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Thread: New guy from New Mexico

  1. #1
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    New guy from New Mexico

    Just bought a Kaiser Willys pickup. We were driving down the road outside Dalhart Texas and saw it sitting there with a for sale sign on it. My current wife (47 years) said I want that Truck. We went back and looked it over and made a deal on it. The guy said it was a 1947 but from what I can figure it is a 51 or 52. We need to find a serial number and nail the year down. . No Title so I got it pretty cheap.
    We were hauling cattle home so we traded trailers and drove back after it the next day.

    We will strip it down and do a complete rebuild/restoration. Its not bad as far as body condition goes.
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Welcome! Nice truck! The wife has a good eye. LarrBeard will probably nail the year right down for you. He may want a few more pic's..

  3. #3
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    Looks like a lot of potential there. You can get a lot of good information from the guys here.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Welcome Pops52! Great find! Your Wife has good taste!

  5. #5
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    It looks like you found a winner there!

    And, that is a pretty nice truck on the trailer.

    When you count grill bars, you count the ones at top and bottom, as well as the ones in the middle. The five-bar grill sets it as no later than 1952 (unless it was one of those "Willys-Overland would never have ..." vehicles.) In 1950 the front end went "pointed", so it is between '50 and 52. A true '53 would be a pointed three bar grill.

    A '50 truck serial number would start with 4WD (4-wheel drive). A 51 or 52 would start with 451 EC1 (4WD Model 473 pickup). If you find a number, we'll dig to find out just when it was built. The serial plate will be in the engine compartment, on the firewall, just in front of the driver's left knee. It isn't stamped in some secret place on the frame or anywhere else - no plate, you have a mystery.

    Depending on how ornery your state DMV is, a title for a truck that old can be easy or a real PITA

    Don't believe any engine numbers as anything but the roughest estimate of anything.

    Good luck and keep us informed.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    The serial number on the frame is in front of the passenger side front shock, on the top rail of the frame. This is hidden until the fender is removed, and you remove the paint that clogs up the stamping.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    Serial Number on Frame

    Quote Originally Posted by gmwillys View Post
    The serial number on the frame is in front of the passenger side front shock, on the top rail of the frame. This is hidden until the fender is removed, and you remove the paint that clogs up the stamping.
    I don't know when Willys-Overland started stamping the serial number there. When I had the '48 torn down to nothing, we looked at that area for the serial number and there was nothing there. The area was fairly clean, not rusted over or corroded out ... there was nothing there.

    Hopefully it will be there on the later trucks - they may have started stamping there when they moved over to the new serial numbering system in '51.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the replies guys.
    I seem to be attracted to old trucks with no ID plates in place. The '47 Dodge I built was the same situation. It's not a huge deal in
    New Mexico. Just a bit of a hassle going through the process of getting a new VIN number assigned.

    I got a new hip for Christmas so I'm still gimping around and not causing as much trouble as I usually do. It will be a couple more months before I can really get into this project with my bride. I told her I'd get started as soon as she got the seat out of it and removed all the critters and their droppings. Then we will strip it down and check the frame for #s stamped in it. I'm not going to hold my breath tho. I'm not very lucky in that way..

    Here's a couple pics of my past projects since I quit getting paid for working.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  9. #9
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Oh man! I love em!

  10. #10
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    Hey! You are an old pro, looks like.

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