Help ID M37 LWB

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Black Ops

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The Ordnance Corps is responsible for procuring vehicles for the Army I believe. All Army m37 trucks I have seen have that, or ORD DEPT on the earlier ones. T-245A is the Dodge model designation for the "B1" series of trucks. Regular m37s were just T245. The engine number should start with T245A if it is original.

The bed on your truck looks like it is from a regular m37 (1954 or earlier). The beds from 1958 and up have minor differences. Any dataplates inside on the driver's door or holes from them? If it was a contact truck it might have an extra lever inside the cab for the rear PTO.
 

njfarmer

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Try Canadian military surplus tires. They deal on ebay or you can go to their web site. They are located near Toronto. I just purchased 11.00x20's from them for my Deuce.Even with the freight and customs they were a great deal.
 

Scottyairborne

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What I have learned so far, and questions that remain for me:

1. This truck was indeed a 1958 M56B1 with winch and spotlight.

2. No indication of door plates to verify which unit may have procured it. Definitely US issue, but hard to say from there.

3. Most likely a utility truck of some variation.

What I am interested in knowing:

1. Did all M56B1 vehicles left the factory as cab and chassis and end users had built up to suit?

2. I have read there were something like 560 M56B1 with winch produced. Out of that would include fire/crash rescue, different utility truck configurations, etc. ?

3. What is the impact to my vehicle’s value having a non-standard configuration (bed from M37)? I am considering modifying the platform in front of the bed and adding side facing jump seats (like the ones in an M37A1 bed by the spare tire). Other options are to leave it, switch bed with an M101a1 with minor tweaks to fit. Will this hurt the value, or should I consider passing on to a collector due to rarity of the M56 models? I am sure someone is willing to build a period correct utility bed, but that is not me...
 

Black Ops

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I'm not sure if Dodge completely built the trucks or just supplied the cab and chassis to companies to finish assembly with the rear bodies. As far as I know all the crash trucks were built on the m56 chassis so the 560 number would not include them. I think the only trucks that would be marked with m56b1 data plates are the contact maintenance trucks.

A friend of mine had a m201 telephone truck that had a flatbed on it. We put a m101 trailer bed on it and it looked pretty good. The front rail had to be cut off the bed and it was a little too close to the cab though. If I were doing it on a nice truck like yours I would probably cut a few inches out of the front section of the trailer bed to make it fit right. It would be very unlikely for a collector to find a correct bed to put on your frame so if you like the truck I would just do whatever you want with it.
 

Scottyairborne

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I think I will enjoy with the platform, eventually add some side facing troop seats with belts (makes legal in my state for kids). Really want to just get some miles on it and locate some more modern tires (hopefully taller to help with gearing).
 

Scottyairborne

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My Current Directions:

After long review if tire and rim options, I am considering the HMMVW rims with Budd centers and the Goodyear MT 37x12.5 with PVC inserts. I really want a better ride, while also having beadlock capabilities off-road. The complete lack of 11.00r16s availabilitymakes this direction an easier decision.

I am thinking about skimming the head and port job, balance rotating assembly, 2 barrel or dual carbs, dual exhaust with full dual stacks. If I can get a reliable 120 or 130 horses that should turn the tires, may consider 4.89s eventually but stick to what I have for a while.
 

nattieleather

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My only question on this is how long will 16.5 inch tires be available? The automotive market has moved away from 16.5 and has gone either 16, 17, or 18 inch. So, 10 years from now when you need new rubber will we be able to get HMMWV size tires? That is why I've been shying away from the HMMWV rims. There are other beadlock options out there if you want a beadlock.
 

Sgt Jiggins

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Don't know if bead locks are a requirement or just a desire... but I'm very happy with some custom wheels I got from Stockton wheel. They're made of 1/2" plate. I'm running some 1100R16 Michelin XZL 10Ply tires I bought from Colony Tire in Norfolk,VA.
 

Scottyairborne

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I am not seeing much availability for 110R16, which would be high on my list. Those tires could sway me, but if not and I can run HMMWV rims and tires for the next 10 years then Trail Worthy Fab it is.
 
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