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1939 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton

Monday, October 2nd, 2017

On The Liberty, Missouri Square

A part of the family 55 years! Rob Bratcher of Liberty, Missouri is proud to be the owner of his father’s 1939 Chevrolet ½ ton. It was bought in 1963 for miscellaneous chores on the family farm in Kentucky. It had originally been a total work truck and it showed!  Rob’s father used it until some engine problems developed about 1968. It was then set aside and not repaired.

Rob remembers the Kentucky farm in his early years, both before and after the ½ ton was retired.  He always enjoyed time playing on the old pickup. As many years passed since then, Rob’s interest in this truck remained strong. The time finally came when the little pickup needed to find a new owner as it had sat abandon for many years. Rob was the chosen family member to own it. Lucky guy!

It was transported from the Kentucky farm to Rob’s Liberty, Missouri home in the year 2000. Parts of the motor was missing, the wood bed floor rotted (most missing), and the dented fenders gave evidence of it being a working pickup most of it’s life. What now?

It was decided to get it running perfect but to keep its character just like when Grandpa and his father drove it for work projects. Rob said: “If I replaced all the needed parts that were almost beyond repair, it would not be like the old truck I remembered”. It was decided to repair most used items, except mechanicals (they were replaced) and give all sheet metal parts a clear coat. He would call it pre-restoration (preserved and restored).

The non-mechanical items that just had to be fixed was a wiring harness, bed wood, seat covering, and interior paint (1939 grey). Rob realizes it is not a typical restoration but it retains its “Old Truck Look” while still being a driver when needed.   He and his father spent two years bringing this little ½ ton back to life. His father took a strong interest in the restoration because he had been its only driver for many years and he remembered Rob often being with him when it was driven on hauling projects.

This is a perfect example of why trucks were bought over 50 years ago. They were farm workers! They were set aside after hours and the family sedan became the transportation.

In summary, Rob mentioned his 3 dreams in life: Get married and have a family, check. Become a Police Officer, check. Preserve the old truck he remembered, check.
You may contact Rob Bratcher at robert.bratcher@lps53.org

Rob at 3 years old in front of the 1939

When Rob took possession in the year 2000









The Best Home Ever!

More Details on Rob’s Special 1/2 Ton

The 1968 license. Last plate used. 5,000lb gross weight

Bed wood. White Oak, Walnut and Maple (all from very old boards)

Original with one wiper arm

Got paint but no brush? Rob says it was painted with someone’s finger (These truck letters are required
for state truck scales)

Fender support strap. Thousands of pickups used these when the factory under-fender brace deteriorated

Rob added this accessory fog light from the 1930’s

Replacement tail lights and brackets are just right

ID Plate with clutch head screws still in place!

1939 Chevrolet COE, 108″ WB

Monday, June 5th, 2017


If you wonder what are some of the most unusual early GM trucks, you should always remember John and Lisa Milton of Vestal, New York. Their continual search for those with almost no survivors is their passion. Not only do they occasionally find an available rare truck for sale they usually give it a ground up restoration to be like it left the factory.

Among their collection of almost non-remaining GM trucks, one of their favorite is this restored 1939 Chevrolet Cab-Over-Engine (COE). Of the very few remaining, maybe none have this short 108” factory wheel base.

The attached photos show it like the day it was delivered to the dealer in 1939. Swifts Red, 216 six cylinder, 4 speed non synchronized transmission and single speed rear axle. About 2 ½ years were required to complete a total restoration.

It was first seen in a national ad and John was immediately interested. Especially at the $500.00 price.

Having the first year for a Chevrolet COE was just what John wanted. The immediate trip from their home in New York to Janesville, Wisconsin was 1,300 miles with their trailer behind. Unfortunately it was not love at first sight! Photos certainly did not tell the true story. There was so much rust and abuse since it was abandoned outside for many, many years.

They offered only $250.00 just for parts and to help pay for their long trip. Surprise, the owner agreed. After all few people would attempt this major rebuilding of a totaled 39 COE. This would be the owner’s only chance to sell it. Once back in New York, it was placed in their side yard until 2 years later when Lisa said “Move It”. John knew it was time to begin the planned major restoration.

Down to the bare frame and each part evaluated. John had done this many times before, but never to a COE. Fortunately, the cab is much like a more common ½ ton and chassis is so similar to a conventional longer wheel base 1 ½ ton of several years. John’s talents in finding parts, knowing people in the business and many years doing restorations as a hobby made this project possible. Much money was saved by John having his own shop with so much repair equipment. If this project was given to a restoration company, the price would have been prohibitive! John’s many talents even includes sheet metal welding, straightening, and repair plus painting. Even so, the price to complete this project far exceeded the planned budget.

Just the plating of the limited chrome on a COE truck was over $5,000.00. Plating the massive grill was the really big ticket cost. Expensive! There are no grills available so you write the check and try to not think about it!

The not even in fair condition 1939 COE front fenders were repaired. You must restore your own no matter what damage they have as others are about non-existent.

Lisa, has always been a great supporter of John’s passion for unusual early GM trucks. She also helps when time allows however Lisa also has another interest. She raises English bull dogs and miniature pony’s and has done some showing. What a unique couple!!


John’s future plans is to build a 90” wood flat bed for this short COE. It will be much like other after-market beds sold by non GM companies about 75 years ago. This will certainly protect the back of the cab from flying debris, and rear wheel gravel when on the road.

Notice the voltage regulator on the upper left side of the firewall. Other 1939 Chevy trucks still had the voltage cut out attached to the generator. Because of the difficult accessibility to the cutout on a COE, GM used a voltage regulator that would later be on all 1940 models.


In the year 2000, the Milton’s had a major barn fire. All the rare limited survival trucks were lost. At least 10 restored very rare GM trucks were gone! Years later, his current collection of 17 years is almost as good.

John and Lisa had nothing but compliments for their insurance company, JC Taylor. They received a check in the mail within 10 days from that company after the fire. The Milton’s photos of the ashes of the barn and trucks told the story. This time he built an all metal building.

You can reach John and Lisa @ jmilton@stny.rr.com

The real thing!

Don’t look at the flowers!

Waiting for a new bed

Drive line exposed

The massive tall grill

The script says it all

Nice chrome nose

Maybe better than new

one year only interior color

Wish you had one?

No mistakes here

Correct non-pleated seat


Factory accessory re-circulator heater

1937 Chevrolet Panel Truck

Friday, March 31st, 2017


Its 1947! A 14 year old Burt Fulmore thinks of a method of getting to school each day from his home in the small town of Economy to Bass River, Nova Scotia Canada, seven miles away. (This island province in eastern Canada is 450 miles above the US most northern state of Maine).

He knows his father’s 1937 panel truck is not used in the mornings for local deliveries from the family’s general store. So an agreement is made. Burt can drive the panel truck to school and in return he will make local grocery deliveries after classes twice each week for his father’s store. Sometimes he does not get home from deliveries until 7:00p.m., just in time to milk the family cow.

Burt soon transported as many as 10 class mates to school each day often in very bad weather conditions! (.50 cents per week per passenger) His friends did not hesitate to jump in the panel truck and sit on “butter boxes” or the floor for the seven mile ride to school. No, he did not have a driver’s license at 14 years old but the 1937 panel truck was the only option. In those early days, there were no school buses. (Maybe the one local policeman looked the other way as Burt was helping local children get to school). He got his license at 16 years old and continued to take his friends to school two more years until he graduated in 1951.

These pictures show the panel truck and 14 year old Burt posing for the photo in 1949. Note the round grill guard!


Burt then began attending Mount Allison University in New Brunswick, the adjacent province beside Nova Scotia. Yes, his transportation was still the old 1937 panel truck. He drove it 75 miles, to and from college every weekend until he graduated with a mechanical engineering degree in 1954.

To be sure that the truck started easily every time during the winter, each summer Burt did major engine work. Replacement piston rings were added each year to ensure high compression for successful starting. Some of the shims in the rod and main bearings were removed, if needed, which insured the moving bearing surfaces had the correct clearance. He wanted no part of replacing a noisy rod bearing in the Canadian winter after classes in a parking lot.

As with some of us, if you must keep an older vehicle running during your youth it can be more on the fun side as it was for Burt. Therefore, years later he began to think about the “Good Ole Days” in terms of having another vehicle to repair just for old times.

As the years have gone by mostly Chevrolets have become Burt’s addiction. He began with two very rare GM vehicles, maybe the only remaining examples of their kind. These are a Canadian built 1934 Chevrolet Cabriolet (not even 200 made) and a 1937 GMC 1/2 ton (352 produced). Because they were both assembled in Oshawa, Ontario in such limited numbers over 80 years ago, Burt suspects these are the last examples. Being produced in Canada there are some features that are not like those made in the USA. The devout US restorer, soon sees there are things that are Canadian only. Finding those parts from about 80 years ago are almost impossible!

While these two major restorations, were underway Burt kept thinking of his father’s old 1937 Chevrolet panel truck that he drove and repaired for many years. The decision was easily made. If he could ever find another, it would be restored just like the one he drove during his younger years.

He became so sure he could find one, Burt bought a 1937 pickup with an un-restorable body. As the chassis are the same as the panel truck, he completed a major rebuild on all the mechanical parts. It became a new rolling chassis but with no body. He hurried to find a Canadian 1937 panel but with 847 produced there appeared to be almost none. He jumped at one in 1997 in Ontario, but when he got it home it was decided it was “too far gone”. What a loss. See photo. About 2 years later he found a restorable 1937 panel truck in New York. Finally Success!

Oops, Too Far Gone

Finally, a restorable 1937 panel truck

In October 1999 this second panel truck was delivered in Nova Scotia. Burt and Mike (his youngest of four sons) began the detailed body work and paint restoration in Mike’s garage with excellent results. Completion was two years later in 2001. 3 photos below are “under construction”.




This second panel truck is now like new. It is even much better than the one he had for so many years. Even the sides are hand lettered with the company name just like his father’s. The 216 cubic inch engine with 3 speed transmission is just what Burt drove to school so many years ago.






A. About 1948 Burchell (Burt) met Lucia (Lu) in a high school class and they began dating in late 1949. It is said even their first kiss was shared in this 1937 panel truck. Burt and Lu were married in May 1955. They have four sons: Doug, David, Jim and Mike. They also share their father’s interest in all things automotive, but mostly Chevrolets.


B. Two months after the restoration was completed Burt and Lu made their first long vacation in the “new” panel truck. They toured some of New York State, visited friends and during the 2,800 mile trip had no problems.

C. After returning home from the New York vacation Burt and Lu sponsored a 50 plus reunion for their classmates to reminisce about their school days and talk about their riding in the old 1937 panel. Burt even made “Butter Boxes” (they sat on going to school) to place in the panel and several climbed in like the old days for photos.

Classmates standing in Front of the New Panel Truck

Sitting on “Butter Boxes” for a photo

Three Butter Box Seats inside the panel

Note: The wooden Butter Boxes came to the general store regularly with 60# of butter. (It would be repackaged in their store in smaller private label boxes for home kitchen use). These boxes made perfect seats for the 7 mile trip to school.

D. What a coincidence! Burt’s father had this personal initials BL, placed on the side of the early 1937. This restored panel is of course lettered the same as original however the BL can now also stand for Burt and Lu! What are the odds of this happening?


E. Notice the round grill guard attached to the front bumper. Burt removed this aftermarket accessory from a totaled 1936 Plymouth in the mid 1950’s. He then placed it on the everyday panel truck. He kept it stored over these many years. It now sets in the same position on his “new” 1937. He has never seen another!

The same grill guard Burt added to the older 1937 in the mid 1950’s

F. Look at Burt in 1947 sitting on the hood at 14 years old. Look at Burt in 2001 sitting on the hood of his new 1937, 53 years later.

2001                                            1947 (Check the round grill guard)

G. Note the center indentation on the rear photo. This was GM’s idea to allow the person loading to get closer to the body. Good Idea!

H. The panel truck has now been driven over 22,000 miles. Burt and Lu traveled as a team to places like Vermont, Quebec City, Maine and New York. That does not include so many car shows plus trailering to two national more distant shows sponsored by the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America in Flint, MI and Nashville, TN.

The happy couple about 2015

Below is a group photo of Burt and Lu’s vehicle collection. Left to right.
1957 Bel Air convertible, 1952 Styleline Deluxe Two Door, 1937 GMC ½ ton Pickup, 1937 Panel Truck, 1936 Maple Leaf 1 ton, and 1934 Master Cabriolet.

You can contact Burt or Lu @ burtfulmore@gmail.com.

1936 Chevrolet 1 1/2 Ton

Tuesday, November 1st, 2016

Buy Chevy & GMC Truck Parts only @ Jim Carter's Old Chevy Trucks. 1000's in stock now!

Our monthly feature truck is an 80 year old regular driver! Born in late 1936, it found a great home in mid-Missouri about 10 years ago. It was found in Western Kansas where the low humidity slows rust on metal left outside. To keep it looking much like it was found, the remaining Brewster Green paint was untouched and the surface rust from many years in the elements was also kept as is.

What is interesting is the mechanicals. They have been kept pure 1936 Chevrolet and are restored to perform as they did when they left the factory. Therefore, it cannot be given the title of a “Rat-Rod”. These usually have very up to date hidden mechanicals.

When you know the proud owner, (Mike Russell of Columbia, Missouri) you can understand why he is a real example of what the antique car and truck hobby is all about. There has never been a time since his teenage years that Mike hasn’t owned an early vehicle. In his case they were usually Chevrolets. He even brought his son, Sam, home from the hospital 37 years ago after his birth using the family’s 1935 Chevy Coupe!

This feature truck of the month project was begun because Mike had got an “itch” to have an older 1 ½ ton in about 2005. Therefore, on a Saturday in that year Mike and a friend were driving a distance to evaluate a 1940 Chevy 1 ½ ton that was advertised. During the drive they noticed a farm beside a mid-Missouri rural back road that looked like nothing had been discarded in 60 years including all their past worn out farm machinery. The surrounding grounds were loaded with rusty stuff. They got out to look just because of curiosity.

In 10 minutes looking Mike saw an interesting site in a distant field. It proved to be a 1936 Chevrolet 1 ½ ton (short 131” wheel base with 5th wheel for towing) attached to a long flatbed trailer. Both had sat in that spot for many years! One of the attached photos is just what Mike saw that day!

What became even more interesting to Mike was the attached trailer. It still had its rear gate with the large stamped letters: FRUEHAUF. He thought: It must be about as old as the truck. Could there be any others left in the world?

Mike had to have them both! No doubt the owner was very excited to sell something out of his large junk collection but of course he kept this to himself during the money negations.

So, now Mike is the new owner. The pair are soon at Mike’s business. The Show Me Powder Coating Co. in Fulton, Mo and an evaluation of this new purchase begins.

Sadly, he had to face some financial facts. The truck was too far gone to restore, unless someone was in prison and worked for .25 / hour. Otherwise Mike would have to jack up the radiator cap and place a different truck under it! Yes, at least he still had that rare Fruehauf trailer. That became the high point of the purchase.

So Mike still had his heart set on a 1 ½ ton but the hunt was narrowed to a 1936 so it will be like the one that was not restorable. The hunt begins again!

The diligent hunt ended with a find in Western Kansas where the dry air keeps rust to a minimum. The almost 500 mile one way trip would be worth the effort. This 1936 1 ½ ton had the longer 157 inch wheel base and was previously a farm truck. We will call this 1936 No. 2. It had not run for so many years but Mike knew he could fix whatever mechanical problem it needed.

The restoration of 1936 No. 2 starts. Now the money begins to go out on truck expenses such as a “total” brake rebuilding. The engine head has several burned valves. The lower end of the 207 block required most of the rod shims to be removed to create the proper clearance. The engine is cleaned painted and returned to the truck. Gauges are checked and repaired as needed. Wiring installed. New original tail lights are added. Seat cushion covers need replacements. Windshield and side window mechanisms must be repaired and lubricated, etc. etc.

Because the sheet metal was so straight for an 80 year old it was decided to create a different finished project than most would ever consider. Mike would keep it much like an above average prewar used working truck however all hidden mechanicals would be restored to new condition. He wanted no part of being broken down by the highway! Being at fault in an accident with bad brakes in what appeared to be an unrestored 1930’s truck plus his name and photo in the newspaper would not be apart of this equation.

When we asked Mike why he created a new and old combination he said “Because I wanted to!”

The original transmission and differential had not been put in operation because no running engine existed. Now the rebuilt 207 engine was almost ready and the 1936 No. 2 first drive would be soon.

Mike’s son, Sam, was drivin down from Wisconson to watch the maiden voyage on this special day that had been over a year in coming. Even though Sam had been in a bicycle accident a few years before that left him paralyzed from the chest down, he wanted to be there that day. He had excepted the fact that he would never be able to take rides in pre-war vehicles and being inside this big 1936 would be no exception.

NOT CORRECT!! Mike had other ideas on this special day! The passenger door was removed from the truck. Mike placed a piece of plywood on the forks of his company fork lift truck. Sam was raised in his wheel chair to the perfect height to slide over on the truck seat. Sam said, “I was so proud to take a real ride in the 1936 on its maiden voyage”. They made the trip around the shop in the grass and then it was driven out on the highway. All the gears in the unrestored differential and transmission worked just right!

Soon, Sam’s three young daughters each got to go for a ride, of course with no right door. It was certainly a high point for the Mike Russell family!

Mike has since become quite attached to 1936 No. 2. The weekend before the interview, he had driven it about 150 miles just for fun on the rural roads in the county. He has what he wanted: An old looking big truck that runs like the first day it left the factory.

You can contact Mike Russell by email @ ml.russell@mchsi.com


Mike wanted 1936 No.2 with its 157” wheelbase to be like the original short 131” wheelbase of 1936 No. 1. It could then be given the 5th wheel from 1936 No. 1 and all would be a perfect fit for someday pulling the restored Fruehauf trailer.

This idea worked perfectly! Mike and a friend worked in his shop on a Saturday and the frame shortening was completed in less than 5 hours. Soon the 5th wheel was restored from 1936 No. 1 and all fit in place just right.

A great surprise: The longer section of 1936 No. 2’s drive shaft was easily exchanged with the shorter from 1936 No. 1. A no brainer! What a break from spending more time and money.

A very interesting feature! On the right side frame rail behind the cab is an etching added at the factory 80 years ago. It is a warning on the dangers of cutting the frame to get a longer or shorter length. This is said to still be placed on large truck frame rails today! See Photo.

WHAT ABOUT THE ALMOST ONE OF A KIND REMAINING FRUEHAUF TRAILER? This restoration is planned for the near future now that the 5th wheel assembly has been restored and moved from 1936 No.1 to 1936 No. 2. Mike gave an interesting comment about this trailer (He says this is his personal opinion but he is sure he is correct). To help sales, the Fruehauf Trailer Co. in the early years would provide the wheels and hubs for what the customer requested. Thus, the truck owner did not have to carry a second spare tire and wheel just for their trailer. Good marketing. Very interesting.

So out of curiosity, Mike asked the farm owner, “Any story on the 1936 No. 1 and its attached Fruehauf trailer?” The answer was a surprise. It was used to transport donkeys from city to city throughout the mid-west during the 1940’s and 1950’s. These animals were the center part of interest in the then popular Donkey Baseball. Before television and air conditioning, people were often entertained outside the home for their fun. When the donkeys came to town, local clubs or churches used this to help their group in local fund raising. (The donkey owners shared the gate fees with local groups) Members of the clubs on the local baseball fields were assigned a donkey to ride. Any field movement such as chasing a hit ball or running the bases had to be done while on the back of a donkey! It was great fun entertainment in a bi-gone era.

1936 No. 1 and the Fruehauf Trailer was used to move the donkeys to towns every week and thus high miles were shown on the truck’s odometer. If the wear and tear on the truck did not kill it, the final death was setting beside a fence in a farm field probably 30 years!

In the truck and trailer’s later years the Fruehauf had its sides removed to allow it to be a hay bail trailer for some local farms. The 207 engine finally gave up and the rig was set beside the farm pasture until Mike found it in 2005.

For those interested in more data on “Donkey Baseball”, check Google on your computer. There is so much to see about this game from our nation’s history.


Shortened 1936 No. 2 attached to the Fruehauf. So much better truck than 1936 No. 1 but from a distance they look the same.

Just like Mike found 1936 No.1

The Fruehauf attached to 5th wheel during a turn.  Note the “tow ring” in the middle of the rear cross member on the 1936. Mike says all 1936 1 ½ tons had the bolt hole punched at the factory. If the customer wanted this accessory it would be easy for the dealer to install. Simply a nut and washer to hold the threaded stud.

Attached Fruehauf Trailer

It was slowly returning to the soil.

This is the trailer tailgate on moving day with everything cleared away.

Front of Fruehauf

Attached 5th wheel on 1936 No. 1

Old one-eye 1936 No. 1 ready to leave the field after Mike’s purchase

1936 No. 2 with 157” wheel base

1936 No. 2 with its 157” frame wheel base at a different angle

1936 No. 2 with door removed for Sam.

Mike taking measurements before frame shortening on 1936 No. 2

The cut is underway

26” of frame rail removed on 1936 No. 2

The differential and rear frame rail after the cut on 1936 No. 2

The 26” frame section removed

Frame shortened to be like 1936 No. 1

Another view of the shortened 1936 No. 2

Rebuilt, cleaned and painted placed in 1936 No. 2

Right Side View

Left Side View

Even has the accessory oil filter

1936 Missouri license below the correct truck taillight

Part of the new exhaust system

Sam and his daughters on the day of the Maiden Voyage. Mike on the fork lift.

Close to getting into the cab

Sam’s big smile sitting by Mike. The first ride begins!

The young ladies ready to ride!

1936 No. 2 first drive around the building

Restoring the 5th wheel from 1936 No. 1

What a job!

Installing new cloth hood lace.

1938 GMC Cab Over, Roll-Back

Thursday, March 31st, 2016


Wow! Here’s what you can do with a 2 ton 80 year old truck that has become almost beyond repair! Glenn Garrison of Germanton, North Carolina decided to build a roll back truck that was one of a kind. He wanted something no one else would have and yet could do car hauling duties as well as others.

When he saw this (almost only 1938 GMC Cab-Over-Engine 1 ½ ton survivor) he got very interested. It was so far from his home but he had never seen one before!

This rare 1938 GMC Cab-Over-Engine (COE) was in Kimball Nebraska (over 1,800 miles from his shop). It was once a city work truck and still had their ID plate attached to the door post. He had to have it! After having it transported the long distance to his shop, in Germanton, NC. he began to make serious plans to make a major transition. The badly used bed and mechanicals would be discarded and much money would be spent to bring the sheet metal and interior to new condition. Even the original GMC color, Narva Green (1938-52) was used on the exterior.

During the restoration Glenn found a downer truck to receive the now immaculate cab and front sheet metal. The choice was a 1998 GMC 6500 two ton.  The restoration continued now on the newer vehicle with cleaning and replacing parts plus finding a roll back chassis bed.  It also was restored and finished with shiny black paint.

What a project! Fortunately, Glenn has excellent abilities in repairing vehicles as was certainly needed during this project. Just getting the 1938 cab to align with the 1998 chassis was a real project!

As a part time restoration project (work duties had to continue) it took Glenn 5 years to complete this project.

It is now well recognized in Germantown. For those not acquainted with the mechanical side of trucks, now assume Glenn has come to tow their car with a 75 years old truck! You can contact Glenn by email at skgarrison@windstream.net.

When first received. Looks like someone found some “get-by” headlights!

1998 GMC T6500, 3116 Cat Engine 250hp, 6 Speed Manuel Transmission, Air Brakes

Under Construction!

Look Inside!

The Finished Product.

Still Beautiful, over 10 years later,

1936 Chevrolet Low Cab 1/2 Ton

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015


We just had to make an exception! Normally our monthly feature is to help show our readers what the new truck was when they first left the dealers showroom. However, this unrestored 1936 Chevrolet low cab ½ ton changed our direction. In our 35 years in business we have never seen an 80 year old work truck so unaltered. Yes, used, but almost all parts have remained without later changes.

What a reference vehicle for the restorer! There is almost no trucks of this age that can be used as a restoration example and the owner be so sure everything is right!


It arrived at our shop one morning on a trailer from its prior life’s location near Monument, Colorado. The new proud owners, Bryan and Beth Frogue were taking it to their home in Elkton, Kentucky. They found it on eBay and were very surprised that so many high bids came before they owned it. Others recognized the purity of this old truck. It would require almost no body work and what came with it was correct as installed by General Motors eighty years ago.

Bryan and Beth and their children Van, Madison and Emily are great examples of the old saying, “If you want to get something done, give it to a busy person”. They are avid antique vehicle collectors and enjoy originality so they quickly recognized the unique qualities of this little 1936. Their vehicle collection they have and still display, are at least 5 very early John Deere tractors plus a 1940 Chevrolet ¾ ton pickup and a 1950 Chevrolet 1 ton pickup with a 9’ ft. bed.

Pictured ’46 John Deere H, ’46 JD LI, ’41 JD LA, ’53 John Deere G, ’37 Unstyled John Deere B (Not Pictured)

They own 70 acres that support a stocker feeder cattle operation which they run approx. 150 cattle thru on a yearly basis and raise 40 ac of alfalfa and grass hay. Bryan has a regular day job as a crop consultant and Beth is a Kentucky Tech Area Technology Center school principal. She even drives the 1950 pickup to school!

Their plans for the 1936 is to give it a ground up restoration as time and money permits. At least now they own it and there will be no doubt on what is correct.

During the time Bryan and Beth were at our shop, we took various photos to emphasis the untouched qualities of their 1936. For the perfectionist, these relate to items that will be very important during a full restoration. Check the text under each picture.

You can contact Bryan & Beth at bryan.frogue@att.net

Still shows its Expert Blue. No repaints

Splash apron under grill. Dent free?

Rubber gas grommet still behind right rear fender

Black windshield frame. Saves time on assembly line with just one color.

Left rear fender with some black remaining.

Yes, hole for wiper motor. Drivers side only.

Unbelievable! The 80 year old headliner still in original position.

Spare tire pins to better secure tire in fender well.

Spare tire removed for the long journey home.

Tailgate (dent free?) with its Export Blue paint

Original Taillight bracket (left side only) with 44 year old license.

Slight bend has occurred in taillight bracket
NOTE: Correct metal loom held with clip to non-original taillight.

Wood floor has protective canvas on edges. (See lower left corner for loose piece)

207 engine and 4 speed in pickup bed. Prior owner went no further.

80 year old paint still shines in places.

Only one dash knob has been changed.

Yes, the seat was once recovered.

Hood – All is just right.

Correct 17’ wire wheels wait in towing pickup.

Door rubber bumpers in place.

Crank hole cover still attached. “Amazing”

1935 Doodlebug

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2015


Mr. & Mrs. Steve Mosley & Family Is it a truck, a car or a tractor?

Neither. It’s an American Doodlebug! Once found in farming areas all over the USA, they are now a rarity. The few remaining are now owned by serious automotive history buffs that want something much different and are interested in this segment of our country’s history.

We’ve all heard the old saying: “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”. The need for a farm tractor during the Great Depression of the 1930’s, with little extra money, brought out the talents of entrepreneurs to the surface. It was the beginning of what is called the American Doodlebug. A farmer or local repair shop discovered they could build one! All makes and models of used cars and trucks were considered as possible farm tractor material. Three major changes had to occur: The tired bodies were discarded, frames shortened to allow for short turns in a field and if available, larger wheels and tires were placed in the rear for gripping into the soil. Usually the hood was left as is as to protect the engine from rain.

Often a heavier transmission was added and when available a large truck differential gave more tractor strength.

Thus, at the fraction of the cost of a new tractor, the farmer had a Doodlebug. It was very adequate for a small acreage that could support a family in the earlier years. Thousands were created and none were the same.

Just as the Great Depression was winding down and a little disposable income began to surface, the worst thing happened. The US became involved in World War II. Tractor factories were forced to stop production and build products for the military overseas. Once again no new tractors!

The creation of more and more Doodlebugs during WWII saved many farmers and added to our badly needed local food supplies. All citizens that remained stateside, required a dependable supply of crops. The Doodlebugs emerged to “save the day” for much agriculture production.

This month’s feature truck is a real Doodlebug built many years ago on what appears to be a 1935 Chevy ½ ton chassis. The owner is Steve Mosley of Independence, Missouri. It is an excellent example of what was done with limited funds combined with a need for a small farm tractor. Steve has kept it just the way he found it after it had been sitting in a back field in Southwest Missouri. He only added a lawn chair seat and side gas tank. What an eye catcher at any car & truck show, even though few have any idea what it is?

As all Doodlebugs are custom created, here are some specifications of Steve’s “one of a kind”.

  1. The original 207 inline 6 cylinder engine block cracked about 1970. A full pressure Chevy 235 six cylinder engine was a drop-in replacement.
  2. A two speed differential is from about a 1940 1 ½ ton. The mechanical lever, not vacuum shift, changes the rear end ratio from high to low speed when you are on a real pull.
  3. The transmission arrangement is the real eye catcher!! A 4 speed secured against the bell housing is the more common unit used on Chevy & GMC trucks from 1948 to about 1964. The real surprise is a second 4 speed (it appears from the original 1935) that is secured backward to the front 4 speed. This raises the Doodlebug’s speed up to passenger car miles/hours if anyone would consider driving it that fast. By Steve’s calculations this gives it 34 forward gears. The lowest (for moving beside slow snails) is over 372 to 1 ratio. Remember: All is home-made with parts that could be found locally (probably less than 6 of these forward gears were ever used).
  4. The next is really impressive! Dual rears (Steve only adds them during raining and snow months) is a real example of creating custom overloads on its duel tires. The two outside tires are slightly smaller than the inners and are wrapped with chains. Therefore, it runs on a smooth field on the large inner tires. If they sink into soft soil or mud the outside tires, with chains, help in the pull. What an idea!!
  5. The rear axles are secured directly to the light-weight original 1935 frame. This prevents the narrow 1 3/4” wide leaf springs from bending and breaking on a heavy pull.
  6. As the frame is shortened, the driver shaft must be cut to length.


Of course, hungry entrepreneurs quickly jumped on the opportunity to make it easier for people to own a Doodlebug. Kits became available in farm stores as well as in mail-order catalogs such as Montgomery Ward and Sears and Robuck. For those not quite as creative, it was a good way to create your own Doodlebug. Most conversion parts were included so it was not necessary to hire the town mechanic to help. The more common kits were for a Chevrolet or Ford vehicle because so many of these makes were in existence. Other less popular vehicles had no Doodlebug kits and the owner was totally on his own to build his own little tractor.


In looking for a Doodlebug Club to join, Steve found none in the Midwest only a few in New England. So he started his own club with free membership. In 2 years, he has 78 members! He calls it: The Winch Truck / Doodlebug Strip down Association of America. (Try to get all this on a club flag)


Steve’s whole family gets into the fun of owning a Doodlebug. People at car and truck shows stop all conversation as Steve creeps by on his little tractor. Some attached photos show a local Boy Scout troop selling 50cents soda pop as they ease by rows of vehicles on display. A donation! Most usually donate at least $1.00 to the Boy Scouts for their summer camp.

To Steve’s surprise there were many, many Doodlebugs in Europe. After the disasters of WWII the people had no money to buy tractors. If they wanted to go back to farming, they had to build their own. Even used little vehicles like Opel’s and related English cars were made into Doodlebugs.

You can contact Steve Mosley at mongo@mongosgarage.com.

Bringing it Home

Soon after its on its own feet. (The hood is laying in the back)

The Front Vocal Point

Beauty and the Beast

The “SODA POP” Salesmen

Steve in the Lawn Chair Seat

50₵ “Soda Pop” at a Car Show

Hydraulic Brakes only on the Front

Connecting Two 4 Speed Transmissions

1934-36 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton Panel Truck

Tuesday, March 31st, 2015

Where did they all go? Sold in high volume to small businesses for local neighborhood deliveries, these little panel trucks served their purpose well. Merchandise stayed out of the weather and theft exposure was greatly reduced. It has been over 75 years since the last of the series came off the assembly line but here are 10 important factors are why they are now almost non-existent!

  1. Created during our country’s Great Depression. There was limited money to do repairs or preventive maintenance. Owners just did what was needed to keep them on the road.
  2. Bought as a delivery vehicle. Most did not even have the optional right front seat.
  3. Few small businesses had a garage. Most of these panel trucks were stored outside.
  4. Most were thought of as commercial only. They were seen in the neighborhoods making home deliveries by groceries, laundries, plumbing repairs, painters, etc.
  5. Hot in the summer. Door windows in the rear don’t open to help air flow.
  6. Body construction is sheet metal over a wood frame. This is a recipe for disaster over the long term. Deteriorating wood supports, particularly near the floor began to decay from leaks. Even leaking merchandise add to the demise.
  7. As with most early passenger vehicles the top had a non-metal covering over wood frame in their center. It was not if rain water would leak inside, it was just when.
  8. By 1941 our country was in World War II. Factories were converted to make defense products, not these neighborhood panel trucks. The 1934-36 panel trucks just kept working. Wood repairs and top patches gave them just a little more life.
  9. When the original owner put it up for sale or trade for a new vehicle, there were few takers. Not many second owners were looking for a one passenger well-worn panel truck.
  10. When they finally did reach the salvage yard, their weather protection advantage saved some a few extra years. Their bodies became storage. They were set aside to keep more vehicle parts such as mechanicals, gauges, tires, upholstery in a scrap yard! Can you imagine the amount of house roofing tar was used to keep the tops from leaking?

The whole scenario is a recipe for extinction! Most of today’s auto and truck enthusiasts will never see a 1934-36 panel truck in any shape. As an enthusiast once said, “They all went to see God”. We have accumulated these photos over our 35 years. Thought you might be interested in seeing the panel truck that could not survive!

NOTE: The full color photo shows a yellow late 1936 panel truck. When you look carefully you will see the same body as the 1934-early 36.

To save money, General Motors kept the same body on this later 1936 version. Yes, the dash, hood, front fenders and grill are the later design but it all interchanges. It wasn’t until 1937 when the body became all metal including the elimination of the large vinyl patch covering on the top. Our main photo shows a corner of this factory patch.

Owned by Curtis Cole, a retired school teacher, in Anaheim, CA in the year 2000

Oops! Perfect Panel Truck except the spare goes in right front on Chevrolet (Left on GMC)

Lots of Carrying Capacity

Passenger seat was an option

207 engine restored just right

From a 1934 Chevrolet Sales Brochure. The drawing appears to have stretched the body to make it show better.


The following show a 1935 Chevrolet panel truck saved from extinction. It was abandoned in a dry California desert and thus it survived! Owned by: Sean Yellowhorse, Rancho Palus Verdes, California in 2012.

Look at all the wood.

Doors sagging but all there.

1935 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton

Thursday, May 1st, 2014


This month we feature one of the nicest 1935 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickups in the country. At 69 years old, the owner attends his first 12 car shows.
All are in upstate New York during 2013.

His 1935 received no less than first place in every one in the commercial class. In five of these events he also was awarded “Best of Show” Those attending
stand and admire. Quality parts, good workmanship, its rarity, and the owner that is always there for questions at shows is important. Here is how a ½ ton
pickup receive this much attention.

The Westtown NY newspaper sponsors a classic car and truck display each month in their city which awards a trophy for the “Best of Show”. At the end of 12 months of shows the public then picks the best of all the prior 12 winners. Yes, you are correct. Richard’s little 1935 was voted the 2013 “Ride of the Year”! They don’t get much better than this.

This is its story

Its 1965 in upstate Westtown, New York. A young Richard Wright notices a 1935 Chevy ½ ton in a local salvage yard. He can see it every day as he passes the yard. One afternoon he finally stops and asked about it. What a surprise! He can own it for $100.00 and then tow it home. The next day it sits in his back yard!

At 21 years old, you usually don’t consider restoration. It soon received a V-8 engine and related mechanicals to make it go fast and sound like it could even go faster.
And then comes life changes. Marriage, children and a home with all the usual expenses on a limited income. The little truck was put aside for the other higher priorities. When Richard received an offer to sell it and make a good profit, he knew he had to let it go.

In looking back, Richard remembers being unhappy for 44 years whenever he thought of selling that little truck. He had not seen another since.
Now enters Richard’s brother in about 2009 when he noticed an unrestored 1935 advertised in the next county. He demands they go together to see it. Though very badly worn most all parts were there. It was said to have been used in a New York apple orchard during its earlier years.

Richard decided it would be a great retirement project for himself (he was 65 years old) and his brother. He just had to own it! It would be much like reliving their early years when he had his first 1935. Only this time, it would be mostly just like GM made it.

Sadly, soon after the restoration started, his brother developed an incurable disease and then the rebuilding begin feverously. Richard worked continually with some help from the brother so at least the truck could look near new and it would be drivable for both. Only a surface restoration was done but it looked good if you did not get too close.

Sometime after his brother passed away, Richard decided it was time to restore the pickup even better. Now it went down to the bare frame. Each part was restored or replaced. Four years were required to make it what it is today.

He went out of his way to find original GM parts when possible so it could be very close to a new 1935. Every nut and bolt was removed, cleaned, painted or replaced. Being a retired Chevrolet mechanic gave him experience to help carry the project to completion.
Even the cab was disassembled completely. The top unbolts from the cab sides. All the mechanicals were rebuilt to make it like new, no exceptions. It still has the correct 207 six cylinder and 3 speed transmission. Richard wanted no problems once the pickup was completed.

One special extra that always separates the “men from the boys” in a show is the addition of a correct cotton covered braided wiring harness. This looks so special in a 1935 vehicle in comparison to modern day PVC coated wiring!

About 3 years into this major 4 year restoration another bad thing occurred in Richard’s life. It was necessary that he have open heart surgery! This really slowed his progress on the little 1935 ½ ton. “I could not do things like I used to”.

To help with the final 20% of the restoration his good friend Glenn Adams owner of Star Collision and Body Shop came to Richard’s rescue. He took care of sheet metal straightening and painting in their special paint booth. Richard helped with the body assembly while in the later stages of his heart surgery healing. It was Glenn that made the final stages of the restoration possible!

Important! When you rebuild a pickup cab (or a car) with a wood body frame, a new set of rules are introduced. The ash wood must be cut to “exact” specifications. No errors allowed! Following photos show the cab wood frame prior to the sheet metal being attached.

Once the cab wood frame is assembled the metal panels are temporarily attached. If the panels do not fit perfectly, they are removed and wood carving is required. It is back and forth until all metal is aligned perfectly. Only then is the exterior sheet metal painting done (off the truck). Of course, the metal panels have to be straightened exactly right at the very beginning.

For example: Richard explains there was many hours getting the wood to fit perfectly inside just one metal door skin so that the latching would operate correctly! It is difficult to imagine that in 1935 a new pickup came off the assemble-line every 10 or 15 minutes!
Only two major changes exist in the restoration: the brakes and the dash.

The brakes are 1936, one year newer. Thus, the pickup has hydraulic brakes and not the cable system as in 1935. Richard explains “I have so much time and money in this restoration, it needed an improved brake system to help avoid an accident”.

The burl walnut coating on the dash gives the interior a more deluxe appearance.
The following photos are divided into before, during and after the major restoration.

The Beginning!

                    Richard Wright’s first 1935, bought about 1965

At Home


The Fun Begins


The Second Beginning

                               The 2009 New Purchase


Trailered Home

Incomplete Engine

A Tired 1/2 Ton

Most is There

                         1936 Axles Give Hydraulic Brakes




                           Down to the Frame


Almost Apart

On Edge

                       Mechanicals Await Installation


Engine Ready

3 Speed Completed


All Together

                            Sheet Metal Ready



Waiting Assembly

                       Sizing Metal Before Paint


Panels Tested

Wood & Door Mating

Bed Check for Fit

Fenders Ready

More Sizing

                                  Assembly Begins

The Floor Frame
Cab Frame
Roof in Place
Window Panel

Getting Close


                                  Assembly After Paint


Corners & Back

Almost There

Looking Good

Fenders in Place


The Focal Point
Richard’s New Wheel

The Finished Product!
Hood Down
Hood Up
Right Side
Engine in Place
Back View
New Headliner

You can contact Richard Wright at char63@optimum.net.
For even more data on why the 1935 Chevy ½ ton is so rare, click on the web site of Jim Carters Truck Parts. http://www.oldchevytrucks.com, then technical articles, next 1934-46 catalog, and finally cabs. This will lead you to: The Demise of 1935 High Cab Pickups. You will get an even more update on why these pickups are so unusual in today’s world.





1936 GMC

Wednesday, August 28th, 2013

Owner:  Pat Kroeger

The United States was experiencing the bad economic years of the 1930’s Great Depression. GMC, the leader of big truck sales, is feeling a market drop with no end in sight. Many of their dealers have either gone out of business or are trying to survive on customer mechanical repairs and selling other products.

The GMC Truck Division must do something soon to save their dealers and themselves. A solution was to enter into the small truck business in 1936. No doubt the GMC engineers had been under much pressure to create a light truck that would save this truck division of General Motors. The result: a very attractive truck that they hoped would be a step above the competition.

This finished product had more engine power for a light pickup, attractive trim and eye catching colors. The ½ was referred to as the T-14. It came only in a long 126” wheel base. The short bed GMC ½ ton 112” wheel base was not introduced until 1937.

GMC was so proud of their new little ½ ton, they even added an emblem with four fasteners on the lower right side cowl panel.

This month’s featured truck is one of these first pickups, a 1936 GMC T-14. Very few have survived. The proud owner and restorer is Pat Kroeger of Palm Harbor, Florida. His GMC has attracted so much attention it has been chosen as the Hallmark All-American Truck Keepsake Series Christmas tree ornament for 2013.

Here is Pat Kroeger’s personal story on his 1936 GMC T-14:

When I retired from the Fire Dept. in 2003, I started to look for another truck to have fun with. I had previously restored a 1922 American LaFrance Fire Engine for the Department that I worked for, but wanted something smaller.

I was looking for a late 40’s to early 50’s Chevrolet truck since a friend of mine had a 1953 Ford F-100 and I wanted to a bit competitive with him. While searching the
Internet I found my current truck, a 1936 GMC T-14 in Queens Creek AZ. My father in law lived part time close by in Phoenix AZ so he went and looked at it for me.
After his inspection, I decided to buy the truck and had it shipped back to Fla. I found out from the buyer that he was the second owner of the truck and that the original owner had bought it new in June of 1936 for $695 and it had been registered in Pinal County since new. The original owner restored the truck in 1989 and the second owner had done a few repairs.

The paint and body work was very good when I got the truck, but mechanically it was in poor condition. Every seal and gasket leaked, the brakes were shot, the head had a crack, the tires were dry rotted and the wood in the bed was dried beyond recognition.

In the last 10 years that I have owned it I have taken care of the above items plus have rebuilt all of the gauges, replaced the tail gate, rechromed the radiator ornament, repainted the wheels, rebuilt the carburetor, rebuilt the fuel pump, replaced the rear glass and surround, added the passenger side mirror, rewired the tank sending unit, replaced the 8 volt battery with a 6 volt Optima battery with new battery cables, replaced the bed wood and strips, replaced the clutch and rebuilt the pressure plate and reupholstered the seat. I have plans to disassemble the bed, fenders and grill and refresh the paint, since 20 years of nicks, bumps and scraps need to be taken care of and install four single action shocks.

Most of the mechanical items I have taken care of myself, but have farmed out the paint and chrome work.

I had no idea of the significance of this truck until I got it and started to research more about it. GMC offered this truck in two versions, Standard and Deluxe with the Deluxe version having chrome headlights and stands, chrome center grill gars, radiator ornament, polished stainless hood louvers and chrome hood handles. In addition to that, GMC also offered a Deluxe Cab option that included a chrome inside rearview mirror, arm rest on driver side, chrome windshield frame, sun glare shield, dome light and chrome wiper arm. The chrome front bumper was an added cost accessory, also. The standard color was Green Murant with black fenders, but eleven other colors were offered either as a single color or two tone.

From what the original owner told me, mine is the original color combination.

I also found out after getting this truck, that 1936 was a very bad year for GM due to a labor strike that lasted for months. Production of this model GMC was limited to 11,250 of which mine is the 3229 in the production run. 1936 was also, for the most part, a single year design for GMC. Few items came from 1935 and few items transferred to 1937.
I attempted to do a decent job of restoring this truck and although not a daily driver, I do put around 100 miles a month driving around to cruise ins and on weekends. I have thoroughly enjoyed working on this truck and like the fact that it is somewhat of a unique truck.

Patrick Kroeger, Palm Harbor, FL

Radiator Cap – a work of art

Hallmark 2013 Christmas ornament

A farmer could haul one horse!


1939 Chevy Half Ton

Wednesday, May 29th, 2013

Owner: Steve Jones

If you ever consider restoring a Pre-WWII GM truck, this data should quickly get you in the mood. Just look at what was done to a tired 1939 Chevy 1/2 ton that was bought from a newspaper advertisement. Its many pieces were brought home after years of abuse. It was no longer a usable vehicle.

Even more incredible is that it all happened in the country of New Zealand where most restoration parts must be imported. The owner and rebuilder is Steve Jones on the North Island of New Zealand. In past years he had owned a 1939 Chevy coupe but having an old Chevrolet pickup had been a developing dream and this very rare 1939 was just what he had in mind. Thanks to the internet and his computer, Steve realized the potential of this little pickup. The goal would be to make it very close to what you could buy from a New Zealand Chevrolet dealer in 1939.

Yes, of course it was a frame off project. Several years work and many orders from the US allowed it to finally come together. The only noticeable differences from its 1939 beginning are the addition of a non-New Zealand GM bed with sides and its whitewalls. Steve even painted it an optional US factory color, Armour Yellow.

The photos will give some readers another surprise. New Zealand, like many other countries in the world, is a right hand drive nation! The dash is totally reversed. The starter and accelerator pedal linkage has been re-engineered to reach their different place in the cab. The taillight is moved to the right side. A connection on the steering connection to the front suspension requires a very unique “third arm” beside the right king pin assembly.

Steve is a total GM truck enthusiast, so he has since completed the same treatment on a 1949 Chevy ½ ton and it is used as a more daily driver. His “biggest of all” project is his current challenge. This is rebuilding a 1957 GMC cab over engine (COE) Model 370 truck. This will be a frame off project that will surely require 2 or 3 years to complete. We can only imagine the cost and personal work this will require. We assume this will be the “only” example of this unusual truck in the country of New Zealand.

His enthusiasm continues! Steve is now forming the “All American Truck Club”. It will be open to all New Zealand truck enthusiasts and at least for now no membership charge. He would love to get the many New Zealand truck owners together and help improve knowledge, have truck gatherings and drives, plus help develop a better parts exchange.

You can contact Steve Jones at: chevytrucks49@e3.net.nz.

More data on Pre-WWII GM New Zealand trucks:

General Motors right hand drive trucks, though unusual in the United States, have always been very popular in specific countries such as Britain, New Zealand, South Africa, and Australia. These vehicles were not produced in the U.S. but came from GM’s large assembly plant in Oshawa, Ontario. Due to reversed dash boards, the change in steering components, differences in starter linkages, and tail light locations, etc., the lower numbers of right hand drive production was kept at this one Canadian assembly plant.

In New Zealand, special marketing laws required at least 25% of each new truck had to be assembled or produced in that country. This was mostly to help provide more local jobs. Thus for many years the GM Canadian facility exported truck parts only to the New Zealand assembly plant in Petone near the capital city of Wellington. Hundreds of freight containers supplying GM truck parts regularly arrived at this New Zealand assembly plant. The specialized parts from Canada were engines, frames, suspension components, disassembled cabs and front sheet metal. The New Zealand plant then assembled the truck and furnished parts they could provide locally. This included (at least in the 1940′s) the wiring harnesses, window glass, a wood cab floor, rubber parts, gas tank, an optional flat wood deck, etc.

To keep within the 25% government parts and labor requirement, a truck bed with sides as supplied on U.S. vehicles was not included. A locally made wood deck could be added during assembly. Either with or without this deck, the two rear pickup metal rear fenders from the Canadian plant were wired or otherwise secured at the rear of the cab. The finished vehicle was delivered this way to local New Zealand GM dealers. The lack of a bed would also allow the budget minded buyer to construct his own deck or hauling platform and better afford the new truck.

A New Zealand trailer manufacturer during these early years used these pickup rear fenders on their finished product. Their small general purpose trailers were usually equipped with these new metal pickup fenders. A retired 88 year old manager of this company remembers having standing orders with all New Zealand pickup dealers (not just GM) to purchase their extras. This saved additional expense on their completed trailers.

Their right hand drive feature is unique to American readers; however, these Chevrolets have another very unusual characteristic. As with most 1939 New Zealand Chevrolet trucks, their cab was assembled in the Petone, New Zealand plant from pre-stamped pieces from the Canadian location, and are a mixture of two types of trucks. The rear of the cabs and door outer sheet metal are of the U.S. 1936-1938 design. The cowl, windshield frame, hood and grill are the 1939-40 style. Yes, they do weld together nicely into a single unit but the outside horizontal door and hood trim lines do not match. Reasons for the GM ‘cab mixture’ are not known at this writing, however, it is assumed keeping New Zealand’s costs low was the main factor. Quantities of older 1936-38 style rear cabs, roofs, and door stampings were either already available or the prior tooling still had much remaining life. The lower cost could then be passed on to the retail truck buyer. Just another way of producing the New Zealand 1939 GM truck at the lowest possible price!

Another theory for this unusual combination cab is due to the beginning of World War II. Because of New Zealand’s connection with Great Britain, they entered the war September 2, 1939 over two years before the United States became formally involved. No doubt being in the war created an immediate demand for all trucks in New Zealand. Rather than lose sales while the cab tooling changeover occurred at the Canadian supply plant (1938 to the new design 1939 body) GM continued with the prior sheet metal for their in demand export truck. Exact new styling was not necessary to overseas buyers when the war demand was so high!

One of Steve’s pictures, with this article, features the inside of the cab top without the headliner. Note: the factory welds where the early and late style sheet metal have been joined.

Factory cab welds show 2 cab designs joined.

Non-US inside door panels

1939 Chevrolet 1 1/2 Ton Pickup

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Year/Make 1939 Chevrolet
Owner: John H. Sheally II

1939 Chevrolet Tow truck

What do you tow your Morgan with ?

Year/Make 1939 Chevrolet
Owner: John H. Sheally II

What do you tow your Morgan with ?

Story and Photographs by John H. Sheally II

There is something special about driving a 74-year-old truck, built with purpose and pride four years before I was born.

My 1939 Chevrolet, grain bed, ton and a half tow truck is what I call a ‘REAL TRUCK’. This baby was built to work and be tough. Quality was important to vehicle builders of the pre-war era – trucks of that period were built to be strong and simple. There are no plastic parts or paper fender wells held in place with paper clips in this machine. Plenty of nickel was used in the steel bodies thus they did not rust out. As a result trucks like mine can be rebuilt, restored or refurbished very easily. Mine was a one owner (same family its whole pre life) from an estate sale in Charlottesville, Virginia. It was an ugly faded green (original color) and had been worked hard all its years on that farm, It was an 80% restoration for me, starting with bodywork, paint, new interior, engine work as well as brakes on all four corners and enclosed drive-shaft joints.

My ‘Heavy Chevy’ has been on the road since that restoration three decades ago , I have do some 10,000 miles plus  a year with it,  towing my competition cars to  competition events annually as well as meets and concours. I have competed with several different Morgan models over these years as well as a Cobra, Saab Sonnet and two formula cars – all towed with this dependable machine for the last 68,883 miles.

I often enter the truck in shows and it wins along with the Morgan being shown for a double header at the show or concours.

The truck is perfect for the job it does. Most of these big Chevy trucks were built as stake body or flat bed models but mine was one of the rare grain bed models, big pickup bed trucks with the beds built to haul grain without spillage. As a result I can carry my tools, spares, tires, air bottles, jacks, generator, etc. The addition of a Tonneau makes it all come together for a nice competition tow package.

The engine was a ‘stove bolt’ straight 216 cubic inch six cylinder referred to as a Thriftmaster Six. When I rebuilt it two years ago I realized that I’d like to have a few more ponies coming out of it  because when I hit the mountains with it I had  to really  work the four speed gearbox to pull up the steeper slopes. So I rebuilt it to a 261 stroker which amounted to a larger bore and. longer rods, I drilled a couple of extra weep holes in the head for more cooling. The final package ended up as a Jobmaster Six with 24 more horses on the bottom end resulting in great torque and I can forget the gearbox when I hit the mountain ranges.

The Chevy is sprung stiff and required no special springs or helper shocks as it was built to handle heavy loads when built by the General Motors factory. I put Carbon-Kevlar brake shoes on four corners and it stops when I ask it too very well.

I cruise at 55 mph all day long and can hit 75 on a downhill run. It’s a great truck with great working ability and a smooth ride “when loaded”.

This black beauty is also a movie star, making her film debut in the Steven King feature ‘Hearts in Atlantis’, which is produced by Dreamworks.

You can email John at:  Morgandude@Verizon.net

1939 Chevrolet Tow truck 1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck 1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck 1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck 1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck 1939 Chevrolet Tow truck
1939 Chevrolet Tow truck

1934 Chevrolet Canopy Express

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

Owner: Kevin Koch

There may be no other survivors!  If this is the only 1934 Chevrolet Canopy Express remaining, we are all fortunate to see it in this pristine condition.  It is owned by Kevin Koch of Morgantown, PA.  His Grandfather, Jack Crane of Willow Grove, PA bought this little 1934 in 1974 with the hope of someday giving it a major restoration.   As money and replacement parts were very limited, the project remained a dream.  Later, un-restored, it was passed down to his son, George.  Kevin later found several drawings and notes his Grandfather had made many years ago showing how he had hoped to restore it and what it could look like.  He researched the major vehicle restorers at the time and picked Al Pruitt in Glen Rock, PA to do a total rebuild.  Six years later, it was a new truck and just like the drawings.

As a tribute to his grandfather, it now appears as it left the Chevrolet dealership over 78 years ago!  It is on display in the lobby of Kevin’s company, H and K Equipment Company of Coraopolis, PA.  A new larger building was recently constructed around the showroom that is for displaying his grandfather’s one of a kind 1934 Canopy Express.


Why a Canopy Express?

In the days of the one car family (or no car in the family) the Canopy Express was an extension of the retail stores. Products for sale could be brought to the neighborhoods. The lady of the house could even call the store requesting a delivery. The roll-up canvas sides of the Canopy Express were a natural for displaying groceries and related home merchandise in housing developments while protecting it from bad weather. They were equipped with a 4 speed transmission that gave them a very slow speed in first gear while moving through neighborhoods.

In the beginning of the 20th Century more people were moving from multi-story apartment living into stand alone new homes. This was the beginning of urban spread and stores were no longer just a short walk away.

It was difficult for a housewife with a few small children to walk to a distant grocery store, especially in bad weather. The Canopy Express was just what the store owner needed to reach his customers. Often a bell was attached to the cab near the driver’s door. This told the housewife that the Canopy Express was coming. The grocery shopping for the family’s evening meal could be done beside the city street.

Neighborhood deliveries were very important to the many stores that served new neighborhoods with individual homes. A Canopy Express was the vehicle of choice among grocers for over 30 years. The end of this type delivering began in the mid 1950’s. With more disposable income in the USA, a second family car became available. Larger supermarkets in shopping areas now successfully encouraged people to shop away from home.

The First 1935 Suburban

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Owner: Ed Brouillet

It’s 1935! With the encouragement of the US Army, the first Chevrolet Suburban is introduced. The Army wanted an enclosed vehicle to carry officers with a driver at their military bases. Of course, it would be a boost to Chevrolet for people to see they were doing so well during the Great Depression that they could even introduce another body style! Now looking back over 75 years ago there must have been some guarantees by the Army to encourage General Motors to create a new body design in the middle of bad economic times. Sales were down drastically in all brands of automobiles and trucks. Over half of the makes would be gone forever before the end of this disastrous economic downturn.

Trying to boost slow sales and save their dealers, the Chevrolet Division introduces the “standard” car in 1935. It was less expensive than the “master” car which was the full size body. The “standard” was slightly smaller, less appointed, and some mechanical features were less complicated than their full size car.

Sales of the GMC line (big trucks) had dropped so much that many of their dealers were out of business. General Motors attempted to counter this by introducing their first ½ and ¾ ton pickups. They even created the “Trail-a-bout”, a small utility trailer for pulling behind passenger cars using their pre-existing pickup box.

With all this gloom and doom for the auto industry, what a surprise when Chevrolet introduces their new 1935 Suburban.

When you look close you realize this new body is set on the pre-existing ½ ton chassis, a major cost cutting feature. The chassis, doors, front sheet metal, wheels, radiator, bumpers, and cowl are all from the ½ ton. The Suburban was new in body only. This lesser investment probably helped seal the agreement between the US Army request and General Motors.

Our feature truck of the month is owned by Ed Brouillet of Fairfield, Connecticut. Ed states his first year Suburban is one of only 5 remaining of that year. The body’s wood framework covered in sheet metal did not survive well when year’s later water began leaking from the canvas top and began to reach the interior. As the Suburban aged, few owners had the money or interest to make any major repairs. With the large scrap metal drives during WWII, most were donated for their metal value.

Ed proudly mentions his Suburban is not only from the first year but it is the “first” one from the Chevrolet factory! This may be the reason why it was painted Swifts Red in a conservative era. Most vehicles were blue, green, and black. It was driven by a General Motors executive and kept it at its very best during the time it was assigned to him. Being seen driving such a unique shaped body was great advertising.

It is considered the “first” Suburban for two reasons:

There is no rear lift gate and no evidence of a place for hinges or the latch. There is only a roll-up canvas curtain. The other 5 remaining 1935 Suburban’s have these stampings for a metal lift gate.

There are no body tags on the firewall or stamped serial numbers on the engine block. No grinding or filling the holes or stamped numbers can be seen.

We assume the new Suburban was introduced toward the end of the 1935 as only 75 were made that year. Many more were produced in 1936.

Ed bought it over 20 years ago from the second owner, Walter Deck of Illinois, who was also a well known professional auto restorer. This person realized the rarity of owning the first Suburban and completed this ground up restoration just right. Because of being the first, all was done just like it left the factory.

The vehicle has not been in local shows for about 4 years. Because 2012 is Chevrolets 100th Anniversary, it is temporarily on display in the Antique Automobile Club of America Museum in Hershey, PA. For a close up view of the Suburban, visit this museum while in town at the famous Hershey Swapmeet in October 2012.

Note: Ed has hinted he is considering selling this “number one” Suburban. It has been appraised at $150,000.00! Bids are being considered starting at $125,000.00. See it at the museum or contact us for a contact.

1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express

Thursday, May 31st, 2012

1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express
While recently sorting through some stored papers we found some older photos of our
un-restored 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express we once owned. What a surprise! We thought these pictures were lost.

Our company, Jim Carter Truck Parts, had bought this very rare vehicle from Walt Kutchler of Anaheim, CA during the early 1990’s. Walt was an avid collector of 1937 Suburban’s and other rare 1930’s Chevrolets.

Our idea was to restore it to new condition. It would then be placed in our company show room for customers to see. We were a relatively new company and restoration funds were limited. We discovered it would probably be years before we could afford to complete this restoration and gather some of the rare missing parts. So when a person in Northern California began to push us into selling it, we finally yielded to the pressure.

After all, he was to keep it looking like a 1937 and also used it in his business for advertising.

Some of the photos you are seeing are when Roger and Ginny Schuyler of Crescent City, CA first received it from us. Yes, much work was ahead of them. When I received his packet in the mail in 1999, I was amazed! The little 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express was better than new. We had plans to use its original 216 six cylinder engine, however the Schuyler’s choice of a small block V-8 turned out very well. The bright paint, side curtains, and white wall tires make it the eye- catcher at all the shows. Roger told me at its first show, it received a 2nd place out of 500 vehicles! We can see why.

While writing this article, we found the phone number we had for the Schuyler’s was no longer theirs. If anyone knows where the Schuylers or this little 1937 Canopy Express are located, we would sure be interested in reconnecting with them. Email us at jcarter@oldchevytrucks.com.  Please see updated information below the images.

1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express
1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express 1937 Chevrolet Canopy Express

Update:  June 14, 2012

The new owners have been found!  They are Hap and Karen Volk of southwest Oregon.  The Canopy Express is said to be just as clean as when first restored.  As often occurs with a vehicle this nice, the owners hesitate driving it because of the possibility of scrapes, gravel chips, and related road damages.

They have considered selling it at about their cost of $40,000.  If you are a serious buyer, the owners can be contacted at karen@karenvolkrealty.com or call (541) 672-4444.



1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine
Owner:  Gary Witmer

1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine

Original Photo Above

In our Feature Truck of the Month series, we try to show the more unusual GM trucks. This is no exception. It falls perfectly into this category.

Purchased new in 1937, this GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine truck has stayed in the same family almost 75 years. Bought in Williamsport, PA by Arthur (Witty) Witmer as a cab and chassis. It soon was changed into the largest and strongest tow truck in the surrounding counties. Its 20,000 pound winch could handle any truck of its day.

Witty hand built the tow bed from steel purchased in town. It became a true one-of-a-kind vehicle. The boom was telescopic and could raise the vehicle being pulled. It looked factory made. The truck was so well built that he had many contracts from over-the-road freight companies to tow their rigs if trouble developed within a 50 mile radius. Nothing in the area could out pull Witty’s GMC.

The 5 Witmer children always remember the big GMC being kept in a building beside the combination family home / Amoco gas station plus repair garage. They grew up during the Great Depression and it was this GMC that provided a little extra income for the large family during such difficult times. This was a time when the family grew strong sharing and working together as a team. Their strong family ties and appreciation of what they had together followed them throughout their lives. Along with all their helping with the service station and repair garage, plus Witty being on call with the GMC tow truck twenty-four hours a day, they survived with the necessities.

Even during WWII when all of Witty’s hired help joined the military, he with the family ran the service station and garage. The big T-16 GMC was the link that provided the family with just a little extra.

The old GMC was retired in the early 1960’s. It had paid its dues. It had received four inline 6 cylinder GMC engines, various clutches, many brake jobs and numerous other repairs that are given to 25 year old work trucks. Of course, the more modern 18 wheelers were so much larger than in the early years. It was more of a chore for the T-16 GMC to pull the largest tractor trailers successfully. It now is stored behind one of Witty’s grandson’s buildings!

And now, the rest of the story! A few years ago one of Witty’s sons, Gary Witmer of Blue Springs, MO noticed a 1:24 scale model of a 1938 GMC T-16 truck on the market. It was made by Danbury Mint in Danbury, CT. It looked so much like dad’s old tow truck! The details were amazing. Of course, the bed was different but the cab and chassis were like the one Gary remembered during his family’s early years in Pennsylvania. As he looked at this new Danbury model the wheels in Gary’s head began to turn. Would it be possible the transform this scale model into a truck like his father used for so many years?

The more he thought about this, the more enthused he became. Yes, it would be a work of love, a tribute to his family and their younger years growing up during the depression and the lean times of WWII.

Gary is more of a perfectionist, just like his father, so the work ahead to build this correct tow truck was not considered impossible. With his memories of the old GMC and the following photos (the family won’t sell it) Gary created the drawings that would be the blueprints for this one-of-a-kind creation.

Small pieces of brass were formed, connected, soldered, and painted into the exact copy of the real thing. He even shortened the frame of the Danbury model.

Gary spent 400 to 450 hours last year to create this Witty GMC T-16. It is truly a work of art and an honor to his family and their strength. It is the reason they survived so well during difficult times.

You can contact Gary Witmer at: glwitty1@aol.com.

1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine
1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine
1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine 1937 GMC T-16 Cab Over Engine

1935 Chevy 1/2 ton

Saturday, October 1st, 2011

Owner:  Roger Sorenson

1935 Chevy 1/2 ton

Such a rare 1/2 ton!  It was made during the “Great Depression” when new vehicle sales were extremely low.  Only a small percentage of the population could buy a new truck or car.  About seven years later when our country became involved in World War II, most all vehicle assembly plants were changed to war material production and there was almost no truck and car manufacturing.  Pickups like this 1935 just kept being used!

After the war they were mostly worn out and had a very “pre-war” appearance.  The large amount of wood that was part of the early cab construction had begun to deteriorate.  The non-hydraulic cable operated brakes were ready for some major upgrades.  Beds, rear fenders, tires, and mechanicals needed much to bring them to useable standards.   Money was in short supply!  The popular choice was to try to drive the old truck until it just couldn’t keep going.  Then it was usually junked for a popular post-war truck.  Financing a new model with more modern upgrades and an updated cab design was often less expensive.  Thus, few of these 75 year old trucks remain.

The owner and restorer of this 1935 Chevrolet 1/2 ton is Roger Sorenson of Lacrosse, Wisconsin.  He found it in pieces December 1999.  The remaining cab wood was not restorable and the mechanicals were locked in place.  Even the bed parts were not repairable.  It lacked a dash, seats, bumpers, braces, and so many small parts that were lost during the years of disassembly.

Roger considered it his challenge in life to make it like a new 1935.    The four years in its restoration consisted of so much research and locating restorable 75 year old GM parts.  He became an expert of 1935 Chevy pickups.  Older books, the computer, talking to others, and even time spent in a library prepared him with the knowledge to do this intensive restoration.  All items except the bed components are original GM, either new or restored used.   Bedsides, wood, tailgate, etc. were reproduced as these items were not obtainable in even fair condition.

Finally this labor of love found Roger the owner of a “new” 1935 1/2 ton.  It’s like it was at the factory and before it even left the dealership or driven on a 1935 road.

Once completed, it was now time to see if it was done correctly by the most professional judges.  The restoration was completed July 2011, just in time for three of the more detailed judging shows in the Midwest.  Roger’s little ½ ton scored as follows in the truck class:

July – Vintage Chevrolet Club America; Gundee, MI, received First Junior.

July — Vintage Chevrolet Club America; Flint, MI, received First Senior.

September – Antique Automobile Club of America; Oak Brook, IL, received First Junior.

Quite an accomplishment for the first three months out.  In each show Roger received the highest award available for a first timer!

Jim Carter’s Truck Parts is proud to have this rare original pickup as our feature truck for October 2011.  In our 30 years we have not had the opportunity to find a 1934-36 high cab Chevrolet truck in this new condition.  Roger states he will be happy to help anyone with their technical questions in the restoration of their early Chevrolet truck.    You may contact him at s5secret@aol.com.

1935 Chevy 1/2 ton 1935 Chevy 1/2 ton
1935 Chevy 1/2 ton 1935 Chevy 1/2 ton
1935 Chevy 1/2 ton

1936 Chevy Half Ton

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

Owner: Pat O’Brien




This rare little ½ ton survived its 75 years mostly because it stayed with one family; it probably never ventured beyond the city limits, and was used mostly by a mechanic that lived in an area of dry air that discouraged metal rust. For the trucks first two years, it was driven by Virginia Swaim to high school each day in Prescott, Arizona.  After graduation her father used it as a shop truck in his auto repair business until he retired. Then, Virginia kept it mostly stored in a backyard garage until she passed away in 2002.

The new owner and restorer is Pat O’Brien also of Prescott, Arizona. He discovered it in the same closed garage where it had spent all of its later years. Virginia sold it to Pat several years after he discovered it by accident as he drove by the garage door that was open for a few minutes. Maybe this second ownership was meant to be! Pat was even given the pickups entire history in receipts from the day it was purchased. A box of so many receipts; from tires, gasoline, batteries, radiator hoses, and any other little repairs that needed during so many years.

Of course after all those years as a shop truck and many more sitting in the daughters garage, it was in need of so much more than a surface cleanup. Pat was ready for this challenge. His goal was to have his 1936 look bone stock on the outside with a change to most of the running gears that only the more knowledgeable truck person would recognize. Keeping an inline six cylinder was a must! He added a 292, the larger of the 1963 through 1972 design. The 4 speed was replaced with a Chevy car full synchronized floor shift 4 speed from the 1960’s. This floor shift system was almost a natural for the 1936 pickup.

The differential rear end was a great find. Removed from a 4 x 4 S-10 pickup, it matches the original 6 bolt wheel pattern and the distance between the rear wheels is just right for this 1936 ½ ton. Pat only moved the axle saddles slightly to the side and the original 1 ¾  wide rear leaf springs connected perfectly!

Keeping the 1936 front axle was important. He wanted it to keep the non-lowered original appearance. The front end difference is the hidden 6 bolt disc brake system fitted to his 1936 axle. Yes, the original 1936 lever action shock absorbers were rebuilt. They really are an excellent shock – just expensive!

The real creation was keeping the new dual chambered master cylinder under the floor between the original clutch and brake pedals.  Most people give up here on 1936-46 brake modifications and attach swing pedals to the firewall. Not Pat! He did it like the 1936 design. A bracket to support the pedals was attached to the transmission case much like GM did it. The opposite bracket on the original frame rail could then be utilized with the pedal shaft as from the factory.  Even the hand brake lever is attached to the newer 4 speed transmission like it was in 1936.  It comes through the floor in the correct position.

The 6 hole wire wheels are another eye catcher. To keep it like GM made it, Pat found these new US handmade wires to look original. Not cheap! They really help it keep its 1936 look and hold the radial tires well at any speed.

Pat O’Brien has created a total package that is one of a kind. We call it his little original speed machine!  No, we didn’t say inexpensive.  People are drawn to it at car shows or just moving in traffic. Virginia Swaim and her father would be proud!!

To contact Pat, email at: professorpat@hotmail.com


1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton Pickup

Monday, February 14th, 2011


I found my 36 Chevy pickup in the 1980’s on highway 41 somewhere south of Chicago. It was running but had a big crack in the block, so to drive it I had to carry a bucket of water with me.
1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton Pickup
My love of the 36 pickup goes back to 1948 when I was four and my dad (just home from the Navy and WW2) was working as a tenant farmer in east central Illinois. The owner of the farm had a 1936 Chevy pickup which my dad was allowed to drive back and forth from our house to the main farm. It was the “first” pickup I remember riding in and the fascination I had for that old truck stayed with me. Needles to say, when I saw old “Willy” (named after my dad) sitting ‘for sale’ along Hwy 41 many years later, I had to have him.

At that time I lived in Terre Haute, Indiana and had a concrete block company and an excavating business. My intention from the beginning was to restore old “Willy”. However as some of you “old timers” might remember, the early 80’s were tough years for the building industry and a lot of old “Willy” projects got delayed.

In 1986 I packed up my family, a few pieces of equipment, old “Willy” and moved to the Charlotte, NC area. The economy was much better there and by 1988 I started an auto detail and wreck recovery business. Old “Willy” finally was getting some attention. When the work crew had some extra time, we took old “Willy” to the frame.

Another hick-up in the 1989 economy put the project back on hold and old “Willy” was destined to become a “pile of parts”. We had to shut the shop down. A sluggish economy, a divorce and two daughters in college paved the way for old “Willy” to remain a pile of parts for several years.

Not until 1999 did I seriously get back on the project. All the chassis parts were examined and many were rebuilt. New brake lines were installed, king pins, bushings, spring pins; any part worn was replaced. The passing of time and moving things around caused a number of parts to get lost. We found a parts truck in Wisconsin and had it shipped to North Carolina. This provided an engine, transmission and a few other needed chassis parts.

In 2005 I contracted with a small paint and body shop to start painting the sheet metal and body parts. There were some real challenges to return a fairly rough and rugged bed, cab, fenders, doors, hood, etc. to “like new” condition.

In 2009 I was finally able to again open my own shop and begin the reassembly of old “Willy”. After all those years “Willy” was about to be complete. I thank our crew, Chuck (manager), Whit (mechanic) and Steven (painter) for doing a super job getting our beautiful ’36 in show condition.

We also want to thank Jim Carter’s Old Chevy Trucks for helping us with several technical questions we had in the reassembly. We were able to get a number of new and used parts from the Jim Carter catalog.

PS: Over all these years, old “Willy” has finally successfully evolved from a truck in a box to a beauty back on the highway of pride.

1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickup 1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickup 1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickup
1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickup 1936 Chevrolet 1/2 ton pickup

1938 GMC COE

Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Owner: Jim Raeder


1938 GMC COE

1938 GMC COE

When it was new, my GMC was a water truck on the Altoona PA fairgrounds. It sat under a big oak tree for many years until the second owner bought it. It didn’t have license plate on it until the 1970’s. The second owner did a basic restoration and painted it in the same colors and scheme as it was when new. He also put  two speed GMC rear end in it, shortened it, and made a fifth wheel out of it. I bought it in about 1998 with 12,500 original miles, a gas ration sticker from WWII in the window and the second owner claimed the original tires which at first I didn’t believe but now I think he may be correct. My future plans are to do a more detailed restoration and install a 302 GMC engine and five speed transmission to make it more usable while keeping the original character of the truck. I will keep the tires, engine, trans and rear end so it can be returned to stock. Since I bought the truck I have only come across five of these 38 COE’s.  Jim Raeder
1938 GMC COE

1938 Chevrolet

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

Owner: Don Cotrona

1938 chevrolet

Now, this is just like they used to be!

A 1938 Chevy 1/2 ton rebuilt, beginning with the bare frame and made to look as it was on the dealer showroom over 70 years ago.

The owner and restorer is Don Cotrona of Wallinford, Connecticut. Almost no compromise was made to keep it like it was when driven off the assembly line in 1938. Don even uses the rare 1937-1938 16 inch wheels with the eight slots. Note the correct Brewster green paint, oval bumper bolts, and black front and rear window frames.

This little 1/2 ton was bought 37 years ago when Don was 16 years old. Even though well used it was ‘love at first sight’. He had personally saved $300.00 and thus could make the full purchase.

The disassembly and removal of six layers of paint began immediately. This was the inexpensive part! Putting it back together for regular use on a schoolboy’s budget made it a much more time involved project. It finally became his daily driver after straightening all fenders and cab plus using locally found paint and upholstery. This 1938 became Don’s to school driver. He even dated his future wife while it was his only transportation!

Then came college, marriage, a new home, children and more college. Don kept his little pickup in storage knowing someday it would come back to life. He collected parts for many years from collectors, swapmeets, and answering ads in car magazines. Even the new old stock grill was found in two halves over several years.

So now the rebuilding is complete about 36 years after its initial purchase. Don has made it as the Chevy dealer would have sold it in 1938. Note the snow tires. A necessity for a New England pickup when sold new in the winter. It came with the hand built trailer hitch formed to fit the rear bumper braces. The installation of the new mirror arms is due this month. The old 6-volt radio (see antenna) was required by a teenager that drove the truck in the early years. The little 216 six-cylinder engine and three-speed transmission couldn’t run better. One difference now is that it never sees rain. Water occurs only on washday!

Don Cotrona can be contacted by email: don@hammelny.com

1938 chevrolet 1938 chevrolet 1938 chevrolet

1939 Chevrolet Model XHJC

Sunday, March 1st, 2009

Owner: Brian Robinson

1939 chevrolet model xhjc

Now that our 1939 has had it’s restoration completed we thought we would send you some photos of the finished product.
You will notice that the 1939 New Zealand trucks were noticeably different in the cab area than the American trucks (other than the steering wheel being on the right side!) which could be of interest to others.

Thanks for all your assistance with parts.
Bryan Robinson, Tirau, New Zealand

1939 chevrolet model xhjc 1939 chevrolet model xhjc 1939 chevrolet model xhjc

1937 Trailabout

Monday, December 1st, 2008

Owner: Ron Loos

1937 trailabout

It’s 1937 and the Great Depression has affected all households. Sales of new cars and trucks have dropped and most manufacturers have permanently shut their doors. The struggling survivors must add ways to stay above the level of bankruptcy.

One of General Motors ideas was to increase sales by adding a new product that their GMC dealers could market. This was the Trailabout, an all purpose small trailer that could be used by both car and truck owners. GMC produced it with little added expense. Most items were already used on their 1/2 ton pickup. The bed, taillights, fenders, wheels, and hubcaps were in stock. The additional GM investment was the light weight metal frame with tongue.

Sales were low during it’s two year production. It is suspected that the $350.00 price discouraged most buyers. During the Depression people could make a trailer from a salvage yard pickup truck or just build one from used materials. The savings would be great over the Trailabout.

Today, finding a real Trailabout is next to impossible. They were bought for hauling and most were never garaged. Their wood floors were probably gone in less than 10 years.

The only Trailabout known to exist belongs to Ron Loos (ronloos@charter.net). Its life began in 1937 in Atlanta, Georgia. It was towed to a new home in Independence, Missouri in 1987, then was hauled to Ron’s home in California mid 2008. Ron is giving it a ground up restoration and will be pulling it to shows with his almost one of a kind 1938 GMC Canopy Express. Won’t that be the talk of any show!

1937 trailabout 1937 trailabout 1937 trailabout

1937 trailabout 1937 trailabout

1937 GMC T-14

Saturday, September 1st, 2007

Owner: Richard Carroll

1937 gmc pick up truck

Not only is this 1937 GMC T-14 very unusual but it is one of the only remaining examples of a pure original in existence. It is a part of history and will remain un-restored.

Owner Richard Carroll, of Greenfield, Massachusetts saw this little ½ ton 40 years ago with a for sale sign in the window. It had been used on a farm in Swansea, Massachusetts, by the original owner and showed 15,000 miles. In the glove box were the Certificate of War Necessity Papers. This allowed 30 gallons of gasoline per quarter and for farm use only during the World War II shortages. Even in 1967 it was quite unusual and Richard just had to own it.

He now drives it for pleasure only during nice weather and has added 26,000 miles during the last 40 years. Several years ago, the Danbury Mint (producer of authentic models) heard about this rare pickup. They spent much time measuring and photographing this vehicle. In 2005 they introduced an authentic model of this 1937. It can now be purchased from their catalog of special vehicles.

1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck

1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck

1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck 1937 gmc pick up truck

1936 Chevrolet

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

Owner: Leo Stokesberry

1936 chevrolet pick up truck

A one of a kind truck! Yet, it is displayed regularly and is a part of local parades and drives.

This unusual 1936 Chevrolet 1 1/2 ton has been owned by Leo Stokesberry of Filer, Idaho for 28 years. With it’s original 34,000 miles it has required only fresh paint, tires, and a general detailing. It even still has it’s original 207 cubic inch six cylinder.

Because Leo lives in Idaho sugar beet country, he decided to add an original used side dump bed that was so popular may years ago. Yes, he certainly made this 1936 a part of history. These sugar beet trucks aren’t raised by a hoist on the front, the beds only are tipped to the side to easily remove the contents. The delivery terminals had a special lift that raised the side of the bed to unload the beets. See Photos!

Note the very rare accessory white turn signal arm on the left side of the cab. This is operated mechanically by the driver to tell a following vehicle that a left turn is coming. It is extended horizontally before the turn!

Leo trailers this 1936 to many distant shows and then it is driven throughout these local areas. He is a member of the American Truck Historical Society and has attended all of their annual conventions with his special truck since 1995. These shows have taken him from Baltimore, MD to California and many cities in between. This 1936 just keeps running with little maintenance.

Many of the enclosed pictures are from the 2007 ATHS convention in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Leo’s 1936 is shown during a sponsored day trip to the top of Pike’s Peak – elevation 14,110 feet. It climbed the hard surface and gravel road with little problems. Note the remaining June snow drifts in the background.

Obviously Leo Stokesberry loves using his truck. He maintains it properly and enjoys using it on local roads through the U.S.A.

1936 chevrolet pick up truck 1936 chevrolet pick up truck 1936 chevrolet pick up truck

1936 chevrolet pick up truck 1936 chevrolet pick up truck 1936 chevrolet pick up truck

1936 chevrolet pick up truck 1936 chevrolet pick up truck

1935 Chevrolet

Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

Owner: Ed Brouillet

1935 chevrolet

During the early 1930’s the US Army strongly encouraged General Motors to develop a light weight people hauler for their military needs. GM’s answer to this is what they called a Suburban. The finished product was placed on a ½ ton truck chassis. This allowed GM to use most of the existing items from their pickup. New tooling was only necessary for the body and seats keeping engineering and production costs low. The new Suburban had a wood framed skinned over sheet metal body. The doors, cowl, front fenders and front floors are all 1/2 ton.

As with the other earlier 1935 Suburbans a lift gate was not yet available. A canvas drop curtain was factory installed. The top is black oil cloth over wood bows which caused an early grave for these Suburbans. Once a top leak developed years later and more and more patches were needed, the interior began to stay wet longer. Rust and wood rot soon took over.

The featured early 1935 Suburban has been owned by Ed Brouillet of Fairfield, CT for about twelve years. It has been restored as new. Ed states it is the ‘first’ oldest Suburban. The other five 1935 models known to exist are not this low of ID number.

It is restored with a Swifts red body and black fenders. An original 207 cubic inch six cylinder is in place with a 3 speed floor shift transmission. It has most all details correct and looks as great as in 1935.

Fortunately, Ed enjoys showing his piece of history. It is seen at several shows in the New England area each year. His personal collection of antique hand operated house vacuum cleaners are displayed in the back. Ed always stays with his Suburban at shows. He loves talking to people about this first Suburban and his vintage vacuum cleaners. It can be a very memorable experience!

1935 chevrolet 1935 chevrolet 1935 chevrolet

1935 chevrolet 1935 chevrolet

1936 GMC

Saturday, April 1st, 2006

Owner: Pat Kroeger

1936 gmc pick up truck

I bought my 1936 GMC T-14 from the second owner in Arizona in 2003. It was restored in 1989 by the original owner who bought it in June of 1936 and the truck has been in Arizona since new until I bought and had it shipped to Florida.

I have rebuilt the brake system, replaced the bed wood and I am going to replace the tires this spring. The head has a crack in it and it is going to be replaced in a few weeks.

1936 gmc pick up truck 1936 gmc pick up truck

Buy Parts for 1934 to 1946 Trucks

1934 Chevrolet

Tuesday, November 1st, 2005

Owner: Steve Sickler

1934 chevrolet truck

I would like to submit a picture of my 1934 Chevy 1 1/2 ton truck for your feature trucks gallery. It has been a Pennsylvania truck since new. It started life as a produce truck in Dallas Pennsylvania, about 6 miles from where we live. After 72000 miles and a couple of owners I purchased the truck about 3 years ago. My son and I have the 1934 to where it road worthy and looking look. A number of parts for the work came from Jim Carter.

Steve Sickler

1939 Chevrolet

Monday, August 1st, 2005

Owner: Will Peterson, Winnemucca, Nevada

1939 chevrolet pick up truck

I purchased my 39 Chevy in 1973 for 500$US. I drove it in original condition for several years. After 3 wives, it has been the only thing I could hold onto. I used it for wood hauling, then with a 600 gal. tank, for water, then in the 80’s, it went mining with me, serving well hauling gold ore down a treacherous road. Finally, it was ready restoration, which started with a new water pump, then a new head gasket, and on and on. I tore it down for a frame off restoration. I sand blasted the frame, checked the 4 speed transmission, installed all new brake stuff, and a clutch replacement. Then I checked out the bottom end of the engine and gave it a new valve job. New glass and upholstery followed and Finally paint and reassemble. It is almost totally original with a 41- 46 stepside pickup bed.

While tearing it down, I removed the top from the non-synchro 4 speed to clear the cab when I pulled the 216. It looked very good gear-wise for all the thrashing it has absorbed. It makes noise in first gear as do all spur cut gears.

The 216 runs pretty good, so I removed the pan and re-shimmed the rods, replaced the seals and gasket. It was so nasty, with rat poop and nesting, old grease and who knows what. No rust though I had a vision of it shiny and clean, like brand new, pulling me back to a simpler time. My wheel base is 158.5 in. but the frame is drilled for 133in. which will put it in long bed pickup box category or short bed with 110 in. That makes it a heavy duty pickup with single wheels at the rear. An Express model..

I bought a good sandblaster and new compressor, and ordered new brake parts, new motor mounts, new cab mount kits from Carters. When I pulled engine and transmission I found really caked on old Saudi oil on it. So I pulled pan and head and side panel, lifters. Next came pistons. The block did not require ridge reaming, and I bought a digital c-clamp for measuring all of this. Bore is standard, as is the crank , so cool. Crank and rods are in good shape, I installed new rings and pistons, the gap on mine is 1/16 in., and the manual calls for .005 to .015, I read 1/32 can be acceptable. I re-shimed rods to .002, using the method the old mechanics used in 1941 manual. After reading the manual, I am lucky to not have to do the crank.

It was interesting to find out how the babbit rods work. The misconception of dipper is that it is a dipper type system for all engine speeds. But actually the dippers only dip at very slow engine speed, as there are nozzles that direct a high pressure stream of oil to the dipper holes when engine is at higher rpm. It is a very good system, misunderstood. Even when one installs replaceable insert type rods in this engine, it is still the same dipper-nozzle type oiling. It really works good if set up properly. I installed an oil filter and detergent type oil is used.

New clutch disc, new rings and pistons, new motor mounts, master and wheel cylinder repair kits were ordered.

Cab work: I removed all the inner panels, only rust on the overhead wiper cover. Very good condition for 66 years old. I removed the dash to redo the gauges. Sorting out all the fasteners, I had to use them as samples. Not one of them was useable. One thing missing was the horn. It is a two tone type, as there is a switch on the dash with city tone or country tone. The next project was the cab and windshield. The windshield was tough, as the lower v-strap was rust-welded in the 377$us frame. I managed to salvage most of it but I had to buy new v straps and glass, repair the frame a bit, and paint over the repairs.

I pulled the dash out with all the wiring, so the cab was now totally stripped. I sand blasted the whole cab and put in sound proofing after interior painting. All the wiring and some of the switches were replaced. I was thinking, “This thing will be like brand new, almost….I know there is an end to it, somewhere down the line…It is just so much fun”. I got a new windshield for 40$us. This was the best deal I got.

New parts from Carter showed up. The crank and rods were just fine. I re-did the shims on the rods according to a 1941 manual. Did not use plastigage, they showed how to get it tight and then loosen by .002 so the rod would just slap back and forth by hand. I removed 003 from each rod bearing. I put the engine back together with new oil tube for rockers, new water pump, valve job, and gaskets.

March 13, 05, I installed the engine, started it without water, ran for about 20 seconds, sounds good…. I got a 1955 stepside bed, 78 in long, with no fenders on it, but with good metal and a tailgate. Fenders from Jim Carter’s go for $250.00 each. I can run it around without rear fenders for awhile anyway. I do plan to get to Hot August Nights in Reno this year. I had to repair the wiper motors and the covers by riveting aluminum sheet over a section of rusted out metal. I then installed new brake lines, all new rubber, brakes are ready now.

Body work is unending sanding. I got new side window, it seems like everything I touch has to be fixed in some way. I decided on sunrise red trim, fenders and running boards brown with the cab and bed Almond. Saw the older Chevy on the front of the Jim Carter’s catalog and was inspired. I installed cab with new mount. The grille had small red remnants in the horizontal lines and the front Chevrolet emblem was red. Evidently it was a decal. Using one color for the big basics unitized the beauty of the 39 design. Brown looks good in the interior.

I ran the motor for 1 hr, all was well after I adjusted the valves. This engine sounds like a new one, with no unusual noises. By this time I was almost done. I installed the interior trim from Carter’s. It looks like a new pickup. Red trim was next. Upholstery was initially a Saddle Blanket type. I installed antifreeze and new side terminal battery on April 7, 05. Now that I was nearly done, it was similar to having a kit car shipped to my garage with all the engineering done. Just put it together. I got a very sound feeling of pride, an appreciation of 10 for the people that created this truck back in 1939.

On April 19, 05. I installed the wiring for the alternator (I kept the original generator ), started it up, charged just fine. I tried to turn it off, no way. Then I remembered reading in Carter’s catalog about a diode to stop that. The alternator provides current at idle to operate the ignition, bypassing the battery. I also installed the hard yellow pine into the bed. I used polyurethane for protection. The bed only has 7 boards, making it a 1946 model, according to Carter’s, and it looks the same as earlier, down to the square nuts used. It is also a wee bit wider than 1939 models. A lot of the bed components were the same from 32 to early seventies. I installed a new glove box from Carter’s, it is made real good and fits super. Red wheels, hard yellow pine bed boards, red hold down strips, were installed and look good. Now , it was time to bleed the brakes, wire up the Chevy taillights. I think it is done. I think I will go for a ride with no license plate but and old 1934 Calif. one I found many years ago. I bet the cops will let me go……

Editors Note: Because many dates were not noted, this article has been edited slightly from the original diary format.

1939 chevrolet pick up truck 1939 chevrolet pick up truck 1939 chevrolet pick up truck

1939 chevrolet pick up truck 1939 chevrolet pick up truck 1939 chevrolet pick up truck

1938 Chevrolet

Friday, July 1st, 2005

Owner: Dan Sauter

1938 chevrolet pick up truck

I bought my 1938 Chevy truck at an estate sale in Lindsborg, Kansas on October 4,2002. Since that time I have performed a frame off restoration on the truck. The frame and body panels were all blasted to bare metal, and the repainted to their original colors. The metal interior panels including the dash were blast to bare metal and then repainted the original brown with wrinkle heat treat paint supplied by Jim Carter, to give the interior an original look. All the chrome including the grill was sent out to be plated. The master and wheel cylinders were sleeved and rebuild. The engine was is good condition, I got by with cleaning it and painting to original gray and replacing gaskets. Doing everything myself other than machining, plating and upholstery in my free time quickly turned into approximately two years. I still have to install my new kick panels to finish the interior. I have taken it to a couple of shows and get a lot of looks. Everyone asks about the interior, and I tell them it’s Jim Carter magic. Would I do it again? YOU BET!

1938 chevrolet pick up truck 1938 chevrolet pick up truck 1938 chevrolet pick up truck

1939 Chevrolet

Tuesday, February 1st, 2005

Owner: Sergies Lucas

1939 chevrolet truck

Article and photos by MB Johnson Holdings Pty Ltd, South Townsville Old 4810, Australia. copyright 2004 MB Johnson Holdings Pty Ltd. all rights reserved. Sergies Lucas is a 51 year old self-taught timber craftsman with vision, creativity and a passion for achieving a standard of product that has long been lost to the world through natural attrition.

Not that Sergies has plans to build his own casket just yet, but if he did, you can bet it would be impressive.

However, in addition to a natural affinity for life, timber and vintage memorabilia, Sergies wanted to restore an old vehicle for promotional and delivery purposes in his business.

In the mid 90’s, he asked associates to keep a lookout for an old pick-up truck. He didn’t care what make or model, just so long as it was vintage. It also had to have timber work so that restoration would exemplify his trade.

Eventually a friend mentioned that a cane farm at Giru, between Townsville and Ayr, was for sale …. and there was an old pick-up truck in the shed which also was for sale.

On inspection it turned out to be a 1939, 3/4 ton Special, Chevrolet and, although they had to hot-wire it and attach a make-shift petrol tank; it started.

“It wasn’t ‘gone in 60 seconds’ but I test drove it once around the house,” Sergies said.

And although the vehicle’s shape wasn’t what he first had in mind, any disappointment had turned to ardour before he returned to Townsville.

“I had even chosen the colour scheme.

“But I wanted to check with Queensland Transport regarding the legalities of driving the vehicle, albeit restored, on the road.

“They didn’t have a problem. In fact, because the original design didn’t have doors, they weren’t required. Nor was it required to have seatbelts fitted.

“Although the vehicle was in sad shape when I bought it, I think I got excellent value for $2,000” he said.

Sergies knew he had to strip the vehicle down to its last nut and bolt and sandblast, clean, paint and replace worn-out parts. It was a daunting task.

But fortunately there was enough of the old timber left to use as templates to manufacture the new timber components. In fact, whatever was made in timber, or could be changed, either for improvement or by necessity, was restored in the finest, furniture-grade Jarrah.

The steering wheel, for example, epitomised Sergies’ work standards but almost spelt the end of the road for both him and the project.

Sergies decided to grind the old bakelite off the steering wheel and replace it with timber. An innovating thought.

“In a last-ditch attempt to get a steering wheel off another truck to act as a stopgap while I restored the original wheel, I pulled hard on the wheel while a friend hammered the steering column with a punch.

“Suddenly it let go and I went flying off the back onto the ground, landing on my back and both elbows, with the steering wheel still in my hands. The impact shattered my right elbow and broke the corresponding shoulder blade.

“I spent the next month off work,” Sergies said.

The next step in the Chevy’s back-to-the-future experience was to recondition the motor.

Although Sergies has basic knowledge of the internal-combustion engine, he is, by his own admission, not au fait with the intricacies of Gottlieb Daimler’s invention.

“The motor was taken to a friend’s workshop for assessment. The prognosis for four of the pistons was good but the other two were marginally acceptable,” he said

Sergies wouldn’t risk repairs after the vehicle’s restoration so he elected to rebuild the motor, but it included an unscheduled rebore for oversized pistons.

“When the pistons and rings arrived, they were mismatched. Matching rings were not available. I eventually obtained pistons which matched the rings from here in Australia, and the bore ended up .040 oversize.

“However, the new piston size took the cubic inch of the motor from 216.5 to 225 and increased the maximum brake horsepower from 78 accordingly. It is now a 3.690 litre engine.

“It’s a big banger,” he quipped facetiously, adding, “but you wouldn’t put it in the Holden Dealer Team’s Commodore for a run around Mt Panorama.”

Another heart-stopping moment in the life and times of Sergies Lucas and his piece de resistance was when a client came to see about a job and asked how the restoration was going.

By this time the overhauled motor was installed and Sergies offered to start it. But he had forgotten that another enthusiast had earlier looked at the vehicle and, unbeknown to him, left it in gear.

Sergies started the vehicle from outside the cabin, pushing the starter button on the floor, down with his hand. The motor fired up and kept going, taking Sergies with it, down the driveway.

“That was a rush,” Sergies said.

“Unfortunately, I had also placed a couple of ornate clocks valued at $900 each on a makeshift tray on the back and, you guessed it, one came off and crashed to the ground when the truck lunged forward. I worked all night to fix it because that client was coming in the next day to pick it up,” he said.

Other additional but unique, unobtrusive features include a lockable glove compartment under the driver’s seat for valuables when the vehicle is unattended. And the installation of a radio/cassette in the centre console so as not to spoil the original look of the dash. The aerial is secreted in the roof lining.

But unlike today’s dashboards, the Chevy’s dash is spartan.

“It has a speedometer and mileage meter in front of the driver with a smaller, dual amp and oil gauge on the right of it and gas and water temperature on the left.

“I also converted the electrical system from six to twelve volts and while the parkers are still in the headlights, I installed mudguard-mounted parkers, which were an optional extra, and turned them into indicators,” he said.

Another change was the valance which acts as a stoneguard and water-drain attached to, and shaped to follow, the under-lines of the grille. It strengthens the grille and aesthetically finishes the ensemble’s appearance at the bottom.

“But after 64 years, the original was kangaroo-Edward,” he said.

Once again parts were thwarted by the gods of supply and when the valance arrived, the middle, rear section of the item belonged to another model which rendered the unit useless. Sergies decided to make his own, naturally, out of timber.

The result is perfection. However, the only people who get to see this consummate piece of craftsmanship is the mechanic and slow pedestrians.

The actual cost of restoration including materials, parts and outside labour was $29,000, but that does not include Sergies’ labour, of which there were incalculable hours.

What at first was thought would take about 18 months, eventually took six years.

“I averaged about 16 hours a fortnight on the vehicle; over a year times six is, say, 2,500 hours, multiplied by my hourly rate of $35, equals $71,500. Plus the outside costs of $29,000 puts the value of the finished product at $100,000,” he said.

A further blow to the project saw the vehicle insured for only $15,000. Which means Sergies drives with extreme caution.

“At first the insurance company said that they would only insure it for $7,500, but after sending them a copy of the receipts and some pictures, they increased it to $15,000.

“They did not dispute that it was worth more, but they would only go to $15,000, tops. Which would cover one, maybe two of the wheels and a rear-vision mirror,” he joked.

But it’s all been worthwhile according to Sergies.

“The result is extremely satisfying,” he said. “It’s my silent salesman at industry or social events.”

Now that his dream has materialized, his thoughts have turned to the next project. But the prerequisite, of course, is a short-term completion date.

And while the casket has merit, “It’s a bit premature,” he said.

1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck

1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck

1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck

1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck

1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck 1939 chevrolet truck

1937 Chevrolet

Monday, September 1st, 2003

Owner: Al Lopez – Arizona

1937 chevrolet pick up truck

With nothing but a carport to keep the Arizona heat to a minimum, you could say I am a true back yard mechanic. All restoration of this truck took place in my backyard.

The drive train was donated by a 77 Chevy Camaro, a 350/350 combo, 3.71 gear ratio rear end, and a mustang II independent front suspension with disk brakes and rack n pinion power steering.

I want to thank Alvin Parris for his encouragement through e-mails and phone calls, to C.G. Chavira and Cisco Lopez for all their help in disassembling, welding and installation of heavy parts and to my son Cesar for helping with heavier parts and acting as parts runner. My thanks also goes to my brothers in law Pablo Olide and Lucio Cepeda for helping with body work and spraying the cab Cobalt Blue and to Juan (Jack) Ramirez for helping with the installation of the wood and assembly of the bed. Most of all thanks to my lovely wife Mary for providing us with all the sandwiches and lemonade during the hot days we worked hard during this project, also thanks to the staff of Jim Carter for supplying us with the parts needed to complete the restoration.

Al Lopez

1937 chevrolet pick up truck 1937 chevrolet pick up truck 1937 chevrolet pick up truck

1937 chevrolet pick up truck 1937 chevrolet pick up truck

1935 Chevrolet Light Delivery Pickup

Monday, July 1st, 2002

Owner: Jim Johnston

1935 chevrolet pick up truck

Hi Jim,

Enclosed is my 1/2 ton 1935 Chevrolet Light Delivery Pickup as they used to call them. It is a truck found in a barn outside of Eugene, Oregon. The chassis was outside and the rest of the truck was in buckets and/or hanging on the walls and from rafters. I hauled the rusty stuff home and began the beadblasting, sanding, powdercoating, painting, and mechanical restoration in May 1995, and had the front of the truck running by September 1995. And with Jim Carter’s help on many mechanical, and chrome parts in addition to others from Canada to Texas it is now a great driver.

Thanks Jim Johnston