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Willys M Jeeps Forums :: View topic - How to find USA number for hood
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How to find USA number for hood

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Joined: Aug 21, 2022
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2022 4:47 pm    Post subject: How to find USA number for hood Reply with quote

Does anyone know how or where you can find the USA hood number? Mine had a bare metal paint and no hood number. Serial # is MC68810. Any help would be appreciated
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2022 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You had posted this in our long term project following page so I had to move your technical question to our technical board page.

There is no way to accurately assess what hood number belongs on which jeep.

The military issues a production contract for a specific quantity of jeeps and spare parts. If the contract is for 2,000 jeeps then the military also issues a block of 2,000 hood registration numbers to be placed on each jeep as it rolls off the line. Now production issues are very common and the sidelining for a day or so or a week or so of 50 jeeps is not uncommon. By the time this batch of 50 jeeps gets back in the production line many consecutive body serial numbers have already by passed them. A sidelined group of 50 consecutive serial jeeps for 2 days can easily allow 200 serial numbers to pass them by before they re-enter the production line. Hood numbers were not mated to the jeeps until they rolled at the end door. So in this example say we have 200 serials bypass the 50 sidelined jeeps and those 200 are MC20001 thru MC20201 Now the 50 sidelined jeeps re-enter the production line so we have MC19950 thru MC20000 getting their 50 hood numbers after the 200 later serialed jeeps. Now 72 years later we want to know what hood number was painted on MC19978???? Well in May 1951 they were never recorded at Willys for serial vs hood registration number. If someone at Willys had been paid to stand at the end of the production line and write down each hood number and the dash plate serial it was with installed on then we'd have a proper and accurate database to answer your question but unfortunately Willys did not pay anyone to do that hood number tracking job.

When I started back in 1996 on my Yahoo M38 group to attempt to assemble a database that would help us better track changes and other events in our jeep's lives that would help us do accurate restorations I initially gave this a shot. It did not take long to realize that with 3/4 of a century of mix and match and lacking any firm factory accounting of things like hood numbers vs serials that I would never be able to attain a reliable level of accuracy in my databases. Even when a member slowly strips the paint on his hood looking for an original hood number he will eventually realize that only proof of an original hood number is means the number is original to that hood. None of us can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that any hood number is the exact original hood number that has stayed on that serial number jeep since the day it rolled out the Willys door.

With these facts in mind I have always suggested folks choose the first three digits of a hood number from those in use on the date of a jeeps production from the very inaccurate databases we have then to insure their jeep doesn't fool future database builds with a wildly contrived hood number you should use 4 or 5 of the numbers as they appear in your serial number as the last 4 or 5 numbers of your contrived hood number.

So in your case you ask what hood number came from Willys on the hood of your May 1952 produced M38 Serial # MC68810. Well if you look at our current M38 database you will probably note that less than 5% of our recorded jeeps have a suspected original hood number listed. You will also note that MC68468 has a hood number 20944021 and MC69720 has a suspected original hood number 20944419.


342 serials
between these
two jeeps------------There are 392
-----------------------hood numbers
MC68810-------------between these
------------------------two hood numbers!!!!!

910 serials
between these
two jeeps


How could anyone possibly determine accurately exactly which hood number went on MC68810????????????
Wes K
45 MB, 51 M38, 54 M37, 66 M101A1, 60 CJ5, 76 DJ5D, 47Bantam T3-C & 5? M100

Mjeeps photo album:
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Posts: 3390
Location: Texas Hill Country

PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2022 6:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is the slim chance his unit is among the ones listed in sales brochures when disposed of by the military.

There are not that many brochures, and the ones Ive seen donít always have much information. But I have seen motor serial and hood registration numbers listed in them.

As Wes points out, is there a chance a hood or motor got swapped during a vehicleís career in service? You bet. Are these brochures 100% correct? Your mileage may vary.

But they are there.
1950 M38
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Joined: Jun 27, 2021
Posts: 9
Location: Carthage, North Carolina

PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2022 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mine is MC 68648, with a hood number of 20943745, so as Wes pointed out, there is no linear relationship between chassis #ís and hood numbers, as mine is lower than the Jeep Wes mentioned.

At the end you have two choices, make up the five digits after the 209, or put a completely different number on it.

The second option unfortunately is preferred, as not to add confusion to the data base if your Jeep is sold and the number is given to Wes thinking it is original, matching your MC#.
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