A 'virtual garage' of antique Chevy & GMC trucks from around the World
1959 Chevy Apache 3800 1-Ton Panel Truck
22 October 2007
From Seetz :
Here is our 1959 Chevrolet Apache 3800 Panel truck. We are in Austin, Texas until November 18th and then around November 20th, we'll be moving to the Golden Triangle area in Mississippi.
I have met every previous owner of this truck in person! (That's pretty cool ~~ Editor) The truck was sold new to the University of Texas on December 22, 1958 by the Chevrolet dealer in Lockhart, Texas (they're still around). It was used by the Geology Department to collect rock samples. There is a hand-winch between the bucket seats to haul rocks into the truck. It is likely this truck never went any further than 50 miles out of Austin, Texas. My neighbour (who's 80 years old) used to work in the UT Geology Department. He said the University sold it to a guy for $1300. I met him yesterday. He owned it for three years. He realized he didn't have enough time for it. So he sold it to a classic motorcycle salvage yard for $1700.
On December 23, 2006 I bought it for $2000, and it's been my daily driver ever since.
Having a daily driver that's 50 years old can be a challenge. We've started restoring the bucket seats. We have to do them one by one. Otherwise, we don't have a driver's seat. I have to plan repairs, and try combining things (like when I replace the headlight adjusters, I also replace the grille bolts, because then I can reach them better)
It's pretty much stock, except for the alternator upgrade. Some wires and the like have been replaced. Not everything stock as all repairs are done while keeping the truck running. Plus, there's not an unlimited amount of money available to replace with NOS parts.
The truck runs a 235, 4-speed, and has about 42,000 original miles on it.
Our current project is re-upholstering the seats, and there's more planned. Our aim is to have the truck in perfect condition in about 10 years from now.
A little note on the photos: if you ever wondered how big a 1959 1-ton panel truck is, the "green shed" in the background is our house.