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Username Post: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?        (Topic#57731)
Sharkbite 
Member
Posts: 12

Loc: Morrison, CO
Reg: 02-15-04
02-15-04 02:05 PM - Post#392589    

Folks, I'm buying a 1952 GMC pick up that is in remarkably good shape. It's a 3/4 ton with the 235 inline 6. The original wheels and tires are REALLY tall, and it has a 4.56 rear axle ratio. I'd really like to modernize the wheels, if I can find nice polished 8-bolts that'll fit. Going a little wider, like with a modern pick up tire, I'll also probably be shorter, making my 4.56 feel even SHORTER.

I'd like to know what the transmission is that's in the truck. It's a 4-speed manual. Anyone know what type of 4-speeds they used in 1952, and what the gear ratios are?

I'll definitely convert for small block V8 with an overdrive 5-speed, but in the meantime, I'd like to know what I've got in there now.

If anyone knows, please advise. Thanks.
1968 Corvette Convertible, 433 BBC/M211968 Firebird, 465 Poncho/TH400 1952 GMC 3/4 ton pick up, 235 inline 6/4-sp 1986 IROC-Z, 355 TPI/700R4


 
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Gene_Schneider 
Ultra Senior Member
Posts: 10972

Loc: Wisconsin..USA
Reg: 09-27-02
Re: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?
02-15-04 03:29 PM - Post#392590    
    In response to Sharkbite

First off an US made 1952 GMC 3/4 ton will not have a 235 Chevrolet engine.The original engine was a GMC 228.A very different engine.If it has a Chev. 235 engine it replaced the GMC at a later date.

The 4 speed truck transmission would have a very low 1st gear.This would be what is refered to as a stump puller.Top speed in that gear would be about 7 MPH.The ratios are as follows-1st gear-7.06, 2nd 3.59, 3rd 1.71, 4th 1 to 1...From this you can see they are "wide ratios" used for truck use.The same unit was used in 2 ton trucks.Its a very sturdy trans. and was new for 1948.Its syncronized in all but first gear (requires a complete stop to get into 1st gear without grinding).

There are later 4.11 rear ends that can be interchanged.
ChevGene 1934 Master sedan 1939 Master DeLuxe Town Sedan 1950 Styline DeLuxe Power Glide 1957 Nomad 283 PG 1963 Corvair Convertible


 
raycow 
Honored Member
Posts: 18480

Age: 71
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Reg: 11-26-02
Re: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?
02-15-04 10:45 PM - Post#392591    
    In response to Sharkbite

Your rear is probably an H052, which was used in one form or another up through 1972. You can get a 3.90 or 4.10 gearset from these guys
http://www.rearman.com/truck.htm
http://www.ring-pinion.com/products/product.asp
but for less money you can swap in something a lot more modern that will be easier to get parts for. Almost any 3/4 or 1 ton rear will take the same 8 lug wheels. It doesn't even have to be a GM product.

Ray
Bacon is the gateway drug for vegetarians - Bridget Lancaster


 
Sharkbite 
Member
Posts: 12

Loc: Morrison, CO
Reg: 02-15-04
Re: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?
02-16-04 05:49 AM - Post#392592    
    In response to raycow

Thanks for the info, guys. I can see the purpose of modernizing the rear end, especially if the original is an open diff. (Is it?)
It sounds like the 8-lug wheels off a more modern GM truck might fit this oldie, and would certainly look a lot better. Do you know what the original tire size is for this truck? All I know is, they're really really tall, and very skinny.
The engine is still a mystery. It doesn't seem to rev very high, but I can't really tell because there's no tach of course. But it feels like it's seeing 3000 to 3500 rpm comfortably. I'm not sure what the redline is on a 235.
You're right that it's not the original engine. I talked to the seller and he confirmed that the original engine was not worth rebuilding. There was a screwdriver embedded in the #1 piston, and it was running that way!!! The cam lobes were all nearly flat, and it ran, but barely.

On these old engines, how do you tell what you've got? Are there any good books on the subject? I'll go out and buy one today if you can recommend one.

Thanks so much.
1968 Corvette Convertible, 433 BBC/M211968 Firebird, 465 Poncho/TH400 1952 GMC 3/4 ton pick up, 235 inline 6/4-sp 1986 IROC-Z, 355 TPI/700R4


 
Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
Re: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?
02-16-04 06:59 AM - Post#392593    
    In response to Sharkbite

There's no one text that's going to provide all the answers to engine identification questions. Sure, there are some books which purport to contain all kinds of serial and casting numbers for certain makes, but one has to kind of "narrow the field" a bit first through some general observations.

If you were to post a couple photos, or describe a few key features (such as whether the rocker arm cover is flat on top or rounded, how is the rocker cover attached, is there an engine side pan and does it surround the spark plugs, where are the engine mounts attached, what side are the intake, exhaust and starter motor on, etc.), there are a number of folks who could point you in the generally correct direction. From that point, a check of engine serial numbers will enable you to tell exactly what year engine you have.

As to the original tire size: if what you describe as a 3/4-Ton '52 GMC is indded one of their 250 series models, the original tires would have been 700x17, six ply and would be mounted on multi-piece rims. This would agree with your observation that they appeared "tall and skinny" (I'd consider that to be normal for this type of truck, but that's probably due to my advanced age)!

Royer

 
Gene_Schneider 
Ultra Senior Member
Posts: 10972

Loc: Wisconsin..USA
Reg: 09-27-02
Re: What transmission in 1952 GMC pick up?
02-16-04 08:55 AM - Post#392594    
    In response to Sharkbite

The engine could be identified by the casting number-side of block may be behind starter-head casting number -under valve cover.There also is an engine number stamped in the flat verticle surface just behind the distibutor.The engine was designed to give it power between 3000 and 3600 RPM (not the max.RPM though).
With the 4.57 rear end and 17" tires the engine will be turning at about 3000 at 60 MPH.This would be about the dame as a 4,11 rear end and 6.00 -16 tires or 6.70 -15 tires.
The cab noise in a truck makes the engine very loud sounding and if it has the larger truck fan its
even worse.
ChevGene 1934 Master sedan 1939 Master DeLuxe Town Sedan 1950 Styline DeLuxe Power Glide 1957 Nomad 283 PG 1963 Corvair Convertible


 
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