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Projects 1950 1 ton Panel build ... and build again!

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by kuztomklaus, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. I think it's time that I write about my 1950 Chevrolet 1 ton Panel truck.
    I've been posting some on the AD social group, but not here on the main board! So here goes...

    This whole adventure started back in 2009 when my wife decided that she was gonna give me a Panel truck for my 50s birthday present. I've been looking around for 1-2 years without finding anything useful. We even got help from our buddy's Hot Rod Scott and Stan the Panel man from NJ hoping that one of them would be able to find one, with no luck. It wasn't until we got in touch with Danimal here on the H.A.M.B. we got anywhere. It took him about 2 weeks before he found a usable truck and we didn't think twice before accepting the terms.
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    this is where he found it in a questionable area in Detroit

    The truck was payed for in August and in the end of September the Panel was hauled to NJ where Hot Rod Scott was gonna get it ready for the cross country trip that we were taking August 2010.
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    A big lady for Stans flatbed!

    Scott was going to mount the 1960 235ci engine and T-5 that was purchased from Danimal, swap out the 1 ton axles for ½ ton ones and have that ready for the end of April where I was coming to NJ, to fix up the brakes and do the wiring harness.

    After the 4 days of mad wrenching all the brakes were done, new copper brake lines (yeah I know that scare most Americans, but it is the only way to go in Sweden) The new master power brake cylinder setup, bought from gearhead, had to be modified, cuz they're made for automatic transmission only, but we made it work.
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    The steering arm had to be heated and bent, so it would clear the shock absorber! That's just one of many issues that have to be figured out when swapping 1 ton axles for ½ ton ones. Another one is that the shock mount on the rear axle of the 1 ton, is mounted on the axle tube on the inside of the leaf spring, while on the ½ ton axle they're mounted on the plate the u-bolts go through and hold the axle to the springs., not to talk about the fact that the axle is mounted on top of the springs on a ½ ton and under the spring on a 1 ton, so new support plates had to be made. Just fun stuff you have to deal with, when you're messing with the boring factory setting!
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    Eventually I'm gonna flip the axles to the top of the springs, but it have to wait till the Panel comes to Sweden and have gone through inspection.

    I wanted to have doors with vent windows, because I think they give better airflow in the cab and I needed a rear axle, so a 1955 1st series ½ ton panel parts truck was bought so
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    the rear axle, doors and other parts could be salvaged. The 1952 ½ ton front axle came from jxnslotcar through Danimal.
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    this is when I wonder if this is to massive project, to get ready in time. This should soon be prooven to be true. :(
    Several east coast H.A.M.B.ers helped out... gearhead55, coupedevil, reddhott artwork, Andy the "ckgg" and not to forget the Professor for all his support.
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    The '55 doors are in place, together with the '39 Volvo taillights and a stop lamp from a scoolbus.
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    When we came back in the end of July, we saw that everybody came together and sprayed the panel in her new colour. Even though the shade isn't completely right, was it a big surprise... Tranfer lettering surpported by the professor, really make the panel proven worthy of her new name Nui o'ka Lani, which mean: Big, great from the heavens, in Hawaiien. Even the licenceplate read "the message" in Hebrew.
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    Sadly when driving the Panel the engine was smoking up the whole neighborhood and knocked quite a bit, so even though we probably could have fixed her upp in a few days, I guess the message was, let her sit for now and get on with your trip!

    After the cross country trip was done, we hauled the panel to the shipper in PA
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    and a month and a half she arrived in Sweden, together with her travel companion.
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    Today a little over a year later she's finally getting in the garage, sporting her new sunvisor!
    I just had to test it on before tearing the truck apart.
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    More will follow shortly!

    Klaus
     
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2012
  2. The disassembly have begun!
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    Back in April 2010 the decision was mad to just "fix" the holes in the floor using old license plates, cuz there were no time to do it right. That had to wait till later.
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    Rear fenders are off and didn't reveal any obscene amount of rust.
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    The front clip came off very easy since it have been off resently, so that was very nice.
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    I've got plans on flipping the axles, but I don't wanna cut the floor so there's a limit to how much it will lower the truck. I'm going for 6-8 inches front and back, so that should give me about 8 inces between the running boards in the front and 10 in the back. My thought is to give the straight frame a small kick up over the rear axle, but there should be enough space in the front so I don't need to change the frame there.
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    Something like this is my thought. what do you think?

    Next it's time to adress the engine.

    Klaus
     
  3. jack orchard
    Joined: Aug 20, 2011
    Posts: 238

    jack orchard
    Member

    you have a unique truck. T5 trans was a wise choice. best of luck for the build. more pics....jack
     
  4. Thanks Jack!

    Time to get to the engine, so I can get it looked over.. I'm gonna use the 235 ci I got from my dear old boss (RIP) from when I worked at the Sunoco gas station in Haddonfield NJ. It was pulled from his 1956 150 and dosen't have a lot of milage on it. I'm calling it "The Jim Jones Special"
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    I've have a D&S dual intake on it that I got from my buddy Magnus for my 50's birthday and a set of Fenton headers from mothertrucker.
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    It's a damn long engine for the engine stand. I hope it can handle the pressure.

    Klaus
     

  5. Get after it man and thanks for the comments on my Buick . Summers coming though and the link will slow down in updates . I will plug away though off and on . The panel truck will be a kool truck when you get done . I am sure you dont see many of those in Sweden . It will be a crowd pleaser for sure .
     
  6. So today I started taking the engine apart. There was quite a bit of old motor oil caked under the valve cover and in the oil pan, but was only what could be expected after it has been sitting since 2004.
     

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  7. Does anybody know when hydraulic lifters were used in all 235ci engines and not just the powerglide equipped models and can you just swap the solid lifters for hydraulic ones or do you have to change the cam also?
     
  8. I really dug into my 235 today and discovered that it does indeed have hydraulic lifters and on top of that very little wear to the important bits an pieces! So there's a good chance that a good cleaning and the content of a gasket kit will make it very able to move the panel down the road safely.
     

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  9. Torchie
    Joined: Apr 17, 2011
    Posts: 1,070

    Torchie
    Member

    Enjoy your truck.
    My every day is a 1950 GMC 1/2 ton panel.
     
  10. Thanks I will do that! Just made a thingy to take off the balancer/lower pully
     

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  11. Today I took the valves out of the head and discovered that all the valves looks good, just in need of a cleanup. I'm gonna put in new valve seals, but the plastic (looks like a little cup) that sits next to the rubber valve seal is broken on one of the valves. There's not new ones in the gasket kit, so where would I buy new ones?
     

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  12. So I realized that the cup like seals are an aftermarket thing. From the factory the 235 have the little seal that's provided in the gasket kit, so I'm going with that.
    Today I cleaned the head an block with a rotating steel brush.
     

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  13. I also cleaned the intake and exhaust valves on the first 3 cylinders. I don't know what you guys call it, but you use grinding paste to make sure the valves are nice and. Well fitting.
     

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  14. Today I got the valves back in the head again with the new seals I place.
    This is an all new to me! I have never stripped a head down and then put everything back! Might not be a big deal to some, but to me it is. Engines have never been my strong side.
     

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  15. So I'm finally in progress of putting the engine back together. So with a little bit of luck I should be able to start it up in a few weeks! Dare I say before I go to speed week!


    Sent from my iPhone using TJJ app
     

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  16. Dammit to much stuff have been going on, but I finally managed to get some paint on the engine. I chose to paint it flathead ford green


    Sent from my iPhone using TJJ app
     

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  17. I got the front end and front axle of too!


    Sent from my iPhone using TJJ app
     

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  18. rougewave
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 40

    rougewave
    Member

    Stumbled on this thread while cruising the net. That's quite a journey you were on... from the find, all the way back to Sweden :cool:
    good stuff.
    I'm another guy here with a 1950 Chevrolet 1 ton panel, original except for the engine, rust free, original 17 inch split rims still on it. I've had it sitting (in the garage) for 15 years :confused: one of these days I'm gonna get after it :rolleyes:
     
  19. txturbo
    Joined: Oct 23, 2009
    Posts: 1,771

    txturbo
    Member

    I have one of those yachts.....mine is a 48.
     

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