What to look out for when buying an MB?

JRucker2004

New member
5
0
1
Location
Oregon
Long time lurker, first time poster here.
I've been wanting to do an MB restoration for as long as I can remember, and I think I'm ready to start taking the first steps towards taking the plunge.
I've already found a couple MB's, but I don't have much experience with them. I could really use some help before going to check them out, so I know what I'm looking for.

My biggest fear is rust. Where are the problem areas on these rigs, where should I be looking for rust?

Which parts should I be looking for? Are there any parts that are difficult to source, or hard to find, that I should try and get with the vehicle? (engine? tranny? t-case? axles?)

Any other things I need to look out for?
 
Last edited by a moderator:

quickfarms

Active member
3,497
16
38
Location
Orange Junction, CA
What to look out for when buying?

Check the hat channels that support the floor. From the factory they had a wood spacer to prevent crushing. The wood can and will absorb water and cause rusting.

Look for cracks in the frame near the spring hangers and front frame horns.

Check all the fluids including the knuckles to see if there is any water in the oil.

Check the numbers to see if the title, dash plate and frame match.

The list can go on and on. A lot of it depends on weather you are buying a vehicle for restoration, a runner or a restored one.
 

JRucker2004

New member
5
0
1
Location
Oregon
Check the hat channels that support the floor. From the factory they had a wood spacer to prevent crushing. The wood can and will absorb water and cause rusting.

Look for cracks in the frame near the spring hangers and front frame horns.

Check all the fluids including the knuckles to see if there is any water in the oil.

Check the numbers to see if the title, dash plate and frame match.

The list can go on and on. A lot of it depends on weather you are buying a vehicle for restoration, a runner or a restored one.
Thanks for the info, good to know.
I'm looking to get one to do a complete restore.
I don't have any problem doing a little fabrication and repairs, but I don't want to spend all of my time and money replacing big chunks of the tub, or the frame.
I appreciate any and all info you guys are willing to share.
 

Husker402

New member
14
0
0
Location
Omaha, NE
I think having the data plates are a plus. Also, quite often, you can still make out the registration numbers on the hood...if not, be careful removing the paint in case they are under several layers of paint. The hat channels were mentioned. Look for a period correct engine. Sometimes GPWs had MB engines installed in them during service and vice versa...which is OK. Try avoid a jeep with a lot post war civilian parts, unless the rest of the jeep is nice. The list is endless, really. Try to find the Nabholtz books "All American Wonder" vols 1 & 2. They would be a good resource to have.
 

JRucker2004

New member
5
0
1
Location
Oregon
I think having the data plates are a plus. Also, quite often, you can still make out the registration numbers on the hood...if not, be careful removing the paint in case they are under several layers of paint. The hat channels were mentioned. Look for a period correct engine. Sometimes GPWs had MB engines installed in them during service and vice versa...which is OK. Try avoid a jeep with a lot post war civilian parts, unless the rest of the jeep is nice. The list is endless, really. Try to find the Nabholtz books "All American Wonder" vols 1 & 2. They would be a good resource to have.
Where should the registration numbers be on the hood?
Are they stamped, engraved, painted?
Thanks for the heads up on those books. I found them on amazon, and will probably order them soon!
 

B3.3T

Active member
1,250
17
38
Location
SW Ohio
There is a HUGE amount of particulars with these and you really need to do your homework. It will be fun and worth it in the long run. Check out www.g503.com for real experts on these and join the MVPA.
 

32r2

New member
16
0
1
Location
Estherville Iowa
The hood registration numbers are on the side of the hood just above the fenders. They usually wrap over from the side onto the top of the hood .They read horizontally.Look at just about any WW2 jeep picture and you will see them.They were always painted on.Up until late 1944 they were painted at the factory in a blue drab paint but often in the field repainted in white . Sometimes you will find more than one layer of numbers due to repainting.
 

mikes

New member
12
0
0
Location
Plainfield/IL
I'd agree with the posts before me. Things to also consider. from my restoration. Make sure it has a title that makes life easier if you live in a title state. Try to buy the best, most complete vehicle you can find you may pay more but in the long run it comes out cheaper. Along with what has been mentioned above look to see what's missing. all the bolt on brackets, handles lights etc. All those bolt on items can get pricey. you should take that into account when determining what your willing to pay. Hope this helps some. Mike
 

JRucker2004

New member
5
0
1
Location
Oregon
Re: What to look out for when buying?

Thanks for all the info so far, guys. One of the rigs I had an eye on ended up having a cj2 tub on it, so that's out. The other one is a 4 hour drive away, and from the two pictures I've got, it looks like it's missing a ton of parts. He says he has everything for it, but his definition of everything may be different from mine.

I've got a couple other sources I need to check with, and have a program searching craigslist for me, so we'll see what else I can find. I'm not in any hurry, so I can afford to take my time to do the research and look for the perfect donor.

I appreciate all of the info so far, you've been very helpful, keep it coming!
 

ODFever

Madness Takes Its Toll...
Steel Soldiers Supporter
2,004
10
38
Location
Orlando, FL
Put the word out to your local MV club that you're looking for an MB. There might be someone on the fence about selling their MB that hasn't posted it for sale anywhere. You never know what might turn up!! :)
 

JRucker2004

New member
5
0
1
Location
Oregon
Finally activated my account over on g503.
Holy crap, that place is a time sink. I spent about 4 hours today just reading, I can see myself spending way too much time there just soaking up all of the knowledge.
 
Top
AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying!

Sure, ad-blocking software does a great job at blocking ads, but it also blocks useful features of our website like our supporting vendors. Their ads help keep Steel Soldiers going. Please consider disabling your ad blockers for the site. Thanks!

I've Disabled AdBlock
No Thanks