Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Belleville, Illinois
Thanked 22 Times in 17 Posts
I think they all come from the same source - M.D. Juan Company in the Phillippines. I bought my SS CJ7 body directly from them about four years ago. It was OK, but far from perfect, probably because their dies are set up to stamp carbon steel, which forms and works differently. Also, the individual stampings were not jigged and aligned properly when they welded the assemblies together, so the body mounts weren't exactly in the proper place, the tub isn't quite square and so on. Some of that might also be due to differences in stamping stainless versus carbon steel. I had to make a lot of the little pieces - transmission cover, tailgate cable attachment brackets and latch plates, door latch bolt plates, tabs for the grill support rods, firewall support plate and so on. The glove box extended to the firewall so I had to shorten it to clear the heater. I probably put a hundred hours into that kind of stuff to finish it off.
Jay at Willys Overland says that they take care of all of that, and drill the holes as needed, so that all you have to do is start putting it onto the chassis. I've never seen their work, but have talked with him at length and he sounds sincere, honest and knowledgeable. If I didn't have the resources to do it myself I'd buy a body from him.
In fact, I would have bought from him instead of directly from the factory, but they quoted him a price that was about 30% higher than they quoted me, even though they do business with him regularly. Dealing with the third world is an experience in itself. Handling shipping insurance, customs and inland freight wasn't too bad, even though it was my first international purchase.
If you go to they website in my signature you can see some of the things I had to do.
Last edited by Jim_Lou; 11-02-2007 at 08:34 PM.