Engine back in the Car!!

Getting the engine in was really easy from below. I've removed the engine from the top and this was much better overall! I did this work in 2 days about 10 hours a day. 20 hours total.

The first task was getting the engine off the stand and get it mated up with the transmission. I replace all of the original clutch parts, clutch disk, aluminum flywheel, and friction plate. The original clutch parts were working when I tore the car down but I didn't really want to risk having a clutch go out once the car is back together. Its money well spent.

I had already put the transmission back together and installed the clutch slave and throw out bearing. You can see the new Friction plate ready to go on in the background. Before I installed the fly wheel I bolted the clutch friction plate up with the flywheel and balanced it as best I could. To my eye it seemed well balanced right out of the box. I also tapped out the Metric threads and went with larger 3/8" NC thread bolts to hold the friction plate to the aluminum flywheel. Aluminum is very soft and fine threads will strip out quite easily if over torqued. The larger course threads are better for high stress applications.

I replaced the original pilot bushing and flywheel alignment pins. I bolted up the flywheel and torqued it down to 150 foot pounds. The next step is to bolt up the clutch disk, and friction plate. To do this you need a special tool, (not shown) to align the clutch disk in the center of the pilot hole. Once the disk is aligned tightening down on the friction plate cover locks the disk in place.

I had positioned the engine on the dolly so I could slide the transmission on easily. I did this by myself with some blocks of wood under the tranny and a good bit of sweat and cursing. She is all mated up now. I still need to put on a few small parts like the lower bell housing cover and brackets.

Engine cranes are a great thing! Here I'm getting the motor ready to go on the car. I will put the starter on, and the rest of the small parts around the transmission. I'll also do some testing to make sure everything is turning freely before I install the motor.

I first had to jack the car up with the floor jack to get the shifter and transmission to go under the picture frame. My hoist isn't deep enough to reach the car with the engine between its legs. I very carefully pulled the car up with the crane attached to the bonnet mount. This is probably something I wouldn't recommend, I had a new CJs bonnet mount which seemed pretty strong and the car without engine isn't really that heavy.

The rolling back board was way beyond spec. with 600 pound of engine and transmission, however it held up, and made life allot easier positioning the engine. After the engine was back under the picture frame I'm ready to start lowering the car over the engine.

Here you can see the transmission coming up from below. The drive shaft will push back just enough to allow the flange to slip by. Its a tight fit but manageable.

The engine stabilizer link is easily seen here. Its a tight squeeze behind the motor to line up the link. I used new top and bottom washers on this and chased the threads out on the link so it was easy to spin the bottom washer up to meet the bottom of the mount. After the engine is up and in place I tightened up the bottom nut until the engine is locked into place, and then the top nut was tightened as well to completely lock the engine in. I used a little red lock tight on this to make sure the nuts don't back out.

With the engine fully under the car I lowered the car back onto its wheels and reset the engine crane to lift the engine in place. I discovered that the front engine lift point I had on the second row of studs from the front was not a good balance point for the complete engine so I put a rear lift hook further back, on the second row from the back studs. This turned out to be the perfect balance point to lift the engine vertically.

One small over sight on my part was the engine mounts. These are clearly not going to make it past the mount points on the car. Fortunately they are removable. Next time I'll just leave them off. It was a simple matter to get them off.

After removing the mounts the engine lifted up into place and I bolted the mounts back on. I also removed the rubber engine mounts and put them onto the engine side mounts. Then just lined up the holes on the sub frame with a screw driver and installed the bolts.

Its all bolted in now. I was able to do this without any damage to the paint surprisingly.

Now for the hard part, the transmission support spring unit went in easily but the cross member support was a real bear. I ended up having to take the front suspension apart and reset the torque arm to get this in place. The brace was slightly to wide after all the powder coat and paint. I had to grind down the ends of the support slightly. Working under the car getting this part in was not much fun and took almost two days to get it tied in and re install the front suspension. I think If the part had fitted properly I could have avoided the torque arm reset, by using dummy shafts as described in the shop manual.

After getting the cross member in its back to all the little details. Electrical system, cooling system, Exhaust, brakes and clutch bleeding, fuel lines, Carbs, choke, gauges. Its really looking like a car now. I can almost hear it running!

Next up,Getting it ready to run!

Author: Bill McKenna