1950 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup - SOLD
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It’s had a frame-off restoration to a very good standard, certainly better than most, but the bones underneath are impressively straight and clean.

Collector trucks are a relatively recent phenomenon, and it wouldn’t have been surprising to see this handsome 1950 Chevrolet 3100 pickup still working at its day job perhaps as recently as the 1980s. They were simple, rugged tools designed to work hard and never complain and they were pretty darned good at it. Better still, they’re fun to drive and have a wonderful old-school look that stands out in today’s world of oversized pickups designed for the suburbs. For affordable fun in an old vehicle, this Chevy still has a lot to offer.

Given its condition today, we’re guessing that this 1950 Chevy led a pretty easy life down south in Texas. It’s had a frame-off restoration to a very good standard, certainly better than most, but the bones underneath are impressively straight and clean. That means no floor patches, no wrinkled frame, no rusty doors, all suggesting that this truck never really had to work for a living. The gentleman who restored it owned it for more than 10 years and spent six of them restoring the truck to its current state, and we’re impressed. The glossy black paint appears to be the truck’s original color, and it’s probably worlds shinier than it was in 1950 thanks to the wonders of modern paint technology. You know that black paint means the bodywork needs to be right, and you can sight down any panel on this truck and you’ll see clear reflections and no ripples or waves. Someone clearly invested a lot of time and effort here. Hood fit is typical of trucks of the period, good but not perfect, and the same goes for the doors which swing on brand new hinges that are still a little stiff. Otherwise, the cosmetics on this truck are pretty impressive. The chrome on the grille and hood ornament has been refinished and the bumpers are excellent with no dings or chips. Small marker lights have been added on the front fenders, apparently for turn signals that were never installed, but hooking them up would be easy. There’s a single taillight out back for that old-school trucky look and the running boards are in great shape with only a few signs of having been stepped upon. And the bed is just beautiful, with new oak planks and rub strips that pretty much ensure its hauling days are over.

The interiors of these trucks were basic and low-maintenance, and that’s how this one is today. The tan vinyl seat cover is a correct reproduction and it’s a great contrast to the black paint and helps keep it cool on warm days. Matching door panels and headliner keep it bright inside, and there’s a new rubber mat on the floor that makes for easy maintenance. Big, round gauges give you a full view of the engine’s condition, although it appears that the temperature gauge isn’t working. There’s also a bit steering wheel that makes it easy to wrangle the truck even in tight spaces and three-on-the-tree shifting is a snap. Radios and heaters were still optional in 1950, and this truck did receive an under-dash heater, but the original radio block-off plate is still in place. It’s simple, easy, tough, and has no surprises. The only notable issue is that the windshield wiper motor has not been installed, but it’s included with the truck.

For power, this pickup uses a 235 cubic inch inline-6 from a 1954 model. In truck terms, that’s not a demerit, because it gives you both more power and full-pressure lubrication, which was not included in this truck’s original 216 incher. As a result, it feels quick on the road and very durable, and the sweet-running six feels smoother than you’d expect from a working-class pickup. It starts almost instantly with some choke, and it runs so cool that you’ll probably need to keep the choke out until it’s fully warmed up. Even so, it runs clean and pulls well through all three gears with no hesitation, stumbles, or soft spots. The engine itself is nicely detailed with proper Chevy gray paint on the block itself, a ‘Chevrolet’ script valve cover, and correct oil bath air cleaner on a downdraft carburetor. Most of the stuff under the hood is new or rebuilt, including the engine itself, the carburetor, the fuel pump, the starter, and there are all new ignition components. It shows about 229 miles on the odometer, and we believe that’s since it was restored, so it’s still very fresh. We also like that they went the extra mile and used correct hose clamps on the heater hoses, and all the wiring is fresh so no worries there.

The 3-speed manual transmission shifts cleanly and clutch action is light. It doesn’t need much revving to get off the line, so take it easy on the clutch and let the torque pull you along. We believe there are high-speed gears out back, perhaps 3.55s instead of the original 4.10s, and it sure whistles along at modern highway speeds without working very hard. The downside is that the speedometer reads a little slow, but that’s a fair trade-off for the improved usability on the road. The suspension, steering, and brakes are all rebuilt but completely stock, so it still bounces along like an old truck and with manual drums, plan your stops and leave some extra room. On the other hand, it’s pretty light so the brakes are effective for their age and the leaf spring suspension feels tough. There are a few squeaks and rattles, as you’d expect from an old truck, but it’s really a pleasure to drive—I’ve been driving it every day since we got it. We just installed fresh 215/85/16 blackwall radials on the painted steel wheels, which come with shiny hubcaps and trim rings to dress it up a bit.

This truck also comes with a selection of manuals, books, and invoices for some of the recent work, the aforementioned windshield wiper motor, plus a second set of five original wheels.

This is one of the nicest Advance Design pickups we’ve seen in a long time. It’s quite correct, nicely finished, and gives you that old truck feel. But at the same time, it zips through traffic easily and never gets cranky, eliminating the two biggest complaints many people have about driving old vehicles. It’s a great choice and the way things are going, vintage pickups aren’t going to be this cheap forever. Call today!

Vehicle: 1950 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 214020
Mileage: 229
VIN: HBA967518
Engine: 235 cubic inch inline-6
Transmission: 3-speed manual
Gear Ratio: 3.55
Wheelbase: 116 inches
Wheels: 16-inch steel wheels with hubcaps
Tires: 215/85/16 blackwall radial
Exterior Color: Black
Interior Color: Tan vinyl
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