It's probably fairly safe to say that many classic truck owners these days are also new truck owners. For some, all the fancy modern amenities the late-models come equipped with either provide a better appreciation for their classic's basic features, or fuel for wanting to bring the old antiques a little closer to modern standards. While major mechanicals such as brakes and steering are quite commonly upgraded, when it comes to the windows, namely those rudimentary scissor-type regulators hiding behind the door panels, if they go up and down, that's good enough, right? Maybe.

Right off the bat, there's no doubt power windows are a great luxury to have in any vehicle. Then again, they're not a necessity-if your arms are working, your windows should be, too! And unless your regulators are beyond repair, there's nothing that a little white lithium grease (combined with some good old-fashioned elbow grease) can't help. That said, if you can justify the expense, it's sure nice not having to continually crank them windows up and down!

A few years ago, I installed an Electric-Life cable-driven (screw-type) power window kit in my '53 Bel Air. At first, I was very hesitant to do so-not because I didn't want power windows in the car, but because somebody, somewhere, said something or other about these being inferior to replacement scissor-type regulators. Made no difference whether or not that was true, it had just lingered in the back of my mind. Fortunately, that fear was laid to rest after hearing one person say to the contrary. That individual happened to be the owner of a highly reputable custom glass shop, having installed numerous Electric-Life kits over the years. That simply instilled all the confidence I needed. And to this day, I've yet to encounter a single problem with the power windows.

So, despite my "basic" intents to do as little as possible to make due with the majority of projects, I did a little more than just entertain the idea of adding power windows in my '39 Chevy. For starters, I knew the existing components would require a complete rehab, and being as these aren't readily available replacement parts, well, the option was even more appealing. The only possible drawback I foresaw was that I'd have to use a "universal" type kit, as it's not common to find application-specific items as such for a truck of this age. As you will see here, it ended up taking some creative thinking in order to incorporate the Electric-Life EL1000 regulator assembly into the rather restrictive doors (the horizontal braces are a definite hindrance, but not impossible to overcome), however, when all was said and-most importantly-done, the kit performed better than anticipated.

Obviously, there's a little more to a power window installation than just the kit alone. Along with the glass itself, unless of course you've got decent door glass to begin with, new window channel (felt) is crucial. As well as being an Electric-Life dealer, Chevs of the 40's also offers complete channel kits for '37-54 Chevy trucks. Last but not least, there needs to be a means in which to activate the electric window regulators, which we commonly refer to as a "switch". All of this will be covered next month, as we have plenty to cover this time around with the kit install.