Features Research Archives

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Ringling Barnum Circus Uses PTO to Build Grandstands

• CATEGORIES: Features, Fire/Police/Industry Vehicles, Old Images, Unusual • TAGS: .

I spotted this 1950 picture on the Buckles Blog, a blog that presents circus history from all over the world.  I with this picture was bigger.  According the blog post, “Here we see a Jeep with a power take-off in the process of raising the sides of each seat wagon. The outer corners were supported with long braces and then the front end of each vehicle would be lowered to form a grand stand.”


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China MS-884 windup Fire Jeep on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Fire/Police/Industry Vehicles, toys

This is located in the Netherlands.

“Herewith we offer you a Very Rare and Hard to find, vintage mid to late `60ties produced Chinese Tin Wind-Up Toy Car, which was made after the famous Willys Jeep of WWII. This version depicts an wonderful, bright colored Fire Chief Support car!. Its an odd and very sought after model. The model is Wind Up operated! It has been tested and it works great! Like if it was made yesterday! The driver has a medium soft vinyl head. The Bell at the back really rings when the car moves! A lovely and cute looking collectible! An awesome addition within any Jeep, Tin Toy, Or vintage Chinese Toy collection!. Be keen on this treasure! The model comes in Top Mint Condition! Very clean, bright and shining, as if it was made yesterday! No wear at all!. The bottom is like new too!.”

View all the information on eBay

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1942 Reader’s Digest “Meet the Jeep”

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Magazine

UPDATE:  Another copy of the book is on eBay

(09/22/2012) This Old Jeep has a digital copy of this magazine article from Reader’s Digest that you can review before buying it.  Below is Page 1 of 3 pages. View all the pages at This Old Jeep.

View all the information on eBay

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Warn Hub and Box on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Parts • TAGS: .

Randy spotted this rare warn hub box.  It needs another hub though. Northstar Willys is auctioning this.

“This auction is for one Warn hub cap with the original case.”

View all the information on eBay

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Montgomery Ward & Sears Catalogs on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Books, Catalogs, Features

Here is a set of old catalogs.

“Montgomery Ward Sears JEEP SCOUT JEEPSTERS Parts Catalogs 1967 1968 1971 1972”

View all the information on eBay

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Hurricane Sandy Takes Out a CJ-5

• CATEGORIES: Features, Last Ride, Unusual

Peter forwarded this casualty of Hurricane Sandy. Ouch! It gives a new meaning to “ran when parked”

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Go-For-Digger Backhoe Brochure on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, CJ5, Features • TAGS: .

I didn’t know go-for-digger made backhoes.





View all the information on eBay

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Tonka Military Jeep w/Box on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

I have this exact jeep (same numbers on the hood), though the box and top are long gone.  My grandmother bought it for me and kept it in the toy closet.  It jeeped the shag carpet of grandma’s house, which explains why mine is in great shape!

“You are bidding on a great Vintage Tonka Jeep, still in the box!! The Jeep appears to be in good shape. The box is in good shape for its age, although someone has written a name on one side of the box. It still has a great presentation side. This is the 10 1/2 inch version”

View all the information on eBay

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Marx Take-apart Jeep on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

I like this one.

“Is listed as USED, but is in REALLY REALLY GOOD, maybe unused, Condition.
Can completely disassemble with the tools and then reassemble.
Is marked MARX.
7″ long.
NO chips, crack, breaks or repairs…”

View all the information on eBay

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Ron the Jeep Man in Sterling, Michigan

• CATEGORIES: Builds, Features, Reader Stories

Brian wrote me tonight to share this story about himself and Ron the Jeep Man. In a follow up email he included a picture of his CJ-5 called the “Mudd shark” (shown below:  Brian is in the driver’s seat). It included a couch in back that was popular with the college ladies, popular at least until it started smelling a bit too much from being outside.

I understand that not everything is for sale, including the FCs, but there is plenty there that is.

Dear Dave,

After reading you site for the better part of two years, I thought I’d send this along for you to post and to give you a bit of a break . My little ‘thank you’ for all your hard work. [editor’s note:  the break is appreciated!]

About a year and a half ago I purchased a 1960 CJ5 out of Champaign, IL. It was an eBay drop-out that no one bid on and I made a private offer that was accepted. I had a buddy at the University of Illinois take a look at it for me and give me a good report back. My CJ had led a pretty charmed life as a farm Jeep that had been well maintained and stored in the barn. A Koenig top and 33,000 miles, it was in very good condition but got parked some time ago when the throw-out bearing froze and started to burn the fingers off the pressure plate. I had, had a 1956 CJ5 all through college 33 years ago and I always thought it would be fun to have another one but not try to kill myself in this one.

Similar to your book, my father and I worked an entire summer to get my first CJ on the road and it was only fitting that he, at age 89 rode shotgun with me from mid-Michigan to Champaign to tow the second one home. I cherish all the time I have spent working with my Dad over the years on various projects, the first CJ being one of the best.

Like many of your readers, I own several other vehicles and have a good group of car buddies who travel from garage to garage in search of free beer and on occasion actually lend not just their mouth but a hand with a project. When I got the CJ home, one of them gave me a piece of paper with a phone number on in and said, ‘If you need anything, this guy’s got it, Ron-The-Jeep-Man 989-654-2922.

I put the piece of paper in my wallet and called him a few months later when I had my list of things I was looking for, the main item being a 15 inch stock steel wheel so I’d have a spare. Ron said he had lots of wheels and that I should come on up and see him. Sterling, Michigan is about 110 miles north of my home and I thought, one of these days I need to run up there and see what this guy has.

Well, today was that day. I had the day off, Momma had gone to visit her mother and Dad and I needed a ride. We were not disappointed.

Ron said he had 60 jeeps on the property, by my count he had more. Missing was anything MB, the only thing close was a tired and rusted out Bantam trailer. What he doesn’t also have is internet. He even asked if I’d spread the word that he was looking to scale back. We’re talking a 40 year collection.

We’ve all met the guy with either sky high prices or the guy that had everything but nothing was for sale or where met on the porch with a 12 gauge. Ron is none of these. He (by my best guess) has come to the recent decision that he will never get to everything and he needs to start selling and use the funds to finish a couple of projects and actually drive one of them. From what I could see, nothing had been seriously touched in about 8 years based on the dirt and dust and abandoned projects here and there.

Organization and cleanliness are not his strong suit. Most of the time we had to climb over stuff in the buildings and walk sideways to get between vehicles but he was happy to show and share everything he had and he talked my ear off. I don’t think he gets many visitors where he is out in the sticks.

His main focus seems to be on 1940/50/60’s wagons, panels and pick-ups. By my guess, 40 total, most complete, about 3 or 4 running, mostly 4×4 wagons. At this point I kicked myself for not bringing a camera. Heck I was there for a wheel.

His next niche is the Tornado engine. Ron had at least 20, many of the above vehicles were so equipped. It became evident he really had a soft spot for that engine and knew all the fixes to correct the oil leak and oil consumption problems that plagued this engine when introduced.

Several CJ2As in pretty good shape. One an early job with column shift.

A CJ3B with a plow. This appears to be only one of a couple vehicles that actually gets out and gets used. Think he needs to keep this one to keep his long drive cleared.

A couple of CJ5s in rough shape.

Two fire trucks. One, a pick-up that looked like a Howe unit but was made by Valley Fire Truck of Bay City, Michigan. I found a picture of it on line if you search for a 1959 Valley Fire Jeep. The second, an FC dually with and aerial extension ladder used by the City of New York to get down narrow alleys. This was the only FC.

A 1950 Trench-a-Jeep. Missing the trencher but otherwise complete including the agri-weight on the front bumper and all the hard to find controls and PTO stuff.

1960’s Power Wagons. The styled modern square ones, not the WWII style. One with a factory special ordered 440 big block.

Wheels. By my guess, 100+. 15 and 16 inch. Most with petrified tires still on them. Didn’t see any MB take-aparts. My nice wheel ran me $20.

Parts. Piles of front and rear axles and related chassis parts that he had parted out years ago. I saw every brand of locking hubs including some of the rare early ones you don’t see.

A mine field of brake drums strewn across a wooded lot.
Snow plow hardware.

Stuff. Piles of it. Crammed in many of the vehicles. He knew what he had and where it all was. 40 years worth.

As I mentioned, Ron does not have internet but he does answer his phone. Tell him Brian sent you (I know he has a nice set of hubcaps for my CJ somewhere with my name on them!). Bring cash, tools and wear your hunting boots. I did, and when you find a brake drum with your toe under six inches of leaves you’ll be glad you did. Someone with a good digital camera needs to get there.

– Brian

Here is Ron’s contact information:  Ron Hattner 175 Bishop Rd, Sterling, Michigan 989-654-2922

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The Scheneker BackHoe: Anyone Familiar with it?

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Willys Trucks • TAGS: .

Glenn has a friend working on a restoration of a Scheneker Backhoe.  Due to the lack of information about these, he wondered if anyone out there in Willysland had any additional information about them.  You can either comment or contact me if you want to email me (d@ewillys.com).

He writes, “A local friend is working on a ’55 Willys Pickup with a Schnecker Iron Works BackHoe mounted on back. It looks just like the one in the Willys Special Equipment Catalog. We have been playing with this unit for several years and have never seen another.

We would like to communicate with anyone knowledgeable about these. Probably not many were built as it was not strong enough to take the beating.

As this is being dismantled, it is obvious that much rewelding was required after each use. Complete replacement of the frame is the only answer and a California pickup is here. Frame reinforcements were everywhere and we are trying to find any information as to what was done at the Buffalo Factory.

Somewhere there must be another of these in order for owners to compare notes. This is totally different from the Ottawa on the FC170 later in the 50’s, and also different from the half cab FC170 shown in the current AACA Club Magazine “Antique Automobile” There are many special parts on this vehicle including heavy duty split rim 15″ wheels and a banjo type rear end housing.”

Here are the few brochures found so far:

Continue reading

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1950 Wagon 4×4 63 Brochure on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Artists/Drawings, Features

This is kind of a hokey brochure. It is 16 pages.

“original Dealer’s Non Color Catalog , 8.5 x 11 , 16 Pages , “New 4 X 4-63 Station Wagon”

View all the information on eBay

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Koenig Iron Works Bumper Brochure on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features

This is a handy one for keeping track of different truck bumpers. It is one page with two printed sides.

View all the information on eBay

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M38a1 vs The Mighty Mite

• CATEGORIES: Features, M-38A1, Magazine, Mighty Mites • TAGS: .

Here are two different stories from two issues of Popular Mechanics comparing the size of a M-38A1 to the Mighty Mite.

1. Popular Mechanics May 1953 on Google Books | Purchase a copy of the magazine on eBay

2. Popular Mechanics March 1954 Page 140 on Google Books | Purchase a copy of the magazine on eBay

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The Jeep Wheel Book on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Books, Features

Here a book for budding capitalistic kids.

“The Jeep Wheel Book, Published by Samuel Lowe Company. No date but early 1950s.

Neat little book has movable wheels attached to front cover. This copy of the scarcest title in this series, is in near fine condition. There is a bit of light rubbing near the tops of front and rear. Pages are clean and very tight. No names or other markings. It shows some of the uses a jeep can be put to.

Overall condition is Near Fine”

View all the information on eBay

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Wooden Model Flattie by Military Mohagany on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Artists/Drawings, Features, Models

Here’s a wooden jeep from Military Mohagany.

” This handcrafted mahogany wood model is an extremely beautiful replica of a World War II Willys jeep with machine gun. Weapon is optional and can be easily removed if desired, it also rotates 360 degrees. Model has an extremely detailed interior with gauges, foot and brake pedal and steering wheel that rotates.

This is not some cheap wood toy, each model takes an average of 18 hrs to complete and is coated with 3 coats of polyurethane for a super high gloss finish. You will not find a better more detailed model than this.

Don’t see what your looking for, feel free to email as I have over 150 different models in stock and please be sure to take a look at the other mahogany models I have listed. All my models are new in box opened only to inspect for any possible damage before shipping.

10″ Length
5″ Width
5.5″ Height”

View all the information on eBay

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Custom Flattie Honda Mower Bridgeton, NJ **SOLD**

• CATEGORIES: Features, Unusual • TAGS: .

UPDATE: **SOLD** Was on eBay.

I don’t know if this seller has made others or if this is a one-off custom piece.

“Built from the ground up.  All steel components to include the drive train and axles.  Durable 3/4″ plywood body finished with automotive paint.  Honda GZ series gas engine (200cc) for great performance and efficiency.  Rechargeable AGM battery for the headlights.  Padded leather bench seat with automotive carpeting on interior surfaces and the under carriage finished with undercoating. ”

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Zamboni Ice Resurfacer Livermore, CA eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Unusual • TAGS: .

This Zambonia Ice Resurfacer is old enough to be built on a jeep frame.

“We have a used Zamboni that needs a new home.  In good used  condition,  4wd jeep frame with 1600 VW engine.    Located in Livermore CA….  may trade for WWII Stuff.”

View all the information on eBay

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Kevin’s FC-170 Chopping Wood

• CATEGORIES: Features, videos

Kevin’s wrote me the other day to tell me about some of his videos.  He’s got a variety of PTO related videos, including one of his FC operating this neat wood splitter. Just don’t get your hands caught in it!  You can see a listing of all Kevin’s videos here.

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FC-150 Fire Department Truck from Austria

• CATEGORIES: FC150-FC170-M677, Features

Craig just posted a good article about a FC-150 Fire Truck an Austrian owner shared with him.


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Wooden Toy Jeep Happy Land Brand **SOLD**

• CATEGORIES: Features, toys

UPDATE: **SOLD** Was on eBay.

Anyone seen one of these toys in person?

“This toy is in excellent condition. It comes with all parts for the Jeep as well as extra parts for all other builds available. All parts are in great condition including the wrench. Take it apart and build something else! Looks like a wooden erector set!

This item is only the wooden pieces. No box is included. No instructions are included. It will be shipped in the form of the Jeep pictured with the extra wooden pieces. If buyer wood like I can dismantle the toy and ship in pieces.”

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Jeep to Harney Peak in the Black Hills of South Dakota

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Postcards • TAGS: , , .

From the 1950s until 1968 visitors to the Black Hills of South Dakota could purchase tickets for a ride in a jeep to Harney Peak.  The ride would take visitors up to the CCC built lookout at the top of the peak, the tallest point in the United States east of the Rockies (visitors could also hike or ascend via horseback).  You can view various pictures of and from the lookout here. Erosion due to the jeep trail ended the trips by jeep.  The area around the peak was also turned into a wilderness area (and one could argue given the road how that might happen, but that’s another a debate for another time), so no vehicles are allowed anymore.

Black Hills National Forest: Harney Peak and the Historic Fire … – Page 51

This picture was taken at Sylvan Lake. They employed both flatties and CJ-5s. Custer State Park – Page 104

Gerald sent these digital versions of this postcard to me a couple years ago.  You can also buy it here.

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Line of Jeeps in WWII Photo on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images

This is part of a collection of photos, but none of the other photos have jeeps.


View all the information on eBay

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Handmade Flatfender Tin Sign on eBay

• CATEGORIES: Artists/Drawings, Features

Anyone know anything about these?

“These signs are hand made. Each sign is made one at a time on recycled or scrap metal so that, no two signs are exactly the same.

The metal may be scratched, dented, bent or intentionally distressed to make the sign look old. They are made on 24 gauge steel and then the enamel paint is baked, and clear coated. 17 X10.”

View all the information on eBay

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Photo of Truck Powering a PTO Saw

• CATEGORIES: Features, Magazine • TAGS: .

The September 1947 issue of Popular Science has this cool picture of a truck powering a saw.

Popular Science – Sep 1947 – Page 111