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Old 06-01-2011, 05:36 PM   #1
monolith
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Project "Rekker"




I've been having some problems deciding the direction of my 66 3/4T GMC. I lowered it a bit, took the bed off to clean it up and re floor it, put some headers and glass packs on it to make it feel more like a hot rod, got a 60 hood to throw on to make it feel more like a custom, and now I found a Holmes 440 wrecker bed for sale for dirt cheap.

I knew I had to go get it. I loved that "wrecked wrecker" rat rod truck,though that's way more extreme than where I'm going with this truck, but I think this will set my truck apart from most- and I may eventually be able to tow my projects around, and maybe be able to drag a couple more home when the time's right.

So- Here's the truck as I loaded the bed and drove it home(slowly) and parked it before the weekend. (The bed is secured to the frame with cable come alongs, it's ratcheted down pretty tightly, as precarious as it looks and made the trip without budging.) The hold down tabs were hanging up on the front spring perches, I couldn't get it higher with my hi lift jack.(I had to load it by hand, the seller blew a hydraulic hose on the wrecker that he was going to load it with.) I just jacked and cribbed, jacked and cribbed for 2 hours, then had to borrow his torch to cut some unnecessary bits of metal out of the way, then back the truck underneath, and lower it on to the frame. He tried to hire me on the spot to work at his garage, but it's a bit far. I'm still considering it for the experience, though.

Today the bed's coming off and getting set on stands in the back yard.

My plans as of now: Dual rear wheels, 60 hood, lighten the bed some by cutting the sides off and installing lighter gauge side sheet metal. maybe doing the same to parts of the bed (wheel wells and area outside of the frame) MAYBE some lightening holes in the booms (I'm not ever going to use this as an actual heavy duty rig- I don't think my truck frame could take it, so this is more of a "theme" build.) It looks like I may have to bob about 6" off of the back of the frame to center the rear wheels in the wells,or maybe just relocate the wheel cutouts in the sides to match if that won't look too funky.
I'll probably need a front sway bar.
Maybe route the exhaust up behind the cab and plumb in some flame throwers.


It's got a Dana 60 4:56 rear, 250, SM 420 trans.
cut front coils, I restored the rear suspension to stock and have a pair of "helper coils" that I'll be reinstalling as well.

As usual, any advice, suggestions, warnings, information, resources, hooting jeers, cash donations, or beers are very welcome.

Any diagrams or resources on how to get a PTO hooked up to the bed will be appreciated- I've searched the web, but can't find much info.

I also need a sling and some arms- anyone have any lying around?

Thanks for your time,

Baz
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"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger

Last edited by monolith; 06-02-2011 at 02:14 AM.
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Old 06-01-2011, 05:45 PM   #2
jonzcustomshop
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Re: Project "Rekker"

I like it.
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Old 06-01-2011, 05:57 PM   #3
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Re: Project "Rekker"

I dig it!

Man, there are times I actually miss driving a tow rig. If the money didn't suck, I might never have gone back to computers.
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:15 PM   #4
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Looks like a great project....I'm looking forward to seeing it come together.
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:38 PM   #5
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Re: Project "Rekker"

do it! gotta see this
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Old 06-01-2011, 06:43 PM   #6
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Re: Project "Rekker"

You'll need a roof mount Unity spotlight. I have a pair of 64-66 pillar mount spotlight brackets I can donate. A logo will be required to paint on the door. Wish I was closer to home, I have pictures of Holmes wreckers from 1963.
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:21 PM   #7
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Got the bed up on stands, started grinding the sides with a 7"wheel- bondo at least 1/4 thick all the way down- I actually wondered if the sides were fiberglass at first. So now I have 1/2 of the passenger side down to bare metal (which the whole bed will be eventually). Sprayed oven cleaner on all of the greasy winch parts- got the boom height adjuster lubed and working and lowered the boom a bit- the cables look rusty, but not rusted out.

Tomorrow I have to bob the frame, go to pick a part to get some dual rears off of a chevy 1 ton, maybe pick up some LED rear lights at the truck stop.

Gotta test the air tank and figure out what I'm gonna do to get air up there, then I have to trace and redo the wiring for the rear lights and the wigwags up top. I don't have a reverse switch on my tranny, so I guess I'm gonna make a switch plate where the radio used to be and and wire manual back up lights and control the additional lighting from there.

With all of the extra weight- I'm sure I have to upgrade the brakes- that little tuna can isn't gonna cut it anymore. And maybe some day a step up to caddy power to get things moving easier.

I've got the drive chain for the winch soaking in diesel, hopefully it loosens up.
if not- I'll have to experiment with the washing soda and battery charger.

I found some cab marker lights while digging through a parts box, I may have to install them.

Parts needed- Sling and arms, PTO and drives to the winch.


Thanks for the support, guys, I'm gonna be crackin on this one so I can cruise it all summer, the bed should be fitted properly and back on by next week. Getting the winch powered and functional will likely take longer.

Aerotruck63, great idea about the spotlights! I'd love to see the pics when you get a chance.

I'm toying with "8 ball Garage" for the side logo- It's what I call my little puttering around shop area here at home.
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"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger

Last edited by monolith; 06-01-2011 at 10:33 PM.
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Old 06-02-2011, 04:22 PM   #8
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Frame is now bobbed 6". While I was in the back yard I removed the bent front crossmember of my 2wd suburban, I get ADD when I look at all of my trucks. I want to work on all of them at once- but I've got a decent start on the "Rekker" and it runs (right now it's my daily- thank goodness I don't have to go anywhere on a regular basis for the next couple of months.) Now I'm off to rig the taillights, and get some lunch, then- bondo for dessert as I get back to grinding on the bed.
Saturday is 1/2 price day at the local pic a part, so I'm gonna drag my girlfriend there and get my dually wheels and a sway bar maybe some big mirrors, maybe a master cylinder- any other suggestions of what to keep an eye out for parts wise? I know I'm forgetting stuff.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 06-02-2011, 05:47 PM   #9
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Re: Project "Rekker"

What brand is the wrecker, does the winch have reverse built in it, or does it just have a worm gear input only, then drop down to a jack shaft , then on to the pto. You really need someone with knowledge befor you do this project. It would be much easier to get a 8000lb ramsey electric and throw away all the mechanical stuff......since you really do not plan on using it much. Kieth "The winch and wrecker guy in Tulsa"
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Old 06-02-2011, 08:27 PM   #10
monolith
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Re: Project "Rekker"


Front of the bed

Passenger side

driver side

It's a Holmes 440. There is a chain that goes on the sprocket, and a guard that goes over that. I don't have any other components.

The winch is the last thing I'm going to address on the rig, Kieth- but your advice is sound- an electric winch would eliminate all of the hassles of trying to rig the power from the tranny- I had been thinking of trying to fit a gas or electric motor to power the winch- but replacing it all together may be a better way to go. Thanks for your advice!
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger

Last edited by monolith; 06-02-2011 at 09:57 PM.
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Old 06-02-2011, 09:03 PM   #11
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Re: Project "Rekker"

did you get a pto with it?
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Old 06-02-2011, 09:53 PM   #12
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Re: Project "Rekker"

No, sadly- just the bed and winch.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 06-02-2011, 10:02 PM   #13
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Re: Project "Rekker"

You have a great start for the "Rekker". It'd be nice if you could set the chassis up so the rear can be easily removed, and a different one installed fairly easily. It'd be great to be able to make the truck "The Rekker", or, a flatbed, simply by changing the rear.

I have my 1964 Chevy 1 ton C30 dually flatbed now, love it, and am in the process of mounting a removable lifting boom with electric winch. It is gonna be a fun truck.

For three years, I have had the project before it, done, 1963 Ford wrecker, 292, granny low 4 speed, two speed rear end, and as much fun as the Chevy is. I go and get just about everyone's cars and take them all over the place with it, and the two local garages have me do their towing as well. Over the three years, I have made enough to pay for the Ford, and all the things I needed to buy to restore it to full operation, so, the truck didn't cost me anything, just took a while to recover the spent funds for it.

I may start a moving/transport business with the Chevy flatbed. The options are endless.

The Ford is fully restored, new paint, innards, just like it left the assembly line. the Chevy has lived a harder life, mechanically great, appearance, less than good, more like dismal. I also work with a lot of hot rod cars, and those guys have two different appearance options, RESTO, and RUSTO. Resto is painting the body with a black dull color, like it was in primer, and leave it like that, to give the impression it is a work in paint progress. RUSTO is just that, no effort to make the body appear any better than it is, and has become from the age, use and weather. The red paint is now orange, oxidized, and a great candidate for RUSTO rod truck. I may just rub what there is for paint out and leave it like it is. The interior has already been done as far as I am going, floor mat is in good condition, dash isn't bad, and I have the serape woven seat cover, done deal.

Last edited by HEI451; 06-02-2011 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 06-02-2011, 10:47 PM   #14
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Your trucks sound awesome! Do you have any pics? Feel free to post them here to inspire me- even the Ford

I think with my chassis being only a 3/4 ton, I'd be pushing it to actually put the truck to work as a real wrecker. Plus, insurance...me not knowing what the hell I'm doing- bad mix.

I do have the fleetside bed still and I'm going to be making the frame ends reattatchable by welding fish plates on the sides and being able to bolt them back on so I can support the rear cross member on the bed. I have to get to my buddies shop so I can use his welder. The wrecker bed will require 4 bolts and some spacers to attach it to the bed, so it seems that it will be easy to put on and take off(maybe I should invest in some camper jacks if I plan to do it more than once- with my changeability of mind- it's likely

This truck is definitely gonna be a "Rusto" (I love that term), I want it to look rode hard.

I've now ground about 20 lbs of bondo off and have only gotten the front and 1/2 of the passenger side down to metal- it's literally 1/2 to 3/4" thick in places- but the metal underneath isn't too bent up- the entire side has just been given a thick coat of bondo "protectant" I'm REALLY beginning to hate this stuff.

Fortunately the bed floor and booms look like they're just painted.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 06-03-2011, 10:28 AM   #15
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Ok, now that I see the pictures I know what the winch is, The wrecker is a Holmes 440 and the winch is a holmes which has reverse, neutral, and forward built in the winch. All you will need to drive it is a 2 gear single speed PTO, the proper hanger bearing, driveline, and a 2:1 chain and sprocket and then you will find out if the winch works........Good Luck...Kieth


The difference in this winch and a regular worm gear winch is that it has the engage- neutral- tied into the long rods on the bed which allowed it to be operated from the rear or side of the bed. These dogs which engage and disengage the winch must be in good shape for them to work properly. Its a cool old bed but may be very expensive to get going unless you can find a old guy who just wants to help you out and knows how they work. Check with some old towing companies in your area and see if anyone fits that mold. someone with experience could rig it up pretty quickly. Kieth ps Holmes used to be in Chattanooga, Tn do not know if they are still in business. the 440 was a single wich unit, the 480 had 2 winches and 2 seperate booms for recovery and towig.

Last edited by kieth; 06-03-2011 at 10:34 AM.
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Old 06-03-2011, 01:32 PM   #16
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Kieth, Thanks so much for the valuable info! I do have the levers at the rear of the bed- there's a long rod and a clevis that hooks to a bar leading to the winch. Nothing is bent, and they're still hooked up and move in their full range.



Here is a bracket that I removed to clear the crossmembers when transporting the bed- is this part of the winch drive train?

also- if you have pics of the complete drivetrain for this style hookup- I'd love to see them. I'll do some more research, based on your new info- keep it coming, it's very helpful.

Now, I guess it's outside to go eat more bondo.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 06-03-2011, 02:35 PM   #17
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Re: Project "Rekker"

What you show in the picture is where the Pillow block bearings , shaft, and sprocket mount, it goes against the bottom of the winch mounting angles, then you install the PTO with a cable shifter, then run the driveline to the pillow block-----then you are cooking with gas.....
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Old 06-03-2011, 04:27 PM   #18
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Re: Project "Rekker"

That's good news- I'm inclined to keep this winch arrangement soley because I think it would be neat to restore a piece of equipment like this- even if I only ever use it as an engine hoist.



Here's a pic of some of the thinner bondo on the rear passenger side.

I started attacking it with a 4" knotted wire wheel and the bondo is coming off a bit faster with that method. Less grinding on the metal underneath as well.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 06-04-2011, 09:43 AM   #19
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Re: Project "Rekker"

keep up the good work, We did my chasis first and thought it was a lot of work, Having never done the body work we did not realize that sand paper and bondo were instruments of torture (kink of like a level is when doing carpenter work) We are at the end of the body work now, getting ready to paint the bed, inner rear fenders, and 2 front fenders, then we will put her together..........Kieth Do not get discouraged.
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Old 06-08-2011, 02:50 AM   #20
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Re: Project "Rekker"

I won't get discouraged- I told myself that I had to finish this project before I could start on my Suburbans, and I want to get to those badly- I want to DD my 65 something awful and it's gonna take some work to get it there, so I've GOT to finish the Rekker in a timely fashion.

Scored big at Pic a Part 1/2 price day- got a complete GMC header panel, core support, and chrome grille WITH lights and letters. Been cleaning those up and getting them ready for the truck, the plan is to replace the whole doghouse with better parts. Just have to strip the fenders and inners now.

Got the passenger side bondo free, the drivers side has some ugly repair work under the bondo- good thing this truck doesn't have to be pretty. about 1/4 done with the drivers side, more grinding tomorrow after a return trip to PaP to check out a trans with a drum brake.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger

Last edited by monolith; 06-08-2011 at 02:52 AM.
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Old 06-08-2011, 04:25 PM   #21
HEI451
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Re: Project "Rekker"

Oh, man, I'd LOVE to find a project Bub-Surban like the '64 C30 I now have, and another 305 V6. It'd make a perfect "Staff Car"!
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Old 06-09-2011, 09:49 PM   #22
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Re: Project "Rekker"

I'm dying to find a c30 panel or ambulance( especially one of the 157" wheelbase ones), I'd give 3 of my trucks for either one! I'd love to make a 4x4 overland expedition vehicle (diesel powered of course). I'll keep wishing, hoping, and looking til one comes my way.

On to the current project- I managed to get it debondofied- the exterior of the bed is bare metal and it's gonna stay that way(the rest of the truck is going to be bare as well.) stripped a perfect header panel, and started on a set of inner fenders. I may be able to set the bed on tomorrow, I have to mount my old wagon wheels with the higher load rating tires and run those til I find my dually wheels- would anyone suggest running vintage 17.5's? or will tire selection be a bear?
Hopefully I can get this thing together tomorrow and drive it down to Ink N Iron in Long Beach on Saturday.
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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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Old 09-14-2012, 03:55 AM   #23
monolith
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Re: Project "Rekker"

It's been a long damn time since I've been able to seriously work on my trucks. This 66 started running like crap-smoke pouring out of the breather, so I parked it and drove my panel while I got my little hobby garage set up. I have a spare 250 that is ready to go in(unless I find a big block for cheap)and I've just spent the day tearing the doghouse apart so I can swap in better inner fenders, core support, inner fenders, etc.
One of the front frame horns is about an inch lower than the other, so I have to figure out where the damage is and how to straighten it.
I'd like to put a DRW axle on the back but let me ask: can I run duals with a SRW axle? Do I need spacers or adapters?
So after the truck's running and rolling I'm going to blow the wrecker bed apart and clean it up more, then reassemble it and mount it on the back.
Progress pics:







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Baz

"Deserve's got nothin' to do with it."

66 GMC 1500 wideside longbed 250 4spd "Project Rekker"http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=467467
65 GMC 1Ton Panelhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...32#post4794432
65 Chevy Panel (former U.S.Navy truck)
64 Chevy Suburban Carryall 4x4http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=358348
64 GMC 1000 wideside longbed 305 4spdhttp://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s....php?p=3600890(Rip- parts truck now)
68 Dodge Charger
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