Use the right tool and use it correctly. Get'r dun!

Use the right tool and use it correctly. Get’r dun!

Never use a wrench which fits the nut poorly. This practice batters nuts and spreads wrenches. Use correct size wrench. Look at all the tools the well-equipped Motor Vehicle Mechanic would have in his toolbox in WW2.



Imagine a time where you could be a comedian and not have to swear.  Laurel and Hardy drive a “jeep”. This movie was made just as jeeps were being introduced to the Army.  Since none were available to the movie industry–the move industry made their own.
Some would say that the jeep was an evolutionary vehicle stemming from types originally produced for WWI.  However those vehicles were large slow and cumbersome.  Even by WW2 most 4×4 vehicles were too large too serve as reconnaissance vehicles.  Producing a 1/4-ton vehicle with 4×4 capability was quite revolutionary.  That’s why the US Army and the allies were so pleased with it.  You can read more about the revolutionary story in the following two books.  The first one, Jeep – Its development and procurement under the Quartermaster Corps, 1940-1942, was actually written during WW2 and is a great perspective on the jeep. The second really good book is call, Project Management in History: The First Jeep (Project Management in History Series) (Volume 1), is a book about project management…but don’t let that put you off.  The book is a great retelling of the Bantam story and how they produced the first jeep for the US Army to test. The Chief of Infantry in 1941 was satisfied with it.  However, because Bantam was a very weak company the government felt a stronger producer was needed.  Ford was the first choice but Willys was the low bidder and the rest is history.

Ford Pygymy

The Ford Pygmy-Pilot Model

When I bought my first jeep in 1980 I had no idea that both Ford and Willys built jeeps for the war effort during WW2. Ford attempted to win the original production contract by producing the Ford Pygmy jeep. The Ford Pygmy survived US Army testing and was returned to the manufacturer.  The pilot resided in the Ford museum until it was sold to a collector.  The collector in turn donated it to the Veterans Memorial Museum in Huntsville, AL.

WW2 Pilot Model–The Ford Pygmy.   Explore just about every inch of the Ford pilot

WW2 Pilot - The Ford PygmyWW2 Pilot – The Ford Pygmy

Pygmy in photographs and essay. This is one of only two of the original “jeep” pilots known to have survived through today. The other is the Budd bodied Ford pilot. The author had full access to the jeeps in the Veterans Memorial Museum of Huntsville, Alabama. The Ford pilot is an amazing vehicle. See the engine, inside the body and underneath. Tons of detail.

I thank you for your military service. You can obtain copies of your military records...

For those of you have served, I thank you for your military service. You can obtain copies of your military records…

This post isn’t really about military vehicles but some may still find it helpful.

Have you misplaced your DD214 or retirement orders? Well thru http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/ you can request copies. They tell you it can take many months to obtain the records but when I tried it, it only took about a month if that long.

It is run through the National Archives & Records Administration (NARA). You give your name, service branch, component, social security number, place of birth, service number, if applicable and approximate date you left the service. You also may have to tell them if you were an Officer or Enlisted, depending on when you served.

This can also be used to obtain “next of kin” records but I think they delete personal information like Social Security Numbers. reenlistment codes, discharge type, etc.

It is oriented toward “separation” doc requests but you can ask for more. “If information or documents other than a Report of Separation are needed, please indicate here what you require.” So I guess you could ask for performance reports, awards and decorations, etc.

Once you submit the online form you print out a “voucher” of sorts. This is signed by the veteran and mailed in. This is the way they confirm that the requester is legit–or as best they can.

It was a pretty cool experience. I received my retirement order, officer DD214 and enlisted DD214, 2 copies each and these had a seal affixed to them “to attest to its authenticity.”

Army Jill takes aim at some Axis troops. There’s really not much else to say. Also, notice the 42 Ford GPW in the background!

Well, Bunky, say it isn’t so!  If it is true then this is what you are looking at…
Noise in Low Gear (causes/solutions):
  • Rear Ball Bearing Broken, Replace
  • Gear Teeth Pitted or Worn, Replace Gears
  • Shifting Fork Bent, Replace
  • Lack of Lubrication, Drain and Refill
Is your T-84 jeep transmission making noise or not working right? Then read on...
Is your T-84 jeep transmission making noise or not working right? Then read on…

transmissionbookMy tranny used to be noisy. Turns out the cluster gear was hosed.  It had chunks of gear missing but it kept on ticking!

I don’t think of my rebuilt tranny as being noisy now. It’s never going to be as quiet as a Caddie but it is tolerable.

You can work on the T-84J transmission yourself, it is really pretty easy.  I wrote a book to help you.  It uses information that I learned along the way.  The book has a lot of pictures showing me doing a rebuild and also includes information from the original manuals.  Check it out…Trouble Shooting And Rebuilding The T-84J.

I just hate it when my combat wheels come apart unexpectedly! Be sure to torque your wheels appropriately.

Are those even words? I just hate it when my combat wheels come apart unexpectedly! Be sure to torque your wheels appropriately.

When you put your combat rims together you should use a torque wrench and set the bolt to 60-70 ft. lbs..


Torque your wheels together properly!

Torque your wheels together properly!

Combat wheels are identified by eight bolts holding together the two halves of the tire rim. When removing a tire, first remove the wheel and be sure to deflate the tire before removing the rim nuts. After removing the rim nuts, remove the outer rim nuts, remove the outer rim then remove the tire after which remove the beard locking ring and tube from the tire.  Mounting the tire is the reverse procedure.  Do not put too much air in the tube when mounting.

From TM 10-1513  Change No. 1, May 15, 1942.  You can find the manual, Maintenance Manual, Willys MB: TM 10-1513 at Amazon.com.

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