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Old 12-20-2017, 06:23 PM   #1
daveshilling
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1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Hey Gang,

This stray truck followed me home yesterday. I was a self-described longbed disliker, but this one got me! Original paint, little bit of aftermarket bondo, very little cancer.

The Good:


Floors are solid!!
Steps are solid!!
window areas all solid!
Hinge pocket seem solid, need to be cleaned out
One corner not rusted through
Original 283 still there, turns by hand when i turn the fan, oil in the block still
5 new spark plugs in the glove box.

The Bad:

Was hit in the drivers front, everything in that area is tweaked / off a bit
Previous owner resolved the resulting door fitment issues with a hammer until the door opened again

The Interesting:
No less than 20 wasps nests in there
Bench seat was replaced with a seat from a school bus and used like that for years
Rubber bumpers added to the front grill (why?) and the dangling horseshoe gives the truck its name.

Plans:
  • 350 / 2004r or th350 depending on whats out there.. UPDATED: Going 5.3 LS
  • Flatout Engineering C4 IFS kit - 84-87 C4 suspension with the small brakes
  • Some sort of 5 lug rear, disc if I can get one, flipped on the leafs. UPDATED: Going Vette IRS.
  • Mustang gas tank out back
  • Replace the school bus seat with a recovered stocker/stock inspired.
  • 15" chrome steelies and white walls UPDATED: Newer Vette front means 16's...Kinda bummed about that actually.
  • Ignore the 5% of rust, scrub the interior a bit with scotchbrite
  • New bed wood, maybe black walnut or burnt oak
  • Be the envy of suburban husbands everywhere when I arrive at Home Depot to pick up lumber.

Please respond with excellent links for me to get this truck on the road safely! I can't seem to find a thread that journals a simple "get er going" process...(I've learned why-nobody ever stops there)
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Old 12-20-2017, 06:26 PM   #2
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

more photos
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Old 12-20-2017, 10:20 PM   #3
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Man that looks like a sweet start to a truck! I think you'll find a few threads would love to have been "get her going" and turned into big snowballs of a rebuild. My truck started with a get-er-goin' mantra and I was able to get the 235 up and running. The next step was much more difficult and that was to get her safely to home depot and back for the envy points.

The problem you may find, as I did, is a truck that sits will have lots of issues with cracked and aging rubber and wiring. Check under the dash and in the door for those lovely nests. I had a giant one behind the dash and it covered the steering column. Awesome!

Rust will also be an issue with trying to get things moving like working brakes, parking brake, etc. How does it look under the hood?

Maybe start with tires? Working headlights? lol
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Old 12-20-2017, 10:29 PM   #4
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

need close up and high definition pictures of your neighbors scowls when they see it hahahaha

nice score! if I were your neighbor I wouldnt scowl!
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Old 12-20-2017, 11:58 PM   #5
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

The bumper guards and scratches on the bumper make me suspect that it was a service truck for a shop, or a service station back when they actually provided service. The rubber covers probably went from top to bottom to keep from scratching the bumper on the car being pushed. We had a section of tire on ours back in the fifties.
As for what to do to it first, the old saying is make it go, make it stop, make it legal.
After that you can mostly pick and choose what you want to do next as far as appearance and comfort items. You have a BBW and the dash hasn't been mutilated in the radio location so that's a good thing.
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Old 12-21-2017, 12:52 AM   #6
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Nice looking start. It is in alot better shape than my longbed was to start with.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:12 AM   #7
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Quote:
Originally Posted by gigamanx View Post
Man that looks like a sweet start to a truck! I think you'll find a few threads would love to have been "get her going" and turned into big snowballs of a rebuild. My truck started with a get-er-goin' mantra and I was able to get the 235 up and running. The next step was much more difficult and that was to get her safely to home depot and back for the envy points.

The problem you may find, as I did, is a truck that sits will have lots of issues with cracked and aging rubber and wiring. Check under the dash and in the door for those lovely nests. I had a giant one behind the dash and it covered the steering column. Awesome!

Rust will also be an issue with trying to get things moving like working brakes, parking brake, etc. How does it look under the hood?

Maybe start with tires? Working headlights? lol
Haha, yeah I'll get some rollers for it tomorrow so it gives the appearance of being a functional vehicle and can be moved.

I figure right off the bat it will need:

Hoses
fluids
brake shoes
anything made of rubber likely replaced
Spark components
new gas tank out back and fuel lines (if im buying a new tank, might as well right?)
Wiring updates/corrections
carb tuned or replaced
PB Blaster bath


and probably 100 more things.
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:27 AM   #8
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Russell Ashley View Post
The bumper guards and scratches on the bumper make me suspect that it was a service truck for a shop, or a service station back when they actually provided service. The rubber covers probably went from top to bottom to keep from scratching the bumper on the car being pushed. We had a section of tire on ours back in the fifties.
As for what to do to it first, the old saying is make it go, make it stop, make it legal.
After that you can mostly pick and choose what you want to do next as far as appearance and comfort items. You have a BBW and the dash hasn't been mutilated in the radio location so that's a good thing.
It would be really cool to trace it back to its roots and find out what it did in its past life!
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Old 12-21-2017, 04:30 AM   #9
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Quote:
Originally Posted by 59chev View Post
Nice looking start. It is in alot better shape than my longbed was to start with.
Thanks! Yeah, the accident in the front may prove too challenging... I dont want to swap out a bunch of body panels, unless i can find some nice OG red ones.

After driving the Jackalope for 4 years, I'm just spoiled now and insist that my trucks be all original paint and body.
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Old 01-10-2018, 03:03 PM   #10
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

No new truck photos yet, but I picked up a (supposedly) running 283 from a Chevelle pretty cheap, and its rated up to 220 so thats an easy kick in the pants for Lucky without breaking the bank. It also came with extra 327 heads (which I wont use, anyone in Norcal need 327 heads?), an extra 327 intake, and an Edelbrock 1404 500cfm carb.

Carburetion is a whole new world for me, by the time I got a drivers license everything was fuel injected.

"Doing it right" and having everything machined, hot tanked, etc. is great, but I think I'll be dropping this in as-is and seeing what happens. If it's garbage, that just means more chances to learn!!

Are there any reasons I should try and fabricate side mounts instead of using the front mounts? Is it worth the trouble?
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Old 01-17-2018, 01:23 AM   #11
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Took apart the front brakes today and even though the steering wheel turned the wheels with no trouble, I couldn't move the spindle by hand easily. Is this a sign that the kingpins need replacing? I assume that a truck sitting out in a field may need this done anyways.
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Old 01-17-2018, 11:55 AM   #12
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Replacing the king pins is a good idea if the spindles don't move freely. It will steer rather erratically with them stuck.
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Old 01-18-2018, 09:16 PM   #13
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Thanks, I'm going to go ahead and order the kingpins to go along with freshening up everything else. Learning so much!!

So, i've been comparing the prices to redo the drums vs. a disc brake upgrade. Here is what I have so far:

Drums- 90
new lines- 25
new wheel cylinders-40
new master-100
shoes-35
roller bearing upgrade- 95
Total- $336

Vs. a disc conversion kit, which is ~$700 from my local shop and includes everything plus a booster.

OR

$400 without the booster/master cylinder locally, and I supply my own master cylinder.

Is the booster necessary/worth it?
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Old 03-25-2018, 07:49 PM   #14
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

As all projects do, plans for mine have grown. I decided to go with the Flatout Engineering C4 IFS, and I've gathered the necessary Corvette parts.

I got stalled with the crossmember rivets and planned to burn them out, but I figured out a safer way to deal with these...

Removing Frame Rivets:

1. Cut a + in the rivet head with cutoff wheel on a grinder
2. stick a freshly sharpened cold chisel into some vise grips to keep your hand clear.
3. Beat the hell out of those rivet heads with a 3 pound hammer until they shear off.

Now many people were able to just punch out the remaining half of the rivet..but not me. Lucky wants me to earn everything.

4. Drill a small hole until you pass the depth of the riveted on material.
- Some of the rivets were not easy to reach directly with a drill. I still drilled these out. I drilled a hole at an angle, and started the small pilt hole closer to the edge of the rivet.

5. Using progressively larger drill bits, I drilled out most or all of the rivet from the crossmember/leaf perch. You can tell you have reach the bottom of the hole left from the smaller drill bit because the bit spins faster suddenly.

6. Using a punch clamped in vise grips, beat out the remaining section with the 3 pound hammer.

I got all rivets out this way! Super stoked that I didnt have to cut any out with a torch.
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Old 03-31-2018, 07:09 PM   #15
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Plans always seem to evolve and grow, as does the cost ha ha

looks like a nice truck to start with though.
looking forward to seeing it getting done.
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Old 03-31-2018, 07:15 PM   #16
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveshilling View Post
As all projects do, plans for mine have grown. I decided to go with the Flatout Engineering C4 IFS, and I've gathered the necessary Corvette parts.

I got stalled with the crossmember rivets and planned to burn them out, but I figured out a safer way to deal with these...
EVERYONE here (but me) had a helluva time getting factory rivets out. I ground the heads off completely flush then whacked them 3-4 times with a like diameter punch and a BFH. Hard part was seeing the rivet when all the metal was fresh ground.

Grinding the head off from below was a little painful until we covered ourselves head to toe with clothes/towels. But after that, it went fine. (Mostly my brother-in-law did the grinding and I did the whacking from above!)

I used the big diameter punch in about the middle of the picture.
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Old 05-20-2018, 11:33 PM   #17
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Spending bits of time here and there to get Lucky ready for the Flatout Engineering C4 IFS Crossmember.

After hours of wire brushing, rivet removal, grinding, etc., I was finally able to trim down the frame to accept the boxing plates. The bottom of the frame flares out to accept the stock crossmember, but it needs to be flush to accept the crossmember.

First I positioned the boxing plate to determine where it will sit to be 90 degrees from the top of the frame.

Next I used scotch tape to lay out a straight line that has a high contrast. Pulling the tape tight ensures I get a clean line to cut on.

Then I used a cut off wheel to remove the extra. I started by making a shallow score along the line, since less cutting meant more control. I could then go over this shallow cut with multiple passes, creating a nice groove for the wheel to follow. Once it was deep enough, I could run the wheel straight through the groove and cut off the piece. I don't own a plasma cutter so I'll have to keep making messes with the cutoff wheel.

Question for anyone who has done this IFS before... should I notch the boxing plate and frame to accept the steering rack notch before or after I marry the plate to the frame? Without a plasma cutter it seems like it would be a huge hassle once its on the truck.
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Old 05-20-2018, 11:39 PM   #18
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

I also found a 5.3/4l60e/ecu/harness/pedal for $1k and its waiting patiently to cause my budget to increase.
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Old 07-01-2018, 09:09 PM   #19
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Got back into the garage finally to get the trans cross-member out, clean up the frame some more, and start figuring out where this Flatout C4 cross-member needs to go.

In case anyone is removing the trans cross-member with the cab on, here is how I removed mine:
I used a Reciprocating saw with a long blade to cut out the bulk of the cross-member. Then I trimmed the remaining pieces with the recip saw. I couldnt cut it clean off so I cut through most of it, then used a pry bar to bend them out and off. It wasn't easy. Then I had enough space to cut off the tops of the rivets closer to me with a cut off wheel. More bending and hammering and i could get the remaining pieces to pop off of the rivets, using the cutoff wheel when needed. Then I could easily cut off the rivets for the leaf spring perch and hammer that down and off the frame.


QBRacing is building his ahead of mine and he went with 28.75" from the frame end to wheel center on his 58/59 flatout front install... Does wheel size make a considerable difference in this measurement?
QBRacings build thread

I also need to get these boxing plates figured out, as they seem to box well behind the crossmember and not very far in front... just to box around the c notch that I need for the steering rack will require some trimming most likely. Is there a structural reason for this? Also how do yall add frame paint behind the boxing paint? doing it before might contaminate the welds... doing it after seems like a huge pain.
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Old 09-28-2018, 12:06 PM   #20
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Crossmember located and tacked in.

Update:

Despite this being a weekend job, my double, triple, quadruple checking combined with being intimidated has stretched this out a bit.

At some point I chose to start learning from mistakes again and dove in to get the front suspension set up.

I boxed up the crossmember and trimmed the boxing plate so it could be moved forward and box around the c notch completely. I didn't like how it looks partially boxed, and the boxing plate ending halfway doesn't add as a much strength in my mind.

I got the wrong crossmember from Don at Flatout, but he and I found a solution that was the most cost-effective and would save us time... I find a 96 suspension setup instead of the 86, and he's going to send me a rear kit and shave a few bucks off, so.......

We are going full 96 Vette! I got a front and rear setup for $650, and I need to sell the 86 front now.

Frame is boxed, notched for the steering rack, and crossmember is tacked in.



Taking one last look to make sure the wheel is where I want it before the crossmember is burned in.



This photo reminds me that it will eventually look like a truck again!

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Old 10-01-2018, 05:12 AM   #21
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Dave

Looking good, strong work!!!! How did you establish ride height?
Going to be using Flatout C-4 frnt and rear. one my 57 GMC just as soon as I can get my shed done, you know living life has it way of getting in the way.

Keep on keepin on

NC

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Old 10-01-2018, 03:35 PM   #22
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

I was also a non long bed lover. I donít have any references but maybe I have a couple inspirational photographs of long beds. These two Have changed my mind.
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Old 10-01-2018, 06:30 PM   #23
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

Whose blue truck is that Dan? I've see it numerous times, in photos, and it's really nice.
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Old 10-05-2018, 09:19 AM   #24
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

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Whose blue truck is that Dan? I've see it numerous times, in photos, and it's really nice.
No idea. I found it on a Google image search and was so impressed by it that I saved it. There is also a dark red or burgundy long bed that is very impressive as well. Somehow Iíve managed to lose that one. I THINK this blue is 60ís Chevrolet Marina blue, but of course thereís no real way to know.
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Old 10-21-2018, 09:01 PM   #25
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Re: 1958 Apache Big Window Loooooong Bed "Lucky"

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Dave

Looking good, strong work!!!! How did you establish ride height?
Going to be using Flatout C-4 frnt and rear. one my 57 GMC just as soon as I can get my shed done, you know living life has it way of getting in the way.

Keep on keepin on

NC

Thanks Nut Case, I've been trying to keep it moving. I really want this truck driveable by next summer!

Ride Height is pretty much set in stone with this kit unless you do more fabrication. I leveled the crossmember with the front 2" lower than the rear.
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