John Lewis'

1953 Chevy 3100 Pickup Truck


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16 August 2007
# 2022

From John :

           Hello all! I am submitting some pictures of “Baxter.”  He is a 1953 Chevrolet 3100 pickup truck that I secured three years ago. In the 1950's, the Philadelphia Fire Department used the 1953 Chevrolet pickup as part of its Special Services Division. They responded to major fires with tires, batteries, extinguisher powder and tools.  It was an awesome sight! The tire on the side was what caught my attention as a little kid, and at that point I said, “I gotta get me one of those!” Well, over 50 years later, Baxter the 3100 is now among us. I purchased the truck on eBay from a gent in Oklahoma. It seemed like a great idea -- which it was.  

           However, the truck was a 30-yarder to be sure. The engine was super, but nearly everything else had to be rebuilt. Of course, I had to repaint it the Philadelphia Fire red color -- Chevrolet’s Victory Red. We replaced everything underneath, the clutch, the transmission was rebuilt, new front end put in and the original Huck brakes were replaced -- that will be replaced again soon. The body guy was a fanatic -- and only great.  Any “waves” were removed, parts were replaced, media blasted, and then painted with urethane primer and paint.

           Here's a couple more pictures for you ... from the rear here's a good look at the bed; under the hood and then a good look at the engine.

           Baxter has been to two shows and won two trophies.  I am a university professor and firefighter and I have a modular set up to make Baxter a Philadelphia Fire service truck. We have some magnetic signs for the door sides for the Philadelphia Fire Department (see picture) and put a magnetic mount on a rubber pad on the roof for the red light.  Most of time he goes out as a show truck, but when he is a fire truck, he looks great.   

           Oh, and why “Baxter?”  Well, we like cats and there was a commercial for a cat food that had one named Baxter in it. The rest is history.  

           Lots of help has been given from the Stovebolt, and much more will be needed since we need to upgrade the Huck hydraulic brakes and tighten up the steering.

           Hope you like the pictures!  Feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions.

John Lewis
Bolter # 7455
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Home of Baxter, the 1953 Chevy Pickup

           Wow what a great looking truck!  I am sure you can get lots of help with those brakes on here! ~ Gallery Gal

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