Posts Tagged ‘1950’

Suburban Rear Quarter Panel Holes

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

The full rear quarter panels for the 1947-55 Chevy/GMC Suburban were made all the same at the metal stamping manufacturer.  To save money these panels were not made different if the Suburban was to have the double doors or the tailgate style opening in the rear.

Thus, when the Suburban was provided with a lift and tailgate combination the 4 holes for the “double barn door” hinges in the quarter panels were filled with rectangular rubber plugs.  This was not just for appearance but prevent rain water from reaching the body interior.

These photos show the plugs painted in body color; however it is questioned if this is correct.  By 1950, Suburban buyers had the choice of the 12 pickup colors.  It would have been more economical for all to have black rubber plugs instead of 12 boxes with the optional color prepainted plugs on the assembly line.

The other thought:  These plugs were painted when the full body was given its final color.  This would mean GM planned on the enamel body paint being of the quality that would successfully adhere to rubber over the years.  We don’t usually see this combination in other GM vehicles.  Special paint for rubber only is used!

Comments on how it really occurred:  Email us at jcarter@oldchevytrucks.com

Aftermarket Dual Rear Wheels

Monday, April 18th, 2011


What a unique invention. When you have a 1947 through 1959 single rear wheel 3/4 or 1 ton GM truck and need more pulling power, this is the answer. American ingenuity at its best!

This new steel center hub extension includes eight long bolts to reach the original wheel studs. This holds the factory wheel in place and then provides a threaded end for the original eight lug nuts which are holding another matching wheel.

The buyer of this aftermarket kit just had to be sure his new outer tire was the same height as the original inner tire.

Pictures and data from Scott Golding, Stratton, NE.
email: scottandbetty@hotmail.com

1950 Chevrolet 2 Ton Delivery Truck

Wednesday, August 25th, 2010

Year/Make 1950 Chevrolet 2 Ton
Owner: Coca Cola


1950 coca cola delivery truck


Coca Cola’s big yellow delivery truck can been seen for a long way.

GM Vintage 1950 Overdrive

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Chevrolet’s 1/2 ton and car overdrive 3 speed transmission was optional equipment installed on the assembly line during the 1950′s. The reduction of engine RPM’s in high gear resulted in less wear on the drive train as well as additional speed on level roads. Today, this is still important but of increased importance is better fuel economy.

The standard 3 speed transmission gives a 1 to 1 ratio in high gear. The overdrive is rated .7 to 1. The case and main gears are identical in both transmissions. The difference is in the rear extension tail. Here, the Borg-Warner gears electrically drop the RPM’s in the output shaft. GM’s wisdom created the 3 speed overdrive to be the same overall length as their standard transmission. This makes transmission exchanges very uncomplicated. There is no modification in the shift linkage rods or drive shaft.

With several basic tools a person can remove a standard 3 speed and add his overdrive in an hour! No problem if you don’t have the factory dash levers. Simply connect two insulated wires from the solenoid to a small dual position flip switch you add to the end of the shift lever. (It can be bought tat a local auto parts store and taped in place.) The driver can then shift in and out of overdrive using his thumb.

These overdrives were Chevrolet optional equipment from 1955 through the early 1960′s. Though they are becoming difficult to find, they do surface at swap meets, older salvage yards, and from owners totally modernizing their older vehicle. Find one and give your car or ½ ton a different personality!

Exploded View of GM 1950 Overdrive Transmission…PDF Click Here

GMC 302 Install in Old Chevrolet

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

The Trials and Tribulations of Installing a GMC 302 engine into a 1950 3/4 ton Chevrolet Pick Up

by Joel Baumbaugh

Background: About 5 years ago I “upgraded” the engine in my truck from a 216 to a 235. Lately I have felt that I wanted/needed a little more torque (especially while the bed is full of something heavy) and while one option was to rebuild and re-cam my 235 and another was to install a Chevy 350/400 (or 700R), the “popular” literature said that I could also install a GMC 270 or 302. Just to be “different”, I decided to go the latter route.

The Source: I wanted a “running” engine that I could just drop in with a minimum of trouble. The engine I found for my project was a 1959-1962 GMC engine from a School Bus. The bus had been converted into a “camper” and had then caught on fire and burned beyond repair. At first glance, the outside of the engine looked kind of rough. I checked the compression (all cyls. were at 160 lbs./sq.in), looked at the plugs (all light brown), listened to it run (no strange noises) ‘ the oil pressure was 55-60 lbs./sq.in. at idle and the rocker arms/valve area was pretty clean of sludge. Short of pulling the pan, this was as far as I could go. I bought it, brought it home and cleaned it up.

Problems/Solutions: The engine had a LOT of bus-type accessories that I did not want/need. The “massive” front Crank Pulley (the damper pulley assay) had a three-groove pulley ‘ “way” too long! After careful measurement I found that I was able to replace it with a single groove pulley off of a 235 (I replaced the front seal at this time). The water pump shaft was “very” long as well and sported a 2-groove pulley. I removed the pulley and ground/cut the pulley shaft back. The water pump on this engine did not seal against the block and/or head. This one was bolted to a thick steel plate which held a tensioner (for a double groove pulley) which weighed about 30 lbs. (weight I did NOT want) and was bolted to the front of the block. I found a rear plate (and gaskets) for the water pump from a place here in town that rebuilds water pumps. Bolting the water pump directly to the block saved me another ½ inch in engine length. The owner also sold me a flange to press on to the shaft so that I could bolt a new water pump pulley onto the pump (the original Chevy is shaft diameter is ½ inches and the 302 is 3/l8 inches). To find a pulley which would align with the bottom crankshaft pulley required a number of trips to local junk/wrecking yards. I finally found one that was the perfect depth (I’m not sure if it was originally from a Chevy or not). I had to enlarge the center hole to make it fit the GMC shaft.

The 302′s “bus” generator weighed about 80 lbs. I found that the 235′s generator mounting flange’s bolt-holes fit perfectly! However, I “did” need to reverse it and then elongate the mounting holes so that I could slide it forward to align the generator pulley groove with the crank and water pump pulleys.

The carburetor that came with the engine was a joke. It even had a governor on it. I had the option to purchase a better 2-barrel carburetor or to step up a little bit and buy a 4-barrel manifold. I did the latter. I had a (gasp) Ford ‘Autolite’ carburetor in my garage (about 400 CFM) from a ’289′ which I bolted up to the manifold and it works GREAT! – Especially with the stock low-performance camshaft. I also at this time “upgraded” my carburetor linkage. I went to an off-road dune buggy place and purchased a new accelerator pedal and a push-pull cable. Configuring the carburetor linkage from the stock pedal to the new manifold/carburetor would have been a nightmare otherwise.

Radiator: The 302 engine “is” 1 1/2 to two inches longer than the 325 (which is longer than the 216). This means that the radiator no longer fits into its original location. I tried to modify the radiator mount to put the radiator inside. Don’t even try. The radiator needs to mount on the front of the mount. This means that you will have to borrow your neighbor’s “Saws-All” with a metal cutting blade and cut away the top and front cross bracing on the radiator support, the lower front wind deflecting metalwork at the bottom (behind the grill) and drill 6 new holes in the mount for the radiator. The upper support that contains the hood latch will need to have a rectangle cut in it to fit the top of the radiator in it as well. I now have about 2 inches clearance between my water pump pulley and the radiator. I use an electric thermostatically controlled (pusher) fan in front of my radiator. It’s quieter, doesn’t rob the engine of power (better mileage) and the water pump may last longer without the fan blades. Note: My friend and neighbor has a 1951 GMC. I have measured his engine compartment. From his bellhousing to the radiator flange he had 4 more inches to play with, so I’d bet that he originally had a longer GMC engine (he runs a Chevy 235 now), and that he could make the conversion to a 270 or 302 without any cutting being necessary.

Front Mount Yes the 302 engine “is” 1 1/2 to 2 inches longer than the 235. The front mount on the Bus’ 302 was a weird set-up which caused the engine to sit at an angle (like a Chrysler slant 6). This saved some height in the bus’ engine compartment. However, after removing the bus setup spacers, I found that the two bolt holes on the mount (on the bottom of the timing cover/block) were at right angles to the block and aligned perfectly with my truck’s original 216 mount so I was able to exchange them and everything was level ‘ no oil pan removal required! I then drilled two (new) holes through the truck’s cross member, put in longer frame-mounting bolts and added some extra rubber padding (cut from a truck mud-flap) to keep the mount from rubbing on the frame and so far its worked ok.

Rear: The bus engine I purchased was coupled to an automatic transmission. That meant that it had a flex plate (that the converter bolted to) instead of a flywheel. The flex-plate (with the old ring-gear) was MUCH larger than the flywheel I would need. I found a flywheel from a GMC 270 that fit. Although the flywheel’s diameter and the number of teeth are the same as the 1955-1959 Chevrolet, the crankshaft bolt pattern is different between the GMC’s and the Chevrolet’s. The flywheel bolts are different as well (1/2 inch dia. instead of 3/8′s”). Although I tried using an impact wrench, a gorilla on steroids must have put on the old flywheel bolts. I broke a socket and finally had to remove 3 of them with a chisel. The 3/8″ GMC flywheel bolts are not available ANYWHERE. I went to an industrial bolt supply place and bought six more grade 10 bolts. I had the heads machined thinner (like the originals) as otherwise they protrude into the pressure plate/clutch plate area and will cause binding problems. I then carefully shortened the bolts (watch those threads ‘ I put a tap on the inside of the bolt and then backed it off to remove the burrs) to match the original length as they otherwise hit the block behind the flywheel (close tolerances here…).

The pressure and clutch plates and throw-out bearing match those of a Chevy 1955-1959 10- inch set. The 302 had a roller bearing pilot bearing instead of a oillite bronze bushing. I replaced it with another roller bearing and the transmission (its a Saginaw off of a 1969 Camaro) fit in just fine.

I used my original bellhousing off of the 1950 Chevy. The old GMC one was slanted to match the front motor mount. The starter location in the GMC bellhousing was for a larger diameter flexplate and would not work. The GMC starter had the wrong number of teeth to work on the 10″ flywheel. The starter which (I found) works, was a 12 volt 9 tooth (for a 164 tooth flywheel) from a 1955 Chevrolet and works great.

Oil and Water lines: There is an oil line on the front of the block up to the head. This supplies the oil to the rocker arms. Leave it alone. I tied (T’d) into it and put on a 100 PSI oil pressure gage as my Chevy gage only goes to 30 lbs. This engine NEEDS an oil filter. If you block off the oil supply line on the driver’s side of the block you will not get ANY oil pressure in the engine. I “T’d” into the pressure side and connected up my original oil pressure gage (it’s a stretch, but it reaches). Yes, it’s always pegged on 30 lbs., but gives me a warm fuzzy feeling when I look down. The head has an external water line that goes to the thermostat housing. Leave it alone. You can put a “T” in and hook up your temperature gage (with an adapter), but I put mine further down on the block (there’s a fitting there), because it was always showing “cold” on the gage. Be careful of that temperature gage line. It cost me close to $50.00 the last time I had to replace it. The radiator hoses clamped right up although the GMC diameter on the lower radiator hose is one step smaller.

The 302′s distributor had a governor on it and was centrifugal advance only. The bottom of the distributor was different than the Chevy, but my Chevy distributor “guts” bolted right in. I was able to put in a spring kit (the GMC centrifugal advance springs were so thick that they could have been used for front struts on a Honda) and I now have vacuum advance as well.

The GMC fuel pump leaked so I replaced it with a Pep Boys electric fuel pump. I couldn’t find a replacement anywhere locally, so I guess I’ll have this one rebuilt for a “spare”.

I had a split cast-iron exhaust manifold on the Chevy 235. I “may” get a header for this motor in the future, but in the mean time I had the muffler shop split the 302′s three-inch header pipe into the two existing exhaust pipes.

And, how is it?

Well, pretty good. I have a LOT more torque. This means that I can get up to freeway speeds without wishing for bike-pedals for a little more push. I have 36″ tires on 6″ Chevy rims on the back so I’m only turning 2,800 RPM at 60 mph. The larger tires had made the truck a little “logy” getting started with the 235 ‘ now it “steps right out” from a light. I haven’t checked the gas mileage yet. I was getting 17 mpg City and 20 mpg highway with the old 235. I’d guess that I’ve lost about 2 mpg with this engine/carburetor combination.

Future When this old engine is due for a rebuild, I’ll probably buy some “lighter” pistons and a little hotter (than stock) cam. The pistons will help the engine “rev” faster, be easier on the bottom end and will probably result in higher gas mileage due to their weight difference and the higher compression. The cam will help volumetric efficiency and give me a little more torque and higher end. Of course I’ll have everything balanced ‘ IMHO it’s worth the extra money.

I hope that this story helps someone else. Remember the 270 and 302 are “basically” the same engine so I imagine that your situation will be pretty similar to mine no matter what you find. It took “6 hours” using hand tools to remove the old engine and 4 days to put back in the new.

Joel

UPDATE

Since the project above, I decided to rebuild the 302 as it was burning a little oil. I bored the cylinders out .125 thousands (it’s now 320 cubic inches), put in a “Patrick’s” M4F camshaft, and put in “Venolia” 10.5×1 forged pistons. I had everything balanced of course. I had to find and purchase another head as the old one had a crack in it (hence the oil burning). When I got the new (used) head, I pulled out the valves and cleaned/smoothed up the intake and exhaust ports/passages which were pretty rough castings, and then put in new late-model exhaust valves (I went to 1.5″) and hardened seats for unleaded gas, and I’m using Chrysler “440″ valve springs. I’m now running a “Holley” 600 CFM carburetor (vacuum secondaries) with “Fenton” cast-iron headers. When first started up on a dyno (and not really broken in yet) it recorded 286 hp and 362 ft/lbs torque; not bad for a “street” engine; At this time I also put in a T-5 GM transmission from a ’91 V-8 Camaro (the V-8 transmission has better bearings to handle the torque) with a tail-shaft from a S-10 Pick-up (the shifter was almost in the same place) – so now I have a 0.74 overdrive. At 75mph (a fender-slapping speed for the old pick-up) I’m only turning 2,100 RPM; I had a new driveshaft made as the transmission yoke splines on my old one looked worn.

So far, I’m pretty happy with my set-up. Happy “wrenching” everyone;. ..jb

Joel Baumbaugh

Suburban Paint Colors

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

During the beginning of the Advance Design years (1947-1949) new Chevrolet Suburbans were sold in one color combination; Channel Green (light) on the lower body and Fathom green (dark) on the upper.

Unless the customer paid extra for a specific paint such as for school bus use or a commercial paint color for a company, the two tone green was the color your received.

Beginning in 1950 this changed. Chevrolet began also offering 12 colors as on pickups and large trucks.

suburban paint colors 1

The following is from a 1950 Chevrolet announcement pamphlet showing changes in trucks that year

suburban paint colors 1

1950 Chevrolet

Saturday, January 1st, 2005

Owner: Tim Kane

1950 chevrolet pick up truck

This is the restored 1950 Chevy 1/2 ton, 3100 series, my grandfather bought to use on his farm. It now has just over 15K original miles with the factory Firestone’s still on the truck. Everything is as it came from the dealer, with the exception of the wood in the bed, the exhaust system, and the paint.

Original Owner — Arthur J Kane – Colon, MI
Current Owner — Timothy J Kane Jr. Battle Creek MI
216 C.I. — 6 cylinder
3 Speed manual transmission
15,365 original miles

1950 chevrolet pick up truck 1950 chevrolet pick up truck 1950 chevrolet pick up truck

1950 chevrolet pick up truck

1950 Chevrolet 3100

Friday, October 1st, 2004

Owner: Paul Frey

1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck

1950 Chevy 3100 deluxe cab, this truck was recently refinished by CSCC this spring. Paint custom Sikkens glacier blue pearl.

Modified 283with 327 heads, Saginaw 4-speed, Camaro rear end, Chevy 2 front end, 12 volt conversion, Crager street star, custom Ash bed made by owner, AM/FM/CD player. This month the interior will be completely redone as well a new wiring harness installed.

This year I have received 7 placements in top five and two best of paints. In January it will be shown at the World of Wheels in Chattanooga after the interior is finished.

Some interior option will include: electric windows. Custom door panels, leather bench seat (Caddy) new gauges, console Billet Specialty steering wheel (classic), color matched to outside, new wire harness, hidden wires under hood smoothed firewall.

Best regards,
Paul Frey

1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck 1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck 1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck

1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck 1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck

1950 GMC

Tuesday, June 1st, 2004

Owner: Roger Uttecht

1950 gmc pick up truck

My name is Roger Uttecht. My truck is a 1950 GMC 3/4 ton Pick-up. I did a frame up restoration on my truck over a 2 year period. I used quite a few parts from Jim Carters antique truck parts. The Website provided me with quite a bit of information about what my truck was originally equipped as well as paint colors on the engine and so forth. The truck was originally green, but I painted it to look like a 1952 Chevy Dime Bank that Harley Davidson Motor company put out in 2000. I am the General Manager at Frontier Harley-Davidson in Lincoln, NE. This was the first time that I have ever done anything as intense as this, but it was a labor of love. I had a 1949 GMC when I attended the University of Nebraska so I always wanted to restore one after graduation. I have restored everything to original except for the paint. I stained the hard yellow pine instead of painting it and added white wall tires. The engine is a 228c.i. GMC with a 4 speed transmission. I love driving this old truck, it gets looks wherever we go, and an occasional story from a few people too. I hope it is good enough for your feature truck section. thanks.

Roger Uttecht

1950 gmc pick up truck 1950 gmc pick up truck 1950 gmc pick up truck

1950 gmc pick up truck 1950 gmc pick up truck 1950 gmc pick up truck

1950 gmc pick up truck

1950 GMC Longbed

Tuesday, July 1st, 2003

Owner: Dusty Destler

1950 chevrolet pick up truck

This 1950 GMC longbed 1/2 ton was restored by Dusty Destler, 17, and his father, Dave. Dusty’s first vehicle, he bought it when 14, and he and Dave restored it this last two years. Dusty drove it to high school his senior year, and now is off to college. It’s his daily driver.

The truck runs a 235 ci six from a 1955 model, has been converted to 12-volt, higher rear end ratio. Steering, suspension, and drum brakes are all stock. Wheels are 15″ Panthers, 8 inch and 7 inch, with BF Goodrich T/A radials. Interior has been done in grey tweed, fully insulated throughout with DynaMat Xtreme (rides quiet as a Range Rover), highlighted by lots of chromed trim. Bed is fitted with high gloss oak wood, with stainless strips and hardware.

1950 chevrolet pick up truck

1950 Chevrolet 3100

Monday, April 1st, 2002

Owner: Mark DeMonaco

1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck

This is my 1950 Chevrolet 3100 Series pickup truck. I bought it around seven years ago for a measly $800.00. It was in decent shape.

No chrome and primered and painted about eight different colors. It has a small block 350 motor backed by a 350 turbo trans. It rolls on 14 x 6 inch rims with G 78 – 14 Commander 2 1/4 whitewalls. Shortly after I purchased it, I tore it down to just the cab and the motor. That’s about the same time I got lazy so the truck sat for the next five years. During which I started buying all the chrome and accessories and pretty much every thing else. Before I knew it the millennium was upon us. I said to myself that I wasn’t going to start out a new decade without the truck so about six or seven months prior to 2000 it got in gear and went to work. I sent it out to get primered and what a nightmare that was. It came back worse than when I sent it. The people did a terrible job. So all my prep work from before was a loss. I had to sand it down to get it the least bit presentable. With the help from some good friends of mine ( you know who you are ) it was finished by the first part of December…..Just in the nick of time. After that it’s been a series of progression. More accessories, then the flame pinstripping, installed a stereo ( CD player, amp and several speakers ), flame thrower kit in the exhaust, etc… etc….

I’m sure that I’m not even close to completion (are they ever really finished? ) My next big project is to install some sort of air assisted suspension….

Thanks for everything,
Mark DeMonaco
Mdemonaco@aqmd.gov

1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck 1950 chevrolet 3100 pick up truck

1950 Chevrolet

Sunday, July 1st, 2001

Owner: Joe Clark – Knoxville, Tenn.

1950 chevy pick up truck

It took me 3 years to rebuild this truck from scratch. I did all the work myself, painting, body work, and mechanical (even restored the radio), all with the help from the folks at Jim Carter. This truck is original except that I substituted a 235 (disguised to look like a 216), converted it to 12 volts, put in an alternator, and used walnut for the bed. This was my first restoration and, thanks to the folks at Jim Carter Antique Truck Parts, I can’t wait to do the next one!

Joe Clark
Knoxville, Tennessee

1950 chevy pick up truck 1950 chevy pick up truck 1950 chevy pick up truck

1950 chevy pick up truck 1950 chevy pick up truck 1950 chevy pick up truck

1950 chevy pick up truck

1950 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton

Tuesday, May 1st, 2001

Owner: Don Forbes, Sterling CO

1950 chevrolet 1/2 ton pick up truck

I bought my truck several years ago and have been using Jim carters for parts since then. We bought the disc brake kit from you as well as the wood for the bed, and a few other parts here and there. The truck has a 350 Chevy motor power disc brakes with a 79 olds cutlass rear end. We have won two second place trophies so far. I still have a ways to go though.

I have always had great service from Jim Carters.
Thanks Don Forbes

1508 East 23rd St. Independence Mo. 64055   |   Phone: 1.800.842.1913

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