Dodge lorry rebuild Dodge truck restoration

Further ancillaries are restored and re-fitted to this classic commercial.

Restoration Part 26. Click here to return to the main Dodge lorry restoration page. Part of oldclassiccar.co.uk. Contact page.

June 2009.
With the engine now back in the chassis, attentions could turn to the myriad of smaller items that needed re-furbishment before being re-fitted to the Dodge. The new fuel senders were modified and fitted to the restored tanks, and replacement filler necks sourced from someone breaking a 1940s Dodge in the States. Several heavier items were taken for blasting, including the hefty 10 stud split-rim wheels, in preparation for the fitment of the Dunlop tyres sourced in May. Several meetings with VHC, referring to aspects of the restoration, and discussions regarding the budget to see the project completed, were also undertaken in June 2009.
Repainted dashboard
June saw the dash repainted in Westminster Green paint, the final shine toned-down somewhat so as not to look overly fresh. Dodge trucks of this era featured the full "waterfall" dash (centre section), this would be truncated on later trucks.
Exhaust system
The exhaust system was made up several years ago, using the corroded remains of the original system as a template. Before re-installation, it was treated to a lick of high temperature paint, before being gently warmed through to dry it correctly. In the background is original tubing used in the vacuum braking system.
Car winch
Shown here part-stripped and having received it's first coat of paint, the original winch that once pulled the ex-Nuvolari 8C-35 into the back of the truck. The steel cable was in a poor state so will be replaced.
Petrol tank filler necks
For some time I'd been looking around for a matched pair of suitable petrol tank filler necks & caps. Caps seem easy to find, as do filler necks suitable for vintage cars, but finding a pair that would look right on an old lorry was proving to be tricky. Eventually I found someone in the US with a proper 1939-1947 Dodge truck filler neck on ebay, and even better, he had a second identical assembly. Both were swiftly purchased, and soon they were winging their way over to the UK.
Dashboard gauges
With the dash looking better than ever, it was time to assess the various old dials that I'd accumulated, to build up a working set. The speedometer was either a new-old-stock, or military re-conditioned unit, and needed little attention other than a clean and lubrication. The set of auxiliary gauges were built up from various donor gauges I had "in stock", and some gauge internals were replaced with new items I'd sourced off the 'net. New original lenses were fitted to both rectangular clusters, these incorporate the gauge lettering so really set the dials off a treat. The needles were also repainted white where necessary.
Side running lamps
Throughout the search for parts, I've tried to source in-period parts rather than modern replacements, as modern lamps on old vehicles look terrible I think. The directional turn signals that will be fitted front and rear, are genuine 1940s American items shipped from various points in the US, as were the ex-military stop/turn signals that were tracked down. Shown above are some proper old side running lamps, sourced again in the US, and featuring cast aluminium housings, with glass lenses (later lamps had cheaper plastic lenses). These would have been fitted on coaches in the 30s and 40s, so will look correct for a former crewbus built in 1940.
Wheels
The wheels needed a thorough sandblasting before they could even be considered for painting. They're shown here post-blasting, having received a protective coat of red oxide primer. I really need to find at least one extra rim to use as a spare, so if anyone has a 10 stud Budd rim lying around, please let me know.
Rear side window framing
Shown above, leaning against the refurbished front doors, is one of the four re-made window frames that will be fitted to the main body of the vehicle. They incorporate one fixed, and one sliding pane of glass - fortunately the original glass was re-usable.
Engine and underbonnet view
This nearside view of the engine shows some of the ancillaries (eg oil filter, dipstick, oil filler, distributor, dynamo and brake master cylinder) in-situ. Also in evidence, some of the new braided wiring that will shortly be installed throughout the truck. The wiring will be protected by modern insulation, then hidden by a braided covering. The steering box had also been removed for overhaul at this point. Note the correct base-mounted Autolite 6v coil and regulator fitted to the bulkhead
Return to the Dodge lorry restoration page for more info on this rebuild.
Previous Page: Part 25 - Re-installation of the engine and work on ancillaries & rear coachwork..
Next Page: Part 27 - Further re-assembly, and fitment of the repainted wheels.
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