Cut Mutt

G503 General Discussion and Chat Board where users can discuss any topic about their jeeps. Jeep Use both On and Off Road, Handy & Safety Tips. Topics that don't belong on the Technical Boards, such as personal restoration progress etc. It functions as a Clubhouse.
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Cut Mutt

Post by Mark Jesic » Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:30 am

Seeing one of our members was showing off his new Mutt (rightly so ) .He was saying it was "Uncut". I had heard that surplus Mutts were diagonally cut, but why was this?? Incidentally, we do have quite a few Mutts over here in the U.K.

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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by artificer » Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:07 pm

As one who was nearly killed as a passenger in one in Vietnam that rolled over & into a rock quarry 150 feet below then spending nearly 5 months in hospital, I can tell you exactly why.
They were considered too dangerous to sell to the public on disposal because they were unsafe & too much of a liability:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M151_%C2% ... lity_truck
Probably mentioned in here but they were initially cut in half. When that wasn't successful in keeping them off the roads they were cut diagonally into quarters & eventually they were supposed to be crushed @ disposal by running over them with bulldozers.
The Australian military never used them.
There were a few around though that were on permanent loan after GI's left them unattended & unsupervised.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Mark Jesic » Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:18 pm

Thanks for the interesting reply and wikipedia post John, this was really interesting. Now i know why they cut so many up. Glad you survived that horrific ordeal, i bet you keep well away from them ?

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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by W. Winget » Tue Nov 13, 2018 3:24 pm

Oddly enough, the basic and A1's generally escaped cutting, A2's are rarer due to regulation changes (below). The Navy/USAF fell under different disposal regs and either dumped them overboard or just released some at their own disposal sales without cutting. Some like one I picked up from a previous owner that bid and won it from DRMO sales, were residue and stripped, then sold as non-vehicle scrap, basically needing all the engine, trans, seats and sorted parts re-installed to become a vehicle.
From memory, 1st DRMO sales were mandated they be torch cut in half, followed by change to X cut in quarters, followed by you can disassemble them for all the parts you wanted off them, then the remaining bodies were crushed on-post before being sold as scrap metal.
This was due to creative remanufacturing techniques of welding halves and even quartered trucks back into vehicles. The parts removal eventually banned removal of the suspension components, so sales bidders that had very expensive 'bonded and insured' coverage to enter post with torches and tools, could strip everything but the body shell, and suspension, (maybe the front suspension could go, I've heard no differentials on some sales) so dealers that thought they could buy them, then obtain bodies and assemble full vehicles were in for a shock as regs changed, and typically differ at installation locations. So entrepreneurs came up with replacement bodies very close but not original like the Encore MUTT using all the removed and surplus parts.
One original A2 MUTT actually came up about three - four years ago not requiring demil, and lasted about three days before they pulled it as someone helped elaborate on the regs. to Defense Disposal/Gov liquidation

The debate goes on, are they safe in the right hands? or deadly traps to be prohibited from our streets due to potential to roll. The only recent civilian comparison would be a Suzuki Samurai which had roll over potential, but was never pulled off the market. You average SUV should be rolling over everyday as the rear independent suspension is comparable in concept with higher speeds. Sway bars and angles of design make all the difference.
Desirability means uncut examples are worth more, a reweld may or may not be done well, but may work perfectly for some off road fun within design limitations.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Ben Dover » Tue Nov 13, 2018 4:41 pm

The M-151's can be dangerous in the hands of the wrong person, especially unwary civilians who are unaware of it's handling faults. The Army has punishment concerning mishandling of their vehicles that civilians who drive foolish do not. The demil arguement will go on forever but it was a wise move.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by dpcd67 » Tue Nov 13, 2018 5:26 pm

We had the M151 during the first twelve or 14 years of my career and I rode, and drove, about a million miles (maybe slightly fewer) in all three versions. They were dangerous and prone to roll overs (as Artificer experienced, in a bad way). I drove them in the field because many of the drivers assigned to me could not drive and to prevent both of us being killed.
Which is why we installed the ROPS kits in the late 70s and early 80s. We had lots of soldiers injured, and killed in them.
They are an abomination, and should not have ever been made; (Ford designed them), and are not Jeeps in any way. Yes we called them Jeeps. NO ONE ever called them "Mutts"; I have no idea where that term came from but it was not used in any unit to which I was ever assigned.
Anyway, I would not take one for free. They are hard to maintain; and are not as reliable as the Willys type, and are dangerous. One piece transmission/transfer, and all the U joints are prone to fail.
I remember watching hundreds of the last of them being demilled, in the mid 90s; as my office on RIA overlooked the DRMO lot. The last ones had to be crushed with a tracked vehicle after they removed the drive trains. So they could not weld them back together.
M151s are junk, in the strongest terms, I hate them.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by W. Winget » Tue Nov 13, 2018 6:12 pm

Never saw one rolled while in all my years service. Drove the Company Commanders around on occasion, did plenty of Courtesy Patrols with them, Drove one in Reforger with rotted out floorboards for two weeks in the snow swapping out with the driver without problems and years as private owner with several. Last issue one I had was an MP jeep with MG mount and no ROPS in 1988 Fort Stewart as HUMVEEs were replacing them, plenty of trails chasing fielded Bradleys around the field, no issues. My TOW equipped MUTT is very top heavy, I haven't tried to roll it since obtaining it in '95, but she bounces all over and I drive it knowing HOW to drive it.

Heck I provided the JAG office at Benning with the manuals and info to defend against a lawsuit blaming both the Army and Ford (had worn out components, roll bar and driving in sand above 15mph turning sharply had rolled one owned by a Civilian I bought it from whom subsequently tried a lawsuit)

ROPS was a mistake, it made them more unstable and wasted BIG dollars. HUMVEE rolls over just as much or more, (didn't have rollover training setups for MUTTS, but have them for newer vehicles....) the M900 series was the most prone yet to rolling (Army Safety stats, transmission locked up stalling engine and locking power steering out, hence A2 with ABS...no one's demilling them??? A lot of BS and bad rep rumors are out there about MUTTS
Yeah, it's design was SOOO terrible all the military vehicles have used independent suspension since it's invention except some heavy trucks.

Problem with posting here is your not in the MUTT category and those without them, may favor G503 vehicles.

It's just another vehicle, no one needs to walk in front of it with a lantern through town, and progress moves development forward.
Soldiers hotrodded the 1918 Liberty Truck too violating orders and driving at an insane speed above 14mph...
Gheez...
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Bart1015 » Tue Nov 13, 2018 7:10 pm

I have no experience driving a M151 in the military but I have completely restored several uncut units. I have found they are every bit as reliable as our MB/GPWs and they have much better brakes. Yes, I know this is subject to debate.

I really like the M151s and eventually I would like to find an Encore for a ranch/hunting truck. The Encore was a civilian made body using surplus parts. The bodies were better made and have thicker metal. They are really nice units but they seldom come up for sale in Ca.

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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by dpcd67 » Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:21 pm

Of course, if very carefully driven they are safe; but it is the inherent unseen faulty design that is, the danger; the poorly designed suspension would tuck under and the vehicle would roll. Well documented. There is a reason there are three versions of them, and the most strict demil instructions issued for them. Like the Corvair; "Unsafe at any speed."
Still don't like them and have lots of experience with them. (None rolled in any of the units I was in, but plenty of others did).
True; I like the solid frame jeeps much better. For good reasons.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by paracord12bravo » Tue Nov 13, 2018 11:02 pm

first demill at Knox and Campbell in the late 60 's was to cut the frame rail right in front of the firewall. very easy fix.

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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by W. Winget » Wed Nov 14, 2018 6:48 am

Regarding name calling:
HUMVEE (M998 and multiple variations after it)
MRAP (Any number of armored vehicles with V shaped hulls or hardened protective structure)
LAV (Canadian produced 8 wheel Armored US Marine vehicle)
Stryker (M1126 Variant of the LAV)
CUCV (Dodge or Chevy commercial vehicles)
Gamma Goat (M561)
Goer (M520 ....behemoth of a truck)
Otter (M76 troop carrier)
Weasel (M29)
Eager Beaver (Deuce, Deuce and a half, Two and a half ton, M35)
Mule (M274)
MUTT (M151)

So yeah there were three variants of MUTT, the 1st change was merely to add turn signals, a driver seat two position simplification and a blackout marker light bracket to the rear. Nothing mechanical changed, then the upgraded A2 which Ford had recommended a Solid Axle but the ARMY said NO to the design change as it went backward in tech...

I've watched German 4 wheeler club members back in the 80's take their MUTTs under mud covering the hood, repeatedly driving back and forth until they made it through tank ditches which were created by M88's, M60's and M113's. Crazy to see them do it, but an absolutely stubborn vehicle which Unimogs were having difficulty in the same boggs.
They served and earned their stripes, we can't erase history.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Wolfman » Wed Nov 14, 2018 8:09 am

The biggest problem with an M-151 rolling was in the suspension design. As the vehicle rises, the wheel camber increases. In other words, the wheel "tucks" under. When in this condition, the vehicle is more subject to rolling over. If the wheel remained vertical as it moved up and down, it would have been much more stabile.
Another problem, smaller vehicles, with narrower wheel tracks, following larger tracked or wheeled vehicles. The smaller vehicles either have wheels on one side in one track or the other. Back and forth. Deeper the ruts, worse it is.
Made me glad I was driving an M-113 a1.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by dpcd67 » Wed Nov 14, 2018 8:38 am

Yes, they were very capable vehicles with good ground clearance and speed. The NDCC tires were crap, but that is another story. I also spent many days on interstate convoys with them, driving from Ft Stewart to Ft Bragg, and to Eglin AFB. They have a huge training area. As well as literally years of being with them in the field, at the NTC, Korea, Ft Knox, and a lot more places and miles, over a career.
Anyway, the term MUTT was used early on during development, but it did not carry into service like the other common vehicle names did; no one in the Army ever called it that. They were Jeeps or Quarter Tons. Only those who did not serve with them, call them MUTTs.
Here are a couple of excerpts from Govt reports on them:
1967: “The M151 was involved in 3,538 accidents that resulted in 104 deaths and 1,858 injuries.” This report went on to state that: “36 percent of the accidents were due to the vehicle overturning in a non-collision situation.” Most of these were blamed upon “operators not being sufficiently trained,” and/or “operator error.” In short, the military continued to blame its troops for driving them too fast and/or cornering too sharply.
And. "...tests of the M151A1 in which it was found that the rather primitive swing-arm suspension contributed to oversteer. This oversteer, along with the fact that they didn’t lean into corners like vehicles with conventional suspensions, gave the driver no warning when the vehicle reached a point of instability. Upon reaching this point, it took only a tug on the steering wheel, a bit of over-correction, or a sudden lane-change, either at low speeds when rounding a corner, or at higher speeds on a straight level road, for the vehicle to go out of control and flip over."
True, you can't change history. Just be careful with them. As with all antique vehicles; they all can be unsafe when driving them too aggressively.
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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Mark Jesic » Wed Nov 14, 2018 10:38 am

Guys, fantastic replies, my thanks go to you all.

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Re: Cut Mutt

Post by Chuck Lutz » Wed Nov 14, 2018 12:02 pm

The G503 also had problems in the restoration world because Baby Boomers (and others) watched too much "Rat Patrol" shows where they are seen sailing through the air with the greatest of ease and being driven by madmen behind the wheel. If course the drivers were not just actors who were told "Go like hell over the top of those sand dunes and then cut across it sideways for the next shot". The drivers were "professionals", that is, STUNT DRIVERS who were familiar with the characteristics of the G503.

I think I once read they had three times as many jeeps in the film company "motorpool" so they could field enough for each days' shooting and if they broke down or otherwise were sidelined.

GIs carried this "Rat Patrol" mentality into the field long after they had been "taught" how to drive the G503 and the M151 series "jeeps". Then, like all 19-24 year-olds, they drove them like the guys on "Rat Patrol" did.

In addition, not only did joy-riding lead to roll-overs, but combat situations may have called for a rapid advance to the rear from time to time with enemy bullets/mortars/artillery falling around.

Ask any WWII fighter pilot about some of the trainers they flew and how the stall characteristics for some were quite different from others and how you'd better pay attention or you'd be plowing up dirt.

Ask Vietnam Vet's, the early ones who got the M16 to replace their trusty M14s how they liked them and how they soon found that poor MAINTENANCE meant it might jam up on the early version. Later M16A1a had an assist to ram home the bolt and TRAINING to insure a CLEAN rifle went into the field would save your life.

They got a name for some of this and it is called "Pilot Error", meaning in the case of the M151 roll-overs you needed to be aware of what the vehicle could and could not do. When it cam time to sell them off, too many "Rat Patrol" aficionados were rolling them that the decision to demil them rather than sell a vehicle that could not quite cut it without careful drivers was made.

1) you can't legislate stupid
2) you can't force them to RTM (read the manual)
3) the ROPS was an acknowledgement that you needed to avoid dangerous, sharp maneuvers even though a combat situation might call for them
4) nevertheless, you see M151 series jeeps around all the time because the drivers are aware that a "Rat Patrol" mentality can lead to a roll-over

Hey, the G503 had a Torque Reaction Spring added to the spring pack on the LF side because of oversteering issues when braking. Sounds like they should have destroyed all of them without the TRS rather than sell them off.

Bottom line is....you don't have to drive like a Little Old Lady in either the G503 or the M151 and you do have to be aware of what leads you into a dangerous situation....same as an aircraft stalling on take-off for instance.
Chuck Lutz

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