Featured Hand built H1 Hummer

Discussion in 'Vehicle Build-Ups' started by ottenbuilt, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    I am a competent metal fabricator and I plan on building a H1 hummer.

    I had the opportunity to buy a good condition Hmmwv A2 rolling chassis. I almost went for it but I didn't. My reasons:

    Independent suspension = drive off a 1 Foot ledge and start balancing on 2 or 3 wheels.

    Portal hubs = yes they look amazing and are sweet for off road use. The con (for me) they lower your final drive ratio (higher rps on the highway lower top speed). This is very important for me as this vehicle will be my road trip machine and will see a lot of highway driving .

    Parts availability = I plan on modding the engine and transmission. The factory half shafts are not meant to handle 400-500 horsepower and a ton of torque. Upgrading these costs a fortune. The dodge is sporting the proven dana 70 in rear (quite capable of easily handling that kind of power) and the dana 60 up front (an amazing axle except for the garbage unit bearings which I plan on replacing).

    Cost = I have to look at what I am capable of doing with my super limited resources (I don't even have a working engine hoist or torque wrench ) in a decent time-frame ( I am still remodeling my destroyed house working full time, running all aspects of my bike company, fixing my brothers trucks and riding bmx). I desperately need more than 24 hours in a day.

    The plan is to build a new hummer body over the top of the dodge chassis.

    I am starting by building an outline of the outside profile using 1x1 and 2x1 .065 wall steel tubing. I plan on doing a double wall style body with insulation in the middle all the while making the interior as roomy as possible. I also plan on using tons of real hummer parts. Real hood, tailgate, metal roof, double bead-lock wheels with run-flats, real hmmwv doors with bullet proof glass, bullet proof windshield... you get the picture.

    Out side will be authentic while the inside will be completely custom.

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  2. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    Here is the lack of a dashboard in my second gen. No AC, no heater,(bad heater core) fan or vents even a broken knob.
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  3. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    When I bought my second gen it didn't turn over nearly as easily as my old first gen. So here begin the starting upgrades.
    I replaced the fuel shot off solenoid with a Larry Bs. When lined up side by side they look the same, maybe it was already replaced and I am switching it out for an identical unit. Well nonetheless its new now. The truck still starts like the battery are low though... (battery's are not low they are showing normal charge).
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  4. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    When I purchased my fuel shot off solenoid I also picked up a starter rebuild kit. When I loosened the starter bolts I found they were only hand tight??
    Optima red top batteries and starter were pulled then pressure washed.
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  5. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    The rebuild kit went smoothly until I broke one of the isolators. Thankfully there is a automotive electrical specialty shop across town. I picked up a new one for next to nothing as well as a new bolt and external isolator. The starter had definitely been messed with there was a 3/8-16 nut cross-threaded onto the positive bolt. I opted for ny-lock nuts over traditional ones, also repacked the bearing with good grease. Judging by how filthy the brushes in the motor were I am sure there will be some type of difference in starting.
    LarryB's products are very good as well, I would not hesitate to buy them again.

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  6. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    I reinstalled the starter and put the batteries back in after cleaning everything up... and it still is a hard cold start. It starts fine once its warm but when its cold I am never sure if its actual going to turn over.


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  7. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    The 12 valve is still not wanting to start, I was getting it to start (barely) even after leaving the block heater plugged in for a couple hours. Well that isn't working anymore either... Things got serious last weekend. I needed to haul a piece of machinery, the trailer was rented and everyone was waiting on me. I had left the truck plugged in for a couple hours and no start. I ended up borrowing my brothers 2nd gen 2wd 12 valve (we just replaced the ball joints and and tie rod ends the night before and the alignment was way off). I didn't like putting his truck through that and I was determined to fix my starting issue. I started inspecting all the connections and somehow overlooked this toasted connection at the battery positive lead. I couldn't find an 18ga fusable link so I used a 16ga one and soldered it to the existing 18ga link. I also pulled both batteries and dropped them off at autozone for testing. I came back a day later to pick up my batteries and the diagnosis "bad batteries" they will not hold a charge. I was quite bummed to say the least these are OPTIMA red tops!! Well there is no way in hell I can afford 2 more of these so I had to settle for 2 standard diesel batteries. The battery hold downs were beat as hell, two of the bolts were frozen and they just need to be replaced. I made some new battery hold down bolts out of 1/4-20 all thread and nuts. While removing the old clip nuts one broke out a chunk of the battery tray. I made a patch out of 1/8" plastic and a SS screw. I cleaned everything up and started the truck. It was 55 degrees out side and the truck fired up like it was hot. No more slow cranking! It fires up on the first crank, I am quite pleased to say the least.
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  8. A98Wheeler

    A98Wheeler Well-Known Member

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    I'm interested to see how this proceeds
     
  9. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    Second gen dodge diesels are pretty awesome except for the KDP issue and the front axle mainly the unit bearing and CAD (central axle disconnect).
    I have been looking at doing a conversion like one of these

    http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/dodge/1000570-my-hub-conversion-story-lots-pics.html

    http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/dodge/874442-dodge-ram-2500-4x4-dana-60-hub-removal-converison-ford-knuckles.html

    Yukon also makes a one piece passenger shaft. This would bypass the CAD system. Throw in some manual ford hubs and you have a pretty sweet axle!

    http://www.autopartswarehouse.com/sku/Dodge/Ram_2500/Yukon_Gear_-and-_Axle/Axle_Assembly/1995/YUKYAW26030.html?apwcid=productads&003=27846857&010=apwYUKYAW260301995dora25axas&gclid=CJ-xoODe2MECFVKPfgodsHoA-A&c_aid=40851160064&c2cid=e474e098-cd9c-478a-9356-20c185b888a9

    Then there is this guy. This is probably the most expensive route but it is quite badass!!

    http://www.pavementsucks.com/tech-article-15.html
     
  10. Tango

    Tango Well-Known Member

    my front axel is similar. Free spin hubs, 35 spline axels, CAD delete, Eaton TrueTrac in the front diff.
    adjustable track bar, 4" springs, 5100 shocks, and adjustable control arms.

    It used to be you needed 35 spline axels to get a locker in the front, might be something new out there now.
     
  11. swirvin21

    swirvin21 New Member

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    I know you're all the way out in Cali, but I know a guy here in Dallas with one of the Hummer body kits made by TREX for a reasonable price. Think he only wants around $4000 for the chassis. It's a complete body, fully welded, has 4 doors, tailgate and windshield frame, but needs hood. It is a virgin body, never installed or painted so it has some surface rust. Honestly, for what you're planning on doing and the time/materials you'll need to do a job like this, you really should consider utilizing some of the available components.

    Tremor MUV sells plans for you to build your own H1 and they are well liked by Hummer enthusiasts for accuracy and quality. Think they sell plans for a few hundred, so at least look into it:
    http://www.tremormuv.com/shop/cdroms:-build-chronicles_1/

    There was an article on the kits, but most are not available anymore: http://www.fourwheeler.com/how-to/body-chassis/131-9809-hummer-look-alike-rebody-kits/

    The most popular right now is the Guerilla, but it isn't full width: http://www.4x4bodies.com/models--pricing.html

    If you are interested in the TREX here in dallas I can help broker a deal for you!
     
  12. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys! I appreciate the information. I actually owned a kit hummer for a while. A classic roadsters badlands 4 door replica. Made mostly out of 11 gauge steel it was quite heavy. It also was mounted to a 90 suburban chassis. The naturally aspired 6.2 diesel engine coupled with the turbo 400 transmission made it quite slow. Getting everything used I built it in a couple years. It was fun but knowing what I know now I want less weight and more power. This is why I want to incorporate more aluminum and a different drive train.

    my old rig
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  13. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    After a lot of looking I and a couple friends drove for a few hours to meet up with a fellow selling a 1989 Ford high pinion king pin Dana 60 out of an F-350 dually with 4.10 gears. I had been talking with guy over the internet for a while and he knew exactly what he had. But $1100 and couple hundred miles later I had a new axle in front of my house, and we fit some BMX in to this journey as well. Now I have an axle that needs to stripped of its mounts, coil buckets added and full rebuild.

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  14. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    Here are a couple more pics of the axle. Here is a shot of the glorious serviceable selectable hubs, it also shows those massive lugs. There is also a close up on one of the king pin knuckles...no ball joints here. You may also notice that there is no central axle disconnect system. The icing on the cake here is that this is a dually axle. I was a bit uncomfortable running aluminum wheel spacers up front and this addresses that issue as well. As you can probably tell I am pumped on this axle. I also picked up another Dana 60 front, out of a 2001 dodge (missing hubs and calipers) for the coil spring buckets. I will post pics up soon. The last pic has both axles in it as well as a lathe I am restoring... I have way to many in-depth projects running at the same time, but I digress. I know buying another dodge axle seems a bit overkill but having the coil spring buckets will allow my truck to be drivable the entire time I am am building the new axle. I want to take my time and do everything correct, when you rush things it always turns out bad. After the swap is complete I will sell the complete and partial dodge axles.

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  15. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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  16. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    I borrowed a plasma cutter from a friend of mine. Upon getting home I discovered the pug on the plasma cutter is not compatible with the 220 dryer outlet. I run to home depot in to buy an adapter, I do not find any.....so I bought a new outlet that will work with the plasma cutter. I got home changed the outlet and set up the plasma cutter and started cutting. You have to cut the back of the coil buckets to remove them from the axle. There was a half inch of weld I could not get to. After a half an hour of prying the weld gave and the bucket broke free.

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  17. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    I took the plasma cutter to the ford axle as well.

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  18. ottenbuilt

    ottenbuilt Well-Known Member

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    After I ground down the mounts and wire wheeled the axle I got a little O.C.D. and sanded down some of the casting seams on the diff as well.
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