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50's chevy trucks, leg room, i'm 6'4", help

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by harp, Dec 5, 2010.

  1. harp
    Joined: Jun 3, 2010
    Posts: 89


    just had my first test drive of a 59 apache, love the truck but the bench seat is fixed, my knees were sticking up, then to hit the pedals, the right ankle bent up sharply, wow, i had a cramp by the time it was over. does anybody know if changing the seat, or removing the gas tank so there's some more room remedy this problem for me? i prefer a split bench wiyh a flip down armrest.
  2. Removing the gas tank will only give you 2" max as the top back of the seat is allready nearly touching the cab. Your best bet is to get a late model seat as the are much much thinner due to advanced desighn construction.
    Just start walking around the wrecking yard with your tape measure.
    Good luck.
  3. I channeled mine 5 1/2 inches and extended the cab 10 1/2 I've had every big guy that comes in my shop sit in it and they fit just fine, most were very surprised

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010
  4. Flipper
    Joined: May 10, 2003
    Posts: 3,342

    from Kentucky

    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601


    Mine is channeled 4 inches and I ditched the stock seat and am runnin one from a Astro van that is Quite a bit thinner.
  6. Salty
    Joined: Jul 24, 2006
    Posts: 2,259

    from Florida

    I've got a chopped and sectioned 49 AD....though not extended like NONAME's...I drove the truck for years chopped and not sectioned and ended up removing the tank, and sectioning the seat base to lower the seat....mixed with lowering and removing the tank I was able to move the stock set/frame back I believe 3 inches...

    That said on this incarnation I'm going with a newer style split bench as they are less bulky and take up less room....I didnt have any problems before however I believe I'll get some gains from that mod as well...

    finally I relocated the gas and brake pedal and placed them where they were most comfy for me....I dont plan on selling the truck so it wasn't an issue and as highly modified and taken apart as the truck got it wasn't a big deal to do it at the time...

    BTW, I'm 6'4" as well...
  7. The Shocker
    Joined: Dec 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,538

    The Shocker

    My 50 Ad has the tank relocated under the bed and i mocked up a seat from an 80's elcamino with a flip down arm rest .Mine is gunna be a daily driver ,so comfort is top priority as far as the seat goes.Im gunna remove the headrests and get it recovered ,but it feels pretty comfy for $20.00 and im 6'1...
  8. rcumba
    Joined: Jun 16, 2007
    Posts: 9


    I haave a '58 with tank out and a 1965 Mustang tank under frame in back. I replaced the bench with 2003 ford truck cloth seats with electric driver's seat and I have a lot of room. I am 6' tall and do not move the seat even close to all the way back to the cab. I know, FORD seats, but they work well withiout the center console. Hope this helps.
  9. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 51,245


    88-98 chevy pickup plain bench seats seem to work ok in these trucks, they have a thin backrest.

    If you play around with moving the position of the seat any way other than making the backrest thinner, then you get into an uncomfortable position.

    I'm pondering selling my 59 extended cab truck, you could move the seat back about 2 feet if you wanted....
  10. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 31,069


    Does that truck have the stock seat in good condition or has someone already swapped seats? Bucket seats usually eat up a lot of leg room in those trucks as do some luxury car seats that are/were popular swaps. I know some big boys 300 or so lbs an 6 something that don't have a problem driving the 55/59 trucks with stock seats that are in good condition so I'd first suggest checking to see if the seat is all the way back as far as it will go if it is the stock seat.

    Otherwise the plane Jane bench seat out of an 88/98 should work or the split bench out of the same (standard cab trucks) that has the thin back. Not the fancy leather ones or the ones out of extended cab trucks though as the backs are thicker in those. You may have to section the bases of the seat though as they tend to sit a bit higher than the stock seats in the earlier trucks. I had a bench out of an 88 standard cab in my 71GMC and sat way too high and was looking out the windshield through the top part of the tinted band. I swapped to a split bench and it still sits a bit high but is a lot more comfortable.
  11. harp
    Joined: Jun 3, 2010
    Posts: 89


    thanks for the info guys, keep it coming, now i have some hope!
  12. 38zephyr
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 622


    Squirrel is exactly right , did the 88-98 seat in both these trucks and it makes all the difference . I'm 6' 240 and had room to spare . Black truck was almost undriveable with the wheel in my chest when I got it , had some weird Tahoe buckets or something in it , changed the seat and it was perfect . I put fuel cell's between the frame rails under the bed also .

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Dec 6, 2010
  13. boldventure
    Joined: Mar 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,766


    I like the "look" too. I think it improves the proportions and resolves one of my objections to most pick up cabs.
  14. octobeak
    Joined: Jun 30, 2010
    Posts: 154


    Even though its not a 50's era chevy I have a 1946 ford pickup(which is smaller) and I fit my 6'5" frame into it by modifying the column, seat and pedals. The seat is a rear bench from a 1975 datsun b210 set 4 inches from the floor. The back portion of the bench is relatively narrow putting my seating position as far back as possible. I pitched the column up to get more foot room(size 14) and moved the pedals down. I didn't use traditional rod parts but I bet you could do the same with an old wrap around rear bench.

    Attached Files:

  15. I only extended the cab because the utility boxes were to short for my frame. turned out to be the best thing I did.

    I also have an 88 chev pick up seat that I got for free. it came with a matching back seat that folds down for a bed. I modified the front seat and the back seat tracks (relocated my tank) now the front seat moves 14 inches forward and fully reclines for those naps at rest stops. hey I'm almost 70 and naps are important and there are no more drive in theaters anyway hahaha!
  16. Stitchn
    Joined: May 28, 2008
    Posts: 88


    I just finished doing this for a customer, remove the gas tank from the rear of the cab. You can keep your original seat frame but make the arms that make the seat fold forward extend to reach to the rear of the cab, so the backrest portion follows the vertical shape of the cab. Then your upholsterer can shape foam to create the desired angle for the backrest. If you remove your gas tank from inside the cab and do this you will end up with around 8" more leg and belly room.
  17. ...remove the tank, use an Astro Van 3rd seat, lots of legroom in my 55.

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