1949 Little Caesar frame-off restoration/renovation
555 3rd. Street East
Jacksonville, FL 32206
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Thank you in advance for considering me. Let me tell you a little about myself.
My parents were Emil and Ed Sokolis from Sebastopol California who opened Sokolis Brothers Manufacturing Co. in 1946. They closed the shop around 1965, having designed and built about 2,000 of my brothers and sisters. They tell me that I was born about 1949 (maybe earlier) as indicated by my early model sequence number of 144.
Over the years I have lost touch with many of my siblings, so they tell me that I am among a very few that have survived.
I cannot tell you all the places that I have been, at my age we tend to forget, but I will tell you about my adopted parents and all that they have done for me.
They found me in Florida, (how I got here, I will never know) and to be honest I really felt neglected and was not in the best of shape, as you can tell from a few of the posted photos. I really did not want anyone to see the shape I was in.
Fortunately, my adopted parents saw something in me others did not, so let me tell you what all they did to give me a new life.
They performed what is know as a frame-off restoration /renovation and tried so hard to use as much original materials as were left of me, but I had lost so much over the years.
They made a tremendous number of upgrades so I could continue a new life without any issues from my past popping up again. they re-built my chassis, adding structural supports and welded all my joints (originally, they were all just bolted together). They sandblasted and powder coated my entire chassis so I will never rust again. My new subfloor is ¾” marine plywood, coated with a tuff-coat undercarriage protection system.
My new wood frame is quite different from the original plywood sheathing. They built a new 2x2 wood frame with ¾” solid popular along the outside skirting and top so I would be very stable. In addition, my floor, walls, and ceiling have been insulated and a vapor barrier was installed over my entire body.
I have a new torsion spring axel with my original rims (which were also sandblasted, and powder coated). My new moon hub caps are a nice touch and I have a spare tire mounted on my new polished aluminum bumper, which also has ends caps so you can store my new custom-made awning and poles.
They salvaged all my usable aluminum skin and gave me new period windows with bronze screen, along with a period door lite license tag holder and running lights and a roof ventilator.
Whew!!!! That is a lot and I just got started, cannot wait to tell you about my fantastic interior. O’ a few other things, I have twin 20-gallon propane tanks, and a new polish that is killer!
My interior consists of a new electrical system and a WFCO Ultra III Power Center and new electrical, gas lines, and plumbing . They restored my original sink and I now have an electric water pump with a 5-gallon freshwater tank. My new refrigerator is quite nice, and my custom maple and birch cabinetry is cool, along with my retro vintage laminate counter tops. I have restored locking pulls on my cabinet drawers and a convenient pull-out drawer for a convection oven.
My dinette area is nice with lift seats for storage and can be converted to a sleeping area for one.
The large table also converts to a sleeping area with cabinetry above for additional storage and space for future tv. I have electrical outlets, USB ports, a fan, and under cabinet lighting over the retro aluminum backsplash.
All my interior finishes are really cool, my custom fabric on the bench seats, pillows and brushed aluminum mini blinds that go well with the aluminum ceiling.
O they also made a custom maple screen door that is a nice touch as well.
I know I may have missed a few items but the pics can tell the rest of the story, in addition just so you’ll know I am 10’9” long 78” wide and 80” tall with interior head room of 72” .
My total length is 13’9” bumper to hitch with a whopping 10” ground clearance. I admittedly have gained a few pounds, with all that custom work and upgrades, I now have a weight of 2,900.00 lbs. along with a clean title and registration.
I have never been in better shape, actually I’m in pristine condition since my renovations. You see I was a labor of love; they did all this work so I could go to Colorado as a graduation gift for their son, but circumstances changed and I have been protected in a warehouse for the past 6 years. The only place I have been was to the Tin Can Rally in Brooksville Florida a few months ago.
I do hope you like what you see, because my adopted parents really went beyond what was necessary and have given me a new life that I would like to share with you.