Reader's Jeeps : Craig Stumph's 1968 Commando
|Craig Stumph's 1968 Commando
Craig on Cliff Hanger - Cat Canyon run in Delta, Utah
|Owner : Craig Stumph
||Equipment and Modifications:|
Vehicle:1968 Jeep Commando (kind of)
Vehicle name: Commando
Location: Delta, Utah
Most recent outing: Helped organize and lead the Notch Peak Rock Rally
on some of Utah's funnest, and least known 4x4 trails, just west of Delta, Utah.
|Craig and son Mike
|Dallas Stumph and Brandon Gillen
watch Craig on Cliff Hanger,
Cat Canyon in Delta, Utah
|Craig made this obstacle now christened Commando Corner
- Motor--Chrysler 440 big block
- Tranny--Chrysler 727 w/ Transgo shift kit
- T-case--Dana 300
- Front Axle--Dana 44, 5.38 gears, ARB locker
- Rear Axle--high pinion Dana 60, 5.38 gears, spool
- Axle Shafts--Moser rear, Warn front
- Brakes--front Scout discs, rear disks home made (Chev/Ford combo)
- Drive Shafts--rear home modified F250, front Gloeco long travel
- Tires--38x15.5x15 Super Swampers
- Wheels--10"x15" steel wheels
- Suspension--Wrangler springs, 2.5" Rancho rear (buggy springs),
4" Skyjacker front in home made SOA with shackle reversal
- Shocks--Rancho 9000s
- Winch--Ramsey REP 8000
- Bumpers--none "because bumpers suck"
- Rocker Skids--home brew, cut bottom of the body off, welded tube back
full roll cage, home built
900 CFM Holley Projection
B&M Mega Shifter
large tranny cooler with fan
large Derale oil pan
custom traction bars f&r, home built
body shortened 16" with 100" wheel base
lots of body trimming to clear the tires and rocks
front Dana 60
Atlas transfer case
Notes from Craig
The Commando is a project that is never done. When I first
started building it I decided that a no holds bared/no compromise vehicle that
could take a beating was needed. It also had to be cheap. I have since discovered
that everything is a compromise & most of the stuff is expensive.
I have used parts that were readily available and cheap in our
area for construction. That is why the drive train is part Scout & discarded
demolition derby parts. The engine, frame, T-case, front axle and tranny were
all purchased for $400. I got the body for $29. The cost since then has soared
to $12,000 in the stage it's at now. But that's not bad for a competitive vehicle
that has run in the ARCA and Warn events.
I have stayed with the all out theme. This means that road
manners don't matter and trail performance is paramount. In spite of that it
still drives OK. I wouldn't drive it to the Rubicon, but I wouldn't be afraid
to go short distances if the Highway Patrol would leave me alone.
The Commando is built to be light weight, as light as you can
get with a 670 lb. 440 big block on board. I have used components that would
hold up to abuse that were readily available and cheap. Everything has been cut
off or raised that could hang up or get damaged. The whole vehicle is custom from
front to rear. I did all of the work in my garage except for cutting down the
reverse rotation Dana 60 rear which was done by Beach Off Road.
Future plans call for an Atlas T-case and Dana 60 front. That's
for when I win the lottery. For now I'm stuck with the Dana 300 & 44. The Vernal
ARCA event wasted 2 front U joints, two hubs, and a stub shaft. I can't believe we
even finished with all that stuff broken.
My favorite trail is Upper Helldorado in Moab. This trail just flat kicks butt!!
The West Desert trails near Delta Utah are my second choice. Cat Canyon 4+,
Chainsaw 4+ and Lizard Canyon 5++ all are really cool and close to home.
Email Craig at:
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