Here are several pictures of our 1962 Ford M151-LC prototype (Desert Racer). The M151 did not have Rops (Roll bars) our does! The M151 had flat fenders our were torn so we welded in a set of Demil M151A2 drop fenders. The front bumper is a design copied from a plastic Jeep Wrangler bumper shroud. Ours is solid steel and enclosed.
We welded in 1/4 inch stell flooring/skid plates to reinforce the uni-body and to allow for the leaf springs mounts. The engine is a 4.0 from a 1992 Jeep Cherokee and the Mutt now sports a 5 speed transmission. The axles are aset of Dana 35 and Dana 30. Stock guts and gears removed and rebuilt with Racing quality parts. We are a little behind on the build do to the cold windy weather we have had the past two months. Hope you enjoy the pictures of the worlds only M151-LC...LOL
A BRIEF HISTORY - M151-LC Mutt
The M151 was designed by Ford Motor Co with guidance from the US Army's Ordnance Truck Automotive Command (OTAC) and development work began in 1951. Various types of experimental and pilot vehicles were developed and evaluated, including separate chassis/body combinations, aluminium vehicles, solid-axle versions etc. but the final version accepted by OTAC was an integral chassis/body (monocoque) unit, with all-round independent suspension, 24-volt waterproofed electrical system, two/four-wheel drive, with a four-speed, single transfer transmission. First gear and reverse were sufficiently low-geared to equate to the low-transfer equivalents found on the MB/GPW, M38 and M38A1 predecessors. The first contract was awarded to Ford and vehicles were issued to the Military in 1960 (Model M151).
In 1963/64, a revised version of the truck was designed, and was designated the M151A1. It featured a heavier-duty rear suspension, designed to cope with add-on weapons and extra loads, which had caused problems for the suspension of the basic M151. Delivery commenced in 1964 and continued up to 1969, with vehicles being built by both Ford and Willys (later Kaiser). The M151A1 was also adapted to carry the recoilless rifle (designated M151A1C) and an extended-bodied version was used as a front-line ambulance (designated M718).
The independent rear suspension configuration of the M151 and -A1 models gave rise to an oversteer condition and this, together with a lack of body "tilt" on cornering, led to many accidents, where the vehicle abruptly went out of control and/or rolled over when sudden steering movements were made. Despite training courses, films, circulars and pamphlets, the vehicle gained a reputation as being unstable, and efforts were made to "design out" the handling problems. At one stage, a MUTT was modified by having a rigid rear axle fitted (as per the wartime MB/GPW) but the experiment proved unsuccessful.
A redesign of the rear suspension was ordered and eventually the independent "A"-frame suspension was changed to a semi-trailing arm setup. This gave the handling characteristics of a solid-axle vehicle, while maintaining the flexibility of independent wheel suspension and retaining maximum parts interchangeability. This revised truck was designated the M151A2. This new suspension featured on all post-1969 versions of the vehicle, with the recoilless rifle version being designated M825 and the ambulance version designated M718A1.
Several new safety features were introduced, such as a deep-dish steering wheel, a one-piece windscreen with electric wipers and windscreen washers, plus bigger rear lights. Although handling characteristics were much improved, there were still rollover accidents. Even the fitting of Rollover Protection Kits (ROPS) to many trucks could not stave off the inevitable. The vehicle ceased production in 1982, when the advent of the "HUMMER"-series ended the MUTT era. Surprisingly, the M151A2 was still in US military service as late as 1997, when the US Marine Corps were seen to be using one during the unrest in Albania.
Suffice it to say that the M151-series has achieved a longer run of service than that of the MB/GPW, M38 and M38A1 series combined.
Because of the handling characteristics of the vehicle, the US Military decided in the late 1960's not to release any further vehicles to the public (although a few had, by this time, been disposed of at surplus sales) and all subsequent releases were designated for demilitarisation (by cutting, crushing or shredding) to preclude restoration as a usable vehicle. Despite the US Military's stance, other countries who had bought the M151-series disposed of their surplus vehicles without demilitarisation clauses. Most owners I have spoken to are well aware of the peculiarities of their vehicles' handling.
A trailer was designed for use with the M151-series, and was designated the M416. Essentially it was similar to the wartime MB-T / Bantam, and the Korean-War era M100 trailers, the notable differences being the shape of the mudguards (angular) and the wheels (same as the M151-series). In the early 1970's, an updated trailer, featuring hydraulic overrun brakes, was introduced and was designated the M416A1. These trailers, like the M151-series trucks, have been almost completely phased out of the US Military inventory.
M151-series trucks occasionally appear for sale in the U.K. and Europe but potential buyers should familiarise themselves with the chequered history of the M151-series before taking the plunge!
Team G503 Ford Racing - Bleddyn and Nate Cynfyn
A Little long but read our new vehicle plans!
your_comments: Over the years I have had my share of breaking and drilling the spot welds on M151's both in the motorpool and here at home.
Enough already, The M151 is the best design in so many ways but the spot welds of the uni-body to me were always a step backwards.
Replacing any particular damaged or rusted body panel is shear difficult work and not one of us can say we have ever enjoyed doing it!
Yes at the time light weight 1/4 tn vehicle was the direction the vehicle was to go slightly smaller and much lighter then the M38 and M38A1.
But as you can see today the HMMWV is anything but light, and sure does not have a uni-frame.
It's as heavy as they come and big...huge correct???
My mind was spawned by this huge change of vehicle design back in the mid 1980's when we first heard about this new vehicle to replace the MUTT.
Let's face reality the mutt is a nightmare to do any kind of replacement body part work too.
As you all know Nate and I began several designs that would convert the M151 uni-body design so that it would become a body tub with bolt on front and rear fenders and other parts.
We also like the one magor thing that American General who build the Growler as well as Encores adaptations with a thicker guage of steel.
Why shun these vehicles or the ideas that came with them?
Just because they were not assigned to a Military Unit?
That don't cut the mustard in our book!
You sometimes need to be a proffesional under sea welder to do welding on certain parts of the M151 series vehicle...LOL
So Nate and I were looking to find a way to have panels molded at a local foundry but the cost was just to steep for our income.
Well we found another way to do what we both wanted to do and it's going to happen.
HOW WE PLAN TO BUILD OUR PROTOTYPES OR WHOM WE HAVE RECRUITED TO DO THE BODY WORK WILL BE SECRET FOR NOW...SORRY!
But not what we plan to build.
I have made several different frames and also experimented with a few other frames like the M998 HMMWV frame.
All this messing around in the Tech feild has led to some great building ideas that Nate and I are drafting up blue prints for!
The first is a longer wider M151 design.
Think of a XM408 6x6 legth perhaps but as a $X$ at least for now!...LOL
Heck if Diamler Chrysler can add 8 inches to the Wrangler why can't we add that or more to a New Mutt design?
Many people forget that Diamelr Chrysler also builds several Military versions of the Wrangler Rubicon, I have posted pictures of them in the past.
We have recruited a few local body panel companies to work with our new measurements for the rear floor, front floors, transmission tunnel and so on and so forth...LOL
I have always liked the Old Dodge Military truck that looks like a Giant Jeep and that got me thinking as did Nate...WHAT if we did this and that.
That Dodge what ever it's called is similar in a old fashioned way to a HMMWV when it comes to size.
Anyway by building a wider solid frame, and wider body tub we find the room we need to install larger engines and tranny's!
Then the spot weld nightmare can also be mostly eliminated by building each new extended part to bolt in place.
We can still keep weight down by not over doing it on the thicker guage of body tub steel.
I have mentioned these Ideas before but never had the oppurtunity until this week to make a go for it!
I prefer the independent suspension so we plan to use fairly easy excessible HMMWV suspension racks that will be slightly modified with a lift kit no availible on the open market for the H1.
We are not talking out our asses on this new frontier we are going to build 5 of these prototypes.
We will also borrow ideas from all of the M151 series vehicles, like the center support on the early M151, one with a Tail Gate, will be built.
One will have the M151-M151A1 fenders, and one will have the A2 drop fenders, a larger modified version of ROPS will be on at least two of these vehicles.
We even considered a Grill that would look like a MA/GP slat grill!
Power packs will be gas and deisel, 5 speed standard and a automatic as well.
These Tech ideas are all going to happen before I die...LOL
You may all think we are crazy but heck who would not want to own a super MUTT???
We are currently going forth to copyright everything we have put together and catologed so no big company can steal our Prototype Mods.
If someone takes interest and wants to build them in the future we will glady sign everything over to who ever build us some professional ones from a factory...LOL
Work has already been ordered on larger boltable body panel parts as of this week.
We plan to auction two off once completed.
Maybe to raise money to fight Cancer and or also to raise money to find a cure for HIV/Aids too.
I have to do this to say I told you so to all them idiots in the past at DRMO and the filthy politicians who lined their pockettes while our hard earned Tax money was wasted in DEMIL!
In those motorpool days any mods were often just forbidden or were never in the budget, well this time I am in control of the damned budget!
Watch us make some magic guys it is going to happen.
Bleddyn, Nate and micki Cynfyn
Your Team G503 Race Team
Bleddyn, Nate and Micki Cynfyn
Team G503 Ford Racing
1962 Ford M151-LC Desert Racer
1965 Ford M151A1 Stock
1967 Ford M151A1 Stock
1979 AMG M151A2/ 1986 AMG M998 Hybrid