Moderator: PapaC

DJ3A DISPATCHER Engine Number Prefix

PapaC
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PapaC
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Joined: September 11th, 2013, 6:55 am

May 26th, 2017, 7:18 pm #1

I found out pretty early on that correct DJ3 Dispatchers had a engine serial number stamped on the front of the motor above the water pump. I also knew that for that motor to be considered correct for a DJ3A it should have a prefix of 3J- and then the number. According to all information I had I had always assumed that only DJ3A's carried this prefix.

Another fact is that that the Serial number of the Jeep and the motor never match on DJ3A Dispatchers. To the point of sometimes not even being close. My common assumption was that at the time WILLYS was also pulling these motors off the line as needed to be used in generators, pumps, or other non jeep accessories. I had grown pretty comfortable in knowing this fact.

That is until about two weeks ago when I was reading a thread on the CJ2A forum. A gentleman there mentioned that he had a non 2A motor in his CJ2A. His motor had a 3J prefix and he posted it was out of a CJ3A

Instead of completely doubting his word I filed the informative in my head and decided to do some research. I went to the CJ3A forum and started looking at stastics. CJ3A's were of course made from 1949 until 1953. Records there of existing 3A's listed too many 3J prefix engine numbers to be a coincidence. In addition, they too had reported a unusual amount of discrepancies between the relationship between their engine numbers and their actual serial numbers. Just like we do on our Dispatchers!!!

I turned to Colin Peabody who knows more about the statistics of our DJ3A Dispatchers than I ever will. I wanted to verify what I had found and to find out if I was seeing things or assuming something completely wrong.

With his permission I'm going to add his initial response.


wrote:With all the 3J engine numbers in the CJ3 A line, and all the 3J numbers we know are in the DJ3A Jeeps, we have to think the ties to the DJs and CJ3As is more prevalent than we thought before. I had thought (incorrectly now) that the 3J numbers were DJ3A engine numbers only.  Do we now think that Willys had plenty of engines and body parts for the CJ3A series when that model was discontinued in 1953 and simply used the same designation and parts for the DJ3As in late 1955 and later? Sure looks that way!
THANKS COLIN!!!!!
Charles Tate....North Mississippi

1956 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible
Doing ground up nuts and bolt restoration by almost entirely reconditioning original used or a few NOS DJ3A parts.

1962 WILLYS DJ3A Convertible. (For research and parts only)
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colin
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colin
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Joined: July 21st, 2010, 7:31 pm

May 26th, 2017, 8:25 pm #2

I appreciate Charles' comments about my knowledge of numbers, but I am finding out the more I think I know about Jeeps, the less I know about Jeeps. Like him, I had thought the 3J engine numbers were designated for DJ3As. Had I done some research a few years ago before I had my DJ3A and when I did have a CJ3A, I might have been more knowledgeable about the CJ3A engine numbers. My CJ3A didn't have the engine number visible due to having the block resurfaced prior to my ownership. I would have paid more attention then.

Be that as it may, we know now that the engine numbers for CJ3As and DJ3As had the same prefix and the numbers did not match the serial numbers on either model designation. They weren't necessarily in sequence with serial numbers of Jeeps on either side of them. They could be off a couple hundred or even as much as several thousand. 1948-49 Jeepsters with the L-134 engines used a "U" prefix and those numbers did not correspond with the serial number of the car either. Same for station wagons, panel deliveries and pickups, which used a"S" or "SW" or "T" or "2T" using the L-134 Go Devil engine. I had assumed that the universal Jeeps simply used a "J".
My question has been all along, did they stamp the engine number prefix(only) once the engine was in the particular vehicle and that is why the following digits were so far off. The last digits were already stamped? There were dozens of additional applications for the L-134 and they must have all had a different prefix. The Henry J 4 cylinder vehicles only had an engine number that began with 350xxxx, but other than the Kaiser cylinder head, it was the Willys Go-Devil. Too many questions, not enough answers that remain for history.

DJ3As were a combination of parts derived from CJ3A and CJ3B models, with some modifications added, like the rear mounted gas tank, new speedometer cluster, straight front 2WD axle, centered rear pumpkin, column shifted 3 speed trans, and a few other items. the 56337 model designation laid out the relationship with the CJ3A and 3Bs. Some DJ3As had the CJ3A windshield with vent, some like the convertible model had the CJ3B windshield with no vent and some even had the windshield that actually pivoted open.

Oh well, PapaC, Charles, welcome as our new moderator.
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