’59 Chevrolet Apache
We’ve all heard those entertaining stories about ol’ pickups found in barns somewhere or other, but CLASSIC TRUCKS reader Bob Hayden was lucky enough to run across the real thing! Bob purchased his ’59 Apache from a friend who rescued the pickup after it’d spent a good 30 years just waiting to be discovered. Bob made his purchase in November of 2010, just one month before he retired from his day job, and began the project nearly full-time that February (he’s done everything but the paint and upholstery in his home garage).
Like most, Bob’s project began with a complete teardown to the bare frame. Once the cab and bed were removed he cleaned up the chassis and tore it apart as well. Once the frame was cleaned and prepped he installed a Heidts MII-style IFS setup featuring a power rack-and-pinion and 11-inch disc brakes. Out back he removed three leaf springs from each spring pack and hung a drum-brake 9-inch Ford rearend in place of the original. With the chassis mods completed and the chassis freshly painted Bob mounted up a quartet of Cragar wheels and BFGoodrich tires completing the pickup’s foundation. Next he installed a Holley Pro-Jection 2D fuel injection-equipped 350-cube small-block backed by a 700-R4 overdrive trans for motivation.
The Chevys sheetmetal was then massaged back into shape and the guys at Craig’s Collision Center in Pittsfield, Illinois, applied a glass-smooth coating of ’06 GMC Sierra Maroon DuPont urethane. After the addition of a slew of new reproduction components (door handles, mirrors, etc.) Bob then had fresh new interior upholstery installed by H&K Auto Trim in Jacksonville, Illinois, as the Apache’s finishing touch.