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Thread: Need help figuring out what this is?!?!? M38A1????

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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2022

    Need help figuring out what this is?!?!? M38A1????

    Hey Guys I am looking at buying what the seller says is a 1959 M38A1. From my research, it leaves me questioning that.
    He says its 24V so that makes sense but it doesn't have the plug on the front right fender? The serial # plate is gone.
    Is the serial # stamped on the frame somewhere?

    Any help would be appreciated266170914_4557504814327407_6333628234565377833_n.jpg267943198_4557504847660737_372978887191507704_n.jpg267589852_4557504780994077_5692348487323190016_n.jpg265826114_4557504807660741_5040783736323250442_n.jpg267589852_4557504850994070_2486149360448303044_n.jpg

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    E OK
    It doesn’t look like the M38A1 had number stamped into the frame.
    '51 CJ3A
    '47 CJ2A

  3. #3
    Super Moderator LarrBeard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Ft. Wayne, IN
    It may have started out as an M38A1, but it has had a LOT of modifications. The shielded ignition is a strong indicator that it had some M38A1 connection at some time, but:

    I would suggest that you Google TM9-8014 which will give you a lot of pictures of an M38A1 in just about any detail you want.

    Here are some observations:

    A. Instrument panel has been heavily modified

    B. Roll bar added

    C. Seats replaced

    D. Windshield does not fold down

    E. Only one wiper - M38A1 had two

    F. I can't see the generator regulator on the left side of the engine - it should be a black box with two connectored cables if it is still a 24-volt system.

    G. Power connector could have been removed in body rework.

    H. Does it have fording valve and fording plumbing lines?

    If it is an M38A1, it has had enough modifications to make it look a lot like a CJ.

    Look over TM9-8014 and make your decision from that, but your questioning is certainly warranted.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Northwestern Ohio
    TM9-8014 is available in the Tech Library on this forum, along with the rest of the manuals required for the Military Jeep.


    The first thing to look for is the machine gun mount which is part of the frame. Look underneath it is behind the seats and part of the frame. If there isnt a machine gun mount in the frame, it is not a M38A1.
    Last edited by bmorgil; 01-07-2022 at 05:11 PM.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator gmwillys's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Welcome TerryH,

    There is a whole lot going on on this Jeep. The grill with the hinges at the bottom are from the early production (52-53) models of the M38A1. The grill has later CJ5 turn lights instead of the military "cat eye" marker lights. The tub looks to be a reproduction tub, or the passenger side cowl indent was replaced with a patch panel. The dash panel is military, but of course a radio was cut out. As LarrBeard pointed out, there should be a shelf on the passenger side frame rail, just aft of the fender well in the engine bay for the voltage regulator. From the photo I do not see any evidence of the shelf. As Bmorgil also stated, all M38A1's had the machine gun mount welded to the frame cross member just in front of the rear axle.

    Would it scare me away from purchasing, that all depends on the price.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator bmorgil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Northwestern Ohio
    gm is the man!

  7. #7
    Member Gizzard's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2021
    Pin Oak Farms, Texas
    Definitely not a m38a1.

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