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  1. #1
    Junior Member Arctic. Light's Avatar
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    The built j10 that never lived

    Here is the sad story of my dads j10 that will hopefully live again.



    We bought this truck from an old man the guy that built this truck. Looked mean, looked powerful. Sounded awesome. We bought the truck for around 4k, we thought it was a steal. After driving around alot it would have alot of smoke....blow by i think...would smoke almost every time we drove it....it started getting harder and harder to start. I eventually got it to start by adjusting the carburetors....with my limited knowledge of them at least....and with this thing having dual 4 barrel carburetors....made it challenging. Now.....it does not run or move 10 feet without dumping starter fluid in it. Afterwords doing alittle research I found that the old man sold the truck once before!!, sold it to another older gentleman who then told me his story he sold him the truck as a completely different year! and this guys friend also had to rebuild part of the motor, even afterwords his friend said the motor seemed weak. So after engine issues. and having the vin removed the guy FORCED the guy to give him his money back or he would call the police. Even though we have the vin now....we still got a dud motor. The other guy i was talking to said also, we arnt going to be able to go back to him either. Since the other guy is friends with the old guys neighbor he found out. Shortly after we bought it from him, he died. Now thats not useful is it? Oh well. Now it is looking good right now though, we have the money saved up to get the engine rebuilt by a local race engine guy. Just need to get my friends together and yank it out. Here was the specs of the truck that i know. I really dont know what alot of it means. lol

    AMC 360
    Balanced Engine
    40 Over
    Hi lift cam
    10 1/2 to 1 pistons
    Roller Rockers
    Dual Edelbrock 500 carbs on Offenhauser 360 manifold
    Shorty headers
    Cherry bomb mufflers with duals exiting out rear
    Electric fuel pump
    Electric ignition
    Electric dual-fans w/ adjustable thermostat
    Over-size cooling
    High-Torque starter
    Dana 44's with open 2.73 rear ratio
    Chrysler 727 Torque-Flite transmission
    NP 208 Transfer Case

    and here is the motor itself




    and here are just some other pictures of her interior and exterior!










    Last but not least i wanted to ask you speed freaks. Think we are making the right decision having this engine rebuilt by a reputable builder by us??? Or should we have just got a remanufactured engine?

  2. #2
    im super special x10radsponge's Avatar
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    I would have weighed the costs between builder and a block from say summit or Jegs. New 408's can go for up to 3500 dollars. Not sure what labor may fun but at 50-80 and hour now plus machining and new parts if needed it could be close. I hope it lives again. Had to watch a fairly decent Honcho get crushed.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by x10radsponge View Post
    I would have weighed the costs between builder and a block from say summit or Jegs. New 408's can go for up to 3500 dollars. Not sure what labor may fun but at 50-80 and hour now plus machining and new parts if needed it could be close. I hope it lives again. Had to watch a fairly decent Honcho get crushed.
    It's an AMC 360, not a MOPAR. Different bolt pattern, and going to a MOPAR engine would require a "normal" 727 and engine mount adapters. You're not going to be able to order a crate AMC 360 from Summit or Jegs, and there are very few places who do AMC crate engines these days anyway. That being said, AMC 360s aren't hard to find. AMC 401s are rare nuggets made of gold (with a high nickel content). The only real option for a "basic" crate engine is from ATK, but that'll be a stock rebuild.



    That being said, I LOVE ME SOME AMC POWER!!! That truck is GORGEOUS. The grill is also my favorite of all the FSJ grills; I even prefer it over the Rhino grill for most purposes. As for your engine, start by ditching that intake. I wouldn't even do dual- 4-bbl carbs on my 401 unless I was doing a full-on race-car build in an AMX or a Javelin. You've got 1000 cfm available to a 360. I recognize that you've bumped compression up and it's punched out .040, but I doubt it has a solid roller-lifer .67 lift cam with huge overlap and an adjustable valve train, which would perform so poorly between idle and 4000 RPM that it wouldn't be streetable. How does it idle right now? You should have at least a basic idea as to the size of the cam based on how it loves or hates sitting at 700 RPM.

    So where to begin! Start with the basics: compression check and leak-down test. Any competent shop should be able to do both of those things for you, and it'll give you a good idea whether the valve train and/or rings are toast. If it's bad, then yes, you're looking at a rebuild. Like I mentioned, there are still a few builders who will deliver you a "crate" AMC V8, but you'll be just as good looking around your area and finding a competent speed-shop that has AMC experience. Yes, they exist; AMC cars are still commonly raced today, which means there's a strong (but limited) aftermarket following for AMC V8s. And there's enough Jeep guys around to keep rebuilders mostly in the know. That being said, an AMC isn't like any old Ford, Chevy, or MOPAR. Your builder should be aware of AMC quirks and have some AMC experience.

    If the compression check and leak-down test come back within reason, then just ditch the intake and put on a regular Edelbrock Performer or an Air-gap, with ONE 4-bbl carb. Or even a stock cast-iron AMC 4-bbl intake. Your drivability should increase immediately. You should also have the carb tuned by somebody who actually knows how to tune carbs.

    As for other AMC performance, I'm excited that you're here, but I'm a rare bird on this forum with an AMC 401, and I hang out here solely because of my wife's 5.9L ZJ. You'll find the AMC experts two places: http://www.IFSJ.org, and http://theamcforum.com/forum/ That being said, PLEASE keep posting here too!

    My 401:



  4. #4
    im super special x10radsponge's Avatar
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    Sweet 401. You stay here also sir. Very knowledgeable and I don't want to chase you over have of Gores Internet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by x10radsponge View Post
    Sweet 401. You stay here also sir. Very knowledgeable and I don't want to chase you over have of Gores Internet.
    I'm not going anywhere! My wife and I love her 5.9L ZJ too much. I just haven't had any wrenching time in basically the last three months. I did the front control arms in . . . October? November work picked up on me, I had two weekend out of town, and then we were gone for two+ weeks over Thanksgiving to visit family and for a wedding. I came back to December holiday commitments, and then a hunting trip from 12/25-1/1, back into a weekend trip and work craziness. Thus, no down time, no garage time, and no post updates. I barely got the guns cleaned for the hunting trip, and still haven't finished unpacking or cleaning up since we got back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK-RWC View Post
    As for other AMC performance, I'm excited that you're here, but I'm a rare bird on this forum with an AMC 401, and I hang out here solely because of my wife's 5.9L ZJ. You'll find the AMC experts two places: http://www.IFSJ.org, and http://theamcforum.com/forum/ That being said, PLEASE keep posting here too!
    Rare bird, yes... but not alone! My 401 is nothing like the work of art yours is though.
    I still have my '79 Cherokee Chief, into which I swapped a 401 with a torque cam, 4bbl carb, dual shortie exhaust, etc. No Indy heads, metallic paint or billet valve covers. But, oh my god. The torque.
    Unlike the 5.9-5.2 relationship, the AMC 401 is a completely different block from the AMC 360, with special goodies like forged steel crankshaft and rods, and a beefier low end. I think it takes different heads and exhaust manifold (correct me if I'm wrong here - it's been about 20 years). They are hard to find though... even 20 years ago it took some searching to find a donor block (all the AMC drag race guys snapped them up), but man was it worth the effort! Best chances now are from a Grand Wagoneer from the early 80's.
    It doesn't get much love with my 5.9 around, but maybe after the niner upgrades are done I'll clean up the Chief for off road.

  7. #7
    Junior Member Arctic. Light's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AK-RWC View Post
    It's an AMC 360, not a MOPAR. Different bolt pattern, and going to a MOPAR engine would require a "normal" 727 and engine mount adapters. You're not going to be able to order a crate AMC 360 from Summit or Jegs, and there are very few places who do AMC crate engines these days anyway. That being said, AMC 360s aren't hard to find. AMC 401s are rare nuggets made of gold (with a high nickel content). The only real option for a "basic" crate engine is from ATK, but that'll be a stock rebuild.



    That being said, I LOVE ME SOME AMC POWER!!! That truck is GORGEOUS. The grill is also my favorite of all the FSJ grills; I even prefer it over the Rhino grill for most purposes. As for your engine, start by ditching that intake. I wouldn't even do dual- 4-bbl carbs on my 401 unless I was doing a full-on race-car build in an AMX or a Javelin. You've got 1000 cfm available to a 360. I recognize that you've bumped compression up and it's punched out .040, but I doubt it has a solid roller-lifer .67 lift cam with huge overlap and an adjustable valve train, which would perform so poorly between idle and 4000 RPM that it wouldn't be streetable. How does it idle right now? You should have at least a basic idea as to the size of the cam based on how it loves or hates sitting at 700 RPM.

    So where to begin! Start with the basics: compression check and leak-down test. Any competent shop should be able to do both of those things for you, and it'll give you a good idea whether the valve train and/or rings are toast. If it's bad, then yes, you're looking at a rebuild. Like I mentioned, there are still a few builders who will deliver you a "crate" AMC V8, but you'll be just as good looking around your area and finding a competent speed-shop that has AMC experience. Yes, they exist; AMC cars are still commonly raced today, which means there's a strong (but limited) aftermarket following for AMC V8s. And there's enough Jeep guys around to keep rebuilders mostly in the know. That being said, an AMC isn't like any old Ford, Chevy, or MOPAR. Your builder should be aware of AMC quirks and have some AMC experience.

    If the compression check and leak-down test come back within reason, then just ditch the intake and put on a regular Edelbrock Performer or an Air-gap, with ONE 4-bbl carb. Or even a stock cast-iron AMC 4-bbl intake. Your drivability should increase immediately. You should also have the carb tuned by somebody who actually knows how to tune carbs.

    As for other AMC performance, I'm excited that you're here, but I'm a rare bird on this forum with an AMC 401, and I hang out here solely because of my wife's 5.9L ZJ. You'll find the AMC experts two places: http://www.IFSJ.org, and http://theamcforum.com/forum/ That being said, PLEASE keep posting here too!

    Thanks for all the info, and yes i forgot to say that we are DITCHING that intake almost everyone i talked to said that is stupid. We have done the leakdown and compression last year. She is shot. It barely idles at all, the only way she budges is starter fluid right now. Only way to drive it is basically never brake and keep the rpm's up. stalls out instantly. Thats why we are thinking the best method is since we think someone attempted to put money into this money but failed at building the thing. The best idea might be bringing it to the expert rebuilder around here. lol.......and belive me...we spent the time looking for a amc 401....we were thinking about it. LOL

  8. #8
    Forum CONDUCTOR Man Z88Z's Avatar
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    AK covered that very well

    Arctic - that is an awesome looking truck. AK - that is an awesome looking motor.


    I remember seeing the new AMXs at my local AMC dealerships with the 401 "Go Package". Fell in love with the Powder Blue one they had, and it's one of the very few non-Mopars I'd still like to own.

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    The generation III AMC V8s are all externally identical, and all parts can be bolted into each other. That being said, they are also externally balanced, so flywheels and harmonic balancers are engine-specific. 304 heads use smaller valves. The 360 and 401 use the same heads. Although you can bolt 360/401 heads onto a 304, the valves will kiss the block. Intake manifolds are all interchangeable, as are exhaust manifolds. Internally, the 401 block has thicker main-bearing webbing, a forged crank, forged rods, and forged pistons.

  10. #10
    Member ZJ-John's Avatar
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    Is that at the ADB machine shop?

    Quote Originally Posted by AK-RWC View Post
    My 401:


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZJ-John View Post
    Is that at the ADB machine shop?
    Yup.

  12. #12
    Member ZJ-John's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AK-RWC View Post
    Yup.


    Nice

  13. #13
    Member SilverXJ's Avatar
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    That is a gorgeous truck

  14. #14
    Junior Member Arctic. Light's Avatar
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    The project begins again, just got dropped off at the shop today, shes going to live again for this summer! Gonna see exactly whats wrong with the old girl, and if the engine is salvageable, gonna get it rebuilt.

  15. #15
    Member xaza's Avatar
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    I hope the guy you found is an AMC mechanic. AMC motors take a mechanic that knows them very well to get them to run right. I would not be surprised if getting carbs tuned was only issue, but could easily have destroyed catalytic convertor already. The motor is at 40 over already which means you are very near the end of the life of that block if you rebuild it again, I believe recommended is no more than .045. You may find more useful help from the guys on the AMC forum.
    http://amccars.net/cgi/yabb2/YaBB.pl
    We do not remember days, we remember moments.

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  16. #16
    Junior Member Arctic. Light's Avatar
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    We just brought it to a offroad shop to get it pulled. However we arnt bringing it to an AMC mechanic....however we are bringing it to a VERY reputable local engine guy "Lawrence Racing Engines" However your making me do alot more research now, because the few people we have talked to said their shouldn't be an issue going 60 over...im going to be on the internet a long time tonight. Probably going to make an account over at amc cars. We just got the engine back from the shop they did a light look at the motor. It has busted rings and a scored wall. The stupid carburetor setup made it run way too rich. However here are some update pictures of taking the motor home today, we are going to be droping it off at the engine shop tomorrow.




  17. #17
    Member xaza's Avatar
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    That is a thick block and there are many guys running them honed 60. Typically "recommended" is playing it extra safe. Trust the people who have experience with the AMC 360 and keep us updated. I don't have personal experience with this block just so you know, I just do a lot of reading.
    We do not remember days, we remember moments.

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