Hey all. Just picked up a 1951 Chevy 3100 5 Window. 216 Motor and 3 on the tree. The drivetrain is all original and I believe the truck has never been restored. The painted door logos are original to the 1st owner. The truck Runs, drives, stops and everything works. My plan is to keep the patina and drive it the way it is. It will be a good around town driver. My first step is I need to give the truck a good service. Oil, trans, rear end, grease, adjust clutch, adjust carb, timing check etc. Looking for any tips or tricks on these trucks for basic maintenance. I’ve only ever had v8 vehicles. This is my first “Old” truck and vehicle with mechanical everything. Also wondering what oil is suggested for the engine, trans, and rear end. Hopefully the pics uploaded. Located in CT. Thanks in advance!
Thanks for the compliments. I went onto Rock Auto and found all the mechanical parts I need for a good tune up/ service. What oil do you suggest? I see some people using 10w40? With or without zinc? Also what size oil filter 5” or 8”? I’m thinking I won’t even paint the frame. Maybe just fluid film it to preserve it. Same with the other patina’d parts.
I run Rotella 15w-40 in my 261. I researched that as well and found several that run this grade in Stovebolt engines. It doesn't look like your engine has an oil filter. Is there a canister mounted anywhere on the drivers side? My previous 216 did not have a filter, which was very common, so frequent oil changes might be a good idea.
If you're going to drive it, why worry with painting the frame? Just keep it out of the salt. Personally, I would clear coat the exterior, rebuild any of the brakes/front end/rear diff/steering that it would need to make it safe and reliable, and drive it!
-Patrick 1953 Chevrolet 3100 261 / 4-speed / 4:11 / Commercial Red
Deve's kit is not HEI. It may well provide spark without points, but HEI, it is not. In my opinion, based on a miserable experience with a Pertronix unit, there are only two ways to go with providing spark for a Stovebolt engine. 1) Original points. 2) An actual HEI distributor. (They are available ready to install from some vendors.) Carl's 2 cents. (Actually the Pertronics incident cost me a couple hundred bucks. I am lucky it didn't catch my truck on fire.)
Nice truck. Hope you don't modify it too much. Keep er stock. My '50 is a daily driver with lots of patina. I personally have had great luck with stock ignition. I also use Valvoline VR1 30w high zinc racing oil for it's 235. Gearbox and rear end gets Valvoline 80-90. I average 1,500 miles annually. Keeps on running. So will yours. Keep er simple. You can always do mods as you feel needed.
Craig's '50 Chevy 3100 5 window My truck If I'm not working on my truck or VW camper, I'm fishing with the wife or smoking Salmon.
That truck is a time capsule which I personally would not alter from what you have right now. I would even leave the ratty cardboard door panel as it is. The only things that I would do would be to do everything that I could do to find and original seat with a usable seat cover. They are out there, maybe not many. I would also replace the spark plug wires with original type. The pre-made reproduction ones offered by a few of the vendors are really nice and look original. You have a gem. I'm really happy to hear that you want to keep it as it came from the factory. I suggest that you get a Factory Repair Manual. There is one which covers '48-'51 which will be a great help for you to get this truck all up and running like it should. There are lots of guys on this site who would be more than happy to help you along the way. The best way to access them is through the forums specific to what components which you are working on. Carl
Exactly my plan! Just did new points, cap, rotor, wires and a vacuum advance. Still gotta check the timing and valve adjustment. Hopefully I can get to the drivetrain service this week. Truck runs great and has so much history. It’s a joy to drive it as is. I picked up a manual which has a wealth of info. The seat and wood bed is my next project. Not sure what I wanna do with the floor. The rusted and worn metal looks really cool.