1948 Chevy 2-Ton
Peanut is our cat. He is a bit of a character, and very entertaining. I bought an adoption certificate from the local SPCA for my wife one Christmas. The next summer, we adopted him. He was the last kitten from his litter and was with his mother at the time. The sign on the cage said “The runt of the litter” and the attendant said he wasn’t very active. They were wrong on both statements. That little kitten grew up to be quite an active cat, and he weighted in at 14 pounds last year at his check up.
He has a couple of peculiar characteristics. He loves to drink out of the tap, which I have seen other cats do, but he also likes to wash his hands after he exits the litter pan. We keep two water bowls in “his room.” One he likes to drink out of, the other he washes his paws. He doesn’t do it every time, but quite often.
Here is a link to Peanut washing his paws .
I think he has some Maine Coon Cat in him. He has the fur tuffs from between his toes, and he makes what I would describe as chirttle sounds.
He is strictly an indoor cat, but this summer he jumped up on the window ledge and feel through the screen. I was sitting nearby and the look of panic on his face was priceless. I quickly ran outside, not knowing what he might do in this strange new world. He literally slithered along the ground until he reached the back deck and I was able to catch him before he freaked out.
It took him about a month to hop up on that window ledge again.
My favourite idiosyncrasy that he has is when he attacks my wife’s butt. At times he gets a bit energetic and bounces off the wall. If Gloria happens to walking by, she becomes his target of choice. He relentlessly tries to bite it.
My least favouite is if he turns on my hairy legs.
A tip for other owners of cats that live in-doors: When you go to the market and they offer you a box, take one. Your cat will love tearing it to shreds and they are thrilled with the strange odors that are not native to their territory.
From Paul :
Work on my 1948 two ton has been going slow and steady, just like me. I have been concentrating on the brakes, steering and wiring. The brakes and steering I understand; wiring is always a challenge for me, even with all the little numbers taped on the wire and a corresponding instruction sheet. All those little electrons flying through the wires are like magic. The wiring harness I purchased has plastic covering. I sort of wish I had gone with the original cloth. But getting it running is the most important thing right now.
Small things can make me scratch my head. Like when my wires to the voltage regulator that came on the harness seemed like two feet too short. It’s because my voltage regulator was on the fender and not on the firewall. I was all set to splice longer wires, but opted for moving the regulator. Better choice I think because most of the guys on the Stovebolt forums said that’s where their's were located. The part I hate the most about this job is trying to work under the dash. I haven’t installed all of those wires yet. I am just about done with the engine compartment and will do the dash last.
I decided to take the generator out and have it checked out. Dang those things are heavy. Especially when you are head over heels in the engine compartment. Well, I dropped mine. I thought, "No big deal" but it was a rebuilt Borg Warner and it had a cast iron pulley that I unfortunately took a chip out of. I didn’t think it would be a big deal just to go to a parts store and get a new generator. Well not that easy, and ones on-line didn’t come with the pulley. Fortunately, the auto electric shop I took it to had an old pulley. However, I wasn’t through abusing that generator.
I have been using molasses to take the rust off of parts. I find it works great on cast parts, and not too bad on metal parts. I did my wheel cylinders in it. When they went in, they were rusted pretty badly, but when they came out they looked sand blasted.
I have two tubs of molasses and water mixed up for rust removal. One is just a five gallon bucket. The other is about three or four feet in diameter. I didn’t have a piece of plywood big enough to cover the top. So I used two pieces butted against each other. I foolishly had put some parts on the cover too close to where the two pieces of plywood met and I bumped into the vat. The generator took a quick bath in the molasses. I immediately dunked it into a bucket of water then gave it a really good cleaning with compressed air. Seems no worse for wear. One concern I have using the molasses is the neighbourhood bears. They would like nothing better than to dine on about 25 gallons of watered down molasses. They have broken into my trash shed twice. Once they disassembled the board and baton door. The second time, they bit through the locking bolt. The bolt is now a 3/4” one. Let’s see them bite through that one.
I bought reproduction headlight pots because one of mine was rusted right through on the bottom. They are close to original, but I will drill out the wire outlet. It is smaller and I want to put the cloth wire loom on. Good excuse for me to purchase a standing drill press.
The front end was pretty easy except for taking the backing plate bolts off. I did have to use a little heat to remove the ones on the driver’s side. I heated them up, let them cool, then put the castle nut on backwards so that it had a flat surface and pounded on the bolts to get them out. The king pins were amazingly easy to remove. I had read that some guys use the weight of the truck to try and drive them out. Some guys take the axle off and have them pressed out. I just had to remove the lock bolt and caps. I then soaked them with penetrating oil and took a five pound hammer and an old socket. They came out without too much pounding. I took the spindles to Ken’s Vintage Auto in Chillwack to have the bushing installed. I noticed that the old bushings didn’t have holes for the grease zerks. No wonder they wore out.
I decided to tighten up the steering while I could get easy access to the box. I was prepared to rebuild it, but after using the adjusting procedure in the manual, I think I have very good steering in the truck. The hardest part to the adjustment is getting the bottom thrust screw and lock nut moving. I ended up taking a punch to one corner of the lock nut to get it started. Once it was loose, it came right off. For the thrust screw I had to make a tool. [ tool pix ] The thrust screw has a concave slot, and very little room between it and the the frame. So I took an over-sized flat washer that fit the slot fairly tightly. I bent it 90° in the middle and welded that to a bolt that was big enough for me to get my fist around it for leverage. It worked great. I got the correct pulling force on the wheel using the specs from the manual. However, I did use a fishing spring scale. But I figure it must be at least in the ball park.
The backing plates on all of the brakes had some rust pits [ pix ] on them I decided to sandblast, fill and sand the plates. It was a bit of work, but I feel good about the outcome. [ pix ] I painted all of the parts with Zero Rust.
Now that the school year has started and I am back to teaching, I don’t have much time to work on the truck. I purchased a marine heater to try to stop the condensation that can cover everything in the cab during our cold, rainy winters in the Fraser Valley of BC. The engine has so much grease and oil all over it right now, that I don’t worry too much about it corroding. The sheet metal has a badly applied but solid paint job on it. I am trying to decide what I should do with the fenders on this truck. It looks like it might have had lights on the fenders that collected water and let holes that have been very poorly repaired. Okay for now. I hope next summer I can get myself on the road with the beast.
I have just about finished my Oliver Super 55 tractor. It is at Everson Equipment in Everson, Washington to have its rebuilt diesel engine installed. I hope to build a flat deck maybe with a beaver tail to haul the tractor. I just hope I get these projects done soon.
More pictures in my Photo Share.
09 January 2007
From Paul :
Hello. This is actually my second Stovebolt ever. My first was a 1965 Fleetside that I bought for $250 in 1971.
I like tinkering with old vehicles, but I am the greenest of shade tree mechanics. Each project is schooling for me. I plan on retiring in five years and will have lots of time.
My new truck is a 1948 2-ton with two speed rear end. It was an old fire truck from Brookfield, Wisconsin. It has about 34,000 miles on it. I bought it to haul my 1955 Oliver Super 55 tractor to local shows. I will try and get some pictures of the Oliver for the Alternative Gallery. Unfortunately, it sort of looks like the scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz after the flying monkeys got him. The engine is in Everson, Washington getting rebuilt, and I have the hydraulics and steering apart. Don't worry it will be back this summer. I have a bet going.
I live in BC and most of the trucks I see around here have not withstood the wet climate very well. I had planned on finding one on the prairies one day, but the cost and time in hunting down a good truck seemed impossible. So when I saw this one listed on eBay, I sort of jumped at it. It was only about three hours away in Seattle.
My wife will tell you I am not too patient when I get my mind made up to buy something. Sometimes I end up overpaying for convenience ... but what the heck.
I think my expectations and the sellers description were both a little off the mark, but I am still happy with the truck. It was suppose to be turn key, but I drove it home in the rain with no wipers! It does start every time, and better yet, stops! The steering needs looking into. It has a mind of it's own. It has a new paint job, but one that looks better from 30 feet. At least it will help keep it protected.
Being a fire truck, it has some extra holes on the roof that were filled with little stalactites of bondo, which a mig welder would have done a better job. It also has a patch on one of the fenders that I would have put metal in. Guess I will have to do a proper restoration later.
Here is the cab. It has a new seat. I have to figure out all of the knobs. The truck should have been painted red with black fenders, at least the engine compartment would match. Notice the rubber hose with the pipe fitting on it coming out of the fire wall? The previous owner told me to hook up the vacuum wipers there. Turns out there wasn't a vacuum motor under the dash [ dash pix ] , and that hose seems to be a drain for the cowl vent. Sure did suck well -- more ways than one.
Now I need a wiper motor. Have to admit it looks nice from the front. Still needs a deck. You can't see the window I cracked slamming the door shut! Darn it. The doors had a habit of flying open going down the road. I made the mistake of slamming the door with the window down. Bad idea. Cracked the glass. So don't you do it. Learn from my mistake.
I will be very interested any tips, pointers, sources that anyone has on this truck. My first step is to get those wipers working so that I can get it through inspection. Kind of hurts to just drive it around the property.
I need a shop manual to start with. I am just getting to know this beast. Hope to have it for many years to come.