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Old 12-29-2005, 02:16 PM
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1951 Chevy Pickup

Hello all,

My family was recently given the 1951 Chevy pick-up that was my wife's Grandpa's truck. It has the original engine and tranny and runs (as soon as I get the carburater rebuilt). It has a couple of modifications to the body, Stack pipes, rear bumper "tool" box, since her grandparents used it for camping. I would really like to go through this beautiful truck and give it a great makeover, frame-off if neccessary, but I have never learned how to work on cars other than basic replacing of parts from my first few cars. I do not think we want to keep it stock since we want to rod it a bit for some extra muscle and fun but do not intend for it to be a trailer queen. We live in Western Washington and I do not know where to find someone to help me out locally. Any help or suggestions would be great!!!!

Eric Bruce

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Old 12-29-2005, 02:57 PM
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Well, first off local clubs and guys can be a big help. Second Motorbooks has a book or two on classic Chevy truck restoration that are quite nice (I have the book because I have a fondness for the vehicle). I have looked through it several times and all the information is geared for the hobbyist and provides some inforamtion about the type of options and differences between different vehicles. It also has information about updating the brake and electrical systems for anything from a stock resto to a nice custom rod. I think it's a great book that has detailed pictures and plenty of captions.
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Old 12-29-2005, 04:20 PM
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put a later 235 engine into it, make a little more HP and be more reliable than the 216 babbit pounder you have ( low preassure oiling, splash oiling ). I have a '51 235 babbit pounder in my '51 Chevy Fleetline and am only keeping it because it is a rare original car, with the 235/ PG. the full preassure 235's came in a lot of Tri 5 Chevy's, a style that is popular for V8 swaps, might get 1 cheap. I work with a guy that has a '55 2dr post and a '55 2dr Convert, I think the 2dr post has a 235 6 and he is wanting to rod it, I'm waiting... would be a nice engine too keep on the stand in case my engine does go.
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Old 12-29-2005, 07:55 PM
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I think I can add something to the weirdness-meter. I have heard of some of the mid 50's GMC/Chevy trucks being available with a Buick Nailhead. That would be cool. Given the budget I'm on, something similar to the rat rod movement with a nailhead would be real sweet. Oh well, enough dreaming... for now...
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Old 12-29-2005, 08:15 PM
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We are doing one now for my father in-law . Ton of fun but you will see that they are subject to rust. This is our second one and they were both rusted in the same areas. Moving slow becuase we are working on my '32 at the same time.
here are a few picks
http://photobucket.com/albums/v281/iceburgh/truck/
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Old 12-29-2005, 08:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1982 SS
I think I can add something to the weirdness-meter. I have heard of some of the mid 50's GMC/Chevy trucks being available with a Buick Nailhead. That would be cool. Given the budget I'm on, something similar to the rat rod movement with a nailhead would be real sweet. Oh well, enough dreaming... for now...
Someone is pulling your leg I think. Chevy/ GMC did use pontiac V8's instead of the the new SBC when they first were available with V8's
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Old 12-29-2005, 08:59 PM
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I wouldn't doubt it. I've heard that it might have been, but maybe really wasn't true. It's hard to say. But either way I think a Nailhead would be a cool motor for an old pick up like that. They are all torque down low where it counts, which would be ideal for a truck. Plus the cool factor when you open the hood. I've sbc and bbc's in them but not a Nailhead.
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matt167
Someone is pulling your leg I think. Chevy/ GMC did use pontiac V8's instead of the the new SBC when they first were available with V8's
GM used Buicks too, but never in a pickup. Only the 322 was used in trucks.
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:22 PM
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An excellent forum for specific advise on your 51 is the Stovebolt page (www.stovebolt.com). Tell them Racecarl sent you

I have owned a 51 Chevy pickup for about 5 years now and I am slowly getting it back on the road. I have overhauled a 261 Chevy inline 6 (found in heavy trucks or Canadian Pontiac cars from the late 50' and early 60's). I will be running an GM 89mm tranny (4th gear is .73 overdrive). Out back will be a Lincoln 9" with disc brakes and 3:50 gears. I will be ordering a disc brake conversion kit for the front axle, so I'll have discs all the way around.
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:38 PM
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re: 1951 Chevy Pickup

I built a 51 back about 10 years ago. I used a 350 chev small block with a turbo 400 trans and newer chev open rear end. First do as 1982 SS says and pick up a motorbook and then find a reproduction service manual for your truck. It has a lot of information on how the truck was put together so you can pull it apart to do any work you might want. I have always found that it is more fun to start working on your truck in sections which will allow you to have as little down time as possible and still use your truck during the rod run season. You may want to start with the drive train. There are kits for engine and trans mounts available as well as rear end mounting. A small block chev and related drivetrain from a donor car is very very easy to install with these kits. Or you may want to continue to use the original drivetrain and start with the body work and run it in suede while you do the drivetrain and chassis later. Do a search for Nightfire and his Dodge truck and see what a very young rodder is doing. If he can do what he is doing so can you. Good luck with your project and when it comes to questions - ask away you will get lots of answers and opinions here.
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Old 12-29-2005, 10:08 PM
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Eman - am doing a frame up on a 1950 five window. Started dismantling it as soon as it hit the driveway. Its a slow process if you only have weekends to devote to it. I've had it for about 1 1/2 yrs now - getting impatient! I've blasted everything down to bare metal, added an independent front susp, a newer 3.73 rearend (kept the drums in back)slung with a four link and coilovers. Working on the cab sheetmetal now - still impatient....in retrospect, I wish I had just spent a little time getting the beast running and enjoyed it some before I started ripping it apart. Do a lot of research in to what you want the finished product to be, develop a plan and stick to it! Oh yeah.....don't get too impatient! Good luck!!!
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Old 12-29-2005, 10:33 PM
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1952 Truck

I just finished a 1952 Chevy Truck redo. I put a 1955
chevy truck 235 in it..also a 3.55 rear gear.. It's daily driver (summer time only)..does real nice on the oper road too.
onestreeter...
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Old 12-29-2005, 10:34 PM
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1952 Truck

I just finished a 1952 Chevy Truck redo. I put a 1955
chevy truck 235 in it..also a 3.55 rear gear.. It's daily driver (summer time only)..does real nice on the oper road too.
onestreetrodder...
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Old 12-30-2005, 02:59 PM
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Thank you everyone I will get some books and start working on the knowledge first to hopefully understand a bit more about the blue beast. If I can just get the Carb rebuilt and the Bushings replaced so that it does not get stuck in first gear I will at least get it moving again.

Eric Bruce
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Old 01-27-2006, 10:09 AM
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OK everyone I have not yet picked up the books I need, I will before I start, but I just received confirmation from my father-in-law that he is going to give us the LT1 motor that was in his old boat along with the Turbo 350 Tranny attached. It currently has a really tall marine intake manifold. It has been sitting for a couple of years on a motor stand. What kind of work would I need to do to get it ready to run? Can I just replace some gaskets and go or should I have someone tear it apart and go through it. He said it ran great when he took it out of the speed boat. Thanks for any input in advance!!!

Eric B.
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