the BIG RED Restoration !

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Jun 12, 2011
Well, I've owned this one for a little over two years now. I thought that it was time I finally put together a build thread for it and document some of what I've been doing. Its a 94 with lockers and no factory roof rack. I purchased it with about 180k on the clock. I did extensive PM the first year I had it. Currently its undergoing an engine overhaul due to a failed head gasket at the #6 cylinder. After I get it running again i'm going to start managing some of the rust and most likely will monstaliner the whole rig. This is actually my wifes rig and when i'm fininshed with it I can finally start paying a little more attention to mine.



First up, a gently used Old Man Emu stock height suspension to replace the worn and sagging OEM setup. After that a quick trip to the tire shop for a set of tie rod ends and some new shoes. A big thank you to Devo for a fantastic price on the suspension and being super easy to do business with.



The current state of things. Motor is out, head is back from the machine shop, just pulled the pistons this afternoon in order to clean out the bores. Time to get a quote on some new rings. I know its best practices to replace your rings if you pull the pistons, does anyone know if you have to replace your bearings as well ?



Rotating assembly is out, this motors got a big crank ! Had some water staining on number 5, other than that the bores looked great. The factory hone marks were still clearly visible. Bearings looked pretty good, some minor scratching and galling, but they are getting replaced since I'm already in here.



It took most of the day but I got all the big stuff painted. I also too the opportunity to clean out the engine bay with the pressure washer. There was years of accumulated grease and oil caked on top of the axle and steering components. It looks a lot nicer now and should be much more enjoyable to work in.



Waiting for parts now. As soon as my rings show up I will load up the block and take it down to the machine shop to have it honed to proper specs. I will also have the machinist look at the pitting on the deck and give me his impression of it. I'm hoping to start re-assembling by next week. Need to pull the PS gearbox and install the rebuild. Also need to call Cdan and get a new injector clip for the one I broke.
Thanks guys. I've just been taking my time with it trying to do one thing a day. I've found that if you make yourself just do one thing, even if its something small, the project eventually gets done instead of stalling out. I'm looking forward to putting the rotating assembly back in and getting this thing bolted back together.
What? No blue printing?

It's like the perfect time:flipoff2:

All you need is mineral oil, food coloring, mL eye dropper, one of each valve, some clear plex and an air powered carbide bit...oh and a lot of time.
Looks really good. What size are those tires? Any clearance issues so far?

Those are 285/75/16 Goodyear Duratrac's. There are no clearance issues. Even without the lift they would have been fine. The OME stock height actually brings the truck up an inch front and back.

What? No blue printing?

It's like the perfect time:flipoff2:

All you need is mineral oil, food coloring, mL eye dropper, one of each valve, some clear plex and an air powered carbide bit...oh and a lot of time.

Judging from the FSM specs the lower end is damn near blueprinted from the factory. I had been sweating this for the last week since I ordered the Clevite bearings for it. I thought I might F something up using a rod bearing that was .0003 undersize, now I'm thinking it will be just fine. Dropped the block off at NAPA today to get the cylinders honed for new rings. The engine master there is going to deck the block down in order to take care of some pitting around #6.
I had to take a gram or two off two pistons and I think three rods. All very close though.

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