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Restoration of my 1942 Ford GPW Jeep


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Lookin great Zeph! Definitely feeling a little jealous.

In memory of 1LT Julius C. Goldman, XO of F/330th, 83rd Infantry Division 1944-45.

 

Looking for P-47 and Tactical Reconnaissance Unit photographs and any items associated with WWII Jewish fighter pilots.

 

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Some details worth checking...

 

Some early GPW were fitted with Wilson Foundry made engine blocks which are identical to the Willys blocks..

They were fitted with F marked accessories though..

But looking at your engine, I see no engine number boss and the cast numbers don't look anything like MB engines either...

COuld it be an engine from a power plant or such???

Anyway if it runs OK, it will do...

 

And only a limited run of GPW came with Ford marked tires before they shipped the entire tire machinery to the USSR...

Most of the GPW production was fitted with Firestone tires...

 

Cheers,

 

Johan

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Lookin great Zeph! Definitely feeling a little jealous.

Well, you do have a GPW, so you shouldn't feel too jealous. :) :thumbsup:

 

Your project is very interesting to follow...looking good!

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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Some details worth checking...

 

Some early GPW were fitted with Wilson Foundry made engine blocks which are identical to the Willys blocks..

They were fitted with F marked accessories though..

But looking at your engine, I see no engine number boss and the cast numbers don't look anything like MB engines either...

COuld it be an engine from a power plant or such???

Anyway if it runs OK, it will do...

Hi Johan, I am pretty sure this engine is a Willys CJ3A based on the serial number stamped on the pad above the water pump. The PO did have the original GPW engine when it cracked. In rebuilding it, he kept a number of the original GPW parts, but used this Willys replacement block He tossed the original GPW block... :pinch: I do have both a WWII era Willys block and a complete GPW engine that I hope will be able to be rebulit. This engine will get me on my way for a bit while I sort the GPW engine out and verify if it can be rebuilt.

 

And only a limited run of GPW came with Ford marked tires before they shipped the entire tire machinery to the USSR...

Most of the GPW production was fitted with Firestone tires...

 

Cheers,

 

Johan

I haven't fully researched the Ford tires yet, but thought it was awesome that someone would be willing to produce them for such a limited market. My GPW is serial 23515. It's pretty early, but I would like to nail down the history of the Ford tires. I just haven't had time yet. There are some that don't like reproduction Firestone tires I picked up, due to the lugs not having a finer point. The reproduction Firestones are more rounded than the WWII era tires which had the finer point. Be that as it may, the Firestone tires look pretty good and are likely half the price of the proposed script tires. I find the history all very fascinating. Thanks for the observations, I really appreciate your input and insights!

 

Take care, Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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Wow, you sure made some great progress! Ford blocks were weaker than Willys, and prone to cracking so have it checked for other cracks before you rebuild it.

 

I'm almost finished with the (optical) restoration of a GPW block (a specialist did the inside) of a friend. His GPW is running fine on a post-war Willys block, but when he found this block we decided to restore it as close to original as we can and put it in the jeep. It still had lots of original 'F'-marked bits & pieces that we restored and put back. I'll make some pics of it next time I'm going there.

 

I had a lot of help from the 'MVPA Ford GPW Judging Guide', and the color listing on the Jeep Draw-section of G503.com!

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than in a Yugo.

 

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Wow, you sure made some great progress! Ford blocks were weaker than Willys, and prone to cracking so have it checked for other cracks before you rebuild it.

 

I'm almost finished with the (optical) restoration of a GPW block (a specialist did the inside) of a friend. His GPW is running fine on a post-war Willys block, but when he found this block we decided to restore it as close to original as we can and put it in the jeep. It still had lots of original 'F'-marked bits & pieces that we restored and put back. I'll make some pics of it next time I'm going there.

 

I had a lot of help from the 'MVPA Ford GPW Judging Guide', and the color listing on the Jeep Draw-section of G503.com!

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Hi David,

 

Yes, I will make sure that it is rebuildable without cracks before I start on it. It is not dismantled yet. I had heard that the GPW blocks were prone to cracks more so than the Willys blocks. Do you know a specific area where the GPW blocks cracked, or could it be anywhere?

 

Please post some photos of your freind's GPW block that you are working on when you get a chance. I would love to see it in all its original glory.

 

PS: That Jeep Draw section is awesome, isn't it? :thumbsup:

 

Regards,

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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My friend has another GPW block that has a crack between a cylinder and a water channel, and I've heard those were known weak spots in GPW blocks. We haven't found a machineshop that dared the challenge of repairing it yet, so it is laying in a corner now for the time being.

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than in a Yugo.

 

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So close now. This was difficult. I never have anybody to help me, so it was a little tricky

 

I love to watch the progress on your jeep! I wish I lived closer. I would love to help with this project.

I sure don't know anything but I would be a good "go-for" to boss around.

 

....Kat

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My friend has another GPW block that has a crack between a cylinder and a water channel, and I've heard those were known weak spots in GPW blocks. We haven't found a machineshop that dared the challenge of repairing it yet, so it is laying in a corner now for the time being.

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Sounds like it cracks where most other engines crack. :pinch: It is costly and difficult to find the expertise to have these welded. I don't know if there is anyone around here that can do that work either. I'll be checking around.

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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I love to watch the progress on your jeep! I wish I lived closer. I would love to help with this project.

I sure don't know anything but I would be a good "go-for" to boss around.

 

....Kat

I would appreciate the help, Kat! :thumbsup: I try to boss around my Vizsla, Gracie. She likes to hang out and watch the progress, but whenever I drop a wrench or screw driver, I just can't quite get her to retrieve it as much as I try! ;)

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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I would appreciate the help, Kat! :thumbsup: I try to boss around my Vizsla, Gracie. She likes to hang out and watch the progress, but whenever I drop a wrench or screw driver, I just can't quite get her to retrieve it as much as I try! ;)

 

Zeph

 

 

Ah, see that's where my 3 year old comes in handy! My 1 year old tends to grab whatever I drop and run the opposite direction! :D

In memory of 1LT Julius C. Goldman, XO of F/330th, 83rd Infantry Division 1944-45.

 

Looking for P-47 and Tactical Reconnaissance Unit photographs and any items associated with WWII Jewish fighter pilots.

 

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Isn't Coker Tire making the 600-16 Ford Military NDTs anymore????

I don't think so. Tom Wolboldt opined last week on the G503:

 

“Hi Zeph,

 

According to Coker Tire, there are no new Ford tires in the retail system and no plans at this time to make more of the style that was made. You may find some new unmounted Ford tire in private hands somewhere - maybe. If you just wanting a tire with a brand name regardless of it's correctness to the original tire style then the current Firestone will do. If you want correct made Firestone branded tires as to markings and tread pattern then you should wait until the new Coker Firestone gets made in possible late 2012 or early 2013….”

 

Then on July 12, 2012 this was posted on the same thread by another G503 member:

 

“Well I guess I started a good discussion. The Gpw is an 11/43. I talked to Coker. They are planning a run of Ford tires this fall Price is estimated at $206 (thats one, not four!) Hello Firestone.($110 4 ply) Coker offered to haul tires to Davenport Ia motorcycle meet in August, saving $100+ shipping. Thanks to all who responded.”

 

I did a little research last evening and it appears that GPW's could have had Ford marked tires through the end of 1942, but I am still looking for a couple other sources to confirm that this would be the case. Based on which plant a particular GPW was produced, various "branded" tires could have been mounted on the line. I don't think there was any strict mandate. It's like there was a war on or something...

 

More to come... :think:

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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I don't think so. Tom Wolboldt opined last week on the G503:

 

“Hi Zeph,

 

According to Coker Tire, there are no new Ford tires in the retail system and no plans at this time to make more of the style that was made. You may find some new unmounted Ford tire in private hands somewhere - maybe. If you just wanting a tire with a brand name regardless of it's correctness to the original tire style then the current Firestone will do. If you want correct made Firestone branded tires as to markings and tread pattern then you should wait until the new Coker Firestone gets made in possible late 2012 or early 2013….”

 

Then on July 12, 2012 this was posted on the same thread by another G503 member:

 

“Well I guess I started a good discussion. The Gpw is an 11/43. I talked to Coker. They are planning a run of Ford tires this fall Price is estimated at $206 (thats one, not four!) Hello Firestone.($110 4 ply) Coker offered to haul tires to Davenport Ia motorcycle meet in August, saving $100+ shipping. Thanks to all who responded.”

 

I did a little research last evening and it appears that GPW's could have had Ford marked tires through the end of 1942, but I am still looking for a couple other sources to confirm that this would be the case. Based on which plant a particular GPW was produced, various "branded" tires could have been mounted on the line. I don't think there was any strict mandate. It's like there was a war on or something...

 

More to come... :think:

 

Zeph

 

Hello everyone,

five years ago, i put on my Ford GPW Dod 06/1943 the Firestone tires....and i can say that they are fantastic!

 

Regarding the tires marked Ford, I read, years ago, that the "Ford production line" in 1942 was dismantled and moved to Urss with the "Lend & Lease program" for producing the tires for the Willys / ford gave to the Red Army. Well, the line was never installed in Urss and Ford seems to have signed a contract with Firestone.

 

Therefore at the beginning of 1943 is reasonable to think that the Ford GPW were equipped with Firestone tires.

 

Ciao.

Francesco

 

p.s.: sorry for my bad English

"We Are All Americans"

Ford GPW 118589 DoD June 1943


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I've been running a set of the (1990??) first production run Coker Fords on my GPW and they are still going great....

 

But I would fit Firestones on a next resto though...

 

Johan

 

I will likely do the same and go with the Firestones. My resto won't be close to a factory resto, but I do like the look of the Ford script tires..., but to justify the extra cost...hmmmm.... :think: I would really be on the fence if the Ford tires did become available by the time I needed a set of tires, however.

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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Hi David,

Please post some photos of your freind's GPW block that you are working on when you get a chance. I would love to see it in all its original glory.

Regards,

Zeph


Here are some pics of this block I made yesterday; I post them here if you don't mind.

 

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Original parts: block (comes out of a generator), head (NOS), cross-over tube, waterpump, oilpump, oilfilter, bellhousing & inspection plate, carburettor, starter, generator, generator bracket, generator tension bracket, pulley guard, lots of bolts, fuel line (pump to carburettor), distributor.

Willys parts: manifolds, sump, dipstick, carburettor linkage, distribution cover.

Repro/new parts: oilfilter bracket, fuelpump, valve cover, thermostat housing, fuel line (towards pump), fan belt, fan, a few bolts, coil, cranckcase ventilation line.

I'll put the sump on when the block is hoisted from its cart, and when a set of original manifolds is found they'll be added too.

Greetz ;)

David

Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than in a Yugo.

 

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I forgot to add this engine will go in my friend's Ford GPW with framenumber 117404; an original Ford factory document states this specific vehicle was not crated but delivered on wheels on May 20, 1943 and had hoodnumber 20388557.

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comfortable to cry in a Corvette than in a Yugo.

 

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I forgot to add this engine will go in my friend's Ford GPW with framenumber 117404; an original Ford factory document states this specific vehicle was not crated but delivered on wheels on May 20, 1943 and had hoodnumber 20388557.

 

Greetz ;)

 

David

Wow, that's a great looking GPW engine, and your friend is fortunate to have that kind of documentation for his GPW. I wish I had more information on mine. I still can't determine where it was manufactured yet. That would be good to know.

 

Thanks for posting the photos, David.

 

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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I started the little project of installing the two Firestone tires I acquired onto two of the original WWII combat wheels I had. First I had to dismount the tires that were on the wheels :pinch: Wow, that was a battle. I don’t know how long these tires had been on there, but I would say 50 plus years at least.

Here are today's contestants:

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What was interesting is that the first tire I dismounted had the inner tube nicely compressed between the split between the two wheel halves. I bet that the owner often wondered why that tire always has a slow leak:

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Better view of the inner tube post compression:

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The fallout after the battle:

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Here is the second wheel that had the flap installed:

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A bit of sandblasting of the wheels. These were by far my most difficult sandblasting job to date. There was a lot of heavy rust. One wheel half had a rust hole that I welded up. I’m glad I am using reproductions combat wheels for the GPW and these vintage wheels for my ’43 Willy’s MBT trailer:

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A couple of the warning tags that are on each of the wheel halves were still in fairly good condition. Two were totally destroyed by rust:

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Some primmer before the OD:

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This was my first try installing tires on the combat wheel. The tubes went in okay and I used baby powder to install the flap which wasn’t too bad of a job. I have thought about installing the tires on combat wheels for the last ten months. Gee whiz, it was a bit anticlimactic. It took me all of about five minutes to install the tire, tighten the nuts on the bolts and inflate:

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Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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Flap installed and ready for a wheel half:

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First half of wheel:

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Somewhere I had read or heard that if the tire has a “dot” on it, that that dot goes to the inside. I also noticed that the tire had a lot of safety lettering on the inside as well:

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I also am installing all the valve stems at the “F” in Firestone. Just in case I lose track of where they are :think: :

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Success:

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Although the actual mounting of the tires was anticlimactic, I did feel a great sense of accomplishment installing my own tires. :thumbsup:

Zeph

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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The tires look great! The "before and after" pictures are amazing.

 

The next time something takes a really long time, just remember how sad

you were that this task was so quick. :lol:

 

....Kat

Good point! :thumbsup: :lol:

Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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My real job has been cutting into my project time, so very little action as of late. I was able to rearrange my garage and pull my tub out to get a look at it, however. Once I mounted it on the rotisserie, I never touched it. It still has all the gauges and other miscellaneous items bolted to it. I pulled the gauges out and then started removing other items.

The windshield frame latches were a real PITA to get out. I tried to finesse the screws holding them in over a few days, because I didn’t want to strip the heads. I hosed them down with PB Blaster and kept working them, but it just wasn’t meant to be. I then drilled through them and tried to use a screw extractor. No dice, the first two had the heads snap off. I was bummed. Yet, after all of that, I found out that the captive nuts are on a plate that isn’t even welded to the rear of the dash! :pinch: All that work to find out that I could have just ground them off in a couple of minutes. I really need to fire my researcher. :unsure:

After a few days of soaking the latches, I drilled. That drill doctor I received as a Christmas gift a few years ago is worth its weight in gold. Say goodbye to dull drill bits:

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The aftermath. I don’t know if I will be able to save the plates. There may be replacement plates available. I will ask my new researcher to get on that:

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And to add insult to injury, one of the glove box hinge screws started to come out fine and then snapped off! I had to drill it out and tap some new threads. It’s good to go now. There still will be a bit of work on the glove box. It appears Bubba torched a hole in it just above where the hinge screws are. Possibly to keep the rain water out? There are a couple more holes in the back of the box as well. Plus it is really bent up where the hinge goes:

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I looked over the floor panels again. It’s a good thing I have the two replacement panels. There really are few if any hat channels remaining. The interior floor is covered in sheet metal which is hand riveted in place. Plus there are pieces of angle iron welded in the door thresholds. I bet this was done to keep the tub from flexing, as the original thresholds look fine.

Here’s the bottom side of the floor. Someone removed the original sump at no charge:

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One can see the sheet metal flooring addition on the inside from below where there once was a hat channel:

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Another view of the lack of floor structure:

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Here’s an interior view of the angle iron welded in the thresholds:

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Exterior view of the angle iron. It looks like it will be a lot of work to remove these. I don’t know if I will or not at this point. If I do, it would be after I replace the floor panels:

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Last I have the tail panel where Bubba welded a 3/8” plate of steel over the “Ford” script. I don’t know if it is worth all the work to save it, or all the work to replace the entire tail panel with a reproduction panel. I will have to decide which way to go :think: :

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Collecting WWII USAAF Militaria and a Few WWII Vehicles Along the Way


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