1941 Chevrolet G506 (THE ARMY TRUCK)
Last updated Jan 28, 2014
got two g506s one good one with a title and the other is a parts truck on 12-14-13 for $1800
During WWII four companies made most of the 1½ ton trucks for military service; International (M-3L-4) made specifically for the Navy and Marines, Ford (GTB), Dodge (WC62) and Chevy (G506). Of the manufacturers, Chevy by far, supplied the most 1 ½ ton trucks during the war. For the Chevy, G506 refers to all 1940 – 1945 Chevy 1 ½ ton trucks although individual models were further designated by their configuration (a dump is a G7106, cargo is a G7107, etc ).
Chevy labeled the trucks “Vehicles of Victory” during the war in the many ads Chevy ran promoting their war effort. About 160,000 Chevy 1 ½ ton trucks were manufactured with trucks going to the Army and Army Air Corps, but the largest share was sent to allied forces, particularly Britain and Russia. Many of these trucks also served base duty and in the states, this is the origin of most of the trucks surviving today. Unfortunately, the army did not keep or retain records that would make tracking down the initial assignments of the trucks possible. Any history you will have is going to be anecdotal or records kept with the truck and owners itself.
With 4wd, a 4-speed non-synchromesh transmission and reliable 83hp, 235 cid engine, the trucks were used for almost every task at hand. Common uses included towing artillery, firefighting, hauling troops and supplies, and the multitude of tasks associated with engineering battalions. The truck also came with special body configurations, for a variety of specialized tasks such a fire fighting, bomb supply, and communications.
Driving and Servicing
The Chevy 1 ½ ton provides the “big truck” look and feel without the size and weight of the deuce and a half (aka GMC CCKW). If speed is your thing, don’t look here. These trucks are as much tractor as truck, and have a top speed of only around 48mph and the transmission is not synchromeshed so each shift must be double-clutched. Fortuantely the tranny is rugged and well built, and can endure practice and occasional grinding of the amateur. With four-wheel-drive, turning radius is somewhat compromised as well. They are tough however, and will endure abuse and conditions that would stop most civilian trucks.
Parts are available if you are willing to do the research. The Chevy 235 cid engine was made up to 1962 and any will bolt in without modification. Starting in 1952 the 235 went from Babbitt bearings to insert bearings to match the GM line, which had insert bearings back in the ‘40’s.
235 inline 6
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