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M8 Greyhound Restoration

Discussion in 'Military Vehicle Restoration' started by ourtankproject, Jan 29, 2022.

  1. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    Hey! My family and I recently took delivery of an M8 Greyhound, which we intend to restore. It's missing a lot of pieces, some things don't function properly, and we will have a lot of work to do.

    We could certainly use some feedback on this project as we are learning a lot about our vehicle and will soon be searching for parts. Does anyone have any good resources for information about the M8 or where we might acquire some of the things that we will need to bring our Greyhound back to life?

    Specific question I'd love to answer, does any one know where I can go to get the history of the vehicle using the serial number?

    We will be documenting the restoration on YT if anyone would like to follow along. We will certainly need a lot of help with this 17000 pound project. Here is a video of the delivery of our M8:

     
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  2. OpanaPointer

    OpanaPointer I Point at Opana Staff Member Patron   WW2|ORG Editor

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  3. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    I believe our own "Blood and Guts" George Patton may be of assistance. He's got a little expertise in this area.
     
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  4. George Patton

    George Patton Canadian Refugee

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    You are too kind!

    ourtankproject: is there anything in particular you want to know?
     
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  5. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    Patton: At this point I need a lot to complete this restoration so my current goal is to identify sources to acquire the missing pieces and anything else you think would be helpful.
     
  6. Carronade

    Carronade Ace

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    @ourtankproject - do you know what the gun is? Looks nothing like the original 37mm.
     
  7. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    I believe the gun is a a 40mm Bofors.
     
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  8. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    We started prepping the engine compartment in order to lift the engine out. Amazing how easy the field manual makes removing the engine sound. I'm sure it will be a lot harder for us though.

     
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  9. Riter

    Riter Active Member

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    Can't help you, but a classmate's father served in one and I wasn't smart enough to ask him which cavalry troop and squadron back then. He told me that when they saw a German AC with its automatic 2 cm cannon, they'd skedaddled!
     
  10. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Do you plan opening the turret back up?

    Have you decided which unit to make it a part of?

    If not, could I suggest the 30th Cavalry Reconnaissance Troop (Mech) of the 30th Infantry Division? I have more than passing interest in those boys.
     
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  11. Houndsworth

    Houndsworth New Member

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    I used to own a M20 which I drove a lot. I wrote an article for the MVPA magazine Army Motors on doing a big brake job, and another about the hydraulic throttle including how I rigged a cable throttle, which is an option if you can't find the hydraulic parts. I have most of an article done about a peculiarity in the hydraulic clutch system can make it hard to bleed, including a way to fix it the way Ford should have done. Contact me if you take off the transverse armor plate that covers the gas tank. Maybe you can get past issues from MVPA.

    One tip - have an extra operational electric choke as a spare and use a gasket/spacer under it like you see in the manual. I mean don't let the housing get full manifold heat. You have all the M20/M8 manuals I hope.
     
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  12. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    I will be on the look out for the MVPA articles. Thank you for the heads up.

    The M8 already has a cable throttled rigged and a couple people have mentioned that it is an easy work around even if I do restore the hydraulic throttle. Still haven't been able to wrap my head around the concept of a hydraulic throttle that needs to be bled often. Seems like a rather silly design.

    Yes, I have ordered all the manuals and have them on hand. Couldn't imagine not having them to refer back to.
     
  13. ourtankproject

    ourtankproject New Member

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    I hadn't actually given much thought about which unit to make it a part of. I appreciate the suggestion. Most likely when I get to that part of the restoration, I'm going to want to do a fair bit of research.

    Yes, the turret cover will be removed. For both historical accuracy and safety reasons. The steel they used to cover the turret with literally weighs a ton.
     
  14. Houndsworth

    Houndsworth New Member

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    Ford didn't have tightly wrapped, Teflon coated control cables in the 1940s, so hydraulics was the system of choice for these tank-like vehicles. Works great as long as there are no leaks. If they had low friction cables they might have chosen them instead. On the M8 and M20 there is a handy place for running the cable. 18 foot boat throttle cables are pretty easy to connect to levers at each end. I don't think it's necessary to bleed hydraulic systems very often unless there is a leak and the reservoir level goes down and air gets in the line. The reservoir is pretty big, assuming you have one. But changing fluid is a good idea every 4 or 5 years.

    I'll digress and say something about the brake system, which is weak link on M8s and M20s that are not maintained. There is general info here for those not involved with these cars. The 12, 1 1/2 inch wheel cylinders offer a lot of potential for leaks. The goal should be to inspect each one for corrosion pits and hone them away, then watch for leaks, and check the master cylinder level often. I kept a wrench and a 5 inch long dowel handy to use as a dipstick. And change the fluid every few years especially if in a humid climate. Water vapor gets into hydraulic systems via condensation and through the vented MC cap. Brake fluid is hygroscopic meaning it absorbs moisture so water droplets don't form. They would migrate downhill and end up in a wheel cylinder, which occasionally gets hot. Water boils and now you have a spongy pedal. There is an additive in brake fluid that keeps the absorbed moisture from rusting the iron and steel, but it has a life span. After a few years it stops doing its job. If the fluid is corrosive, pits will form on the cylinder walls. Pretty soon the piston seals can't deal with it and they starts leaking.

    My opinion about the stock "donut seals" on pistons like these is they don't handle minor pits well. This is especially true if old and hard. I replaced my pistons with a shorter pistons with conventional cup seal. More flexible rubber on the walls. One of the part numbers for these piston/seal/spring kits is Raybestos WK37. It also happens to be the kit for CCKW rear wheel cylinders. By the way, the small cylinders on your throttle system use the same type of piston/seals.

    It is easy to delay changing brake fluid in these cars because they have a hull and you have to sit in the co-driver seat to fill the MC and it's a little cramped. Then there are the 14 bleed points. Some people go 5 or 8 years on the fluid and then they go get ready to drive to a Veteran's Day parade and what do they find? Several leaks at the wheels, an empty MC, and air in the line. For vehicles like this it's really important to have a pressure bleeder and find a MC adaptor cap with quick connect fitting that will fit. I had a hand-pump type but I drilled and tapped it for an air line so I could dial up 10-12 pounds of constant fluid pressure. I'd put the bottle on the seat, fluid line running to the MC adaptor, and then go around and open bleeders. One man job. A clear hose from bleeder to a catch bottle allows a view of air bubbles or fluid color change. Modern bleeder screws allow hoses to fit tightly. The stock hex fitting is not as good. The MC has a female thread so buy a second cap, drill and tap for a tube with a quick connect on the end that receives the fitting on the bleeder hose. Or find a repair shop that has a PF7 brake fluid exchange machine from BG Products and see if they will sell the universal, expanding plug MC adaptor that they probably never use. It is PF9001 or PF9002 plus the PF9007 expanding rubber seal set. He can order these from the BG rep. These work fine on all these old MCs with female threads. And BG makes some bleeder screw adaptors in different sizes. Hex for the fitting and the other side is a round hole that can accept a silicone hose, which they have. This is somewhat transparent.

    Last comment on the brakes is some of these cars were upgraded to a 3rd Model Bendix truck hydrovac. Big, single piston unit. Much more braking power than the smaller diameter 2nd Model. At the time, the latter units were not rebuildable. Mine had a 3rd Model on it but an internal fluid leak into the can went unnoticed for quite some time. So you can lose fluid with no visible leaks, a good reason to check the MC level occasionally. Anyway, with that rebuilt and all new shoes the car stopped like a six legged cat!

    There - more than most readers want to know!
     

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