Features Research Archives

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Stripped Allen Bolts and Smoking Hot Weather

• CATEGORIES: Features

I’m sure you are as shocked as I am that this post is about yours truly working on a jeep! It’s truly a miracle!

This all started because this weekend and into the early part of next week, we will have record hot temperatures, the hottest of which seem to be centered on ol’ little Prosser, Washington! (See the Axios story here) … records are going to fall.

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Because things are supposed to heat up, I wanted to clear room in the shop so we could move a couple more vehicles in there. To do that, I wanted to move the racing jeep underneath Patterson (which would be lifted up on the hoist). But, to drive the racer within the hoist stands, I wanted to remove the wheel spacers to reduce the width.

Sounds simple enough, right? So, I jacked up the rear, pulled one rear tire. That’s when I saw this mess: several of the Allen bolts have been stripped. Ugh. WTF?

 

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I figured I had a minimum of 2 solutions:

  1. I can weld Allen wrenches on each of the stripped bolts, then (hopefully) spin them off.
  2. I can drill out the Allen bolts.

Thankfully, I don’t want the spacers anyway; if they get ruined in the process, so be it.

But, before I started, I figured I would throw my dilemma out to you folks to see if there are any other ideas floating around?

 
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Thanks For the FC-150 Sign!

• CATEGORIES: Features

Joe-in-Mesa was kind enough to donate an FC-150 sign he won a few years ago while attending the FC-Roundup to eWillys HQ. It will have a ‘most excellent’ place of honor in the shop. Thanks Joe!

To keep it safe for the moment, I put it on the fireplace mantle. It is covering a lithograph my great grandfather bought in the UK in 1924.

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In case you are curious, this is how it normally looks. Upon his return from Britain in 1924, my great grandfather Karl Eilers gave it to the Engineer’s Club (this was shortly after the club built their golf course and country club near Roslyn, NY, on Long Island), where Karl was a member. At some point, my grandfather, who was also a member of the club (and President in 1930) was given the lithograph back. Subsequently, the lithograph hung for years at my grandparents house over their fireplace, which was a done floor to ceiling in rock.

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You can just see the edge of it in this mid-1960s Christmas time photo of their house on Hayden Lake. It’s interesting how much lighter the matte looks in this photo. It must just be the light, as I doubt the matte was ever changed.

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Grandfather Eilers on the left. My aunt Martha on the swivel chair. My grandmother Eilers standing. That place looks smaller than my the way my child-self remembers it, lol. 

 
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Jeeps at the Old Barthell Coal Camp and Museum

• CATEGORIES: Features, Museums

Tom in Paris shared these two photos of jeeps he found at the Old Barthell Coal Camp and Museum.

Tom wrote, “The GPW is a 1942, missing some stuff and sitting on M151 wheels. The CJ2A is a 1946 with tool indents, with the shifter on the floor. They were parked at the old Barthell Coal Camp and museum, in Strunk,Ky. Barthell was owned by Stearns Coal and Lumber. The mining operations stopped in 1948.”

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I was able to locate a stock photo that shows the GPW from a different angle:

 
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Jordan’s 1964 Tux Park CJ-5: “The GoGo Gadget Jeep”

• CATEGORIES: Builds, Features

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Jordan offered to share some pics of his uniquely modified CJ-5. It’s a pretty cool jeep with lots of details. It looks like it was a serious jeep for off road exploration. Here’s Jordan’s story:

I call it the GoGo Gadget Jeep. I bought this CJ-5 about 7 years ago in the foothills between Sacramento and Tahoe. The guy I bought it from had not had it very long and had not done much with it. He bought it from the estate of the guy who built it. It probably sat around since the early ’90’s when the guy died or just stopped driving it.

Apparently the original owner did search and rescue work with it in the Sierras. I have taken some stuff off that I did not want, a rack over the rear bumper, 9 horns, a single side band radio, a winch fairlead that folded down (probably built to pull rigs up cliffs), and a few other things.

The wiring is still a mess, but I am driving it around the Estacada, Oregon, area. It came with a brand new in the box full top (white), the bikini top in the pice, a worn out full top, some extra motor parts (Buick 225), a second set of tires that are in some of the pictures-I had to get new rims because I got 5 tires, but 3 rims of one type and 3 of another), and a few other odds and ends.

The extra set of tires are Goodyear Wrangler Mud Grips. I have only found one picture of them online, and no info.

It runs great with about 40,000 miles, overdrive, PTO Winch, turning brakes (those are the tall levers between the seats). The levers between the seats are the turning brakes, then the PTO engagement lever, then the overdrive lever, and then the shifter. The transfer case shift or is down below the dash.

I wish I would have met the guy that built it. It seems he was an aerospace engineer, based on some of the stickers on it. It may be that someone on your site will recognize the jeep. I would love to hear from them if so. I imagine that it was well known when it was running around the Sierras way back when.

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William Edwin Pidgeon’s Jeep Train Illustrations

• CATEGORIES: Artists/Drawings, Features, Old Images • TAGS: .

UPDATE: I thought this was a good post to revisit. I’ve added an obit to the post at the bottom.

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Originally Posted November 18, 2013: Australian Bill Pidgeon (Wikipedia) had a successful career as an illustrator, painter and correspondent from the 1920s through the 1970s. A three-time Archibald Prize winner, one of Bill’s descendants (Peter Pidgeon) has created a wonderful website devoted to Bill’s life. Among the items the site includes are drawings and photos of jeep trains encountered by Bill in the Pacific war-theatre during his trip as a war correspondent for The Australian Women’s Weekly. In his ‘war letters‘ are some detailed observations about daily life in Borneo following it’s release from Japanese control.

One of Bill’s more interesting observations was recorded in Borneo. On August 16th, 1945, he wrote:

From Labuan another four and a half hours of sitting on a barge like a redhot waffle iron will bring you to the area occupied by the 24th Bgde. This is the land of the celebrated jeep train. Steam engines used to haul the train from Weston to Jesselton but on their hurried way out the Nips did their best to incapacitate the locomotives and the RAAF filled the boilers full of holes. So the engineers put iron tyres on the jeeps and shoved them on the rails and hooked the trucks behind.

Here is an example of an illustration and photo published on the site. There are others from an August 4-6, 1945, letter:

1945-08-04-bill-edwin-pidgeon-jeep-train-ill2 1945-08-04-bill-edwin-pidgeon-jeep-train1An additional illustration sketched by Bill that might interest restorers includes a detailed look at designs and colors used to mark one jeep train.

 Obituary from the February 18, 19i81, issue of The Age, out of Melbourne, Australia:

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2021 Southeast Willys Jeep Get Together

• CATEGORIES: Event, Features

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Will Springer let me know that the 2021 Southeast Willys Jeep Get Together will be held Saturday October 2, 2021, at a new location: 125 Underwood Road, Fletcher, NC 28732

Learn more: https://southeastwillysjeepgettogether.com

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1964 Photos at California’s Oceano Beach

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles

These pics came from the September 05, 1964, issue of the Santa Maria Times. They were taken at the Fourth Annual State Jeep Rally at Oceano State Park, near Santa Maria, California. The dune buggy ambulance looks especially unique. I searched Google for more pics of it, but had no luck. The owner, Arnold Teague, was President of a local dune riding club.

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The Jolli Lodge’s CJ-2A in Michigan

• CATEGORIES: Features

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Maury kindly documented this story while on Vacation in Michigan:

My family and I are staying at a beautiful classic lodge on Lake Michigan near Leland, MI. It’s called Jolli Lodge ( https://www.jollilodger.com/ ), and has been run by the same family since 1956. Greg Jolliffe and his wife Lisa currently own and manage the century old lodge.

When Greg’s father bought the Lodge in 1956, a 1947 CJ-2a came with it. A retired mechanic who lives nearby remembers this Jeep coming off the trailer when it was brand new. It was apparently the first four wheel drive vehicle in Leelanau county.

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When Greg (pictured below in the drivers seat) was 12, his dad taught him to drive the Jeep so he could push vehicles up the sloping driveway after they’d get stuck in the snow. He said he got a lot of funny looks, but just told them this was the only way they were going to get un-stuck.

At some point the floor starter button was replaced with a button in the dash. One time, Greg couldn’t get it to turn over, and he hit the steering wheel in disgust – which had the unexpected effect of starting the engine. For quite awhile afterwards, the only method of starting it was to turn the key, press the start button, then hit the steering wheel.

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The engine was rebuilt at some point by a guy who lived nearby and loved to work on it. This Jeep is extremely original in the sense of having had remarkably few, ah, intentional modifications made to it over the years other than the addition of a hydraulic plow. Greg continued to use it for plowing the driveway until about 10 years ago.

As the photos show, this CJ-2a has had a long, hard life of service. However, at 74 years old, it’s still a much-loved and dependable vehicle that starts right up and is driven often.

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1942 Photo of Jeeps Driving Down Sand Dunes

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

This April 25th, 1942, photo appeared in the News-Palladium out of Benton Harbor, Michigan.

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Stainless Steel Parts From Germany

• CATEGORIES: Features, stainless/jewels

Dan from Langkau Automotive in Essen, Germany, contacted me. He’s got a variety of stainless steel parts he’s collected over the years during his wide-ranging travels, some from the Philippines, some NOS parts, and some parts he’s bought and restored. He even has some Jewels parts in their original packaging. He’s selling both parts and whole body kits.

The bodies he has are “made from very solid 2mm pure 304 Stainless Steel. Very high Quality.” He says he can ship world-wide.

If you are interested in any parts, contact him at kontakt @ langkau-automotive.de (remove the spaces around the “@” before emailing him).

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2-Inline Raditors on MB Build

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine, Unusual • TAGS: .

This unusual build appeared in the November 1964 issue of Four Wheeler Magazine. The build has two radiators, built in-line. I figured you all would enjoy this oddity.

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Happy Father’s Day!

• CATEGORIES: Features

Just this one update today. Happy Father’s Day to all you father’s out there! Since all my kids are far from me, I’ll be spending the day working on the shop and maybe even working on the racer a little bit.

Speaking of father (or minister or pastor), yesterday I received my official documents from the Universal Life Church. I now have the rather dubious and dangerous authority to marry people. I’m bonafide!!

My wife’s son will be getting married in August and they asked me to officiate, so now I’m an official officiate. I get to check off another life experience 🙂

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Jesse and Andrea to Retire the Annual FC Roundup

• CATEGORIES: Features

All good things must end and the FC Roundup is no exception. Sadly, Craig announced yesterday that Jesse and Andrea have decided to retire from hosting the Roundup.

The FC Roundup was always a super way (for us) to start the ‘jeep’ year. It was a great reason to head south for warmer environs. Always generous hosts, they always made us feel welcome, as did everyone who attended. Not only did we always have a great time down there, but we also used it as a springboard to travel east, west, north, and south.

So, to the Ybarra’s we say thanks for all your efforts over the years! We wish you the best in the future!

These pics are from 2013 (see many more pics from over the years at the FC Connection):

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1945 “Front Line Newspaper” Video

• CATEGORIES: Features, videos

Major Frank Owen, publisher of SEAC, The 14th Army’s Newspaper,” narrates this video showing how they attempt to distribute a newspaper to the 14th Army. One shot shows a jeep mobbed with soldiers looking for a copy of the paper.

“Title reads: “Front Line Newspaper. Exclusive Commentary by Major Frank Owen, publisher of SEAC. The 14th Army’s Newspaper”.

Burma (Myanmar) and Calcutta, India.

Various shots of soldiers and mules advancing through mud in the jungle of Burma. Various shots of men firing shells. Various M/Ss of British soldiers in jungle seated around fire drinking tea. They look tired and dirty, flies buzz around them.

Various shots of editorial office of the SEAC (South-Eastern Asia Command) newspaper, including C/Us of Owen and Len Jackson, sailor in Royal Navy and editor of the paper. C/U of female typist at work on Remington typewriter. Various C/Us of Photostat copies of overseas edition of News Chronicle, Daily Mirror, Cardiff Times and Belfast Telegraph. C/U of Owen on telephone.

C/U of man looking at photos. Various shots of Indian men casting the moulds for the SEAC newspaper. Various shots of SEAC newspapers coming off printing press. Various shots of Indian men sorting and addressing newspapers.

Various shots aeroplane landing on runway. Various shots of newspapers and mail being unloaded from aeroplane and onto a jeep. The jeep arrives at army camp. There is a big scramble as soldiers clamber onto jeep to get newspapers. C/U of British soldiers looking at cartoon strip ‘Jane’ in paper. M/S of patients receiving newspapers in Burma military hospital. Various shots of newspapers being dropped by parachute to soldiers on front line. Good C/Us of soldiers reading papers.”

 
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1951 Article Introducing the Hy-Rail Wagon

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles

On November 18, 1951, the Times (Shreveport, LA) welcomed the new Hy-Rail Jeep Wagon to the Kansas City Souther-Louisiana and Arkansas railroad. The article provides quite a few details on the vehicle and how it operates.

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As this September 26, 1952, article in the Courier Journal (Louisville, KY) points out, by the autumn of 1952 there were 35 Hy-Rail jeeps operating on 21 railroads throughout the US.

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1952 Article and Photo of Railroad Jeep Truck

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images • TAGS: .

UPDATE: In late September and early October of 1952, the press photo at bottom, along with the caption seen in the newspaper clipping below, appeared in newspapers across the country. However, I could not locate any associated story. There’s no mention of it being a Hy-Rail.

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Originally Posted November 30, 2017: Given the article above, the date of the photo below was either misread as 1953 or was a reprinted photo for 1953. The original photo was taken at least by September of 1952.

“1953 Press Photo L&N Railroad Vintage Jeep Rail & Road Vehicle. You are bidding on an original press photo of L&N Railroad Vintage Jeep Rail & Road Vehicle. Photo measures 8 x 10 inches and is dated 5/4/1953.”

View all the information on eBay

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This same photo of a Hy-Rail also appeared in Mechanix Illustrated, February 1953, p.93.

 
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1957 Article and other Delaware & Hudson Hy-Rail Jeep Trucks

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

UPDATE: This article features the third Delaware & Hudson Hy-Rail Jeep Truck. It appears to be either #152 or #162. The article appeared in the July 30, 1957, issue of the Press and Sun Bulletin out of Binghamton, NY:

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1962 Article On FC-170 as Hy-Rail

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old News Articles • TAGS: .

Here’s an article introducing the rail FC Jeep to the Green Bay, Wisconsin, community. This November 17, 1962, article appeared in the Green Bay Press-Gazette.

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5ft x 7ft Print Introducing the Jeep to Mexico @ Auction

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

UPDATE: This was up for auction last year in 2018 and 2019. Starting price dropped to $1600 with the auction scheduled for Friday, June 18th (Today).

I’m surprised to see no bow holders. Looks like the dash plate in a long, single one, and I see no column shift. I’d say this was a mid 1946 or later photo.

https://www.auctionzip.com/auction-lot/lot_0E841DDA64

Description: Hugo Brehme (German/Mexican, 1882 – 1954). “Willys Jeep”. Super grand mammoth vintage silver gelatin print. c1945. Printed c1945. Photographer credit on verso. Two photographic sheets joined together and mounted. Fair to good condition; some staining and surface scuffs and scratches, most of which can be mitigated or eliminated with conservation. Frame size: 64 x 86 in. (1626 x 2184 mm). Image size: 60 1/2 x 81 1/2 in. (1537 x 2070 mm). A huge photograph, approximaely 5 feet high by 7 feet wide. An advertisement for Willys Jeep in Mexico. The sign next to the Jeep reads “New or old you can always rely on your Willys Jeep [Nuevo o viejo ud. siempre puede confiar en su jeep Willys]”. PLEASE NOTE this photograph is mounted on board and is very heavy”

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1968 CJ-6 w/ Factory(?) Installed Radio on Four Wheeler Network

• CATEGORIES: Features

Maury pointed me to this Four Wheeler article on a stock CJ-6 with some neat options. One of those options was a “factory-installed AM radio option”. It’s not the cleanest factory install, but does the job. Anyone know whether 1) this was a factory install or a dealer install and 2) what years the optional radio was offered?

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2021 Epic Willys Adventure — August 13th-28th

• CATEGORIES: Features

The 2021 Epic Willys Adventure will be hitting the road .. or better put … the Oregon Trail, starting August 13th. Their goal is to follow the Oregon Trail, if I’m not mistaken, from Missouri to Oregon.

Word on the street is that the intrepid crew may seek some refuge near the end of their journey at the new World Headquarters of eWillys for a night. Let’s hope they make it!

More on this adventure as it unfolds. If you are interested in sponsoring the journey, feel free to contact them through the website: https://www.epicwillysadventure.com/about-us

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New (Old) Drill Press

• CATEGORIES: Features

I’ve been spending the last couple weeks stalking Craigslist, trying to find a good price on a drill press. A couple days ago I found a Jet in great condition for $250, but I called to late on that one. After searching some more, I finally found a 16 speed drill press for only $100. So, I drove up to Ellensburg (about an hour and a half north) and picked it up today.

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It turned out the seller was a long time farmer who used to own a machine shop (along with a 3000 acre farm) outside of Hermiston, but he downsized to a hundred acre place in Ellensburg. Because of that, he didn’t need the drill press. He said it worked great, but sometimes one of the chuck teeth would stick when changing drill bits. One thing that made the deal worthwhile to me was that he included the drill press vice and a notcher, two tools that together, when new, are about the value what I paid for the whole package.

Add into that, $50 for a never-used 40″ John Deere Aerator (Piece at $489 and Home Depot) and I’d say I had a good day shopping!

The funny thing about the visit was that the guy had grown up in Prosser (where we now live) and owned several Willys Jeeps (a 1956 CJ-5 was his high school vehicle). Small world.

 
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Joe Brown’s 1944 Book w/ Jeep

• CATEGORIES: Books, Features

UPDATE II: I received this small booklet. There are thirteen pages (with lots of pics) written by Joe Brown and eleven pages about donuts, including a quiz and recipes (as in, you can use donuts in a variety of ways). So, if you want jeeps, don’t buy this booklet; but, if you like donuts, then this might be a winner. Below are a few sample pages …

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UPDATE: Curiously, after I purchased a copy on Amazon, the price went up a dollar.

In early 1944, Actor and Comedian Joe E. Brown published “You Said A Mouthful”, a book about his adventures entertain troops. The cover includes an illustration on the cover of him on a jeep. If interested, here are various copies for sale on eBay.

“A rip roaring; Illustrated; funny story of Joe E. Brown’s adventures in entertaining millions of doughboys all over the world.”

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PHOTO CREDIT: University of South Carolina … https://digital.tcl.sc.edu/digital/collection/jmetz/id/1197

The book was published by the Doughnut Corporation of American and Bond Bread. Thus, this explains why he’s holding a donut. An advertisement for Bond Bread is included on the back of the book:

 
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1944 “Greatest Sky Armada In History” Video

• CATEGORIES: Features, videos

There’s only a brief shot of a jeep, but I found the footage of the gliders compelling.

Various shots of aeroplanes all marked with D-day signs standing in an airfield. A motorcycle and jeep drive up a ramp into the planes. Various shots of the paratroops as they prepare on the ground.

The aeroplanes taxi and take off for Holland, planes include Halifaxes, Stirlings and Albermarles, as well as Horsa gliders and Wacos. Air to air of the planes getting airborne and flying in formation out across the Channel. Ground to air formation of Dakotas passing over Belgian town, people look up at the aircraft. M/S Dakota plane that has crashed into a panzer tank burning in a field.

Aerial shot of the gliders casting free and heading to ground, they land. Various shots of paratroops parachuting to the ground in Holland. Various shots of planes in the fields.

 
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3 Photos of Reagan & Barbara Walters in a CJ-6 on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

These original 8×10 photos were taken, I imagine, during an interview of President Ronald Reagan by Walters.

  1. Close up photo that includes how the cameras are positioned for closeup shots:
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  2. Side shot photo:
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  3. Farther away photo:
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