Test Indicate Jeeps May Come in Handy for Farm Work After the War


Cedar Rapids Gazette - May 25, 1942


The army's "jeep" - or quarter-ton reconnaisance car - may get a job on the farm after the war is over. In a test conducted by the U.S. department of agriculture, the jeep showed up favorably as a farm power unit.

The test was the first of several by agricultural engineers to find post-war salvage uses for materials and machines. Jeeps, designed by the army, are being made in large numbers, and it is probably they will be in surplus after the war.

Supplied by the war department and a motor car manufacturer, two of these tough and nimble "battle buggies" were tried out by engineers of the bureau of agricultural chemistry and engineering who reported they did good work in plowing, harrowing, and other farm operations (row-crops excepted) at the tillage machinery laboratory at Auburn, Ala.

In the opinion of R. B. Gray, head of the farm mechanical equipment research division of the bureau, the jeep could be highly useful as supplemental power for light plowing, other field work except cultivation of row crops, and for road use. He says that the car is too low and too narrow for the usual row-crop cultivation jobs. Also, he thinks the jeep would perform better at farm work if it were changed to give it a slightly lower gear ration and a lower hitch for plowing.

The jeep plows a little faster, but in comparison with the usual one or two-plow small farm tractors the drawbar horsepower is from one to three less, the pull is about two-thirds, and the horsepower hours per gallon about a third less.

Tested on the dynamometer at the tillage laboratory, the jeep, which has a 60 horsepower engine and four-wheel drive, pulled as much as 1,300 pounds with almost no wheel slippage.

Front wheel drive can be disconnected for road work and light field work. The car has six speeds forward and two in reverse.

Pulling one 16-inch plow and cutting seven inches deep in cotton land, it made the following record:

Drawbar horsepower 8.51, drawbar pull 862 pounds, speed 3.7 miles per hour, fuel (gasoline) per hour 1.35 gallons, drawbar horsepower hours per gallon 6.31, hours per acre 1.72, gasoline per acre 2.32 gallons.

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