Wednesday, March 23, 2011

1947 KB-2 International Restoration

Welcome back, kiddies. What a better way to rejuvenate my blog than with a self-serving post about restoring an old truck? I encourage you to follow along while I use big words to sound like I know what I'm talking about -- or you know, just look at the pictures.

I got this beast in October, and after towing it home from Lynnville, IA, it has sat idle in my garage. Not running. Not having brakes. With a broken rear spring. But goddamnit, the thing was mine, and I'd always wanted an old truck. As soon as it was towed home, the wife just looked at it, smiled, and shook her head. Her only talk of the truck usually involves the words "Sanford" and "Son" - most typically in that order.

Now I can hear you asking yourself, "what does he know about working on cars?". I don't know much, but I'm willing to do what I can and hopefully learn some stuff along the way. (Also a little known fact: in 1997 I was voted the best Trouble Light holder in three counties). I realize it's now March and it's been five months since the Craigslist purchase. It has given me plenty of opportunities to sit in my garage and stare at it while I drink High Lifes and smoke cigarettes. Sometimes I even sit in it and make VROOM VROOM noises. The horn still works, so I'd frequently honk it when imaginary women waved at me as I drove past them.

The truck was all original when I got it (oops, just found out someone put a different rear end on it). The original flathead engine, drum brakes, wood bed, chain mounted tailgate, crank out windshield. It wasn't without some customizations though - it has a friggin' gun rack in the back window. I'll say again, IT HAS A FRIGGIN GUN RACK IN THE BACK WINDOW.

Long story short, the original engine is somewhat close to running. It needs some valve work done and new rings. Much to the chagrin of many old schoolers, I've decided to put a small block Chevy engine in it. I have my reasons and you have yours, but ultimately the SBC makes more sense for me. I'm saving all of the old stuff, so hopefully a guy who's into the original stuff can put it to good use.

Specs: 1947 KB-2 International Harvester pickup, GRD-214 flathead six motor, three speed transmission on the floor, heavy duty Knox box

Well, here are some pics. I apologize for the quality. Most are taken with my crappy cell phone. Some are taken with my camera, and I'll be trying to use that from now on. Without further banter, here they are:
The front end is really why I bought this. It's a '47, but IHC was still doing a pre-War body style. Notice the pointy front end and all the chrome grillework. I have all the parts that are missing.



The aforementioned "Knox" box. It was an upgraded box, apparently with heavier gauge steel.



Big fenders!


Fairly rust-free considering the age. It helps that it sat many years in a barn. Bonus part: the engine was covered in coon/cat shit, the glove box was literally a mouse nest. I guess the gun rack failed to scare them off.

Until next time, when we'll have it in Checkered Past's hot rod shop....


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You have yourself a gem there. Even has the rare rear bumper. I'm trying to restore one also and it's a rust bucket. I made the mistake of buying from an east coast owner rather than getting a nice dry solid truck from out west.