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Cars > Crazyfast79TA’s Garage > Blog > 1995 GMC 3500 Rally Van (Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha) > Maybe Giving Bertha A New Name

 

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Crazyfast79TA

M –47
Bovey, Minnesota
United States

 

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Maybe Giving Bertha A New Name

By Crazyfast79TA

Filed under: 1995 GMC 3500 Rally Van (Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha)

I was the one that gave our van the name "Big Bertha". Michelle didn't really take to that name very well. I'm thinking about changing it to "Battle Wagon". It's been through a lot and faired pretty well. It gave us a scare this past week-end trying to drive it to Duluth in a winter storm. Anybody that's had a full size van knows where I'm heading. These things don't have much traction in snow and ice conditions. When you find black ice at 50 MPH, you're lucky when all you do is slide off the road and into a ditch. God picked the right time and place for that to happen. It was a long straight stretch of road. We made it through the curvy part of the road just fine. We also past the woods. Where we went off wasn't a deep ditch and there weren't trees close to the side of the road. The other side of the road was a different story. A very deep ditch with trees on the way to the bottom. That would've been bad news. But anyway, here's my reasoning for wanting to change the name to "Battle Wagon". When Bradee tried to miss a deer a couple years back, he found woods. He was stuck between 2 trees and crashed straight into another. When we were making our first "move Mike to Minnesota" trip, we had another close call. We had my S-10 on a tow-dolly loaded full of my stuff. The cab was filled with things that couldn't get wet. The bed was loaded with totes full of car parts and car parts that were too big to fit in totes. The van was packed with all kinds of things I had in storage. There was only enough room in back for Dustyn to have enough room to sit on part of the one seat we left in the back of the van. It was packed top to bottom, front to rear! She was swaying and wallowing all over. It was windy while we were loading up. It started raining by the time we were done and heading for the highway. Once on the highway, it started snowing. It snowed all the way through Indiana and through Chicago. As we got into Wisconsin, there was winter storm warning on the radio. The hills in Wiscansin would've been a challenge by themselves, but a snow storm!?!? We saw cars and pick-up trucks sliding and spinning off the road. The van slipped but the S-10 on the back kept us straight! I was really impressed by that. But all that weight and driving conditions weren't kind to the transmission. Going up a steep hill, overdrive literally blew out with a bang. By the time we got to Duluth, we were down to 2 gears and 35 MPH. We still had over 75 miles to get home. We kept plugging away at it and made it. It sat for a year before I got a good used transmission for it. It's been used to haul building material, camping gear, wreathing boughs, car parts and just about anything that would fit in the back. She's still running strong! It almost deserves the respect of a war veteran. Well maybe not that much, but at least some respect. It may be big, old and ugly, but it's still going without signs of giving up yet. Maybe a name change is due.

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classicfirebird1979’s Profile Photo
classicfirebird
1979
Dec 19, 2012 at 7:30 pm
I have an Astro Van that serves the same purpose right now too, Great for storage...but my wife wants it gone ! smile image
 

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Cars > Crazyfast79TA’s Garage > Blog > 1995 GMC 3500 Rally Van (Battle Wagon aka Big Bertha) > Maybe Giving Bertha A New Name

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