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1958 GMC Fleetside Deluxe

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"Big Yellow"

Owned by Steve Kesler
"Big Yellow"
Bolter # 22611
Kanata, Ontario

Talking about this truck
in the DITY Gallery

16 November 2009
# 2701

More truck pictures in Photobucket!

From Steve :

After two years of searching, I finally found "Big Yellow" in Arkansas. She's a 1958 GMC Fleetside 100 Deluxe, 3 speed column shift, Dana "45" H.D. Diff affectionately known as "Big Yellow". She certainly didn't look as good then as now.

This classic truck was originally purchased by a veterinarian who was just starting out his practice in Oklahoma. He needed something for both work and pleasure. So he was told to order the "Deluxe" package -- which he did.

Fast forward 45 years or so and she was owned by another vet -- this time in Arkansas. This is where my story begins.

After explaining to the owner that I wanted to restore the old truck and not hot-rod it, she became mine!! It was a week long road trip to pick her up and trailer her home.

The restoration work started almost immediately. Over the first winter, I completely dismantled her, spending hours scrapping old tar rustproofing from every body panel. Then, by spring, everything was sandblasted and primed. Over the first summer, I located most of the parts that I thought would be needed for the rebuild.

The second winter was spent reworking the body panels. I had to replace both cab corners, the box front panel and tailgate. Other than that, everything is original.

One of the hardest parts of the restoration was the refurbishing of the chrome "spears" on the box sides. I have come to the conclusion that there are probably not too many Fleetsides out there with them. They were in pretty tough shape but I found a terrific guy in Florida who worked magic on them.

The second summer was spent re-assembling, adjusting and readjusting. By fall of last year, she was ready to roll.

I've since drove about 2000 miles on her this summer. Every minute of work was worth it!! She makes me feel 16 and back on the farm again, which is why I was so specific about what I wanted. The only non-original things about her are under the hood. There was a Chevy 265 - V8 which I swapped for a 235. I also installed disc brakes in front for extra stopping power.

Everything works, including the original AM radio! What a gas!!


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