~ Sent to us by Ben and Bill Wilhelm. To see more photos of the restoration go to their photo album on the blog.
My son Ben wanted a Jeep as a daily driver and having owned a 1962 M38A1 in high school myself I knew my sons passion for this vehicle. I happened upon this CJ while driving a back road near my home in Thomasville, Ga. We purchased this one on 8/30/14 for $450 and towed it home. The owner had told us it was a 1967 or 68 he wasn’t quite sure. After many hours of love and care and with many parts from Kaiser Willys and many more hours of “Build your Willy’s” videos and the 62 CJ (we discovered its year in the Kaiser Willys catalogue) is back in good form and on the road again. In the process we replaced suspension parts, converted to front disc brakes, welded in new body panels & floor pans, added seats, roll bar, top and wiring harness. The drive train is all original and a previous engine swap gave us a 1971 ford pinto engine as its power plant.
Before we started neither of us had used a wire welder, arch welder, or done any paint or body work. We did have it professionally painted by John Hamilton of Collision Pro of Thomasville the paint color is Orange Crush but most prep and prime was our work. It was a totally father & son bonding project for us. His brothers helped out some as well.
Below is the only photo I have of my Jeep from 1982. It was a 1962 M38A1. My high school was the Umatilla Bulldogs, we were orange and black. That is a Mack Truck bulldog on the hood and the seats were out of a Volkswagen Beetle which I changed out to low back bucket seats from a 1968 Pontiac.
Kaiser Willys Jeep Life – Ben and Bill Wilhelm
If you would like to share your Willys Jeep Story please send us a line. We ‘d love to meet your Jeep.
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