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Rat Rod Ready! 1948 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup

We cover a lot of old pickups on Barn Finds, why just yesterday this ’56 Studebaker surfaced, and one of the overarching questions with an old truck is what to do with it. There are so many ways to go, restore to stock, hot-rod, rat-rod, custom, you name it – the world’s your oyster! In this case, we have a 1948 Chevrolet 3100 that has already gone the rat-rod route so it’s not such of a “What to do with it”, it’s more of a “Would you want to own it?” situation. And that being the case, let’s see what’s really here.  This Chevy truck is located in Imperial, Missouri and is available, here on eBay for a current bid of $11,300 with twenty-eight bids tendered so far.

The seller is rather descriptive in covering this truck’s many facets but states, specifically, “It is a rat rod truck with rust in the usual spots, cab corners, and lower doors, etc, the frame is solid and was coated with Eastwood chassis saver…” It also has its fair share of patina that looks to have been clear coated. We are advised that its slammed stance is “static” and not adjustable and the usual creases, dents, surface rust, and whatever else are present and preserved. What is sort of slipped into the listing is the fact that this 3100 body is sitting on an S-10 chassis. And actually, this Chevy is one of the better examples of this type of treatment that I have discovered, I like how it looks. The steel wheel treatment, combined with their offset and depth, is just perfect for the vibe that this truck projects.

Power is provided by a 350 CI Chevy V8 which is connected to either a Turbo-Hydramatic 350 or 400 (depends on which line in the listing you read) automatic transmission. This rat rod’s driving characteristics are described as “…runs good and such a blast to drive. It has pleasant road manners, drives straight and cruises nicely down the road“. Equipment includes front disc brakes, power steering (which has a leak), and an aluminum radiator.

The rat-rod readiness of this truck extends indoors and it’s an eye-catching visual with its Indian blanket seat cover, burlap door panel, and dash-mounted fan. The original rusty dash and screw-driver handle turn signal lever help to complete the image. I’m not certain about the purpose of the dash-mounted license plate unless it serves as a glove-box door, nevertheless, I like it!

Considering the condition of the cargo bed, this ratty old rod could be used to do some light hauling. Want to see more? Here you go! OK, no questions to ask about what to do with it, just buy, drive and enjoy, right?


  1. RKS

    I dig what they did with the chassis and drivetrain but I hope the next owner gets rid of the rat in this rod and gives it some dignity. I’d give it paint and an interior that doesn’t smell through pictures.

    Like 13
  2. Mike W_H_ Mike W_H_ Member

    I’m totally over the Rad Rod craze. That said, this truck needs a ton of work to bring it into the 21st century. I need a farm truck. This would work.

    After the wheels fall off, I’d sell it to Texas Metal’s Bill Carlton. He could put the $$$$ into it, then sell it for $80,000. It’s what he does.

    Like 2
  3. JW454

    I’d rather have the one in the background….. before it suffers the same fate as this one.

    Like 3
  4. Stanley

    Not a fan of the over patina, i am glad to see he upgraded the brakes and added seat belts. These details are usually overlooked leaving death traps

    Like 3
    • Claudio

      The chassis was upgraded to an s10 and thats what improved the braking and handling …

      Like 2
  5. Lowell Peterson

    Not a fan of shiny rust. Did one S10 swap! It works but better to just do the mods to an original. Lookin forward to the soon end of ratrod as display peices. At the donuts and derelicts in Huntington Beach Ca we rush to look at each one just to ridicule and wonder why when we see one! And to remind each other that we never rode around in rods like this!

    Like 3
  6. Joe Haska

    It is your point of view, but this is not my definition of a RAT ROD. I think it is a well thought out build and is fine as is , or it could go to the next level. I was a little surprised at interior and under the hood. Allot of these builds go to the nth degree, on the interior and engine comportment and undercarriage. That’s not necessary or could be done later . From what I have seen the S-10 makes it a great driver. I think the Patina fits the build ,I am just not a fan of the clear coat, seems like an oxymoron. Bottom line cool truck.

    Like 1
    • Jim ODonnell Staff

      Rat Rod is the seller’s definition, not mine, and I generally go with how the seller describes his vehicle.


      Like 0
  7. grant

    You absolutely do something with it, starting with sandblasting that stupid clear coat off the rust giving it a proper paint job.

    Like 0
  8. Dennis6605

    grant….I don’t think you would have to sandblast. Just go over it lightly with a scotch bright pad.

    Like 0

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