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Leonardtown, Maryland


1949 GMC 3/4-Ton Pickup Truck

Owned by

Willie Cunningham
Bolter # 14185
Cape Girardeau, Missouri


16 September 2007
# 2059

From Willie :

           My project is a 1949 3/4-ton GMC pickup. I started with a pile of parts that a guy had stored in a barn. Everything was in pieces including things that normally would not be taken apart like the steering column, gauge clusters, rear end, etc. After getting the cab, doors, fenders, running boards, and hood acid dipped to remove all old paint and rust, I did a good inventory to see what I needed besides lot of patience and money.

           All is under primary except for bed side panels. So far, I have found that old trucks are not held together with nuts and bolts. They seem to be held together with money!!.

           I bought a second old truck that had been damaged badly in a tornado that also blew the title away. Got lots of good interior and some driveline parts from that old truck. Still in process of getting the title since the original owner died without transferring title to his kids.

           The first pile of parts did not have a title either. The title process has been a hassle, but should be resolved very soon.

           I updated the engine to a 235 ci from a 1962 Chevy to get away from the old babbit engine. The engine runs great with good compression so did not have to work on it other than points, plugs, plug wires, etc. It still has the original 4 speed and 5.14 rear end despite efforts from friends and relatives to drop a big block and different suspension into this solid old truck.

           This whole project had been on-going for the last two years with limited work done during that time. In the last few months, I have worked on getting cab painted and new wiring harness done plus all of the little bugs worked out from converting from a positive ground 6 volt to a negative ground 12 volt system with alternator.

           Things are moving along better now and my nephew (the body man) is geared up to get the doors, hood, and fenders done so I can complete sooner.

           I am starting to need to get parts assembled so I have more room in my shop. This project has been like a giant puzzle since many of the parts were missing or taken apart more than needed. The maintenance manual and shop assembly manual have been a salvation many times.

           The paint job is a light blue with metal flake that does not show up too well in pictures. It really pops out when sunlight hits the paint. The blue is the same color as the 1967 Chevelle.

           Will keep photos and update as this project unfolds. Would like to have done before I turn old and gray, but my wife says it is too late for that!