value of restored original MB vs. restored MB with repro body

maddawg308

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Got into a conversation on another site about the value of old WWII Jeeps. Now, I know price varies all over the place, but this guy REALLY low-balled what I thought a vehicle would be worth.

I understand original WWII jeeps are worth more than a repro. What, in your opinion, would be the difference between a complete, totally restored original WWII Willys MB, versus say the same thing, with original frame, engine, running gear, gearboxes, BUT a repop body (MD Juan, Onyx, etc.) Both are complete restorations in the same condition, what would be the price differential?
 

NDT

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The repro would be $1.00 less. All repro bodies are made by MD Juan in the Phillippines regardless of who sells them. The quality has come a long way.
 

truck1

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Substantially higher. MB and GPW collectors first value unrestored vehicles or so called barn finds in original as possible condition. Then the same vehicles completely restored using original NOS parts - tubs and all sheetmetal included. Last, restored with modern replacement parts and as many original as possible, which is what my '44 GPW is. I know a restorer and NOS parts supplier who is commissioned to restore these vehicles by wealthy clients. They want ALL original parts but in perfect like new condition. The last '43 GPW of this type of restoration he completed sold to an overseas buyer for 35,000$. My GPW is worth maybe 10K. It has a MD JUAN tub and hood. All other parts are original or NOS. Hope this helps.
 

Husker402

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An MB/GPW with an original restored body tub is worth several thousands more than one with a repro tub. There is a jeep part dealer in TX who sold an MB several years ago and it was made up almost completely of repro parts. I believe it sold for $24,000. (There are several guys dong this now days and selling them to desperate buyers in Europe). I guess it depends on the buyer. For a collector, originality is everything. A jeep a repro tub is a replica, after all. I believe at that point, a large enough percentage of the overall jeep is gone, so how can it be a true WWII jeep?
 

rtk

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Interesting question , we were having this very discussion at our monthly meeting recently . I would say a "ORIGINAL" anything is always worth more , but in the MV world what exactly is "ORIGINAL" , is it original if it was overhauled by the military or restored by a currant owner ? some MV's were overhauled numerous times , and that doesn't include field MODS . I guess the old MB in a "BOX" is worth all the money !
 

Husker402

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Original meaning a certain percentage of factory and period correct parts. A restored tub is still an original tub...a restored and rebuilt original WWII engine, transmission, transfer case etc. are still "original". A jeep with a repro frame, body tub, fenders, grill, body handles, seats, windshield frame, grill, and top bows is not an original jeep...even if the running gear is original. It's a replica. It looks original, right? But it's a replica.
 

rtk

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Seems like the Jeep's are getting like Model T's and A's , you buy a bunch of REPO parts and make one ! Not the same as original at all , looks nice but differently not the same .
 

saddamsnightmare

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September 19th, 2013.

May I posit a question to those of you who are discussing "Original",Restored Original" and "Restored using repro body tub parts"? What happens after you have driven your MB, M38 or M38A enough that you have worn out engine and drivetrain parts? Do you replace the parts or leave the vehicle inoperative?

Do you replace the rusted out body and frame components with NOS, or if unavailable, repro parts? What happens to your "original" MV over the course of a century or so, one many or all the wearing parts and rusted body parts (and they will rust, unless you live in the Atacama Desert), how much of the vehicle do you feel will be "original" versus a unit that has the appearance of the original?

I beg to differ with the unjudicious comments made above about the built Model T's and A's, many of them have pretty much original parts, often salvaged from different vehicles, but as long as the engine has the original serial number, it is that car. In railroad equipment restoration, we realize that due to wear, age and safety rules, we are going to reach a point where the appearance of the original is maintained, but like the USS Constitution, less then 2% of the original fabric is there after 200+ years afloat,yet the spirit of the vessel is still there. If you use it, or expose it to weather, temperature or humidity changes, your original vehicle will sooner or later cease to exist, only stand in molecules in stand in parts will be seen......IMHOP:not worthy:
 
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Rusty1340

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Sorta like mine she was gone. The tub was in non-restorable condition no floor side panels missing 3 inches from the bottom and 2 inches from the top cowl top and firewall rusted away. I understand all parts are available but you can't weld to rust. The engine, trans, axles, frame were complete so a repo tub it was. Glad it was available or this veteran would have been lost. Not sure what its worth but I really don't care. I didn't build it to sell I built it to enjoy.
 

quickfarms

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The definition of restorable and rust free varies greatly by geographic region. What we consider as unrestorable out here on the west coast would be considered a good start on the east coast.

The value of anything is subjective until you actually sell it. I have seen prices all across the board it depends on many factors and weather you can document the history. Most of the older vehicles have minimal history at best.

My opinion is that original is worth more than a reproduction, how much is just a guess.
 

emmado22

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I agree 100% with Rusty. My 1945 MB in original condition meant I couldn't even sit in it without my butt hitting the pavement due to the rust holes/ nothingness where sheet metal used to be. So on went the MD Juan tub, with the saveable original parts, add some NOS or good take off parts all cleaned up, and the Willys lives on for more parades and WWII vets to stare at and bring back all the memories. Im find with that, and the "Jeep Police" can give me my ticket for being NON original and I will laugh at them as I drive to the next parade.
 

m38inmaine

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When the jeep police are picking over your jeep (which I have had happen before) just ask them where their jeep is?, they usually just cower away.
 

CARNAC

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Same, same as Emmado22. Mine is a repro tub. The loss of mine to history would have been highly disconcerting.
 

trooper632

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When I restored mine, It had several rust areas, the biggest was probably 3x4 inch's. Not bad being a 1944 model GPW, It had mostly all original parts it seemed since it had the "F" stamped on everything. If my body would have been terrible I would have gone with a repro tub, because I would want a good looking jeep but on the other hand I would rather have an original jeep tub for nostalgia. I used some Bondo in spots because of time and money but I think it turned out pretty good for novice work and I did it all myself, I don't drive it as much as I should because of time buy I don't think I would ever get rid of it.
 

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saddamsnightmare

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February 25th, 2015.

May I make one more point in the discussion? I work with a certain railway museum that has the only two surviving 1915/1926 Pittsburgh Railways Low Floor "Jones " cars in existence (from Pittsburgh), one has had about 50% of the frame and lower body rebuilt with new steel using original fabrication methods and specs, with a lot of new woodwork due to; 1. original railways poor body maintenance, and 2: Pittsburgh started using rock salt in the 1930's, with the cars not being built with galvanized metal, you can guess what the City car looked like by 1975.

The interurban is now getting similarly tired at 89 years of age. So, give the City car one more rebuild like the last one, and we should have less then 25% original body material left, probably 40% mechanical gear is as it was when new. This is the "Catch -22", use it and you lose it by "Consumptive Use", don't use it and store under proper conditions, you have the original vehicle but have lost both the experience and the spirit of seeing it run for the younger generations. Isn't that a horrible sword to have hanging over your head? While we are discussing that, I noticed a poor devil up above with a Buick engine in a WWII MB, poor choice of engine in any case, but there is some small hope of rebuilding with a salvaged orginal engine and use the Buick for a boat anchor......
 

redcoatgeo

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I think it would all depend on how well a replacement body was finished.
Mb`s and GPW`s are 70+ years old now so don`t believe for one minute that there is more than a handful you could say are truly original.
Some where there will be a repro part on it somewhere that`s for sure.
If it`s in use it will have repro parts as nothing lasts forever not even NOS.
You would not question a 5 year old car with a replacement body so what is so wrong with an MB or GPW with one???
I`m sure it looks better than panels welded in all over the place with dubious welds.
Another point would a Hotchkiss body be regarded as a repro ?
Bearing in mind it has many differences to an original but licensed by Willys.
Seems to me an MD Juan one is more closer to an original than a Hotchkiss one will ever be ??
 
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Tinwoodsman

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It totally depends on the owner or the buyer. When I restore my vehicles I attempt to go with the original parts if at all possible. That includes repairing anything I physically can using the original specification such as metal gauge, paints, whatever. Most important to me is to preserve the history. I have welded frames, tubs, fenders with small pieces and large pieces but in the end I know the part was restored to the original specifications and I have preserved something that others can admire and learn from.
 

Husker402

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I know a lot of g503 owners who would have scrapped this tub. It's not pretty now, but you wait! I'm taking the time to restore it...cutting out bad metal and replacing it with good sheet metal. It's taking many years to do. When my GPW's tub is finished and the jeep is complete it will still be mostly original. Far better then a repro tub in my opinion. Yes, I'm a member of the "jeep police" and proud of it. Those of us who've spend years restoring the original tubs on our jeeps have particular opinions about repro tubs. I could have simply bought a repro tub for $2000 several years ago and slapped it on the chassis but then my jeep wouldn't be mostly original anymore. In then end, my jeep would be worth at least $10K more than one with a repro tub, but its not about the money...its about preserving as much history as possible.


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bikeman

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I'd rather see a Juan tub on than the loss of the vehicle. At what point does all the patching replace the tub? and Value is in the eye of the buyer. you may find someone willing to pay more for a Juan tub simply because they know that they won't have random rust issue spots where the last owner didn't quite get everything.

Now if it was some uber rare body type (EX an "airborne modified jeep", and I mean like the one in the Airborne and Spec Ops Museum in Fayetteville, not just one without the windshield), I can see going through a restore, but for a regular MB/GPW? if it's lost too much, there becomes a point where it no longer makes sense to just patch it up.
 
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