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Old 08-30-2017, 10:21 PM
 
202 posts, read 1,017,534 times
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Hi,
I'm thinking of possibly getting a 1940's, 50's or 60's Chevrolet pickup truck to drive on a daily basis. Mostly around town, but occasionally on the highway too. If this is possible in our modern day and age, what are some things I should look for (or have done to it after I buy one) to make it more reliable and dependable like a modern day pickup truck or car?
Thank you
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Old 08-30-2017, 10:27 PM
 
Location: PSL
8,224 posts, read 3,494,176 times
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How big is your wallet? For the right money, anything is possible.

Your insurance company will be your best friend... $$$ to put more than 5k miles per year on classics/customs. Grundy on the other hand had more affordable rates for classics and customs with no mileage limits...
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Old 08-30-2017, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Texas
5,717 posts, read 18,909,338 times
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Stay with a mid 50's to 60's model. The issue is Chevrolet didn't have oil pumps in the engines until the early 50's. They used the old cup and slinger method of lubrication previously. You don't run one of those engines very fast if you want to make it where you're going. It all started with the old reliable 235 straight 6.

Frankly, if I were looking for a vintage truck, I'd want a modern engine in it. The old engines are not designed to run on unleaded gas. Valves can be a problem. The old gas contained lead which was in the gas for lubricating the valves. Many depended on the amount of ZDDP in the oil for keeping the parts from grinding against each other. ZDDP has been drastically reduced due to emissions on the newer cars. The ZDDP is suspected of causing damage to the cats which are expensive to replace. You won't find an oil on the market that reproduces the same amount of ZDDP.
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Old 08-31-2017, 12:12 AM
 
202 posts, read 1,017,534 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
Frankly, if I were looking for a vintage truck, I'd want a modern engine in it. The old engines are not designed to run on unleaded gas. Valves can be a problem..
Which modern engine would you chose? ...for example...
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Old 08-31-2017, 12:13 AM
 
202 posts, read 1,017,534 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NY_refugee87 View Post
Grundy on the other hand had more affordable rates for classics and customs with no mileage limits...
Is Grundy some kind of insurance company?
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Old 08-31-2017, 06:06 AM
 
277 posts, read 291,098 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Punchy71 View Post
Which modern engine would you chose? ...for example...
One without a carburetor and distributor?
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Old 08-31-2017, 07:06 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, 615' Elevation, Zone 8b - originally from SF Bay Area
44,551 posts, read 81,085,957 times
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I restored a 1963 Ranchero, then later a 1972 El Camino. Unless a very rare and desirable model, you will never get back what you put into it, so you have to really love it. For reliability I would first do a front disc brake conversion, add seatbelts if it has none, change to electronic ignition, and plan on replacing all soft (rubber) parts in the brake system, suspension and steering, and the shocks. When buying, watch out for excessive free play in the steering, and rusted out floors or even frame, especially if in a snow area. Unless the engine or at least heads have been rebuilt recently, you will have to use a lead additive or your valve seats will deteriorate from the unleaded gas. With something that old, unless you spend $50,000 on a complete resto-mod, expect to be working on it fairly frequently. Things like 50-60 year old wiring under the dash get brittle and crack, and things like bearings and gears were not made with the same modern metal compositions as today. Grundy has restrictions on the use, for example no commuting, and requires it to be garaged. The lack of mileage limit is to allow trips to far away car shows. I just used State Farm as on my other cars and the rates were quite reasonable.
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Old 08-31-2017, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Texas
5,717 posts, read 18,909,338 times
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Quote:
Which modern engine would you chose? ...for example...
I'd be looking for fuel injection and electronic ignition. There are many of the newer engines available that come with everything for the after market installation. The installation is pretty much straight forward, mount the engine, screw the electronics to a cool place under the hood, plug and play. Ford, GM, and Dodge all have engines available like that, some are performance engines, others can be as lowly as a V6. I'd be looking at Hemmings Motor News or cars online for what's available. Might find exactly what you're looking for and in your area.
Cars On line.com: Classic Cars For Sale
https://www.hemmings.com/
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Old 08-31-2017, 01:22 PM
 
202 posts, read 1,017,534 times
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Has GM offered a straight six cylinder engine at all in relatively recent times in any of it's trucks or cars?
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Old 08-31-2017, 08:32 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, 615' Elevation, Zone 8b - originally from SF Bay Area
44,551 posts, read 81,085,957 times
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Yes, as recently as 2009 in the Trailblazer, 4.2L. For had the best straight 6, the 300CI 4.9L used in trucks and the full sized Bronco until 1996.
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