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1940’s Featured Truck Article Links

Monday, November 6th, 2017
Month Year Make Owner
December 2017 1942 Chevrolet 3/4 Ton Roger Dunford
August 2017 1941 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton Jim Shaw
May 2017 1948 GMC COE Deluxe Crew Cab Cholly Nachman
March 2017 1948 Chevrolet 1/2 Ton Deluxe Pickup Dave and Julie McBee
August 2016 1947 Early Chevy 1/2 Ton Joe Haney
June 2016 1949 GMC 3/4 Ton Dale Jacobs
September 2015 1946 GMC 1/2 Ton EC101 Larry Dessenberger
March 2015 1947 Chevrolet 1 1/2 Ton Pickup-Open Express Jim Carter
February 2015 1946 Chevrolet Ice Cream Truck Don Ranville
November 2014 1941 Chevrolet COE Earl Burk
April 2014 1942 Chevrolet 1½ Ton Herman Pfauter
March 2014 1949 Chevrolet ½ Ton Randy Priebe
February 2014 1948 Chevrolet ½ Ton Tad Shadid
January 2014 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Paul Owsley
August 2013 1946 Chevrolet 2 ton with Thornton Drive Howard Jones
July 2013 1947 GMC Joe Miller
May 2013 1946 COE Pickup Bill Knoernschild
August 2012 1940 GMC 1 1/2 Ton Truck Mike Reese
May 2012 1947-
Chevrolet Panel/Pickup Rod Lentz
January 2012 1948 Chevrolet “Heartbeat of America” Luke Stefanovsky
July 2011 1942 Chevrolet Canopy Express Scott & Betty Golding
June 2011 1945 Chevrolet 1 ½ Ton Dirk Spence
May 2011 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton John Thompson
November 2010 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Dennis Odell
September 2010 1948 Chevrolet Suburban Jerry Rivers
August 2010 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Jim Adams
May 2010 1949 Chevrolet Suburban Roy Asbahr
April 2010 1949 Chevrolet Panel Udi Cain, Israel
February 2010 1948 Chevrolet Suburban Unknown
December 2009 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Tommie Jones
July 2009 1947 Chevrolet Suburban Woody Don Bryant
May 2009 1946 GMC 1 ½ Ton Charlie
April 2009 1948- 1949 COE & Chevrolet ½ Ton Ken Wedelaar
January 2009 1948 Chevrolet 3100 Scott Scheibner
October 2008 1948 Chevrolet ½ Ton Roger Darrow
September 2008 1940 Chevrolet ½ Ton John Buhr
August 2008 1949 Chevrolet ½ Ton Steve Jones
February 2008 1941 Chevrolet ½ Ton Jeff Lewis
February 2007 1947 GMC COE Steve Neilsen
December 2006 1946 Chevrolet COE Jim Fassler
July 2006 1941 Chevrolet ½ Ton Jim Arrabito
January 2006 1949 Chevrolet Panel Mark Esposito
December 2005 1940 Chevrolet ¾ Ton Clyde Johnson
January 2004 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Denny & Bonnie Wegemer
October 2003 1946 Chevrolet Suburban John Hart
May 2003 1948 Chevrolet ½ Ton Mike Klepp
March 2002 1941 Chevrolet ½ Ton Tom Bollinger
March/April 2001 1946 GMC ½ Ton Eugene Von Gunten
Jan/Feb 2001 1946 Chevrolet ½ Ton Bruce Pile


1948 GMC COE Deluxe Crew Cab

Monday, May 1st, 2017

When your love for custom cars and hot rods has continued to grow over the years there comes a time when you really want a “one of a kind” vehicle. It must relate to your personality and have that certain flair that will never be seen anywhere else.

This creation came after years in the imagination of Cholly Nachman in his small mountain town of Lancaster, New Hampshire.

In his younger years, Cholly had limited disposable income so he personally did minor repairing and rebuilding of his and others special interest basic cars and trucks, attended local vintage vehicle shows, plus was just wishing for something to come into his life that would be more than “everyday”.

Then about 3 years ago when he reached his mid-40’s he said to himself “It’s time to stop wishing. Let’s just do it!” Cholly had mechanical talented friends as a backup, he had some extra money and he sure wasn’t getting any younger.

The decision was made to find a Chevy pickup or panel truck from the 1950’s and fulfill his dreams. In his search for ideas, he suddenly saw a COE (cab-over engine) truck of that vintage. Wow! Not only was it an eye catcher from the factory 60 years ago but he thought what an owner could do to make it different! Cholly was sold. He would find one, try to stretch it into a crew cab and add a pickup box. This combination would be his goal and he began with only some auto magazine photos.

He searched the country for the right cab for a longtime to start the project. The choice would be a deluxe 5 window COE cab. He found his choice in Florida, almost 1,800 miles away. It was shipped to John’s Welding and Repair Shop in Vermont (Now the money flow began) and soon after the rear of the cab was cut and pulled in two pieces. This totaled deluxe cab with all the floor rusted away was just candidate for this project.

The finished product had to be totally ready for highway speeds and have most all modern extras. Therefore, the “drive train” came from a 1985 Chevy Suburban with a 454 cubic inch V-8 two wheel drive. The body was removed and all the mechanicals and frame were rebuilt to be like new. Cholly wanted no repairs, once all was complete.
The long Suburban wheel base allowed for an 8 foot bed from a 1950’s ¾ ton pickup even with adding the longer crew cab. It all fit together so well including the 60 year old pickup rear fenders. All the details of this total project could fill a small book!


One of the best ways to be successful in creating a quality custom truck is to be able to call upon experts that know your rebuilding needs and are willing to lend a hand when the need occurs. Cholly knew he could be successful in most any basic vehicle update but much of creating an extended cab would be in new territory for him. Mistakes can be very expensive to correct!

The person doing the metal panel addition on the cab sectioning had been a good friend for many years and metal work was his specialty. His name is John Lovell and he operates John’s Welding and Fabrication Shop about 10 miles distance in Maidstone, Vermont. To Cholly – John is a legend! He can build / fabricate anything he puts his mind to and he’s learned a ton of skills in his 30 year career building and maintaining Ships in Alaska. He was the shop foreman for a large shipping / fuel company in Nenana Alaska – Working there from spring till fall every year and would come back to northern Vermont for the winter months while the shipyards were closed in their coldest weather. “This project would not have been started without John’s ability!” (This claim to fame is very unusual). He is retired after spending the warmer months in Alaska building and the maintaining of ships but works full time doing sheet metal repair on antique and special interest vehicles. He specializes in antique auto restoration with 30 years’ experience.

John has spent the winters in northern Vermont most of his life. Yes, it is warmer there than in Alaska and he knew Cholly back in the days when he worked in his off season shop. Cholly got lucky! John was willing to take on this very difficult cab extension at 73 years old. Impossible by most any body shop! His tools, lifting equipment and many years’ experience makes it all come together.

When Cholly and John created the extension, they cut the back off the deluxe 5 window COE cab and slid it back 33 inches. Then talented experience began! John created metal panels that fit so smoothly it appeared GM did it with tooling in the 1950’s. He made the large shaped panels to connect the roof and the sides with the original. Everything had to be just right. There was no room for any error.

Here were some of Chollys associates that were so much help in creating this unusual COE extended crew cab three years ago. Without any of them, this truck would not be as it is today.

Larry Mclain – Body Work specialist Paint Specialist
Steve Bennett – Cleaning and Fabrication Start to finish.
Wayne Gilcris – Electrical Wiring
Dillon Fosket – Welding
John Lovell – Project Manager – Fabrication Specialist.
Dane’s Upholster – Danville Vermont – specializes in Antique Upholster
Rae Davenport – Pin striping – Detailing.

With Chollys team of experts, most all of the COE crew cab was finished in about 12 months. Record Time! The results are outstanding as seen in these attached photos.

After so many years of dreaming of building a really awesome custom truck, Cholly now owns a vehicle unlike anyone else. It looks like an all original 60 year old to non-experts but it has the modern necessities. This includes a smooth riding suspension, extra horsepower and an automatic transmission. Cholly has given his special vehicle thousands of miles over the past 3 years. It’s super comfortable on long trips and is a complete blast to be out and about in. People are so drawn to the truck! Compliments occur at every stop and questions just keep coming.

Cholly stores it for most of the winter as they salt the roads heavily in New England. With a 7 ½ foot height a special garage is of course required.
Much of the fun during its first 3 years has been taking it to local Special Interest car shows. The COE has won 30 first place trophies in the truck class. Most impressive is 1st place 3 years in a row at the International Car Show in New Port, Vermont. What a pedigree!

You can reach Cholly @ cholly.nachman@myfairpoint.net

Cholly and his “One and Only”

3/4 ton long bed fits just right

Even made original Hub Caps fit model wheels

New White wall tires made all the difference!

Open for view

New England back ground

Nice Interior

Comfortable Custom

At Home

Yes, you can park it with cars on the street

COE meets an International! Are we related?

At the beginning. The COE from Florida

The separation

Placing the body on the 1985 frame

Assembly work

Cab almost complete

All together in one photo!

Cholly and John just saying Hello!

1948-1949 COE & Chevrolet 1/2 ton

Wednesday, April 1st, 2009

Owners: Bill and Ken Wedelaar

1948 chevrolet coe 1949 half ton

What a traffic stopping combination! When this pair hits the road, even the non-truck enthusiasts take note. The proud owners are Bill and Ken Wedelaar in Midland Park, New Jersey. Bill and Ken have a local auto electric shop and the restoration of these trucks has been their hobby when time became available.

The little black 1949 1/2 ton is one of the best examples of how they left the factory as it shows only 11,000 miles. Bill has owned it 15 years with almost no repairs needed except cleaning and detailing. It had been repainted when Bill found it and he added the whitewall tires. If you want to know what a pure 1949 was like when new, ask Bill or Ken.

The 1948 Cab-Over-Engine (COE) is a piece of artwork. Bill and Ken even bought another COE to get the best parts and then restored it to almost all authentic specifications. A 1954 Chevrolet 235 six cylinder is about the only update that was added. This 2 ton has been his for 25 years. Before his purchase, it hauled a large dozer to construction job sites.

Bill and Ken are obviously enthusiasts and artists in truck restoration.

They can be contacted by email at: kensautoelectric@gmail.com