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Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
#1375238 Sat Aug 29 2020 12:12 PM
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 6,862
W
Master Gabster
I would like to know what it is like to drive your truck on an extended trip. Good and the bad when you are relegated to basically 55 miles per hour or less. Thanks.


Ron, The Computer Greek
I love therefore I am.

1960 MGA Roadster Sold 7/18/2017
1954 3100 Chevy truck in the Gallery
2017 Buick Encore
Pix on Photobucket
Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375255 Sat Aug 29 2020 02:42 PM
Joined: Oct 2006
Posts: 11,766
D
Extreme Gabster
Mornin' Ron. I've never driven Old Blue on any really long trips. The first day I got the engine back in her and before I got
the front clip back on, I took her out for a ride round the block to see if all was back in the right place. That felt so good
I turned west and went all the way out to Clinton, IA on the the big river and from there back to Byron and back into Sandwich.
I think her maiden voyage was somewhere around 200 miles that day. All with out any front sheet metal on her.
But that was as you posted mostly at around 55 mph.
52 Pete and I took his stock Bolt down to KC one year. In fact we had breakfast with you one morning at the motel. That trip
was again, at about 55 all the way down and back. That must have been what drove Pete to hack into it, and In it's present
state it'll do twice that 55 but there's a MoPar driving it there now.
55 does seem sort of slow when you're used to running 75 or 80 on the Interstate but it does give you time to enjoy the scenery.
Denny G
Sandwich, IL

Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375260 Sat Aug 29 2020 03:31 PM
Joined: Apr 2007
Posts: 791
L
Shop Shark
Denny is correct, going 55 gives you time to enjoy the scenery. As I have posted before, I drove my '51 1/2 ton from AZ to the Reunion in Kansas City and back; I think that was 2015. That is 2400 miles round trip. I had an absolute blast. I tried to stay off the freeways/interstates as much as possible but I found when forced to by circumstance it was not as bad as I thought. As long as the traffic was not too bad, drivers would notice the old truck and move over to the left lane and go around without a hitch. The only problem I had was in the KC area with the old freeways where you would change and get dumped into the fast/left lane where everyone was going 80 mph.

Every time I stopped for gas or a rest people would come out to talk to me. I had a gas station owner in the TX panhandle that pulled out pictures of his Advance Design truck he had years ago (he also sold ethanol free gas so I made sure to stop and say hello on the way back). I had a flat tire (problems with flat tires is the subject of another post) and the owner of the shop, who was at least in his seventies, came out and asked what the heck I was doing. When I explained I was having a blast just cruising across mid-America, he just shook his head in disagreement. Apparently, he liked automatic transmissions, and air conditioning. The truckers were apparently talking about me on the CB as I got lots of waves from them, even on-coming traffic on the 2 lane highways.

Lack of air conditioning, lack of turn signals, lack of decent music (all I could get on the AM radio was talk show stuff) are some of the negatives. Running into the wind at 55-57 mph with my stock driveline meant the vacuum wipers didn't work real well, however, I quickly found that I could let up on the accelerator for a half second, and I would have functionally "intermittent" wipers.

I drove primarily during daylight because of the lack of signal lights, so starting early I was ready to quit by supper time. One day I covered just over 550 miles and felt pretty good, not much more tired than if driving a modern truck. When you think about how America moved itself about the country 70 years ago, what I experienced was not unusual and not that different than today.

Kent

Last edited by Lightholder's Dad; Fri Sep 04 2020 02:06 AM.

1937 Chevy 1/2 ton
1942 Chevy 1/2 ton
1947 Diamond T Model 509
1951 Chevy 1/2 ton
1950 Chevy COE Model 5700 ~ "Barney" ~ And more pix
Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375295 Sat Aug 29 2020 10:21 PM
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 4,864
Shop Shark
I too, did the KC trip once in my panel. Truckernix came along for the ride. It was just over 1000 miles each way. It was a blast. The year before I took my panel, I met Ned Messerschmit (The Ned, RIP) who drove his stock 1 ton panel with a 216 all the way from the east coast. He was the reason I took mine.

Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375301 Sat Aug 29 2020 11:17 PM
Joined: Nov 1995
Posts: 4,656
J
Unrepentant VW Lover
Leo,

That was quite a trip that year. For those not familiar with it, Truckernix traded seats with my rider (amtrakjoe). We scared ourselves silly on the exit into KC to go to Mongo's to unload my haul for that trip ... I don't think Truckernix will ever accept an invite to ride with me again ... Joe definitely got the better deal on THAT one.

Anyway, Ron ... after some experience with my unmodified 1-ton (before the 261 upgrade), I came to the conclusion that long trips in unmodified antique trucks are why they invented trailers... Those trips are fun for about the first 30 minutes ...

smile


John
"There is a life about to start
When tomorrow comes..."


'49 Chevrolet 3804

Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375305 Sat Aug 29 2020 11:56 PM
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 9,029
Grease Monkey, Moderator General Truck Talk & Greasy Spoon
I bought a very nice trailer a few years ago and hauled the ‘48 Suburban streetrod to the reunion. Then I hauled the ‘62 C-10 to KC twice. Got ragged on all 3 times for not driving them up from the OKC area. I wholeheartedly agree with John’s position. I was able to enjoy driving around KC and not feeling beat up after a long trip.


Martin
'62 Chevy C-10 Stepside Shortbed (Restomod in progress)
'47 Chevy 3100 5 Window (long term project)
‘65 Chevy Biscayne 4dr 230 I-6 one owner (I’m #2)
‘39 Dodge Businessmans Coupe
USAF 1965-69 Weather Observation Tech (got paid to look at the clouds)


"I fought the law and the law won" now I are a retired one!
Support those brave men/women who stand the "Thin Blue Line"! Hug a cop!

Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375307 Sun Aug 30 2020 01:41 AM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 4,402
2
Shop Shark
My 20 year old 3/4 ton diesel still hauls the mail.
Sometimes a rough ride when not loaded. But put another 12'000 pounds behind it on a hot day.
Crank up the AC, then get the job done.
https://i.imgur.com/pYxfEuL.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/OXNgdHi.jpeg

Don


Of all the things I've lost in my life, I miss my mind the most!

1967 GMC 9500 Fire Ladder Truck
"The Flag Pole"
In the Stovebolt Gallery [stovebolt.com]
More pix on Photobucket [s893.photobucket.com]
'46 2-Ton grain truck
'48 3/4-ton grain truck
'50 2-ton flatbed
'54 Pontiac Straight Eight
'70 American LaFrance pumper fire truck.
Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375315 Sun Aug 30 2020 03:17 AM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 21,063
H
Boltergeist
We took the mother of all road trips back in early 1980- - - - -central California to Tennessee, a little over 2500 miles. My wife got the privelege of driving the stovebolt- - - -a 59 Suburban. I drove the Cadillac! Now, before the lynch mob grabs their ropes, there was a reason for the driving duties shaking out that way. The old 1970 Fleetwood Brougham was towing an 18 foot 3-axle trailer with virtually everything we owned onboard- - - -a little over 10K pounds on the trailer axles. It was a handful to drive, and I had years of experience driving 18 wheelers. The Burb was towing a 72 Datsun station wagon, and both vehicles were crammed full of clothes and other stuff so there was only room for a driver. The Burb was running a 307 V8, a SM-420, and a 3/4 ton Dana type 60 rear end from a 1970 GMC. When the Arizona cops made me buy an over-width permit for the trailer axles they weighed the rig- - - - - -16,700 pounds! The Burb with the towed vehicle behind was probably somewhere in the 6K range.

2500 miles- - - - -the Caddy got 5 MPG and the Burb got 10- - - - -drive 100 miles, fill up both vehicles and press on! The last thing I packed into the trailer was a freezer full of food and 20 pounds of dry ice, with the power cord hanging out the back. Every motel we stopped at, I ran an extension cord out the window and plugged the freezer in. All the food made the trip frozen rock solid! That was quite a road trip! I won't say what I did just before crossing the California state line near Mojave- - - - -but it expressed my opinion of that part of the country in a very explicit way!
Jerry


The murder victim was drowned in a bathtub full of Rice Krispies and milk.
The coroner blamed the crime on a cereal killer!

Cringe and wail in fear, Eloi- - - - -we Morlocks are on the hunt!
Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375318 Sun Aug 30 2020 03:40 AM
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 9,447
5
Master Gabster
My favorite Stovebolt-related experiences have been the two 1,000 mile trips to Illinois in a bone stock '52 3100. Interstate the whole way. For the total of 4,000 driven virtually straight through except for gas and a few 20 minute power naps, the only issue that I ran into was the generator. I had to park on a hill for the night, waiting for the sun to come up so that I could figure out what was wrong. The brushes on the generator had stuck, resulting in lack of contact with the commutator. I removed the brush cover and reached in with a fingernail and snapped the brush springs, and pushed the truck down the hill to start it, and the ammeter showed that the battery was being charged, So down the road I went. 400 more miles to go.

Re: Question about driving an unmodified truck on a long road trip.
WE b OLD #1375625 Wed Sep 02 2020 07:20 PM
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 753
B
Shop Shark
Just took a 600 mile, 3 day trip in our '60 C10 (see driving reports), some freeway, some 2 lane, some gravel & some rough forest service roads. Last fall we went about 1,200 miles up into B.C., both were anniversary trips. In the past few years have driven it to South Dakota, norther California several times & several 500 miles round trips to Portland area. Drove to Mass. & back to Oregon about 25 years ago, had no overdrive on that trip. Of course this is a rig with coil spring in the rear & torsion bars in the front. Solid axles & leaf spring at all 4 corners is lots rougher on the body!


BC
1960 Chevy C10 driver 235 T5 3.73 dana 44
1949 GMC 250 project in waiting
1960 C60 pasture art
G.M dealer tech since 1980 & counting
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