View Full Version : Ham's '48 - The Fourth Generation Steps Up

03-19-2018, 02:04 PM
This year’s theme for the Kaiser-Willys Catalog is “Handing Down the Jewels - Willys Redefines the Family Heirloom.” The cover shows a couple of youngsters having a great time in a CJ-3B with markings honouring their Great-grandfather – a fourth generation heirloom.

I learned to drive in Ham’s ’48 (my father’s truck) when I was about 12 or 13. My daughters did not get to drive it when they were teenagers because it was too far gone for them to safely handle. Now, jump forward to the next generation.

Last summer my grandson, still not old enough to get his learner’s permit asks “Grandpa, can I drive your truck”. The answer was “Of Course!”

Since his mother would not let me take him out on the road (kids!), we spent the afternoon learning how to start it (accelerator, choke, starter), getting it into gear and working the clutch (the what?) and learning that with this particular transmission you have to go almost into reverse then come back down and shoot up into second or it gets mad and sulks.

After an hour or so, he could get into second, stop, back up and repeat! This summer – out on the road.

I did the math on my fingers, and this is a fourth generation truck. Oh, by the way – my daughter who won’t admit she’s turning 45 this year likes to take it out on the road. It’s never too late to get started.

03-20-2018, 06:48 AM
It's good to start them young. Mastering the operation of a Willys will lead to a respect for anything mechanical. Learning all the quirks of a 70 year old vehicle will put a lot of life's problems into perspective. It helps to prioritize issues into an orderly sequence, on the road of life. You must do things in order before you can move on to the next step, if not, you have to start over and try again.

03-20-2018, 12:21 PM
[QUOTE Mastering the operation of a Willys will lead to a respect for anything mechanical.

Besides all of that, he's young, tall and limber. He can reach places i have trouble getting to! Cheap teen age labor.

03-21-2018, 04:31 AM
I hear you. I had my daughter out when she was two, learning the basics of being a gopher, (go for). Now that she is a teenager, once I get her out of the house, she will work. She has mastered the push mower, and can run the hydrostatic lawn tractor, but last week she got some experience on the old John Deere gear drive lawn tractor. She did rather well considering the extra clutch pedal. Some time this fall, I believe she may be ready for the Jeep, in a big open field.