Fully restored 1971 Chevy pickup wins multiple awards

Staff writer

Wayne Ollenburger lives and breathes automobiles. He works as a service technician at Midway Motors in Hillsboro and on the weekends, he sometimes takes his 1971 Chevrolet Cheyenne 10 pickup to compete in antique and classic car and truck shows.

“Work and play makes for a full day,” Ollenburger said. “I’ve always liked vehicles, they’re my main thing.”

He said he knew this particular truck a long time ago before it was ever restored.

“My neighbor, Bob Jantz, and his son, Kevin, originally owned and restored the truck,” he said. “Bob is a good guy. They took off the cab and the frame, actually everything was completely off the body.”

Ollenburger said he watched Jantz and son put the truck through a systematic restoration, in which they returned the truck body to its original form. He even helped them move pieces of the body around their shop while they worked on it.

The truck body was all-original, he said. There were no holes or rust on it, and the only thing they had to replace was the battery carrier.

“Bob used to work for Irv Schrader so he knew was he was doing,” Ollenburger said. “It was a good project for him and his son. I really admired what they were doing. When they said they wanted to sell it I opened my eyes twice.”

His pickup has a 402 big block engine that purrs like a lion when he revs it up.

“They punched out the engine, now it does a little over 30,000,” he said. “The cam is more progressive too, which adds more horsepower than it originally had.”

Other original features include automatic transmission, power steering, power front disc brakes, factory A/C, a tachometer, tilt steering wheel all of which were specialty items back in 1971, Ollenburger said.

“I like the original look,” he said. “There is new glass and rubber in the cab. I don’t like adding too much chrome like other guys do.”

To complete the original look, he added rally tires with white lettering and had a true dual exhaust installed, after he bought it in September 2012. At that time, it only had 7,250 miles on it.

“It’s special truck, you know what I mean, I’m proud of it,” Ollenburger said. “I have never seen another one like it in this area that is in this good of condition.”

Because of its rarity, Ollenburger takes especially good care of it. He cleans it after he drives it and he doesn’t really drive it that much.

“I do take it around sometimes like when I drove it in the county fair parade here in Hillsboro,” he said. “But I don’t plan to drive it out in the rain.”

In his first year owning the pickup he took it to four different car and truck shows and brought home trophies from three events.

His Chevy took first place in the Classic Truck Division at the Antique and Classic Car and Truck Show June 15 in Goessel. It also received People Choice Award at the same competition, won a top 20 award in the McPherson Area Cruisers competition, and was a class winner in a car show in Newton.

 

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