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1946 Chevy 2-Ton

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  Owned by George Berry
Forsyth, George
06 May 2005

From George :

      This is my 1946 Chevy 2-Ton. It was built at the Janesville plant in July of '46 and spent its working life on a Nebraska grain farm.

      I grew up with the '41 - '46 Chevrolets ... they were a part of my landscape. They were the workhorses of my small community, hauling everything that needed to be hauled. They lasted well into my early adulthood and as I grew older, I appreciated them more and more, not only for their classic looks but for their reliability.

      When I retired after a 40-year career and listed the things I wanted to do with my time, one of my first priorities was to find me one of those great old trucks that have now come to be known as one of the Art Deco series. I searched the old vehicle publications and classifieds and, of course, the internet. I finally found a retired Nebraska grain truck that underneath the accumulations of grain bran, fertilizer and whatever else it carried, seemed to me to be a solid truck with little or no rust. A month or so of cleaning confirmed that.

      I did a little research and found that the truck was assembled at the Janesville, Wisconsin plant in July of 1946. It was shipped as a cab and chassis to the Midwest where it was fitted with an Omaha Standard grain body. It spent its working life on at least two Nebraska grain farms but eventually was sold to a buyer in Georgia who intended to restore it but decided to sell it.

      The truck I had in my mind's eye was a stake body. I removed the solid grain body sides and replaced them with stake body panels of natural wood. I still have to put some marine varnish or other finish on them. I cleaned and painted the frame and understructure of the body and replaced the deck boards.

      The hydraulic hoist still works great. A local body shop that had some experience with old vehicle restoration did a great job straightening the dents and putting on a new Brewster Green / Black finish.

      The original engine still runs great and all I have done to it, other than having the radiator rebuilt, has been to clean it up and paint the valve cover, air cleaner, etc.

      The finishing touch was a new set of 750-20 tires. I opted for them instead of the bulkier 820's because of the look I wanted. I think they give the vehicle a more antique, original look. Incidentally, it took the tire shop almost two days to mount the new tires. The snap rings had bonded to the rims over the years and they like to have never got them separated

      I have entered the truck in a couple of local shows but mainly I just enjoy riding it around my small town and introducing it to a new generation who did not know these old workhorses and re-introducing it to many 60-plus year-olds who enjoy recalling their experiences with these great trucks.

      For many years I had in my mind's eye the Art Deco truck I wanted and now I finally have it!

George Berry
A man and his Bolt


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