In 1986, I was working for the U.S.
Forest Service, and my duties were fire prevention and
fire patrol. While we were mopping up after a brush
fire that covered about 45 acres on private land near
my station, I noticed something under a large oak tree.
It turned out to be an old truck with several trees
growing up around the frame. The ornament on the radiator
indicated that it was some kind of International.
I contacted the owner and offered him $250. The next
day, I pulled the truck out from under the oak tree,
loaded it on a trailer and hauled it home. A wash job
revealed that restoring the truck was going to be a
long task. During the weeks no, months
I spent taking it apart, I could see a growing resemblance
to some type of fire-fighting vehicle. That's when I
decided to restore this as a fire truck. I already worked
in the fire department, which gave me access to pertinent
parts, and I started saving anything fire related from
yard sales and antique stores.
I stripped the truck and had it sandblasted from the
frame up. Then I started to rebuild the C-cab, using
the old deteriorated one as a pattern. Vintage Truck
magazine gave me lots of information on how old trucks
looked in 1928.
While Lee Rogers was working on the engine, we found
a brass tag on the side of the block stating that it
had been rebuilt in East Los Angeles in 1935. The only
thing wrong was a broken pin that held the stick shift
to the transmission. A new pin fixed that. With Rob
Pomroy's help, we were able to get this old truck to
start. It had not been used for more than 30 years,
yet it started and ran like a new rig.
Years went by, and I just kept working on the International,
doing what I thought best. In 1994, I retired from the
Forest Services and moved to Gardnerville, Nevada. The
old truck went with me and I had more time to work on
it. I joined the Valley Cruiser car club and that gave
me more interest to complete the project.
In early 2004, the 18-year-long truck project was nearly
complete. My friend, Dean Hacker, did most of the welding
for the new bed. Another friend in the club, Billy Tucker,
helped me with the painting. That summer, I took my
1928 International Six Speed Special fire truck to its
first automotive show and picked up first place and
a trophy for "People's Choice Award." I am
looking forward to entering it in other truck shows
as they come up.
Visit the Antique Automobile Club of America web
site at http://www.aaca.org/
and join one of the best and largest antique cars clubs
in the world.
A SAMPLE OF INTERNATIONAL HARVESTER LITERATURE