Warren is a lover of American cars and has always had some or other project on the go, He wanted a Pickup that was a nice weekend drive. However, he didn’t want to wait for the time it would take to build something according to the spec and standards that he wanted. So while browsing online one night, he came across a 1955 Chevy 3100 Pickup that he admits was a complete impulse buy. “The truck was complete and was purely for the enjoyment and cruising”
The truck was imported in 2010, and as Warren says “everything is always better looking in the flesh”. However, nothing prepared him for the sheer power and comfort of the Pickup. The thing idles around 100 mph on the highway.
The pick-up came with a huge file that accounted for every part and work that was done on it. It gives you a feel for what the builder was trying to achieve. The Pickup also came with a document explaining in details what has gone into the build.
So what you have here is a great-looking show and go truck with a ton of trick features. Excellent workmanship, and enough receipts and paperwork to keep a document shredding company in business for a week. Starting with a clean body, the entire vehicle was stripped down and the metal was refinished to a high standard. Then the 2-stage Hugger Orange paint was applied. Body modifications are subtle but significant.
This includes a frenched-in antenna on the back of the cab, a custom roll pan with louvered taillights, trick exhaust cut-outs on the fender stops, and a modified tailgate with a smooth look. The doors pop open using SPAL remote solenoids, while the original handles operate them from the inside. The hood is a fiberglass piece that adds a ‘60s style cowl induction look to the traditional 1955 Chevy hood design. If you look at the photos, you’ll see why they needed the clearance such a hood offers (more on that in a few moments). Other custom tricks included shaved door handles, emblems and a subtle de-chroming.
The traditional Hugger Orange paint wasn’t part of the Chevy truck paint pallet in 1955. There was no such thing as Hugger Orange, everything was Coral Sand or Desert Sunset or something like that, but it looked killer on this cruiser. The original sheet metal contours really speak loudly without resorting to busy graphics. You can see that the designers back then really had a good eye for style and proportion.
This isn’t a little vehicle, but it looks tidy and muscular, especially hunkered down over those big polished aluminum wheels. The paint is in excellent condition and I would be proud to drive and show this truck at any local show and possibly take home a trophy or two. It’s that nice! It was clearly buffed and rubbed out at some point, and there is almost no trace of orange peel or waviness anywhere on the body. Nice!
Have a look in the bed and dig the new oak floor that has been refinished as nicely as the hardwood in your living room. Stainless steel strips separate the individual oak planks for a trick look (although this was how they did it when these trucks were new). The little flip-up door you’re seeing in the pictures is for access to the gas tank filler neck.
So open up that cowl induction hood I was talking about and get a load of the massive 454 Chevy big block. Topped by a Weiland 6-71 supercharger and a pair of Edelbrock 4-barrel blower carbs. That’s one tall, impressive piece of machinery, and every single component is buffed and polished to a mirror shine. From the blower case to the pulleys to the valve covers. Looking through the receipts, I’m seeing that it also features an MSD ignition, Hooker headers, and a custom exhaust system that terminates in those trick rectangular tips under the running boards.
There’s also a Vintage A/C system, rebuilt alternator, and a new big block starter for reliability. It thunders to life easily and idles surprisingly well for such a radical piece, suggesting that someone has spent A LOT of time and effort getting it to run so perfectly. Put your wife in it. She’ll have no problems trotting down to the store, then hammer it down the drag strip on the weekend. Although you’d better believe this brutal power plant is going to incinerate those relatively skinny rear tires. The owner reports that it runs ice cold under all conditions thanks to a thick aluminum radiator and electric cooling fan up front.
The engine is backed by a 77R4 4-speed automatic transmission that has been built to handle the stress it’s dishing out. There’s a 2200 RPM stall torque converter in there for great street manners and a little extra snap off the line. The chassis is the original 1955 piece, heavily modified with a Mustang II type front suspension and a TCI 4-link setup outback. This comes with a Ford 9-inch axle taking the power and putting it to the wheels.
You’ll also notice disc brakes up front and a power brake booster under the hood for reliable stopping power. There are airbags instead of springs at each corner. The chassis itself was powder coated black for long-term durability, and the exhaust system was 100% custom fabricated and uses FlowMaster mufflers for that distinctive sound. The wheels are American Racing Hopsters, 17x7s up front, and 17x8s out back. Although it has just 1300 miles on it, this orange truck was built to drive!
Climb into the 100% custom interior and you’re immediately enveloped by an acre of light tan leather. The upholstery is a mixture of new and old, with a decidedly ‘50s-style pleating to the seats and door panel. The dashboard has been smoothed and cleaned up with a simple instrument binnacle in front of the driver housing vintage-style gauges from TPI Tech. All the critical controls for the Kenwood AM/FM/CD player, A/C system and Air Ride Technology suspension system (with individual controls for each corner) have been cleverly located below the front seat where they can be easily reached but don’t clutter up the dashboard.
There are gauges for front and rear air pressures in the suspension to fine-tune the ride and ride height, and knobs for headlights and other secondary controls. Power windows were added to the doors, the tilt steering column is a billet unit, and the steering wheel has been wrapped with matching light tan leather. That little pouch sewn to the side of the steering column houses the remote control for the entertainment system, a nice touch. This interior must have cost a fortune!
This 55 is just breathtaking and the attention to details is something all shops should strive for. Warren calls it his minimalistic, all perfect for the weekend, cruiser with enormous power.