Craig & Carina's 1950 Willys Overland Jeepster - 1950 Jeepster


The All American

1950 Willys Overland


Jeepster

161 ci (2.6 L) - L161 Lightning 6

6 Cylinder,  3 Speed w/ Over Drive

(The story reads from the bottom up)
August 25, 2010

The Jeepster hasn't moved in over a month, but Gary sure has been.  The Jeepster looks fantastic.  The doors are getting straightened; Gary found that the doors had been repaired once before, but it was very poorly done.  So he's cutting out the bad pieces of metal and fiberglass... ?  Why is there fiberglass and cloth in my door? 

It feels good that he's going to repair them the right way.  Not only will they look good, but they'll be much safer too!  Can't wait to see how they'll shut alot better too.  Looking good Gary.


Gary was also working on a beautiful blue Model A.  It was amazing!  I hope the Jeepster looks as nice.
July 24, 2010

We went to Gary Coopers to check in on the Jeepster.  To our amazement Gary had the whole car torn apart.  I can't believe my eyes.  The Jeepster is in parts, much further than I ever thought was possible, and Gary was getting it ready to be painted.  The fenders were sitting by themselves, I can't believe the radiator was off, as well as the wiring was in pieces.  The poor doors are on their own for a while, and the bumpers were completely taken off.  I guess this paint job is actually going to happen.
July 24, 2010

We went to Gary Coopers to check in on the Jeepster.  To our amazement Gary had the whole car torn apart.  I can't believe my eyes.  The Jeepster is in parts, much further than I ever thought was possible, and Gary was getting it ready to be painted.  The fenders were sitting by themselves, I can't believe the radiator was off, as well as the wiring was in pieces.  The poor doors are on their own for a while, and the bumpers were completely taken off.  I guess this paint job is actually going to happen.
 July 4, 2010

Rode around in the Jeepster for a little bit this morning. In the early afternoon I took the Jeepster to Gary Coopers in order to get painted. Can't wait to see it with a fresh new paint job! It'll be a lot of work but it'll be so worth it.
 June 30, 2010

Changed the spark plugs to the correct ones, and what a world of difference. The spark plugs were the key to get the car running great! I can't believe the people before me used the wrong type of spark plugs, I would have never had guessed to check and make sure the spark plugs were the right type. So glad that was the issue, and the Jeepster runs like a champ!
 June 29, 2010

The Jeepster hasn't run very well for 2 weeks. I'm pretty sure it's a spark plug issue. I took the spark plugs off and they were fouled pretty horribly. I cleaned them, however it's still not running properly. I ordered new spark plugs from Advance Auto and they should be in later this afternoon. My father and I were looking up the correct spark plugs and found that the Champion H10C's that are in it, are not for automobiles. They're for chainsaws, atv's, lawnmowers and other lawn equipment. We looked up the correct spark plugs and those are the ones that I'm going to order from Advance Auto.
 June 12, 2010

Well it's the next day after the tour... and now the next milestone will be to get the car ready to be painted. I have a whole laundry list of things that I need to complete before the car is prepared for Gary.
  1. Wash the Jeepster.
  2. Install the new radio.
  3. Maybe install speakers and the usuable radio.
  4. Find the fog light holders and figure out how to install them.
  5. Figure out how to install the antennae.
  6. Find out how to install the spot light.
  7. Make sure Gary can still paint the Jeepster.
  8. Hit up a few more cruises before losing the car the rest of the summer.
 June 11, 2010 - Founders Tour Afterthoughts

The Jeepster ran fantastically. The Chevelle was a clutch for Tuesday, and it was great driving it around. We had so much fun, but the best part of the whole tour was the Jeepster finally get a chance to leave the comforts of Greensburg and bring me home every night. Also, I learned that what makes the tour so much fun is that everyone has a story, and if you have a little time to spend with a few people you can really learn a lot about cars, people, what's important in the hobby, and most importantly make some nice life long friends.

Thanks Dad for helping me with the Jeepster or it would have never had made it on the tour!
 June 11, 2010

It's Friday and this morning was the first day I haven't had to turn a wrench while on the tour. The Jeepster is looking great, I gave it a quick bath, and Carina's back in her seat. I drove over to my parents in order to meet up with them before the tour started. We hit a major milestone in the Jeepster when we pulled in my parents driveway. It was very fitting. We hit 1000.0 miles on the new engine.

We're touring much of Route 30 today. We went through Latrobe and onto the Loyalhanna Creek through the beautiful Loyalhanna Gorge. We passed Idlewild Park and went through Ligonier. We drove through Laghlintown and my favorite place the Pie Shoppe. We drove the whole way to Jennerstown on Route 30 to the Quecreek Mine rescue site that was a miracle in July of 2002. After leaving the Quecreek memorial we headed to the Flight 93 National Memorial. The car tour reserved car #93 for a permanent memorial dedicated to the crew and passengers of Flight 93. They were all in our hearts while we toured western Pennsylvania.

After leaving the Memorial we went through a whole field of Windmills. They were huge and we were as close as I have ever been to windmills. Then we were off to lunch in Johnstown. Ray came over after I was parking the car to check out the Jeepster and we started talking. Then we got in line for lunch and kept talking about Jeepsters and touring. He introduced me to Terry Bond, the National A.A.C.A President, and I learned that the next Founders Tour will be held in Winter Park, Florida. I was so excited. That's where Carina's father lives. Maybe we can find a way to attend next year's Founders Tour as well. I talked to Ray the whole way through getting our great looking lunches. I had an Arnold Palmer for a drink (50/50 lemonade/ice tea), I love when they're mixed just right.

After lunch we headed to an amazing collection of old gas pumps and 50's decor at Bill Bahorick's incredible collection. We took many fun filled photo's while there and I found an old video game... I was in love. It looked like a brand new arcade game of Ms. Pacman from 1981... It was a year older than me. I had to play it. So I sat down and started to grow a crowd around me. I completed 5 levels of Pacman and I could have stayed there for hours playing the virtually new machine. Wow was it amazingly fun. I loved his whole collection. Wayne, Carina, and I posed all over the place using his decorations as props.

Then we headed for our last scheduled stop of the entire tour... Fort Ligonier. I've lived in Greensburg for almost all of my life, except for when I lived in Scranton for 5 years. I've never visited Fort Ligonier. It was fantastic. So much history, so little time. I actually got to see George Washington's saddle pistols that helped win the American Revolutionary War.

As an added treat we headed east to my favorite ice cream stop, Peaches 'n Cream. Dave has always taken great care of my creamery delights. His ice cream is simply the best. From there we headed home to get ready for the farewell dinner at the Sheraton.

The dinner was nice, we sat next to Beverly and Mac Wilson that were driving the 1936 International Station Wagon. They were a fun couple, and I talked to Mac a lot about the antique car hobby. Everyone seemed to have a good time. The entertainment was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. Carina wasn't feeling well, I think she was getting very tired, so we decided to leave after they announced the Chinese auction winners. To our delight we won a basket filled with a nice arrangement donated by Tom and Dodie Ulishney.

I said my good byes and warm wishes to safe travels to everyone I met while on the tour. Talked to Harvey a little bit, and realized that this great adventure was just about over. I had such a great time, I'm glad I got to enjoy myself on this little vacation to Greensburg, PA and the surrounding Western Pennsylvania.
 June 10, 2010

Today I woke up early and took the Jeepster over to Hills City Service in Greensburg to get the front end aligned. It took them a little while, but they did a great job. They had me out of there in little under an hour. I was just happy they were able to complete the alignment for me on such short notice. Carina was unable to go on tour with me today because she is taking a final exam tonight for her class. So I invited Joe Ott to join me on today's tour. He loves antique cars and I think he'll truly appreciate going on the tour as my navigator.

We drove around Twin Lakes Park, through Hannastown, crossed over Beaver Run Reservoir, and to New Kensington for a coffee stop. The cookies and coffee were great! Then we stopped at the Winfield Winery, where I purchased many great raspberry wines for Carina as a gift to her since she wasn't able to join us on the tour today. We drove through more Amish Country and saw some beautiful sites. We had lunch in Grove City at the Outlets and I purchased a much needed new Penn State hat to keep the sun off of my face. The Jeepster ran great all day. We went through McConnell's Mill State Park and took some pictures of the Jeepster going through a covered bridge. We then made it to our next destination, the Hawn & Woodward Auto Restoration shop. Some the cars were amazing.

Then my favorite part of the whole tour was to see Dave and Karen Berg's collection of antique cars and automobilia. Very amazing. I feel bad Carina had to miss this. Dave's and Karen's collection is just amazing! They are such nice people as well. They explained the cars and treated us all as if we were family. I thank them very much for allowing us to view their unique collection.

Then we were on our way home! Joe and I talked about stopping at the Lamplighter in Delmont to check out their Cruise. And we did. It was an amazing sight of beautiful cars. I had much more fun at this cruise than I did over at the Pepperwood Grill a few nights before. Everyone was friendly and a few people really took an interest in the Jeepster. They were surprised to find an original 6 cylinder Jeepster on the road with everything else all original. I talked to them for about an hour, then went and checked out the other cars at the cruise as well. Some of the people on the tour with us were also at the cruise. Joe and I stayed for about an hour and a half, then we went back to the Sheraton to check out the cars sitting in the parking lot.

Joe's parents and brother Roy met us up at the Sheraton and we went around looking at the cars together. It's amazing to see some of these cars sitting in a parking lot here in Greensburg. That's when I met Ray Fischer from Somerset, NJ. I used to work at the MetLife office on Davidson Avenue in Somerset, NJ, and I guess that's extremely close to where Ray lives. I was admiring his 1952 Ford Custom when we started talking. Eventually I mentioned that I was driving the Jeepster and to my surprise, he used to own one. That put a huge smile on my face. We talked for a while about the Jeepster and he quizzed me about mine. He said that it sounds like to him that it's really an original Jeepster. He actually knew Morris Ratner, the "Jeepster Man", personally. He said that his first antique car was a Jeepster and he started restoring things here and there on it, and his wife really liked the car a lot. They took it to a national show in 1981 and he said he wasn't looking to win any awards or anything, he just wanted to take it to the show. Well it turns out that he actually won his first Junior award with the little Jeepster. He said it was sitting next to a very beautiful '51 or '52 Lincoln. He didn't understand the judging rules at the time, but he explained to me how all the judging was completed. I told him that it would be an amazing feat just to be able to have the Jeepster on a national show field. We talked for about an hour and half about his Jeepster and all the fun he used to have in it. Really a nice man. Actually, everyone I've met so far on the tour have been really nice people. Ray said he wanted to check out my Jeepster some time tomorrow. It was a pleasure to meet him.

I didn't get home until 10:15 that night with the Jeepster, but I had an awesome day. Thank you Joe for being the Jeepster's navigator.
 June 9, 2010

Well today is an off day for all old cars. We took a bus ride into Pittsburgh to visit the Pittsburgh Zoo and Aquarium, Duquesne Incline, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, and the Frick Transportation Museum, Fine Arts, and Clayton the Frick family home (mansion). It was a fun filled day packed with excitement. I really enjoyed this all day.

Smitty's was able to put the new tires on the rims for me while we were in Pittsburgh and I picked up them up that night when we got back. I put the new tires on the front end and put the spare tire back on the back. Tomorrow the Jeepster is getting a front end alignment and hopefully these tires last longer.
 June 8, 2010

I didn't get to bring the Jeepster today, because the tires are just too worn out. I did drive over to Hill's City Service in Greensburg, PA to see if they could complete a front end alignment for me, however they were just too busy. So, I made an appointment for first thing Thursday morning. I drove home, prepared the '77 Chevelle for the tour and away we went.

We primarily toured through Fayette County today. It was nice. We stopped in Kecksburg to see all the memorabilia surrounding the Kecksburg UFO, and to see the UFO replica. Carina and I bought an amazing pepperoni roll from the Country Pie Shoppe & Old General Store. It was delicious. Then it was off to Fort Necessity National Battlefield, which by all means was the start of the French and Indian War. Also, noteworthy, it was the battle that George Washington surrendered to the French.

Then we were off to the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. We had lunch at the Wild Side. It too was delicious. Then we toured the resort and looked at all of the animals.'

Our next stop was the Laurel Caverns. It is an amazing attraction and from up on the mountain you can see right into downtown Pittsburgh, some 60 miles away. We could make out the USX building off in the distance.

There was supposed to be a few more stops and sites along the way, however, both the Chevelle's brakes and the '57's brakes were hot. So we decided to take a break at a florist shop near Uniontown.

They were having a Car Cruise tonight at the Pepperwood Grill in Greensburg. So I rushed home and got the Jeepster ready to go over to the cruise. I needed to change the front passenger side tire, because it was not safe to drive on any more. I'm surprised it got me home yesterday. Unfortunately, dad had the tire iron in his '57 Chevy, so I had to go to Advance Auto to buy one. I bought one, came home, and all of the sockets on the four way were too big to fit the Jeepster. So I ran back out to Auto Zone and they had a little bit smaller one, but it was a perfect fit. I hurriedly changed the tires and we were off to the cruise. We were late, but there were still a few cruisers. The food was really good. And most importantly, the Jeepster ran great and got us home safe.

The great news of the day is that my tires from Diamondback came in today. They were delivered to my parents' house, but they were delivered. I'm having them mounted and balanced tomorrow at Smitty's Auto Service down the road and should be able to put the new tires on the Jeepster tomorrow.
 June 7, 2010

What a Wonderful Day! I woke up and painted the air filter, this is the last chance for it to look nice for the tour. The humidity levels are much lower so I don't believe there will be any issues this time. The Jeepster made it to it's first ever National Tour, and I made it to my second. I went on the Founders Tour 10 years ago. We arrived early morning at the Four Points Sheraton in Greensburg and got our pictures taken as soon as we got there.

Our first stop! The hospitality room with all the cookies and drinks! Awesome cookies!

Then we were truly off and running on our first day. We stopped at a taxidermy shop that totally blew my mind. The World Class Animal Artistry in Crabtree. I never knew it existed and while traveling back and forth between Scranton and Greensburg Pennsylvania while working for MetLife, I never noticed it. The taxidermy has won multiple world competitions for their work. The place was awesome!

Next we went to a restoration stop for the most awesome breakfast of the tour so far! It was also the first breakfast on the tour so far! It was delicious! Sausage, egg, and bagel breakfast! We went to the Westmoreland Antique Car Restoration shop and it was beautiful. I really enjoyed looking around all of their cars, and it was the first stop that we were able to see everyone else's cars on the tour. The amazing cars that we got to eat breakfast with, were amazing too! There was a 1957 Kaiser that was a beautiful mint green color. It sat much lower than the Jeepster, but it almost looked like a Corvette, but much cooler.  I really liked it and I have never seen one before.  Actually there were many cars on the tour that I had never seen before too! One of my favorites was a 1936 Woody International Station Wagon. I loved it. Although, I could name probably 1/2 the cars as cars that I would have loved to have had the opportunity to go for a ride in.

Our next stop was the Jimmy Stewart Museum in Indiana, PA. We had such a good time there, however there weren't any pictures allowed in the museum. However, my brother did take Harvey's and Jimmy Stewart's picture just outside of the museum's doors. After the museum we headed towards Amish Country in Smicksburg, PA.  We stopped at many Amish furniture stores and found a place that I know Carina will be taking me to again in the future. Our lunch was delicious as we ate at one of the restaurants in Smicksburg. Everything had that homemade quality and deliciousness, but the prices were really low.

Our final tour stop of the day was a visit to the Wingate Winery. We purchased a few bottles of wine for later. Carina also found some antique Disney comic books, and we just had to buy them. One of the comic books was about nuclear power, and since that's what Carina does... she can't wait to bring it in and show her work buddies her find. And then we were on our way home. When we arrived back at the Sheraton, my dad noticed that our front passenger tire had completely worn through the second layer of rubber. Tomorrow is not looking like a good Jeepster day. Hopefully my new tires from Diamondback come soon so the Jeepster can continue the tour.
 June 6, 2010

Lots of work to get done today in order for us to use the Jeepster on the A.A.C.A's Founder's Tour tomorrow! It will be a long day. Luckily we have dinner starting at 6:00 up at the Sheraton!

Only unfortunate work to note is that I tried to paint the air filter once again and the paint blushed because of the high humidity. Tomorrow morning is going to be the last chance I have for it to be painted nicely.

When we got home from the opening kick off party, I put a little surprise in the back seat for my Disney fanatic navigator. She'll be thrilled in the morning.
 June 5, 2010

Today turned from all frowns to all smiles by the end of the day. We checked all the fluids to see if any needed topped off. And I wanted to adjust the brakes today before we went much further. I've been noticing that I've needed to push the brake peddle down as far as it would go and it still takes a while to stop us. So everything went smoothly adjusting all the brakes till we got to the rear passenger side. It was leaking something from the brake area. We took the tire off and started to try to take off the hub and drum and it wouldn't come off. I mean, it would not even loosen. We went to Advance Auto in Jeannette to barrow a drum puller. Dad used all kinds of force trying to loosen it up and it just would not come off. We had a great suspicion that our issue was with the brake cylinder and we found some part numbers and were delighted to find out that Advance Auto had them. They had to be shipped from Tennessee, but they will be in tomorrow! Awesome! I love how some things just work out in our favor. We then went back to work on trying to get the drum off of the rear axle. An hour later, a broken screw driver, and several failed attempts we decided to call Tom and see if he had any ideas. We then called Jimmy to see if we could use Tom's brother's heavy duty drum puller. Jimmy's son Travis brought it over and we were all set. It was much more substantial than the one we received from Advanced Auto. It worked like a charm! After we got the drum off, after much studying the pictures we learned that our leaking issue was not with the brake cylinder, it was most certainly coming from the rear axle seal.

We weren't quite sure what to do. We called Jimmy back to see if he was available to stop by and confirm that it was the seal leaking. He offered to stop by on his way to do some shopping and we started looking for a replacement part. Both Walcks and Kaiser had the part listed on their web site, however I needed one now. Advance Auto didn't have one in stock but they could order me one and it would be in on Tuesday. Then we tried NAPA and they amazingly had one in stock! Well not just one, but two!! So, Tom and I headed off to NAPA to make a few purchases. We got back just when Jimmy was arriving and he confirmed that it was definitely the rear axle seal. He also commented that I had a nice Dana rear axle. He was very impressed that it was military grade. Anyways, he dug right in, and started taking things apart. Next thing I knew my whole passenger side rear axle was apart, and most definitely it was the rear passenger side oil seal. Jimmy worked real hard to get it out. After he got it out, we found out that it was the original felt seal that was put into the car when it was built back in 1950. Kinda cool, but the new rubber seal is going to work so much better.

Jimmy had some shopping to do, and he came back in a few hours and helped put the seal back in along with the rest of the axle up to the brake pads. We're going to try to get new brake pads tomorrow and put them in.

I finished off the day by trying to paint the air filter black once again, however it was too humid and it gave the paint a nice hazy look. Who knew?
 June 4, 2010

P & R Engine Rebuilders in Greensburg are incredible! Highly recommended! They called at 10:30 a.m. and said that the kingpins and arm steering knuckler were complete! Awesome news! So I ran over there around noon and chatted with the guys over there for a while. It was exciting telling them all about how great the Jeepster was running. Top notch engine repair. I picked up a few parts for my dad's '57 Chevy at NAPA and then waited for him to come home to start putting the parts back on the Jeepster. Each one took about an hour to put back on, then we decided to wait till tomorrow to start doing our own inspection of the Jeepster and adjust the brakes. The shop book that I have said to bleed the brakes after changing the kingpins. A good idea anyway since I want it to be safe for the car tour starting Monday!
 June 3, 2010

Bought this incredible Purple Power to clean the kingpins and arm, steering knuckles. Wow, is all I have to say. Instead of chiseling off the gunk that was on them, all I needed to do was wipe it away with a paper towel. With all the gunk on them, I didn't even know that one of them was welded (very poorly, I will get this fixed over winter). And there's parts numbers. I love seeing the old part numbers. I think it's just incredible that these are 60 years old and I'm back to metal again.

The kingpin replacement parts arrived from UPS at around 12:30 in the afternoon. The driver actually stayed a while and checked out the Jeepster. He was so excited that he was bringing me parts in order to restore it. We talked a little bit and we discovered that I started working there a month before he started. We never met because he was on midnight shift and I worked on twilight shift. Good conversation and he loved the Jeepster. Although, I haven't met anyone that it hasn't caught their eye a little bit.

After the UPS delivery guy left, I packed my kingpins, arm, steering knuckles, and new parts over to Greensburg Machine and Driveline. They told me that they were backed up and couldn't get them to me for a week or two. I was a little upset about this, and the guy could tell very quickly that he did not have a happy potential customer. I talked to them on Tuesday and they said to bring them in any day this week and they'll be be able to complete them by the next day. So, I was out of luck with them real quick. I need the Jeepster running great for the beginning of the A.A.C.A.'s Founders Tour that we're going on next week. I asked him if he knew of any other places that might be willing to fix my parts, and he said to try P & R Engine Rebuilders in Greensburg. As soon as he said that, a huge smile came over my face. I didn't even think that P & R would even be willing to do this kind of work. They're the company that rebuilt the engine for me, and I would recommend them to anyone, they are really top notch.

So I called and talked to one of their guys and he said that he could probably rebuild the kingpins and arm, steering knuckles for me. We talked a little bit, then I told him of my dilemma of having them rebuilt in order to have time to put them back on the car in preparation for the tour. He only had one question for me, "How's the engine running?" Of course, I went on and on how great it is. It has never run this great since I have owned it. All kinds of power, just incredible. Then he said that if he thought that he could rebuild them, that he would have them completed tomorrow, and if not tomorrow, he'd have them done Saturday morning for me. They're not usually working on Saturdays, but he would make this exception for me. I can't wait to take him for a ride in the Jeepster once it's all completed.

So I showed him the parts I had and he said no problem. Call me back at 2:00 p.m. to see if they're getting done tomorrow or Saturday. He's just too nice!

When I got home I continued to clean the gunk off of some of the linkage and inner wheel parts.
 June 2, 2010

Bought cleaner / degreaser in order to clean the kingpins and arm, steering knuckle pieces of the gunk that I chiseled off the frame of the car. It's called Purple Power and it's industrial strength. After using it, it seems to be working, however, I'm using it undiluted and it literally ate through layers of skin. I don't think I have finger prints right now and it kind of burned a little. Next time I'll use rubber gloves.

I put the Purple Power in a bucket and kingpin and arm, steering knuckle are soaking in it over night. We'll see how clean they get when I wake up.
 June 1, 2010

Took the Jeepster to Hill's City Services in Greensburg, PA in order to get a front end wheel alignment. It ran fantastically getting over to there. Unfortunately when they put the Jeepster up on the racks, they said that my arm, steering knuckle bushings were too worn out or missing in order to complete the alignment. So, the Jeepster is still out of alignment and it's still wearing out my new tires from Diamond Back Classic Radials. So, I drove it home, just beating the rain storm.

I called Carl at Walcks to order a kingpin rebuild kit.  He said no problem and that I would have it in two days. He emailed me the UPS shipping information so that I could track it, so all is good again.

I called Diamond Back Classic Radials and found out that they stilled had my original ordered tires in stock. I also found out that they were $210 a piece, plus shipping, plus I expedited the order, youch! I also didn't splurge when I ordered the very wide white walls of 3 1/4 inches. I have always had a thing for wide whites on an old car! Actually, if they were reasonable, I'd probably put wide white walls on every car I own. And if I ever own a motorcycle, it will definitely have wide white walls.
 May 26, 2010

Took the Jeepster to Old Country Buffet's Wednesday night cruise in Greensburg. This was the first time the Jeepster was to an event since the engine rebuild. It got a lot of visitors and pictures taken. It was an interesting crowd at the cruise. There were a few old original cars like the Jeepster, but there were even more street rods and hot rods. A few corvettes and lots of interesting cars to look at. We went in and had dinner and came out to look at the cars some more. The Jeepster ran great! I took it in and out of overdrive a few times. It's like driving a different car when it's in overdrive. Almost like riding an old wooden rollercoaster. We cruised over to Tom's house after leaving Old Country Buffet and someone followed us into his driveway. One of Tom's neighbors followed us to Tom's and wanted to look at the Jeepster. He loved it and asked all kinds of questions. I was thrilled that he liked it so much to stop on his way through. By the time we left Tom's it was dark out and the lights came on. This was the first time driving the Jeepster at night. It was awesome! But there's way too much to do in order to drive the little Jeepster. Your hand and feet coordination have to be top notch in order to operate it at a safe level. I wish I would have brought a camera to the Jeepster's first outing since the engine rebuild, but other than that, today was a huge success!
 May 22, 2010 - May 23, 2010

Received another carburetor rebuild kit from Kaiser's, it's the same one that they use to rebuild the ones that they sell. So, we're rebuilding the original carburetor that was on the car when I got it. A true WA-1 with automatic choke. We dipped the parts in carburetor cleaner after taking it apart. Then the next day we put it together. I'm going to put it on the Jeepster tomorrow some time.
  March 24, 2010

Feeling a little adventurous, I decided to take the Jeepster for a ride over to my Grandfather's house to show him. Things went great till I got to his house and the Jeepster was stuck in Overdrive. And it couldn't keep running in idle. So things weren't going well for it, and in order to get it home I had to call in a tow truck. Hopefully this is the only time it needs a tow truck to get me home.

Even though it was getting towed home... it still looked good.
 March 21, 2010

I think it's finally time for the first car ride since last year. First car ride since restoration and rebuild of the engine, transmission, electrical system, fuel system, and much, much more. We took it down Millersdale to Route 136 then back. The first ride was almost 5 Miles. Not bad for the first ride. When we got back we checked everything and nothing leaked. I'd say for a couple of guys that just like taking things apart to see how they work, this was a huge success!



Yes there's still snow on the ground. The white stuff is amazing!
 March 13, 2010

So dad and I have been working on the Jeepster pretty much none stop in between him working and having some time to spend some time on it. We have finally marked today as the first day that we're going to try to start it. After tuning some things, double checking all the fluids, re-checking the head bolts... we are ready to start the Jeepster.



It's Just AMAZING! (The word of the day / week, Amazing) I pulled it in and out of the garage a few times. There's still plenty of snow, so it won't be going out on the roads any time soon. Plus these were just practice ins and outs. Jeepster first start after engine and transmission rebuild with new electrical system, fuel lines, and much much more!
February 23, 2010

More wiring today.  It's going pretty well.  All of the picture to the right connects to the Jeepsters gauges and to the starter switch.  On a side note, the heater looks very nice under there.
February 20, 2010

This was the windshield washer fluid container that came with the Jeepster when I got it.  Could this be original equipment on the Jeepster?  If so, how cool! 

I need to find someone that would know.  It's pretty cool, all plastic, but very very old plastic.  I'll clean it up and see if I can find someone at a car show that may know the origination of this container.

February 13, 2010

Taking apart all of the dash wiring today.  It's a royal mess.  I'm going to wire it just like original.  My father and I also put in the radiator and hooked it up.  We also started putting in the wiring harness on the rest of the Jeepster.  It's all coming together pretty well.  I'll be cruising in it sooner than later.  Although, all of these wires are going to be difficult knowing where it all goes.  The best idea is just to go back to original, tear it all out and rebuild it.
February 9, 2010

Received the new battery hold down the other day.  Today is a good day to put it on.  Also, painted the radiator another coat of black and it's looking terrific..
 January 26, 2010

Worked on the Jeepster for most of the day.  The radiator just didn't look right flat black, so I repainted it in glossy black and it looks much better.
January 25, 2010

Installed the Jeepster's horns.  Oh do they look nice, I can't wait to hook them up and hear the two tones sing together.  I'll be going beep beep in no time.
 January 25, 2010

Prepared and painted the radiator.  Tom thought it should be painted flat black.  I tried that and it just didn't look right.  I might repaint it with glossy black.
January 24, 2010

Second coat of paint and some reassembly of the Heater.  I really like the almond color and the chrome I painted on the fan.  It'll look great under the dash.
 January 23, 2010

Tom and my dad came over today to help put more parts on the Jeepster.  We got a good bit more done.  We headed over to NAPA in South Greensburg, PA to exchange the fan belt again and again.  I made 4 total trips to get the right fan belt.  There's not too much adjustment that the generator bracket allows, and it was a tight fit.  We had to unbolt the generator to get it to fit.  We put on lots of other parts as well.  But the new fan belt going on sure did feel good. 

January 23, 2010

It was time that I brought out one of my prized e-Bay winning auctions.  My new horns!  I love making noise in an old car with old horns.  They're in perfect shape.   They're the rarer style of horns that were an option in Jeepsters.  They came with the "Luxury Package".  All they need is a little steel wool and a fresh coat of paint.  So that's exactly what I did.  They look terrific, and I can't wait to put them on the Jeepster.
 January 19, 2010

With torch in hand, my father came back over to seal shut the small hole where the heater has a joint.  The heater was again dissipating the heat from the torch, however it was hot enough to melt the metal and seal the hole.  Mission accomplished.  I put the heater back together and finished painting it after he left.
 January 18, 2010

My dad came over after work today and we hooked some hoses up to the heater core and it worked great.  It heated up very nicely.  Almost too hot to touch.  Then we applied a little pressure and there were no leaks.  Then, my dad applied a little bit more pressure and we noticed that it was leaking slightly on the bottom where it connects to the hard shell around it.  So my father soldered it shut, but because it's a heater, it worked great at dissipating the heat from the soldering iron.  So, it didn't completely fix the issue.  He's going to come back tomorrow with a torch.
 January 17, 2010 - January 19, 2010

I cleaned up the heater parts some more.  And then I painted them.  I painted all of the metal parts chrome and the outside container box a beautiful Almond color.  I'm really happy with how it's turning out.
January 16, 2010

While my father and Tom worked on figuring out how to get the starter to work on the Jeepster, I decided that the heater needed restoration.  And I wanted to see if it even all functioned properly.  So the only way to see if things work is to take them apart, and that's exactly what I did.

We hooked the fan motor up to a battery and it spun like a champion.  We're going to get some hoses to test the heater core.  I spent a few hours sanding and wire brushing all the parts to get them ready to be painted.

There aren't any pictures of it, but we did alot of contemplating about the starters.  The one that I bought off of Gene didn't seem to work with my engine.  And through reading various articles we found that the Jeepster could have used either the starter that I had, or the mechanical one that I bought off of Gene.  So far we haven't found information regarding which is more correct.  Other than Jeepsters have both of them in them.  The mechanical one looks like it was used primarily in the 1948 - 1949 Jeepster models.  Although we're not entirely sure on any of this.  We did find that the starters relate to the number of teeth on the fly-wheel.  So the decision now is to buy a new fly-wheel and chance that everything will work the way we think it should after going through everything.  Or, use the starter that I had rebuilt that came with / on the Jeepster.  Although the mechanical one would be alot neater to use in my opinion, according to what we read, they switched to my starter because it was more reliable.  Reliability in an antique car is worth it's weight in gold.  (I don't know how to weigh reliability.)  So, I made the more logical decision not to buy a new fly wheel, and not to use the mechanical starter I got off of Gene.  We're going to use the one that the Jeepster came with.  It's probably the correct starter, I just thought it would be neat to use the mechanical one.  There's more visible moving parts, and it would definitely be a conversation piece.
 November 14, 2009

We went to town putting parts back onto the engine today.  Too many parts to name them all.  I'll let the pictures show everything that we did.  Tom and my father came over to help.
November 14, 2009

As sad as this sounds, it took us hours to get the firewall board installed.  I bought it from the Jeepsterman and it was supposed to be pre-cut.  Well, it didn't really fit too correctly.  Many of the holes don't match up or holes were missing.  And I think it's a little too big.  We fixed most of these problems, I went to Lowes to get some hardware to hold it on, and we cut more necessary holes into and straitened some of the cuts to make it work.  Didn't really think it would take all day to get the firewall in, but it's definitely starting to come along.
October 18, 2009

After we got the grill bar going the right way, we worked on getting the engine back into the Jeepster.  This was an incredibly tough task.  Because were weren't centered with our chain, it was lop-sided and we had to lift on one side constantly to get it over the new engine mounts that I just put on.  The new engine mounts were great and had a little give.  I don't think we would have been able to get the engine seated correctly with the old engine mounts.  They were extremely hard and had no movement whatsoever in them. 

After a few hours of trying to get the engine in correctly, my brother Wayne and his friend Jimmy came to help give a lifting hand.  With Tom, my father, Wayne, Jimmy V., and myself all lifting the engine, we finally were able to get it to fit correctly.  In order to take it off the cherry picker, we put many jacks under it to keep it from moving. 

After we had the engine in, I took apart the cherry picker and brought it back over to Tom's and my father's friend Jimmy's house.  Without it, we would have had to buy or rent one, so I am most grateful.    When Tom and I got back home to work on the Jeepster some more, my dad was already putting parts back on the Engine.
October 18, 2009

First thing's first...  I'm putting the top grill bar on the correct way.  It's been upside down for far too long.  It's funny, it looked good upside down, but it looks terrific the way that it was supposed to be.

We also pulled all of the masking tape off of the Jeepster from when I was painting.  Very good lesson learned today.  30 to 60 year old paint should never have tape on it.  The tape took some paint with it, when we pulled it off.

October 10, 2009 - Only Jeepster at Hershey

At Hershey this year, and our number one goal was to see another Jeepster so that I could compare what we needed to do to keep moving forward.  We were here all day Thursday and Friday, walked every field and never saw a glimpse of a Jeepster.  Well, that's not true.  I bought a near perfect set of original optional fog lights offered for Jeepster that say Willys on them.  I bargained them down to $60 for the pair and really just couldn't pass them up.  I've seen not so nice ones go on E-bay for over $300 a pair.  Definitely a great deal, other than I have another set sitting at home and I still don't know how to mount them.

Anyways... we searched and searched, and on Show Day, there was finally two Willy's Jeeps registered in the program book.  We went to the first one and it was a near perfect Army Jeep from WWII.  Definitely appropriate, but not what we were looking for.  We then went to the next Jeep listed.  We actually saw it pulling in, and chased it down.  We followed the 1950 Jeepster all throughout the show field trying to keep up.  We didn't even let them park and get out of the car before our cameras were going off.  The Jeepster had it's own Paparazzi.  To our surprise it was just like my Jeepster.  It's Twin!  It was red with the black top trim like mine is supposed to have.  It even got better.  When we got a closer look at the engine, it was a 6 cylinder, exactly like mine.  We actually talked to the owner and got some great ideas on where to get some of the parts that I was missing.  We took a tremendous amount of pictures (117 in all) and had a great time spending over an hour studying this Jeepster. 

The greatest thing about Jeepsters that I've learned since owning one.  If you have it out and about, everyone that was around in 1950 as a teenager or early 20's, remembers them.  They either owned one, had a friend that owned one, or still own one throughout their lifetime.  It's truly amazing.  One gentleman that came up and started talking to us, said that he bought one when they were new.  Just like it.  He told me all about his, and then I told him how I was restoring mine.  He then pointed out some things that weren't original on this Jeepster, and one minor mistake.  The top front grill chrome bar that goes across the front on this Jeepster is upside down.  I wasn't too sure, but I'm pretty sure mine is seated the exact same way.  So of course, I bring up the internet on my phone and check my Jeepster and of course the top bar is exactly the same.  We talk a while and I pull up some other Jeepsters, about 10 in all that I had on my phone and look.  1/2 of them have the bar one way.  And the other 1/2 had it the way that this person was talking about.  He said that he had owned one new and he's had over 6 throughout his lifetime.  He's definitely the expert.  So when he explained why it was upside down, it completely made entire sense.  When I get home, that sucker is being put on the right way.  It's easy to understand how it got put on upside down.  All you have to do is not pay attention when it was taken off throughout the years.

This Jeepster wasn't perfect, but boy oh boy was it beautiful.  It was as close as I had seen to being completely correct.  And it gave me a few more ideas to do on mine.  What a find.  Now I can't wait to get my engine running and getting the Jeepster going down the road again.
October 10, 2009 - 1950 Jeepster Toy

So, we're at Hershey, and of course, I love looking at all the different cars.  We're seeing just about everything here.  Even a plane that sold... yes a plane.  The Tucker convertible was amazing along with it's body guards.  Truly amazing (did they make it?).  There definitely were bargains to be had and deals to be made.  But the one thing I wish was much cheaper was this metal 1950 Willy's Jeepster toy.  Tom and my father spotted it first while Carina and I had to voyage over to Chocolate World.

They only wanted $1500 for the antique Jeepster Toy.  Too bad that will buy many Jeepster parts that are needed for its restoration.

Some day I hope to own one of these.
September 25, 2009

Engine Number 644720-1 is being unwrapped.  All of the parts were neatly wrapped by P & R.  I am exceptionally pleased with everything.  Many Jeepsters are referred to by the wrong VIN number.  Many people don't know that the VIN plate is located under the dash and refer to the engine block number as the VIN.

Everything inside looks great.  Fantastic even.  I can't wait to put this back into the Jeepster where it belongs.  And, I'm sure Carina wants her parking space in the garage back, so we'll have to make some room.
September 25, 2009

Picked up the U-Haul trailer and headed over to P & R Engine Rebuilders to pick up the engine.  There really wasn't much to see other than the bill.  From what I can tell the engine looks fantastic.  They have it all wrapped up nicely and loaded it with a fork lift.  Then I tied it down and away we went.  They gave me some nice gifts, a great looking t-shirt and a "breaking in" guide for the engine.

When the engine was finally home, we unloaded it (pushed it off the trailer into the garage) and then took the U-Haul Trailer back.  I wanted to get it back before they closed. 
 September 24, 2009

I received a call from P & R Engine Rebuilders in Greensburg, PA and they said that the engine was all packed up and ready to go.  They had completed all the final rebuilding and even painted it glossy black for me.  I called U-Haul and ordered the same small trailer that I've used when I needed to move small, heavy things, and they said that it was available.  So, it's all set, tomorrow I'll be bringing the engine home. 

During the last week, I've touched up the firewall some more with more painting and lots more sanding.
September 12, 2009

Today, the firewall and engine compartment received a new paint job.  I put on two coats of primer with 2 coats of glossy black high temperature paint.  I taped off everything so that I only got the black where I wanted it.  Carina even came down to point out all of the spots that I missed.   I'll probably put on a few more coats in the next few days.  Sand it a little bit more and touch it up here and there.  Overall, it looks much better than when I started.  The picture on the right is after the first primer coat.
 September 12, 2009

I picked up the Jeepster parts from Gene today.  He had them all boxed up and labeled for me.  I loaded up the boxes and then the antique bell and was on my way in no time.  I can't wait to try to get the starter to work on the Jeepster.
September 11, 2009

Taking more things out of the engine compartment today.  I also removed as many wires as possible, along with the voltage regulator.  I spent the rest of the day sanding to get everything ready for painting.
 September 6, 2009

We went to the annual Western Pennsylvania Region, A.A.C.A car show today.  I was introduced to Gene, one of Tom's friends that he's known for a long time, who said that he used to own a few Jeepsters.  He actually still had parts left that he'd like to sell me.  He started describing all the parts and literature that he had to sell.  Pretty remarkable.  A rebuild original starter, some gauges, a rebuilt transmission (wish I would have met him earlier, I wouldn't be getting mine rebuilt), original fog lights for the front grill, and an amazing amount of literature.

So, we agreed that I'd drive over after the car show and check out what he has.

Everything was kept very neatly in boxes.  He had an assortment of parts for the Jeepster.  Some of it I could use, some of it won't be used.  He only wanted to sell everything.  I really wanted the original starter, the fog lights, and having an extra transmission is always nice, but I'd probably keep getting mine rebuilt if there was ever a problem with it.  His number was a little higher than what I wanted to go, but we agreed on a price, because I just couldn't not buy what he had left.  Hopefully I'll be able to use some of the parts. 

On a side note, on our way out he was showing us his garage, and I saw an antique cast iron bell sitting in it.  He said that it was for sell as well.  Well, I couldn't pass up a bell, so it's going home with me as well.  It'll shine up beautifully. 

I'm going to come back next Sunday morning to pick up all the parts.
September 5, 2009

Today I stripped everything off of the firewall.  I took out the heater so that I could sand down the firewall and make it look really great.  I also took about the windshield wiper vacuum motor to clean it up.  And I started to wet sand the firewall.  I plan on painting it a nice glossy black when it's ready and then insert the firewall that I bought from Jeepster Man.  I plan on sanding and painting the wheel wells also.  Lots of work in the near future.
 September 3, 2009

I heard back from Cottman Transmission about the transmission.  It needs a complete overhaul.  The gears are actually broken.  I find that hard to believe because prior to the wedding my dad and I took it apart and thought the gears actually looked very good.  I guess we're not the professionals.  Well, it turns out that they usually order all the parts and put a 40% mark up on all the parts that they buy, since they have to put out the money in advance without the customer putting down a deposit on getting their transmission's worked on..  He told me that he called Jeepsterman and they had all the parts he needed, but if I wanted to give them a call, pay for the parts, and have them shipped to my house, it would save me a good bit of money.  As it was, the parts were over $500.  So of course I called and placed the order.  Cottman's said that they don't normally do that, but if I hadn't given them the 3 places to buy parts from, then they wouldn't have been able to rebuild my transmission, because none of their suppliers had the correct parts to rebuild it.  So I thought that was fair enough. 
August 30, 2009

I found a very nice looking 1950 Willys Jeepster on EBay that I saved all of their pictures in order to use for reference in the future.  Noticing the front it looks like the Jeepster is missing a grill bar on the bottom.  I do like the color and the interior.  Someday the Jeepster in our garage will hopefully look as nice.

 

 August 25, 2009

I've been calling all around the Greensburg / Pittsburgh area looking for someone to work on a 1950 standard transmission.  No one wants the challenge.  Some places would take it if it was automatic, but refused to touch a standard transmission.  Then I called Cottman Transmission in Greensburg, PA and they said that they would get back to me, since their one transmission guy was off that day.  They called me back a few days ago and said that they would definitely rebuild the transmission for me.

So, I took the transmission over to them with some Jeepster catalogs for parts for them to order.  I gave them the standard places to get parts; Jeepsterman, Kaiser Willys, and Walck's.  They said that they'd call within a week and let me know what it needed.  So, here's to waiting some more on a major part for the Jeepster.
  August 14, 2009

I stopped by P & R Engine Rebuilders today to drop off a deposit on getting the engine rebuilt.  To my delight they already started working on it, and it looked great.  There was one small crack in the engine block that they were able to fix without any problems.  It's right after the second piston down.  He showed me everything about the engine.  He explained why someone in the past put an electric fuel pump on the Jeepster.  The camshaft is damaged in a way that a mechanical fuel pump would not work.  We're going to replace the camshaft with a new one, so that I can put in an original mechanical fuel pump.  I'm thrilled!  Now all I need to do is find one.

Then, he showed me the culprit of the engines demise... the piston head that broke.  It was the cause of all the noise under the hood.  It was in pretty sour shape.  He said that the piston has been broke for a really long time.  It just finally cracked.  I told him that I've only owned the car for a little over a year and he said that it cracked well before I owned it.  That was a little sigh of relief.  At least I didn't cause much damage to the Jeepster. 

Isn't Jeepster Forensics cool!?!
 August 7, 2009

I rented a great little trailer from U-HAUL in Irwin, PA in order to take the engine over to P & R Engine Rebuilders, located in Greensburg, PA.  I'm getting the works done to the engine.

They said that the engine will be ready in 3 weeks.  I showed them all of my catalogs from Kaiser Willys and gave them The Jeepster Man's phone number so that they could order all the parts that they needed to rebuild the engine.  I'm pretty pumped, although there still is alot of work to do before we can put the engine back in the Jeepster.
 August 2, 2009 - Afternoon

Well, we aligned the cherry picker up and attached the chains to the engine.  Nothing was holding up the engine except for the chains and the jacks underneath it.  We carefully lifted it out and navigated the engine safely away from the Jeepster.  Everything went very well, other than my garage and driveway are not the same height.  Tom had to stand on the cherry picker while we moved it around so it wouldn't topple over.  We had to have the arm of the cherry picker out the entire way in order to have enough clearance. 

Next step is to take the engine to P & R Engine Rebuilders in Greensburg, PA.
 August 2, 2009 - Late Morning / Early Afternoon

Once we unscrewed the first bolt, parts started flying out of the vehicle. Tom and I were busy taking all of the parts connected to the engine from under the hood.  And my dad worked under the car trying to release the transmission.  It didn't take us very long taking parts out.  We carefully took pictures and labeled parts as we removed them. 

It was a pretty good time taking the parts off.  Everything is leading up to taking the engine out.  We braked for lunch before we took the whole engine out.
 August 2, 2009

The day the Jeepster has waited for most of its life.  It's heart is going to get replaced and upgraded and put back as close to original as I can.  Before we started to take anything out of the Jeepster, we decided to take as many pictures as we could in case when we start to put things back together we forget where they go.  Also, we wanted to make sure we had all the parts put back correctly.  These are all of the pre-destruction photos.  This is how the engine looked before we removed a single bolt.  Hopefully it looks much better and runs much better after we rebuild it.
 August 1, 2009

I went to Jimmy's to pick up the cherry picker and brought it home.  I started assembling it, because hopefully tomorrow will be the big day.  Can't wait to start this project.
 July 25, 2009

I ran into my parents friend, Jimmy. In addition, Tom has known Jimmy for most of his life as well.  I was talking to him at a local car show that I took the Chevelle out to in order to get it some fresh air.  I was telling him how we were going to rebuild the Jeepster's engine and he offered his cherry picker for me to use.  That's wonderful because I didn't have one and would have needed to rent or buy one.  So next Saturday, I'm going to go over and pick up the cherry picker. 
 May 16, 2009

My dad and Tom decided to come over and check out the Jeepster.  I knew it wasn't going to be a good day for it.  They both agreed that the sounds coming from the engine were probably a broken piston.  I was thinking that it was definitely that as well.  So, I decided right then and there, that we would be rebuilding the Jeepster's engine and that while I have it out, I might as well rebuild the transmission as well.  It seems kind of déjà-vu that we'd be taking the transmission out again.  My dad and I have already taken the transmission out plenty of times.  Now all we needed was a good weekend to start working on the Jeepster.
 May 9, 2009

Well, today started out great.  I drove the Jeepster all around Greensburg and Latrobe.  I thought that I'd go surprise my parents who were at a dog show in Delmont, PA.  I was taking Route 66 between Greensburg and Delmont and unfortunately something very bad was starting to occur.  I heard a clinking / clapping noise and started to blow smoke.  I still had decent power, so I pulled off and checked everything out.  The Jeepster was not happy at me.  I was running low on oil and I was losing radiator fluid.  I was almost to the dog show, so I continued my way there.  By the time I got there, the Jeepster was definitely over heating.  My dad and I checked it out, and then we went to buy some oil for it.  Then I got some water to put in the radiator.  The Jeepster started fine, but it sounded awful.  I decided that I would try to drive it home, rather than get it towed home.  Worse case scenario was that it did break down and I'd have it towed home.  We stopped for some gas at the Sunoco in Delmont.  I was wondering if it was a little low, even though the fuel gauges  indicated that I had enough gas to get home. 

Everyone is always so polite whenever I'm driving the Jeepster, and especially if I stop at a gas station.  Lots of people come over to look at it, and they sometimes ask if they can take a picture of the Jeepster, with or without them in it.  And of course, I always allow them.  It's nice that they ask, but they really wouldn't need to.  This gas station stop was no different, lots of people gathered around and said what a beautiful car.  I wish on this occasion however that no one was around, and that they would all go away because I knew what was going to happen whenever I started the Jeepster.  Unfortunately, I was correct.  It started loud, like it was dying and smoked everyone out.  As I pulled out of the gas station, I knew that I needed to get the Jeepster home.  It was drastically losing power.  I could barely get the Jeepster over 25 miles per hour, which for the state that it's in, it's probably a good thing I didn't go too fast.  I finally got the Jeepster home, and we checked it out a little bit more and decided to back it into the garage and let it sit over night and check it out in the morning.  Maybe the noise will go away?  Miracles do happen right?
March 7, 2009

I haven't worked too much on the Jeepster lately.  Although, Jedi our new little puppy absolutely loves rides in the Jeepster.  He doesn't like any other car.  I think he loves convertibles.  And we've been taking it for many short trips around the area.  Today was a great trip around the Greensburg area for the Jeepster.  The weather was beautiful for early March.
September 27, 2008

We took the Jeepster to "Idlewild's HallowBoo" at Idlewild Park.  It was a great day!  The weather was pretty good.  We stayed most of the day, until my dad called and said that it was starting to rain and we should get the Jeepster home since it still doesn't have windows. 

The Jeepster probably hasn't seen rain in many years.  It came with sand from the balmy New Mexico deserts.  It was not going to see rain today.

So, we packed up and began driving home, no signs of rain, but suddenly we crested over the hill near Mountain View Inn on Route 30 leaving Latrobe, PA, and from out of no where we were in a sudden downpour of rain.

To try to avoid all of the rain, we ducked into a gas station at the bottom of the hill, but the gas stations roof is very weak and wasn't stopping the constant downpour.  Rain was still getting on the Jeepster.  So, we decided to brave it and drive to my parents house in the rain.  As we were pulling into the driveway the rain began to slow down.

When we got home

, we got out and dried off the entire Jeepster and begun to dry ourselves off.  As it turns out, everyone at Hallowboo told us that they didn't see any rain all day and if we would have just stayed we would've missed it all.  Oh well, next project we'll be putting together all of the windows.

September 21, 2008

When we first installed the hub caps we didn't know that we needed to have special clips on the rims.  Since we didn't have the clips for the wedding, we used "dum dum" in order to hold on the special Willys hub caps.  Today, we installed the clips to hold on the hub caps and we also felt more comfortable using a little "dum dum" when appropriate.  See the little black things in the picture, those are the clips we were missing.  I only had one mishap at our car show in which one of the hub caps fell off and went rolling away.  Luckily it was in a grassy spot.
September 15, 2008

I was always annoyed whenever I went to put something into the glove box and there wasn't a box.  So a few weeks ago I ordered a glove box from Kaiser Willys and today is the day that it's being installed.  It looks wonderful, and it's very functional.
September 15, 2008

The spark plug wires are worn out, so we decided to replace those next.  I need every advantage when starting the Jeepster.    They look much better than the old worn out ones.  And I can really tell a difference.  The chrome wire holder seems to be pretty rare, I haven't seen it on many other Jeepsters.  Most of theirs is metal like mine, however, the other ones are painted black.  I have only seen one other Jeepster with it being chrome.  And I definitely prefer shiny.
September 12, 2008

After much searching, my dad found the correct solenoid for the starter.  Researching part numbers is exciting.  After acquiring the solenoid, my dad put the new solenoid on and we tried it out.

It worked like new as soon as we installed the starter.  What a wonderful world, hopefully I won't have to worry about parking down hill anymore.  Only bad thing... the solenoid is made in Mexico.  Oh well, at least it works.

 

The 12 volt part number is:  24106....  I need the 6 volt part number:  24105.

September 5, 2008 - September 6, 2008

The Jeepster has overcome many failed start attempts in the last few months with us making sure that we park downhill, so that we can catch it in gear.  Today is the day that we hope that will never happen again.  I'm taking the starter to be rebuilt by Murray Automotive Electric off of Route 30, in Latrobe, PA. 

Everything went very well, however whenever I received the starter back from Murray, they had mistakenly put on a 12 volt solenoid.  This won't work because the Jeepster is a 6 volt vehicle.  So, I called them up and brought the starter back to them, because it just won't work in this setup.  When I got there, they informed me that they did not have any 6 volt solenoids that would work for my starter.  So, I called my dad, and we had a new mission.  Find a 6 volt solenoid that's correct for the Jeepster. 

August 31, 2008

The Jeepster made it to the Western Pennsylvania Region, A.A.C.A. Annual Car Show at Legion Keener Park in Latrobe, PA. I've attended the car show every year since '93 after my dad bought a harbor blue '57 Chevy and joined the car club. I later became a member and enjoy helping out with the car show and especially with the judging.   (If you've read every post, then you've read those lines before.  **The very bottom one.**) 

This car show marks one year after Carina fell in love with Jeepsters.  It prompted her to seek them out at the Hershey, PA annual car show.  Then, ultimately leading to us buying one for ourselves.  We again enjoyed talking to everyone that would listen about our Jeepster and its journey to us from Carlsbad, New Mexico.  And everything else that the Jeepsters been through in the last year, while part of our family.
August 11, 2008 - August 12, 2008

Well, upon further inspection we found that the Kingpins needed replacement.  So earlier last week I ordered some new ones and the photos are of us replacing the Kingpins.  Aren't pictures wonderful.  It's amazing that these little pieces don't break all the time and can withstand so much force.  While replacing the kingpins there was alot of 'gunk' to clean off as well.  But they sure turned out great.  Thanks Dad!
August 10, 2008

We went with my dad and Tom Milligan to the Cedar Creek, PA car show.  It's always a great car show to go to.  They had over 600 cars registered this year.  They even had a plane fly over to take pictures of all of the cars.  It was really neat.  Before we went to the car show, we went to Ageless Autos to take some pictures of the Jeepster.  We had a really great day, and we lucked out with another wonderful weather day for the Jeepster.  We still don't have windows yet.
August 10, 2008

We took a new picture to be at the top of the page for the Jeepster.  I'm retiring the old one, but moving it to here.  This is a picture of when we first got the Jeepster.  Much of the car has been updated.  We loved it then.  And we definitely love it now.
July 26, 2008

We decided to take some new pictures of the Jeepster after all the new enhancements at my old elementary school, Fort Allen.  So the Jeepster enjoyed a fun filled photo fashion show.  We even put the top up.  It looks very different with the top up.  Luckily for the Jeepster, we usually only drive it when the top needs to be down.  We put a few miles on it today and then brought the Jeepster back home.
  July 22, 2008

We took the Jeepster to "Old Fashion Days" at Idlewild Park.  It was a great day!  The weather was fantastic.  We stayed all day and rode rides until it was getting closer to dusk, then we decided to go home while it there was still some sun left.  We made it home just fine and put the Jeepster away for the night.
July 20, 2008

We took the Jeepster out during my brother's 22 birthday party.  We got our picture taken with the Just Married sign, and then went for a cruise for the last time the sign would be on.  We went pretty well.  The speedometer broke right before the wedding and still wasn't fixed, so I don't know how fast we were going, but we were keeping up well with traffic on the highway.  When we got back to the house, I gave a few more people a ride, then we put it away.
 July 19, 2008

I can't find a picture to prove that we were there, but the Jeepster made it to its first car cruise tonight.  We went to the Norwin Cruise Night in Irwin, PA.  We had no problems other than the car didn't want to start at first, but we got it moving a little bit downhill and it started right up.    Besides for a few ice cream runs to Frosty Shack and the wedding, this is the first time people outside of the neighborhood have seen it.  It seemed as if no one walked by without either having a story about how they remember them, or they owned one, or just to ask what is it?  We definitely enjoyed talking to everyone.
 June 21, 2008  -- On our way to the reception





















This is one of my favorite pictures of all the cars in the wedding going down Seton Hills Road on our way to the reception.
June 21, 2008  -- After the Ceremony

Carina and I making our post ceremony get away to the reception.  All of the hard work on the Jeepster really paid off.  We looked wonderful.  The "Just Married" sign is a fantastic addition.  Everything came together just wonderfully, especially Carina and I.

One interesting story about the Jeepster on the wedding day.  I need to get better details on the events, but I have heard that my father and Carina's father were spotted driving the Jeepster to retrieve Carina's dad's car.  A small boy had a very curious expression on his face when he saw two grown men riding next to each other in the front seat with a "Just Married" sign tied to the back wheel.

And a special Thanks to my dad for all the help to get the car ready for the wedding.  And my mom for everything she did to the Jeepster for the wedding.

And another special thanks to my dad and Tom for letting Carina and I have their cars in our wedding.

And finally but least, a huge thank you to Katie, one of Tom's daughters, for making the "Just Married" sign!

June 21, 2008  -- Before the Wedding

We had so many pictures taken before the wedding.  The picture to the left is of all of the cars in wedding.  We were so lucky for a beautiful day.  We had our Jeepster, dad's sierra gold '57 Chevy Convertible, Tom's red '57 Chevy Convertible, and Dad's blue '57 Chevy in front on St. Joseph's Chapel at Seton Hill College. 
June 21, 2008  -- Morning

I went to make the final pre-wedding touches on the Jeepster, and the main thing for me to put on was the new hub caps.  They are just gorgeous. 

Just one slight problem.  They looked fantastic, but they would not stay on.  They needed clips and I didn't have them.  Once again, my dad came to the rescue.  And for the wedding the Jeepster had "dum dum" holding the hub caps on.  No one would ever know, if I didn't tell. 

My dad surprised me by putting on a pair of white fuzzy dice to really sharpen it up.  The Jeepster is ready for the wedding, thanks to my mom for vacuuming it out so Carina's dress wouldn't get dirty.
 June 18, 2008

Just wanted to share something special about the Jeepster.  On the driver's side glass, it still has it's last inspection sticker from Texas.  It's from August, 1972, issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety.  It's even signed by the person that conducted the inspection.
 June 18, 2008

My dad surprised me with an e-mail, showing me that the painted rims and new tires were on the Jeepster.  Such a huge event after waiting for such a long time.  The Jeepster is starting to really come together.  No more leaking issues, the wheels are on, and the new steering wheel.  Oh, and it now has plenty of power to go.  The only thing stopping it now is a slight issue with the battery recharging.  I can't wait to see what it looks like with the new hub caps.
 June 17, 2008

To surprise me, my dad took the rims and the new tires to our mechanic to have them put together.  Although, he didn't tell me till the next day.
June 16, 2008

All of the rims are finally painted!  All with freshly beautiful red paint.  My dad's been helping me so much, because the wedding is next week and I need to be in Scranton to work.  The Jeepster is going to look great for the wedding.
May 31, 2008

Kaiser Willys had the new thermostat housing delivered within a week.  My dad painted and installed the new thermostat housing.  He also installed new radiator hoses and clamps.  Hopefully the antifreeze won't leak anymore.  So we don't waste anymore antifreeze, we filled it up with water.  And, just the results we were looking for, kind of.  After a few attempts the Jeepster started and the leaking problem was fixed, so was the the loud noises coming from the engine. 
May 27, 2008

Well, we learned that indeed the black thing at the end was not supposed to be there.  My dad got a tool in order to remove it easily, and he said it was really stuck on there.  Then, he proceeded to put my steering wheel on the same way that I did.  Everything went together properly, just like they were made for each other (and they were).  Now we'll be driving around in style for sure.
 May 25, 2008

I tried installing the new steering wheel today.  I was able to take the old one off pretty easy, but there's this other piece that I'm not sure what it's for.  And with it on, the new steering wheel will not fit.  The problem is the black metal part at the end.  I'm pretty sure it needs to be removed.  Nothing matches up to it.  I think it was just put on in order to make the steering wheel that was on it function.  The steering wheel that was on it when I bought the Jeepster definitely didn't come stock.  It looks more like an early Mustang steering wheel.   So that didn't go as planned, now I'm going to see if I can find better pictures of 1949 Jeepsters with the proper steering wheel with horn ring.
 May 24, 2008

I cleaned and painted the passenger wheel wells today. I also touched up and painted more things on the drivers side. The wheel wells look great! I took the shocks out the day before so that I could easily paint, and had to install them again. Then, I thought it'd be a great idea to put tires on it. No, not the white walls, but newer "traditional" Jeep tires. My dad has an extra set of wheels for his Jeep Wrangler, so we thought we'd try them out on the Jeepster. I'm amazed, my dad's 2000 Jeep Wrangler's rims are an exact match to my 1950 Willys Jeepster. They haven't changed bolt patterns in 50 years! And, to add to the excitement, his tires are the exact same size as the ones I bought P225/75R15. The only difference is the hub cap, which sparkles "Jeep" instead of the pretty moon hub caps on the Jeepster. I can't wait to get the rims painted so that I can get the wide white wall tires mounted and the tires on the Jeepster. It'll look very snazzy! The other thing I really want to get installed is the new steering wheel.

My dad was able to finish re-installing the water pump and new thermostat. We filled the radiator back up with water and I drove it out of the garage into the driveway. Then I started hearing some really aweful sounds coming from under the hood. So, I stopped the car and my dad checked it out, and the thermostat housing cracked when my dad was re-installing it.  No worries, I'll call Kaiser Willys in the morning and order a new one.
 May 24, 2008

While I was busy with painting, my dad was busy working on the new thermostat.  It looks so out of place all new and shiny.
 May 23, 2008

I scraped and cleaned the driver's side wheel wells. Then, I started to paint the wheel wells and all of the other parts attached to the axel. They look great. My dad worked on getting the water pump installed all day. He also painted my rim again with a darker shade of red. We need to sand blast the other ones before we can paint them. I used my super duper black paint on the wheel wells, and sprayed paint onto the axels in order to better protect them. The wheels will look amazing with the new freshly painted background.
 May 22, 2008

Preparing for me to come home for the weekend, my dad started to remove pieces for me.  We wanted to replace the thermostat in the engine and hopefully that will help with the overheating issue.
 May 21, 2008

One more month until the wedding.  If we're going to be able to use the Jeepster, I need to get very busy.
May 7, 2008

My dad thought it was a great idea to start painting the rims.  He had previously taken the old tires and rims to our mechanic to have them separated.  It turns out the rims are in great condition, so I'm pretty excited to use the ones that were on the Jeepster.  This pictures is a comparison of the size of the new water pump against the rims.  It also shows the difference with the fresh new paint on the rims.  My dad sent me the pictures while I was away and I thought the tires were too orange.  We're going to go for a more deeper red color on the rims.
May 7, 2008

I got a package delivered at home. The water pump that I ordered has arrived. It looks nice... definitely lacking color... We'll have to fix that. But it does look great, and again Kaiser Willys has delivered very fast. Hopefully this stops my antifreeze leaking problem.

It didn't take my dad long until he painted it orange.
May 3, 2008

Roads? Where I'm going I don't need roads... One of my favorite lines ever (Back to the Future). But seriously, I don't think the Jeepster needs roads with the new hover overhaul it had, so my dad decided to surprise me by taking the tires off the Jeepster. No really, he surprised me by taking the current tires off. Then to go one step further have the tires taken off the rims so that he / me could paint them front and back with a nice shade of red paint. Might as well while it's getting new wide white wall tires.

My dad took the wheels to our mechanic and had the tires removed from the rims.  It's all starting to come together. Hopefully it all gets done for the wedding.

May 1, 2008

The Jeepster has been leaking antifreeze since I've owned it. We were speculating the leaking has to be coming from one of those radiator hoses. After taking apart everything underneath my dad started to investigating the leaking fluid. And found that it has to be coming from the water pump. He sent me this picture this morning showing fluid coming from it. So, I called Kaiser Willys up and of course they had it in stock with the gasket. Not too bad to replace, all they need me to do is send back my old one and hit me up for a core charge, but definitely worth it since obviously mine is not working correctly. While on the phone with them, I decided to order new sun visors. To my luck, they only come in black. So, that works for me and I ordered brackets so that I can mount them as well.
April 27, 2008

After all the work that my dad and I have done, the Jeepster was finally ready to go for a ride again. Very exciting for me. I haven't driven it since the day before Thanksgiving. I drove it once around the block with the top still up. The car ran fantastically. Before there was a great lack of power, now the Jeepster has all kinds of power.

The radiator has been leaking some fluid, so I needed to come back real quick to put more fluid in. I came back, parked it in the driveway, and began taking the top down. Even with the low radiator fluid, my number one priority was taking the top down since it was such a nice day. My dad and I put some water in the radiator. Then I was off again. The smile couldn't be wiped away.

The winter Jeepster project of 2007 - 2008 has finally been completed. Click this link to view all the pictures with my dad's commentary.

April 26, 2008

The Jeepster had so much attention that it needed broken into 2 parts. Especially this part. I had to quit working on the Jeepster and go do wedding things with Carina for most of the afternoon and evening. Before I left for the day, my dad had the fly wheel, clutch, and bell housing back in place. Looking good too. Practically all brand new. I also helped him put in the transmission. We had a heck of a time getting it back in. We didn't get it installed, before I needed to go get ready for the evening. We decided to take a break, my dad wanted to examine it some more and try again later. While I was gone my dad decided to keep working on getting the transmission back in. Well, he was very successful. And he didn't stop there, he put everything else back together for me as well. As I was returning home, very late, he had just finished taking a picture of the Jeepster, to mark end of the night. I looked it over and was overwhelmingly impressed with everything he did and eager to take it out for a test drive. We waited until tomorrow though, just incase something didn't go as planned and we had sunlight on our side. Having the transmission and drive shaft re-installed gives me such a great feeling to know the Jeepster is back together.
April 26, 2008

Today, I finished painting the underside of the Jeepster with the special black paint. I couldn't be any happier with it. The stuff goes on so thick but yet, just a little will last a good bit. I'm actually quite surprised how little paint is needed to paint an area. I only needed to paint where I strategically missed the previous week and the back half of the Jeepster. Someone prior to me owning the Jeepster put in new floor boards, but didn't do a good job patching underneath. My dad, being my dad, wanted to do it right, so he started to patch all of the holes. He did a great job patching things up before I painted them.

While I painted, my dad did a fantastic job installing the Jeepsters new exhaust system. He painted them with a clear coat days before. He really did a great job fixing the exhaust pipes and muffler for me.
April 19, 2008 - April 20, 2008

I went home this weekend to work specifically on the Jeepster. My primary goal was to get the underside painted with my special car saving rust fighting amazing undercoating black paint. This stuff is fantastic, I highly recommend it. I even want to paint all my cars underside with this stuff it's that good. I painted the driver's side and as much as I could every where else. Because I was laying on my back the whole time and had limited movement, I needed to paint the car in sections to try to get as little of the paint on me. I had to quit short of finishing everywhere underneath, but it's almost done and looking great.
April 2008

Well, since the transmission was out and the exhaust system was readily available to be worked on. I ordered a new exhaust system from Jeepster Man. The old one was completely rusty. My dad asked me if I wanted to have it painted with high temperature clear paint. And of course I do. So, my dad painted all of the exhaust pipes for me. They look wonderful. My sister helped too. There were so many stickers on the pipes that she helped remove. And I'm not talking just stickers, they were super sticky shipping stickers. It really took her a long time, but they look great!
April, 10 2008

The tires arrived much earlier than anticipated. Diamond Back Classic Radials said that the tires would take a full month to arrive. My dad surprisingly came home to see them sitting by the garage. They're perfect, five P225/75R15 wide white wall tires that can't wait to go onto the Jeepster. I'd like to paint the rims before I put the tires on. Another project after I get the transmission back into the Jeepster.
 March 27, 2008

Well I decided to go with the same times that are already on the car. Since I won't be showing it at any national A.A.C.A. meets having the original style bias ply tires won't make much of a difference. So, today I ordered 225/75/R15's from Diamond Back Classic Radials. I decided to order 5 matching extra wide white wall tires. They were pricy, but I figure I'll only be putting on one set of tires hopefully for the next twenty years. Diamond Back said that the tires should be delivered in the next 4 to 5 weeks. Which is perfect because of all the work my dad and I have been doing to the transmission, clutch, and everything else under the car.
 March 26, 2008

I've been debating what kind of tires to get for the Jeepster. So many decisions. The 1950 Jeepster came with 6.40 x 15 bias ply tires. The Willys station wagon the same year came with 6.70 x 15 bias ply tires. I also have to decide whether to put on Bias Ply tires or Radials. After reading multiple sites, radials offer a smoother ride, faster response time, better control, easier steering, better traction, and better braking. So, I started looking at what would be the correct size tire in radials for the Jeepster.
6.40 x 15 convert to 195/75R15's and 6.70 x 15 bias ply tires convert to 205/75R15's. So, now I really had to decide which would be better for the Jeepster.
March 23, 2008

I again went to work on the transmission and bell housing cleaning it up. Trying to get some more work done on them before I have to leave back to Scranton. I'm very surprised with all of the numbers I was able to find on the parts. I'm also excited that I was able to get the transmission this clean.

I want to paint the frame and the body underneath with special paint that makes it so that the metal will not rust. We didn't know who sold the paint, so we went to Advanced Auto Parts they knew what we talking about, but it wasn't sold by them. We went to NAPA and they said that they thought that the paint saver stuff that I was looking for was sold only by CarQuest. We went to the local CarQuest place in Greensburg and sure enough they sold it. It was extremely expensive for paint, but you could buy it by the quart or in gallons. I decided to go with a gallon of the stuff. The guys at the counter were extremely helpful, they suggested to buy some empty quart containers and put the gallon into them. This way it minimizes the air in the container and the paint doesn't dry out as fast. This is supposed to be the best stuff you can put on your chassis, so I'm really looking forward to painting the underside of the Jeepster soon. The guys at the counter also said that you don't want to get any of it on you and to wear thick rubber gloves whenever you paint. It's supposed to fill anything porous and if it gets on your skin you have to wait for it to wear off. Next stop, somewhere for cheap gloves and cheap brushes. Hopefully next time I come home I can start painting the Jeepster.
March 22, 2008

My dad and I spent the day working on the Jeepster. In the morning, my dad removed the bell housing, clutch, and try to remove the fly wheel but it wouldn't budge. While he was removing the parts from the Jeepster, I decided to clean up the transmission and clutch bell housing. Wow were they gunky. It took me all day to clean the transmission and the bell housing and there was still more to clean by the end of the day. It was neat cleaning an area down to the metal and discovering part number codes and build dates stamped into the transmission and the other parts attached to it.
 March 21, 2008

All of the parts arrived from Kaiser Willys today. The steering wheel and new horn ring look terrific. The clutch and other parts that come with the master clutch kit will hopefully make a much needed improvement. Only the exhaust pipe that connects to the manifold was sent. They weren't able to get me a muffler and the tail pipe was on back ordered. But everything looks great and arrived perfectly packed.
March 19, 2008

To my luck, just after 3:00 a.m. a Willys Jeepster 1948 Steering Wheel Emblem was being auctioned off on eBay. So, I woke up in the middle of the night to outbid everyone... And I did. paid for it in seconds after winning, and went to bed. It's been a real good last 24 hours for the Jeepster. That'll go great with the new ivory steering wheel and chrome horn ring I ordered yesterday. I hope I have all the parts now to put the whole steering wheel together, and get rid of the other out of place one.
March 18, 2008

My dad was finally able to get the transmission to come free and out of the Jeepster without damaging it. From the pictures he sent me and from what he said, the "gunk" that is plaguing the rest of the under side of the Jeepster, is also all over the transmission and even inside of the bell housing and on the clutch areas.
 March 18, 2008

Ordered many parts from Kaiser Willys today. They should arrive around 3 days. I ordered a master clutch kit, an exhaust pipe, I really wanted the entire exhaust system, we'll see what they sent me when it arrives. I also ordered a steering wheel and a horn ring for the Jeepster. It doesn't have the horn button, so I'll have to try to find one of those somewhere. I've heard that it's next to impossible to find one. The 1948 to 1949 Jeepsters steering wheels had an optional horn ring, that I just absolutely love. I feel that it's one of the reasons that makes the Jeepster look so neat. So, I decided to go with the '49 style over the '50 style steering wheel based on aesthetics. Something, I've never done before. I've always wanted to try to keep everything as original as possible. But I can't wait to try to install the new steering wheel.
 March 14, 2008 to March 15, 2008

I haven't seen all of the progress my dad has made till we started working on it Friday afternoon. I got underneath to try to remove the transmission. We have a problem with the transmission getting stuck between the bell housing and and the X frame. No real progress Friday night. We tried many times to remove it, but it keeps getting stuck on something. We tried again on Saturday. The transmission kept rolling off of the jack, so we decided to go see if we could find a plate sat securely into the jack and bolted into the transmission to keep it from rolling. At this time, it was only stuck by about an inch or less between the frame and the bell housing hanging from the Jeepster. We didn't know if it was going to be laying on the garage floor or still stuck whenever we returned. We checked out many places, and such a plate did exist, but everyone would have to order it. But, we found something at AutoZone that might work, but it requires a 3 ton jack that we don't have. So, we went over to Sears, and they had a 3 ton jack on sale. So, I bought the jack and we went back to AutoZone to buy this transmission removal system. We got it home and started to remove the transmission again. The new jack is great, but the plate that fit into it to remove the transmission was quite large and made it hard to remove the transmission again. We tried different things, but we still couldn't get the transmission to become unstuck between the frame and the bell housing. I decided to start cleaning some of the parts while my dad continued trying different things with the transmission. The "gunk" on the parts on the bottom is amazing. It really preserved all of the metal, but is extremely hard to get off. I cleaned 2 parts and we still didn't have the transmission out when we both decided that it was too cold to work on it anymore for the night. We talked with my Uncle Mark again, he's going to make us plate that would bolt onto the transmission and sit in the floor jack.
March 10, 2008

We decided that the best idea was to replace the clutch. My dad took some pictures of underneath the transmission for documentation purposes before we remove it. He said that it doesn't look too difficult to take the transmission out. Most people take the transmission out by also taking the engine out and through the front of the car. We're going to do it by taking it out from underneath the Jeepster. Should be interesting.
March 1, 2008 to March 11, 2008

My dad has been working a lot on the Jeepster while I haven't been home. The picture to the left is the old and new rear pitman seal that he replaced. He has also been cleaning up the mysterious "under coating" that is all over the underneath of the car. Not sure what it is, but it's insanely strong and hard to take off. The problem with it is that it does not look nice, it's crumbling, and it has different things mixed into it.
February 18, 2008

My dad began inspecting underneath the Jeepster and decided to take the drive shaft out to look to see how hard it would be to replace the clutch. When he removed the drive shaft he found that the rear transmission seal was severely damaged. Not as damaged as it looks like in the picture. The one on the left was mangled whenever it was being removed. So, he went to Advanced Auto to buy a new seal and began the long process of taking it out. He had a very hard time removing the seal from the enclosure. It just wouldn't come out. The picture is the old transmission rear drive shaft seal with the new one that's going to replace it.
 February 4, 2008

My dad replaced the Parking brake cable Of course, after installing the parking brake cable my dad had to test drive the Jeepster. The poor Jeepster hasn't been driven since Thanksgiving. He said it started right up. He drove it down the drive way for some pictures of the Jeepster without using my rock that I've been using for a parking brake. I'm going to keep the rock "parking brake" even with the parking brakes working correctly. After the Jeepster passed the brake test, my dad took it around the block to test the clutch linkage parts. He adjusted the linkage until it shifted correctly. My dad decided that it still wasn't shifting correctly. So he backed it back into the garage in order to examine it more closely. Although there was enough power to drive it successfully around the block a few times, and park it back in the garage. The last time it was out, it needed pushed back into he garage, so this was a huge fix.
The old clutch linkage to compare The incredible worked on partsFebruary 3, 2008

My dad has been working on the Jeepster a lot lately. My Uncle welded and cleaned the clutch linkage parts up a while ago and they looked amazing. My dad spent the last month painting them to make them look even better. He spent the better part of the day re-installing the parts going the correct direction. Previously they were put in reverse. He used grey paint on the main parts and sprayed clear paint on all of the washers and bolts after cleaning them. They work very smoothly and looks great!
December 30, 2007

Installed the new shocks from Kaiser Willys. They went in pretty well and not too difficult. The hardest part was finding stainless steel washers to put on with them. They really stand out because all of the paint everywhere else is old, but they look really good. Hopefully they give me a better ride, the old ones were definitely worn out though. They no longer had any spring left in them. We spent most of the day working on the Jeepster, but it was well worth it.
December 23, 2007

My dad and I installed a new emergency break cable today. The old one had absolutely no movement. I was a little disappointed, but no wonder that it didn't work. Changing the break cable didn't take much time at all. Comparing the two, I'm sure applying the emergency break will be much nicer with the new cable installed.
 December 20, 2007

My dad has been working on my clutch linkage crossover bar. My Uncle Mark took the one that was on the Jeepster to work with him in order to fix it up a bit. The holes were oblonged and oval instead of being perfect circles. He's going to clean it up, weld it, and hopefully make it work and look much better. While my dad was looking at it, he found out that it was put in incorrectly. It was completely reverse what it should have been. I'm surprised I was able to drive it with it improperly installed. When we get a chance to re-install it, we'll make sure it's going the right way.
 December 10, 2007

I did a little E-Baying and found new shocks at a reasonable price, they should be delivered soon. My dad's been doing alot of looking and trying to figure out what's wrong with the power transfer. The engine revs good there's just no power back to the transmission. It might be the clutch. But he ordered some parts from Jeepster Man. Hopefully this fixes my problems, we shall see.
December 2, 2007

Our annual Christmas picture was taken today. Everyone surprised me and agreed to use the Jeepster in the picture. Less than a month old (to me) and it's already a part of the family. So, Derringer gets to drive the Jeepster, can't wait till I have it running well enough to take him for a real ride. Unfortunately, we had to push the Jeepster back into the garage because it lacked the power to get there on it's own.
 November 22, 2007

The little Jeepster is having some issues running. It's lacking much of the power it had yesterday. Barely going down and back up the driveway. So for now it's parked and not moving too fast until my dad or I get a chance to look at it. It's also over heating and leaking antifreeze, another issue that needs attention.
November 21, 2007

After washing it, and waxing it... I decided it's time for some pictures. We went up to a local church's parking lot for two really good reasons. One to get some pictures for the antique insurance, and more importantly to learn how to drive standard on the column. We took the pictures pretty quickly and then I decided to hop in and picked up shifting on the column real quick. We went around the church's parking lot five times. Then I drove my dad home, and went driving around our housing plan. I drove for 3 1/2 hours, putting 27 miles on the Jeepster and never left more than 3/4 of a mile from my parents house. Everything went pretty well. Only downside now is there's a couple of issues that really need attention.
 November 20, 2007

After going to the mechanic and getting them to sign the paper to verify the VIN, I made my way across town to AAA. I had everything I needed now and I saw the light at the end of the tunnel. One minor flaw, I went to the desk of the new girl at AAA. Have no fear though, two grueling hours later I had registered the Jeepster and had a license plate in hand. It was now legal to drive the car. At least for the next 10 days to get it inspected. Inspected? It wouldn't pass that in its current condition, maybe in 3 or 4 years, but not this one. So... I need to get it titled as an antique as soon as possible.

I arranged for a garage for it tonight, so that it doesn't need to stay in my aunt's and uncle's garage. We moved my dad's 57 Chevy over to it, and went to go pick up the Jeepster and bring it to his house. This was an adventure. It started right up, my dad driving and I being passenger, made it to the first red light without any problems. Pulling away the rear passenger break froze up and we blew lots of smoke. We pulled over and that's when I found my brand new temporary emergency breaks. Two big rocks from the near by parking lot. After the break released from just sitting there, we began our journey home with out any more troubles. We parked it in the garage and I started washing it. I can't believe it has so much sand on it, but then again it is from New Mexico and Texas. I'll work on it more in the morning.
 November 19, 2007

I went to AAA in Greensburg, in order to register our car. I can't believe how hard it is to register a car in Pennsylvania that was titled in another state. The cars 57 years old. All I needed was a license plate... that's it. This sounds much easier than what I ever imagined. The people at AAA, although very polite, did not understand the perplexity of what they are asking me to do in order to register the Jeepster. Everything was going well, I had all the papers, but they didn't trust the VIN that was on the valid Title from New Mexico. They must have something against that state, to be that cautious over the VIN number. They needed to physically see the VIN or have me drive the vehicle to an authorized mechanic to verify the VIN. Now... here's why their request is absolutely illegal. I was there to obtain a license plate when I registered the car. Legally the car can not be driven anywhere. So bringing the car to the local AAA is ruled out and following closely behind is taking the car to a mechanic. I explained my dilemma and they did not understand why the car did not come to a plate. I would've thought they would understand that you're not supposed to sell a car and leave your plate on it. After twenty or so minutes wasted on my plea for them to just register the car, I decided to admit defeat and allowing them to win the battle. For I know that I plan to return tomorrow to win the war and get the Jeepster a plate and registered.

My dad had a great plan. I'll look for the VIN number, take a picture of it, and take it to our family mechanic for verification. This also was easier said than done. My dad and I went to my aunt's and uncle's house to seek the illusive VIN plate. I read on a website that the plate was located under the dash near the glove box. So he looked all over for it and finally found it directly under the over hang on the top of the dash. We took quite a few photos and had some really nice ones that showed the VIN. Tomorrow's going to be lots of fun traveling to the mechanics then back to AAA.
November 17, 2007

Carina and I finally get a chance to see our little Jeepster. We went home to my aunt's and uncle's house with my dad to check it out. I think our first words were "Wow!". Carina crawled in to drive and I took the big back seat. Overall, the car is in better shape than expected. It definitely needs a lot, but it's a great solid start. What's really funny is there still sand in the interior of the car. There's not really any rust either, which is a really good sign. The last inspection sticker is from 1972 issued by Texas. I hope it stays on the windshield for quite some time, tells a pretty good story that the car was indeed in Texas for quite some time. I bought the car from Jim who's from Carlsbad, NM, not far from El Paso to the west, and Roswell to the north. Apparently he got the Jeepster from a swap meet in Dallas, TX. So this verifies that the car is definitely from the way south. Kinda neat. Carina's first impressions about the Jeepster were definitely positive and she thought that it was really different. She's ecstatic about the body style. The feelings about the Jeepster are mutual. I'm hoping the car shines up after it gets washed and a good wax job. The driver's side headlight cover is missing because when my dad was going to drive it to my aunt's and uncle's house, he noticed that it was loose. While he fidgeted with it, the bracket inside broke off. Not a major thing, and looks like it's definitely reparable. But the car looks great, and we can't wait to drive it.
November 14, 2007

The Jeepster finally made it to my parents house. Arriving in style, on board a large truck, that came right into the neighborhood. It was delivered early in the morning and my dad took plenty of pictures for me. Boy does it look great! I can't wait until Carina and I can see it in person. My dad took delivery at the house, took some quick pictures before the rain came, and drove it to my aunt's and uncle's house until I'm able to find a more permanent place to store it. I feel bad, my aunt's car is sitting outside of the garage and we're supposed to get some rain and possible snow. Well, the next step to look for somewhere to put it more permanently. I also need to transfer the title and get insurance for it. We're going home in a few days to see it and spend a week with our families over Thanksgiving. Should provide a little time to spend with it and clean the Jeepster up.
 October 29, 2007

After many changes to my delivery order and negotiations, I finally have an auto shipper to deliver the Jeepster to Greensburg. I decided to use DAS - Dependable Auto Shippers. The price kept going up, while the shipping accommodations kept getting nicer. The Jeepster will be completely covered, pampered, dry, safe, and most importantly on it's way... as soon as it's given to a load. And that could take from the next couple of days to November 23rd. I hope it's sooner than later. I'm still excited!
 October 25, 2007

It's the big day. Jim's son just called me to tell me that he just posted the car on E-Bay with a buy it now price. I logged on, and clicked . And seconds later, Carina and I were proud owners of a "new" 1950 Willys Overland Jeepster. How exciting! Next step was PayPal. I put a down payment on it, and the Jeepster was really Carina's and mine. After that, I used PayPal to pay off the rest of the balance and the Jeepster was Carina's and mine. Very Exciting Day! Next step is finding a shipper. It just amazes me that you can buy a car off of the internet, without ever seeing it in person or meeting the seller. Paying for it w/ no "real" people involved. Just incredible.
 October 24, 2007

Carina and I decided to make what I considered a pretty decent offer for the red Jeepster. I called Jim up in the early morning, and by later that night, we came to an agreement for the Jeepster. Jim's going to post the Jeepster back on E-Bay for me so that I can have the buyers protection that E-Bay offers. We also agreed to use PayPal in order to transfer the money. Carina and are very excited and can't wait to see the Jeepster!
October 23, 2007

The new pictures of the Jeepster were sitting in my Inbox when I checked after work. I was very excited. As soon as I downloaded them, I started studying them and had to share them with my family and friends. So I uploaded them for everyone to see. Carina fell in love with the car a little bit more, and we decided to wait till tomorrow to make our decision. It should be an interesting day.
 October 19, 2007

Carina and I thought some more about the Jeep. We would really like to buy it, but it's just not the right time for another car in our family. Considering I already had my 1977 Chevelle that my Grandparents gave to me when I was very young, her Jeep, and my Envoy. We decided how much we could afford to pay for the Jeepster and thought about making an offer for it. I decided to give Jim another call and tell him that we interested in it, but we'd like to see more pictures of it. Our only view of the Jeepster was from E-Bay. Jim agreed to send me new pictures via his son through e-mail, but he wouldn't be able to do that till Monday. That's ok, I'll just have to wait and it gives me more time to think if I want to offer him a number for the car.
 October 16, 2007

Using Google as my search engine, I kept searching on the internet and found a pretty nice red one. It was on E-Bay from way back in August. What was really strange was that it was posted on the French E-Bay and I couldn't read it. So I copied E-Bay listing number into the English E-Bay and I was able to read about the little red Jeepster. I found this
Ebay listing: 230161640109. It was for red 1950 Willys Jeepster. I was pretty excited and started to read about it. Some details about the car:
Location: Carlsbad, New Mexico
Engine: 6 cylinder
Exterior / Interior: Red / White
There was a phone number listed, so I just had to call and find out more information. And to my surprise and delight, the car was still for sale. I began talking to Jim about the car and learned many things about it. It had new convertible top, carpeting, and tires, the carburetor was rebuilt, no rust, and the original 6 cylinder engine with overdrive. It was restored 20 years ago and needs a new paint job and the transmission needs some attention. It has aluminum side curtains that he's not sure how they go on the car, but they go with it. And he doesn't need to sell it, and if he doesn't, he'll try to again next spring. We didn't talk too much on the phone, but I was definitely excited. He told me to make him a fair offer and he'd consider selling the Jeepster to me. I went home and told Carina all about it, she started looking at it on E-Bay as well.
 October 13, 2007 - October 15, 2007

We talked the entire way home about how neat it would be to get an old Jeepster in the future. We arrived home from Hershey, unpacked, and I was ready to start researching about the first era Jeepsters. I was researching all kinds of things with them. What was original, what did they come with, were there any options, all sorts of stuff. My whole mission was to learn as much about them as fast as I could. I couldn't believe how much information there were on old Jeeps. And, the more I read about them, the more I shared my new knowledge with Carina, and the more we both fell in love with the Jeepster. I thought that I'd begin to poke around and I started to find quite a few old Jeepsters for sale at what I thought was a pretty reasonable price. So I started comparing them and thought that I'd call about a few of the cars and find out if they were still for sale. To my astonishment almost all of them had sold. Not a big deal, I'm sure that eventually I'll find a nice one for sale.
 October 13, 2007

It's the main event at the Hershey car show, it's show day. Carina and I walked around looking at cars with my dad, my Uncle Mark, and Tom. We were having lots of fun looking at some really neat cars. Carina was walking over to re-fill her mug with some cream soda when she spotted yet another
1950 Jeepster. This one was our favorite color red. She insisted that I check it out and she dragged all of us over to see it. Of course it was in impeccable condition. And I could see Carina once again swooning over another Jeepster. She looked at it for over an hour , not wanting to leave it. The little Jeepster was getting plenty of attention from everyone that was walking by. The picture to the left has Carina, Don Allen (family friend from Florida, in the red hat), and my Uncle Mark (in the green hat) all admiring the gorgeous red 1950 Willys Jeepster on the show field.
 October 12, 2007

It's October again and that only means one thing... well car related that is! HERSHEY! The annual outing across to the other side of the state. Although this year Carina and I are living in Scranton, PA, so our trek was much less this year than previous. We met up with the guys from Greensburg, PA, my dad, Tom, and my Uncle Mark for a weekend of fun. The day was unusually nice, if anyone knows Hershey, they know to prepare for rain. It was actually pretty warm outside. There were a lot of people and tons of cars. We decided to go through the car corral first. We went down a few rows and saw lots of nice cars for sale. Then we came upon a yellow 1949 Jeepster. Carina was in love. I just had one big smile on my face that she took an such a great interest into old cars. So we looked at it for several minutes. Then we walked a little further and saw 2 more yellow 1949 Willys Jeepsters for sale. Again, we had to stop so she could examine them closely. She said that she really wanted one some day. Here's Carina standing by one of the Jeepsters that she really wanted!
 September 2, 2007

Carina and I attended the Western Pennsylvania Region, A.A.C.A. Annual Car Show at Legion Keener Park in Latrobe, PA. I've attended the car show every year since '93 after my dad bought a harbor blue '57 Chevy and joined the car club. I later became a member and enjoy helping out with the car show and especially with the judging. Today, my fiancé, Carina, spotted a 1950 Willys Jeepster that really caught her eye. It was yellow with black upper trim and looked really sharp. She paid special attention to it because she absolutely loves Jeeps of all kinds. It even took 2nd place in it's class at the car show. I knew that she really liked it. While we were sitting on a picnic bench watching the cars coming up for their awards, I told her that maybe someday we'll own one. Wouldn't that be neat!