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1954 GMC 2-Ton





        My brother is Jeff Mosley (he was also at the Reunion and probably will be factored in to the Stovebolt Singing Sillies next year ~ Editor). He's lurked on the 'Bolt but not singed up to my knowledge.

        He has a 1948 GMC 1-ton that I gave him for our birthday (we share a birthday nine years apart) a couple years ago. He gave me my first truck -- a 1986 S-10 so I figured I owed him one. Plus it was a good way to get him going in the hobby.

        Well, we'll have to get his story in here then, too. Well see what kind of yarns he can spin about you. Should be fun! ~ Editor

 

 
 

"The Mayflower Truck"

Owned by Steve Mosley
"KCMongo"
Mongo's Garage
Bolter # 335
Independence, Missouri


13 October 2008
# 2456

From Mongo :

       A funny thing happened to me on the way to the Stovebolt Reunion.

       With just a week to go before the Midwest All Truck Nationals truck show and the 4th Annual Stovebolt Reunion (in Kansas City), the 1953 1/2 -ton was still blown all apart and in about three different barns. The 261 for the 1953 2-ton was sitting on my garage floor, and the 1947 cab was still in primer. I realized then that I wasn't gonna have a truck for the truck show. (Duh, what's up with thaaaat? ~ Editor)

       About the same time, Rick "BigSix302" Wagner < 1952 GMC Suburban > sent me a Craigslist link for this 1954 GMC 6400 2-ton former Mayflower Van Lines truck. The price was good, and the ad said Riverside (which is where the truck show is). So I shot the guy an email.

       Turns out he was a great guy and was selling the truck to help finance an engine rebuild for a Willies Jeep he's been working on.

       After a follow up call, I decided I'd come check it out / maybe make a deal the Friday we kick off the truck show.

       After loading up all the stuff for the truck show, hooking up my trailer, and loading up my chains, binders and other truck hauling stuff, I headed over to the Park. My helpers started rolling in and helping unload and setting stuff up. Ed "DaOzTinman" Hoover showed up and unloaded his pickup from his big GMC and bent the bed (see Ed's story).

       With everyone finishing up the setup, we had things rolling right along. When a lull presented itself, I decided to make the run two short miles over to check out the truck. John Milliman and Scott "48bigtrucks" Ward agreed to come over and help me check it out, make the buy and load it up for its short trip to the Park.

       At this point I'll pass this tale on to John, who spins a better Yarn than I..

From John ( (see the Adventures with Mongo picture story)

       Well, I can't exactly remember how Scott Ward finally convinced me to go with them and actually pried me away from the show field, and got me into Mongo's truck. It HAD to have been a convincing argument.

       "Hey," Scott came up to me saying, "Wanna go look at a Big Bolt Mongo's thinking of buying?" Like a shot, I was in the truck and ready to go!

       I do remember Scott looking around, wondering where I had disappeared to. He finally noticed me in the back seat of Mongo's truck, buckled in and looking like the ole farm dog who's found the truck door open. I think all I actually heard Scott say was "Wanna go look at a big Bolt?"

       So we were in the truck. After only one missed turn, we found ourselves just up the street, looking at what I thought was a pretty decent appearing, original condition 1954 2-ton cab and chassis.

       I'm not sure if Mongo was in control of himself at this point -- he was drawn out of the truck and pulled toward the '54 like an alien abductee is mesmerized by the pulsing red light and drawn toward the glowing saucer. I say this knowing full well that I could be describing any of us when we find trucks.

       Scott and I hung back a little. I took pictures; Scott was silently evaluating the truck. Mongo was a gonner. A truck addict about to get his overdue hit.

       Mongo and Scott went at the truck like pros -- sizing it up like buyers at a horse auction. Big radiator this, shroud that, 2-speed something else. And then they opened a cab door ... suddenly, rays of heavenly light sprang forth, the beautific strains of an angelic chorus filled our ears... "Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!"

       "Oh man," was all Scott Ward could manage before dropping to his knees in respect. Mongo was totally enraptured, enveloped by light and being drawn towards heaven by cherubs ...

       "What?" I asked, plaintively.

       Suddenly, the music stopped, Scott snapped out of his reverential daze and Mongo dropped suddenly back down beside me. The heavenly light rapidly dissipated like a candle in the wind...

       Scott very patiently looked at me with his famous "Why does God torture me with you?" look.

       "It's got a Unison seat."

       Cool, I thought to myself. I can honestly say that I've never heard of that before, much less seen one. But now I know of a little known option or period aftermarket seat for our Big AD trucks.

       I think Mongo had already decided to buy the truck before we had even left the show field, but finding several boxes of pieces, parts and other really neat stuff packed neatly in the can (on the Unison seat -- they even saw it under the boxes of stuff!). So there was little to do after completely going over the truck other than settling on a price and hauling her away. Mongo did that while Scott and I started on the logistics of loading it on the trailer.

       Simple, eh? Well, for the most part, it was. Except that geography prevented us from simply backing the trailer up to the truck and winching it on.

       To load the truck, we had to move it forward about 10 feet, turn it 90 degrees and roll it to the top of the hill where the trailer was (about 200 feet). Luckily, the seller had a really nicely restored 8N, so that wasn't too hard. Scott Ward even scored the first "drive" in Mongo's new Bolt by steering.

       Mongo, this not being his first rodeo, had brought an electric winch, which he used to great effect. Scott drove the truck onto the trailer while Mongo provided the oomph (via the winch). I provided direction and checked the ramps.

       Then the fun began.

       Ever watch three guys, who all have a lot of experience loading and trailering old trucks, attempt to work together to load and chain a vehicle? They each usually have their own preferred method. Not that any other method is "bad" per se, it's just that what works, works. And if you try to change that up, it puts a guy into a mental tizzy. Harsh words get said, binders get thrown, lawyers get called ...

       It actually didn't get that bad. Scott and I actually asked Mongo how he wanted it done. Mongo was still yapping it up with the seller, so Scott and I devised a plan where, because the trailer just barely fit the wheelbase of the truck, the back chains had to run forward and the front chains went to the back. Nothing brilliant, it's just what you have to do with a big truck and a little trailer.

       And instead of fighting over it, we actually were clowning around a lot. Which is even all the more commendable when you consider what we had been up to the evening previous and how late we were up doing it...

        On the way back down the hill, the same two guys on a front porch saw us and waved (they didn't wave the first time...). And Mongo, being still in a euphoric state, stated, "They must like the truck!" Indeed.

       Back at the show field, we had her unloaded lickety split. But heck, before we'd even undone all the chains, we had drawn a crowd! I think they were messing with me, because everyone who checked over the truck commented on the fan shroud and ... you guessed it...

       "Wow, didja see that Unison seat???"

       And that's fine. I had the last laugh. I'll turn it back over to Steve for the grande finale...

Back to Mongo

       Yeah, we got back to the show and unloaded the truck. After I parked the recovery vehicle, I had to get back to the business of the show. My wife Lisa was not aware of this new arrival to our collection. John made up a Stovebolt truck identification placard and put it on the truck . Well, he thought surely Lisa would NEVER notice. Gosh ... first thing when she gets to the show field with the boys, she's over there checking out this yellow tru .... what???!! HER truck??!! So, I was in hot water. But I was really busy with show stuff and didn't notice the scald marks ... until later!

       See more pictures on Mongo's Garage site.

       Sunday morning when things calmed down, Rick "BigSix302" comes over and asks me "So can we make it run?" He looked as excited as my four year old asking if he can go to McDonalds. I told him to have at it if he wanted to play around with it.

       Next time I swing by the truck, there's about five of our club members crowded around it and they had the carb off and torn apart on the fender. Rick made a run for some carb cleaner and some gas.

       In the process of tearing down the carb, someone leaned over the fender and knocked off one of the tiny parts. Rick and company scoured the ground looking for it with no luck. So the call comes across on the radio for me to swing by the truck.

       After being told about the situation, I headed over to the Swap Meet to look for a carb. While looking through the various ones for a good one, the call came that someone walked up and spotted the tiny piece from like six feet away. Ok, we're back in business.

       The guys get the carb back together and back on the truck. Next to work on fire. After much tweaking, it's determined that it's got none.

       I pull out the box of parts that came with the truck and the guys find an extra coil, points and condenser. After the usual amount of testing, it's determined that the condenser is bad. It's replaced, points are gaped, and some fuel is added. The key is turned ... the started stomped on ... she fires .... and runs!

       I unfortunately missed this first run as I was somewhere else in the Park. I return and find out the good news. We hook it back up and fire it again. We strap the gas can up to the firewall, close the hood and my brother and I took my first drive around the Park. She drives like she should but smokes pretty bad. We just tell the crowd were foggin' for bugs.

       The hydraulic brakes don't work but the trans brake stops it fine. A couple weekends ago I hauled her up to the farm and drove it around some more. After a brake system rebuild, she should be a very usable truck.

Mongo

-30-


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         Never too many Stovebolts :a 1953 Chevrolet 1/2-Ton :: The Mongo's Garage Tow/Recovery Rig ~ a 1953 Chevy 6400 2-Ton :: a 1955 First Series COE 5100 :: a 1954 GMC 2-Ton former Mayflower Van Lines truck. I'm sure we'll see more and more as time goes by! ~ Editor