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-   -   1949 Willys Wagon Build (https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1135754)

49willys_mogon 02-02-2013 09:11 AM

1949 Willys Wagon Build

The Willys Jeep Station Wagon was introduced in 1946 as just the 463 model, powered by the L-134 Go-Devil flathead four cylinder. The 663 model, powered by the L-148 Lightning straight six, was brought in for 1948. Four-wheel drive became an option in 1949. This wagon is a 4x463 SW one of 4472 produced in that year.

Originally owned a 1955 wagon in high school and updated the stock 226 t-90 and dana18 with warn OD to a chevy 283 T400 with the AA kit for the dana 18. I have 25+ years experience around Willys projects and in no way am I an expert but I do have opinions.

Since then my project ebbed and flowed into what you will see in the following threads. As you all can probably relate to the hang time a full frame up restoration can take, this one is no exception.

My intentions for the build are one low COG and two keep it a sleeper as much as possible. Not a purist by any stretch, I just love clean factory lines and strived to keep them intact. There are also many subtle upgrades to the body to address water and air entering as these wagons constantly leaked exhaust fumes into the cabin and were musty smelling. I always dreaded getting in my wagon in the cold early morning because it took 20 minutes to defog the windows. This was due to all the gaps in the hinges, uneven body panels, cowl vent, sliding window and poorly designed weatherstripping.

I decided to mix and match my 1949 and early 50's bodies to get the best of both worlds of sleeper/function. I prefer the early 50's grill/fenders and the last year of the round wheel well 1949. The project utilized two bodies to create 1 in order to fit the 404's and 37' ~ 40" treads. I started by cutting the body in half and widening 10" and stretching the doors 4".

Functionally I'm running an old school 383 stroker, Accel DFI, Hogans sheetmetal manifold, H1 4L80E 242AMG, and 404 axles. More on this later.

There are many lessons I have learned working in this industry and there is a wealth of knowledge on this site and I salute my fellow craftsmen, journeymen and shop owners for their visual and mechanical contributions.

God Bless America!

MrWillys 02-02-2013 09:22 AM

I tried fix it for you, but still can't see it.

49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 01:07 AM

Don't Let the Sun Go Down on your Willy's
Here's a Beer can from Willys America.


Refer to the classic movie The Fugitive Kind starring Brando for interpretation of this title phrase. IMO much better than the Wild One...Besides there's a scene of an early Willy's Wagon in it.

49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 01:29 AM

This is a body I found in Fresno on ebay. I was getting ready to leave work on a friday and decided to randomly check to see if there were any willys stuff on ebay. Next thing I now I'm driving 4 hours to Fresno at 5am to decide if I want to bid on this thing before the auction ends at noon that Sat. Glad I did it was a two owner (lived across the street from one another) factory 226 4x4 t-90 D18 specimen. Still had the original paint on the inside and was is great condition before I took it to get dipped...So I thought...The floors just melted away...To this day I consider this a barn find and was a good enough foundation to build this project around.




49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:15 AM


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:18 AM

The Headless Wagon.
This was an Obama supporter.


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:25 AM

Nip and Tuck
Plumbers crack



This shot shows the 10" cut out of the roof and the square tube jig set up to allow the two halves slide over one another estimating the 37" tires for clearance. To achive the full 10" I needed to cut the wheel wells, tailgate, upper tailgate, firewall and floors 5" on each half and graft patch panels from the Obama supporter.


View from drivers side door of jig showing the cowl and doors getting ready to stretch.





49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:27 AM

Nip and Tuck
Starting the roof patch panels.


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:33 AM

Nip and Tuck
Stretching the drivers/pass doors 4" and adding the patch panels from the Obama supporter.





Believe it or not now all the windows on the sides are the same dimension. Go figure.


Thinking of adapting the H3 rear passengers power window where the original rear sliders were. My co workers H3 looks real close. Notoriously leaky spot here. The factory set up an elaborate gutter system and drain pipe and threw in a wheel well for grins. These days the Establishment would give you a Nobel Peace Prize and Consolation Law degree from a prestigious university for that kind of claptrap.

49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:35 AM

Nip and Tuck

Trial fitting the crawlers.



49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:36 AM

Nip and Tuck
Added 5" to either side of the headlamps. Courtesy panels from the Obama supporter.



49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:42 AM

Nip and Tuck

49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:51 AM

Nip and Tuck
This is the trifecta seam trouble spot.




49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:53 AM

Nip and Tuck
Filling in the section over the windshield...


...over the tailgate.

outriggers and misc supports






49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 02:57 AM

Nip and Tuck
Trouble spot no more. The cowls are the source of rotten floors in these old wagons due to the surface to surface of the flange of the vent. Not sure if the heat caused by the sun or oxidation of the rubber wears out the gasket. When driving in the rain the water jet effect comes in like an enema off the windshield and accumulates behind the carpet and is the source of that musty smell.



49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 03:04 AM

Nip and Tuck
Here is the new firewall.


Even after sending these hood hinges to get bushed (not in as Bushs fault) they were not worthy to lift the weight of new hood and internal stainless supports. After a long search ended up fabbing up my own based on another street rod design.


The factory Willy's hinges are not that stable for a stock application. We tried many vintage stock and street rod hinges and ended up adapting this concept to swing away from the firewall for my application milled from billet.




This is a factory GM truck swing pedal with hydroboost I picked up at a wrecking yard. Adapted it to fit by integrating it into the hinge support. Its nice knowing that your truck parts are compatible with your trail rig.





49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 03:10 AM

Nip and Tuck
Added 5" from the hood of the Obama supporter.



Updated factory sheetmetal supports with stainless. The originals rusted out the hoods by the hinge mounts and were prone to stretching.




49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 04:22 AM

Nip and Tuck
Roof filled in with a donor from an Obama donor 70's era station wagon. The sheet metal variations of new material vs. vintage required this selection of material. The hammer butt weld is 27feet long which wraps around the circumference of the 10" section front to back.


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 04:29 AM

Nip and tuck
On to the floors.



The original dash is tacked in and getting ready for 5" patch panels.









49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 04:32 AM

Nip and Tuck
Finalizing the tailgate. Stainless hinges top and bottom. If you look closely at the top of the hinge there is no more factory air conditioning duct.


RIP Hoop BG : Gone Home - Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder - YouTube


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 04:34 AM

Time to get some Air


49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 04:40 AM

Let's Go Moggin
Here's the body on the scissor lift with the 404's mocked up. 118" wheel base.



Looking to do a single ended ram and work on these BTF HI steer plates a bit. There are some nice D60 pieces floating around pirate that give me direction.


Thinking cantilever...ORI struts a dash of Todd Littles buggy bell crank and viola 19" of goodness.


LS6 Jeep TJ on 40's - YouTube


Last but not least...Ordered these from Wolfie and Danny aka Killeraxles fame. Can I say killer headache. Ordered them with CTIS for my H1 wheels...Came with no CTIS...and came with some other funk bolt pattern other than H1 hummer...Found that out after fabbing up my wheel spacers...Then customs almost confiscated them because the address didn't match where the final destination was. That was almost as bad as the last election and or better than buying a car from a Detroit plant made on a friday. I'm thinking of the cornfield towards the end of the movie Casino.


larryboy 02-05-2013 08:54 AM

You have one strange sense of humor, but I dig the wagon!!


73FJ 02-05-2013 07:22 PM

wow! I thought I was ambitious.......you win. Nice work! :evil:

49willys_mogon 02-05-2013 10:54 PM

73FJ: I was admiring your work over the weekend when I was trying to set up my thread. Exceptional sheetmetal work my friend.

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