1940 Chevy Canopy Express KC
From Dennis :
This is my 1940 Canopy Express KC -- all original. I bought it at a farm auction in Wisconsin in October 2009. My wife asked what I was going there to get and I told her I was looking for an old truck. She warned me not to bring one home. I didn't - someone brought it home for me the next day.
This is how the old truck looked when I bought it. It had been in a barn for over 20 years and obviously was in rough shape. The tires were flat but the fellow was able to pull it up onto his trailer.
When we got the truck home, we had to air-up the tires and they held long enough so we could pull it off the trailer with my 1935 International.
The person who owned it previously was a painter. Years ago, the truck was used for spraying barns. That long hose on top of the truck - well, I'm not sure what that was for.
The first thing I did after I got her home was to pull the gas tank. It had been sitting with nothing in it and I figured a bunch of crud was in there. I had trouble with my 1958 Jaguar with a similar circumstance. So I pulled and cleaned the gas tank. I installed a new fuel pump, points, condenser, plugs, wires. I replaced the key switch, changed fluids, and put in a battery. The truck started right up and sounded great.
There was no exhaust system on the truck, so it was really loud. I put new exhaust on it but it had no brakes. So I went through the brakes (rebuilt master and wheel cylinders, new springs shoes and hoses). I added turn signals and now I can drive it and it runs like an old Chevy.
After I got it running, I started on the body work. As you can see in that rear end photo, the tailgate was a mess. The bottoms of the doors were rusted out, too.
I am a part-time carpenter and the body work was a challenge. For the tailgate, I used the old one as a pattern and fabricated a new one. I had to build a wood frame that would fit into the opening, open and close.
There is a guy here in Illinois (Cary Hopperstad of Hopperstad Customs Hot Rod Shop) who does sheet metal and he advised me on a few things to do. This guy is incredible. He re-did a car (a 1955 Corvette) for a guy who thought it was destroyed. He built a frame and re-built the car from the frame up. He's a true artist with a street rod shop. He can do anything for anyone at any price.
We put some good tires on it. It's original and low gear so 40-50 mph is top end on it.
I have more body work to do, but I am keeping warm in Florida this winter.
About that International - it's a 1935 International C-1 Panel truck (here's another photo pulling the '40 off the trailer). The exterior of the truck is all original. Under the hood, I have a 1967 Chevy 6 cylinder with Powerglide and a Ford Torino drive-line. It says "The Good Old Days Carpentry" on the doors - which I do now - but I am a retired firefighter.
On the 1958 Jaguar, well I bought a few cars out of Chicago that were not worth restoring. So I got this '58 out of Arizona and had it shipped home. That is a unibody car and it is the most rust free car for being that old. There may be two rust spots on the doors. It is also original looking on the outside but it has a 350 Chevy with Powerglide under the hood. .
i also had a 1936 Chevy pick up but I sold it some time ago and used the money to go to Disney world.
There is an auto auction in Wisconsin (some stuff goes incredibly cheap) that is about a two hour drive for me. It's quite a ways up there and I didn't want to come home empty handed - even though I have to face the little woman. After 43 years, she's use to it. When we got married, I had a Model A. I have had lots of different vehicles over the years. They've come and gone. I don't have room in Florida and I don't want to fill up my space in Illinois. I use to have a 18,000 square foot building until a few years ago. The city bought the land and I ended up selling most of what I had. I'm always looking for another building!
I really enjoy the site and check Stovebolt everyday!