The Truth About Cars » ford truck http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Fri, 18 Jul 2014 12:00:37 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.1 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » ford truck http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com Monday Mileage Champion: 2001 Ford F250 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/09/monday-mileage-champion-2001-ford-f250/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/09/monday-mileage-champion-2001-ford-f250/#comments Mon, 17 Sep 2012 13:00:02 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=460517

 

755,507 miles.

This Ford F250 has truly lived up to all the rigors of what a long lasting truck represents. Mileage beyond the moon. Scuffs aplenty. Vinyl seats.  Not to mention an engine and powertrain that truly stood the test of time.

Speaking of which, can you guess what engine it has?

We’ll give you a hint. It’s in plain sight. Ford offered some unconventional engines in their heavy-duty trucks back in the day. This particular engine  has seen duty in more than one Ford with a truck chassis. But it’s not a common one. Not in the slightest, and I doubt that Ford will ever bring it back given the CAFE regulations of the day.

You may need to squint a bit to find this one.  But it’s there in plain sight.

 

 

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When You Need a Sensible Tow Vehicle: Cab-Over Ford With Nowhere-Near-Finished Toronado FWD Drivetrain Swap http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/12/when-you-need-a-sensible-tow-vehicle-cab-over-ford-with-nowhere-near-finished-toronado-fwd-drivetrain-swap/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/12/when-you-need-a-sensible-tow-vehicle-cab-over-ford-with-nowhere-near-finished-toronado-fwd-drivetrain-swap/#comments Wed, 21 Dec 2011 16:00:35 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=423030 It’s always good to have friends with way crazier more ambitious vehicular projects than one’s own not-making-much-forward-progress Hell Projects. Rich, captain of the Rocket Surgery Racing mid-VW-engined Renault 4CV, has a snake pit cornucopia of such projects at his place, not far from Chez Murilee in Denver. Rich, last seen by TTAC readers helping me Nader-ize the brakes on my van, has big racing plans for 2012… and for that he needs a flatbed truck that can haul a race car and tow a camping trailer. Oh, and it also has to be a beautiful vintage machine, yet capable of prodigious load capacity. The original plan was to use the ’47 Ford pickup he bought at the amazing Seven Sons Auto Wrecking auction last winter, but then this fine vehicle danced into his field of vision.
I don’t know the first thing about non-light-duty Ford trucks, but I have a vague recollection that this is a ’46. Early postwar, at any rate. For power, it has a 1969 Oldsmobile Toronado 455 front-drive setup. The engine and suspension are installed, sort of, but the steering system hasn’t been worked out yet.
This setup worked just fine on the front-wheel-drive GMC motorhomes of the 1970s, and it should work fine here.
Another part of the project that needs some work is the rear suspension. Right now, there isn’t one. I keep suggesting a pair of early Eldorado rear axles, for that cool six-wheeler look. That’s because I don’t have to do the work.
The steering setup is going to be a total nightmare, because there’s not much room for anything up front with the Olds running gear. Rich will have to fabricate something with a lot of strange bends and joints, or else ditch the super-cool front-drive setup and convert the truck back to its original rear-wheel-drive setup. You do what you have to do.
Whatever happens, the truck will look great in the paddock with this vintage “canned ham” trailer. Rich drove the length of the Great Plains to pick it up this summer.
Then, of course, there’s the engineless Autobianchi Bianchina Hell Project and more 40s Ford truck parts in the back yard.
Not to mention the sawed-up 4CV parts donor.
And the garage full of weird VW parts, including the long-idled GTI with every possible performance upgrade and a floor full of junkyard turbocharging gear for the 4CV.
On top of that, Rich has his 289-powered ’47 Ford coupe (which we used as a Judgemobile at the ’10 B.F.E. GP 24 Hours of LeMons) and a newly-acquired ’49 Ford sedan for his wife, who is a very, very understanding spouse to allow her back yard to fill up with all those rusty old car parts. Now I feel like a total loser for not getting much work done on my Civic engine swap or A100 Hell Project this year.

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Down On The Mile High Street: 1969 Ford F-100 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/down-on-the-mile-high-street-1969-ford-f-100/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/03/down-on-the-mile-high-street-1969-ford-f-100/#comments Tue, 22 Mar 2011 21:00:44 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=388297
Now that my ’66 Dodge A100 is back on the street, I find it pleasing that a Ford pickup of similar vintage lives in my Denver neighborhood.

This 42-year-old truck clearly gets used for real-world truck activities, proving once again that the vintage of a Detroit truck doesn’t matter as much as its ability to start, drive, and haul stuff every day.

A new ’69 F-100 Styleside with the long wheelbase listed at $2,430 for the base model with the 150-horsepower 240-cubic-inch six-cylinder engine and 3-speed manual transmission. That’s about $14,650 in 2011 bucks, a pretty good deal when you consider that the cheapest 2011 F-150 MSRP’s at north of 23 grand. Of course, today’s full-sized Ford pickup has more power and is way more comfortable, yet gets better fuel economy, but still: you can haul that big load of pork salivary glands and lymph nodes to your sausage factory just as well in either one!

With my van, this truck, and this ’51 Chevy pickup just around the corner, my neighborhood has vintage representatives from each of the Detroit Big Three. We’ve also got this mid-60s Land Rover Station Wagon and this Toyota FJ40 work truck rounding things out; all that’s missing are the elderly Jeep, Studebaker, and International Harvester trucks.

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The Ultimate Curbside Classic: 1956 Ford F-350 Still Hard At Work Six Days A Week http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/04/the-ultimate-curbside-classic-1955-ford-f-350-still-hard-at-work-six-days-a-week/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/04/the-ultimate-curbside-classic-1955-ford-f-350-still-hard-at-work-six-days-a-week/#comments Sun, 18 Apr 2010 16:35:46 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=353017

Welcome to Havana, Oregon. Back in the eighties, living in tony Los Gatos, I used to gaze longingly at photos of old American cars and trucks still hard at work in Cuba. But within days of moving to Eugene in 1993, I came across this very truck, hauling its daily cargo of recycled cardboard. And it planted a seed in me, to document the old vehicles still earning their keep, which finally came to fruition with Curbside Classics. Although we’ve strayed from the strict interpretation of that mission a few times along the way, no other vehicle more perfectly embodies the original ethos than this 1956 F-350.

I’ve seen this rolling relic coming and going all these years, and tried to catch it since starting CC, even searching futilely in the Yellow Pages for “B&L Recycling”.  But on our daily walk yesterday, there it was, with its owner loading up a week’s worth of cartons from Cafe Zenon. After a hard first twenty-five years as a farm truck, since 1979, “Gus” has been earning a living for owner Mike McCool, hauling cardboard to be recycled at the local pulp mill five and six days a week, year in and year out.

Let’s get the preliminaries out of the way first: either you “get” Gus and his owner, or you don’t. If you do, you can skip this paragraph. If not, I’m not sure I can change your perspective, but at least give Mike the credit that every aspect of his truck and his life’s work is deliberate. That goes for his precarious-looking load in the back: he’s been at it so long, he knows exactly what it’s doing; hasn’t lost one yet in thirty years. Mike’s hardly some marginal or pathetic character to either pity or wish the hell he’d get his battered eyesore off the road. He’s a successful independent small businessman who’s found a niche that allows him to make a reasonable living while living his passion for recycling. And keeping old things running forever.

It’s a way of life that I can relate to, even if I chose not to live it quite to Mike’s level by a long shot. Although my similarly battered ’66 F-100 isn’t getting worked as much anymore as it was during my old-house moving and rebuilding days. Let’s just say Mike and I share at least an old Ford truck in common, and we hit it off. He was happy to show me the various tricks employed to keep a fifty-five year old truck running happily, like the original oil-bath air cleaner that never needs replacing. He did just mount an alternator to the old 223 cubic inch six, and recently splurged for some new custom-made 16″ front wheels to replace the 17″ split rims that are such a pain. After he’s amortized that rare and pricey investment, he’ll buy some for the rears too. Finally having radials on the front were like suddenly getting power steering. I know the feeling.

Lest I forget, Mike did rebuild the engine after he first bought it in 1979. Burning a quart of oil every hundred miles was a strong incentive. He used high quality parts, and it’s still running strong. The 223 six started life in 1952 as the 215, Ford’s first modern OHV engine. It developed a rep as a rugged work horse; but then that pretty much applied to all of Detroit’s sixes back then. It’s definitely the way to go if maximum reliability and minimum upkeep are high on the priority list and V8 power isn’t. Gus sticks to the surface streets, and the six purrs contentedly.

These old American trucks used a healthy grade of steel throughout. They come from a time when American trucks were still exported throughout the world, as paragons of durability, power and utility. And it really isn’t hard to keep them on the road pretty much forever. Except for some rust on the lip over the windshield, Gus is good to go for…as long as Mike wants him to.

Although it may seem that Mike lives in a world a bit different from ours, he’s actually as or more intimately connected to world affairs and the global economy than most of us. The global price of cardboard fluctuates dramatically, based obviously on the demand for cartons to ship the world’s products, especially from China. Having weathered a crash in the price down to $5/ton in the worst months of the recent recession (living debt free and cheaply made it possible), its recently jumped dramatically to $70. Not exactly back to the all-time highs of $110 a few years back, but that’s probably a good thing. According to Mike’s cardboard price index, the recession is quite truly over. But he’s not running out to buy a new truck. Enough chatting; Mike and Gus have work to do.

More new Curbside Classics here

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