Hello all, I am new to the site and found this site while attempting to learn more about my new '53 PU. I am excited to get things rolling as far as restoration and I am still working out the details in my head about what the future for this truck is.
My truck belonged to my grandfather who passed away in January at the age of 94. This truck has been around for as long as I can remember and there are so many memories attached to it. Everything from Fishing up in the mountains to grandpa and me towing a travel trailer on an 800+ mile trip for camping in Oregon. This was the first vehicle, besides tractors, that I ever drove.
Parked in a covered outdoor area in 2006, it has sat somewhat protected from the elements and has been pretty much ignored. When I got to it, we first towed it out of the covered area and backed it into the garage type building so I could see if I could get it up and running rather than loading it on a trailer and towing it home.
First thing I did was drain the gas. There was only about 2.5 gallons in it. It was sure nice of someone to make draining the tank an easy process! Next, I replaced the plugs and wires. I also have new points and condenser but haven't felt like putting those in just yet and I forgot to buy a new rotor. I also partially rebuilt the carb.
I replaced the gas, hooked up the battery and then noticed there was no coolant in the radiator. I grabbed a jug of water and poured it in the radiator. And then watched as it ran out the side of the block! Initially this seemed devastating, then I came to the wrong conclusion that it was a freeze plug. Turns out, there is a drain plug at the back of the block and grandpa had the foresight to pull the plug. I eventually found the actual plug laying on the bench.
I plugged the block, put water in the radiator and went to turn it over. and it didn't turn over. After lots of figuring and testing, everything checked out. The mechanical linkage from the starter pedal was shorting out on the starter wire.
I rebuilt the carb, figured out why the starter wasn't working (short) and determined why I had no spark (coil wire not seated). With the help of a friend, and a can of starting fluid, the truck slowly but surely rumbled to life, with a lot of shaking and a lot of smoke.
I put it into gear and rumbled out of the garage. Once out of the garage, I couldn't resist driving it around grandpas loop driveway. Now, there is part of this loop that is down hill and it was at that point I clearly remembered why one should probably check the brakes before driving a truck that has been sitting for 9 years. While having the pedal go to the floor was a bit disconcerting, luckily I wasn't going very fast and the parking brake worked really well!
So, that brings me to where I am in the process. After I figured out where the brake master cylinder was hidden, I determined that the problem was probably caused by the fact that the brake fluid ran out of the front of the cylinder just like it shouldn't. Today I actually got a re- manufactured master cylinder and can't wait to go find out that I have to replace the wheel cylinders as well. It's all part of the fun! 1953 Chevy 3100