1947 1-Ton 3800 Panel School Bus
26 December 2005
Hi. Now that I have used your forum several times and found it to be full of friendly and helpful people, I though it was time to add my monster 1947 1-Ton 3800 Panel School Bus to the Stovebolt Gallery. What a great website!!!
It is hard to believe that it all started with a small red VW Beetle in 1991. It was the first of 16. Once infected with the rusty hobby, there is no therapy to heal it (I really tried and was dry for almost three years).
Once I moved to the U.S., I found out quickly that you get a whole lot more for your money if you buy American (Beetles up here in Minnesota are either 'bottomless' rust buckets or terribly overpriced).
Once I saw this 'monster', a 1947 1-Ton 3800 Panel Truck with an original School Bus Conversion from The Winter Weiss Co., Denver Colorado, on www.carsoup.com, I just could not resist. It was parked in an old barn on a small farm. It ran, drove and almost everything worked. The farmer had used it to haul produce to the local farmers' market. He had it parked on the lonely farm road with a "For Sale" sign and it had not sold (no wonder). So negotiations were easy, delivery included.
My wife was sick in the hospital at the time all this was going on which really made things a lot easier (I still have to hear about it). Two hours after she came home, the truck arrived. I know I should feel bad -- but I just had to have this truck!
So far I have driven it to the UPS store and to work several times without problems (about 100 miles in total). Then one day it started stuttering and would not idle anymore. I still drove it back home, but since then it does not start. That day I cursed the rig and tried to sell it. Luckily nobody bought it.
If I had as many hundred dollar bills as I have plans, that would be great. First I want to get the engine running nicely. Then I plan to do something about the speed, either a ring and pinion set or an overdrive. And once the monster does 60mph, it is time to give the breaks more bite and myself a seatbelt. Oh, and a nice new paint coat (yellow of course). And finally a camping interior with beds, fridge, heater, stove, and storage space.
The truck actually fits in my single car garage. All I have to do is screw out all the light bulbs in the garage (to gain height) and have two people sit in the back of the truck. Then it fits through the door and has about one inch of space on top and in the back left.
When I bought the truck, the seller mentioned a few spare parts that he would put in the back of the truck for delivery. When the truck arrived, I found a complete rear axle, a complete front axle, a four gear transmission, four good break drums, and three hubcaps in the back.
Drivetrain: 235ci 6-cylinder inline engine from 1956, 4-gear transmission on
the floor with granny gear, probably 5.14 rear end.
Measurements: overall length 227" or 18'11", overall width 76", overall height 84".
Wheel base 137", front axle width 57", rear axle width 62", rims 18", tires 8-17.5"
Length wooden floor 112", greatest cargo length 119.5", greatest cargo width 62", smallest cargo width 48", greatest cargo height 50". Greatest roof length 138", greatest roof width 58".
Bolter # 9466
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