View Full Version : Restoring Ham's '48 Willys - Lots Got Done

05-19-2015, 07:23 AM
The last week or so has gone well. As we went, a lot of little tasks were done and set aside until we needed a part or an assembly and that preparation is starting to show results. When we're ready for something, it's there on the shelf (somewhere...).

Lots of chassis work is getting done, I'd guess 75% complete. The drive line went back together, new fuel tank mounted and lots of work routing fuel, oil and vacuum lines around the engine. As we worked around the chassis, we noticed an interesting wear pattern on the chassis and it took a minute to figure it out. The original rubber mounts under the cab had dried up, cracked and fallen out and that let the front end metalwork fall down and ride on the frame. Over the years the inner fenders had cut through a couple of rivet heads and worn a channel in the frame.

I decided to install a fiberglass fuel tank for the rebuild. Deep in my heart I wanted metal, like the original, but for a vehicle that sits a lot - metal will rust and I don't want fuel system problems every spring when I take the beast out of storage. Rigging the filler neck will take a bit of doing - the replacement isn't an exact match.

At the other end, rigging the radiator will also take some doing. The radiator on the '48 is a bottom mount. Using the old radiator wasn't a choice, it's too clogged and corroded. The only bottom mount available is for a CJ series (a bit smaller) and, so we're going to have to use a different fan shroud and that will take some rigging and modifying. I worried a bit about the CJ radiator cooling a truck - then I thought Duhhh - it's the same engine dummy!

Then - on Monday the cab came off the rotisserie (holding frame) and went onto the body. It took four healthy guys and me to "supervise", but it went right on and all four brackets matched right up. The holding frame did its job - the cab didn't warp during the sheet metal work. It's starting to look like a truck again.

A lot of pictures get posted this week. I can only post five photos per thread, so I'll post a couple of threads with just pictures.