Darlene's 10x10 Page

Hi, I'm a 1954 GMC Deuce and a half.


I've got 10 wheels, and all of them should be able to drive. I've served my Country, then The National Forrest Service, a Volunteer Fire Department, and now I'm retiring to the CyberRanch.


1/10/99 Just about a week after Willy came to the CyberRanch, we have another addition. My friend, Lew the Tow Truck Man of Reisel Roadside Towing, remembered a truck he thought I might really like. He was quite correct. The 10 wheel drive Deuce and a half was donated to a local fire company. The truck is a little old for their needs and besides, they made a huge tanker out of a semi. Not really needed any more, Darlene was just sitting outside of the fire house. Much of her prior life must have been spent under cover, as there is only surface rust

Specs courtesy of Memphis Trucking, a great supplier of Military parts and vehicles


Engine
Model.........GMC 302
Type .....Valve in Head, 4 Cy., 6 cyl
Horsepower...130 at 3200 RPM
Displacement ...........302 cu. in.
Bore ....................................4"
Stroke ................................ 4"
Oil Capacity ..................11 qt.

Axles
Type..........Hypoid, Single-Reduction, Full Floating
Rat ...........................................6.17:1
Tandem Rating ..................26,000 lbs.

Radiator
Capacity...................... 22 qt.

Brakes
Wagner-Bendix: Midland.....................Air Actuated Hydraulic
Parking - .........................External Contracting Band, 87 Sq. In

Steering
Saginaw................... Model 552-D-6

Fuel
Holley Carburetor...................Model 885-FFG

Long Wheel Base - 156"
Cab to Center of Tandem.......................................84"
Cab to End of Frame .................................143 1/2"

Electrical System
Ignition, Starting, Lights.......12

Short Wheelbase - 144"
Cab to Center of Tandem........................................72"
Cab to End of Frame ..................................117 1/2"

Transmission
Detroit Transmission...............Model 302-M
Dual Range Hydramatic Having 4 Speeds in Each Range

Weight
156" Wheelbase................11,000 lbs.

Transfer Case
GM..................................Ord. # 7411327
Ratio ............................. 1.16:1

Tire Size
9.00 x 20- 10 ply

Drive Shaft
MFG.......................... Spicer

Highway Speed
55 MPH



Darlene Runs !

2/21/99 While doing some maintenance today I found that Willy had bad right front wheel bearings. I remembered to grab two old batteries for trade in when I decided to run into Waco to AutoZone to get the bearings. Well, AutoZone didn't carry the bearings, but I did buy two large batteries. I believe they were called Group 49 or something like that. They have 850 amps and a big reserve. They don't quite fit Darlene's battery trays perfectly, but they do fit. After getting all four terminals hooked up, I found the ignition switch and one for the added electric fuel pump. What I couldn't find initially was a switch for the starter. I finally found it down on the transmission shifters. It's a big L-shaped lever that you pull back on. When I first pulled back on it, the engine cranked, but not as fast as I'd have expected with two brand new batteries. I thought maybe they weren't fully charged. What happened next was wonderful. The engine caught and fired a few times. I quickly poured 5 gallons of fresh gas with stabilizer into the gas tank. By using the choke I was soon able to get her running. She really didn't idle too well, so I pulled out the hand throttle and most kept blipping the pedal until she warmed up a bit. Micah figured out how to get the hood closed by pushing back on the support levers, so I dropped it into the low range. It was so great when this huge hulk began moving forward under her own power. I pulled around to the shop door, being very careful to go slowly at the end because there are absolutely no brakes. On the first pull up to the door, I hadn't turned quite sharp enough so I got to find out that low reverse works as well. We go air into that left front tire that slowly looses air. One out of ten isn't too bad. We backed away from the shop and started moving across the field, still in low range. I decided I'd take a little run down the road to my neighbor, Slick. I tried the higher range on the way across the field and made a bit of better time than in that really low range. Even though there was probably room to get around, I had Micah move his Cummins powered Dodge 4x4, because having no brakes is not a confidence inspiring situation. As I neared the end of the driveway, I again shifted back into low range so I'd have a better chance of stopping at the end of the driveway if a car was coming. Nothing was coming down the road, so I went back up into the road range as I pulled out of the driveway. The rpms built steadily and then suddenly the transmission upshifted with real authority. I'm still not sure if it has 3 or 4 gears, but it does shift up and down. As we rolled down the road, the ride had a real bounce to it. I imagine one or more of the tires had a real flat spot from all the sitting Darlene has been doing these last few years. On down the road I got slowed down in time to make the turn into Slick's driveway. It might have something to do with the header pipe being broken off, but Slick's wife and daughter ran out of the house as we pulled in. They said Slick had driven down the back of his field to the creek to go fishing, so we took off through the fields to find Slick. Darlene kept running better and better as we wound our way around the cow trails. I really believe this truck should be a pretty capable four wheeler if the trail isn't too tight. We finally found Slick and his friend Dan down by the end fishing hole. Slick had thought they were hearing his old Ford farm truck coming down, but Dan could tell that it was a six cylinder engine they were hearing. Dan spent a lot of time working on trucks just like Darlene under the employ of our Uncle Sam. I left Darlene at a fast idle as we climbed down the bank to see them. After a couple minutes, we heard Darlene stall out, so Micah ran up to turn off the fuel pump and the ignition switch. I had a bit of concern, but I felt fairly sure that we could get Darlene restarted again. After visiting a while, Slick said we could exit right out onto the road from where we were. This gave me a couple mile stretch to get back home. Darlene went nicely up through the gears and we actually went over 40 mph and there was definitely some left. It actually felt as though the tires had rounded out a bit, as the ride wasn't quite as bumping as when we first hit the road. When we arrived back at the CyberRanch, Goodwench came out to take a few Polaroids. She was finally able to see Darlene's inner beauty, so it was a great day all around.




3/14/99 Poured a bunch of brake fluid down into the master cylinder through the access hole in the floor. Seemed like the pedal got a bit of pressure, but it never built. After three cans, we lay down to look underneath. Sure enough, there is fluid dripping off the bottom of the backing plate on the right front set of rear wheels. Looks like that wheel will have to be pulled, so I go in to my box and get the 3/4" socket set. The incomplete set goes from 1 7/16" to 1 5/8", and the lugs need a 1 1/2". Looks like I've got a new addition to my shopping list.
4/1/99 I picked up a 3/4" drive 1 1/2" socket from Sears. I was able to get the outer wheel off by putting a pipe on the end of my breaker bar. The inner wheel is held by studs that require a 13/16" square head. All I have for this is an open end wrench and that won't budge any of them. I've sprayed them well with penetrant and have been driving Darlene around some in hopes they will break loose. I guess it will probably end up requiring heat. At least Darlene has been starting well and running pretty good.
4/19/99 Last weekend I bought a real lug tool and a had a couple of guys help me with the remaining lug nuts. With a four foot bar over the handle, we eventually got most all of them broken loose.
6/26/99 Got the axle pulled out and brakes removed on the forward right rear.
10/25/99 Stopped by Memphis Trucks in Carlisle PA on my back to Texas from my Dad's house in PA. Bought a couple of wheel cylinders, a few wheel cylinder rebuilding kits, some brake shoes, and other assorted small parts and manuals.



Email me at goodwrench@cyberranch.org
Email me.

Y'all please come back soon.

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Updated 11/19/99

Created 1/10/99