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DJ3A DISPATCHER CONVERTIBLE; RESEARCH THREAD
Topic Started: Dec 6 2013, 05:39 PM (10,121 Views)
PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
One of these days I'm going to want a top for my jeep. Thanks to Steve I've already got doors.

I don't know how it all works. No matter how hard I've looked I can not find a clear picture of the top bows and how they fasten or which brackets to use and how. I've got pictures of them with the top up. I also got a few pictures of one with the bows showing but they are to fuzzy to make out details. I 'think' I can grid off one of the pictures and come up with pretty close measurements. I 'think' I can make a pattern for and sew the top itself. (Worked in a furniture factory for ten years) I know about the twist fasteners that fasten it to the windshield.

I don't know how the bows fasten and work and hinge and fold down. I don't know how the top itself fastens to the tub if I ever get that far.

Any help or pictures would be appreciated. You can even email them to me and I'll post them here if that will help.


Thanks in advance!!!
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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F Bill
Jeep discovery and aquisition specialist
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
I've notice the lack of documentation on the convertible model top as well. Did you have any fasteners on the side or back panel on your DJ?

I think there were some sort of fasteners that the bottom edge of the top would hook under and the top would be pulled upwards by the bows. The windshield was more of a sliding in a groove deal, not the common sense fasteners.EDIT: Surrey is Sliding channel groove, Convertible used CS fasteners!

Can you post a pic of those doors? Are they convertible doors or off something like a Bestop?

Lets hope some of our experts with literature collections chime in.
59 convertible 15933 needs drivetrain
60 convertible 17052 has a V6 and 4WD
60 Surrey 17509 went thru Katrina and looks it.
60 Surrey 17918 started it all...Toyota axle, BW
Wrecked Surrey Tub with fenders and grille
56 tub, from 11826
And a couple parts DJ's with no ID left.
All my jeeps are projects....only runner is my
DJ with doors..
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PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
My windshield frame has a line of holes that I believe are spaced right for the common sense fasteners.

Somewhere I have a picture of a convertible with the top up that seems to verify this. It's a greenish color and was once on ebay. It seems to have a top like the one in the pictures and it does i believe have those fasteners. It looks real nice.

I've also got some pictures of a dj that I believe I got from the e-willys site. They're showed an older, unrestored dj with top bows attached and folded down but I can't exactly make them out or identify the brackets.

I don't know what my doors are, since they're canvas covered but I figured at some point I might could make them work. I Know they'll have to be cut down some because of my shorter windshield but I've got the hardware with them too. Later I'll get a picture of them.

On one side of my windshield frame the channel for the door has been removed or fell off. In a pinch I can get a whole piece of that top channel which is available and cut off what I need to repair this.

No fasteners on mine anywhere. CThey had all been removed. Only some holes for for footman loops and on each side a pair of holes I believe to be for a bracket to hold them when they're folded down, but not sure. No brackets I've seen for sale seem like they would match these holes.
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
At the time I saved these this was on ebay. Maybe the E-Willys site too.


Posted Image

The the holes in my windshield frame appear to be like these.

Posted Image
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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F Bill
Jeep discovery and aquisition specialist
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
That appears to be a snap fastened aftermarket top. I will see if I have any pics of my jeep that has the original fasteners on it here with me.(EDIT: nope!)
Here is what I consider to be the correct Convertible top..
http://www.film.queensu.ca/CJ3B/Photos/Dis...toryRear300.jpg

Note how low on the tub the sides of the top sit, and where the bottom of the top is on the windshield. I wish I had a better pic, might be able to enlarge that some to see if there are snaps anywhere besides the ones I see in the door opening, maybe. I think there is a wire or a rod inserted in the lower sides of the top that hooks underneath the fasteners I refer to on the lower side panels.
59 convertible 15933 needs drivetrain
60 convertible 17052 has a V6 and 4WD
60 Surrey 17509 went thru Katrina and looks it.
60 Surrey 17918 started it all...Toyota axle, BW
Wrecked Surrey Tub with fenders and grille
56 tub, from 11826
And a couple parts DJ's with no ID left.
All my jeeps are projects....only runner is my
DJ with doors..
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PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
here's another picture from a pamphlet I had found apparantly with some of my same hole spacing.

Posted Image
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
A complete picture of the ebay one



______________________________________________


EDIT: PREVIOUSLY COPIED FROM THE E WILLIS SITE
http://www.ewillys.com/2010/02/03/1963-dj-...edford-ma-ebay/

http://www.ewillys.com/category/dj3a/page/10/
________________________________________________

Posted Image



Ps. Here's an example from the E Willis site of an extra reinforcement on a back panel on a non tailgate dj. I want to talk about that on another thread sometime when I get ready to fabricate mine.

http://www.ewillys.com/2008/07/17/james-my...e-recognize-it/

http://www.ewillys.com/category/dj3a/page/12/
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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F Bill
Jeep discovery and aquisition specialist
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
I think you might have something there on the windshield fasteners...That factory shot sure looks like snap holes. The fasteners I am referring to on the sides and back panel are visible in that last picture.

I have a message in to an expert in Willys parts who may have access to the proper documentation. He will hopefully have some idea on what the stock Convertible top looks like as well as the bows.

Next trip to the house I will check out my two convertibles and see if they give any clues. I can retake the missing pics as well.
59 convertible 15933 needs drivetrain
60 convertible 17052 has a V6 and 4WD
60 Surrey 17509 went thru Katrina and looks it.
60 Surrey 17918 started it all...Toyota axle, BW
Wrecked Surrey Tub with fenders and grille
56 tub, from 11826
And a couple parts DJ's with no ID left.
All my jeeps are projects....only runner is my
DJ with doors..
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
Awsome!!!

I thought my windshield holes were too round for the common sense fasteners.....which if I'm correct would have attached with a sheetmetal type screw end from this era. That instead of a machined thread and a nut like the replacements I've seen which would probably would require a perfectly round drilled hole.


Just my thoughts. Add the fact that I was wondering how a person could loosen and fold the top back if it attached at the front across a channel.....instead of some other type of fastener which could be individually taken loose. Snaps would explain it.

Also I've been calling this a convertible top but I think in some circles it might also be called a ragtop.


At this time this is the entire extent of any pertinent pictures I've managed to find, and my knowledge.

When you take the pictures if you don't mind please email me a copy!
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
I have a new theory

http://www.film.queensu.ca/cj3b/Photos/Dis...W3016Yellow.jpg

I propose that a convertible dj outfitted like the one in the lower left picture with a full or half canvas top would have been available with the piece of 'channel' across the top of the windshield frame



I also make a proposal for the fact that a convertible outfitted like the picture in the lower right with the 'soft top' convertible would HAVE to have fasteners in order to seperate it from the windshield frame and fold it back along with the bows like I think it was designed to do.
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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SteveK
Member
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
quote:"I also make a proposal for the fact that a convertible outfitted like the picture in the lower right with the 'soft top' convertible would HAVE to have snaps or fasteners in order to separate it from the windshield frame and fold it back along with the bows like I think it was designed to do."

Not necessarily, if the TENSION is released from the top via the straps and sliding frame poles first (tightened last when setting it up), then the top will have slack to come forward and out of the channel...just like my Bahama Top does...and then it can be folded in place...and I'm TOTALLY guessing here...strap it down folded.

Well, now that's worth HALF of what you paid for it... lol... but hpefully 'thought provoking'. Isn't somebody out there actually driving one that can give us their take on the subject?
SteveK
62 Dispatcher
South Florida
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F Bill
Jeep discovery and aquisition specialist
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
But... aren't they the same jeep? (underneath the top, that is?)

Willys has long had a history of tops on the flatfenders that did not fold down and back up like your classical convertible of the 60's...instead they wanted the owner to collapse the bows, remove the top, and fold it for storage. The Dj3A still had the top bow sockets on the top of the wheelwell, which were designed for a vertical bow to slip in from the top. EDIT: Surrey had the bow socket, convertibles did NOT!

It appears there was an additional bow hinged from this one, that folded rearward to tension the top over the rear seat area. I would assume it would have had the same profile as the first bow. Whether this made it possible to have a taut top with it hooked under the rear hooks on the quarter and back panel, and still use a channel on the windshield, I do not know. EDIT: Look closely at the green one and you will see this bow and what appears to be an overcenter locking mechanism to hold it in position visible over the steering wheel.

These bows are the key to the top design and how it would have been installed. I have a Surrey owners manual supplement page that tells how to install the Surrey top. What we need is the same documentation of the Convertible top. We need to be looking in parts manuals and owners manuals for what little mention of the top there may be in them.

It may be a while before our expert chimes in with what he may find. In the meantime, does anyone reading this have a DJ3A parts book you can look up top assemblies in? Does the owners manual give any top installation procedures?

I have yet to see pictures or hear of anyone with a DJ3A convertible with the top. They might actually be rarer than the Surrey model. ??
59 convertible 15933 needs drivetrain
60 convertible 17052 has a V6 and 4WD
60 Surrey 17509 went thru Katrina and looks it.
60 Surrey 17918 started it all...Toyota axle, BW
Wrecked Surrey Tub with fenders and grille
56 tub, from 11826
And a couple parts DJ's with no ID left.
All my jeeps are projects....only runner is my
DJ with doors..
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
On this page, second picture, enlarge it and note the original? holes that have been filled in.


http://cj3apage.proboards.com/index.cgi?bo...play&thread=385


This US navy model with the taller windshield seems to have the channel, along with the extra top bow bracket in the back corners, that the lower windshield, non tailgate model doesn't have.

http://www.film.queensu.ca/cj3b/Photos/Dis...er/NavyDJ3A.JPG
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
F Bill
Jeep discovery and aquisition specialist
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
PapaC,Dec 9 2013
02:57 PM
On this page, second picture, enlarge it and note the original? holes that have been filled in.


http://cj3apage.proboards.com/index.cgi?bo...play&thread=385


This US navy model with the taller windshield seems to have the channel, along with the extra top bow bracket in the back corners, that the lower windshield, non tailgate model doesn't have.

http://www.film.queensu.ca/cj3b/Photos/Dis...er/NavyDJ3A.JPG

I am thinking you have hit on something here. The convertible model was sold as a sporty vehicle, featuring tennis players and beach scenes in the ads...It used the low windshield which was a 3B windshield. Not a lot of room between the glass and the frame's top for a channel, so snaps may have been the method Willys chose to attach the tops.

The tailgate version with a full top would most likely have had the higher 3A style windshield, which had the channel for top attachment. I never noticed the lack of a channel on the low windshield, mainly because I was more concerned with getting a proper Surrey windshield than one for my convertible, which actually came with the low frame.

I wonder if it is possible to install a rear seat in the convertible, and actually use it with the slant back top? With the size of the blacked out sides, visibility was pretty sad.

Interesting conversation...BTW the eWillys article with James H's Dj3A? jeep is full of inaccuracies. It is a good example of just how far we have gotten in researching Willy's lost 2WD flatfender. DO NOT try to duplicate that particular back panel I have two originals I can get you pics of. The correct bracing is different than his. His appears to me to be an aftermarket tub with some interesting modifications.
59 convertible 15933 needs drivetrain
60 convertible 17052 has a V6 and 4WD
60 Surrey 17509 went thru Katrina and looks it.
60 Surrey 17918 started it all...Toyota axle, BW
Wrecked Surrey Tub with fenders and grille
56 tub, from 11826
And a couple parts DJ's with no ID left.
All my jeeps are projects....only runner is my
DJ with doors..
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
PapaC
Papac
[ *   *   *   *   *  ]
I don't believe a back seat would have been possible because of lack of headroom. Somewhere I remember seeing one of these with a 'home made or etc...' replacement top of the sporty style that we're trying to figure out. I can't find the picture, or the source now to see if there's more clues.

I do remember that the fit was commented on as being a little bit loose. Also I remember that they had 'added' side windows, perhaps to help with the blind spot. It was obviously not original but I remember thinking the extra side windows was a cool idea.

I also 'seem' to remember a comment 'somewhere ' (can't find that either) that if the whole thing was folded back it would be better to remove the back window and store it separately. By now I can't remember if that pertained to a dj or not but it's in my mind that way.

Ps. Why would a couple of tennis players or beach goers need a back seat anyway???
If somebody else wanted to ride, just throw em in the back and let em hunker down errr. maybe just hold on for dear life until we get there!!!
:D
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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