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Old 05-23-2012, 05:34 PM   #1
jrdecat
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Arrow 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Found this on the ol' craigslist today...the wife is going to kill me! I wasn't looking for a big dumper, but the price was right. I'd really like a '59 4x4, but I haven't come across that one yet. The guy I bought it from swears he has driven it, but it hasn't been started recently. The battery was dead (imagine that) and we couldn't get it to fire up with the crank either. I could turn the engine though and could hear it trying to suck in air, which I took as a good sign. I offered the guy $150 under his asking price since it wouldn't start and he took another $50 off and handed me the keys, title, and original owner's manual! I'm amazed at the sheet metal on this thing. Based on the price, I was expecting a pile of crumpled metal with lots of cancer, but I was pleasantly surprised! Sure it's not perfect, but it's a lot better than what a lot of people have to start with. Not even a rusted cab corner! I want to get her into usable condition and use her for a driver. I know it won't be the most economical ride, but you don't buy something like this for fuel economy. Luckily, the commute to work has a max speed limit of 50 mph. List of things to do:

1) Drink a beer
2) Clean out the mouse infestation
3) Clean up interior.
4) Get the motor running
5) New side windows, door panels (custom stainless or aluminum?)
6) Tires and/or rims.
7) Cut the bed narrower so it will fit on the road and into parking spots better.
8) Disc brakes.

Somewhere down the road I might throw a diesel in there, but I won't have to worry about that for a long time. I just need to be able to paint my business name on the side and drive around.

I am now taking suggestions on where to begin. The numbered list was just the first few things that popped into my head.












Last edited by jrdecat; 05-23-2012 at 05:39 PM. Reason: messed up the image uploads...
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:43 PM   #2
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

The interior:













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Old 05-23-2012, 05:53 PM   #3
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Other random shots:











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Old 05-23-2012, 05:56 PM   #4
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

That's almost a twin to my 51. Deluxe heater and is that knob for a two speed rear axle or a pto?

When you get it running and driving you can haul a load of stuff off to the dump and she will be a happy camper but it is all too well capable of hauling stuff like loads of gravel and bark home too.
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Old 05-23-2012, 06:27 PM   #5
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

I'm admitting right now that I am clueless on trucks this old. i'll be asking a lot of stupid questions about things like, "where are my windshield wipers?"

Already found a cool resource: http://chevy.oldcarmanualproject.com...to/48index.htm

checked the weights and dimensions...looks like uhaul doesn't have a trailer it will fit on.

with regards to the knob for a two speed axle vs PTO...your guess is as good as mine! i will have to check the owner's manual!
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Old 05-23-2012, 07:36 PM   #6
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Trucks that nice: once in a lifetime
Wife: you'll find another.... they're a dime a dozen
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:00 PM   #7
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

I wouldnt paint it right away that patina is awesome
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:16 PM   #8
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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I wouldnt paint it right away that patina is awesome
Oh there will be no paint for this one for a loooooooong time.
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:30 PM   #9
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Nice truck!!! Those mirrors are crazy lookin'.
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Old 05-23-2012, 08:33 PM   #10
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Nice, good luck with that project and welcome to the forum
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:15 PM   #11
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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Nice truck!!! Those mirrors are crazy lookin'.
Yah, I know that they're functional and all, but that is one reason I want to make the bed narrower. I want to be able to see behind me without those weird lookin' things sticking out!
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:41 AM   #12
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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...and is that knob for a two speed rear axle or a pto?

When you get it running and driving you can haul a load of stuff off to the dump and she will be a happy camper but it is all too well capable of hauling stuff like loads of gravel and bark home too.
Did some checking around online and judging from pictures, she's got the single speed axle so the knob is for the hydraulic dump. At least that's how they worked on the 63 that I drove while growing up. One of my friends has already volunteered her to haul a load of rocks.

After I get this project wrapped up in a few weeks I am going to try to get this truck up to Denver from Amarillo to put some work into it.

http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=430850





This is me biting off more than I can chew.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:18 AM   #13
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Great truck, love the patina and semaphore signals! The big knob is probably for the dump bed, two speed rear end levers are usually on the shift lever so you can push pull with your pinky and other finger, drove one for a couple of years in the 70's. Interesting because when fully loaded you had a pretty complicated pattern combination to sequentially go thru the 8 gear combinations.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:53 AM   #14
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Any recommendations on the best way to clean up that dash? I don't want to use the wrong kind of cleaner and mess it up.

The interior has got to be the first thing that I tackle. There has got to be a whole herd of field mice in there. Ripping out that headliner is going to be disgusting.
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Old 05-24-2012, 11:57 AM   #15
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Great looking truck. I am a fan of the bigger trucks.
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:14 PM   #16
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

You should get a the Factory Assembly Manual and Service Manuals to help with your project. They have them for the light trucks at http://www.fillingstation.com
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:18 PM   #17
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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Originally Posted by jrdecat View Post
Any recommendations on the best way to clean up that dash? I don't want to use the wrong kind of cleaner and mess it up.

Hey, Awesome Truck!!!

I would use CLR on the dash. It will remove the rust staining but leave the paint. I've seen it used on exterior body panels with great results.

Good luck,
Greg
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:52 PM   #18
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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You should get a the Factory Assembly Manual and Service Manuals to help with your project. They have them for the light trucks at http://www.fillingstation.com
The FAM covers the big trucks too.
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Old 05-24-2012, 08:51 PM   #19
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrdecat View Post
Yah, I know that they're functional and all, but that is one reason I want to make the bed narrower. I want to be able to see behind me without those weird lookin' things sticking out!
I need to narrow the flatbed on my 54 1-ton too, the mirrors on it look something like a jungle gym.
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1978 Camaro Type LT with a Marine 350 & vortec heads, Rochester Carb, & roller cam
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:19 AM   #20
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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Hey, Awesome Truck!!!

I would use CLR on the dash. It will remove the rust staining but leave the paint. I've seen it used on exterior body panels with great results.

Good luck,
Greg
Thanks Greg. I'll be sure and get some pictures up after I give her a good once over.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:26 AM   #21
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

It even has the hood orniment.
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Old 05-25-2012, 11:00 PM   #22
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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It even has the hood orniment.
It's kind of funny...the chrome on the outside of the truck looks much better than the chrome on the inside. I would have thought it to be the other way around.

I'm going to get the truck tomorrow and it will either be driven or towed home. It was running less than a year ago and all of the tires are holding air. It's a 55 mile trip to where the truck is parked. I will be taking: lots of water for the radiator, gas, oil, air compressor, tow strap, brake fluid, AAA card...

Any other suggestions?

I'm kinda worried about towing this beast behind a pickup and the pickup needing to stop suddenly, because I know the truck won't!
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Old 05-26-2012, 10:48 PM   #23
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Just had an interesting adventure...my buddy and I went to go bring the truck home. It's about 60 miles so we figured that we'd either tow it or drive it. Drive it was option #1 but we didn't think that ol' green would be too road worthy, and we were right! First thing we did was topped off all the fluids: gas, oil, water, brake, windshield washer (just kidding). Anyways, about the time we decided to fire her up I realized I had left the keys in the cup holder of my car - 60 miles away! Such an idiot. They key had been removed in the "on" position so I was pretty sure we could pull start it. 3 or 4 tries and the engine fired up and was running. I had to keep feathering the gas pedal to keep her running though so we had a few moments of panic on the highway. I forgot to mention that we couldn't get the brakes working, but the hand brake worked so we figured that was good enough. My friend definitely did not want to tow this thing the whole way.

I had swept out most of the mouse turds from the cab, but there was still some headliner that I didn't rip out, so every time I hit a bump I had mouse turds falling on my head. I got the rig up to 35 mph a couple of times. I only blew through one 4 way stop sign and 1 red light due to the lack of brakes, but I got lots of thumbs up and smiles.

60 miles, multiple traffic infractions, an uncountable number of mouse turds, and a lot of stress got us the 60 miles from ft collins to denver. I probably should have added the truck to my insurance before I drove it...

But now she's home and I didn't die.

Step #1 - get rid of the turds and mangled headliner
Step #2 - fix the brakes

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Old 05-27-2012, 12:20 AM   #24
Dan in Pasadena
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

Well, glead you made it home safely...but NOT the smartest thing anyone ever did driving that with only an emergency brake.

Nevertheless, after you get those brakes working and a thorough vacumning done I'd be wanting to wash the hell outta her and use some CLR to get the surface rust off. Some 0000 steel wool in and out ought to have her looking like her old self again. Nice truck
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Old 05-27-2012, 12:29 AM   #25
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Re: 1948 1 1/2 Ton Loadmaster

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Well, glead you made it home safely...but NOT the smartest thing anyone ever did driving that with only an emergency brake.

Nevertheless, after you get those brakes working and a thorough vacumning done I'd be wanting to wash the hell outta her and use some CLR to get the surface rust off. Some 0000 steel wool in and out ought to have her looking like her old self again. Nice truck
Thanks! There were a couple scary moments, but most of the time it was a nice easy cruise. She likes to run about 35 MPH. Got going a little faster once down a hill.

A thorough cleaning is in order for tomorrow.
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