Rebuild page 1
A number of rebuilds are underway at the moment so I intend to show and describe some of the work going on as I am given the information. This page will grow with time.
Bob joined the group having been approached by one of our members after he was spotted driving a Jeep around the area. It turns out Bob had previously restored an MG, but I do not know of any military MGs so enough about that. The Jeep he was driving was actually a Hotchkiss that he had also restored to pristine condition. Once he joined the club, he was obviously bitten by the military bug as he arranged for two Jeeps (a Willys and a Ford) to be shipped over from the States. One he wanted to keep for himself, the other to restore and help pay towards the shipment costs. Both vehicles were sold as roadworthy, though when they arrived this was clearly not the case with more play in the steering than in Shakespeare's Macbeth. Some repair work was going to have to be carried out as well as giving them new coats of paint.
The Ford was going to be kept, so the first vehicle restored was the Willys MBA. No photos are currently available for this rebuild, but such was the quality that the buyer traveled from down south to collect it, saying it was the best Jeep he had seen in all his searches. He had been searching for some time. When you consider that just about every bolt was replaced with new, you can understand why.
This left the Ford GPW. The history is quite interesting, in that it is number 55, as can just be seen on this photo of the chassis number, so quite an early example. The Jeep itself is a "scripted" Ford, in that the Ford logo is shown in relief on the back of the vehicle. Hopefully a photo will be provided shortly to show this feature. The early design can be seen now that the chassis is bare awaiting a respray. The front cross member is the same style as fitted by Willys. This changed in later models to a Ford design. The Jeep was previously owned at some point in its life by Warner Brothers studios, though it is not known which films it may have appeared in.
The rebuild is already well under way. The body has gone away to be repaired and resprayed. The gearbox has been rebuilt, and the rear axle is being tended to at the moment. New brake shoes have been obtained along with a new master cylinder, and just about every bush for the steering and suspension. The chassis is in Bob's garage being rubbed down ready for a respray, as are the springs and steering column. Once the paint has dried, all the new bits can be bolted on. A new carburetor specialist is being sought to rebuild the carb as our local one has just gone out of business. If one can't be found a replacement Solex may be considered.
This first set of photos (received 22/02/2004) shows the chassis being readied for painting, and as it was completed with the springs attached. The lower set shows the front axle changing from its original unkempt appearance to a smartly painted unit, now bolted back on the chassis.
This next set of photos were received on 26/02/04. The top set show the steering gear now attached to the chassis, the engine and gearbox having been resprayed, and detail of one of the front hubs complete with new brake pipes and cylinders. The bottom set show a number of different shots of the engine and gearbox installed in the chassis.