Stunning Restoration: 1953 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup

Most of the older Pickups we see at Barn Finds tend to be project vehicles requiring varying amounts of work. Less common are completed restorations, especially ones that present as beautifully as this 1953 Chevrolet 3100. While it probably isn’t perfect, its overall condition guarantees that it will attract admiring crowds wherever it goes. Its next journey could be to a new home because the owner has listed it for sale here on eBay. The 3100 is located in Polk City, Florida, and with a BIN of $24,500, the listing has already attracted thirty-eight watchers.

The 3100 makes a bold statement in Mariner Blue, with Jet Black fenders and Pure White Wheels. The seller doesn’t indicate when the Pickup received its restoration, but it seems to have been treated with respect since. They rate the paint as at least an 8/10, although they state it could be considered higher. It shines magnificently, with no significant flaws. The panels are remarkably straight for a workhorse of this age. There are no dings or dents, and any panel repairs appear to have been performed to a high standard. The best news for potential buyers is its structurally sound state. The floors and frame are spotless, while the usually prone areas like the lower cab corners and cowl are clean. The restorer added new bed timber, and it seems that this classic hasn’t carried any loads since. There are no scratches or scuffs, just pristine wood that looks extremely classy. The chrome sparkles under the Florida sun, and the glass appears flawless.

The 1953 model year marked the last where 3100 buyers could order their new Pickup equipped with the 216.5ci “Thriftmaster” six-cylinder engine. While not considered a rocket by today’s standards, it still delivered 92hp and 176 ft/lbs of torque. The Thriftmaster’s power feeds to the rear wheels via a three-speed manual transmission, allowing the 3100 to easily carry its designated ½ ton payload. The engine bay presents well but is probably not as nice as other aspects of this classic. However, this aspect of the Chevy is more about mechanical health than good looks. The seller indicates the carburetor leaks when the engine is running but includes a rebuild kit allowing the buyer to tackle that issue. Otherwise, there are no problems to report. The Pickup runs and drives well, the transmission shifts smoothly, and the brakes feel great. With the carburetor issue addressed, this classic will be ready for its next journey to a Cars & Coffee.

The tidy presentation continues when we open the doors and inspect the Pickup’s interior. The seat wears a non-standard cover, and while it looks excellent, a couple of minor marks prevent it from achieving perfection. The wheel exhibits some wear, but there are no cracks. Its condition is within keeping for a workhorse of this vintage, but there are kits available to return it to a factory-fresh state. The rubber mat is immaculate, as are the dash and remaining upholstered surfaces. The Mariner Blue exterior theme carries to the interior steel surfaces, and once again, they shine brightly. The seller indicates that everything works as it should, although the buyer needs to connect the heater. A factory AM radio provides entertainment on the move, removing the boredom factor from long journeys.

Apart from a few minor details, this 1953 Chevrolet 3100 seems to need nothing. The seller admits it isn’t perfect, but its condition still rates above average. Achieving perfection is a relative term because no matter how stunning a restoration may be, going over the vehicle with a fine-toothed comb will uncover a defect. That the owner encourages in-person inspections is significant because that indicates they have complete confidence in the product they offer. I do not doubt that it will find a new home pretty quickly, and I admit that if circumstances were different, it is another classic I would like to find in my garage. Do you feel the same?


  1. geomechs geomechs Member

    A ‘53 model, just like me! It’s feet DO look a lot better than mine feel. Just drop it off at my place. I’ll give it a good home. But don’t expect it to be pampered. It will haul the beer to the picnic but it will also haul engine blocks to the machine shop and might even haul a load of sheep dooey for the garden. Some might disagree but then, that’s what it was built for…

    Like 13
    • Howard A Member

      Hey you old fart, quit complaining, that’s MY job here. Just because there’s a little snow on the roof,,,um, I forgot the rest, but I would tend to disagree on what’s next for this truck. I do agree what it was created for. For many after the war(s), this was for many farms, the truck “Pa” rolled into the farm with, usually their only vehicle. It literally did it all. Today, this is nothing more than a novelty item, relegated to the Walmart run for shock value, but this old gals workin’ days are long gone.
      In my usual demeanor, is it worth $25g’s? To me? Of course not, but in the day of $4 dollar boxes of crackers, who knows. Outstanding restoration, I’m so glad SOMEONE in this bakocked( to me) world chose to keep it this way, and not the much more desirable “LS, clown wheel, puffy interior” route, however, there’s still time, and someone with deep pockets, and no conscience, would have no problem turning it into one. I’d bet many wouldn’t even know how to start this, it DID require some fancy footwork.

      Like 13
  2. Dave

    Now that I can see again after that HUGE eye roll…

    So there it is, ready for the museum. So now finally the rest of us can hotrod the rest of them without all the “I wish it was 50 years ago” drama queens moaning about originality.

    Like 4
  3. RexFox Member

    When a seller is asking near top dollar, but is passing on supposedly simply jobs (carb and heater) to the next owner, I tend to suspect that these simple jobs will be much more involved (like maybe the heater core is toast, etc.). Otherwise, why don’t they just fix these two ‘simple’ items. Like Geomechs, if this were my truck, I would keep it clean and shiny, but it would also be used for hauling jobs. I would however, throw down a tarp before loading sheep dooey.

    Like 9
  4. PJ

    is the engine touching the firewall? or is it just very close? Is it supposed to be that close?

  5. Roy Adame

    If you don’t get rid of it let me know I’ll give you an offer thanks

  6. douglas hunt

    Love the Mariner Blue, oh man if I was looking for one of these it would be this one……

  7. LCL

    Is the heater bypassed? OK for Florida.
    My Dad did that on our ’54 in Connecticut. Not so great there. My brother then used that truck in New Hampshire for years, but he liked the cold.
    Seems like a restored vehicle is a journey, not a destination.
    The next owner can get to it.

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Keep me in the conversation via email. Or subscribe without commenting.


WANTED 1958 Buick Special Wanted ‘58 Buick Coupe Special or Super Contact

WANTED 1967 Chevrolet C20 4×4 I need a rust-free cab for a ’67 small rear window C20 4×4. Contact

WANTED 1977 Dodge Dodge Aspen RT Peferred driver, super PAC edition, fixer-upper. Contact

Submit Your Want Ad