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Posts Tagged ‘bed’

Stainless Corner Bed Strips

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Stainless steel bedstrips are always a nice extra when you give your bedwood a clear finish. Not only do the strips look good but they retain this attractive appearance despite long term bad weather conditions.

However, a problem occurs when the owner wants corner bed strips in stainless. The original steel corners were welded in place to add bed strength where they joined the bed planks. Unfortunately, welding replacement stainless strips onto the bedsides will always have burn marks. It is just the way it is! Originally, cold rolled steel strips were welded in place at the factory and painted with the bedside.

Stainless does not successfully bond to paint, so the weld spots will always show on the new stainless strips.

The attached pictures show one of the most professional stainless corner welding jobs we have seen. The photos were taken a few days after attachment and before the bed sides were painted. They came by our shop that day for viewing. The owner, Howard Gillis of Stockton, MO is the proud owner of this excellent, evenly spaced welding project. Because they were spot welded in place, only stainless steel metal is on the surface of the welds.

Howard will soon go over these corner strips with a polishing wheel on an electric drill. This will not only put a shine on the welds but will quickly remove the brown burn spots as seen in the photos. The result should be show quality!

You can contact Howard Gillis at hcgillis@alltel.net

stainless bed strip 1

stainless bed strip 2

stainless bed strip 3

stainless bed strip 4

1953-1955 Side Mount Spare

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

side mount spare 1

During the Advance Design truck era, 1947-1955, most all spare tire assemblies were under the bed. Though not always convenient, this kept the extra tire away from the bed box and out of the way.

With encouragement to provide a more easy to reach spare tire, General Motors began offering a side mount unit in 1953. This continued, as an option, even through the later years of the GM step bed trucks.

This new option was added at the factory (not by the dealer) and included a steel frame attached to the left bed side. On the 1/2 ton, not the longer bed 3/4 ton, it was necessary to also have the rear fender with an indention at its front. This indention allowed the tire to be away from the cab and fit parallel to the bedside.

The indention on the 1/2 ton left fender was made no larger than necessary to allow for the mounting of the 6.00 x 16″ original tire. This spacing is so close that the current replacement 6.50 x 16″eplacement tire will sometimes not fit without touching either the cab or fender indention. This contact of the tire against the metal body and fender is not acceptable. The rubbing of a larger tire against the body or fender results in a squeaking noise and finally will wear through the paint. To prevent this, using a 6.00×16 tire may be necessary.

After the 1953 introductory year, it was discovered, the weight of the tire and mount could cause bed side and front bed panel separation (metal fatigue) on rough terrain. Therefore, in 1954 with the introduction of a redesigned stepbed, a small factory bracket was included with the spare tire option. This better held the left front of the bed side to the front bed panel.

An additional item of interest is found in the 1954 Chevrolet truck factory assembly manual. Due to the extra pounds of the added side spare tire and carrier weight, GM added a spacer (left side only) below the rear spring assembly. This helped keep the bed level even though the truck weighed more on the left. See the following Tire Carrier Instructions sheets.

side mount spare 2

side mount spare 3

Bedside Bracket (above)

side mount spare 4

Bedside Bracket Top (above)

side mount spare 5

Bedside Bracket in Place (above)

side mount spare 6

side mount spare 7

Rear Spring spacers for 1954-1959 side mount (above)

We also have two PDF files showing details of the side mounted wheel carrier.

Sheet 2 Model 3104 Click Here for PDF

Sheet 3 Models 3204, 3604, 3804 Click Here for PDF

1940 Tailgate Hinge

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

In 1940, GM began offering a slightly wider bed on their Chevrolet pickups. This width increased from about 46 3/8″ to 48 1/2″.

Of course, the tailgate also required a width change. For some reason GM added a much larger horizontal tailgate roll on the top and bottom. Possibly for added strength. This caused the two hinges to also change. They were now much larger in diameter than the 1939, but this resulted in a new problem! Heavy weight on an open tailgate caused the oversize hinges to bend and split.

In 1941, the tailgate roll and hinge was reduced in diameter, though still larger than the 1939 and earlier design. This new size hinge remained through 1953.

1940 Tailgate Hinges

Solution to a problem: Pure 1940 tailgate hinges are not being reproduced. Even if you have a rare 1940 Chevrolet or GMC pickup with restorable original tailgate, your large hinges may be in very poor condition and not restorable. The solution is now on the market! A non-metal bushing is now available that fits over a 1941 hinge. This builds up the horizontal surface to equal that of a 1940.

1940-1946 GMC Metal Bed Bottom

Thursday, February 11th, 2010

Though Chevrolet and GMC were usually close in their construction during the 1940’s, they were far apart in a few areas. GMC in particular advertised some of their major differences as being steps above the competition. One unique feature for GMC only is the corrugated metal bed bottom on their ½ ton and ¾ ton pickups between 1940 and 1946. Wood planks were not available during these years on their pickups.

Metal Bed 1

Metal Bed 2

The enclosed photos were taken during the bed bottom replacement of a 1946 GMC ¾ ton about 1990. The owner is Ed O’Reilly of Norwalk, N.Y. Ed would not compromise on the originality and thus a new bed bottom is shown being installed. He states it is not any more difficult than adding wood planks and strips. The right angle edge of the bottom welds to the bed sides just like the more conventional corner bed strips of a wood bed.

Metal Bed 3

Metal Bed 4

Metal Bed 5

Truck Beds…Black Wood

Thursday, February 11th, 2010