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Vintage Jeep Accessories & Conversions - Old Tool

Posted in Features on June 3, 2014 Comment (0)
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Before the days of recreational four-wheeling and sport/utility vehicles, Jeeps were used primarily as workhorses. We’re not talking about the work of hauling you over some hellish trail or through rush hour traffic. We’re talking about plowing a field, towing a disabled DeSoto taxi, powering a snow blower, or running a PTO-driven AC generator for days at a time. Real, punching-the-time-clock work!

In the early days of Jeeps, the array of working accessories was staggering. You name the job, and some company was probably building an accessory to do it with a Jeep. As the years went by and other more specialized equipment was developed, these items gradually left the accessory catalogs. If you look carefully, you can still find a few Jeep items in the workin’ category -- most commonly snowplows. Check out some of the goodies available to Jeep owners of the past. And if you happen to own any of these gems, we’d love to see photos of them in action.

The Sheneker Iron Works of Buffalo, New York, offered this backhoe conversion for Willys trucks. It could dig a hole eigh feet deep and appeared in the late '40s. A similar apparatus was offered for early CJs.

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Brede Products of Minneapolis, Minnesota, offered this rotary snow plow conversion for the CJ-3B that appeared in 1953. A Separate engine, another Jeep F-head four-cylinder, was mounted in back to drive the rotary blower. The unit was detachable, but added 2,000 pounds to the Jeep.

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The Marski Collection’s ’46 CJ-2A mounts the earliest known Canfield wrecker known to exist (serial # 13). This model JP-104 was a manually operated unit (later called the JP-106) with a 2-ton capacity. It couldn’t quite lift that 5,000-pound DeSoto taxi, but it could take the front wheels off the ground and drag it home (slowly). This wrecker kit cost $279 in 1953.
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Long before factory hardtops were the norm and soft tops were relatively weathertight, aftermarket hardtops were a common accessory. A large number of manufacturers offered hardtops, including Koenig, Worman, Sears, and others. This Koenig steel top represents the top-o-the-line in the early ’50s. This one cost $190.
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