Joined: May 12, 2018 Posts: 80 Location: Austin Texas
Posted: Sun Sep 22, 2019 11:07 pm Post subject: Registration questons
Well our restoration has gotten to the point that we are now considering registering and putting plates on the 1955 M38A1. We have a Texas Title that needs to be formally transferred into our name and a bill of sale for when we purchased it. The title matches the engine numbers. The serial number or patent plate was present but nothing on the plate was legible. The data plates on the dash were missing. Reproductions of both matching the motor number and title were obtained but have not been installed yet.
Now a few questions.
1. Would it be best to get the Jeep inspected prior to trying to get it registered?
2. Believe since it's antique we can waive the inspection but didn't know if that was still a good idea or not?
3. Think we can apply for military vehicle plates or use a correct year plate. We have a Texas plate from 1955 and would like to use that if possible.
4. Are pictures and or pencil tracings of the engine plate required? What about pencil tracings of the new data plate or pictures?
We have an old license plate that was on the Jeep when we purchased it. I will bring it along if it helps. Any other things we should be thinking about or missing?
I'll assume you are trying to register the jeep in Texas. The majority of our members will not be able to answer questions about Texas DMV laws and processes. I am a bit old fashion but I still title anything I buy in my name before I start investing time & money in a restoration. If your state requires a vehicle safety inspection by an official agency or garage before plates can be issued then I would simply hold off on the plates & registration until the jeep was ready for inspection.
I caution you against stamping your engine serial on a new dash data plate. Although Willys did not match engine serials to chassis serials there are still some engine serials that do match the chassis serials on other M38A1's. For example one of my spare MD engines is MD21226. Well there is also a Sep 1952 M38A1 issued to the USMC serial MD21226. So if I use that number on my new replacement dash serial plate and apply for a title in any state that state does an automatic search to see if that # is in use already on any other titles. If it does you'll have more headaches then you ever wanted to have. This is a two way street. Let's say my M38A1 is already titled in Wisconsin using the engine serial MD21226 and Joe Smith finished his resto on HisSep 1952 M38A1 MD21226 and applies for a title. The state DMV researches the title serial and find mine already has that serial. Now I and the Joe Smith are going to have to endure a lot of time wasting PITA with verification documents and one or both of us may end being required to post a bond for our jeep before the DMV will allow either one to hold a valid title. Trust me when I say I have seen this happen right here in Wisconsin.
I notice they seem to prefer the seller's signature on the some of the documents. Also there are time limits from date of sale to when you apply for new title. So be sure to read their requirements very carefully.
Now I will offer a suggestion to make your future post obviously a wee bit more freindly by adding a real first name to your signature element in your profile along with your jeep's model # IE M38A1 and then in the location block of your profile list at least your state and the city also would be handy so folks realize they are near you and you will find more nearby friends doing jeep restos. _________________ Wes K
45 MB, 51 M38, 54 M37, 66 M101A1, 60 CJ5, 76 DJ5D, 47Bantam T3-C & 5? M100
Wes is correct, I know some of the answers to your questions as they were prior to the last legislature but would not presume to answer them because of possible changes. Call TXDOT, Motor Vehicle Division in Waco. Ask for folks involved the the registration of antique vehicles, your vehicle would fall into that general catagory. They can explain how to register by the vehicle hood number or by an antique plate or with an issue plate that says antique vehicle.
One thing not to do is to talk to the folks at your local tax office. They are not experts and many times are not aware of all the things allowed, or not allowed regarding these type of registrations. The folks in Waco are up to date and will help you with the local tax office if you run into problems with their knowledge. _________________ R G Mutchler
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