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AD Chevy Trucks

Chevy trucks

Over 6,000 pictures
Brad Allen has an awesome collection of Chevrolet factory pictures that he has set up from film strips.

This one is on AD Chevy trucks (1947-1955).

Lots of work on Brad's part ... pure enjoyment for you.

See more 1947-1955 Trucks

The Advance Design Trucks


01 October 2014
# 3087

Owned by
Bob Johnson
"Ritchie 54"
Bolter # 35502


1954 Chevrolet COE 5-Window

"The Beast"


More pictures of my old truck

Join the discussion about this truck in the Big Bolts Forum


(The story for this Gallery entry was actually started in 2013 and we pulled it together in pieces, obviously over a long time. Bob is a pretty busy guy, like many. As we know, life doesn't always keep in touch with our day-planner, and Bob had to let the project go. But this was a neat story and an impressive undertaking, so we still wanted to include it. Bob has taken on a smaller project (MGB) still utilizing the skills he learned from the gang here on the site. He hopes to be able to get back to the truck stuff again, as life settles a bit. He knows were he can get answers to his questions - wrenching of any sorts - and he says he's made a lot of friends from the site. We hope to hear from the fellow in Dayton who now owns "The Beast" so its story can continue. Thanks Bob for this much ... and see you on the return trip! ~ Editors)

From Bob :

Once I got the COE back in 2013, I wanted to think through my objectives. I wanted to keep this looking as original as possible but make it a wise investment for the future.

The first question that came up was in regard to the motor. I wasn't sure if I should try and re-build the existing motor (at the time, I was not sure if was a 235 or 261) or pull the engine and put something more current in the truck. I wondered if I would get more value eventually if I have the original engine that had been properly re-built.

I talked to a few Bolters and was convinced that I could easily get over my head financially if I don't watch my step. I'm only trying to bring this back to its original character and performance. If it only has top speeds of 40 - 45, I'm fine with that and the next owner can jazz it up.

I was going to try and bring the existing motor back to life, get the brakes working and then I could decide how far I want to take the sheet-metal and paint. It looked great as it was and most of the work was inside the cab and the bed, both of which I was comfortable doing.

By the middle of July, I had pulled the floor pans and took a leaf blower to clean all the debris out.

The truck looked very complete so far and was in really good shape. I debated a while on whether I could work on everything with the engine in or just pull the engine and work on it outside the truck.

I wanted to run at this properly. I should repair or replace all the ancillary parts: distributor, water pump, fuel pump, carburetor, etc. At that time, I didn't even know if this runs yet, and I have plenty of time, so that made me contemplate pulling it entirely.

The day l pulled the carburetor, I had to laugh. When I pulled in the intake pipe, I found what appears to be a mouse nest or some other debris in the carburetor and partially up through the intake tube.

I took the head off because the engine was seized. Nothing obvious but some rust in the water ports. Cylinder walls were smooth and clean looking. I cleaned the head up to determine the next steps. Soaked each cylinder with Marvel's Mystery Oil and tried to move the pistons a couple days afterwards.

The engine and transmission were still together. Pretty sure the clutch is free. I lifted / jacked the rear end and moved the wheels while it was in gear to try and prod the cylinders into action. It was hard to determine what gear it was in with the shifter somewhat loose.

By the end of July I was getting stumped on finding the leaf spring shackle plate for The Beast. I had two leads from some Bolters and one that already sent me his plates, but they didn't fit. The others seemed to be 1/2 round. Mine was more flat in the center with rounded corners that turn up the sides of the axle.

The profile of my rear axle was square with rounded corners not round as I see on other trucks. I wondered if I had something different than the norm? I definitely have a square axle housing with rounded corners. Another Bolter thought the axle housing may have changed in 1954 and after to the square shape. It may also be more prevalent in GMCs.

Pull me away from the ledge!

Bob Johnson


p.s. I no longer own a truck but I’m not out of the truck hobby. I was very proud of what I did to this truck (and my 1954) and could not have done it without help from Stovebolt.  I’m restoring a 1967 MGB because of the confidence I got from Stovebolt.  I still get on SB every week just to poke around.  I am sure I will buy another truck half way through the MGB and be right back on-line with the frequency I had previously.



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