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M38-a1 Vs Cj5 Identification Help

Discussion in 'Early CJ5 and CJ6 Tech' started by Jonbbrew, Apr 3, 2020.

  1. Apr 3, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
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    Hello all,

    I’m trying to figure out my Frankenstein Jeep as it’s registered as a 63’ CJ5 But I am learning, thanks to others on another post I had, that at least some of it is a M38-a1.
    I’m trying to figure out if the entire tub, frame, etc. is a M38 or anything else I can to understand what i have and what direction to take it as I source other parts, and looks. What differences, measurements, etc. can I look for to investigate?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Apr 3, 2020
    53A1

    53A1 Member

    Kern Co. Ca.
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    A1 tub will have an open battery box with a cover, dog bowl size dish on P.Side just behind front fender and no tail gate and glove box on Dr. Side of dash. Frame has boxed frame horns up front, machine gun mount on rear cross member. '53 and earlier front fenders have the seam exposed where the pieces meet and supports to hold fenders to frame. Later fenders have sheet metal over the seam. '53 and earlier have hinges for the front grill to fold down. A1 engine will have an MDXXXX serial number on block above water pump, 24v stuff, massive generator, massive regulator next to starter and a huge cable between them. Carb has a bend at the inlet and water proof plug wires and distributor. And almost forgot, windshield is two piece split down the middle with latch on front to hold hood when it's up and hood has shovel mount on the underside and removable fording piece on side. Grill has sunken headlights, black out lights on fender and rear. Spare time mount on PS rear with a reflector mounted in the middle of the spare. Post pics.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2020
  3. Apr 3, 2020
    PeteL

    PeteL Member 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Hills of NH
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    X2.

    Also brass data plates on passenger dash, and behind passenger seat. Gas tank has deep well in floor and oversized fill tube. Parking brake is between seats.
     
  4. Apr 3, 2020
    garage gnome

    garage gnome Rust polisher

    Western MA
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    Reversed front shackles, removable gauge cluster, battery box in the cowl.
     
  5. Apr 3, 2020
    colojeepguy

    colojeepguy Colorado Springs 2019 Sponsor

    At the foot of...
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    used-jeep-willys-m38a1-1953-43660867_1_l.jpg
    Here's a good picture of the recess in the side of the body, this is probably the most obvious difference in the tub.
     
  6. Apr 3, 2020
    mickeykelley

    mickeykelley Well-Known Member

    Republic of Texas
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    What was that dish on the passenger side for?
     
  7. Apr 3, 2020
    ojgrsoi

    ojgrsoi Retired. 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Weatherford, TX
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    Slave cable to jump start.
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Apr 3, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
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    E5DB54AB-B967-4DF8-A02D-9A9060BE13F2.jpeg
    I don’t have that.
     
  9. Apr 3, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
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    6A212ABD-5887-4DA7-B1E7-3E6F1DDE0DDC.jpeg
    Battery box lid that doesn’t come off but it’s not just a mold/pressed metal. 6A212ABD-5887-4DA7-B1E7-3E6F1DDE0DDC.jpeg
     
  10. Apr 3, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
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    0FC3EE78-C950-43CF-B951-12C75B2B8861.jpeg A1ADC28B-D3D9-4FF9-ADD4-04062F6C4395.jpeg
    I’m thinking the tub is a CJ5 but the fenders M38-a1 2nd Gen, and the Grill 1st gen, but not sure about the hood.

    also thinking the windshield frame might also be a M38-a1 but they replaced the glass to one piece (unless there is a metal separator in the split window frame and not just rubber as that would make it something else.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2020
  11. Apr 5, 2020
    53A1

    53A1 Member

    Kern Co. Ca.
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    Tub is CJ. Definitely the grill is '52 or '53 A1. Those two holes at the upper corners of the windshield had a bracket for the cloth top rods so the windshield is A1. Hard to tell from the pics but it may have boxed frame horns and solid spring hangers up front and that would make the frame A1. Does it have the machine gun mount? Look under the hood and there should be a place to mound and L shaped bracket for the shovel. A1 also had a larger steering box I think same size as the CJ5 w/ V6 but you have PS. If you want to know about the fenders the DS fender will have three holes on the top for the blackout light. If they covered them you should still see the holes from the bottom.

    Your Jeep with the mods you have is more capable and looks good so I'd leave it as is. Looks like you have dual exhaust... V6? I would buy or fab up the fording cover for the hood and get look for some rings to go over the front lenses. It would be useful to carry the shovel under the hood and that bracket is easy to find.
     
  12. Apr 5, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
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    THANK YOU!,

    Boxed Frame Horns and Solid Spring Hangers? Do you have pics of these for me to reference?

    What/where is the machine gun mount?

    I will look under hood for shovel but i dont think so.
     
  13. Apr 5, 2020
    OldAdobe

    OldAdobe Member 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    N. CA
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    20200405_173127_copy_907x510.jpg
    These pictures are from my rig. I think that's a gun mount, see above plate with holes. Someone please confirm these as accurate.

    20200405_173201_copy_907x1612.jpg
    Front frame with solid spring hanger.

    20200405_173341_copy_907x1612.jpg
    Shovel bracket, above.
     
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  14. Apr 5, 2020
    PeteL

    PeteL Member 2020 Sponsor 2019 Sponsor

    Hills of NH
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    The crossmember just behind the seats has a steel plate under the tub floor, dead center. Like OldAdobe's pic.

    Do an image search on bing for m38A1 details.

    You might find this site useful. M38A1.COM - Model Differences between years and variants.
     
  15. Apr 5, 2020
    Oldriginal86

    Oldriginal86 Member

    Pasadena, Md.
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  16. Apr 5, 2020
    53A1

    53A1 Member

    Kern Co. Ca.
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    IMG_05042020_174959_(1200_x_1200_pixel).jpg IMG_05042020_174858_(1200_x_1200_pixel).jpg IMG_05042020_175237_(1200_x_1200_pixel).jpg IMG_05042020_175249_(1200_x_1200_pixel).jpg IMG_05042020_175313_(1200_x_1200_pixel).jpg
     
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  17. Apr 5, 2020
    53A1

    53A1 Member

    Kern Co. Ca.
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    This is a cool thread. I went out into my treasure trove and uncovered an A1 frame. as you can see the machine gun mount is the square plate with four holes OldAdobe posted an interesting picture of the front frame horns. I didn't know they made a model w/o the oval cutout. Learn something new every day. The fender shots give you and idea of where the bolt holes are located. The PS fender has two bolt holes for the fording attachment and the DS fender has three bolt holes for the BO light.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2020
  18. Apr 5, 2020
    Keys5a

    Keys5a Sponsor

    Florida Keys
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    The windshield frames are nearly identical between the CJ5 and M38A1. I think there are two threaded holes on the drivers side plenum box that was used to mount the vacuum wiper switch, but most telling is the shape of the soft top channel along the top front edge of the frame. The civillian frame has the channel follow the arc of the frame, whereas the A1 channel has a more pronounced arc with the ends drooping lower than the center, reletive the the top edge.
    Fenders from the A1 will have threaded holes on the top outer surface for mounting the BO light on the drivers side, and threaded holes adjacent to the fording cover.
    To answer jonbbrew's question, I think the only thing M38A1 on your Jeep is and early military grill assembly. All the rest looks to be consistent with a '63 Willys CJ5.
    -Donny
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2020
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  19. Apr 7, 2020
    scott milliner

    scott milliner Master Fabricator

    Seattle Wa.
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    Am I the only one with a shovel?
    [​IMG]
     
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  20. Apr 7, 2020
    Jonbbrew

    Jonbbrew Member

    Paso Robles, CA
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    296777DD-6FD3-42F1-BC07-EC5F1824AE0A.jpeg DAB305D8-F429-464A-BCD4-4B93CCEBDE74.jpeg
    Thank you. I’m also needing to figure out if a CJ5 tub is different length than a M38 as my frame does not match up with the back of my tub. The tub hangs over a few inches. I’ve been trying to figure that out as well for several years.
     

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