Lew and Steve's
1951 Chevy 3604
For years my brother and I have each been telling our
dad that we would like to have Grandma's old truck when it came time for it
to go away. When we heard that the truck was maybe gonna be up for sale
in the future, we were on Dad like 50 years of road grime on an old stovebolt!
To shorten the story, our Grandma ended up giving the truck to both of us. That was September of 2000.
I was planning on leaving the truck in her garage until spring (after 49 years in the garage, what's another 6 months?). I got online and started collecting information on the old Chevy's and couldn't wait till spring to get it home, so home it came.
I rented a trailer and towed it home and immediately started working on it. It had sat for several years in Grandma's garage since running last. The ignition components were replaced and it would run at idle but not rev up. Come to find out the mice had set up shop in the truck big-time.
Once I cut off the muffler it would rev up nicely after 2 1/2 quarts of sunflower seeds came out of the exhaust! There were also seeds and seat cushion padding in the glove box, under the seat, above the headliner from whence they still trickle, everywhere in the engine compartment, under the dash and everywhere else conceivable, including stuck to the throw-out bearing.
Once it would run, it was time to check the brake system. Bone dry! After new master and wheel cylinders and considerable time it would go AND stop. Then came the rear end and tranny leaks. Now the only thing that leaks is the new 235. Dang the main seals! What an addition the 235 is! More power and quieter running for only double the cost of a SBC.
We are gonna keep the truck stock except for the 235 and maybe a set of gears from Patrick's. A new coat of paint inside and out, new bedwood, clean painted frame, new rubber and some extra chrome will bring it into the new millenium. That's a far cry from logging 20 acres (notice the "logging hooks" under the tailgate) and carrying my mom and dad around when they were dating.
Everywhere ole "Julius" goes, people are noticing how rust free and solid he is. After seeing what other trucks look like after a half decade in the weather, we are very grateful for the Grandparents keeping it in the garage since they bought it new in '51.