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Hi! New member, starting to look into beginning a Jeep resto!


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Hi everyone,

Just joined the forum so thought it best to introduce myself.

I've always been interested in military vehicles and playing around/tinkering with mechanical 'boys toys'. Having satiated my thirst for a classic car a few years ago I've now decided I want to find myself a WW2 Jeep to restore as my next project. As I'm interested in/enjoy the restoration process I'm not looking for a great condition running vehicle (plus the bank balance wouldn't allow that!) but rather a good start to build up over a (probably long) period of time. I'm not planning on making it factory fresh/concourse winning, rather I'd like a Jeep that retains it's wartime character, dents and all but runs well! Also hoping to use original WW2 parts as much as possible and try to stay away from repro or Hotchkiss parts (although have already been warned this could be one hell of a pipe dream 😆). Plan is it would become a British, Royal Army Ordnance Corps (RAOC) vehicle when finished.

Any and all advice/help is gratefully received!

Cheers, Nick

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Hi and welcome, all I can say from experience is buy the most complete vehicle you can afford, it's getting all those small, missing parts that breaks the bank!

But before you even start to look for a jeep, studying is required and there is lots of information available on the net and in books (you're going to need some of those) to start from.

Also have a look on the g530.com jeep forum, lots of expertise there too.

 

Good luck!

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IMHO    If the entry £$  you have in mind will get you a real nice  genuine Hotchkiss M201  (then go for that) - then go for that .   Keep off any that have MALT or Greek  origins  (that could be from approx. before 1980 shoreside),  many Willys MB or Ford GPW  have been turned by substitution of parts and ask top$  , you would need expert opinion - as a sound tub etc. could be Filipino , a repaired tub could be just rubbish ,   2021 - a bit late in the day for a heavy project.

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Hi guys,

 

Yep heard a lot now "buy the best you can afford". To be honest right now that may be a chassis...plus I actually want the project, I don't want a good to go Jeep and I want wartime not a Hotchkiss! I'm aware this makes it difficult but I'm prepared for this to be a long term project!

Oh I'm diving into the black hole of studying haha! Have ordered a couple of books already. One I'm struggling to find is John Farley's Standardised Wartime Jeep 2 though!

Thanks for the g530 heads up, have opened an account!

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Yes, I heard Farley vol. 2 is hard to find at the moment. Have a look at a Parts List and a Technical Manual, both are available as reprints.

I didn't say BEST but MOST COMPLETE you can afford, most of the sheet metal is relatively easy to replace if needed but original jeep parts can be pricey, and sometimes (very) hard to find. Of course it all depends on make and the date of delivery. That being said, jeeps are offered for sale regularly so you can walk away from any you don't really fancy.

Btw I saw I made a typo, it's g503.com, not 530.com lol

 

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Have managed to be sent a .pdf of the parts list which is excellent and have bought the 'Complete WW2 Military Manual' from amazon. 

Sorry if I misquoted you @earlymb! I am definitely finding that original Jeep parts are pricey, especially boxed unopened cosmoline wrapped F marked parts (been watching a couple on eBay and my god they jumped up in price in the last few minutes 😲!)  

I've already walked away from one chassis after some expert advice from the MVT! Haha yep, I made the same typo!

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EBay has is uses.. But I would recommend trying to source your project by other routes.. In part that is because the prices you see currently on eBay are top end

.. The current covid crisis complicates things but join the Military vehicle trust and look for a project amongst its members and the green sheets (club adverts) there are always unfinished  projects and pricing is at club level...

You could also look at milweb...both the classifieds and dealers.. There are project jeeps arriving from the US regularly ....cast your net wide 

The third option is to source a jeep yourself from the USA or Canada .. They were used like tractors on farms and turn up regularly for restoration ..

When Brexit settles down Europe might be a further option.. People will warn you about Greek jeeps ..but I have one and it's more authentic than many i see at shows . The Greek jeeps were in military service for 30 plus years and many were converted to carry recoilless anti tank weapons ...so yes they had a hard life but had good maintenance ..

A few options to consider 

 

Jenkinov

 

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Funny how we in the US are exporting Jeeps and importing Ferrets and CVR(T)!

I understand wanting a Jeep and all.  Thing is, original parts are pretty well picked over by this point so it's easy to build a Jeep if you don't mind repro parts.  I applaud your desire to keep it original but it is a hard road.  If you wanted original and WWII at this point it might actually be easier to get a Dodge WC or something of that stripe since repro parts aren't so common and there are still a good many "barn find" condition vehicles out there for little money.  Just a thought.  Good luck in any case.

A local example near me, Pretty complete, unrestored, sort-of running 1943 Ford G8t for $2500.  hhttps://sacramento.craigslist.org/cto/d/wheatland-1943-ford-military-g8t-truck/7271582462.html

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Teletech what a fantastic example of a great project.. Love the fact it is a running vehicle ..a The advert has already prompted a detailed discussion with my son on shipping and import costs ..

We have 2 active projects ...but how tempting 

Jenkinov

 

 

 

 

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Yeh, prices on eBay do seem to be in the higher end quite often sadly!

I have joined the MVT and already had some excellent help from them which is great. Yet to see the Green Sheets though, any idea how I can see them? 

You are right jenkinov, COVID isn't helping (as with all walks of life!), I've seen a couple of tubs and chassis online that I'd like to view but clearly can't right now! 

I'd love to go out to the USA and do some hunting post COVID! My idea of a holiday that!!

Teletech, I've always been up for a challenge! Totally get your point about the difficulties in keeping all original, but I'd love to atleast give it a go! That truck does look great though haha, sadly wouldn't fit in my garage though, Jeep sized projects are about as big as I can go at the moment!

Edited by Powdermonkey52
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1 hour ago, jenkinov said:

Teletech what a fantastic example of a great project.. Love the fact it is a running vehicle ..a The advert has already prompted a detailed discussion with my son on shipping and import costs ..

We have 2 active projects ...but how tempting 

Jenkinov

If you get serious about the Ford, I might be able to help. 

I've owned a '44 GPW in the past and helped a friend with his 2-owner GPW, but I will say it's cool to see someone with something less common. I've noticed a number of "Burma Jeeps" for sale in my neck of the woods and found those very tempting.

This is what I see for Jeeps near me just as a data point: https://sfbay.craigslist.org/nby/cto/d/bodega-bay-1946-willys-jeep/7273684668.html  and  https://sfbay.craigslist.org/nby/cto/d/windsor-1945-jeep-ford/7258999914.html

You might also check EarlyCJ5.com as a forum.  It's lower traffic than G503 and flat-fenders are only a small part of what's going on there but that means it's often not as picked-over with respect to stuff for sale.  Of course, it's mostly on the wrong side of a lot of water from you gents.

 

 

 

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Powder monkey 52

The Willy s MB and Ford GPWs were in service with European armies for 30 to 40 years after the end of WW2 .whilst there were huge stocks of ww2  spares  These were gradually used up and my the time of the Korean war the US army when refurbishing jeeps in Japan for Korea was fitting CJ5 engines .by the late 50s the French army had exhausted their huge spares stockpiles and applied to remanufactured the jeep under licence .The Hotchkiss 

Whilst it followed the jeep patterns French increased the thickness of the chassis steel and made many minor improvements including converting the electrics to 12 then 24 volt ..

The challenge when loo!ing for original parts is that only a small percentage will be genuine ww2 ..most will be remanufactured  in the intervening years ..(.but arguably ex military will be to a good standard )Then you get the spares remanufactured in the last 20 years specifically for the hobby market ..within these are excellent quality spares ..often French or American ..but there are also cheaply manufactured parts of poor quality trying to get the job but restores money ..As an example i purchased a distributor cap off eBay as an emergency reserve . The day I needed it i found it would not seat correctly and that the centre had been drilled with the wrong offset so The rotary arm hit some contacts and missed others ..total junk .

Whilst I admire your aspiration to rebuild a jeep with original parts . My gut feel is much of what you will buy ...Will not be genuine ww2 but in fact remanufactured post war spares at best. 

As a test ring any of the UK based jeep specialists and ask what percentage of their parts are guaranteed  ww2 spares ..

Jenkinov

 

 

 

 

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Jenkinov  -  I see you are Yorkshire based ,  did you ever witness the Jeep end of yard belonging  Bob Isles   - Isles Transport  (as well as other trade , trailers - not all his property  LoL) ,  The Forge  @ Darlington   ?      The most ideal date would have been circa.  1970  - and that is now a half-century ago.  

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Hi Rudy

I was in Darlington this morning but never saw the Isles Transport yard in Darlington in the 1970s ..In 1979/80 I started looking actively for a Jeep Then in the 1990 but it was not until the 2000s that I acquired one .

Jenkinov

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45 minutes ago, jenkinov said:

Hi Rudy

I was in Darlington this morning but never saw the Isles Transport yard in Darlington in the 1970s ..In 1979/80 I started looking actively for a Jeep Then in the 1990 but it was not until the 2000s that I acquired one .

Jenkinov

I think the Isles family must still own much of what is known now as Cleveland Trading Estate.    Bob Isles was using the huge original Darlington Forge Building.    He was BIG for Jeeps  ,  Feb.  1971  -  I purchased a new crated engine off him ,  out of a container - many were stacked under snow.   Inside the forge Jeeps were stacked four high , in the yard were artic trailers loaded 3 or 4 high  -   he must have had well over  100  qty.  He sold them to dealers by the trailer load.   I don't think I called between  1971 and 1980 because he was doing time(s) for artic trailer theft  !         1980 - he showed me what a Hotchpotch & straight M201  were.  1980 - he was also selling Ex  US air force Sherpa pick-ups ,  so it may have been true that he was getting most of his Jeeps (early days)  from US forces  ?   I would estimate 50% +  of Jeeps on the show scene in UK must have originated via.  Bob Isles.

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Welcome, and good luck, i have had mine for around 12 months now first impressions were it looked ok at best, many months down the line i have asked a time served Jeep restorer for help, you do not know what is inside the tin until you open it (ie tub off etc) and that is just the start, you can see my MB in the thread new member new jeep, there is now a dedicated thread to its restoration.

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Hello Nick, Like you I always wanted a military vehicle and after many years decided to restore a Jeep. The problem in the Uk is that there are not that many project jeeps around, and the ones that do come up for sale are often at crazy prices. For me these were always outside of my budget and often when you looked closely they had been messed about with so much, there was not alot of original WW2 parts. Wrong engine, T90 gearbox for example. So I decide on a different approach and build one from parts, starting with a GPW chassis that I purchased for a reasonable price. Two years later I have a rolling chasssis with engine and transmission. It may not be the easiest or quicked way, but it spreads the cost and allows you to be selective over the parts going into the restoration. Heres a picture of what I started with and where I am now.Regards John.

IMG_2505.jpeg

IMG_0495.JPG

Edited by jonggd
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10 hours ago, jonggd said:

Hello Nick, Like you I always wanted a military vehicle and after many years decided to restore a Jeep. The problem in the Uk is that there are not that many project jeeps around, and the ones that do come up for sale are often at crazy prices. For me these were always outside of my budget and often when you looked closely they had been messed about with so much, there was not alot of original WW2 parts. Wrong engine, T90 gearbox for example. So I decide on a different approach and build one from parts, starting with a GPW chassis that I purchased for a reasonable price. Two years later I have a rolling chasssis with engine and transmission. It may not be the easiest or quicked way, but it spreads the cost and allows you to be selective over the parts going into the restoration. Heres a picture of what I started with and where I am now.Regards John.

IMG_2505.jpeg

IMG_0495.JPG

 

Hi John,

 

So great to hear from someone who has made this approach work, it's exactly what I want to do and for the same reasons as you! 

Your chassis and engine are looking awesome! Whereabouts are you in the UK? Did you rebuild your engine too?

Nick

 

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One possible problem with this approach these days, is that before you are able to apply for a registration document, you have to get a NOVA document from HMRC stating that there is no VAT to pay. How will you tell them where you got the vehicle from?

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4 minutes ago, MB1944 said:

One possible problem with this approach these days, is that before you are able to apply for a registration document, you have to get a NOVA document from HMRC stating that there is no VAT to pay. How will you tell them where you got the vehicle from?

Having done quite a lot of research now and having also spoken to the MVT, it is possible to buy chassis with NOVA certificates (they tend to be GPWs as these have stamped serial numbers). 

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Hello Nick, I am in Mid Bedfordshire, and yes I did rebuild the engine. It is in fact an MB engine as these are easier to find these days. The Ford engines are more susceptible to cracking so I went with an MB for now. John.

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5 hours ago, Powdermonkey52 said:

Having done quite a lot of research now and having also spoken to the MVT, it is possible to buy chassis with NOVA certificates (they tend to be GPWs as these have stamped serial numbers). 

Hello Gents, I did actually get the chassis with a Nova number, I believe the chassis came from Australia. I have the serial number, being a GPW it is stamped on the chassis as still legible helping with aging the vehicle. 

Edited by jonggd
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Have you determined if this line of approach is to be considered by the  DVLA as a  'reconstructed' vehicle , rather than as a 'rebuilt'  vehicle (a more generous determination) .   This as I see it is where a  'true'  rolling chassis with accrued points (best documented) is a far better proposition than a bare chassis  - with regards to the major components.  Using a  MB engine rather than a Ford  is hardly a true reflection of the marque .

 

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11 minutes ago, ruxy said:

Have you determined if this line of approach is to be considered by the  DVLA as a  'reconstructed' vehicle , rather than as a 'rebuilt'  vehicle (a more generous determination) .   This as I see it is where a  'true'  rolling chassis with accrued points (best documented) is a far better proposition than a bare chassis  - with regards to the major components.  Using a  MB engine rather than a Ford  is hardly a true reflection of the marque .

 

Hello Ruxy, the question of rebuilt or reconstructed is as subject of some debade, and open to interpretation. At what point does a rebuild become reconstruction? I am not sure and would ask does it really matter. As to your comment "Using a  MB engine rather than a Ford  is hardly a true reflection of the marque", the Willys and Ford Jeeps were both manufactured with fully interchangeable parts. During their service life many Jeeps ended up with mixed Willys or Ford components. In the field they did not care about originality, so many Jeeps ended their serice life with different engines. You are right, if you are looking for factory delivered example, it should all match. Regads John

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29 minutes ago, ruxy said:

Have you determined if this line of approach is to be considered by the  DVLA as a  'reconstructed' vehicle , rather than as a 'rebuilt'  vehicle (a more generous determination) .   This as I see it is where a  'true'  rolling chassis with accrued points (best documented) is a far better proposition than a bare chassis  - with regards to the major components.  Using a  MB engine rather than a Ford  is hardly a true reflection of the marque .

 

Advice to me from the MVT was all that matters is the chassis. So aslong as you have a chassis that can be documented (so probably a GPW stamped chassis) and the appropriate axels etc. (I.e. you don't put for example landrover axels on instead of jeep axels) the DVLA will register as a historic vehicle using the date of the chassis. If though you put landrover axels on a GPW chassis its likely they would consider it a reconstruction or kit car. The chassis is the most important part in the DVLAs eyes.

 

 

This is the advice I got from the MVT:

"So if you build a WW2 GPW with an original chassis, then it is a WW2 GPW. When basically complete, the DVLA will want a verification letter from a recognised club (the MVT is one) stating the vehicle is what is claimed, with the club’s sources  of information to support that. That is the key. You will of course need other things to register it as well, like a NOVA certificate, DVLA forms, the fee, etc, all of which are no problem. And then you get a V5C with an age-related registration, “Historic” status (inc zero road tax) and the date of manufacture stated on the V5."

Edited by Powdermonkey52
Clarification and added quote from MVT
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