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Jessie The Jeep

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About Jessie The Jeep

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  • Birthday January 1

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  • Location
    100th Bomb Group HQ
  • Interests
    Aviation, MV's, Photography, Model Railroading, Astronomy - oh, and I don't do 'friends lists'!
  • Occupation
    Model Maker
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  1. With the coronavirus lockdown tightening, "Hope", has followed "Faith" the Dodge and is now up on wooden blocks to take the weight off the tyres. The prospect of getting out is fairly low, especially since I need to move a normal car and the other Jeep to get "Hope" out of the garage. So for now, the Dodge and GPW are off their wheels and off the road and taking a rest until this all blows over. "Jessie" is still accessible and able to be driven, so I have the option of going for a drive should conditions allow, or to take the vehicle out, turn the wheels and park up again. Until the virus situation takes a turn for the better, two thirds of my fleet are hibernating.
  2. When I started stripping my Ford, the farmer who had previously owned it, welded some plate steel over the original rotten floor. In doing so, he managed to weld the floor to the chassis. I had to cut big holes through the floor until I could reach all of the weld to cut it free. Only then could I get the body off!
  3. I just put two and a half gallons of fuel in a couple of weeks ago. Normally over the winter when there's no events, I either get them out on the drive once a month, give them a good warm through, exercise the brakes and clutch etc, or so long as there's no salt on the roads, go for a short drive. I'm probably going to be doing this over the Summer. So long as we aren't all confined to barracks, I may take them out on the date events were to happen and dig out some old event photos from that show. We can have a virtual season.
  4. March 21st - Putting Faith to Bed With the coronavirus lock down only likely to become more severe and the 2020 MV events falling like dominos, we popped over to say good night to "Faith" for some time. I normally go every 6 weeks to 2 months to run the engine, exercise the clutch and brakes and turn the wheels if not being driven. The likelyhood is, Faith may not be out at all this year. The battery has been out for the winter, but with the lock down and the possibility of not being able to visit, I went over and jacked up the truck to get the weight off the wheels to avoid tyre flat spots. The truck is now perched on some axle stands, an inch or so above the container floor. Quite hard work to operate the jack at the back, where you have to be lying down to get the jack far enough under to reach the axles. The fuel tank then doesn't give much room to operate the jack. At least there's enough roof clearance in the container, even if the sides are a tight fit! The brakes were exercised and the handbrake released. The clutch was also operated and the clutch pedal was left in the disengaged position. So the mileometer seems very unlikely to clock up much, if any mileage this year. Since the two Jeeps live at home in the garage, they are easier to maintain and check over in the event of a more serious lockdown being enforced.
  5. Test Drive - March 18th By mid March 2020, the coronavirus had caused the cancellation of the York Crank Up, "Against the Odds" at Elvington, Blyth Battery Goes to War, Heugh Battery and Barnard Castle 1940's Weekend. Many more would likely follow. As the virus spreads, the chances of a more severe lockdown increase, so I took the opportunity to take Jessie out for a short test drive, to check for leaks after the work on the fuel and oil filters. It was only a short trip out, but enough for a test and to get some fresh air and exercise. Jessie was still in the Airbase Medical Unit markings from last year; somewhat appropriate considering what is currently going on.
  6. Can you get REME involved in this? I know that locally, they've done vehicle moves for collectors as training exercises.
  7. I don't believe they have the staff to do it and most likely wouldn't know what they were looking at anyway! That's why the MVT did the job previously.
  8. Despite its size, the Victor cockpit is tiny! Here's the one at Elvington. Even with seats out, it wouldn't be a big space!
  9. The MVT verified my GPW without a visit; from a description by me and a number of photographs of the vehicle, its serial and various period and Ford features. The Jeep was at the end of its restoration when I applied to the MVT and then the DVLA. I seem to recall they they would only verify a virtually complete vehicle, though I don't recall whether they would verify one prior to stripping it down.
  10. March 1st - Fuel and Oil Filter On March 1st, I refitted the oil filter. I'd done the whole job without draining the oil from the can, just taping up the inlet and outlet connections. Like on Jessie, the hardest part was to connect it all back together, supporting it with one hand, tightening bolts with the other, all without scratching the new decals! Once it was all back together again, the engine was given another test run to check for fuel and oil leaks and all seemed well, though I'll give them both another check on the drive once the weather warms up. March 7th - 12 volt and USB Power Supply Over Saturday 7th, I made a wooden box to mount the power supply unit into and to hide away all the wiring. I decided not to fasten the box into the glove box as I didn't want to drill any holes through the glove box floor. There was a small gap between the glovebox floor and the firewall, just big enough to pass a positive supply wire up into the glove box. The earth wire is attached to one of the glove box hinge bolts. The other end of the positive wire goes through an existing cable hole in the firewall and off to the battery isolator. There's a switch on the box to cut off power to the three outputs and when it is not needed, it can be pushed back into the glove box out of the way. The cigar socket can now be used for powering a satnav if required and there's a 1AH and 2.1AH USB output for phone charging or other USB accessories. It's nice to have the voltage indicator too.
  11. February 29th - Oil Filter Decals The oil filter on the Ford was still in decent condition, only needing a few paint touch ups where the mounting rings had worn through the paint. After trouble with the first set of Ford decals, the replacement set were behaving themselves. I began with the decal on the lid. There was only a slight double curvature on the lid and so there were only a few small wrinkles to treat with Microsol. Before I applied the other two side decals, I thought I'd have a quick check of my reference photos for positioning. I'd found a few recent restorations on the net, but hadn't given them much of a glance until now. It was at that point where I noticed that some had the Ford 'f' badge at the top of the can, while others had it at the bottom. It took quite a long time searching the net to finally find some black and white original wartime photos showing the oil filter and used those as reference. The other two decals were on a single curvature face and so were applied without problems, but plenty of Microsol to get them to settle into the painted surface. After several applications of Microsol had done its thing and I'd gently rolled out any air bubbles with a cotton bud, they were left to harden overnight.
  12. February 28th - Fuel Filter The original main fuel filter gasket had become hard and after seeing the Hotchkiss filter, I discovered the smaller gasket was missing. I'd bought some gasket sheet so cut some new ones. The filter was then refitted to the Jeep and it was given a short test run.
  13. March 1st - Fuel and Oil Filter After refitting the fuel filter, I tried using the hand operated fuel pump to pull the fuel through the system and fill the filter bowl. It didn't seem to matter how much I operated the pump, I couldn't get the fuel through. Now the tank was almost empty, so I did wonder whether the fuel level was lower than the tank feed pipe, but my gut feeling that the problem lay in the filter. So the filter was removed again and I cut a new gasket for the main lip of the bowl. It was refitted again and this time, the pump worked to pull the fuel through to the carb. I couldn't run the engine however as the oil filter wasn't yet fitted. Before I could refit the oil filter, there were a few jobs to do. The bolts on the oil filter clamps have always been tight, so I decided I'd use a tap and die and clean up the threads. Upon close inspection of the bolts, one didn't look right. It turned out, that some numbty French squaddie long ago, had replaced one of the UNF bolts with the closest he could find, a metric M8 bolt! The threads must be fairly similar however and I was able to re-tap the correct thread without too much debris. A replacement UNF bolt was found in my old tobacco tins of nuts and bolts etc., and the new bolt screwed in firmly without play. The three other holes were tapped to clean the threads and the bolts screwed into a die for the same reason. The oil filter mounting rings were quite tatty so they were repainted the day before and baked in the curing cabinet over night. Fastening the oil filter back on was a bit of a struggle to hold everything, get the bolts through the brackets and the oil filler pipe bracket, line them up with the holes and do it all without scratching the new decals. None of this was easy with the bottom oil pipe connected, but this was necessary due to the space limitations caused by the huge Hotchkiss alternator. Anyway, with everything connected up the engine was given a very short test run and all seemed well. Before running the engine any further, I bought five gallons of fresh fuel, and split it between the two Jeeps. The Jeep was started up again and driven out of the garage, turned around and parked up inside again. Having the Ford facing outwards and Jessie engine in to the garage, gives just a little more room between them to squeeze through.
  14. Thanks. Just found one of them 5 minutes ago. I tried so many search combonations of GPW, oil filter, decals etc, but most gave modern restorations, not wartime pics.
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