Hooniverse Fabulous Friday Edition: An Afternoon Stroll With thejeepjunkie

This blog is about old cars, junkyards, brothers and other cool stuff like that. If that doesn’t interest you, you might want to skip this one. Just want to warn you in advance it is kind of “pseudo-folksy.”

First though, a little background.
A couple days ago Blake Z. Rong and I were chatting it up about an image of my Mom posing on the fender of an old woody wagon back when she was a young woman that I had posted on Facebook for Mother’s Day. He mentioned I should do a write up for my fellow Hoons about some of my life experiences.
I responded, “With reference to a post on this…early in my Hooniverse blogging career, I used to tag my stuff with something like “Ramblings from the olelongrooffan” or something like that.  Mitch sent me a very nice email asking me not to do that tag.  It seems someone used to tag his stuff something similar and google picked Hooniverse up as a personal blog rather than a commercial blog. I just want to keep the powers that be at Hooniverse happy with my stuff as I really enjoy the pleasure I get with my stuff on the Hoon and don’t want to jeopardize my membership there.

But know this, if that type of blogpost is acceptable to the powers that be, I got a lifetime’s worth of vehicle related stories that will totally rock! How about a Jeep stuck in a creek and it took four real live horses to get out when our tractor wouldn’t. How about that same jeep stuck in the lateral line of the septic tank on our farm? My brother and I hauling my Dad’s once again broke down Citroen DS21 on a flatbed across southern Missouri in the middle of the night, losing a trailer tire, watching it pass us by and head down a ravine, getting pulled over by the local yokels as they thought we had stolen it. Our question? Who the hell would steal this POS Citroen? Dad’s 73 LeSabre crossing a flooded creek after my brother’s wedding reception with my grandparents aboard and that tractor was commissioned to pull us out! And those are without even thinking about it!

Blake responded with: Hey John, I don’t see why not. You’re a natural storyteller and you’ve got a unique style, and since Hooniverse isn’t that “commercial” of a blog anyway I think you should give it a shot, maybe post a story or two to gauge audience interest.
So I figured I’d give it a shot. As my daily driver laptop is still in the Ormond Garage rendering me unable to access my image library, this olelongrooffan thought I would edit a post from my personal blog. The formatting on the images is a little funky but it’s about a day I spent with my brother, thejeepjunkie and his son, theKid. BTW, the Kid’s mom is thesungoddess.
And Away We Go.
Last Saturday, while the Kid and I were doing this, thejeepjunkie was doing this. While fun, today I had just as much fun, especially considering today’s activities.
Anyway, thejeepjunkie was bummed, as I related here, that all four of the wheels he got for his CJ2A down that way did not match. He mentioned he would like to head back that way and get that elusive 4th wheel. I told I wouldn’t mind going to the DeLand U-Pull-It with him. thejeepjunkie mentioned we could go on Saturday, leaving around 7:30 am. I was psyched! A day with thejeepjunkie in a junkyard. What could be better? Plus we got a mystery to boot!
Last evening, Friday, I was chatting with him while he was on his way home and we got to talking about today’s adventure. thejeepjunkie…”Yeah, I was talking to the sungoddess and…hey wait, I am home, I’ll call you later” and hung up, as we always do, without even a goodbye.
I did not hear back from him last evening. So, as often happens with the sungoddess, I presumed plans were off and I was planning on spending a sunny day on the beach.
Just as a precaution though, I arose around 7 am, and mind you these days, I am not a 7 am kind of guy. I surfed around these tubes, consumed some coffee and Tony The Tiger’s claim to fame and got some stuff I sold on ebay in the big brown truck, as well as some traveling museum pieces to the Bus.
As I was getting out of that big brown truck, I get a call from thejeepjunkie. I push the green button on my cell phone and say, “Hey lil bro, whatcha doing?”
On cue, “Waiting for what?”
“Waiting for you to get your lazy ass out of bed to go get that wheel.”
“Dude, I have been up since 7 waiting for your call.”
“D*mn, I wish you would have called me, I lounged around in bed all morning and now I am exhausted. Get over here.”
Well, my fellow Hoons know I did just that.
I gathered up some tools, climbed in the olestationbus

and headed over to the Kid’s house. In his neighborhood, I saw him mowing a single mom’s yard, just down the street. I inwardly smiled at the parenting skills of thejeepjunkie and the sungoddess, getting their 16 year old son to mow a needing neighbor’s lawn. Good Job. And to the Kid also.
So, on the way to the Kid’s house, I was unsure if thejeepjunkie would want to take the olestationbus or his late model Honda over to that old car yard. I pulled in the driveway and thejeepjunkie came walking out with a plastic 5 gallon bucket full of tools and opened the side cargo door and set them inside. Sweet!! A ride in an old car to get old car parts. How Appropriate.
And we are off. Once we are off, thejeepjunkie turns and mentions to me this is the first “road trip” he has been on in the olestationbus. I related that I was honored he wanted to take it. His response? “Why Not?”
Oh Yeah!!!
Now remember the olestationbus had just celebrated its 46th anniversary this year, and with its 170 ci 6 cylinder 110 hp and its three on the tree, high performance is not in its vocabulary. We are cruising down US 92, that concrete highway with expansion joints you can feel and hear every 10 feet, at the olestationbus’s top speed of 50 mph and that engine is roaring! Just then thejeepjunkie turns to me and says, “Shift into 4th, will ya?” We both cracked up laughing.
On that cruise down that assbeating highway, he turns to me and mentions, “All these people passing us sure are in a hurry. This is nice and relaxing.” I responded, “You know you are a slow moving vehicle when a City Bus passes you. Plus, I don’t have to be concerned about a ‘Reduce Speed Ahead’ sign.” That got a chuckle out of both of us.
Now a note about junkyards in Florida. This is a relatively newly populated state and as such, there is not a lot of history here. Well, there is some, a blog or two later I will ramble on about that, but automotive history is not huge here. I have lived, consecutively in this state for 21 years, and in total about 25 years. During that time, prior to moving to Sl-Ocala in 2003, I had never visited a Florida junkyard. While in Sl-Ocala, I did visit a few and they, without exception, were filled with 80’s and 90’s cars and trucks.
I am sorry. A real junkyard needs to be filled with old cars, not cars I remember on the road.
I mean old cars and trucks, like these I saw on one of my On The Road trips that summer.

And that old cut off top station bus I saw in Adel, Georgia? I spotted it long before acquiring my olestationbus. But, It Will Be Mine, Someday.
So, after a brief detour to see a CJ3A in a field a FHP trooper told thejeepjunkie about, we arrive at Deland U-Pull-It.
Of course, I immediately start getting images while thejeepjunkie heads off to get commandeer that wheel.

The above image is an old Mercedes 230S, the emblem on the trunk now is enjoying a place of luxury on a wall in my climate controlled Taj Mahal.

This is a cool old Plymouth, I think, Savoy. A two door longroof which has definitely seen better days. I think the neighbor at my grandparent’s cabin on the Big River outside St. Louis had one of these back in the day. Love that Classic Clamshell!!

An old Oldsmobile and a 68 Impala. That Impala had the same rust problems in the rear quarters as did the 68 Belair I inherited from my grandpa, Alphonse Carl Bansbach.

A thoroughly picked over unnamed old Rambler along with an early 60’s Lincoln.

Another old Plymouth and a F-1 with late model wheels.

Another old Chrysler product. I have always loved the funky headlamp layout on these. What were the designers thinking?

Check out this old CJ. thejeepjunkie had mentioned several times this week that he lusted after the original steering wheel of this and had brought along had brought along a battery operated sawzall to cut off the steering column to get it for his old CJ2A. And did.

Sorry about this terrible shot of a 64 Ford sedan.

And this one. I am pretty sure it is a Austin or MG or Morris but

I am unsure of the model. No badging remains.

Just a bunch of cool old cars. I will be going back soon to pick up some more stuff to ebay. And I did. Picked a bunch of parts off a Willys longroof and netted around $500 plus my labor.

On the way home, thejeepjunkie got an image of this camo motorhome.

As well as this villainous face.

So we got back to the Kid’s house and thejeepjunkie starts pulling the steering wheel off his CJ2A with that steering wheel puller. What a pain those things are, no wonder he brought the sawzall to the junkyard. After several failed attempts, I told him to grab the small sledgehammer and get that wheel off. Sledgehammer FTW!!

the Kid was checking out that new wheel, as well as that new steering wheel and some other stuff we scored today.

So, thejeepjunkie gets that late model steering wheel off his CJ2A and sets this new old steering wheel on. As you can see the disappointment on thejeepjunkie’s face, much to his dismay, It Doesn’t Fit. thejeepjunkie is totally bummed. Two old CJ2As and the steering columns aren’t the same. As he related, in a total Gentleman Farmer kind of way, “Whodathunkit?”
This is the mystery I was referring to. Why would CJ2A’s of similar vintage have different steering wheel columns? Was one supplier to over burdened that multiple suppliers were necessary? What would this mean to our troops in the middle of France in 1944? What would this mean to a farmer in his field in his Jeep in 1955? What would this mean to thejeepjunkie in his driveway in 2009?
On the positive side, he said, “Well, at least I got the matching wheel.” I piped in, “I got some cool, original hubcaps for the olestationbus and a bunch of Willys parts to ebay.”
It cheered him up somewhat.

And he commenced to reinstalling that newer, undesirable steering wheel back on that old 2A.

And even though that Willys has no front seat, it does have a steering wheel.
Now for the best part.
If you know much about Jeeps, and if you don’t here is a brief bit of history. During WWII, Willys, Bantam and Ford all built protoypes of the eventual Jeep to get the military contract for the replacement to my niece Sarah’s favorite animal in combat. Bantam was considered as a volume production risk, unable to keep up with the military demand. Willys had the best product and was awarded the contract. However, Ford was also awarded a contract for a limited number of Jeeps, should Willys slip up and not meet their end of the bargain. Well, Willys met their end of the bargain and the Ford Jeep eventually slipped to the wayside.
thejeepjunkie and I were stumped about this steering wheel situation until I started posting this blog. I went back and reviewed his blog about his last Saturday afternoon’s walk. If you remember this blogpost, you will be able to solve the mystery of why this CJ2A steering wheel is not interchangeable.
While thejeepjunkie has a 46 Willys CJ2A, that steering wheel is off a GPW Ford MJ2A. Same product, two different manufacturers.
That steering wheel came home with the longrooffan, I am looking at it right now and it goes on ebay tomorrow. At a bunch more bucks than we paid for it!!  I eventually sold it for $85 to a dude in France! I also went back and bought that whole GPW shell, put it in the back lot at thejeepjunkie’s shop and stripped it bare. I made over $1,500 ebaying the parts!
And it was a total blast out and about in a junkyard with a good friend. Hope my fellow Hoons enjoyed the ride along.
*all the images in this post are olelongrooffan originals.

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  1. $kaycog Avatar

    I've been to quite a few junk yards, and I think it's a lot of fun and very interesting, except for my fear of snakes. The yards in Colorado do have nice, rust free cars, as you probably know. There is a secret junk yard in the mountains, which is probably more of an old car hoarder's place, as nothing is for sale……weird guy. This pic is a yard in Ellicott, CO, which is East of Colorado Springs.
    Nice article. Could that picture of a '64 Ford sedan possibly be a '61 Ford?
    <img src="http://www.stevegarufi.com/cars1.jpg"width="500"/&gt;

    1. longrooffan Avatar

      I have found that snakes are more scared of you than you are of them. And, as always, this olelongrooffan never minds being corrected on my identification of any cars I see. If it's a 61, then it is. I was basing this observation on Andy Taylor's Mayberry cop car I saw on the boob tube as a kid.

    2. topdeadcentre Avatar

      Up here in the northeast, rust has its evil way with most of the older cars, plus many junkyards are now closed to browsing for parts.
      When going junkyarding, the snakes in New England aren't what to worry about. Various kinds of wasps and hornets most certainly are. Don't forget to bring the countermeasures!

      1. $kaycog Avatar

        Yeah, wasps and hornets would be scary too. Once in a Nebraska junk yard, my ex got infested with chiggers, which we don't have in CO. He was extremely miserable.

  2. citroen67 Avatar

    Awesome article! And it would have been a really awesome cross-post to my blog, but alas, due to overtime at work, and the never ending commitment to my college classes, I have yet to launch said blog past the introductory post. This is a very inspiring story that you have written, and I am determined to get my blog off and running (just as soon as I change a few things in order to have InteseDebate as my commenting plug-in). You, sir have a true story telling talent, and I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts.

  3. B72 Avatar

    That was great! Looking forward to the stories you teased us with in paragraph 4!

  4. dukeisduke Avatar

    The terrible shot is of a '61 Ford. And that "steering wheel puller" actually looks like a gear puller. All the steering wheel pullers I've ever had (I used to have a cheap one, now I have a Lisle) have a bar with a threaded hole in the middle, a large screw that you turn with a wrench, and an assortment of pairs of standard and metric bolts that screw into two threaded holes in the steering wheel hub.

    1. longrooffan Avatar

      It is a gear puller. That old steering wheel didn't have the holes in it as the more modern wheels do. Nice Catch!

  5. dukeisduke Avatar

    The Austin I believe is an Austin America. It could also be an MG 1100 or Austin 1100. It's hard to tell without the grille.

  6. Stephen Avatar

    I think that is an Austin America. My mom had one, long ago. Can't be more than a dozen or so still running in the US today.

  7. Jim-Bob Avatar

    The Rambler appears to be a 1966 Ambassador while I concur with dukeisduke that the little blue British car seems to be an Austin America. While it could be one of the other models he mentioned, it was usually sold in the US as the America.

  8. aastrovan Avatar

    Great post,I delivered furniture for a few years in a white ford van similar to yours.
    Imagine how that thing flew with a maple bedroom set on board!

  9. CptSevere Avatar

    We've got some pretty good junkyards real close to where I live, and this being Arizona, they're loaded with some pretty interesting and old vehicles. Unfortunately, the owners have no sense of humor when it comes to just browsing around. I can't promise any good pictures.

  10. P161911 Avatar

    I really need to go by English-Swedish Car spares and take some pictures. Back in high school 20+ years ago I helped them get several cars. I went out there on time in college and remember that they had a Lotus Elite (the 1950s/60s one) shell. At the time there were a long ways out of the way. Now they are less than 5 minutes from where I work.

  11. Mr_Biggles Avatar

    Great tale. Love the Longrooffan storytelling style.
    I used to love frequenting the browseable junkyards when I lived out west and was still driving the 510. Once I had what I wanted I could roam for a while poking into stuff and wishing I had a barn to keep it all in. Calgary Pick Your Part used to have a $29.95 all you can carry day every year. You could always guarantee some good entertainment watching how much stuff people could haul over the line.
    I ask around every now and again, but haven't found a real pick-your-own yard here in central Ontario yet. If anyone knows of one, let me know.

  12. Buickboy92 Avatar

    Awesome article! I really love these story's! More of them please! 🙂