Ordnance – Remanufactureing Research Archives

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Jeep Reconditioning Programs in the U.S.

• CATEGORIES: Features, International, Ordnance - Remanufactureing

UPDATE: This was originally published in 2013.

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The Bechtel-McCone Remanufacturing Process rebuilt from an article in issue #122 of the Army Motors Magazine Winter ’08 by Lloyd White

One topic that appears in my new book is the 1941 attack on Russia by Hitler.  Called operation Barbarossa and named for the medieval Holy Roman Emperor Frederick Barbarossa it was the largest invasion in the history of warfare. It included three million soldiers, 600,000 vehicles, and 750,000 horses.  For comparison, the D-Day invasion force was approximately 150,000 men.  Even a month later, only a million men had landed on the beaches of Normandy.

Supporting these huge numbers required plenty of logistics. For example, the German military had 250 companies of veterinarians that, at the height of the war, were capable of servicing almost 100,000 horses a day.  Near the end of the war, horses became vital for the Germans on the Eastern front, as the terrain was often too inhospitable for vehicles, if they had any running vehicles at all.

What does this have to do with jeeps? Well, despite their disposable nature, many people don’t know that the U.S. Army’s Ordnance Department created special facilities to rebuild jeeps (and other vehicles).  Facilities were located both in the U.S. and abroad.  Here’s some information about the US divisions.

I spent time last night, probably too much, gathering and organizing some information about these programs.  The idea and much of this information came from Maury Hurt’s efforts to gather and document reconditioning programs.  There are a variety of threads about these at G503.  However, what I didn’t see was a place that gathered the information together as I have below. I expect to add to this post over time with more information about the international programs.

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Steam cleaning jeeps at Bechtel-McCone’s remanufacturing facility in Birmingham, Alabama.

UNITED STATES REMANUFACTURING:
The following companies remanufactured a total of 16,176 jeeps in the United States according to Charlie Weaver via Jim Allen’s book “Jeep”. There are examples of the data plates applied to the dash of jeeps by the companies below.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find examples for all the companies. Next to the companies are the number of jeeps each is credited with rebuilding.

1. Bechtel McCone 4,986
2. Allison Steel Manufacturing Company Plate 2,865
3. Moore Equipment Co plate and a second one and a third one. 2,443
4. Higgins Plastic Corp 1,850
5. Stewart & Stevenson 1,750
6. W.A. Bechtel plate 1,555
7. Bishop McCormick & Bishop (no examples found) 343
8. International Diesel (no examples found) 267
9. Vancura Motor Company (no examples found) 66
10. A.M. Meyerstein (no examples found) 49

I found these plates in several locations (documented in the links above) and then organized them as you see. I thought it would help people who run into plates, but don’t know what they have.

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1942 Reconditioned GPW Queens, NY **SOLD**

• CATEGORIES: GPW (Ford MB), Ordnance - Remanufactureing

UPDATE: **SOLD** Was $5500.

Here’s a rare Higgins reconditioned jeep, one of 1,850 refurbished by the company. Learn more about the reconditioning program here. It does not run.

1942 Ford GPW w/ GPW engine. Jeep rebuilt by Higgins in New Orleans, Feb. 1945. Not running. Engine free- As is $5500 or best offer.”

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Ordnance Transforms Jeep to Sedan

This post was originally published Nov 20, 2013. It shows a jeep that was altered into sedan.

UPDATE: This photograph pair was also published in the February 22, 1945, issue of the IBT Roundup (Inda-Burma Theater Roundup)

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The May 1945 issue of Popular Mechanics published this little blurb about the 8th Air Force Bomber Station’s effort to transform a jeep into a sedan using only salvaged materials.

You can view the document online at Google

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1942 MB/GPW Allison Reconditioned Gustine, CA **SOLD**

• CATEGORIES: GPW (Ford MB), MB, Ordnance - Remanufactureing

UPDATE: **SOLD** Was on eBay

It’s not a great specimen, but this jeep was one of a couple thousand jeeps reconditioned/remanufactured by the Allison Steel Manufacturing Corporation. Learn more about the remanufacturing program here.

“Im listing this jeep for a friend: Very Rare March 1942 Ford GPW World War 2 Jeep. This one is very interesting because its a WW2 Willy’s MB frame stamped GPW 6559. As you can tell by the number its early for a WW2 Jeep. And the date plates on the glove box match the frame numbers of GPW 6559. There is a Reconditioning Date plate on the center of the dash saying that it was reconditioned in Phoenix Arizona on February 1945!

The engine is out of a M38A1 and runs well from what we can tell. It was reconditioned by Ralph’s Machine Shop from San Jose, Ca. in December 1976. The transmission is a MB T84. It don’t shift do to 1 tooth broken off. The inside of the transmission looks very clean. The transfer is a Ford GPW marked.

The front seats are in excellent condition and are “F” marked and so are the fenders(no rust on fenders) and some other bolts on the jeep because its a GPW body. Floors have rust by don’t look too bad. Data Plates are original, one is steel and the others are brass. Rear of body is skinned, original sheet metal is still underneath. Gauges are original except for the temperature gauge. Steering box is “F” marked. We believe it has a M38 gas tank? Front window frame in great shape, inner is in good shape except for the inner center bar which can be easily replaced. Brake system is dry, no fluid. Front and rear of frame need work near the bumpers. Please check out the pictures.

He was planning to restore it but already has one he is working on. One of the Outstanding things about this jeep is the low serial numbers of 6559 and the MB frame stamped GPW! Meaning Ford used Willys frames at the factory. And that the data plates match the frame, all Very Cool. Definately worth a restoration.”

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Jeep Sling from the 881st Ordnance

I spotted this article about slinging a jeep on LoanSentry.com.  Apparently, during WW2 the folks in the 881st Ordnance were slinging plenty of jeeps, enough that they created a system for it and published the results in

You can view a variety of the ordnance documents at vmpa.ordnanacereproductions.com. It looks like a cool resource.

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