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1955 First Series 1/2-Ton Deluxe

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Leonardtown, Maryland


Owned by Andy Forelli
Bolter # 12032
New York
08 April 2008
# 2295

From Andy :

          I have to tell you that I simply love the site. I have been a regular since my kids and I began our project in August of '06.

          This is their very first project vehicle and they are having a blast working on it. I am letting them do a lot of the work [ pix ] , so it has taken us quite a while to get it going. However, we have made a lot of progress over the past several weeks and are looking forward to actually putting it on the road this spring.

          Our project is an ex-Old Navy display truck, a 1955 First Series 1/2-ton deluxe cab.

          Someone I know owns a small salvage yard. He came by late on night in August of '06 with the truck on his wrecker. I fell in love with it and asked if it was for sale, as my kids were bugging me to build a car with them. I had built several cars when I was younger, but my last project was about 20 years ago (a sweet '66 Mustang coupe).

          This friend told me that his landlord was giving him some heat about having so many cars in the yard and he told me, "If you take it now, you can HAVE it."

          He backed it up into my yard and the rest is history.

          This truck was removed from an Old Navy store and parked in its parking lot for about two weeks before I got it. The vandals got to it and broke the windshield, stole the passenger door, dented the grille, dented the driver front and rear fenders and a couple of small dents in the cab. It was destined for the crusher when my friend found it and brought it by my place.

          "Old Navy" trucks are the trucks that were used in the Old Navy clothing stores as display trucks. I searched out and found the people that built them for the clothing store are in my area. They built over 900 trucks to be used in the stores. The guys that built these trucks for Old Navy were real butchers and torched a lot of things off the frame and even the torque tube. When I got mine, it was a rare thing to have one from a store. Now, Old Navy is taking them all out and they are turning up on eBay a lot.

          All four of the kids (ages 14, 12, 11, and my daughter is 6) work on the truck with me teaching them how to do it. They like working on all aspects of the truck (even gooey stuff), but like to work with anything that throws sparks especially, like the torch and grinder. [ Complete with safety gear ] They are well-supervised and don't do anything that is too heavy or dangerous. [ Working on the radiator ] This project is desigend to teach them HOW to build a project car [ minor adjustments ] and how to work on antique autos. [ Cleaning off some muck ] It will not be a trailer queen, [ scraping rust ] but a working truck to be driven [ a little practice behind the wheel ] and something they can continually work on while they gain skills and know-how. [ Working under the truck ]

           The truck is nearly ready to go on the road.

          The red truck you see in behind the garage is the parts truck that materialized literally around the corner from me. We used the frame off the parts truck and did a cab swap.

          I plan on doing another AD pickup once this one is on the road. The difference is that the kids will do all the work on the next one.

Thanks for a great site,

Andy Forelli


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