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New toy!

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  • New toy!

    1986 Argo Conquest:

  • #2
    Sweet !, the Ultimate ATV
    2001 BULLITT Mustang, # 02058 , of 5582 Built , one of 722 Produced in True Blue. MGW Short Throw Shifter, K & N Filter , Projector Headlights , Smoked LED 3rd Brake Light.


    • #3
      that will be fun
      2016 GT350R
      5.2 Flat plane crank V-8


      • #4
        Great toy, so the tracks just go over the tyres?
        2014 GHIG GT Convertible
        2003 Centennial Limited Edition GT Convertible


        • great white
          great white commented
          Editing a comment
          Yessir, they do.

      • #5
        Im looking at joining the annapolis ground search team after i retire from 413 sqn.

        I can't cover a lot of uneven ground due to my injuries over the years in helo SAR.

        So the argo will fill in for my "boots on the ground" and hopefully add some capability seeing as its amphibious. I've got some plans to build it up to make it a proper SAR rig.

        SAR gets in the blood. Not so easy to just stop cold turkey...
        Ohtobbad likes this.


        • Rich06
          Rich06 commented
          Editing a comment
          Even more reason to commute out our way as we don't have any Argos.

        • great white
          great white commented
          Editing a comment
          Well, when im retired the travel part wont be a problem.

          Problem will be that's a fair way to haul all my kit (ie:$$ on a fixed income, worse now that gas is climbing like a homesick angel!) and my response time to any call out will suck. I'm going to be just on the other side of Kentville, so at least 20 mins to just get to the Hants county line.

          But when you NEED an Argo, nothing else but an Argo will do. They're pretty much a one of a kind type rig with where they can go.

          It's pretty old tech, but not much else out there can carry 6 adults at once over rock, swamp, mud, marsh or swim carrying 4 adults. Chick the Argo trailer on the back and you can carry another 4-6 people or something like 1200-1500 lbs of gear.

          Mine is dead nuts simple too, at least compared to the new ones. Its about as complicated as a stone axe compared to a quad or side x side. About the only thing electronic to go wrong with it is the ignition. Everything else is "steam driven". If it breaks, you can probably fix it with not much more than a gerber and some tree bark! Lol!
          Last edited by great white; 07-Sep-2017, 12:05 AM.

        • Rich06
          Rich06 commented
          Editing a comment
          I rode in one to a search with a driver and a 4 person search team. You'd need 2 side by sides to do the same job and the drive in would be wetter. Our team president wants one so badly it's almost funny

      • #6
        Yep. Down at the cottage i couldnt believe where this little bathtub would go.

        tromped along the shoreline in waste deep water with no troubles. Rocky bottom and sand bottom. I had to keep the tires where they could get at least some grip since they dont swim.

        Then ripped up the road and into nasty wet mud. Barely slowed down. Couple guys on quads were there and covered head to toe in mud. I drove through with a pair of jeans and a tshirt on and didnt get a lick on me.

        Hit some swamp right after, no problem. Came out the other side, still clean and dry.

        Then I romped through some nasty thick bullrushes and some scraggly scruff at least as tall as me. Stuff theres no way you could walk through without cutting a trail as you go. You know, the bramble alder type stuff. It just pushed it all flat and bored a hole right through it all with barely a care.

        And thats when it was still "new to me" and not working right. When I get it tidied up, running right and the tracks on it it's going to be unstoppable.

        Gonna be a fun rig for sure!

        Last edited by great white; 11-Sep-2017, 10:18 PM.


        • #7
          Soooo, if you have followed my other post (my 83 mustang) you know i just cant leave well enough alone.

          what I've done so far:

          ordered half links to fit the tracks better
          ordered 45 watt led headlights.
          Ordered red led tail lights
          ordered 6 arb style green waterproof switches and the bezel to go in the dash
          combination hour meter/maint tracker/tachometer/volt meter/clock in green backlight
          combination voltmeter/usb/12v panel (green backlit)
          brake cooling duct replacement
          locking gas cap (because current one leaks and this was actually more affordable than a regular one)
          aluminum rear floor (bought a 1/8" sheet and will form to fit)

          spool gun for welding the aluminum stuff when the time comes.

          Work done:

          Fixed the brake/steer levers so the work together properly.
          rebuilt the carb.
          reworked the throttle cable which the po had messed up.
          reset the governer to oem spec from whatever the PO had it at (DONT MESS WITH THE ENGINE GOVERNER ON A KOHLER!!!)
          tore the drive clutch off, spun up a new spring spacer on the lathe, put it back together and now the transmission will actually shift without grinding the box. Need to take it apart again and make a half size spacer though as the clutch now needs just a hint too much rpm to engage for my liking (its a cvt/snowmobile clutch). Basically, if you think of it like a normal transmission torque convetor, the stall speed is too high for my taste.
          ripped the po's mess of wiring sins out of the rig.
          the kill wire and charge wires from the engine had several butt connectors and a mix and match of spade connectors. Cut that all out back to clean wire, soldered in new wire with dual wall heatshrink and finished it with a nice waterproof delphi connector.
          tore the auto/manual bilge pump switch apart and rewired it. Then pulled out the automatic bilge pump and rewired it. Put it all back together with delphi connectors.
          Installed new ato covered fuse box, intending to dump the old and corroded glass fuse holders

          to do:

          waiting for more delphi connectors to arrive
          install busbar
          wire in all the aforementioned parts when they get here
          build a new main wiring harness for under hood, built with waterproof delphi connectors.
          order and install new chains.
          pull all 8 axles, inspect nearings and replace grease/water seals.

          once all that is done i can get on to the custom work.....

          ive lost track of how many friends want me to take them for a burn and several others have already hinted around about hunting season coming up (not a chance bros!). Lol!
          Last edited by great white; 11-Sep-2017, 11:06 PM.


          • Ohtobbad
            Ohtobbad commented
            Editing a comment
            We need to change your name to " Tim the tool man taylor"

          • great white
            great white commented
            Editing a comment
            I dont think so tim!

            Maybe wait until i drop an 1100 cc jap 4cyl in there or something.

            Then maybe i'll deserve the name change!


        • #8
          Auugghhhh! My eyes! My eyes! I'm blind! I'm blind!

          Hey, I can see again! But everything looks funny now:
          27 watt led lights. 45 watts total. 3 amp draw total. Pretty good! Powered them up in the dark garage and they actually throw some pretty serious light. Its not going to get out hundreds of feet, but the argo is going to be slow speed driving and tops out at 18-20 mph anyways.

          and the dash layout from left to right: power port panel, tacho/hourmeter, bilge pump panel, choke knob, ign cylinder, brace of 10 "arb style" switches.

          All green backlit.

          Should be pretty cool.

          Last edited by great white; 14-Sep-2017, 08:05 PM.


          • Ohtobbad
            Ohtobbad commented
            Editing a comment
            its looking good, lots of fun for sure.

        • #9
          Mounted in the body and slaved to a temporary battery (waiting for more delphi connectors to arrive):

          The last pic looks like its looking down because it is. I had to hold the phone up over my head. Any lower and the lights are blinding and just wash everything out. Its actually hard to look at them, they actually are that bright!

          I had to square out the body holes, cut the mounting boss off the lights and drill/tap holes in the rear of the housing to attach body mounting brackets (the place for the bolts was there, just not drilled).

          Lights off:

          Lights on:

          In darkness:

          Night pic is a little deceptive because of the tree/bush to the immediate front. The big pines behind it were all lit up, but just doesn't show in the pics.

          Right around 27!watts each and under 3 amps total to run both.

          Pretty good for 26 bucks!

          Edit: supermotors seems determined to post pics side ways no matter what I do! Lol! Its an iphone thing from what i can figure...!

          I also took the drive clutch apart again and spun up a 0.0781 spring spacer on the lathe to replace the 0.156 spacer. Now its just about perfect. No crunch or walking away shifting at idle, tiny bit of flare before drive to get the rpms up for good pull away.


          • #10
            Finished off today by making the template for the rear floor:

            Transferred it over to 1/8 aluminum and i'll cut it out when i get a chance to finish it off.


            • #11
              You are making great progress !


              • #12
                So ive been needing a trailer to haul the Argo. But like most guys, I don't want to spend any more than I have too.

                Problem was; I wanted a trailer big enough to take the Argo with supertracks, which means a minimum of 72" wide. Those size trailers are a little harder to find used and just don't come cheap when you do.

                I've been watching the local buy and sell and there was a beat up looking old home built that was 6'4"x10'6". But it looked like poo and he wanted 400 bucks.

                I thought about looking at it once or twice but it just looked so bad in the pictures I couldn't be bothered.

                As fate would have it, I actually drove by it yesterday when I was headed somewhere. I stopped to have a look just because I was there anyways.

                Well, it still looked like poo. But under the crap appearance it was actually pretty heavily built and in decent shape. There was something I couldn't put my finger on about it, but it was big enough and certainly a good base to build on.

                The for sale sign also had 400 crossed out and 300 written in.

                So I called the guy and we got to talking. Ended up paying 250 bucks. I'd pay more than that for just the steel to build something similar. Tows straight and true. No bounce and the truck doesn't even know it's three.

                I get it home and get a more in depth look at it. It had hydraulic surge brakes on it at one time, but the master cylinder is long gone. That seems strange to me on a home built utility trailer, but I dismiss it as someone used what they had lying around. The tires are new 12" Carlisle's on 5 bolt rims. The frame is thick and the sides are not c channel, but rather look like a box section that isn't a complete box. It takes a 2 inch ball and the A frame is very heavy. 3500 lb axle with surge brakes. Theres some kind of bracket in each corner under the soft and rotting floor. There's strange little posts on the front and rear frame that angle up so they're not tie down points.

                Then it hits me what I'm actually looking at: it's a converted camper trailer and a fairly big one at that. I'm guessing it's an old "Bonair" from about the 70's as the seller told me he bought it off a guy who used it to haul his stuff down from Montreal. Couple things also have "made in Quebec" stamped in them (ie: plastic wheel wells). That's why the welds look so good and it's fairly heavily built; only the registration is "home built", the base trailer frame is production built.. Certainly heavy enough to drag my Argo or a motorcycle or two around. 10'+ will be nice for hauling lumber from the yard as my truck only has a 6.5' bed (biggest I could get on an f150 crew cab).

                So, plans are to strip it down to the frame and blast it clean. Drop tail added and axle flip to make a nice deck over utility trailer. Drop gate at the rear and I'll build platforms over each wheel well for the Argo to sit on. A bit more steel and probably 2x6 pressure treated boards. Two raised platforms will give me some storage on the trailer for some long but low items as well as wheel clearance.

                Plan is to end up with something like this:

                but in a deck over configuration.

                Should be fun. Pics as it develops. Only in to it for 250 right now (and I could use it as is) so that's good!

                Last edited by great white; 08-Oct-2017, 07:54 AM.


                • great white
                  great white commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Oh, my 86 is about 1000-1200 lbs in stock form. So about as much as a golf cart, which is what the PO was using it for.

                  Sales literature says 975 lbs, but thats almost never accurate.

                • Ohtobbad
                  Ohtobbad commented
                  Editing a comment
                  975 is likely dry, as soon as you add fluids and everything else, you are likely right.
                  Surprised me though, I would have thought heavier. That trailer should be perfect for your use.
                  You being handy as you are, you will have it set up for your use in no time.

                • great white
                  great white commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Yeah, theres not a lot to the older ones.

                  Theres only a flat steel frame, a lawn tractor engine and a transmission. The rest is chains and tires.


                  Its not much more than a go cart in a plastic tub.

                  The newer ones have a lot more junk in the trunk. They've got fuel injection, revised transmissions, liquid cooling, bigger rims and tires, longer, taller, etc.They go upwards of about 1800-2000 lbs loaded for bear...
                  Last edited by great white; 08-Oct-2017, 03:25 PM.

              • #13
                Tear down time.

                Its three layers of various thickness of plywood in various stages of decay:

                That pic is the last layer and is the orginal 1970-1980 era plywood. Still has the holes for power and water lines in it. Soft as puddin'! All the previous owners just keep slapping another thin layer of plywood over the previous layers as they went soft. Not the way to do it!

                Once stripped, over all, not in bad shape:

                A little cleaning and some rust paint and it'll be good as new.

                Only bad piece is the very last rail:

                Not a big deal. Cut it out, weld in new. I was going to build a dove tail anyways so its minimal extra work to replace the bad rail.

                Figure I'll raise it about 6 inches to make a clean, flat deckover:

                Dove tail will work nicely with the raise. I'll just make the tail a 3-4" drop. That will still add at least 2" of clearance from what it is now. The ball center comes up just enough to make it a perfect hieght for a standard hitch drop.

                I was thinking an axle flip, but I think I'll just cut the spring mounts off and weld a spacer to the frame member:

                Then weld the spring mounts back on. Seems to be the cleanest way to go and maintains the orginal spring action.

                I may just carry the spacer from front rail to the rear and weld at the cross beams along the way. Good way to add some strength and rigidityto the chassis while accomplishing the lift. Might slide the axle back a couple inches as well to get a bit more tongue weight since its no longer a camper and will be hauling stuff instead.

                I also may end up doubling up the outside rails. Not so much for strength, but so i can add a c channel to take the deck boards. Added strength will just be an incidental bonus.

                Last edited by great white; 08-Oct-2017, 01:02 PM.


                • #14
                  So, further measuring reveals i need a deck height of 22.5" to clear the tires and 3" of suspension movement.

                  I highly doubt it will move 3", but you never know. 3" is the total amount of movement the axle can make before contacting the frame. The camper springs are actually pretty soft, most likely so the dishes and pots in a camper dont get thrown around too much. I'll give them a go and if they are too soft I'll just replace them with something more robust.

                  Plan is to pit two 10' 2x3 metal tubes from the a frame to the rear rail. This will transfer all the load to the pulling frame and stiffen the whole thing up immeasurably.

                  Then a simple 2x2 piece to space the spring mounts down the total 5" i need to raise the deck to the priper height.

                  A 16" dove tail will bring the rear lift up to about 10" and the drop gate will make the rest if the ramp into the bed.

                  10 foot 2x6's will make the deck. That will give me the option of carrying the Argo, or bolting down one or two motorcycle chocks and ferrying my bikes around. Anything else it will handle fine with the 2x6 deck boards.

                  The 12" tires and rims will have to stay or the trailer will just get too high for my liking. Possibly might be able to go up to a 13" if the suspension is stiff enough of if i install some bump stops.


                  • #15
                    Add two lengths of 2x4" tube:

                    And bam! Deckover utility trailer:

                    The new pieces have a little "stand off" from the original spring mount piece because the cross rails they are welded to aren't flush with them. Rather than notch the crossmembers, i just welded the ends of the 2x4 tube to them and accepted the space between the 2x4 and 2x3 pieces. To compensate, i'm going to amke a couple 3x3 plates and weld 2 per side across the gap. Kind of like a "fishplate". There will also be a support welded between the 2x4 tubes to mkae sure it all stay nice and rigidly in place.

                    I moved the axle back to the 60% postion. The orginal camper trailer had the axle dead center of the deck. I figure they had it centered due to the way the camper had the deck loaded with its components, putting the 10% tongue load on the hitch. Utility trailers arent built that way, so i moved the axle back to a convention postion for a utility trailer.

                    The deck will be 2x6 wood. Probably just local spruce. A piece of 1.5" angle will be welded to the top of the frame rails and that will form the channel for the wood to sit in.

                    Beavertail rear piece will follow later down the road. Im just getting it functional for now since we're moving to a new house in march 2018.

                    I'm going to swap the spring with my 12' aluminum boat trailer springs. The camper ones are 3 leaves and the boat springs are 4 leaves. The boat trailer is so stiff it doesnt give at all and the trailer just jumps around. Swapping springs over to the argo trailer just makes sense.

                    Next is to weld on some spring perches as i currently just turned the axle over to do the axle under spring flip.

                    Deck, some cleankng and painting and i can at least move the argo around.

                    Still not in to it for more than 300 bucks!

                    Last edited by great white; 11-Oct-2017, 06:21 PM.


                    • Ohtobbad
                      Ohtobbad commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Looking good and thats cheap, going to be good set up for what you want.