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Mechanicsville, Maryland

 

1944 2.5-Ton 6 x 6 GMC

"Lee"

Owned by

 

James Allen
"Lassentrucks"
Bolter # 16509
Janesville, Lassen County, California

22 October 2007
# 2097

From James :

           Hello. I found the Stovebolt site while researching a purchase I am working on (a 1958 6500 series dump truck). But I wanted to submit my first baby which I bought in Redding California, some years ago. The guy had it registered as a motor home! This truck even had a 55 gallon drum in the back for "water."

           It formerly belonged to the Shasta County Civil Defense. The horrible orange was an addition by the Civil Defense. I have managed to strip some of the orange back to the old OD paint and can almost make out some of the white lettering. Supposedly this truck had something to do, or was involved in, the building of the Shasta Dam, but I never looked very far into that.

           The truck was to be / is going to be restored to semi represent the truck my Father drove in the 4th Armored Division in WW II. Dad's was a 4 x 6 with canvas top and open bed carrying jeep parts for the division. The truck was named "Lee" for my Mother, and this one is, too.

           Back when I was in College in Redding California, for what ever reason, I got a hankering to restore an old car. So I started looking in the local rag and looked at a few old cars that I could not get excited about. This came up and it was love at first sight. It took a little bit to get the brakes up to working order, but she ran like a top. I often would drive it to college where I was studying to become an aircraft mechanic. Everybody wanted "rides." She moved with me from job to job, until a landlord said enough and I drove it over the Sierras and parked it at home.     

           This truck has a machine shop body missing the correct tooling (that I am looking for by the way) but it still has most of the black out curtains, glass, etc. I have driven this truck many times around northern California but it has been sitting for many years now awaiting my attention.

           In this photo, you can see my communication trailer (still hooked to the back of the 1944 CCKW) formerly from Reno. Here's a better picture of it. It's an A. J. Miller Auto Cruiser trailer K-34D. It was made in 1941 and was used by the civil defense and civil air patrol in Reno Nevada. It came from the Susanville Airport via my Brother. At present, both are full of various treasures (miscellaneous military truck parts and electronics). I collect aviation and military items. In fact, to the left of the truck (or the right side of the picture) can be seen part of a Bell 47 M*A*S*H* helicopter sitting on top of a 1940's Dodge frame. And to the left in the picture are stacked three bomb carts!

           Aside from these two, I have another fun toy, even with a beer keg on the boom (not my idea). It is a Hughes Keenan army warehouse crane truck. It is a VSH-10 early 1970's vintage. This has been run but last time we tried, she would not start. The open trailer was an army trailer that would have had a tank (water or fuel) on it (see photo).

           I will get the dump truck and probably another flatbed, I think a '54. Also in the deal may come a 1950-something panel truck. A friend passed away and these were his construction trucks. Also in the works is a 1945 1.5 ton 4 X 4 that someone welded a backhoe to. I'll keep you posted!

           Just more of "toys."

           It was interesting to see the look on the State Farm Insurance guy when I drove it up to get it insured! He asked how much it weighed. I said "Well, it is a 2 1/2 ton."

           When I moved it one year down I-5 in the California central valley at a top speed of 45, I would get a lot of thumbs up and honks. One guy thought it was a prison truck! That trip I pulled into a motel lot for the night and hit the brakes. The line broke spewing brake fluid on the hot engine. I jumped out from the cab engulfed in smoke. But since I let off the brake, no more fluid sprayed on the engine and the smoke cleared. I have not yet repaired the jury-rigged line we made so I could keep going. Same kind of thing when I was climbing the Sierras by the Feather River and the fuel pump went out. So, I just bought a cheapo electric one and ran a rubber hose into the tank and kept on trucking.

           I would really like to put the equipment back into the truck -- generator, lathe, drill press, etc. I have a good idea of what was in there but coming up with the right size and period is a problem.

Thank you,

Jim Allen

         James has quite the stash: a 1944 2.5-Ton 6 x 6 GMC (along with it comes a bunch of interesting goodies); a 1951 GMC 1-Ton Panel Truck; a 1954 Chevy 2-Ton Dump Truck; a 1951 Chevy 1.5-Ton Flatbed. ~~ Editor

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