Features Research Archives

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Mobile Orientation Unit — Fritz Kaeser

• CATEGORIES: Features, War Images This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Originally published in January of 2010″

In the two photos below, photographer Fritz Kaeser captured this Mobile Orientation Unit presentation on June 28, 1945, near Cividale, Italy (at least that’s the assumption as Cividale is scribbled on the back).  I did a search on “Mobile Orientation Units”, but didn’t have any success learning more about them.  Fritz ran a studio in Wisconsin before World War II and then headed to the Western U.S. after the war, photographing the American Southwest and the Rocky Mountains.  These photographs are a part of Denver Library’s Western History Collection.

This photo shows the Tenth Mountain Division Information and Education’s Mobile Orientation Unit’s jeep-top stage parked in the middle of a grassy field during a discussion of the Pacific campaign. Pfc. Bob Wright (left) and Sergeant Ed Curry sit at tables atop the stage. Behind them is a banner with a map of Japan and the slogan: One war, one world. A jeep trailer contains a sound system and two loudspeakers, a third loud speaker is on the other side of the stage.  http://photoswest.org/cgi-bin/imager?00200148+TMD-148

In the photo below, the Tenth Mountain Division Information and Education’s Mobile Orientation Unit holds a discussion of the Pacific campaign and invasion of Japan with soldiers from the 10th Mountain Division’s Quartermaster Battalion. T/4 Theodore “Ted” Lockwood uses a portable microphone amid the audience. http://photoswest.org/cgi-bin/imager?00200149+TMD-149

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Buttercup’s ‘New’ Brother

• CATEGORIES: Features, Reader Stories This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

A few months ago William shared the story of Buttercup.  Well, he now reports that he found Buttercup a new brother.  He also reports, definitively, that a CJ-2A will fit into the back of a Toyota Tundra.  I think Toyota ought to add that to their tv commercials.

Here is the proof:

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Some Scam Ads out of New Mexico

• CATEGORIES: Features • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Recently, Mike wrote to me about several Willys related ads that appear to be scams out of New Mexico.  The ads aren’t all the same, but are similar. Mike identified these common themes:

  1. No phone number
  2. No pictures
  3. Rush to sell
  4. Low affordable pricing
  5. Rural location outside of ABQ..
  6. Does not respond to local contact attempts.

Here are some links that you might find useful; my goal is to put together a more comprehensive collection of scams that are automobile focused.

From Fraud Guides: http://www.fraudguides.com/internet-craigslist-scams.asp

Craigslist/eBay Car Scam: http://www.simplysoldstore.com/wordpress/index.php/2009/04/19/the-craigslist-ebay-car-scam/comment-page-6/

From Craigslist: http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams

eBay Scams: http://reviews.ebay.com/Scam-Warning-Craigslist-AutoTrader-eBay-Motors-Scams_W0QQugidZ10000000011673463


Here is an example of a Craigslist Ad we believe is fake.  If I am incorrect about this ad being dishonest, PLEASE contact me.

1945 X Army Willys jeep – $750 (Sandia Park N.M.)

Date: 2010-12-17, 12:54PM MST
Reply to: sale-gxgnd-2118017716@craigslist.org [Errors when replying to ads?]

1945 ex army jeep runs good , 4 cylinder engine original threw out, but needs some body work done , not serious some surface rust under the frame and also on top of the front fenders. I used this jeep to get around in the winter time for many years , very dependable old jeep, you can always get your money out of it if you decide to sell later, with more work to be done on it. This jeep will not drive very fast but it sure can climb up trails and mountains, and just in time for the snow here in new mexico, took it hunting deer many year ago, I went out early this morning this place was covered in snow I keep my jeep under my old shed , and it started right up with no problems, it has the 4×4 still working on it, I no longer going to need it because I am moving to t or c where it is a little more warmer, and I am getting somewhat older 78 years young cannot deal with this colder weather so email me to come see , first to come by with cash gets the jeep, please no trades or low offers , I will sell this jeep for my price I will have a better chance if it even snows more,. I just saw one on e ebay sell for much more than this, and the jeep was not even running. The jeep is sold as is no refunds , you buy it it is yours.

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Anyone Recognize this 1962 6×6?

• CATEGORIES: Features, Unusual • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Rudolf emailed me from Bali yesterday. He’d spotted this Jeep advertised for sale as a 1962 6×6 Willys Jeep.  He wondered if this was a custom project or the real deal.  My guess was that this is a one-off custom project, especially since it has a number of civilian elements. Apparently, the seller swears this was in the war (which war?).  Unfortunately, the seller has yet to respond to additional questions.  Also, below is the only pic provided.

Note the unusual front hubs.  I’ve never seen a 6×6 quite like this.  Is this possibly some oddball created by a Willys licensed manufacturer?

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Willys Automobile Line Ad in Life Magazine

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features, Magazine • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

From September 29, 1952, comes this Ad from Life Magazine, pages 40 and 41, titled “A World Famous Family … Each a Leader in its Field“.

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Popular Science Post War Willys Article

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Old News Articles This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Ok, ignore the “no update” post below.  I do have one update.  I found this article from Popular Science, August 1945, as part of my search (mentioned below).

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Sgt. Richard A. Penry, Congressional Medal of Honor Memorial Military Museum

• CATEGORIES: Features, MB, Museums This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Located in Petaluma, California, The Richard Penry Medal of Honor Memorial Military Museum appears to have two Willys.  One is well restored (though I have a question) and the Second one is part of a diorama and tipped on its side.

Here’s the first, a Slat Grille MB.  These images are from Wikipedia.  My question is … isn’t that front cross member from a GPW and not a MB? Or am I missing something?

The back of this MB:

Here’s the tipped over Willys.  I couldn’t find a better pic of this.

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Unusual Jeepney-Coke Item

• CATEGORIES: Advertising & Brochures, Features This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Blaine spotted this unusual item. This appears to be some kind of 100 year celebration of the Philipines. How the Coke/Jeepney tribute add to this celebration is unclear to me.

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Some Interesting Getty Images

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

I happened upon some Getty Images, so thought I’d do a search on Getty’s website.  They have some cool images, though a variety I have seen in other places.  Note that some of the descriptions and/or dates aren’t quite right.  For example, the “date created” for the Willys MA image below is Jan 1, 1941.  However, the Willys MA wasn’t delivered until April of 1941.

Click here to see all the Getty Images with the Search Term of “Willys”

1.  This is a Willys MA

Getty Image #50470924 — Two soldiers sitting in Willys jeep parked on grass, fr. take on state the army just before US joined WWII, w. hangar-type bldgs. in bkgrd. (no caps). (Photo by Robert Yarnall Richie//Time Life Pictures/Getty Images).

2. Here’s another Willys MA

Getty Image #104406783 — FRANCE – SEPTEMBER 16: The jeep WILLYS can help the fisherman because it is semi-amphibious. Picture taken on September 16th, 1945. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

3. Here are snow skiers in  France

Getty Image #104422238 — UNSPECIFIED – JANUARY 01: Patrol Of Skiers With A Jeep Willys Circa 1940 (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

4. This is a color image from the D-day Preperations in England.

Getty Image #106893455 — High angle view of American troops and Ford GPWs (light utility vehicles very similar to Willys MB, both of which are commonly refered to as jeeps) aboard an unidentified landing craft, England, early June, 1944. The vessel is loaded as part of the preparations for invasion of France, the Normandy Landings, which began on June 6, 1944. (Photo by PhotoQuest/Getty Images)

5. A Rare Farm Jeep Photo (note the hood and windshield are inscribed with Jeep rather than Willys).  This original photo is of the CJ-2 X26, identified by Fred Coldwell on page 165 of his book PreProduction Civilian Jeeps. He notes that for advertising purposes, a 2nd version of this photo was created, with the grille of the CJ-2 airbrushed to look like a standard CJ-2A grille (the mb grille and brush guard are wiped away).

Getty Image #104422239 — UNSPECIFIED – DECEMBER 16: The Jeep Willys Has Been Constructed For Works In The Usa In 1945. (Photo by Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone via Getty Images)

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Santa Stole My Jeep

• CATEGORIES: Features This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Perhaps some of you have heard of this album, or at least the song, but it is new to me.  It seems appropriate for the season!

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Gerald Cheers Me Up

• CATEGORIES: Features This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

I wanted to thank everyone for the kind notes that wandered my direction in my hours of need.  Fortunately, I was not so ill that I feared for my life; no, it was just a cold that I hoped I could sleep away (and am better today).  None-the-less, Gerald took it upon himself to search the internet for a few pics that might cheer me up.  Without going into his slightly twisted approach to this task, I will share the below pic.

I must say, I will never be well enough to lick chocolate off of a Jeep.  Never ….  hmmm …  unless it is 60% Belgian Dark Chocolate.  Only then will I even consider it.

I don’t know the history of the “lick off”, but I haven’t seen that much tongue action in years.

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Winter Has Arrived …

• CATEGORIES: Features, Reader Stories This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Roberto got a change to take Altona out and play in the snow in Spain.  I too got out and drove in the snow in Biscuit, but I don’t have a top … it was really cold!  In fact, at one point a truck drove by me at about 40mph and launched slushy snow/water onto the hood, into the windshield and over the windshield into my lap!  Fortunately, I had my snow bibs on and was dressed warm, so no damaged done …

Here’s some pics from Roberto:

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A Few Forest Ranger Images

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Brendan, from the This Old Jeep, found some great old images and history from the New York Conservation Department. Check out the ‘bumper card’ mod!  Anyone know anything about this particular mod?

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Jim’s 1947 CJ-2A

• CATEGORIES: Builds, CJ-2A, Features • TAGS: , This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Jim recently purchased this nice looking CJ-2A.

He writes, “Here are a few pictures of my 1947 Willys CJ2A. It has had a ground up restoration several years ago. I bought it out of Kansas and now it is in the California Sierra Nevada Mountains where I use it at our cabin.

The Willys has a new tub body but original hood and tail gate. It has all the original plaques and auto numbers. All other parts reflect the period except a roll bar and a steering stabilizer. The engine runs like a sewing machine.

I am still working on it to make it better and original. The paint job also reflects the year. If I could find a restored flat fender with the original body and in this good of shape I might jump ship. Meanwhile I enjoy driving this vehicle where everything works like it did 63 years ago, which by the way is my age!”

Congrats Jim.  It looks like fun 🙂

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More From the Canadian National Archives

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

A few weeks ago I stumbled upon the National Archives of Canada the other day, discovering a variety of WWII Jeep images related to Canadian forces.

1. Lance-Corporal Bill Weston (left in jeep) receives a message from despatch rider Sapper Arnot Walter, both men with the 6th Field Company, Royal Canadian Engineers (R.C.E.), France, 2 July 1944.

2. Troopers of the Three Rivers Regiment in a jeep, England, 22 July 1942.

3. Personnel of the Loyal Edmonton Regiment filling a jeep with gasoline, San Lorenzo in Monte, Italy, ca. 22 September 1944.

4. Private Maurice Richard (right), Canadian Provost Corps, talking with students of the Khaki University of Canada, who ride in a jeep driven by Lance-Bombardier R.S. Hughes, Leavesden, England, 15 April 1946.

5. Personnel of the 17th Duke of York’s Royal Canadian Hussars transferring from a “Seep” (waterized jeep) vehicle to the Chevrolet C15A truck which serves as the unit’s bus, Weener, Germany, 13 February 1946.

View more from the Canadian Archives here

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Men & Women on the Assembly Line

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images, Women & Jeeps This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Here are some more pics from the same source as yesterday’s pics (crated Jeeps and Seeps).  These all show the assembly of jeeps at different stages in the process. Note this first image is backwards (the transfercases are all extending to the left rather than the right, unlike the second image).

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Crated Jeeps

• CATEGORIES: Features, Old Images This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Gerald found an old email with some great links. Here are a few of some crated Willys.  I don’t have any background or ownership information on them.

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Happy Thanksgiving!

• CATEGORIES: Features, Willys Trucks This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

I’d hoped to develop some sort of Thanksgiving themed post to celebrate Thanksgiving, but as it turns out there really aren’t many images of jeeps dressed as turkeys … go figure.

Instead, I happened upon this NY Times story of a guy named Harry Allen and his dad’s truck.  To get right to the point, Harry restored it ($40k) and it’s a beautiful restoration.  There’s also a slide show that accompanies the story.

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Andy’s 1947 CJ-2A Airport Jeep

• CATEGORIES: CJ-2A, Features, Fire/Police/Industry Vehicles, Unusual • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

A reader named Andy contacted me the other day about a flatfender that he purchased.  He was told it was a former airport Jeep. Anyone recognize some of these mods?  How about them rims!

Andy writes, “No data tags inside the body, but need to check the firewall tomorrow. The guy I bought the jeep from says that he saw another one with the same wheels on it at the hunting camp where he got this jeep …. There is some use of aluminum in this body, goes hand in hand with the airport shop mod theory …. It appears that the patches in the floors and sides were not really needed at the time they were done.. the body was still very sound in those areas. Looking in the wheel wells, you can see the original not rusted body covered by a layer of metal from the top. I think you may be right on the combination of manuf. top with some airport shop ‘extras’. Those doors sure are unique, I have not seen such before ..”

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Flatfender Tow Truck

• CATEGORIES: CJ-2A, CJ-3A, Features, Fire/Police/Industry Vehicles This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

I found this image on the web at a fake webpage (on of those pages that aggregates a bunch of misc stuff in hopes of getting click throughs).  It looks like a pretty cool build.  Anyone ever seen it or know any history?

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Another Walmart Vehicle

• CATEGORIES: Features, Unusual This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

After seeing yesterday’s post,  Mitch forwarded this image a fried of his spotted at Walmart.

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Paul is back in the Garage — Year 25 …

• CATEGORIES: Builds, Features, Reader Stories • TAGS: This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

passenger_sideWith winter descending on Alaska, the time has come for Paul to direct his focus back on his beloved, shiny, stainless steel M-38.  One exciting difference between this year and the previous 24 years is that he is almost done — But no pressure Paul! Click on the pic to see the original post and followups.

Last spring, Paul reported that after some investigation, he discovered a M-151 radiator would fit perfectly into his engine compartment.  Recently, he took over an auto parts store (ok, maybe just a hose booklet in the store) to figure out a hose solution.  With that problem solved (it took 2 different hoses and a tube to link them), he now must figure out a fan solution.

With that background, take it away Paul …..

The Fan and Shroud

Paul writes, “After talking with the folks at Spal concerning their electric fans I ordered a 13 inch puller fan with straight blades along with a fan relay/installation kit.  The crazy part about this deal is when the Spal people wouldn’t sell me a fan over the phone, I would have to hang up and order on the internet and best of all I would pay over $50 dollars more for the fan and temp sensor/wiring kit than a Spal dealer in California was charging for the exact same items.  For some unknown reason The Fan Man (California dealer) sells lots of these fans at quite a discount and these are brand new fans.  No factory seconds, returns, or rebuilt units.

Anyway, the fan arrived last night undamaged and it looks great.  Thank you Fan Man!  The total fan thickness is slightly under two and a half inches and I have a little over three inches between the aft side of the radiator and the waterpump shaft.  Sweet!

The shroud on the M151 radiator has a 16 inch diameter circle for the fan so I bought a ten dollar piece of thin sheet steel, cut out a 16 inch diameter circle and tack welded this piece to the shroud.  After finishing with the tack welds I rough cut a 12 inch diameter slightly offset circle to allow for the correct placement of the new fan.  I didn’t have a compass large enough to layout a 12 inch diameter circle so I used a stir stick for paint and drilled a pivot hole in one end and another hole 6 inches away and large enough to hold the tip of a sharpie marker.  It worked slick.  Tomorrow I’ll finish welding the insert to the shroud, clean up the welds and trim the inner circle for a more precise fit to the fan assembly before I attach the fan to the shroud.

Things are looking good.  I really didn’t need the relay kit since I’d wired in a fan relay in the electrical box behind the passenger seat but it was cheaper to get the kit with the temp sensor and I could doublecheck the Willys wiring against the Spal wiring so I could identify any potential problems before mean old Mr. Electricity messes something up.

The Fuel Line

Today I received a 25 foot coil of copper/nickel 5/16th fuel line along with the needed fittings to attach the fuel line to the carb.  This is the same tubing I used on the brake and clutch systems (just a different size) and it’s a pleasure to work with.  The 3/16th tubing is flexible enough to be bent back to back 180 degree bends (with a one inch bend diameter so the tube now looks like the letter S) with no kinking, flattening or any defects at all.  Jeeze, I really like working with this stuff.  Check out the fedhillusa.com website, it’s amazing.    This latest batch of tubing should be more than enough to do all the fuel delivery and return lines with enough left over to cover any mistakes I might make along the way.

Modifying the Skid Plates

The local metal fabrication shop cut and bent an eighth inch thick skidplate for the V6 oil pan.  After drilling a one inch diameter hole for the drain plug (that’s the only size hole saw I have) I hand filed the hole to one and a half inch diameter before welding the skid plate to the pan.

I had to do a little work on the transmission/transfercase skid plate also.  When I welded up the exhaust assembly I included a joint below the tranny so the right exhaust pipe could be removed without touching the left side or the rest of the exhaust system.  What I forgot to figure in was the thickness of the clamp holding the exhaust pipes together at this joint so the skid plate had to be slotted to allow the clamp to protrude slightly.  To prevent rock damage (like I’m going to go bashing this thing thru boulders) I welded up a small deflector from eighth inch steel and welded this to the skid plate over the slot.  Just another little OOPSIE which needed to be worked around.

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Police CJ-3B in Ocean’s Eleven

• CATEGORIES: CJ-3B, Features, Fire/Police/Industry Vehicles This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

I have to say, I’m really enjoying my DVR.  It used to be that I would just channel surf during commericals just to see what is play.  Now, being the sophisticated DVRer that I am,  I can channel surf forward in time (which exponentially increases the time I can waste channel surfing) and then record shows that I might want to watch.

One of the shows I found, and recorded, was the original Ocean’s Eleven, which played recently on the Turner Classic Movie Channel.  I have to say that I thought it was a pretty good movie; it was also a great look at the Vegas of the 1950s.

Near the end of the movie, I spotted the Police CJ-3B shown below.  Unfortunately, the CJ-3B was a background piece, so there weren’t any really good shots of it.  I tried to figure out what the wording was along the hood — I don’t think it says “Las Vegas Police Force”.

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At a Walmart Parking Lot in Garden City, Id

• CATEGORIES: Features This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

No doubt most of you have seen the people of Walmart series:  inexplicable photos of Walmart Customers in all kinds of dress that leave you wondering what people are thinking.

Well, the other day I was visiting my local Walmart in Garden City.  I walked by this vehicle, stopped, did a double take, and muttered something like “seriously?”

Then, I came to my senses; Because, really, what do you do when the cardboard separating your bumper from your headlights no longer provides adequate support?  Of course, the natural solution is to slip a crescent wrench into the space.  After all, how much damage could a crescent wrench do if it were to get loose and bounce into the car next to you or behind you ….

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Roberto’s Holiday Cards and more

• CATEGORIES: Artists/Drawings, Features This site contains affiliate links for which I may be compensated.

Roberto has created some special cards for the holiday season (post cards  and christmas cards).  Click on the card below to order them.