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John deere gator bmw f650 thumper swap (pic heavy)

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Posted (edited)

I work as a jd mechanic and got a free gator from our scrap pile at work, Meanwhile i got a free bmw f650 engine.

And so the magic begins




removing rusted floor pans and replacing them with air for weight reduction.


Too much weight reduction


Put the machine in owatrol to stop the rust and found this huge dent.


Patched the rusty panel with some overkill


Removed most of the dent, took a hell of a hammer as most of the metal is pretty strong.

Put bondo on the rest to even it out.


Put the whole thing in primer while i work on it


Made a plate where the old hubs used to be so i can put a 1 inch pillow bearing in.

There is some room to change it out for a bigger axle later on if needed.


Needed some spacers as i could not get an axle long enough and i got the wheels for free already


Ready for.the transplant


And a nice thinned out bundle of wires


First test fit


Mock up of everything


Surgery to get the pipes to fit


Not too bad crappy welding


Hyperspace drive, biggest sprocket i could find without having to get a second mortgage


Starting to look like something again


Filler neck welded shut


This goes here, some further adjustment is still required on the bottom mounts, its basically upside down and the lower studs are now in a grommet thats made in the top frame rail


Coolant reservoir had to be moved up front because its the only place thats higher than the engine


Green coolant hoses from a ds650


Cutting holes always get my nerves going, did not finish the edges untill i know for sure that my edging strip will fit nicely.

Also there will be a scoop over 3/4 of the radiator as it will be partially behind the wheel

And as i cut it part of the metal decided to pop back because of the old dent but its just slight and will be covered by the scoop


Meanwhile in the wiring department i got to mock some stuff up.

Bought a pack of weatherproof connectors and did it the right way, also kept bmw colors for the wires.

Still have to make a bracket for the coils on that tab

Ill probably get one small fan on the radiator running constantly aswell


Had a battery tray lying around from a different project


So most of the wait now is on parts to finish up the coolant system.

Then i got to make a dry sump tank 

Shifter cable i got from work and am still waiting on the handlebar, ordered a 7/8 handlebar with a pro taper clutch lever for the shifting and clutching.

Tires.. iam not even going there yet.

Muffler will be from a willys jeep and is on the way, it has a 1.625 inlet and a 1.5 outlet and i might even get a second smaller muffler in the rear to quiet it down more.

Air intake will be 2 standard donaldson black canister types to create the stock look

Honestly i dont care too much for power as it has about 500% more power than stock so iam just trying to make it look and sound as original as possible and hopefully de-tune it a little.

It  will be an absolute tire-shredder anyway





Edited by Tim86
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Even though its not as busy here ill just keep this going

Made the shifter and clutch assembly out of a handlebar, bimini top hardware and a pro taper clutch.

It will hinge on an 8mm shaft and 2 pillow bearings

Being a tractor mechanic makes you invent things youve never thought of


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Ass end on solid ground for the first time.


And front tire for reference, i should be getting the front hub this week


I whent with wanda turf savers 22x11-10 on the rear and wanda mx fronts in 21x7-10.

Wanted carlisle at489 couldnt get them then wanted maxxis razr's couldnr get them then was offered these 4 for a decent price and said screw it.

I did find out that wanda also sells this mx tire in 20x11-10 so maybe later when i burn the rubber of these rears

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Hose for the filler tank arrived, ill just use it as a fill point so iam venting any overflow to air.


And the overflow will go trough the firewall aswell as boiling water over your feet isnt that pleasant



Forgot to mention that the front hubs came in and shes rollin, didnt make any new pics of that today but i rolled her out front to the shed and cleaned her up a bit.

Good to finally be able to move her out from the rear of the property and roll her back at night again.

Edited by Tim86

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So i had planned to do the oil tank and hoses and mount the ignition coils bit i did get some small stuff done i left out along the way


Cur off the spindle to fit the shorter hubs


Cut the round edges for the radiator hole, about ready to put the scoop on


fitted gas tank back in.


Started fitting the radiator hoses but iam short a couple of pipes that are in the mail.


also test fitted and modified the new seat base and cut the key stock

So now theres only a couple of things to do on the short list:

Radiator scoop.

Oil tank and hoses.

Control cables.

Mounting ignition coils and minor wiring

Replacing some bolts on the wheel bearing plate to aid in allignment.

Aligning engine and welding rear bracket

The long list is a lot longer including some things like new steering rack, steering quicker, steering wheel change and changing the angle and ofcourse making a cover for the rear etc etc.

Edited by Tim86

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Fenders came in so i can finally see how the wheel offset is going to look. Normally the wheels stick out past the fenders but this looks a ton better aswell imho


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4 hours ago, ktmtigger said:

Can't wait to see this run

Its about to run but my problem is that i need a proper worklight lol.

Stuff like fenders and such i do at my work as well so i can put them in blindfolded but the custom oil hoses require me to see things in the daylight

Edited by Tim86

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Hoses20191130_134953.jpg.cd2fe1f1dd25970bd1c5ba6d7ab4201a.jpghoses and connectors20191130_134936.jpg.e0683492cb030318da942b6556a4e86c.jpgconnectors and brackets20191130_134857.jpg.5c099922a84fbe105731b24c225c39c1.jpgbracket and hoses20191130_134843.thumb.jpg.56805ced94537db08de17bd60be445a5.jpglong story: its a never ending cycle of hoses brackets connectors and tedious little work that only get worse the closer you get to starting the engine

Short story: its filled with water and oil and almost all electric work has been done


Oh yes its the cheapest stuff i could find but ill probably let it run for a while and drain the crap out before i put in anything better

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