1956 GMC Carryall 4 x 4
May 2009 / Ken added a second truck -- a 1957 Chevy Dairy Queen Panel -- to the Gallery ~ Editor
04 June 2008 Update
From Ken :
Hello all. Here is just a note about my finally finishing my 1956 GMC Carryall (or, as some call it, Suburban). It took so long to do this truck partly because GMC original parts are hard to find.
My project is what is known as a restomod. I made sure the body and interior are close to original. I have all the correct knobs, radio, speaker, lighter, seats, emblems, lights, bumpers, grille and all that. [ Interior pix ]
The running gear is a newer Chevy 4 x 4. The tilt steering is from the same newer era. As you get older and rounder, it helps to breath while driving. (The seats on these Task Force trucks don't go back far enough!!!)
I put in a 454 with headers and a TH350 with Nostalgic shifter. I did all the welding / fabrication for the steering box, shocks and so on necessary to fit the modern stuff to the original frame. I also did every window myself including the windshield! That's eleven windows counting the vent windows.
The energy and nerve to do all this came from folks on the Stovebolt and some other web sites. I took classes to weld and being a retired mechanical design engineer, I knew a little about making special brackets and such. But the encouragement and information came from you all. Thank you!
I am writing a "book" about how I did it with pictures and part numbers. I wonder how great it would be to do it again now that I know what to do and what to buy. I figured and measured for many long hours and dreamed at nite on how to solve various problems. I did have some help from Czar.
I've started to cruise around in the GMC now and it's really fun to feel young again. Never had the time or money to build anything nice. Of course, I had a lot of cars and truck over the years I wish I still had: 1956 Chevys, a 1934 Dodge coupe with a rumble seat, a 1966 GMC Carryall and so on. Back then, they were cool but just a way to get to work (after fixing them all weekend). Then, later in life, I had some new ones.
It was nice to test my old "skills" with old GM / Chevys. The greatest cars and trucks to work with, almost all engines and tranny's and parts fit each other from the 1950's to at least the late 1980's, 6 cylinder or 8 cylinder. No other brand comes close.
Thanks to the Stovebolt Collective and their untiring effort to keep this great resource going. Wow, must be a crazy job to handle.
All I need to do now is put on the vintage roof rack and modern spare tire winch on my 1956 GMC Carryall. Then I will move on to my 1971 Blazer.
Thanks to my wife Darleen for the understanding and the money. If she only knew....... how much.
What a great job on the write-up Ken. I'll have to add "please try some Coke and chocolate before starting your write-up" on the Submissions page! There is NEVER too much information! And, I think I have said WOW over and over, each time I look at the truck. What a beauty! As a matter of fact, we added this beauty on the Tech Tip that was written by Barry Weeks, "What's my truck worth?" ~ Editor
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18 May 2007
From Ken :
Here is my 1956 GMC Carryall 4 X 4 conversion "restomod" [ pix ] . She has a 454 Big Block Chevy engine with modern running gear. Right now I'm putting it back together after a body off restoration.
I have done all the fabrication and fitment myself. I also did some patch repair and drive train installation.
The truck was in primer up until just a little while ago. I just got her back from the paint job. She's Nassau Blue and white. So, now I'm in the polishing stage -- sure is a LOT of chrome on a GMC!
My 11 year old Grandson Ryan has helped me. He wants it when I die. I hope I am alive to give it to him. It has taken about six years (off and on) so far.
Now that I'm retired, I'm gettin' 'er done! She should be ready this fall. And hopefully not running into too many more not-helpful people in the business.
While Ken was waiting for all these answers, and in between some wrenching, he wrote a great Tech Tip on fixing stress cracks and tears. Check it out! ~~ Editor