letssleds M-135 Project

letssled

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I have been gathering parts and getting more tin work done. 4 door frames are stripped, air ride cab is sourced and engine is purchased. I have the front fenders and hood mocked up. Ordering my air conditioning, rad and inter-cooler hopefully this week as now I have measurements.

Hit MAJOR delay though which has eaten up a pile of my time.....Turns out ROCKWELL who makes the T1138 Transfer case WON'T sell me parts to repair the one I purchased off Government liquidation website. They will sell me a new one for $7000, but won't sell me the syncro ring and seals to repair the old one. What sense does that make???? Apparently they won't sell military parts to Canada???!!! That is just crazy IMO, they will sell me a brand new one, but no parts??? What happens if I need parts for the new transfer case????? I sent out some emails to oshkosh, big mikes, etc, hopefully they can help.....Anyway, here is what I am at below.

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Pic #1 - 1989 Caterpillar 3306C loaded on the trailer
Pic #2 - My youngest son helping me drill out spot welds on my door frames
Pic #3 - My oldest son helping me centre punch my fingers, I mean spot welds
Pic #4 - First brackets welded on :) !!!!
Pic #5 - First brackets cut off :-(((
Pic #6 - Brackets with proper measurements welded on ;-)
Pic #7 - Fender on and hood mocked in place.

Admittedly there won't be much to show for the next little while. I need to order rad, intercooler, transmission oil cooler and aftercooler for the A/C unit.

What do you all think of this for a suspension:

IMG_2617.jpgIMG_2618.jpg

Airliner full airbag suspension!!. I figure the Cat has a gear driven air pump, might as well use it. Problem is (or so I have been told) is they only make one style of bag. So I would have a a rear end rated for 44,000 pounds! To me, this will be a back jarring ride, even with the air ride cab. Most I plan to carry on my deuce is 2500 pounds, and that is absolutely max. I though one might be able to lower the bag pressures as they have a somewhat narrow ride height range they need to be a adjusted to. But I am still leery about how stiff this will be. Thoughts?

letssled
 
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Section8

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Not sure about Airliner suspensions.
I am quite sure if you Google around you will find more options to source. I am pretty sure you can buy lots of different size air bags for suspension. I believe some medium duty Frieghtliners have used airbags.
I think air bags are a great idea. Not to sure how they would stand up to off roading but if your not rock crawling and only hitting the old forestry road and such I suspect you would be fine.
Keep at it. Its looking super good.
Sigh... (jealousy setting in).
 

rustystud

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The air-bag mounts can be changed out to a different size. There is a ton of air-bags out there. Find the one that meets your requirements and order it and the mounting pads.
 

letssled

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I need a confirmation in regards to my transfer case. I have a T1138-11 case, that is disassembled and "in the shop" and I would like to order my axles. However, I just want to confirm the shaft outputs, (see drawing). Can someone chime in on the Front wheel drive and transfer case input sides? Pretty sure #4 is the input from the tranny and #3 is the output to the front wheel drive, but this is one of those times it is much cheaper to ask first......

View attachment T1138-11 Transfer Case.pdf

Thanks!
 

letssled

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LOL, I saw that previous post on the swap before, but it wasn't crystal clear and I want to make sure I get it right the first time....axles are $$$$
 
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TXFirefighter

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Air bag rear suspension WITH an air ride cab, makes for interesting driving until you get used to it!!!
American LaFrance used to do that on their fire trucks and the things felt like they were going to roll over every-time you took a curve with any kind of speed at all!
You need a very well engineered system with very limited movement of the cab for it to not feel like your riding waves in a boat.
 

letssled

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Air bag rear suspension WITH an air ride cab, makes for interesting driving until you get used to it!!!
American LaFrance used to do that on their fire trucks and the things felt like they were going to roll over every-time you took a curve with any kind of speed at all!
You need a very well engineered system with very limited movement of the cab for it to not feel like your riding waves in a boat.
Thanks for that very good information! The air ride cab system I have has self leveling bars, so hopefully that should alleviate the role issue.
 

m1010plowboy

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I went to a self leveling bar once. I had a good wingman so I made it home ok.

I've also been studying rear ends and the word trunnion keeps popping up. Have you finalized what you're using for suspension?

Started looking at Monster trucks and the 4 link or multi-link set-ups that allow a ton of travel and horsepower. When traversing rough/hilly/ off-road, keeping all the wheels on the ground is logical so that's why a trunnion set-up works so good. The deflection/flex/travel in an air-bag set-up needs to be as good or better. I pulled a lot of tandem gravel trucks and a few tractor trailers out of the mud but they're more designed to haul weight rather than flex off-road.

You're planning on multi-tasking....highway/off-road so combining the best of both worlds will certainly be a challenge. If you're under 7000kg fully loaded you don't exactly need a system that can handle 15,000kg so trading strength for flexibility could be advantageous.

You could fab up 4-link hangers on some 5 ton top loaders/ with air-bags real easy but I keep thinking trunnion. Whatever you choose just keep in mind all the perishable/ maintenance parts we need to find for the next 40 years and choose a supplier that will still be around. Navistar, Kenworth, Peterbuilt, Mercedes, Freightliner.....or Kia come to mind.

If you want a guy to prep any of the body panels for you, the Goat guys are metal magicians and don't use bondo. B-man said tonight...."It's Steel Soldiers not Bondo Soldiers" so keep your northern brothers in mind for any tweaking on the cab/hood/fenders etc. Could help with some time-management solutions!
 

m1010plowboy

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That's what happens when Another Ahab shows me how to copy/paste a picture into photoshop. Took me 10 minutes to copy/paste parts of the truck into the pic. Fixed the roof!

plowshare 2.jpg
 
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Section8

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Lol. Is it bad that I like it a lot?
I would however remove the little side windows.
To eliminate the gas tank being in the middle with out a step to get in I wonder if a guy could tuck the tank up in the middle if the frame rails since the is an abundance of space on a rig like that. Would have to watch for your drive line travel under flex and load but I bet it could be done!
Or if you have the fab skills build in some steps on the tank like Jersyhicks did on his crew cab.
Great job on the roof line Plowboy! !
I must be really computer illiterate! ! It took me a week to make this laughable creation of an idea. Droped chopped and extend a cab.
I bet Letssleds tri cab is gonna be one sick ride!
Never thought about the body roll issue. I think I would go with springs for suspension and have airbag helpers maybe. As Plowboy points out I to have dealt with my share of stuck dump trucks and semi tractors that get stuck on some mildly uneven ground simply because their suspension won't travel enough to get good traction.
I would rather sacrifice some ride comfort for the assurance I will be able to get to my back woods camp site.
Just my two cents.
 

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rustystud

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Lol. Is it bad that I like it a lot?
I would however remove the little side windows.
To eliminate the gas tank being in the middle with out a step to get in I wonder if a guy could tuck the tank up in the middle if the frame rails since the is an abundance of space on a rig like that. Would have to watch for your drive line travel under flex and load but I bet it could be done!
Or if you have the fab skills build in some steps on the tank like Jersyhicks did on his crew cab.
Great job on the roof line Plowboy! !
I must be really computer illiterate! ! It took me a week to make this laughable creation of an idea. Droped chopped and extend a cab.
I bet Letssleds tri cab is gonna be one sick ride!
Never thought about the body roll issue. I think I would go with springs for suspension and have airbag helpers maybe. As Plowboy points out I to have dealt with my share of stuck dump trucks and semi tractors that get stuck on some mildly uneven ground simply because their suspension won't travel enough to get good traction.
I would rather sacrifice some ride comfort for the assurance I will be able to get to my back woods camp site.
Just my two cents.
You won't be able to put the fuel tank on the inside of the frame rail. But you can buy a 50 or even 100 gallon fuel tank with built in steps. Semi-trucks all have them.
 

m1010plowboy

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Did some measurements for the plowshare kids today then decided to check the dataplate because I was sure it had the width on there. Might be hard to see in the pick but they claim the front axle...FA, to the outside of the rubber is 82 1/2''. The rear axle RA is 78". Trying to fit power steering in there so I hope those numbers got you...feelin' groovy.

P7131303.jpg

Using a straight edge along the front rubber on Goat shows the fenders only 1/2" beyond the edge of the tire. Using my high level math skills that should make the fender to fender width, at the centerline of the axle 83 1/2". Quack quack.

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Section8

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You are absolutely correct Plowboy.
Those are the measurements I had when I was trying to figure out how to go about powersteering on my project.
A top frame rail power steering box is the easiest way to go. Just have to replace it with the factory one on the M135/211 and use some universal joints to 're affix the steering column. If you are wanting to keep the stock steering wheel.
I was going to swap for the international 1600 I have do to its already having adjustable column sleeve for length and u joints for angle compensation.
 

letssled

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Well I have my suspension picked out......9" of air ride bliss and I have my roof cross members arched. I used a "light duty" suspension from a 2006 Columbia. Looks to be in very nice shape, but I will be replacing bushing while everything is easy.

Pic #1,2 and 3 - loading up my new suspension.
Pic #4 - all suspension pieces removed from the old frame.
Pic #5 and 6 - building a template so I can re-install everything in the exact location.
Pic #7 my roof cross members completed and ready to install.


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m1010plowboy

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