Saturday, May 30, 2020

1965 Chevrolet C20 Stepside Barnfind Rescue Part 1

Radiator leak? "Park it in the shed." That conversation happened in Alabama around 1980. The one-owner, family farm truck was put out to pasture. Well, to be specific, parked beside the pasture under the shade of a tin shed. In a blink, 40 years rolled by. Green paint became more rust than shine. The 1965 Chevy C20, long-wheelbase, stepside truck (that's a mouthful) was forgotten.

Busy, busy
Business and another home to take care of in the city put the old truck in the rearview. New vehicles were bought and sold by the owners but
 nary a lick was hit by the C20’s 230-cubic-inch inline-six cylinder engine. Likewise, the three-on-the-tree column shift appears to have minimal wear.

The 1965 Chevy C-20 steering wheel and instrument panel is in much better shape than the exterior.
The 1965 Chevy C-20 steering wheel and instrument panel is in much better shape than the exterior.

Bare bones, heavy duty
This is not a modern era heavy duty rig, but a capable hauler for its time. The C20 was Chevrolet’s model name for their three-quarter ton trucks. When big jobs required more of a “Hoss” to do the work. C20s have greater payload and towing capacity than C10 trucks. Equipped with 8-lug wheels, heavier duty springs, and better load handling under the bed with a full floating rear suspension. 

A 230-cubic-inch straight six engine with 120 Net horsepower at 3600 RPM is all the pulling power you could get with the base engine. That engine still sits under the rust-baked hood. Three other engines were available. 292-Straight-six, 283-V8, and a 327-V8.

New life for the C20
Keith Lively, our finder of much junk, can’t help but trip over unbelievable deals. They find him. This sweet C20 is the latest stepside to follow him home. Remember the 1976 C10 Scottsdale Sport? He got her running and spiffed up before trading her on a tri-five Chevy.
I’m hoping the C20 stays original, longbed and all. Elbow grease can go a long way toward making this farm truck a show stopper. Stay tuned!

Jody Potter
— Junkyard Life

Did a leaky radiator sideline the C20? That's the story we got. Radiator is long gone either due to theft or a failed trip to the radiator repair shop.

Wood rails on the bed equals farm truck.

Windshield is caked with decades of dirt.

Bench seat shows no sign of wear or damage.

Steel dashes made people feel safer in 1965. Things have changed. Those new dashes won’t be around in 55 years but maybe you will?

I won’t hesitate to believe that we are looking at the original, factory-sprayed Light Green Chevy paint.

Even the tires look period correct for a truck parked 40 years. We hope to get this one running soon. Stay tuned.

Do you have a classic or muscle car barn find? Send us details and we’re on the way! 
Send emails to Jody Potter at or Ron Kidd at

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