1956 Chevy Panel
14 July 2008 Update
From Les :
My user name is "Roadmarks" and I have gotten a lot of questions about it. So here is a picture to show its origin. I read "Roadmarks" by Roger Zelazny many years ago and enjoyed the book. The rest, as they say, is history. To bad that's a Dodge on the cover.
We were able to participate in the 1st Annual Southern Stovebolters GABFest on June 14 in Boiling Springs, South Carolina and had a heck of a time. You can see the whole gang in this photo ... I'm about smack dab in the middle (with the hat!)
The next big trip was to the Southeast Old Thrashers Reunion at the Denton Farm Park, just
The Reunion has been going for about 40 years and now covers, and I mean COVERS, about 100 acres with almost anything antique farming and / or antique machinery related.
The picture was taken just as the sun was setting over the Park, up a slight grade from the "engine exhibit area" toward the Midway and is about 200 feet from our exhibit site. We show mostly small engines but we change things around from year to year.
This year, on top of the engines, we had some corn shellers, a hog oiler, a couple of mini bikes, and a Simplicity garden tractor with a sulky. Exhibit sites are assigned and prepaid year to year, so we are always in the same place. We know many of the regulars and make new friends each year.
This year was our 23rd year and we have only missed two years since we started going.
Now the "icky news." On the Friday before we left, I let a 4 1/2" grinder with a 36 grit disc get away from me. I had 39 stitches
When I called my wife Sara, and asked her to come home to take me to the hospital, she went crazy! When she got here, I had a towel wrapped around
my leg. I bled my way to the front porch to wait for her. She didn't show up for a good while, but an ambulance did. Sarah had called them because she had trouble with her car!
So, the current leg update -- The specialist (a surgeon, not a PA) just shook his head when I told him what I was told on the second ER visit. He asked me, "What was the first thing you learned as a child about wound care? Wash it with soap and water!"
I had actually gotten the infection out myself, and I am healing fine. Keeping my leg clean, not covered with goo and bandaged was the answer. Thank goodness. It is really hard to bathe all but one leg! Anyway, all the stitches are out and I'll have an interesting scar.
Things are looking up.
Please pass on to one and all to be extra careful with lock on - lock off grinders and power tools!
18 February 2008
From Les :
I don't have a new picture for the Gallery (just yet). My 1956 panel really isn't in the mood for pictures just now. You know how they are. So, I've sent a neat old Polaroid picture (here's a larger image of the one above) that was taken at the time of the story. I just noticed that the driver's mirror was gone then, too. My panel is about two years from being on the road.
I paid $175 for the panel in 1972. I got it from an Army surplus dealer. According to him, he didn't want the panel but had to take it in a "lot" of trucks he bought. He also told me that it had been a mail truck that picked up over seas mail in Washington, DC and delivered that mail to Fort Meade, Maryland and Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
After I bought it, I drove it all over -- from North Carolina, California, Mexico, Canada, Maine -- that kind of all over. The 235 finally got really sick and I replaced it with a used, rebuilt one out of another truck -- and continued the driving all over. Here is another picture of the old panel when she was on the road for the Gallery. This is Purcelville Station c1979 or so. I was rail fanning the remains of the W&OD RR which is now the W&OD Trail from Shirlington to Purcelville, Virginia.
The panel was built in Baltimore and I was born in DC. It still has the military ID plate on the glove box door, part of which says "Truck, Panel Body, 1/2 Ton, 4X2." Small world, huh?
Then in 1984 I committed the cardinal sin. I loaned it to a "friend" with the reminder that he needed to keep a close check on the oil. I was then out of town for several days and when I got home, I found it parked in my driveway with a caved in drivers door.
When I started it up, it knocked and smoked so badly that it hurt me to back it around behind the house where it still sits.
About a year and a half ago, I helped a real friend put a late rebuilt 235 into a 1951 pickup that had been in his family since it was new. Before we started, I researched the swap on line and that is how I found Stovebolt.com The swap and your site brought back a lot of memories, and I decided that the '56 deserved better then to be a shed. I lurked for a while on stovebolt, then joined. I now have an actual plan for putting the panel back on the street.
I'll do it in stages, starting with the suspension and brakes before I do an engine. It'll probably get a 250 or 292 because I like the oiling and the spin-on filters. It depends what turns up and what the budget will allow. I already have a bell housing that fits the cross member and either engine -- thanks to the help I received on your site. I located all the brake parts and most of the suspension parts locally. I'm just waiting for the weather to break!
I also collect and restore antique gas engines, and my wife collects Hog Oilers. Our first show of the season is the same weekend as the Stovebolt Homecoming at Stovebolt HQ. Keep me in mind, though. When I decide to do something, I usually get it done. I want to put another half million miles on the panel!
Some of the guys on the Stovebolt have been very kind and helpful. Alvin (Achipmunk), Bill (red58), and Woody (Czechman) are the ones who come immediately to mind. My thanks go out to them.
All the best,
You can see 'em better when the leaves are off the trees.
Glad to hear our boys are in there helping you out. That's what we are all here for! (Good-going guys ) ~~ Editor