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Frame and Chassis

Frame Cutting – Be Careful!

Friday, November 18th, 2016

General Motors realized that after larger work trucks left the factory some owners would want to lengthen or shorten the side frame rails. Replacement beds would sometime require a different wheel base.

Therefore, as a warning GM painted or etched letters to tell owners the importance of a good, safe connection after the frame is cut. The attached photo shows a 1936 Chevrolet still showing this lettering on the inner frame rail. It is understood a similar warning is also on more modern trucks. Note: Even in the mid-1930’s the attorneys of General Motors were suggesting these warnings be visible to lessen laws suits!


1936 1 ½ ton from a farm in Western Kansas. Still displays the warning after 80 years! Seen just after the cut. Sorry photo does not help seeing the letters!

1939-46 3/4 Ton Rear Bumper Braces

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

Yes, they are different than 1/2 ton!  Though the “C” shaped brace that attaches to the bumper is like the 1/2 ton, the brace from there to the frame is much different.  A curved single heavy brace connects to the frame rail in place of the pair on the 1/2 ton.  Of course, all are of spring steel to prevent distortions when occasionally hit in daily use.

Frame Horns

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

During 1941-46 a unique device was used in the front of both frame rails of Chevrolet/GMC trucks. It was designed to serve two purposes. This forged steel ‘horn’ was a spring hanger as well as a connection for front bumper braces.

These horns are securely riveted into the end of the frame and were designed to last for the life of the truck. Only more serious front-end wrecks will damage them. Usually the whole frame can bend before the cast iron horn breaks. Most were damaged due to lack of lubrication of the shackle pin and bushing. Finally, the pins wear through the bushing and then work on the casting. Finding usable frame horns in recent years have been very difficult. None are being reproduced.

Frame Horn 1
Left side with Frame Horn
Frame Horn 2
Right side with Frame Horn removed
Photos are by Judy and Dave Gaudet email: cohortva@shaw.ca