01 November 2015
1959 GMC 9310 Canadian- built Shortbox Wideside Deluxe
From Darcy :
Hi Bolters! I'd like to share with you my family-owned 1959 GMC Shortbox Wideside (see footnote * below) Deluxe. We've had this old truck since 1973.
This is a rare truck PLUS it was factory built with a 235 / 3-speed, radio, chrome gauge package, heater controls, passenger visor and door panels, along with the exterior "chrome" trim on the box side and around the windows. This was a "businessman's truck" and a far cry from a working farm truck.
My Dad brought this truck home in 1973 / 1974 and we've had it ever since. I helped Dad sand it down for the (ugly) brown paint job. I drove it to high school around 1980. (Parking lot stories left out on purpose.)
My sister and brother-in-law did a partial lead restore with fresh brown (gag) paint in the '80's but it went back to Dad around 1990 and really hasn't had anything done to it since, except a rear end change to a higher set of gears. The original differential is going back in it to accommodate the taller 16" tires.
It's still a daily driver but needs some cancer repair. The cab has never been off the frame since it was assembled at the plant.
My high school buddy has offered to do the work and am extremely honored to have him do it as he has restored many before and I know his work is top notch!
I found a local deal on five Coker 7.50R 16 107P wide white wall tires and 16" 3-clip rims to really finish it off.
I've decided to restore it for a couple of reasons. One, my Grandfather and my Dad and I have had a real appreciation for original restored vehicles ... especially the rare ones. The stables have had, or still do, a 1930 Chevy 3 window coupe, a 1935 Chevy Standard partial restoration, a 1953 Chevy, a 1969 442 and the '59 GMC.
Second reason is it's very rare and I'd hate to see this one butchered.
Third, it's so very close to original now; it's not much to take it back to original.
I sent out the radio to get it fixed.
Putting the gas tank under the box but will leave the existing filler cap. Carrying a spare, standing up in box, will not be the best but will have to do unless I can figure out another option like fastening it to the bed wood laying on its side.
We took the truck into town for its first work ... a new exhaust system. Dad sure liked his stacks and was a little sad to see them go. He just HAD to BRRAAAPPPP them in the shop after he drove the truck up on the hoist! haha
My friend, Al did a fantastic job, as he's been bending pipe for 30 years. He offered to dry fit various mufflers for us so we could hear it before the final install. Dad and I really liked the Red Devils R4406 muffler / resonator so we decided on them. Dad said they were quieter than his stack straight pipes behind the cab that he's had on since 1973-ish -- quiet enough he could even hear the radio while on the highway. Now that's saying something!
The rims are going to get painted Omaha Orange right away so that Ken can mount the Cokers and then run the truck around town to ensure ride height clearances are good to go. Stuffing a 31" tire in the wheel wells is going to look fantastic! We just want to ensure we can drive it home after the truck is completed.
CAUTION NOTE: I made the mistake of stacking my Coker tires (see the pictures) and as a result, I've carbon printed some white walls with the black rubber tread edge. Damn!
*Footnote: After getting my initial Gallery story done, and doing some more research, I received some valuable of information about my truck. I contacted George at Vintage Vehicle Services. He reported back to me that my truck is 1 of 2,697 GMC shortbox trucks (both Stepside and Wideside included) that were produced in Canada in 1959 and that the official name description of my truck is "GMC Custom Wideside Pickup." Here is a copy of the
Vintage Vehicle proof I received from them.
PROJECT BUILD JOURNAL!
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