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  • New wiper motor?

    I have a '78 Wagoneer Limited with a 401. It sat for a lot of years, and now I'm trying to clean it up and make it my ultimate winter/snow tank. The first question (of what I'm sure will be a million questions) is regarding the wipers. I would like to move the switch from the dash to the steering column. I would also like to have a few more speeds other than just on/off. Any suggestions on how to do this? Also, I would like to put a little more powerful wiper motor in it. When the snow starts to come down hard, the wipers seem to bog down pretty heavy. Any help or suggestions would be welcomed! Love the site guys! I have found more info on here over the last year than I have everywhere else on earth over the last 5 years!

  • #2
    Moving it to the column wont be easy. Any reason why you want to move it? I actually like the dials on the dash.

    You should have a 2 speed motor now. Off, slow, and not as slow. You would need to change out the motor and the switch. I am not sure where you will get a different motor. You would have to try and find one that will mount up, and has the same rotation distance. If you put one on that has to much 'turn', your wipers will end up going across your hood.

    As for it being not powerful enough, I would check all your connections. Especially grounds. Mine have had no issues here even in white out conditions.


    • #3
      To have intermittent wipers using the stock switch location.

      Find a breaking yard that deals with tractors, as in tractor trailer type tractors. You want to find a medium duty Kenworth day cab. Take the motor and the dash switch and wiring connectors. (Ask if it is okay to cut the harness first.) These tractors have intermittent wipers with a dash switch and the intermittent module is mounted on the motor. You would think that the wiper motor in one of theses rigs would be some boat anchor behemoth. But they are no bigger than any other truck wiper motor.

      While you are there. Poke around in some line tractors. These are great places to find all kinds of switches, dash warning lights and buzzers, gauges and interior do dads that are just plain cool. You can use these for anything you want to go on, off, or tell you how warm your transmission is. There are all kinds of styles to suit your tastes as well. Look in the Peterbuilts, Kenworths, or whatevers to find what you like.

      Once you get home with your booty. Here is what you do. Look at the motor and the switch you should find the wiring diagram. If not just poke around the net. I have found wiring diagrams for all manner of vehicles. Or a trip to a nearby truck stop will do the trick. Wire it up on your bench first. You need to find what position the motor is in when off. Match this up to the one that is on your Wagoneer.

      Next you want to match the length of the arm of the Kenworth motor to your Wagoneer motor. If the length of your Jeep arm is 2 inches you want the Kenworth bit to be the same. You may have to,

      A. cut some of the donor arm out of the middle and weld the two ends together.


      B. cut the end off the Kenworth arm and the jeep arm and weld the kenworth end to the jeep end.


      C. If you are lucky! Unbolt the jeep arm and put it on the Kenworth motor.

      Basically, just make the Kenworth arm look like the Jeep arm and hook it up to your Jeep wiper assembly. Then cobble everything onto your Jeep. Same as adapting a Dana 60 onto your rig. I put a Kenworth wiper system into a 66 Chevy truck a couple of years ago and when I got done it looked like it had always been in the truck. Even the Chevy knob fit into the Kenworth switch. (The switch is made by AC/Delco.)

      If you want the wiper on the turn signal stalk. That is a little more work, but the same process.

      Go to breaking yard, find a Jeep or other truck with the bit you want, cobble it into your Jeep. Hell, just take the whole steering column if you need to.


      • #4
        I recently replaced my wiper motor on my J20, thinking it was the cause for my very slow and laboured wipe speed, BUT noooooo. It turned out after replacing the motor with a new one, that the real culprit was a semi-seized wiper pivot. We got it loosened up with vise-grips and lots of penetrating fluid and voila....full speed again. Even the new motor wasn't any better than the old one til we freed up the pivot.
        The pivot is the splined shaft coming through the cowl grille that the wiper arm attaches to (above the grille). The inner shaft was seizing against the outer ring.
        You should be able to find a replacement switch off most AMC products ie Gremlin, Hornet, Jeep of that vintage. Those cars often had the 'intermittent' option which allowed a timed (rheostat) sweep, in addition to the standard two speeds. They used the same wiper control switch on the dash. I live in Canada and have not had an issue with snow since this fix.
        Last edited by dan01ster; 02-25-2012, 06:34 AM.


        • #5
          Wow! Thanks for the great idea's guys! The monster got shelved for a bit due to financial restraints, but the project is back up and running now! Hoping to get her at least on the road by the time the snow flies here!