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Willys Australia Serial Numbers

Original CJ-3B Factory Records, 1958


 

The records accessible here show the serial numbers, assembly dates and destinations for the approximately one thousand CJ-3Bs imported in crates and assembled at the Brisbane, Australia factory in 1958. The records were kept by an employee named John Miller, and saved by Parts Manager Barry Massey when Willys Australia closed in 1974. Thanks to Mitch Holland for scanning the sheets, and Miran Hunziker for archiving them for the Willys Australia Facebook group.
 

Records page 3 Each of the 24 pages of records includes information in the following columns:

The name of the ship on which the crates arrived is given at the top of the sheet.
 

Records page 1 The first page starts with some confusion. Apparently, Willys serial numbers stamped on the frames were initially used as stock numbers, and shortly afterwards changed to a simple numerical sequence starting with 0(1), then 1.

Later serial number revisions on the first 89 Jeeps assembled, were possibly due to Willys Australia installing bodies with serial number plates that in most cases didn't match the stamped numbers on the frames.
 

The Jeeps were not assembled in the exact order they were received, nor in the order of their Willys Motors serial numbers, but the earliest number seems to be 43587T (stock no. 121 in January) and the highest number 48357L (stock no. 1222 in December.)

Stock numbers range from 0-1223, but some numbers are missing between one page and the next. The missing numbers might relate to new numbers being required for units lengthened as model CJ-3BL. Since a total of 204 stock numbers are missing from the sequence, there are 1,020 numbered Jeeps on this list (plus 4 at the end with no stock number.)

Stock numbers crossed out and replaced by numbers in a W600 sequence, were apparently units delivered to Dominion Motors (130K JPEG) and re-numbered.

The Willys Motors serial numbers would all have been preceded by the prefix 57348. They all have letter suffixes added, which is how the plant in Toledo, Ohio indicated they were destined for export, but it's not clear what the different letters mean. (See more details in Serial Numbers on CJ3B.info.) The engine numbers would have been preceded by the prefix 4J.

The links below are to full-size scans of each record sheet (500K JPEGs).

The Ships

Most of the pages are not numbered, but are organized according to the name of the ship on which the crates arrived in Brisbane. Because those names were recorded, I thought it would be appropriate to include a photo of each of the vessels, alongside the lists of the vehicles they carried. These ships were built between 1937-1958, and scrapped between 1967-1983. Thanks to the photographers, listed at the bottom of the page.

Pioneer Star

Pioneer Star

(23 January 1958)

Note: Stock numbers 192-227 are not included.
 

American Forester

(24 March 1958)

Stock numbers 354-389 are not included.
 

City Of Auckland, photo by Chris Finney

City of Auckland

(15 April 1958)


 

Pioneer Cove, photo by Malcolm Cranfield

Pioneer Cove

(19 May 1958)

Stock numbers 708-761 are not included.
 

Pioneer Isle, photo by Frank Palmer

Pioneer Isle

(29 May 1958)

  • Stock Nos. 762-797
     

    Port Quebec, photo by Malcolm Cranfield

    Port Quebec

    (27 June 1958)

    Note: by this point, some of the arriving units were not coming off the assembly line until November.


     

    Ashburton

    Ashburton

    (7 July 1958)


     

    Devon, photo by Malcolm Cranfield

    Devon

    (28 July 1958)

    Stock numbers 990-1019 are not included.
     

    Durham, photo by Bernard Smith

    Durham

    (18 August 1958)

    Note: delivery dates move into 1959.


     

    Port Saint John, photo by Malcolm Cranfield

    Port Saint John

    (9 October 1958)

    Stock numbers 1170-1217 are not included.
     

    Unknown ship, Story Bridge, Brisbane River

    Fair...

    (1 December 1958)

    Note: full name of vessel illegible. Photo shows an unknown ship on the Brisbane River.

    Note: 6 delivered to the RAAF. List also includes two units without stock numbers, labelled "transferred from CJ5".
     

    City Of Poona, photo by Andreas Hoppe

    City Of Poona

    (Unknown date of arrival)

    Note: No stock numbers listed. Includes the 1961 Surrey Beach Car.
     

    There is probably more information to be gleaned from these sheets. Comments are welcome to my e-mail below.

    Thanks to Barry Massey for saving and commenting on the sheets. Also Mitch Holland for scanning them, and Miran Hunziker for archiving them for the Willys Australia Facebook group. -- Derek Redmond

    Photo Credits


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    Last updated 9 November 2018 by Derek Redmond redmond@cj3b.info
    http://cj3b.info/World/AustraliaSerialNos.html
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