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Customs 1951 UPS Truck

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 3onthetree3, Aug 9, 2015.

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  1. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Here is an interesting van. A 1951 UPS truck that is still brown and has remnants of the original UPS logos. I have never seen one quite like it. It is a Hahn all aluminum body on a Ford F3 chassis. It was a UPS truck up unitl 1973 when the story is an executive took it home for some storage, and never brought it back. I have heard stories about how UPS will not sell any of their old trucks, mostly for branding reasons, some technology reasons, and the market would be flooded with them, so they crush them all. I have read stories about how they are crushed by an excavator first, with a UPS rep standing by to make sure they are well beyond use before he leaves. Makes sense why we never see old UPS trucks on the road. I have also heard that they have a trademark on the brown color. Some tell me that I should hide the truck away, that is UPS sees it, they will come try to take it. I have a title in my name that matches the numbers on the truck, so I have a hard time believing that they could legally take it from me.
    Here she is.

    Sitting next to a shed in Upstate NY where she was found.
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  2. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    It has a crazy rear door hinge that was built so you could back up to the dock and then still open the door. It does not swing out, but pulls out then slides over, very cool hinge.

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  3. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Pulled the motor out today to see how bad she it stuck. Pretty stuck. But you can tell that this thing was well maintained. The steering is still solid, and I imagine that if a part was ever suspected of any wear, that it was changed right away. She is a late 50s 223 motor and 4 speed trans.

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  4. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 11,269

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    Neat van! Congratulations on your find.

    Ray
     
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  5. Interesting piece of history.
     
  6. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    To try to cover up the logos on the van, they used bondo. That fell off the truck, and left the logs on the driver side mostly there, and not alot left on passenger side. They guy I bought it from saved what was falling off on the driver side so it can be put mostly back together.

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  7. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Divider door behind the driver seat still works nicely.

    [​IMG]

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  8. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Inside a pocket behind the driver seat, we found the last registration and insurance card from 1973 from UPS. Numbers all match the van and the title that I have.

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  9. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    The license plate for it.....

    [​IMG]
     
  10. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 7,902

    mgtstumpy
    Member

    Can't wait to see it back on the road
     
  11. Wonder why they didn't just take a paint roller and some Brown paint (surely they had some around:D) and paint over the logos instead of going to the trouble of the bondo.
     
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  12. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    I have heard some crazy stories since I got this thing home. Guys telling me about grinding the logos off, so even if it somehow escaped the crusher, that the logos could never be used....I guess I will find out when I get her on the road.

     
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  13. 223 and 300 share common parts, early 30's even bolt into the same spot using the same motor mounts. Found this out while helping build a divco.
     
  14. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Good Morning, thanks for the info. I did not know that, the 300s I have seen have middle motor mounts, and the 223s have front and back motor mounts. Im not wanting to do alot of fab work on this one, so looking for a direct bolt in.

     
  15. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 4,031

    Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Member

    That's a rare truck and will catch a lot of eyes once it's on the road. I'd get it running and clean it up but leave the outside and inside unrestored. Which might really piss off UPS.

    "It was a UPS truck up until 1973 when the story is an executive took it home for some storage, and never brought it back. "

    If UPS sics it's legal hounds on you, the big question will be, did UPS sign over title to said executive or did he "steal" the truck from them in '73? Even though you have a title, they could play ugly. It could be a PR nightmare for them though if the press views you as the little guy being picked on by the big corp.
    Consider that UPS may offer to play nice with a one time offer to "buy you out" and pay you substantially to not only get the truck out of the private sector, but to send the unit back through their body and mechanical shops for a full restoration so they have an example of an old delivery truck.
     
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  16. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 2,939

    oldolds
    Member

    The main reason there are no old UPS truck around is because they rebuilt them untill the body was junk. Notice 1951 untill 1973. UPS was good at buying the same truck chassis. The UPS shop near me kept complete front and rear axles on the shelf. With new brakes and drums and springs. Rebuilt engines as well. They would just change out the components and repair later. The driver that came to my place said they would change out the front axle when it needed a brake job.
     
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  17. I don't have a clue as to how corporate UPS works but why not do away with all the logos?

    If you drive around with their logo it might open up a can of worms.

    No one ask but what's you plans? HRP
     
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  18. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties


    Good Morning,
    I agree with everything you said, and that could be the only catch, is that somewhere along the line, someone got a title for it without UPS knowing. I would not fight keeping the logos on, they belong to UPS. I would for sure fight to keep the truck, and keep it the same color. You are right, it could be considered "stolen" by that executive, as far as UPS is concerned, but I would think it would have had to been reported stolen? And if it was reported stolen, then that would have come up when I put it in my name. It will be interesting to see, and I will keep you guys posted.
     
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  19. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    Im not sure either. I will most likey get rid of the logos, I cant win that fight.

    Im going with a fresh 223. Gonna put power disc brakes up front and a drop axle. New Bias white walls, and drive it. Not even going to wash it, love it just like it is.....
     
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  20. 55Brodie
    Joined: Dec 15, 2008
    Posts: 746

    55Brodie
    Member

    Looks like a Chevy AD speedo and gauge cluster.
     
  21. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 3,994

    BamaMav
    Member
    from Berry, AL

    I would for sure get rid of the logos. I would even paint it a similar, but slightly different color so that they can't say you are infringing on their trademarks. Those high dollar corporate lawyers would love to harass you for every little thing they could, that's how they make their living. If they come after you, they won't stop until they make an example out of you. Can you really afford to fight them? Even though you have a title, if they think you are infringing on their trademarks or trying to make them look bad, they will come after you and every thing you own for damages. And probably take everything you have. Is it worth it?
     
  22. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,863

    Truckedup
    Member

    Contact UPS ,maybe they will give you bucks for it.... It's kinda unique I suppose . In my opinion trying to customize that thing will just turn it into a freak show.
     
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  23. Tony
    Joined: Dec 3, 2002
    Posts: 7,350

    Tony
    Member

    I cant explain why but i love that thing!
    Its pretty crazy how long UPS keeps thier trucks in service.
    51 to 73 is a long run for a delivery vehicle, and im sure there are others that have longer service lives.
    Anyway, real cool van!
    I agree, good idea to lose the logo and change the color slightly.
    I'd consider coming up with your own logo that is similar, but different enough to keep the legal hounds off your back.
    I'd keep it mostly stock and just make it clean and reliable then i'd use the hell out of it! :)
    Regardless of what you end up doing, its a great find and will be quite the hauler once you get it back on the road.
    I'm looking forward to seeing your progress.

    Tony
     
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  24. trollst
    Joined: Jan 27, 2012
    Posts: 1,688

    trollst
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I would contact them, email the same pics we see, get their opinion, try to be reasonable, and see where it goes. They'll probably tell you to get rid of the logo's, after that it becomes an old delivery truck, not a patent infringement. They have rights to their brand, and won't take any chances of anyone damaging it, as would you or I protect our brand the same way. They own the name, not the van.
     
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  25. ....................................Well.............We're hoping that's the case.;):(
     
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  26. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties


    You make a few good points. I doubt they could take everything from me unless I was using it to deliver packages.

    But I think I will stay away from the mods. Just put it back to stock and drive it. That will be tough....I love to slam everything, but it is super cool just like it is.

    I will cut the logos out and save them with the truck,I'll find something cool to go in its place.

    Thanks for the opinions and wish me luck!
     
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  27. 3onthetree3
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 267

    3onthetree3
    Member
    from Saugerties

    I had not thought of reaching out to them. Maybe that is one route. I'm gonna get it running and driving first just in case they take it....I will have at least driven it around the block.
     
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  28. Boatmark
    Joined: Jan 15, 2012
    Posts: 240

    Boatmark
    Member

    To me with the history of the truck, it would be cool to restore it (at least visually) to the way it looked new.

    I would contact UPS and see what they say about it. Worst case is they tell you not to make it look like theirs, but you may be surprised. I was involved with a big company (a marine engine company) who had someone make a similar request, and they made it work.

    They made him sign a liability release, that just said by his using the logo they assumed no liability in an accident etc..
    Their position was that because the truck was obviously an antique, and the logo being used was a 50 year old version, the truck was an obvious novelty. And therefore not implying anything to the current company. He just had to stay period correct. When he sent photos of the finished truck they made a standing offer to buy it for PR use.

    Since the UPS logo has changed, they might be open to the discussion.
     
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  29. I found this on another site. HRP

    UPS trucks face rough retirement, By Jeff Elder, Atlanta Constitution


    Q. What happens to old UPS delivery trucks? You never see a used one on the road. -- Lynn Nash, Hickory

    "They're crushed beyond recognition."

    When United Parcel Service spokeswoman Ronna Branch told me that, I thought, "That seems a little extreme."

    And it turns out "The Big Brown Machine," as UPS is nicknamed, can be a little, well, obsessive.

    The trucks are washed every day. Drivers must button their shirts up to, but not including, the collar button. There is a proper way to buckle the seat belt and start the truck.

    "This is a very well-engineered company," Branch said.

    (At one point during our phone interview, I couldn't resist asking if she was wearing brown. "Yes," she replied.)

    "It takes a long time for a truck to wear out," said Branch. "The engine is often replaced two or three times. A truck could easily be on the road for more than 20 years."

    Why not sell the old trucks to college kids, or garage bands needing to haul around equipment? (Sign here for your delivery of rock!)

    "It's for image and branding reasons," Branch said.

    You see a beat-up UPS truck careening around at midnight, it doesn't reflect well on the company handling your Christmas packages.

    "And there's a fair amount of technology in the trucks," Branch said. "We don't necessarily want our competition to see that."

    Then there's safety. Not everybody can just hop up into the driver seat of a "package car" and safely cruise it around town.

    For these reasons, "You will never see a used UPS truck on the road," Branch said.

    Then why are they for sale on eBay?

    Oh yes, dozens of them.

    OK, they're toy models of many styles of the famous UPS trucks, from the first Model T (UPS was founded in 1907) to the big-body styles made by Grumman Olson.

    How many UPS trucks are there? 108,000.

    Why are they brown? Because company forefathers admired the elegant, professional brown sleeper cars made by Pullman. (UPS historians point out that Pullman also made sleepers in red and green, but it was the brown ones that caught the eye of UPS.)

    What's that brown called? UPS Brown, and it's trademarked. Branch told me it cannot be duplicated without top-secret UPS know-how.

    What's the weirdest stuff UPS has delivered? Whale sharks, pandas and killer whales to aquariums and zoos.

    Would UPS deliver me to my mom? "We don't do people," Branch said.

    What do UPS employees think of "The King of Queens," the sitcom about a delivery truck driver played by Kevin James?

    "He's not actually in a UPS uniform. It's kind of a green uniform. So, he's not approved by UPS." Branch said.

    He will be crushed beyond recognition.
     
  30. ^^^Cool stuff^^
     
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