Interesting! I had been told that it was not a standard USN font, and hadn't been able to prove that it was. I emailed Rick, Thanks!Actually..this IS the standard font.......The hood number and these numbers are the correct font (style) of numbers used by the factory and by the Navy when they re-numbered the vehicle.
That is some amazing information! Definitely not something that I could have found on my own.Now...let's look at your vehicle's data...............
No day is stamped on the plate, only month and year. Tom Woldbolt said that it was a Richmond GPW. I've attached photos at the bottom of this post depicting the data plates and casting numbers.
The engine casting issue is very interesting, I hadn't even considered that as a possibility. While certainly not concrete evidence, one of the G503 SN databases seems to support your theory that the original 161784 block was rejected at the factory.
161266 12- 11- 43
161503 12- 7- 43
161577 12- 3- 43
161909 12- 8- 43
Those all have day month and year, and since Richmond only stamped month and year they couldn't have been from Richmond. Also, they are all from early December. However, if you do a search under January 44, you find several Richmond GPWs in the 165xxx-173xxx range.
Thank you, that cleared up a lot for me. I still have one question concerning registration numbers. When you say "when ordance took over" and "procured under ORD contracts", is that the Army Ordnance Corps?In the beginning.........of jeep production.... all the services and foreign Governments had their own contracts with the MFG's. This created a blockage for the services to get vehicles. If Willys was making MB's for the Marines then the Army had to wait for that contract to be finished for their contract to begin . When Ordnance took over the vehicle contracts they decided all vehicles would be procured under ORD contracts and then be distributed among the various branches of service and foreign Governments.
Very true, and unless I had been able to recover the bumperette or front bumper markings, I won't be able to conclusively say whether this GPW was Army/Navy, or strictly navy. Due to the circumstantial evidence, I am leaning towards this jeep having been immediately acquired by the Navy.The presence of stars or no stars does not indicate whether the vehicle was used by the Army or not. Application of the national insignia (star) was up to the area commander. Many jeeps did not have stars applied when used by the Army.
Thank you very much for the help. I truly appreciate it.