Foot Rest GPW/MB

1941 - 1945, MB, GPW Technical questions and discussions, regarding anything related to the WWII jeep.
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Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by Ed Roberts » Sun Oct 10, 2021 4:29 pm

Sunday pondering: Does anybody actually use the foot rest "button" to the right of the gas pedal in a Jeep? If so, why? I cannot think of a reason why it would be useful in the field (rough terrain etc.) Seems to me to in the way of the starter switch. I'll sleep better tonite once I know. Best to all, Eddie
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by Bangle 99 » Sun Oct 10, 2021 5:01 pm

If you rest your foot on the rest and touch the starter switch with your toe, you stand a lesser chance of hitting the button wrong and shorting out the switch.



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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by dpcd67 » Sun Oct 10, 2021 6:27 pm

No, it is another useless appendage/relic of the Willys design staff. If it was so good, Dodges would have them.
(It's alleged purpose is to have a steady foot rest to keep the accelerator pedal evenly pressed, over rough ground).
A wishful and ill conceived idea.
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by '42 Peep's Motorpool » Sun Oct 10, 2021 6:42 pm

At first I thought we were talking about the rear seat foot rest, and I was going to say I don't know anyone who really uses those. :lol: Then I read a little more and saw we're talking about the driver foot rest.

I use it often, it was a very handy feature. Many jeeps are missing them, and the drivers aren't used to having them there. If you aren't used to it, you won't miss it, but if you are used to it you will notice it missing very quickly. :lol:

They are a great aid to using the starter switch as noted, you rest your foot on the pad and only use the tip of your boot to press the starter switch. Keeps them from being damaged by people pressing way too hard (using much weight on the starter switch - I've seen people trying to put their full weight on the starter switch, like that will do any good). They also can help when driving off road to steady the right foot.

IMHO the worst thing that they did during WWII, was locate the FE where they did (and the dimmer switch), very little room for the left foot to rest. But we have to love these vehicles as they were made, not how we wish they might have been. 8)
"Peep" was the name used by the Armored Force for the 1/4 Ton truck early in WWII.

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by Gary C V » Sun Oct 10, 2021 9:52 pm

I use it all the time and I have had my GPW on the road legal since 1982, good to use on long trips and over rough ground.

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by dpcd67 » Mon Oct 11, 2021 8:03 am

All my jeeps have them, and I never use them. I learned to drive on vehicles that didn't have one; unlike most WW2 Drivers, who did not drive prior to service. Like the rear foot rest, just only slightly less useless. And a waste of valuable wartime steel on both counts.
As for pressing the starter; that I do not understand at all. You don't need a guide to know how to press a starter switch. Again, if it was such a good idea, all vehicles would have them. They don't.
Reminds me of the PCV valve; Willys got a patent on that during the war; AFTER Dodge had been using it for many years. Shows that the Willys Engineers were, let's say, sleeping.
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by r w devon » Mon Oct 11, 2021 11:22 am

Invaluable on rough ground. Put the right hand edge of your foot on the rest , left hand edge on the pedal, heal on the tranny hump pivot /rock sideways to control the throttle . Shorter lever, more control , less Kangaroo-ing !

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by YLG80 » Mon Oct 11, 2021 11:31 am

I would not be surprised that this foot rest was very useful to keep a constant moderate speed in convoys and avoid ‘hops’.
You have a more precise benchmark on the throttle while the other part of your foot is resting on a steady footrest.
On the other hand there is a manual throttle on the jeep, like in tractors.
But it could be dangerous in a convoys during the night.
But I agree, this is really not a key device😀
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by dpcd67 » Mon Oct 11, 2021 1:14 pm

Then why don't all military vehicles have it; if it is such a good idea?
Been on many convoys, all with vehicles lacking that device; tanks, 113s, 114s, 151s, 551s, Humvees.
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by Ed Roberts » Mon Oct 11, 2021 11:51 pm

Gentlemen, thank you all for your observations. I now know more than I did before and will continue to listen (read) and learn. Love this forum. Best to all, Eddie
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by JIMN » Wed Oct 13, 2021 4:53 pm

I think it makes pressing the starter easier.

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by '42 Peep's Motorpool » Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:49 pm

YLG80 wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 11:31 am
I would not be surprised that this foot rest was very useful to keep a constant moderate speed in convoys and avoid ‘hops’.
You have a more precise benchmark on the throttle while the other part of your foot is resting on a steady footrest.
On the other hand there is a manual throttle on the jeep, like in tractors.
But it could be dangerous in a convoys during the night.
But I agree, this is really not a key device😀
Yves

Hi Yves I agree, that is what I meant by steadying the right foot. I think that was it's main intention, but without the designer's notes who knows. :lol:
"Peep" was the name used by the Armored Force for the 1/4 Ton truck early in WWII.

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by '42 Peep's Motorpool » Wed Oct 13, 2021 5:51 pm

dpcd67 wrote:
Mon Oct 11, 2021 1:14 pm
Then why don't all military vehicles have it; if it is such a good idea?
Been on many convoys, all with vehicles lacking that device; tanks, 113s, 114s, 151s, 551s, Humvees.
Because the military must spend millions to reinvent what's already been invented. :D :lol:

I guess Willys got it right the first time, they forgot about it and moved on to flashier extras. :lol:
"Peep" was the name used by the Armored Force for the 1/4 Ton truck early in WWII.

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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by dpcd67 » Wed Oct 13, 2021 7:41 pm

I'll stick with marginally useful and wasteful wartime accessory, whose utility was so small that literally, no one else wanted it, then, or afterwards. After all, it wasn't a secret invention.
I still don't get how it helps pressing the starter button. And yes, all my jeeps have one.
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Re: Foot Rest GPW/MB

Post by savmag » Thu Oct 14, 2021 2:11 am

I personally consider the driver's foot rest one of the most valuable jeep accessories when offroading in TC low gears. Without it, the driver's foot is not steady at all and the jeep tends to "kangaroo" a lot. (as a fellow member wrote) I tried to drive once the jeep off-road in low gear without using the foot rest and the results were not so good. In TC high range it may not be so much useful but it allows the foot to rest on the floor and not strain the muscles on the upper heel.

Finally, we have also to consider whether during the war, the military boots were impeding the correct pedal operation and thus the foot rest was needed.


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