Well before AEV started selling its Brute kit you could build a mini Jeep pick-up by adding a two-seat cab to a CJ-6. That’s exactly the setup that Brian Russel of Willis, Michigan, is running on his super-nice, dark blue ’72 CJ-6. The vintage long-bed is powered by an AMC 304 that spins the factory three-speed, Dana 20 transfer case, and a set of Dana 44s. Alcoa 589 aluminum wheels are wrapped with 33x12.50R15 Remington Wide Brutes. The tires are kept out of the vintage sheetmetal by a simple, yet effective 2-inch suspension lift. Brian’s plan was for the Jeep to look good, and yep, Brian, it looks good!
James Schaerfl of El Paso, Texas, sent us a question about auto tranny cooler line routing and in the mix he included this beautiful shot of his ’84 OD Green Wagoneer in the dunes. James’ Jeep spins 35x12.50R15 Goodyear MT/Rs via the factory Dana 44 and AMC 20. Both axles hold G2 4.56:1 gears spun buy a shift kit’d TF727 transmission and factory NP229. Power comes from a rebuilt AMC 360 with a catalog list of Edelbrock parts to assist aspiration and an MSD ignition to up the spark. Tire clearance is care of Rusty’s Off Road suspension along with a mild body lift and some careful fender trimming. The York A/C compressor has been converted to on-board air with a 3-gallon auxiliary tank. Best part about this Jeep is that James did all the mods himself, including designing and building the custom roof rack. James admits to dreams of an Atlas II and custom Dana 60s, but for now is quite pleased with how the Jeep works in the dunes and rocks of West Texas.
Jp Family Truckster
This baby blue ’83 CJ-7 was bought by Keith Evans to serve as a father and son project with his six-year-old. The CJ is basically stock, running the 258 I-6, five-speed, Dana 300, AMC 20, and Dana 30. Besides the custom baby blue hue we also noticed some heavy-duty shackles up front and that pimpin’ Datsun pick-up bed camper. Apparently, Keith picked up the CJ complete with the trailer for $5,000 and is enjoying all the attention he gets while driving the ’83. Keith wants to keep the CJ-7 fairly stock, but does plan to lift it a touch. Check out that paint as the CJ visits the Grand Canyon on the Griswold family tour of the Southwest. Next stop Wally World!
Black Hills’ Black Rubicon
Bill and Velvet Gillen bought and built this mildly modded ’05 Rubicon Unlimited to play in the rocks of the Black Hills of South Dakota. Simple modifications include a 3-inch TeraFlex suspension lift, while Poison Spyder Customs Rocker Knockers help retain the LJ tub’s factory lines in spite of rocks. The 4.0L six-cylinder turns an NP241 via a six-speed manual en route to the factory Dana 44 axles. Stock Rubicon Moab wheels are wrapped in 285/75R16 Goodyear MT/Rs. Rumor has it that the black LJ conquered the Black Hills trail named Iceman with barely 3,500 miles on the odometer! Rock on, Bill and Velvet!
Scott Eller from Rock Hill, South Carolina, has taken what was a plane-Jane ’95 XJ and built it into a serious trail machine with a few tricks and budget upgrades all while seeing duty as a daily driver. The Cherokee sports a 6-inch Rough Country suspension system to keep the Dana 30 front and Ford 8.8 out of the Unitbody while the Jeep flexes on the trail. A Warn 8274 mounted on a home-built front bumper lends a hand if the mud gets too deep for those 35x12.50R15 Dunlop Mud Rovers. A home-built 4.6L stroker spins 4.56 gears while some massaged TJ flares cover trimmed front wheel wells.