WW2 Jeep Consumables for Restoration

I was asked the other day what products I have used during the restoration of my GPW, and that got me to thinking to create a list. So, here’s a first go at a comprehensive list of consumables to keep on hand. It includes products for the jeep’s general maintenance as well as restoration materials.

 

Jeep Tune-Up

Oil Filter – Napa 1100

Oil canister copper crush washers

Fuel Filter – inline, under fuel tank (late war jeeps have no firewall filter)

Air Filter – dry type, retrofitted

 

Jeep Fluids

10W-40 Diesel Oil – Shell Rotella and the like

30W Break-In Oil – Brad Penn

GL-1 Gear Oil for transmission and t/c – Sta-lube

85W-90 Gear Oil for differentials – Sta-lube

Grease – Sta-lube

Brake Fluid (Dot 5)

Coolant – Evan’s Waterless

 

Personal Protective Equipment

Dust Mask – RZ Mask F1 carbon

Gloves – Nitrile 9 mil

Face Mask – 3M full shield (not really a consumable, but I’ve gone through many)

 

Sealers and Such

Permatex #2 Aviation

Permatex Ultra Black

Copper gasket spray

Lock-tite blue

Permatex Teflon (fluid, not tape)

Permatex Anti-seize

Di-electric grease

Gasket paper

Exhaust pipe – Permatex sealer

 

Cleaners

Brake Cleaner

WD-40

Spray degreaser – POR-15

Parts degreaser – Super Clean

Rust Treatment – POR-15

Pre-paint cleaner – 97% alcohol, generic from pharmacy

Rust Penetrant – Liquid Wrench

Carb Cleaner – Chem-Dip

Glass Cleaner – Windex

 

All-Metal filler

Oatey Instant Solder

Gear marking compound – yellow

Welding wire

Air tool oil

Cutting oil

 

Mini propane bottles for heat shrinking

Grinding and cut-off wheels

Wire wheels for angle grinder

Sand paper wheels 80 and 120 grit

Sanding paper for body-working pads

Emory cloth

Scotch-brite pads

Surfacing wheels for air tools

Aluminum oxide for blast cabinet

Dremel assortment (brushes, grinding)

Razor blades

Rags / towels

 

WW2 Jeep Late-War Fuel Line Routing

For the majority of the production run of WW2 jeeps, the fuel line ran from the tank, across the body tub to a fuel filter / strainer high up on the passenger side firewall, then down the passenger side of the engine and across the front to the fuel pump. Such a system had advantages for deep water fording and easy maintenance on the filter assembly. Disadvantages included the long fuel line routing, many fittings, challenges in removing trapped air, and an increase potential for damage.

In 1944 a change in production was made to eliminate the firewall-mounted filter and to run the fuel line directly from the tank, up the driver’s side frame to the fuel pump. A fuel filter was incorporated into the fuel tank. The fuel tanks received a new part number, A-15507, with A-15508 ceramic strainer assembly in tank. The Engineering Change Order by the military was made on July 17, 1944.  Willys then received the order and mandated the change on August 9, 1944. (Tom Wolboldt) It would appear that the new system began to appear on MBs in late December of 1944, although Nabholtz says January 1945. GPWs, of course, began at a later date. To confuse matters, when jeeps appeared with the direct fuel line, the firewalls of the tubs still contained the captive nuts for the fuel strainer. These firewall-mounted captive nuts were not eliminated by the producer of the tubs, ACM, until May of 1945.

The tank-mounted ceramic filters can be a real problem for restorers. 75 years of varnished fuel sitting in the tank clogs up the filters’ ceramic pores and usually can’t be dissolved. Such tanks often have access holes cut into their tops to reach the filters to remove them.

GPW 270351 has a DOD of June 1, 1945. Her tub is original and does not have fuel strainer captive nuts. Here’s the routing of the fuel line from the tank towards the firewall. I’ve added a fuel filter directly outside of the tank so that the engine bay looks original. (the filter is quite dirty; I’ll be using it for the first few tankfuls of gas to trap the debris and sediment from this tank.) Of note is the clip to the hat channel, pictured at lower right. This clip is hugely important as it keeps the fuel line tucked up above the brake / clutch tube.

_Fuel Line 2

Here’s the routing of the line just inside the engine bay. The clip holding the line to the body tub gusset is also very important. It locks down the line so that it can’t rub on the sharp edge of the gusset.   _Fuel Line

Behind the gusset, between the gusset clip and hat channel clip, there is no other support for the line. Be careful that the line does not touch the edge of the frame as it moves to the interior. Otherwise it will rub and wear the line, believe me.  _Fuel Line 3

Here’s the remainder of the line in the engine bay. The two clips shown below will bolt to the inside of the fender, giving the fuel line a total of four clips. Note that original clips are F-marked.  _Fuel Line 4

_Fuel Line 5

WW2 Jeep Fuel Gauge Troubleshooting

Like a lot of jeep owners, I’ve struggled in the past to get my fuel gauge to work. The fuel gauge operates through variable resistance in a potentiometer or rheostat located in the sending unit which fits inside the fuel tank. Here’s a great source to help with your installation. Fuel Gauge Connection Repair

Gauge Operation Gauge Operation 2

As the float inside the tank moves up and down with the fuel level, a wiper moves over a coiled wire that provides a variation in resistance at different locations. If the tank is near empty, the wiper touches the coiled wire near its end. The electrons have a longer path to take through the sending unit, and thus have greater resistance, which then reduces the current that the gauge receives, and the gauge needle barely moves. If the float is towards the top of a full tank, then wiper in the sending unit touches the coiled path near its beginning, providing little resistance. The dash gauge thus receives nearly full current, moving the needle all the way over to full.

First off, make sure that the sending unit “matches” the gauge. Different sending units have a different range of operating resistance, in ohms, and the min and max resistance must match what the gauge is expecting. If you have an original gauge, then purchasing a proper sending unit from a reputable seller, such as Ron Fitzpatrick, should do the trick. Ron also offers a service where you can send him your gauge and he will test it with his sending units to see if there is a match.  For a 6V system, a full tank should offer a resistance of zero to one ohms. I’ve seen resistance numbers for an empty tank quoted as 80, 100, 120 and 130 ohms. Here’s an interesting G503 forum post on this.  Sending Unit Resistance.

You can test your sending unit yourself with a multimeter and 6V power supplied to the unit. Just ground out the body of the unit back to the battery and move the float arm, measuring ohms.

A few simple actions can give you a much better chance of having a working gauge. The most important thing you can do is ensure good grounds on installation. The fuel gauge itself must have a good ground. This is achieved by sanding the circumference of the hole in the dash board and ensuring that the exterior of the gauge is clean and shiny. Make sure that the gauge bracket is fully tightened so that the gauge seats and grounds.  Boltup 15 Fuel Gauge 1

The other connection that is critical is the grounding of the sending unit itself. While the unit likely grounds well on the fuel tank due to the retaining screws and star washers, it’s frequently the problem that the tank itself does not ground. This is due to thick paint, the use of felt anti-squeak pads underneath the tank, and welting under the tank straps that essentially isolates the tank. Like a lot of jeepers, my fix for this is simple: I run a separate ground wire from the sending unit to the tub, thus ensuring a good connection.  Sending Unit Ground

Finally, once you have a working gauge, you can adjust the reading by bending the sending unit arm upward or downward. In my most recent case, I put 4 gallons of fuel in the GPW but the gauge only read 1/8 of a tank. I bent the sending unit arm so that the arm moves higher, lowering the resistance, and increasing current. There’s a limit to this, however, as too much of a bend will cause the arm to hit the top of the tank when full. This can be annoying because the arm then rattles on the tank.

GPW First Drive

What a great week. GPW 270351 drove under her own power for the first time since December 2016. I drove about 15 miles (20k) on my neighborhood streets, with no speed above 30 mph (50 kph). She actually started right up after sitting for 16 months, and settled into a pretty good idle. The rpm is a bit high and she’ll need tuning. As happens when a new antique vehicle gets her first drive, you discover a lot.

I had no oil leaks except at the oil pressure gauge, with drips on the floor at the base of the accelerator pedal. Initially I had no other leaks or drips at all, and especially not at the manifold stud or rear of the head, which is what I was worried about. Over the course of the week I’ve developed a drip coming from the front oil pan bolts and I’ll need to dig deeper on what’s causing it.

The front hubs did get a bit hot, as I was concerned about. I had very little free play in the brake pedal, so I’ll cut back the large felt grommet to give me 1/2″.  I tightened up the clutch free play as well.

Interestingly, the spring on the heat riser valve was not allowing the arm to rise and close the flapper valve. I cut back the spring and positioned the tab at a different location and now it works fine.

The transmission seems to shift well, albeit a bit tight. That’s to be expected with a newly rebuilt box. After driving my ’67 Ford F250 farm truck for the last four years, with its gear shifter moving over a foot during shifts, I had to reacquaint myself with the short throw of the T84 shifter.

Steering is very tight, and actually a bit too hard to steer. Even with the front axle on jack stands the steering is tight. I checked the steering box but will have to have another look at the drag link ends. The likely cause is the king pin bearings in which the shims were set to factory specs. I imagine that everything will loosen up as I drive, but I’ll continue to keep an eye on her.

So, here’s how she sits after this week. Everything is mounted to the tub except the rear seat and crash pads. Time to finish up the fenders and grill, then get started on the hood.Rebuilding 4Rebuilding 1

MV Spares GPW Wiring Kit Review

I used a “complete” wiring kit from MV SPares for my GPW. It’s kit number A-2000C. I bought the kit directly from MV spares at an MVPA convention.

Overall I’m happy with the product, and I’d recommend it to a friend, but there are a few annoying omissions that make this kit anything but complete. 7 out of 10  would be my rating.

Here’s what I like: The wires are properly color coded and lacquered. They have a quality feel to them. Looms are cut to the correct lengths, are well-wrapped, and are individually bagged and labeled. The bullet connectors are well done and have a positive fit into both the provided female connectors and the originals that I saved from my old loom. Additionally, most of the loop connectors are correct and well sized.

Here’s what I don’t like:  First, there are quite a few omissions that would be simple to add/correct and would make the life of a restorer so much easier. These include:

Blackout lights. As I mentioned when restoring the blackout lights, there are a couple of omissions that are frustrating. The wires could easily have connector ends crimped on, or at least provide uncrimped ends in the kit. The rubber grommet stops and staples are also missing. See my more detailed explanation here:  Blackout Marker Lights Restoration

Blackout drive lights. Same thing, just too many omissions that would be so simple to fix.  First, there is no ground wire for the interior of the unit. Second, the wiring loom connector is incorrect; it is supposed to be an open spade connector. Finally, MV Spares has no crimped wiring stop built onto the loom. This is needed to prevent the wire from being pulled all of the way out of the light, and it acts somewhat as a seal to keep mud and dirt out of the light.  Blackout Drive Light Restoration

Better instructions. Most of their competitors’ kits come with a full description of the wiring process, color coded, with photos. Unfortunately MV Spares only comes with a brief tag telling where the connections are. I emailed MV Spares, hoping that my kit simply had the instructions missing. I was told to simply look up the diagrams in the Master Parts list or TM-10-1186. Hmm, not helpful. I ended up using some great resources for wiring, but none of them provided by MV Spares.

In my kit, the wire that connects the horn to the six-post junction block was the wrong color. These should be black with two white tracers, but mine had two red tracers.

Finally, the blue wire on the main loom that powers the headlight dimmer switch, in conjunction with my original switch, is a tad too short. There were different manufacturers of dimmer switches, and the locations for the terminals varied. In my case, the power terminal is located up high, not leaving much slack.

Again, I’m relatively happy with the MV Spares wiring kit. I do think, though, that my next restoration will use a different kit. If anything, this will give me a better comparison.

Tub Mounting and Getting Ready for First Drive

This week has been a heck of a lot of fun. I got the tub mounted to the chassis and began the process of getting her ready for her first drive.

Mounting the tub was a cinch. We had seven of us lifting, a bit of overkill but it made for precise control and placement. The 14 body tub bolts all went in easily as well. I was happily surprised by this as the hat channels were replaced and the rear of the frame was surgically replaced, including the frame rails and rear crossmember.

Tub Installed 1

Isn’t the picture above funky? Look at the distortion making the engine angle strange.

Tub Installed 2

Tub Installed 3

One small problem was easily fixed. When I replaced the driver’s side hat channel it looks like I welded it too far inboard. It lightly touches the master cylinder. No worries as it was easy to jack up the body and use a flap disk on an angle grinder to remove a millimeter or two. Tub Installed 4

Bolted down and shift levers added.  Tub Installed 5

Overall the tub is a good fit, with only two areas I wish were better. First, the rear of the tub aligns with the rear crossmember on the outside, but overhangs above the pintle hook by 1/4 inch. Second, the brake and clutch pedals do not sit horizontally in the center of their holes. All in all, it’s workable, though.

Tub Installed 9

_Pedal Alignment

I got the steering system completed by tightening the steering box and adding the steering tube, floor seals, clamp, and wheel. The herringbone twill pad for the steering tube clamp is original.  _Steering Wheel

_Steering Wheel 2

Next, I finished up most of the wiring by connecting the foot starter switch to starter and battery cable, wiring up the horn, connecting the stop wires to the switch, wiring the coil, and adding the tail lights.  I also connected the oil gauge line, accelerator linkage, temperature gauge head, and choke and throttle cables._Wiring 3

_Wiring 4

_Wiring 1

_Wiring 2

_Horn 1

_Horn 2

Cables 1

Cables 2

Next came the fuel tank (with felt pads from Joe’s Moor Pool), straps, sending unit, wiring and fuel line.  I may add a separate grounding wire for the sending unit once I am able to test the unit. I’m really stoked that my late-war fuel line clips in so nicely. It’s clipped at four locations: two on the fender, one on the toe board gusset, and one at the hat channel location also used for the wiring loom._Fuel Tank 2

_Fuel Tank

_Fuel Line

I installed the brake and clutch pedals with felt seals and then adjusted the free play. The clutch is spot on at 3/4″ free play as per the TM. The brake pedal, though, is right at the end of it’s adjustment, and I only have about 1/4″ of free play rather than 1/2″. I’ll keep an eye on this for the first short drive by checking brake drum temperatures.  Adding the felt aligned the pedals in their holes vertically, but I’m still off horizontally. After all of the surgery, though, I’ll take it._Pedals

_Pedals 2

Next came the speedometer cable and firewall clip, as can be seen in the pics above.  I then worked on the emergency brake but I’m not happy with my original cable. Its internal friction is just too great for the return spring to overcome and I have a new one on order from Ron.  Finally I got the grill and front seats painted and the seat cushions lightly scrubbed. Whew, time for a day off as cold concrete garage floors don’t play well with my old back. I’m looking forward to a drive next week!

 

WW2 Jeep First Drive Preparation List

At this point in my restoration, the body tub has been placed on the chassis. Here’s a list of the bolt-ons, connections and checks needed before first drive. This list assumes the engine is static timed.

 

Bolt down tub (14 bolts)

Wiring:

  • Foot starter switch to starter and battery cable (leave disconnected)
  • Horn wiring
  • Stop switch wires
  • Radio box ground to frame
  • Voltage Regulator
  • Generator
  • Coil
  • Fuel tank sending unit
  • Check power by briefly connecting the battery. Then, if OK, check all electricals

Steering – tighten steering box bolts, check all linkage, add steering tube, clamp, steering wheel and nut

Connect accelerator pedal and carburetor linkage

Connect choke and throttle cables to carburetor

Add brake and clutch pedals with felt seals, then adjust free play per the TMs

Connect and check oil pressure lines

Connect temp line to engine head and top off coolant

Connect speedometer cable and clamp to firewall

Connect emergency / parking brake cable and clamp to bell housing if boss is present

Check emergency brake adjustments

Add fuel tank, filter & fuel lines

Bolt on driver’s seat

Add tail light bulbs and doors

Check tire pressure

Check wheel bearings

Check and adjust wheel alignment

 

GPW Firewall Felt Grommets

Nothing makes a GPW restorer curse like a sailor quite like felt grommets. There are 11 grommets on a GPW: seven on the firewall, one in the driver’s side tool box, one on the driver’s side fender, and two on the engine. The firewall sockets can be extremely hard to install. These felts must be installed after the line or harness passes through them. If you install the felts too early the lines will not fit through the snug hole. The only exception to this the hole for the choke and throttle cable which can have the felt installed first.

I used MV Spares felt grommet set which I purchased from Ron, and it’s a very high quality item. I’m very happy with it.  Here’s the MV Spares kit literature.Boltup 24 Felt Instructions

Firewall Complete

On the firewall, from driver’s side to passenger’s side, the grommets are: , secondary harness (medium hole), main harness (large hole), choke / throttle cables (medium), oil pressure (small), speedometer (medium), temp gauge (small), coil / battery wire (medium).

One way to work these grommets is to put them over the wire or line, then begin at the split to catch an edge and rotate the grommet. This will only get you about 90 degrees of the way around. Then, using a dull-edged screw driver, continue to work your way around, pushing the interior portion of the felt past the firewall. Keep pushing the felt outwards, radially, to leave more room. Eventually you’ll get them. Be careful, though, not to scratch your newly painted tub. Been there, done that.

The two hardest felts to install are the small-holed ones for the temp and oil gauges. I take a drill out bore out the inner diameter as the MV Spare’s holes are just too small.

For the oil pressure gauge, it’s nearly impossible to install the felt once the gauge and oil line are on the jeep. This is because the oil line does not come straight out of the hole. Instead it comes through the hole laterally, like in the picture below. Oil Gauge Felt

The trick is to install the felt while the oil line is through the hole but not connected to the gauge itself. Here’s a picture below to illustrate this, with the oil line straight outwards and taped in place. After the felt is installed, the oil line is screwed into the back of the oil pressure gauge, then the gauge is installed.Boltup 24 Felt Oil

GPW Body Tub Preparation for Chassis Installation: Photos

In my last post I listed the items that I installed onto the body tub before placing the tub onto the chassis. Today I thought I’d show lots of pics of those items.

I started off with a bunch of bolt up items that can be hard to reach and that will need paint as part of the final touch up. These include the drain plugs, decontaminator screws, windshield hardware, vacuum hole plug, and body sill bolts. The drain plugs in particular were a pain to install as the jeep sat for 75 years with open holes and the threads were severely corroded. I used a 1/4 NPT tap and a lot of time and cutting oil to get them so that the plug sits deep and flush with the floor.Boltup 1 Vacuum Hole

Boltup 2 Sill Bolts

Boltup 2a Drain Plug

Boltup 3 Decontam Bolts

Boltup 4 Windshield Hooks

Boltup 8 Windshield Pivots

Next came the firewall pad, a bit mangled but nice and tight. This was followed by the emergency brake bracket, handle and cable. Boltup 5 Firewall Pad

Boltup 9 E Brake

I next started in with the electrical by installing the main rotary light switch. This was wired up off the jeep and then the harness was simply routed through the firewall. This is so much easier than first running the loom and trying to wire it up while under the dash.  I installed the main and secondary harness and the ammeter to power wire.Boltup 7 Main Switch 2

Boltup 7 Main Switch 3

Boltup 7 Main Switch 1

Next came the panel lights and switch. My original bullet connectors are a bit loose as a few of the tabs have broken off. I may need to purchase new ones.  These lights require a good ground, so be sure that the tabs are free of paint and shiny, and that paint is removed from the dash holes where the bullets mount.  Boltup 10 Panel Light Switch 1

Boltup 10 Panel Light Switch 2

Boltup 10 Panel Lights

Next I wired up the ammeter.Boltup 13 Ammeter 2

And then the ignition switch.

Boltup 14 Ign Switch 2

Boltup 14 Ign Switch 1

Next came the fuel gauge. Like the panel lights, a well-operating fuel gauge requires that there is a good ground for the gauge by removing the paint from the edge of the hole in the dash.  Also make sure the back of the gauge bezel is shiny metal.Boltup 15 Fuel Gauge 1

 

Boltup 15 Fuel Gauge 2

Next were the circuit breakers. Both CBs on late-war jeeps are 15 amp.  Boltup 16 Circuit Breaker

This was followed by the temp gauge, oil pressure gauge and speedometer, in that order. For the oil pressure gauge, be sure to install the felt firewall grommet while the oil line is inserted but not screwed onto the gauge. This will allow easier installation of the felt.  Boltup 17 Gauges

I then installed the first aid kit bracket. I’m glad I did it now as it was a bit fiddly after the welding repairs to the dash.  Here it is with my kit being test fit.Boltup 18 Med Kit Brkt

I then added the choke and throttle cables.  Not sure that I like the quality of the white-painted letters, but I can work with it. These can be fiddly as the pull handles want to rotate, like the throttle seen below. This twisting can be removed later when the cables are clamped to the carb.Boltup 19 Choke Throttle

Next came the headlight dimmer switch and foot starter switch, each with herringbone twill gasket.

Boltup 12 Dimmer Switch 1

Boltup 12 Dimmer Switch 2

Boltup 11 Starter Switch 1

Boltup 11 Starter Switch 2

I then installed the accelerator pedal leather boot and the pedal assembly. The leather can take some persuasion to get right. It’s so hard to do this if the tub is already on the chassis.Boltup 6 Boot a

Boltup 20 Accelerator Pedal

Next came the radio junction box, conduit and cable.  Boltup 22 Radio Box 2

Boltup 22 Radio Box 3

Boltup 22 Radio Box 1

Tail light buckets.

Boltup 25 Tail Light Buckets

Trailer socket and wiring. The socket is installed from inside the tool box, not from the outside. Make sure to have a good ground by removing paint from the tub on the inside location of the grounding wire. I put a star washer between the socket and tub as well as on the outside.Boltup 21 Trailer Socket 2

Boltup 21 Trailer Socket 1

Grab Handles. These will come in handy when moving the tub onto the chassis.Boltup 23 Grab Handle 1

Boltup 23 Grab Handle 2

Six-post junction block, then all wiring connected and clipped.

Wiring 1

Wiring 2

Air filter brackets. Boltup 26 Air Filter Bracket

Felt Grommets for firewall. There are seven on the firewall.  Boltup 24 Felt Left

Boltup 24 Felt Oil

Boltup 24 Felt Right

Boltup 24 Felt Coil

Finally, firewall mounted bond straps. On late-war ACM tubs, there is just a single stud which mounts the engine head bond strap and speedometer / temp gauge bond strap.  Bond Strap 1

Bond Strap 2

Here’s the firewall, all complete, and the tub is ready to place on the chassis.Firewall Complete

GPW Body Tub Preparation for Chassis Installation: Ordered List

The tub should have a lot of items installed before placement onto the chassis. This will save loads of time. Another plus is sitting on a stool wiring the inner dash is so much more comfortable than laying on your back inside the tub. You can find lists of what to install on the jeep forums, but here’s my ordered list of bolt-ons prior to fitting the tub to the chassis. Some of these items are simply placed now so that they get painted in the touch up re-spray. In my next post I’ll show pics of each of these.

Keep in mind that this is a late-war GPW and does not have the firewall fuel strainer. Also, on an MB you would need to add the six-post junction block as well as the horn and oil can brackets before adding the firewall pad. GPWs have captive nuts on the firewall and therefore these items can be installed later.

 

Decontaminator bolts, body sill bolts, floor drain plugs, vacuum wiper cowl plug (if installed)

Windshield dash-mounted hooks and cowl-mounted pivot brackets

Safety strap eye-loops

Firewall pad

Master light switch (completely wire first, off the tub)

Panel light switch and lights

Main and secondary wiring harness and six-post junction block on firewall

Ignition Switch

Starter switch

High beam switch

All under-dash wiring, including circuit breakers and filtrette

Gauges: do ammeter first, then fuel, temp, oil, and speedo last

Speedometer cable

Emergency brake bracket, handle and cable

Choke and throttle cables

Accelerator pedal and leather boot

First Aid Kit Bracket

Radio box,  conduit and cable

Rear light buckets and wiring

Trailer socket and wiring

All wiring clips

Air filter brackets

Firewall felt grommets

Firewall bond straps

Grab handles

 

Additionally, there are items on the chassis that should be installed and readied:

Transfer case lever pin  installed

Remove shifter and cover T-84 shift cane hole

Steering column outer tube off

Steering box to frame bolts loose

Brake and clutch pedals with maximum throw and pushed forward and tied

Check all fluids

Bleed brakes and adjust brake drum eccentrics

Adjust emergency brake

Torque manifolds and head