Would have been nice to be able to leave it in the 'package' as it sits here but unfortunately the axle centreline is too far back for the Willys. I will leave all the suspension, diff, steering, swaybar etc connected to the engine cradle and just make new engine mounts to attach to the same frame further back. Will have to over come some things like the oil filter than getting in the way then, but will work something out. You can see also that I have carefully removed the front coil over and upper wishbone mounts from the Grand to reuse on the Willys frame along with the inner mounting points from inside the Grands frame. The Willys frame will be re-contoured to follow the exact outer dimensions of the Grand so these mounts and others will be in the same place.


I have kept the rear quarter panels intact as not a mark on them and hoping they can be sold off at some point along with much interior panels etc from the rear of the Grand.


I made myself up a bit of a rotisserie from two cheap engine stands that I made higher. These were rated at 560 kg each so should be more than enough for what I am using them for and for under  $100 together. Much friendlier on my back when you work alone and have to flip it often. I will be using the firewall and floor as well as will give me all the seats mounts along with heater, A/C, steering column, console, hand brake, lower dash, pedals etc. mounting points as well. So I decided now was a good time to straighten the damaged firewall from the sideways impact it had. You can see the gap behind the ruler that has to be removed.


Looking much straighter now and even a bit flatter than the undamaged side! Some more work will be done later on the upper section once removed from the frame rails. Can continue on now to remove the hundreds of spot welds holding the Grands frame to the floor. A lot of work and only drilling through the frame layer and not the floor pressing to reduce the amount of holes that need welding up afterwards.


Well after 400 odd spot welds drilled out, the firewall and floor is finally free from the uni-body frame. I have cut the floor long so I can make any adjustments for cab length later. I cut it just before it steps up under the rear seat area.


Also done a mock up at the lowest I can get the suspension and not hit the underside of the front guard with the upper wishbone at full compression. This also includes lowered coils and still have enough up travel for a comfortable ride. I tested this out by dropping the whole front of the Grand from the crane when still assembled to see how far it compressed. Short video of it here. Tried a few different tyre heights and will go for 32" ones shown or maybe slightly higher. I have cut and pasted some wheels I am thinking of using in 20" as don't want shiny bling wheels on this. But found out I couldn't get any tyres in the height and narrow width I am after so that idea is out for now. Thinking it might be better to go for more of a hotrod feel in some steelies in the 17" which is the smallest rim I can go with the Grands large brakes. The right picture also shows the cabin stretch of 5.5" that I plan to do, or very close to it, also. This is the same proportion the cab is being made wider and gives me much needed interior leg room I need for my 6'3" frame.