What have you done to your JEEP today

Amer-team

Active member
1,704
21
38
Location
Centralia/WA
Well here's the latest update on my M38A1 saga. After being at the mechanics since July 2020 (one month short of 1.5 years) I got tired of him not doing anything and brought it home. Not much was done in the first year. In the last six months he installed the new motor and incorrectly plumbed the fuel system...that's about it. The guys working on it didn't seem too knowledgeable on old jeeps. They kept telling me how my jeep originally came with the 134 Go Devil and the last owner must have swapped in the F head hurricane (all M38A1s came with the F134 Hurricane). I wasn't too impressed with that jeep shop.

I kept the old motor so I can tear it down and see why it failed. I'd like to try and make it run again...hopefully it'll be a good learning experience.

I'm finally done with school so I'll have time to mess with it and hopefully get it running.

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Looks like you have a good basis for a rebuild, restoration there. Happy trails.
 

JEB

Member
73
24
8
Location
Colbert, WA
Well...I FINALLY BOUGHT ONE.
A unit built in March, 1955.

Rust free, unmodified body with just under 50k miles on the odometer.
I bought it at a very VERY good price.

No history with it, the Army numbers are long gone...which made it easy for me to decide to paint it in USAF Strata Blue. It will have a 55Kxxxx AF serial made up of the last four of the Willys serial. On the bumpers, I'll put the unit my father flew for during 1955 and the base I was born at a few weeks before.

I grew up on AF bases, a neighbor used to let me drive his surplus A1 daily driver on the base back roads when I was 10. So it was the first vehicle I ever drove.

It has very decent OD paint, so like many Jeeps allotted to the Air Force, it will remain green under the hood. It has new green canvas seats and a new, never been installed, full top.

It has been fairly well looked after but needs the usual: New seals, gaskets, hoses and belts. The radiator had been cleaned at one time, but I'm doing it again.
Also, we'll rebuild the master cylinder and wheel cylinders, overhaul the steering box.
The biggest and most expensive thing found so far is the need for a new wiring harness. Again, it's the factory unit, attesting to it's original configuration...not being subject to ham-fisted repairs and questionable additions over the years.

Two of the gauges were later model military units, I have sourced period-correct replacements. I found the part numbers in a 1956 edition of the G-758 manual.

The guy doing the work is a MV specialist, Hopefully it will be finished in late January.
 
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Maverick1701

Well-known member
1,389
64
48
Location
Lubbock, TX
congrats on the new jeep. Strata blue jeeps always look SHARP!!!

Well...I FINALLY BOUGHT ONE.
A unit built in March, 1955.

Rust free, unmodified body with just under 50k miles on the odometer.
I bought it at a very VERY good price.

No history with it, the Army numbers are long gone...which made it easy for me to decide to paint it in USAF Strata Blue. It will have a 55Kxxxx AF serial made up of the last four of the Willys serial. On the bumpers, I'll put the unit my father flew for during 1955 and the base I was born at a few weeks before.

I grew up on AF bases, a neighbor used to let me drive his surplus A1 daily driver on the base back roads when I was 10. So it was the first vehicle I ever drove.

It has very decent OD paint, so like many Jeeps allotted to the Air Force, it will remain green under the hood. It has new green canvas seats and a new, never been installed, full top.

It has been fairly well looked after but needs the usual: New seals, gaskets, hoses and belts. The radiator had been cleaned at one time, but I'm doing it again.
Also, we'll rebuild the master cylinder and wheel cylinders, overhaul the steering box.
The biggest and most expensive thing found so far is the need for a new wiring harness. Again, it's the factory unit, attesting to it's original configuration...not being subject to ham-fisted repairs and questionable additions over the years.

Two of the gauges were later model military units, I have sourced period-correct replacements. I found the part numbers in a 1956 edition of the G-758 manual.

The guy doing the work is a MV specialist, Hopefully it will be finished in late January.
 

DeetFreek

Active member
131
130
43
Location
New Sharon IA
20211220_065248.jpgAfter seeing a picture of an engine bay on a buddy's A1 thats being redone, it hit me that the generators are black. My alternator (mine is a 12V setup) isn't black. So, that had to change! Other than smashing my pinky breaking the pulley nut loose, it was a quick and easy transition.
 

Maverick1701

Well-known member
1,389
64
48
Location
Lubbock, TX
I had an afternoon free on Christmas so I took the chance to get some work done on the jeep. I'm using a military distributor with a civilian block so I have to re-clock my oil pump for everything to be timed properly. I found TDC and checked the alignment of the distributor, sure enough it was out. I pulled the distributor and checked the alignment of the oil pump shaft. It was approx 180* out from where it should be. I verified this on my old engine (which did run) and was able to verify I was on the right track with the oil shaft being 180 out.

The oil pump wasn't hard to do but everything was difficult about it. Mainly due to the cramped work area...but I got it unbolted. I had to ask my wife to look down the distributor shaft hole as pulled the pump out about 1in and rotated the inner workings with just my finger-tips (it can't be removed fully due to interference with frame and steering components). Once I had it aligned I reinstalled and and put in the distributor. All looks good so we'll see what happens when it's time to start the jeep again.

The re-clocking of the oil pump was the most difficult job I had pending on the jeep. It's off the list.
Next is to reconnect the fuel lines and add some fuel filters between the tank and pump. I need to get a bunch of brass fittings to make that happen though. Unfortunately that will have to wait until after new-years when we return home.
 

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DeetFreek

Active member
131
130
43
Location
New Sharon IA
I picked up another YS last week for the '53. So, I went ahead and ordered up the correct crossover hose and fording valve and now have an engine bay that looks a little closer to how it should.
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Throttle cable is installed, choke as well (it already was), brackets on and everything is working as it is supposed to. Priming and initial start was a bit of a pain, but it decided to see it my way and fired off. I need to let it sit for a good week to see how well it does on a true cold start, 24 hour starts have been no problems.

I'd like to get the fuel line switched back over to hard line at some point. With the YF, I'd run hard line around the front of the block to the passenger side and up to the front of the carb. Need to snag a couple clamps for the short hose and tidy up a few other things.
 

Maverick1701

Well-known member
1,389
64
48
Location
Lubbock, TX
I finally had some more time to work on the jeep. I hooked up everything and tried to get it to fire with starter fluid (before I went through the trouble of testing it with gas). Well, it didn't fire.

I started with a compression check (dry), and all cylinders are between 90-92 which is good enough for me....but not phenomenal.
Next I checked the spark situation. It turns out I had no spark at the plugs. I pulled the distributor cover and discovered I was getting spark (at the points) but only maybe once per rotor revolution. I went ahead and checked the plug wires and all tested looked good. I checked rotor and it tested good. I pulled the coil and it is dead. The Ohms on both the primary and secondary winding are way out of spec so it's toast....but it's one of those reproduction coils that only last a few years so I'm not completely surprised by this.
Once the new coil arrives I'll test it before installing then see how the spark situation looks and make sure I have spark all the way to the plugs.
 
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