The Chevy may have the heart of a beast but it's got the body of a beauty. This body style has become an iconic classic over the past 60 years for one reason: it's great looking. Although the raw material required some replacement and repair, Mike was smart not to start radically carving up the stock sheetmetal. He replaced the front fenders with steel reproductions from Firewall Classics. The reproduction running boards, rear fenders, front grille assembly, both bumpers, rear roll pan, and all the glass were provided by Chevy Duty. The firewall, cowl, and vent covers are from Bitchin Products. Mike welded the stock hood together and smoothed it. Most of the trim was intact when the truck was purchased, but was replaced for better chromed pieces. Mike swapped the door handles and headlights, and added modified '32 Ford taillights and a third brake light. Most of the bed needed replacing as well. The new floor is oak with stainless dividers from Chevy Duty. The stake holes were covered and smoothed. Santa Fe model rims from Billet Specialties complete the external appearance of the Chevy, and were matched with Michelin tires, measuring P215/50R17 and P245/50R18.
We mentioned something about a 911 Targa. Mike owned one sometime between his drag racing days and now, so when it was time to pick the paint for the '47, he chose PPG Metallic Burgundy, the same color worn by his Porsche. It probably takes a little more material to cover a '47 Chevy truck, but, as you can see, New Concepts in Plano did a great job. Since these photos were taken, James Crawford (who passed away recently) added some gold pinstriping around the wheelwells.
The Porsche influence isn't restricted to the exterior. Dee's Trim Shop, also in Plano, covered the Corbeau buckets in the same type of saddle-colored Porsche leather Mike sat on as a 911 owner. The leather extends to the dash. Classic Instruments gauges include a speedometer and a quad combo. The custom steering wheel, on an ididit column, also got the leather treatment. The headliner matches in looks, but is actually more economical vinyl, which extends down the rear of the cab to the floor. The carpet is contrasting burgundy. Mike built the console that fits in place between the seats. Fresh air is provided by the Vintage Air A/C setup hidden behind the radio grille, and to a Specialty Power Windows kit. The radio was upgraded to a Custom Autosound head unit with a hidden 10-disc CD changer.
The buildup was a 4-year project for Mike. Although he did most of the mechanical work himself, he thanks the guys at Sachse Hot Rod Shop for contributing to the project. They welded the front end, plumbed the brakes, helped with parts, and answered a lot of questions.
Now Mike's having fun taking the '47 to shows in his area and also meeting with fellow Chevy/GM truck enthusiasts in the Picks N Panels of North Texas. Future club members might include his grandkids. They aren't old enough to drive, but Mike says they're already eyeing the truck for the day they will be.