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Thread: Finally a member here!

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    May 2021
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    Finally a member here!

    Hey all,
    Well I've been lurking here for quite awhile now and figured I should finally sign up since I have just purchased my first willys.
    I just got a 1955 Willys wagon 4x4, flathead 6 (pics below if I can figure it out).
    Of course I have managed to already break it so expect to see me in the help section very soon, but I am super excited about my new truck!
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
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    Dec 2018
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    Northwestern Ohio
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    Oh its a beauty! Welcome VT!

  3. #3
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
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    Aug 2017
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    Alabama
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    Welcome VTWilly! Glad you chose to join us.

    Your '55 is a nice example and I like the use of the Maverick paint spear to break up the red.
    We look forward to helping out where needed.

  4. #4
    Senior Member 5JeepsAz's Avatar
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    Aug 2019
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    Love the color scheme! Welcome on in.

  5. #5
    Senior Member TJones's Avatar
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    Apr 2018
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    Akron, Ohio
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    Welcome VT
    That thing is spotless from the pictures, where in the world did you find that beauty??
    If you broke something you came to the right place!!!
    Between bmorgil, gmwillys and Larrbeard they can guide you through any repair big or small!!!

  6. #6
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    Ft. Wayne, IN
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    OK - What did you break?

    Quote Originally Posted by VTWilly View Post
    Hey all,
    Well I've been lurking here for quite awhile now and figured I should finally sign up since I have just purchased my first willys.
    I just got a 1955 Willys wagon 4x4, flathead 6 (pics below if I can figure it out).
    Of course I have managed to already break it so expect to see me in the help section very soon, but I am super excited about my new truck!
    \

    We saw the teaser - now you need to tell us what you broke.

    Nobody laughs because we've been there, done that and have scars and t-shirts to prove it.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    May 2021
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    Quote Originally Posted by LarrBeard View Post
    \

    We saw the teaser - now you need to tell us what you broke.
    Ok, well, now that I have poked around, it's not as horrible as I worried it was.. I think.
    So, the story goes, I was driving it home for the first time. Drove for about 45 min, stopped and got gas, drove another half hour or so, stopped for lunch. Got back in, started it up, backed out of the parking spot and it completely died. 3+ hours from home. On second thought the long drive home was pretty optimistic, but since this will hopefully be my daily driver, a shake down ride wasn't a bad idea. Anyway, so we tried to jump start it figuring maybe a charging/battery issue (I am quite competent under the hood, with electrical being my major weakness). So after a few tries of it only running for 60 to 90 seconds at a go I noticed that the analog clock on the dash wasn't getting power, and that when it magically did get power back, the truck ran fine, until everything died again 60 seconds later.
    So I got a u-haul and towed it home and what was supposed to be a 10 hour day, turned into an 18 hour day.

    Yesterday I cleaned and re-seated all the connections under the hood and made sure I had good ground connections. I learned that whoever half re-wired the vehicle was nice enough to leave no more that half a millimeter of slack on all the wires.
    When nothing else worked, my father-in-law suggested breaking out the multi-meter and checking power, everywhere. When checking power at the back of the ignition switch I got power back to the cab. Once I pulled the switch out of the dash, I let it hang (on the massive amount of slack I didn't have) and everything worked fine, I ran it up and down the road a few times, and the one time it died, I just fiddled with the back of the switch and it came all back up.
    So I ran to Napa (probably now my new best friends) and got another switch and I am going to swap it later today to see what happens. If everything works out I will probably order the replacement from KW just so I know I have the exact correct one, but this one appears identical to the one already in there.

    So that is the story of my first few days of owning my Willy's, hopefully it's all looking up from here!

  8. #8
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
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    Nov 2014
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    [QUOTE=I am quite competent under the hood, with electrical being my major weakness[/QUOTE]

    One constant about old Jeeps and old airplanes is that they will regularly disappoint you - until you get things sort of under control.

    Electrical intermittents can drive you crazy, especially if it's a rewire job. Improperly crimped terminal lugs are notorious for being intermittent. Just wiggle everything and watch to see where things quit working.

    I noticed a terminal block on the firewall that didn't look stock, so maybe some wires start there and won't be too hard to replace if you decide to add some service slack.

    And - you didn't break it - it just quit working; there is a difference. But it will be a good story; "When I was bringing the Jeep home ... ".

  9. #9
    Junior Member
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    May 2021
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    Ok, it's true, intermittent electrical issues suck.
    But.. Pretty sure I got it ironed all out. So, the power was routed from the battery side of the starter solenoid (bolted to the fender near the battery) into a wireloom, into the cab, under the dash and then out the firewall and to the input of that fuse block. As far as I could tell, there isn't anywhere that it splits to power other items. There is however a butt connector about half way down so I am guessing that when they added the fuse block, they just extended the original power line back out to the fuse block. Seems like that might have been the weak point in the system.

    So, I disconnected both ends of that cable, and then just ran a 10 gauge cable from the battery directly to the fuse block. I left the old wire where it was but electrical taped up both ends, just in case I need it.
    Anyway after that I tried to start it and it blew the 20a fuse that leads to the battery side of the ignition switch, after putting in a new 20a fuse, everything appears to be working fine, all the gauges work and we took it for a ride around the neighborhood without issue.

    Anyone have anything that they think that I am missing? Could there have been something off that cable that I needed? After seeing how it was all wired with the new gauges and all (I have a section that has 6 white wires that turns into 2 white wires that turns into 1 green wire) I already know that I want to re-wire the whole deal, but I would like to put that off until at least next year.

    Thanks all, I am so glad I joined here, already been worth the price of admission.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    248
    Soldered joints are a terrible pain when they go bad. I have had 2 cars and one airplane with bad electrical issues that went away when I replaced all of the soldered joints with proper crimps.
    Jeff
    '51 CJ3A
    '47 CJ2A

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