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How I got tangled up in this

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  • How I got tangled up in this

    A friend of mine had this '53 Power Wagon in his yard. Whenever I would go visit him I always thought it was a cool truck. It also looked handier than a pocket on a shirt for use around a homestead. As can happen, my friend decided to leave Alaska so I lost my senses and bought it from him. A nabe and I hauled it home on a trailer. Then I went back in my '73 F-350 flat bed for a large stash of parts that came with it. I got it running (sort of) but then got involved in a bunch of other projects. (Like turning about 50 acres of black spruce into a hayfield.) So it sat quite a while peeking forlornly out from under its tarp.

    This fall I finally got the beast into the shop. My bro was up for the weekend so I had him steer while I shoved it into the shop with the bucket loader on the tractor. (You can't hurt those winch bumpers!) The half inch of gookum I found in the float bowl probably had something to do with its being hard to start. This truck has a 230 out of a '56 coronet with a 2 bbl Stromberg on it. New linkage was called for. I wound up tearing apart the fuel system from the carb to the tank and cleaned everything up. Now fuel actually gets to the cylinders and burns! New plugs, new wires and other stuff got it running fairly well.

    Since the old girl was now running and could move under its own power, I naturally decided to disable it. The only functioning brake was the handbrake, and the truck was sitting on some 9.00X16 NDT tires that were about a zillion years old and full of cracks. You know...Maypops. Now it is sitting on four jackstands. I took all the wheels to a shop in town after I spent a couple hours beating on one trying to get it apart (16" Budd wheel). I finally got all the brake drums off. (Those #$^^*#%@@ screws!) What worked swell here was a modified drag link socket, a lot of PB Blaster, and a 1/2" air impact wrench. It only took a day of running around town to hardware places and finally cornering the Matco truck in a parking lot to obtain said socket. One shoe had only rivets on it. All of the wheel cylinders were frozen solid, although one did have a little bit of nasty black brake fluid in it. Getting the master cylinder out is fun too. Of course it is also a goner. I figure that I am going to completly remove the brake system and put in new lines, cylinders and shoes. I can reuse the drums and the brake pedal though! While I am at it I figure I better find a rear sump oil pan so it won't bang on the front pumpkin if I hit a bump. I have the whole bed for it and it is not in too bad a shpe, but I will probably put a flat bed on it.

    That's where we are with it. I don't really harbor delusions of grandeur about herding this critter in parades, I just want to get it to the stage of being a useable workhorse around the homestead. After all, that is what Power Wagons are all about! We will probably make a fair pair as the truck is only one year younger than I am and we are both a little mangey around the edges.

  • #2
    Excellent story! Congrats on the purchase and revival of another PW. Keep us posted on your progress and post some pics!


    • #3
      Love it, pretty much in the same boat here. Reviving a around the yard odd parade working beast. Post some pics of the ma-cheen.


      • #4
        Thanks Bilfman. I've been through Sask a few times. Hope you are having a good winter. It hasn't been too bad here this year. -20F today. I'll put up a couple pictures whenever I find a place to park them on the net.