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Art Anderson

1944 Ford GPW Jeep

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It's been a good while since I posted up any pics of this one, and I don't see the "search feature", so I'll start a new thread on the subject, with current pics.  Most are aware that Jeeps were begun by American Bantam in 1940, but with the sudden, emergency expansion of our US military starting in 1941, Bantam was too small, and in far to shaky financial condition to carry forward--so the US War Department (Army) transferred all drawings, and all production to Willys-Overland in Toledo, Ohio in early 1941.  While Willys was bigger, and more financially solid than Bantam when WW-II began in earnest for the US, bigger factories were required for the expected mass-production of what was then officially called a "Truck, 1/4 ton, Four-Wheel Drive", so Ford Motor Company was called upon to hep break the "logjam".  Ford started production of Jeeps in early 1942, and quickly added their own detail which sped up assembly--that being the substitution of the Bantam-designed, and Willys-continued, multiple piece tubular front frame crossmember.  More than likely, For's production boss, Loren Sorensen and metal stamping guru, Joseph "Sheet Metal Joe" Galamb, in creating a new one-piece front crossmember--a "hat-section" channel steel unit that greatly simplified production--and the Ford GPW Jeep was born.  Externally, and in it's driveline, the GPW was identical to the Willys MB, but in the end, Ford produced approximately 50% of the 500,000-plus Jeeps built from 1942-45.  This is my Hasegawa 1944 Ford GPW project, in 1/24 scale.  It's as fully-detailed as I can make it--with added clutch and brake pedal details and linkages (something which most all makers of Jeep kits seem to forget to include, at least in 1/24 scale.  First up is the raw chassis, with a scratchbuilt Ford front crossmember. Also added in this pic are the clutch and brake pedal assemblies, scratchbuilt in brass.  Added next, in addition to the pedals and master cylinder, were all the brake lines with appropriate tee "fitttings"  (fabricated from 1/16" brass tubing).

Ford GPW Chassis with brake lines installed.jpg

Edited by Art Anderson

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Next up, and more than a bit complicated and frustrating, was the clutch throwout linkage setup--all done in small brass rod, but "anatomically" correct.Ford_GPW_brake_and_clutch_pedal_assembly

Ford GPW chassis with master cylinder and pedals installed1.jpg

Edited by Art Anderson

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Oh wow - another Art Anderson build!  I always LOVE your work - one of my favourite builders!

Funnily enough, I just picked up the Italeri Willys Jeep keep which looks near identical to your pics - I wonder if theyre the same kit badged differently?

I'll be watching!

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Chassis got wheels and tires installed on the 4th,  and has it's completed clutch pedal and throwout rod assembly done.

Ford GPW Jeep chassis top view1.jpg

Ford GPW Jeep chassis sideview2.jpg

Ford GPW Jeep chassis sideview1.jpg

Ford GPW scrtchbuilt brake and clutch pedals wtih master cylinder installed 1.jpg

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But wait!   There's more!   WW-II Jeeps had headlights that were uniquely mounted--BEHIND the grill panel.  This was so the headlight brackets used, could be unbolted from the inner fender panel, and then the headlight swung up and over the front of the grille panel, and the headlights themselves swiveled so as to provide "floodlighting" for maintenance work in the field. My brackets are done in 1/64x1/8 inch brass strip, simplified, as they were just too small to allow me to recreate the "channel section" appearance of the "upright leg" on them.  Still though, I think I captured the look, and the principal of the concept.

 

Ford GPW headlight adjustment bracket2.jpg

Ford GPW headlight installation4.jpg

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Oh wow - another Art Anderson build!  I always LOVE your work - one of my favourite builders!

Funnily enough, I just picked up the Italeri Willys Jeep keep which looks near identical to your pics - I wonder if theyre the same kit badged differently?

I'll be watching!

I have both, and the two kits appear to have been independently developed--Italeri's kit dates from the early 1990's (in at least a couple of verisons, including the "Fire Jeep"), while Hasegawa's kit first appeared about 8-10 yrs ago, IIRC.

Art

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Ohh, interesting!  I don't have both here to compare them, but interesting to know!  Thanks Art!  Keep us posted on your build!

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Ohh, interesting!  I don't have both here to compare them, but interesting to know!  Thanks Art!  Keep us posted on your build!

I was prepared to take this project on with the Italeri Jeep kit, until I found the Hasegawa--the deal breaker there was that the Italeri Jeep has its tires molded as part of the wheels, while Hasegawa has black PVC tires.

Art

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Art,

Impressive work.  I have a soft spot for the Willys/Jeep with a CJ in the driveway and an Italeri fire jeep in the stash.

Gary

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Art,

Impressive work.  I have a soft spot for the Willys/Jeep with a CJ in the driveway and an Italeri fire jeep in the stash.

Gary

Uh, don't forget that this one is a FORD Jeep (Ford Motor Company produced about half of the over 500,000 Jeeps during WW-II).  The front crossmember I scratchbuilt for my project is the real "identifier" here 

Art

Ford GPW Chassis with new front Crossmember.jpg

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I always thought Bantam got screwed on the Jeep contracts or lack there of. Oh well that's another story. This Jeep is looking fantastic!

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