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53 Chevy P-up- frame build suggestions

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 41 Ford pick-up, Oct 24, 2011.

  1. 1955 F-100 guy
    Joined: Jul 15, 2010
    Posts: 359

    1955 F-100 guy
    from NE Pa

    Redoing a 53 Chevy p-up truck-no engine-trans--looking for sugestions on old school vs modern built frame--must II-od trans--350 etc--- if old school what do you use for suspension-brakes--rear--steering--sbc--etc
    I always built modern frames so am not familiar with old school build--any pictures or suggestions will help--I guess what I want to know is it better to go modern parts from the start for what you get in return--better handling-stopping--- good money to good money--pm me with info- Thanks
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2011
    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601


    What ever ya do center the rear wheel in the wheel well.
    Joined: Aug 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,601


    There are a ton of threads also. Try the search
  4. waldo53
    Joined: Jan 26, 2010
    Posts: 831

    from ID

    Got any pictures?

    As far as your build goes, it all depends on what you want to have when it's done. This is just my personal opinion, but I've had it with 350/350, MustII IFS builds and truly wanted an old school truck that is still reasonably useful. I'm running a dropped axle from Sid, removed 3 leafs from the spring packs front and rear, used poly liner between the remaining leafs, stock steering and brakes. No, it doesn't ride, steer, or stop quite as nice as an IFS setup but I'm happy with it and you can do an old school build for pennies on the dollar compared to an upgraded build (unless you do a sub-frame but I've never seen one that looks quite right).

    I've always loved the sound of an inline 6 with Fenton's and Smittys and these are still easy to come by. You could also use a 261 or if you really want to go fast, get a 270 or 302 GMC. There are a lot of speed equipment upgrades you can do to these old engines. A T5 tranny works well with these motors.

    Again, just a personal opinion. Good luck on the build whatever you decide and keep us posted.
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  5. BlackLion
    Joined: Aug 11, 2011
    Posts: 119

    from Nashville

    I'm with Waldo, I love the old school ride. If you got a ton of money, you can buy a lot of stuff to look like everdamnbody else. Or, you could just roll like it was meant to roll. Mines a 283 /3spd. Not a ton of power, but she starts, stops and gets looks. Best of all it does what a truck does and carries stuff around.
  6. melsfine39
    Joined: Apr 24, 2009
    Posts: 235


    Here's what I'm working on. Its a 48 GMC with a 53 Chevy 1/2 ton frame. Went with a 3" dropped axle from Sid at along with 3" lower dual leaves from Posies, A disc brake kit from Speedway,A power steering converison from CPP, Power brakes. I using a 54 235 with a Offy dual carb intake, stainless split tube headers, A H.E.I. Dist. from Langdons Stovebolt engine co., also using Langdons trans adapter with a 2004R trans with a rear axle from a 95 Bravada,A rear mounting kit from Rutters Rod Shop. The gray Motor I'm using for mock up the red motor will go in the truck. Old school with a modern touch!. Mel:D

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  7. D-man313
    Joined: Mar 17, 2011
    Posts: 1,146


    Another option is a regular cab long bed s10 frame swap. I know its over done and not 100% traditional but thats what came available and was cheap to do. I built my truck to drive it, meaning start, stop, handle, and be reliable and thats what it is.

    Everything that could be rebuilt, got rebuilt on the frame. Running a 350/350. You can do some frame fabrication for cab/bed mounts and the radiator support needs modification. There are companies that make kits that come with all the mounts that are needed for the swap, but $1200 wasnt in the budget when i knew i could make some simple mounts. The wheelbase on the s10 is about an inch or so longer than the stock frame, so it centers the rear wheel nicely in the rear fender.

    The nice thing is the frame is all modern. So if need be i can go to a parts store pretty much anywhere in the U.S. and get parts for an s10.

    Attached Files:

  8. OneWrench
    Joined: Oct 16, 2011
    Posts: 75


    I will be going the old school route on my '53 as well. Partly because of budget and partly because it is just plain cool.
  9. 55 Mercury
    Joined: Mar 18, 2006
    Posts: 888

    55 Mercury

  10. [​IMG]

    these 3 trucks are all clipped using the orig. frames...
  11. lawman
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,667


    Use the solid axle !!!!!!!!! Go to my "Lawman" profile page and look at
    all the threads I started about the truck I built for my Grandson with his help.Almost all is old school."Grandson Grandfather update 38 chevy"
  12. oldcarfart
    Joined: Apr 12, 2005
    Posts: 1,438


    I lucked out on 1984 (C4) corvette front & rear suspension clips, want a '50's look (skirts, visor, etc.) but also think it will ride great and the upgrades will be out of sight on my '53.
  13. AAFD
    Joined: Apr 13, 2010
    Posts: 585

    from US of A

    One of Sid's dropped axles if you want to keep the I-beam up front.

    For traditional IFS is a 49-54 Chevy car front end. They unbolt with 16 bolts and drop the truck about 7-8" up front. Some simple brackets on the truck frame to mount the car subframe and hook up the steering and you're done. Gives smaller bolt pattern. Match the rear with an S-10 and you have a modern rear and matching bolt patterns all the way around.

    S-10 is the best fit for a modern frame swap. Requires some minor fabrication.

    Mustang II is OK if that's what you're after, but kind of cheesy around here.

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