Bentley), you'll see how much I appreciate your truck...That book was written with your truck clearly in mind. Great armchair reading in your wintertime. Best regards, Moses
  5. Moses Ludel

    Corvair Aircraft Engine Conversion

    Stuart...Congratulations on your daughter's wedding! Also, there's nothing like the North Rim, we have approached from Nevada via Jacob Lake. Spectacular country...See below:
  6. Sounds like a plan, Speed...Curious how this works out. Slow but it will get there, right? Do you go up through Mountain City to Idaho? Lots of climbing out of Elko! Moses
  7. Hi, Speed! See my comments below...
  8. Moses Ludel

    How about Toyota Highlanders?

    It would be worth Google-ing the traction control issue, I'm sure others have experienced it, too. There may be a Toyota update or remedy. I would discuss the traction control system with your local dealership's service manager, he or she may have insight...Look to Consumer Report and possible NHTSA recalls related to the traction control.
  9. I'm pleased to hear this and certain that those close to the project are happy as well...Glad this worked out, Jeepdog! Keep us posted!
  10. No need to be embarrassed! This has been a real learning experience...Yes, and you're now expert on the T4/T5 transmission rebuild, too! Many engines have solid dowel pins in the block or bellhousing. The AMC engines have hollow pins that align the block and bellhousing; these hollow dowels also provide a bore for bolts to pass through. These bolts are vital when you consider the bellhousing-to-block bolt count. I'm very glad you resolved the issue, that's what matters! Noise with the floor pan out is always amplified. If you hear nothing with the cover in place, there's likely nothing wrong. (Carpet or floor mats add even more muting.) You were probably listening to normal noise of the transfer case gears and/or transmission gear sets. You have no other reason to suspect trouble after the conscientious work that you performed. Correct gear lube can make a difference when it comes to transmission/transfer case noise. The Dana 300 requires EP gear lubricant while the T4 transmission calls for ATF. I'm not a big fan of ATF in manual gearboxes, and we can discuss that further. For now, get some miles on that Jeep! Be sure everything works well and reliably, then have some fun! Moses
  11. BubbaQ1...Your CJ-7 is very nice! Although other reasons might dictate a later vehicle choice, you have an AMC/Jeep model that is prized by Jeep buffs—myself included...Let's begin with the assets of a 1985 Jeep CJ-7 and go from there: 1) Substantial, proven chassis, disc front brakes, Saginaw steering (power in your case?) and easy repair access. 2) Proven, rugged powertrain with the 4.2L inline six, a Dana 300 helical gear transfer case, an open-knuckle Dana 30 front axle and AMC Model 20 rear axle. 3) Fundamental electrical system, easier access and minimal electronics (only related to emissions and the engine). 4) Classic body tub styling with a quality hard top. Great accessories access for seats, armor, a winch and such. Whether you leave the vehicle stock or modify it, these are the upgrades needed for a stock vehicle: 1) Upgrade front wheel hubs to accept 6-bolt free-wheeling hubs; 5-bolt freewheeling hubs are weaker and tend to loosen and shear the bolts. Parts readily available for this upgrade. 2) The BBD carburetor is livable if blueprint rebuilt as I share at the magazine. Many benefit from an EFI conversion, either Mopar EFI or Howell TBI. This is a strong consideration, I've covered both approaches at the magazine and in books. Mopar EFI has been discussed and illustrated in my Jeep Owner's Bible and the Jeep CJ Rebuilder's Manual: 1972-86. The Rebuilder's Manual would be a handy book for your CJ Jeep work and plans. The prototype vehicle for that book was much like your Jeep CJ-7. 3) One-piece rear axle shafts are often discussed. They can be beneficial, especially with ultra-large tires. Your tires are not grossly oversized, you can "get by" with torquing the rear axle shaft nuts to factory specification and method. I discuss this in my Jeep CJ Rebuilder's Manual: 1972-86 and also at several AMC Model 20 discussions right here at the forums. (Use the search box keywords for the AMC Model 20.) 4) A heavy-duty transmission upgrade like 60Bubba's Warner T19 conversion covered here at the forums, an NV4500 like I illustrate in my Rebuilder's Manual or other options would each be considerations. The T4/T5 will need a rebuild at some point, these are not heavy-duty units. You have what appears to be a very clean and tastefully/mildly modified and upgraded CJ-7. I'm really drawn to these vehicles, they are rugged, handle reasonably well, and can deliver exceptional service. Easier to work on, too! As for a V-8 conversion or transmission upgrade beyond your T4 or T5, that's an option. 60Bubba is about to do a small-block Ford V-8 swap into his CJ-7, and we'll be discussing that project at the forums. We can discuss swaps further if you have a need for the power. You're in Washoe County and may need to consider emissions issues, we can explore that demand, too...As is, this Jeep can meet your described needs with ease! Regarding shops, my shop is full-time devoted to video production work and how-to projects for the magazine and Vimeo On Demand streaming rental topics. The aim is to serve Jeep and other vehicle owners with instructional guidelines to perform their own work. Not sure whether you have the desire or shop space for doing 'DIY' work, but that's where I can help...A 1985 Jeep CJ-7 4x4 is a terrific vehicle for the DIY learning curve. Also, I'd be delighted to discuss trails in our area and throughout Northern Nevada. It's springtime, snow is melting and the four-wheeling access gets better every day... Moses
  12. FAMILY FIRST, Scott...Sounds like Jims did a thorough job on the harness. Are the terminal ends molded? How do they handle the connections? Plug types? The OBD-II port is very useful if the OEM G.M. ECM is still storing codes. Nice! Electronic connections must be free of ohms resistance. I use rosin core solder and multi-layers of heat shrink tubing on interlaced wire splices. In it for the long haul! I like this approach... I took a peek at Jims Performance website (http://www.jimsperformance.com/). So, your harness for a L35 CPI system is custom and one-off for Jims? Does the shop also do TBI harnesses? Moses
  13. Ummm...No crankshaft/flywheel movement? These questions come up: 1) So are all of the bellhousing bolts intact, the thread integrity of the bolts and block okay? (Bolts are in good condition and not "stretching"?) It's virtually impossible for the bellhousing itself to flex, there has to be something yielding here. The cast aluminum bellhousing would break before stretching this much. 2) The clutch finger resistance shouldn't be great enough to force the bellhousing to separate from the block. The pedal pressure would be enormous, and you have mechanical clutch linkage that would create a lot of pedal pressure/resistance and sensation. Is the clutch cover stock replacement force/pressure? Do you feel a lot of resistance at the clutch pedal? 3) Do you see an actual gap between the bellhousing and the shim/spacer or the engine block with the clutch pedal depressed? Is the housing sliding or is it moving straight away from the block? 4) Are the bellhousing bolts too long, running out of threads and stopping before the housing is flush with the shim/spacer and block? Does the bellhousing appear to fit flush and tightly against the shim and block without applied pedal pressure? 4) Are the block bellhousing dowels in position? Are the bellhousing's dowel bores concentric, a good (i.e. snug) fit to the dowels? Are the dowels preventing the bellhousing from fitting snuggly against the shim and block (dowels too long, distorted or warped)? 5) Is there any kind of gap or interference preventing the housing from fitting flush—like dowels bottoming in the bellhousing bores? Moses
  14. Jeepdog...In the first video, is the bellhousing moving or the flywheel? If the flywheel is moving fore/aft while securely attached to the crankshaft flange, you have a crankshaft that is moving fore/aft. This would indicate a worn crankshaft thrust bearing, or the crankshaft main thrust bearing is either out of place or worn. Did you have the engine apart? If I'm right about the flywheel moving, and if the flywheel is securely flush with the crankshaft flange, check the crankshaft end float at either the flywheel or the front/crank pulley end. Normal crankshaft endplay for a 1983 Jeep 258/4.2L is 0.0015" to 0.0065" (think 0.001"+ to 0.006"+). This is not much. If the crankshaft is moving fore-and-aft much more than this amount, you would have a significant amount of engine rattle and risk of damage to the connecting rods, crankshaft bearings, etc. Measure the crankshaft end float. In the second video, the back-and-forth disk movement could simply be the input gear rotating. This would be the movement between the input, cluster and other gears. Some rotational movement is normal. The disk should also move fore-and-aft some with the clutch pedal depressed: the cover's pressure plate is pulled away from the disk's friction face, which allows the disk to "float" some on the input splines some. There is also some rocking flex in the disk. If the crankshaft pilot bearing, the input gear's nose and the input gear splines are all okay, the disk movement would be normal. The input gear's nose diameter must match the crankshaft pilot bearing inner diameter. The input gear and disk should not be moving out of center if the input gear is supported properly between the crankshaft pilot bearing and the transmission input bearing. Please share what you find...I'm focused on crankshaft movement fore-and-aft and whether the disk is supported on center by the input gear. Now we're getting somewhere...Thanks for posting the graphic videos. Moses
  15. Jeepdog...Yes, for changing the rear axle pinion angle you will be placing wedge-shaped shims between the axle's spring perches and the spring. Use steel wedges, not aluminum, angled evenly at each rear spring. Shim wedges are available in the aftermarket, a common need. Make sure the wedge width and spring center bolt hole size are correct for your CJ's rear springs. Again, visualize the rear axle's pinion shaft in straight alignment with the driveshaft (side view). The Jeep must be at curb/static vehicle height with normal weight on the springs. I take the pinion shaft (side view) angle downward at the pinion flange until the rear U-joint angle is 1.5 to 2-degrees. This may not seem like much angle, but it's necessary for U-joint life. The reasoning is simple: Your double-Cardan CV joint (front of the rear driveline) angles cancel each other out. So the rear single joint does not need its former angle. But it does need a very slight angle to keep the U-joint's needle bearings moving and lubricating. Moses