Greetings, fellow Willys-Lovers

Zimbie

Gear Grinder
Mar 7, 2011
7
Willys Model
Willys Year:
Hello All;
My name is Bob, and I am an old car-aholic. My first car was a 1952 2WD Willys Wagon that I purchased for $250 in 1973. Despite the cracked block between the #4 and #5 exhaust valves in its F-head Six, I kept it running for a few years before I sold it, learned just a bit about car repair, and have some fond memories from my high school years in that wagon. (I also owned a second 2WD Wagon sometime later, low and behold it had a block crack in the same spot on its F-head Six - there may be a weakness here...)

We jump forward 30+ years, I'm wrapping up the frame-off restoration of a British GT sportscar, and I start looking around for the next car project... why not relive my youth with a third Willys Wagon? My wife had never seen or heard of one, but I get the OK with "Honey, we can put the dogs in the back and go on a family picnic!" and start the search. We eventually found "Harvey", as my wife has named him. He is a very original 1962 L6-226 4x4 wagon, complete with a hundred-plus pounds of factory PTO winch hanging off the front of him. (The Wagons have so much extra power and steer and brake so well - why not hang an additional 150 pounds of iron out front? ;))

Now it's almost 2 years later, and Harvey is my everyday driver! I have repaired or rebuilt almost everything mechanical, replaced the winch with a Saturn OD, and left the wonderful patina of his original President Red paint and "shattered glass/twisted bamboo" fabric interior pretty much alone (OK, a new headliner). We just crossed 12,000 miles added under my care, the dogs love him, the wife loves him, strangers approach us on the street to talk about the car...

"Excuse me - exactly what is it?"
"That is the coolest car I have ever seen!" (I've gotten this one many times from kids and teenagers)
"My grandfather drove across the country in one of those, sleeping in the back"
"There's that wonderful flathead six"
"I used to have one of those! I wish I hadn't sold it"

Well, you all know the joys of Willy-ing, so I'll close with revealing my Harvey project for next weekend: wringing just a bit more stopping power out of his 11" drum brakes with a remote vacuum brake booster and a proportioning valve to stop the rear wheels from locking up first. (I just can't bring myself to grind his Dana 25 knuckles and change the rims for the disc brake conversions I read about...)

Nice to be here, folks - Zimbie Bob
 
Welcome Bob, great story...

Pete
 
Those are great memories and the best thing....to be continued. Welcome to the forum.
 
Welcome, I call those winch bumpers, 55 MPH BUMPERS, higher speed rating than those flimsy 5 mph found on cars since 1973 - 1974.
 
"I just can't bring myself to grind his Dana 25 knuckles and change the rims for the disc brake conversions"

EXTHELLENT! :D
 
Bob,

Welcome to the forum!

Those statements you have heard over the years are great. Looking forward to getting em myself....

Thanks for finding us. Now lets see some pics...


Eric
 
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