Ed Brouillet’s 1935 Chevrolet Suburban
By the mid-1930s, the automotive industry was providing a means for city people
to get out in the country and vice versa. When Chevrolet introduced the Suburban
in 1935, they enabled entire families to make long distance trips with relative
ease. Alternately termed “Carry-all Suburban” or “Suburban Carryall,” this
vehicle was basically a Canopy Express with holes punched in the sides for
windows and two rear bench seats. Unique to the Suburban was the pickup style
tailgate instead of the Canopy Express’s side-hinged doors.
Ed Brouillet of Fairfield, Conn., purchased his Suburban in 1994 from Walter
Deck of Ridge Farm, Ill., a professional restorer who rebuilt it from the frame
up. Deck had bought the truck from a General Motors executive in Scottsdale,
Ariz., and, after restoring it, drove it to a vintage truck show in California
and then on to Oregon before returning home.
Ed’s Suburban is powered by
Chevrolet’s “stovebolt” inline-6, with overhead valves, 206.8 cid, a three
main-bearing crank, splash oiling, a Carter 1-bbl downdraft carburetor, and it
produces 68.5 bhp at 3200 rpm. The transmission is a floor-shifted, syncromesh
3-speed manual with a semi-floating rear axle housing 4.11:1 gears, and the
cable-operated 4-wheel brakes are mechanical. It rides on an I-beam front axle,
and both front and rear axles use semi-elliptic leaf springs for suspension and
lever-action hydraulic shock absorbers. Ed substituted an 8-volt tractor battery
to spin the starter more quickly and brighten the lights without converting to a
full 12-volt system.
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Dec04/Jan05 2004 issue.