A Frame Off Restoration

Clean and Repair Hat Channel

Repair Hat Channel
The tub we picked up to replace the rear section of our damaged tub did not have the rear panel hat channel with the footman, so we removed the one from our damaged tub and straightened it out.

Wheel Well Repair

Wheel Well Repair
We had to remove the passenger side rear wheel well to replace it with the better one from the discarded rear section of the original tub.

Driver Floor Pan & Gas Tank Well

Photo of before and after Gas Tank Well
We had some very productive days. We were able to take out the rusted driver side floor pan, some corroded hat channel, the gas tank well and replaced it all with new metal. The next step was to grind smooth the welds.

Drilling Out Spot Welds

Removing Spot Welds
We began the body work with the really rough stuff. Removing corroded hat channel and the gas tank well with the driver’s side floor pan. It was necessary to drill out or grind out the spot welds.

Plenty of Body Work

Replace Hat Channel
The acid dip really helped reveal the areas that needed repair. We had a number of segments of hat channel to be replaced and weak areas to patch.

Stripped Tub

Stripped Tub
We picked up the tub, fender-D, hood, and grill from MetalWorks in Eugene Oregon after the chemical striping and rust preventative treatment. It looked great! Doing the body work was so much easier. It was easy to see every blemish. We were pleased to see how much of the body was in ready condition and also surprised to see minimal surface rust after the tub sat in the garage for over two years with no primer!

Preping More Parts

Oil Canster
Oil Filter Canister: We spent much of our time prepping parts to go back on the jeep. The goal was to use as many parts from the original jeep as possible. We took them down to bare metal and primed and painted them with rattle cans.

Off to the Bath

Photo of tub to chemical Metal Works
We took the tub, grill, fender-D and hood to MetalWorks in Eugene Oregon (600 mile round trip!) to have the paint and rust removed in an acid dip and treated with a rust inhibitor. We went back a week later to pick it up.

Removed Rear Hat Channels

Photo of rear Hat Channel repair
The replacement rear section of the tub only had traces of the rear hat channel so we cleaned it up and removed the correct hat channel with the footman from the original tub. We straighten it and welded on the newly added section.

Joined the Halves

Photo of joined tubs
We completed joining the two halves. Then came the artistry. The challenge was to make the seams disappear! We were very happy to see how it turned out given this was our first time doing a project like this.
1953 M38A1 Navy Jeep

Phase II Restore

With the easy part behind us it' was time to start restoring or replacing parts. This took the longest time because each piece had to be cleaned, inspected, refurbished or replaced. It was fun to learn about each component and gratifying to see each part repaired and ready to install.

Click the Phase II link below and scroll to the bottom to see the progression.