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View Full Version : C50/C60 frame swap


abus319
March 26th, 2015, 03:32 PM
I have a really clean 64 C50 winch truck that my dad bought at a farm sale several decades ago. No title, motor needs overhaul, and has several large cracks in the frame. One crack behind the cab is nearly completely through the frame.
I have an opportunity to get a 82 C60 with a trashed cab at a reasonable price. Any one have any Idea how much difference there are in the frames?

Cayoterun
March 26th, 2015, 07:45 PM
That's a clean old truck. Did it come from around here, or from down there?

Wish I could help on the swap, but don't know anything about them. Good Luck.

Andice
March 27th, 2015, 03:43 AM
My '64 GMC Maintenance Manual has several pages dedicated to repairing cracks and other damage to frames. Seems a lot easier to repair what you've got than to remove a cab and try to make it fit a frame that is nearly 20 years newer. Just my thoughts.

abus319
March 27th, 2015, 01:59 PM
Marvin
I enjoyed our conversation, as always, we need to make that a routine..

The Chevy came from the panhandle complete with about 50 lbs of dust
and a collection old bolts and tidbits of equipment. It was farm archeology cleaning that thing out.

Andice
Thanks for your input. I wasn't aware of the frame repair section.
I don't have a Chevy manual but the 60 GMC manual clearly shows that it can be welded. That addresses half the problem.
The title is the bigger problem. We never found that "safe place" where my dad kept titles. We really doubt if he ever registered it since it was only used on the farm. We know that it was purchased at a farm sale and suspect that is was probably sold as scrap.
I have heard the horror stories about trying to get a title in Texas, and had a little taste of it trying to register the GMC. :banghead:

Andice
March 27th, 2015, 02:23 PM
Apply for a "bonded title". This costs around $150. My dad did it just a few years ago. I remember him telling me something about there being only a few auto title places in the state still doing bonded title work. Maybe a guy in Temple/Killeen does it, an ex-DPS trooper, blah, blah, blah. Clearly I've not retained all of what my dad told me but I feel certain that a couple phone calls will get you started if you decide to title the truck.

Andice
March 27th, 2015, 02:26 PM
Here you go:

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quest
March 27th, 2015, 06:32 PM
I have a really clean 64 C50 winch truck that my dad bought at a farm sale several decades ago. No title, motor needs overhaul, and has several large cracks in the frame. One crack behind the cab is nearly completely through the frame.
I have an opportunity to get a 82 C60 with a trashed cab at a reasonable price. Any one have any Idea how much difference there are in the frames?

Hi There, If you have access to the newer truck I would just take a few quick measurements to compare to your truck, like center of front axle to the firewall and firewall to the front cab mounts and then distance between cab mounts front/back & side/side just to see how close it is.
Frames can be repaired for sure but I still like the idea of a rust free solid uncracked steel under me.
If you like what you see then you might find the swap easier than expected. I guess it depends on how cheap you can get the newer truck for? good luck and here's another C50 you might like.

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abus319
March 27th, 2015, 09:55 PM
Thanks Quest.
The truck is a 10 hour drive from Austin so it wasn't really feasible to drive down to take a look. I was hoping that someone here might have some experience with the C60 frame. Its a moot point now though, the owner wasn't able to produce a title.

Donny
April 29th, 2015, 03:28 AM
Bring it to California I'll fix it, I don't do rivets though don't care if I drill out another rivet in my lifetime lol

abus319
April 29th, 2015, 04:17 AM
Dont tempt me, Im retired!!
Seriously though, I think you would find everything from there cab back appalling. They welded every stringer to the top of the frame, then welded 1/2 inch plate to the stringers. From the splatter I would guess 6011 turned way up, nice and hot. Thats where most of the cracks start. Looks nothing like those nice welds on your frame.

Donny
April 29th, 2015, 06:14 AM
Well I have this truck I don't know what I'm gonna do with the fire truck I took the Off the truck has like 38,000 miles on it the frame is like brand-new they under coded this truck I think that is what saved it Cab had virtually no rust don't know how serious you are probably would have to change a few things cab mounts Would be a little different

abus319
April 29th, 2015, 04:11 PM
Hmmm let me pinball that around in my brain for a bit.
What is the wheelbase, and are you willing to let the title go with the frame?

Donny
April 29th, 2015, 04:52 PM
Title would be a problem The dad died he had a few firetrucks bought it from his son and only have a bill of sale

abus319
May 4th, 2015, 02:47 PM
Thanks, I would love to have a nice clean dry frame like that. If you were closer I would probably be interested even without the title but I can't really justify the transportation cost.
After watching your build I have been looking into buying new frame rails.

Donny
May 4th, 2015, 03:18 PM
Does your friend have a lot of rivets ? If it does that's the worst part of the whole thing, I just have the rails bent to go over the old rails , I bought hougen mag drill 150 ,

abus319
May 4th, 2015, 05:29 PM
No theres not very many rivets in the frame.
Do you think it would be sufficient to just wrap the bottom and side, up to the welds across the top of the frame?
What size and type material? (Gvw is <17k)
keep in mind its inevitable that it will be used to pick up something that will pull the front end off of the ground. The first reaction is to push the clutch and down she goes. HARD

abus319
May 4th, 2015, 05:39 PM
Wow that mag drill is like having a portable milling machine!
Some 1" rougher end mills and no more rivet head....

abus319
October 8th, 2015, 06:18 PM
I found a running 79 C60 with a roached body cheap so we will see how the swap goes. The frame is only a quarter inch wider but the C60 cab is nearly a foot shorter than the C50.
I decided that a vertical line off of the front axle (hub) would be the reference point, since I wouldn't consider moving the axle. Horizontal measurements from the reference line locates the back of the C50 cab 7" farther back which looks do-able. I think...

Donny
October 9th, 2015, 05:04 AM
Looks good are they the same year this to C 50 and the C 60 , my dad had about the same year truck

abus319
October 9th, 2015, 01:37 PM
It certainly looks like the same series. This one has some issues as you might expect from a $500 truck, but I drove it home without any problems. It has the 350 instead of the 366 which would look a little more appropriate in the 64"s engine bay.
I'm in the process of having the front springs rebuilt and putting new brakes on the fronts so far. Front clip is off and everything on the cab is unbolted except the steering clutch and brakes.
I ran across another project which is slowing the process down on this swap. These orphans seem to follow me home?????

abus319
November 13th, 2015, 04:11 PM
I finally got the cab off of the 79. The 2x12 for a spreader is a little hokey but I was trying not to ruin what appeared to be a recently replaced windshield. Now that access to the engine is easier I can get to the oil and exhaust leaks, then try and figure out why it won't go into 3rd gear. At some point during all that I will mock up the 64 body and front clip.

abus319
February 19th, 2016, 02:22 PM
Progress is slow. The motor had a coupla flat lobes, so now I'm rebuilding a recent rebuild. I have replaced the front brakes and put new seals in the steering box. Both front spring pacs had broken leaves so I had them rebuilt. Cleaning the frame for POR.

Bigben88
March 8th, 2016, 10:21 PM
Abus,
How's the build coming? Any updates/pics or found problems?

abus319
March 8th, 2016, 11:26 PM
This is my first complete engine build, so its coming along slowly. I am trying to be meticulous and learn as much as I can along the way. I seem to run into roadblocks at every stage of the process. 0 endplay on the crank was one such problem. But it is getting there.. I should have the valve train in this week..
In the mean time I am experimenting with POR on the frame around the engine cradle. Im not too impressed so far.
I used Eastwoods high heat ceramic paint on the engine.