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350-Equipped: 1956 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup

Classic Pickups are prime candidates for custom builds. The chassis engineering and a generally cavernous engine bay allow an owner to slot something large and powerful under the hood without compromising structural integrity. A previous owner commenced turning this 1956 Chevrolet 3100 into such a vehicle, but the project has now stalled twice. It could be a case of “third time lucky” if the successful bidder feels motivated. This Pickup is listed here on eBay in Everest, Kansas. Bidding has climbed to $1,095, which is below the reserve. The seller also provides a BIN option of $6,300 for enthusiasts intent on getting the ball rolling immediately.

My first thought upon viewing the supplied shots of this Pickup was how ideal its current appearance is for a ratrod build. The exterior features loads of character (I won’t use the “p” word), and applying a protective clearcoat to protect the appearance would leave the vehicle looking distinctive. It is unclear what paint shade it initially wore, but the Maroon in the bed might be an accurate guide. There is the typical rust in the lower cab corners and a few spots in the floor, but the rest of the body looks rock-solid. It sits on a later C10 chassis (vintage unknown), and the new owner must attach it properly as part of the build. The bed seems sound, the glass is a mixture of good and bad pieces, and the Pickup rolls on a mix of what appear to be new wheels.

The Pickup’s interior is a sad and sorry sight, requiring a total restoration to present at its best. However, this is where this classic could come into its own if the winning bidder strives for a ratrod build. Restoring the inside of this classic would be a straightforward project that most enthusiasts could tackle in a home workshop. With the painted surfaces refreshed, the chrome refurbished by a plater, a new seatcover, and a rubber mat of carpet on the floors, it could look stunning without costing a king’s ransom. If the buyer preserved the exterior in its current form, the contrast could help this gem to stand out.

The previous owner commenced their custom build by ditching the original engine in favor of a 350ci V8. The small-block is bolted to an automatic transmission, but its type is unclear. These motors leave plenty of scope for improvement, meaning the new owner should have no trouble squeezing more than 300hp out of the engine without spending a fortune. The seller believes the engine is healthy. They have coaxed it into life and include an embedded video of it running in their listing. However, a twenty-two-second video with poor sound quality makes it challenging to assess it properly. If it requires a rebuild, that could be the ideal time to upgrade items like the camshaft to achieve an improved power output.

This 1956 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup is a promising project, and the new owner will only be limited by their imagination and the size of their budget. Regular readers will know my preference for originality, but I feel that a ratrod approach could be ideal in this case. Do you agree, or do you have a different vision? The BIN price is another factor, and some may find hitting the button irresistible to guarantee they take this one home. Would you do that?


  1. Howard A Member

    Gol dang, I do declare, how BarnFinds does it, and why I stay tuned. Eventually, EVERY vehicle I ever had will show up here. Fat chance, I’ve had hundreds, still, fun to see them again. Let’s see( searching for time frame),,mid-70s, I had my MGB, but wanted something with some guts. I found a truck just like this I just had to have. It was very similar, except, drop front axle, fender well exit headers, and a 327, 4 barrel, car 4 speed, it was about as opposite the MG one could get. I suppose that was the attraction, as the MG had gotten stale( and rusty). That memory was found under the “most stupid purchases” category. It was a total POS,( compared to the trusty MG) and didn’t have it long. I wonder what gear that column shift position is? Kidding, but at $2 grand, I think we’ve seen the exploitation of classic pickup trucks waning, and for good reason. Remember my GMC squarebody? It was on a local car lot for months, not sure the price, but it’s back at the guys house I sold it to. Nobody wants it. A nationwide ad( like here) would produce better results, but apparently, a clean classic pickup is of no attraction to Colorado folks. So much for the squarebody hype, eh? This is a great find, merely for the condition. I’d get a 6 popper( 6 in a row, makes ‘er go), and ditch the V8, make it original.

    Like 0
  2. Maggy

    I’d do a custom build on it.Looks like lot of work , time and $ will be required.Money pit pretty much imo.For me I’d pass.I don’t like finishing other peoples projects as I’ll bet all sorts of stuff will pop up. Glwts.

    Like 4
    • Gary Steingass

      This is just what I’m looking for, a Rat Rod pickup trk. But only if it could be had, cheap, like the current bid, or close to it ! I had a 63 Chevy stepside, but this time I’m looking for an older one, like this 58 Chevy, it doesn’t hurt to dream

      Like 1
  3. Wait A Title And Engine Too?

    A real price on working project with a title?

    Someone separate the frame and drive train and just offer a worse body without floors as I am not used to packages😝

    Like 1
  4. Steve Martin

    I’d do it up real nice in black enamel and I love the slight gasser look. As for the 350 well I know a trick or two to really wake her up. I’d also eliminate the automatic and go with a five speed stick and a four ten rear end. I love this truck. And with a bit of coin and a lot of love it could be WOW 😲

    Like 2
  5. Don Sieger

    My Dad had one for his filling station, it had a 265 cubic inch small block with the power pack option, 4 barrel carb and better heads with an original 4 speed hydramatic transmission. That truck was pretty quick and would chirp the tires every time it shifted. Good tranny, wish that I would have bought it from Dad.

    Like 3
  6. Noel

    Too much money for a Rust bucket

    Like 2
  7. Matthew Dyer

    Poor truck. A shell of a classic with nothing going for it. Yard art art best.

    Like 0
  8. C Force

    There is some serious metal work in store for the new owner.That 350 might already be built and cammed out,it has a high rise single plane intake.Made for making power at 3500rpm and above.probably a 90% chance that’s a TH350 it’s hooked up to.could be real nice with alot of $$$$$ put in it.

    Like 1
  9. jdb


    Like 0
  10. MGM

    Good potential. Owned one just like it in 74. A 235-with col shift. Had F-R bumpers.Had one hellova rear, it melted the rears till shift.Ran great. Should’ve kept that one. It wuza 57. Thinking about this one. Watching price. Hoping it stays below 27.

    Like 1
  11. Bama

    First off, patina is neglect. This old truck has had its share of neglect for a long time. Looks like a good start to a nice cruiser. Body work and paint inside and out with a new seat and it could be a nice ride.Old trucks have gotten expensive, this looks like a decent deal.

    Like 1
  12. Midway

    Just finishing up a 3 year restoration project on a 68 F250 highboy I will say things popping up is an understatement. The metal work and chassis labor will put you in the poor house. Interior parts another 6K. If this can be scored for 4K it has potential

    Like 2
  13. Dusty

    American made steel. I’d rather have it instead of some new rice rocket. Pure A Mexican classic. Nothing better

    Like 1
    • Greg in Texas

      That’s a lot for what can only be properly done gutting it and starting over. I’d say it’s $3k to the right person with a vision to do something more intelligent than dumping excess weight and displacement to pretend that’s still a ‘thing’.

      Like 0
  14. Greg in Texas

    Blank canvas. Myself I’m taking the Toyota GM ties as an excuse to install a V8 fuel injected 4.0 Lexus with 5 speed automatic transmission. There’s no practical way to make this handle well and adding weight to get traction on the rear end is utter nonsense and self defeating. Objectively stating. And I’d do what needs doing to suspension and brakes. So a Lexus pickup truck is what I’d be using to keep and confound all cliques of car fans. It might even get 22mpg quietly passing modern 4 Cylinder pickups not getting much better gas mileage due to excess weight of modern safety requirements.

    Like 0
  15. John

    1000$ would be pushing it. Over 6k… WOW

    Like 0
  16. Dave

    Folks here are out of touch. Do yourself a favor and price out this truck if you bought all new metal, which you would still have to prep before painting. The bare shell, new, is easily over $15K before shipping. If you focus on the interior, which should take about 15 minutes to remove, and stick to a rat rod build, like Adam suggested, this truck is a steal. It’s already on a much better chassis that you can actually drive on a highway. It’s very similar to my ’58 GMC, almost identical actually. This is not at all overpriced.

    Go ahead. Get Mad…

    Like 0

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