Post Barn Find: 1964 Chevrolet Suburban

So what do you do once you come across that barn find vehicle you’ve been seeking? One buyer’s idea is shown here; a mildly customized 1964 Chevrolet Suburban that spent its early career as a fire department vehicle. Now it’s listed for sale here on eBay where bidding has driven the price up to $15,700 as I write. The Suburban is now located in Eden, Maryland after spending its working career in Pennsylvania.

Here’s a picture of the Suburban when it was still in service with the Bryn Athyn Fire Company. The seller boasts that the vehicle has never spent a night outside, and if you look at the condition of the Company’s current fire-fighting equipment and the pride shown, I can believe it. Although there’s a detailed history of the fire engines on their website, they don’t spell out the history of the support vehicles such as this one. Interestingly enough, a GM product is still used as a support unit as seen in their website cover picture.

Love the front-end styling on this generation of GM pickup, and it’s obvious that a lot of care has gone into the condition of this truck! The seller tells us that the custom paint was applied over 20 years ago and that it’s not perfect up close; personally, I really like the color choice, and the later model truck wheels and raised white letter tires are a real cosmetic win for me. I’m sure there are many readers who would rather have the truck in its original configuration, but I for one find this type of early SUV as a useful tow and haul vehicle when equipped correctly–just the thing to show up at a vintage race with towing a suitably vintage racing car! However, as the seller notes, a brake upgrade may be in order as the original specification brakes (drums) are still on the car. Don’t view this as a slam on drums, but I would prefer some vented discs and a dual hydraulic system for towing.

Apart from a noted piece of carpet that needs regluing, the interior seems to be in nice shape. A glaring shortcoming for me purchasing the truck considering this is a custom vehicle is the lack of air conditioning–of course, it can be retrofitted quite easily considering the room available.

The drivetrain is no longer the original 283/Powerglide–it has been replaced with a 383-cubic-inch V-8 and a Turbohydro 350 automatic transmission. A lot of cool parts have been added to the engine, including an internally balanced crankshaft, Oliver rods, Ross pistons, ported and polished Dart Sportsman cylinder heads, Ferrera valves, a Competition Cams roller camshaft, a Victor Jr. intake, and an Edelbrock carburetor. The seller notes that some carburetor work may be necessary and I’d want to check into that further before purchasing the truck. However, if you are in the market for a stylish vintage SUV/tow vehicle, think about checking this Suburban out!

Comments

  1. geomechs geomechs Member

    I like this. I wouldn’t have wanted to keep the original color scheme and this looks good. I would’ve kept the original 283/Powerglide; maybe tweaking it just a little but going to the 383 is not what I would want for a trip across country. A-C might be highly desirable but definitely not mandatory. I wouldn’t bother when 2×60 still works today…

    Like 6
  2. bobhess bobhess Member

    Another truck done just right.

    Like 3
  3. That Guy

    Needs more pictures, unless I’m missing a link to more somewhere. Still, it looks terrific in the few there are. This paint scheme was an inspired choice.

    Like 3
  4. Michael Garner

    Beautiful Burban! I would most likely want to doll up the interior a little more to match up with the exterior, and yeah. A/C would be a good addition, but that is a bunch of space to cool down in a hot climate like the Southwest or South. The paint scheme is spot on even if it’s 20 years old.

    Like 1
  5. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    Really nice truck, I had a 66 Suburban back in the 70’s but with 250 six cylinder and three on the column. It was a great work truck that also served as a weekend hauler for kids to their various doings. I like what they’ve done to this one but like others a/c would be a must.

    God /bless America

  6. HC Member

    Just love it! Someone has cared for this one. Disc’s in front and Vintage air is all it needs IMO. Good find

  7. Kurt Member

    I love this. Like Bob said, truck done right.

  8. Bill West

    4 miles from my house and I’ve never seen it locally. Intrigued, reasonable price as well.

  9. chrlsful

    ’64’n still a 3dor I think. Fantastic metal faber here (breaks, benders, shears, english wheel, etc) has 1 he just made up/installed a 4th dor on YOU (Any1) could never tell is not oe. Is a strict passenger hauler. I’d see this (above) & see the work/jobs/income it could get. And go back to oe inc the big i6…

  10. Beel

    I had a 64 and got by just fine without A/C in California. Floor vents and wing vents provided great airflow. Except that one time when a bee got sucked in and stung the inside of my thigh!

    Those interior photos look as though they’re from the original brochure. Regardless, the interior on mine was never that nice.

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