After finishing the restoration of my Army jeep, I started looking for another project. I found a Navy “slat grill” jeep built on January 2, 1942. I bought the jeep and towed it home on September 13, 2003.
This jeep looks great, but what I didn’t realize at the time was that it was covered with a thick layer of Bondo which concealed
major damage and rust. It would be a much bigger project than I had anticipated.
My first task was to remove the Bondo. Then I bought a MIG welder and began to learn how to repair sheet metal.
Out comes the motor! Rebuilding the motor was
the most challenging aspect of this restoration. I had never done it before, but what a great learning experience!
The rear frame and cross member was badly damaged and required new metal and some serious welding.
I replaced rusty and damaged panels on both sides of the jeep, the floor, replaced the tank well and side steps. My welding
improved as the project went on.
Wow, this frame is looking good! Note the shiny new break lines.I rebuilt my transmission and replaced the seals in the transfer case.
The project is coming along nicely. I love seeing how old metal can be repaired and renewed.
I painted the tub with a flat Navy gray. Next comes the wiring (much easier to do with the tub off the frame).
When installing the jeep tub on the frame, I recommend getting help from your neighbors. Watch out for the steering column and the wiring.
On the last day of 2011, I drove the jeep out of the driveway for the first time and went on a test drive. The 8 and 1/2 year project was nearly complete.
I marked the hood “U.S. Navy” and add “Shore Patrol” to the windscreen. Note the Federal siren! It will be used in parades!
I showed off my jeep at the Military Vehicles Preservation Association Convention which our Military Vehicle Collectors Club of Oregon hosted in Portland (July 2013).
Although I have not served in the military, I am privileged to represent and honor the men and women who serve in the U.S. armed forces whenever I drive my jeep in a parade. Thank you for your service, veterans!
The Laney family jeep was built by Ford and delivered to the Army on May 29, 1944. It may have been used on an Army post or National Guard unit somewhere on the west coast, perhaps Fort Lewis. My dad purchased the jeep on March 12, 1967 for $500 from Billy Swaim of Portland.
For the next four years I drove it during my student days at the University of Oregon. My brothers took over the jeep when I left home and each of them enjoyed driving our family jeep. After they left home my dad stored the jeep for some years and then towed it to my home in Portland where I enjoyed taking my children on jeep rides. But the jeep stopped running and was just taking up space in my garage when I discovered a web site that featured restored military jeeps. That sparked my interest! With the blessing of my wife, I began restoring the vehicle back to its’ original military configuration. I never dreamed what a big project this would be or how much fun I would have working on my jeep. The jeep is “parade ready” and I enjoying driving and showing it to honor the men and women serving in the United States military.
I am the proud owner of two World War II military jeeps which have given me a great deal of satisfaction and pleasure in restoring and driving these vintage vehicles.
I enjoy jeeps because they are the classic trucks used by the American soldiers who fought and defeated the enemy during the Second World War. When I am working on a jeep or driving my restored jeep I feel a sense of patriotic pride in our armed forces and what American soldiers, sailors and flyers have done to secure and maintain the freedoms we enjoy in this country. When I drive my jeep with my American flag waving, I’m giving a one jeep salute to those who have served and are presently serving our country.
I hope you enjoy looking at my jeeps. And if you come by on a sunny day, I’d be happy to crank her up and give you a ride. Click on the pictures below to learn more about each of my jeeps.
This 1944 WWII jeep has been in our family since 1967. I drove the jeep during my college days and my wife and I dated in this jeep when it was painted blue and had a white vinyl top. In 1997 I began restoring my jeep to its’ original military configuration. I enjoy driving the jeep in parades to honor our veterans.
After completing the restoration of my Army jeep, I began looking for another project. I found this early WWII slat grill jeep and began a complete restoration in 2003. I finished the project and drove it for the first time on December 31, 2011. I restored it as a Navy Shore Patrol jeep to honor my dad who was a Navy aviator and my son who is a Navy Commander.