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Old 07-14-2009, 03:25 PM   #15
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Ken, this is the stuff of long thoughts around the fire. A few beers (that's all it takes nowadays for me), some BS, and perhaps the answers are revealed, only to look silly in the morning. So many ways to rebel, a vintage truck, a vintage trailer, long hair, a doobie, bellbottoms, a fedora and Florsheim shoes, but what to rebel against? Isn't rebellion a function of that which is rebelled against? Does it matter at Burning Man? Who cares about the truck in the Nevada desert once you get naked (send photos)?

I still think your wife will make the decision.

Good luck and I'd sure like to drive that old truck.

Gene
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Old 07-14-2009, 03:35 PM   #16
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I still think your wife will make the decision.

Good luck and I'd sure like to drive that old truck.

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Old 07-14-2009, 04:24 PM   #17
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Rat Rod ????

I double dog dare you to ask one of these street rod guys about their 'rat rod'













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Old 07-14-2009, 04:40 PM   #18
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Hi de ho, I like old stuff. I'm a modern mechanic, I am quailified and capable of , and indeed curently work on computer controlled fuel injected modern engines and drivetrains. I am a Ford man myself, but most all of the modern vehicles on the road are marvels of engineering. For the most part you just drive modern vehicles, they are for the most part fool proof. They do break, that enables me to pay my rent and buy kool stuff.
Old stuff is kool, might not be practical but kool. With the right mindset your old Dodge would be perfect to criss cross the country with. You seem to have that mindset most people do not. The people that do not have that mindset are not wrong, they just don't want to spend their life fiddling with some that has to be fiddled with.
Our old 1967 Tradewind is not being restored. We use it frequintly and fix it up as the budget and time allow. I am not saying we are right or wrong, that is just what Helen and I do. Three weeks ago I found in Las Vegas, a one owner, 1971 F100. A F100 is a half ton pickup. Very good condition, not perfect, not restored but nice. It is a 360 V8, the old guy had the engine rebuilt about a 1000 miles ago and installed a 4 barrel edalbrock manifold & carb. It has the old granny gear 4 speed trans, 3.53 open diff. It has a very old Monkey Wards under dash A/C that blows ice cold air. I intend to pull the Airstream as soon as I fabricate a hitch, which will be on the step bumper as was done in 1971. I will reinforce the bumper. I anticipate installing 3.89 0r 4.10 rear gears and a Ford traction lock diff at some point. A good chance that I will install front disc brakes off a 1973 or newer F150.
My point ( if I am able to find one) is that with out a dought the old Dodge will work. Good luck in your endevours. Adios, John
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Old 07-14-2009, 05:10 PM   #19
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Thank you ALL.

I've really enjoyed this thread! There IS something compelling about vintage... and if I won the lottery I'd have a "Jay Leno" garage full of vintage stuff. And I'd invite you all to come over and tinker or polish in the air conditioned interior. I'd also go to Burning Man with a support crew... to flatbed my way cool vintage truck and 50's 13 panel Airstream to within 50 miles of the event!

However, even though I am remarkably mechanical "for a girl" I'm sorry, I just don't want or need another hobby that would obsess and possess me. Especially now when I can go to a rally and drool over your cool rigs!

Vintage is like the charm of grandchildren vs. children. When grandchildren cry, get colic, or behave badly... you CAN hand them back to their parents, say how adorable they are... and walk away.


To me the two big drawbacks to vintage are:
  • Not easily replaced - Someone totals my 25 FB SE, I call Colonial Airstream and ask "whatcha got in a 27 FB SE International?" Two weeks later after I've replaced my clothing and reloaded my Kindle I'm all better.
  • Traffic - 40 years ago vs. today. I can put the hammer down and GO if I have to, but I yearn for the quiet country two-lane roads of northeastern Ohio that I grew up on. I can still find those pathways now, after a 2 hour four-lane interstate drive. Oh dear Lord preserve me from ever having to take a vintage unit between Quantico and DC on I-95! I've done it several times with my new unit... usually opting for 4:30 AM on a weekend for running the "gauntlet".
  • Oh, and then there's money.
My friends, first listen to your heart, then obey your wife, and everything will be cool. She'll eventually buy you a vintage truck... along with a tube of glue to put it together with!

wicked Paula
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Old 07-14-2009, 05:15 PM   #20
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Oddly enough, my wife cares so deeply about my happiness that she respects even my most egregious decisions. And because I care so deeply for her, I try to make very few of them. There are worse ways to stumble through the institution of marriage.

As for rebellion, I think of fighting for something rather than against it. We, as a civilization, depend on machines we don't understand. I enjoy muddling through doing my own electrical, plumbing and general household repair work... mostly. I do suffer occasional meltdowns where my Navy vocabulary emerges. On the whole, however, I like the feeling of doing it myself rather than relying on others.

For most drivers, the automobile is a black box. You get in. You turn the key. "D" means drive. "R" means go backwards. A light you don't normally see on the dash means something is wrong and it's time to call the mechanic. I'm the guy with a box in my office with a oil temperature gauge, transmission temperature gauge and differential temperature gauge waiting to be installed. None of my daughters (nor my wife) could find the differential on my truck... and I want to know exactly how hot it is running while towing.

And more, if it breaks I want to be able to fix it. There is an elemental satisfaction in fixing a truck that won't run. And as wonderful as modern trucks are, they are beyond my abiltyto repair... but give me a 50s or 60s engine compartment and I can actually identify the parts. And perhaps entirely by accident, can fix an occasional problem. As Diesel1 notes, you have to like fiddling with something... or better yet, improving it. This is one of the reasons we bought a vintage Airstream rather a new "box."

Sure, I readily admit many things are beyond my abilities. I'm lousy at mudding drywall and a good auto body man will put me to shame every time. I wouldn't think of doing the body work on an old truck, nor would I take out my own appendix... but there are some things even I can do "good enough."

I understand that most people just don't want to be bothered. The vehicle is simply a tool for getting from point "a" to point "b." And the travel trailer is just a tin tent. That's why we're all here... right?
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Old 07-14-2009, 06:06 PM   #21
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Why don;t you think about a late 60's full sice sedan.
Like a lincoln , imperial or a cadillac.
I gues that in the 60's ( our son tels me that at that time the dinosaurs where still alive ) most trailers where towed by the big sedans or estates.

Most trucks of that vitage drive les comfortabel than an modern day farm tractor.
I towed my 1973 overlander with a 1957 imperial.
Now that I have a 1986 32 ft I tow with a 1979 chevy C30.
I like the chevy but it is about 10 % of the comfort of the 1957 imperial
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Old 07-14-2009, 06:58 PM   #22
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Oddly enough, my wife cares so deeply about my happiness that she respects even my most egregious decisions. And because I care so deeply for her, I try to make very few of them. There are worse ways to stumble through the institution of marriage.

As for rebellion, I think of fighting for something rather than against it. We, as a civilization, depend on machines we don't understand. I enjoy muddling through doing my own electrical, plumbing and general household repair work... mostly. I do suffer occasional meltdowns where my Navy vocabulary emerges. On the whole, however, I like the feeling of doing it myself rather than relying on others.

And more, if it breaks I want to be able to fix it. There is an elemental satisfaction in fixing a truck that won't run. And as wonderful as modern trucks are, they are beyond my abiltyto repair... but give me a 50s or 60s engine compartment and I can actually identify the parts. And perhaps entirely by accident, can fix an occasional problem.

Sure, I readily admit many things are beyond my abilities. I'm lousy at mudding drywall and a good auto body man will put me to shame every time.
All that sounds like our marriage and how I approach most things. My wife loves autos and trucks and we buy them more frequently than we have to. She loves classic cars and we have spent many happy hours in classic car museums. They don't have many trucks in most of them, probably because they have been run into the ground or are still on a farm or ranch somewhere doing the chores. She has never said no when I wanted to buy a new vehicle until I told her to stop me before I spent all our money. On the other hand, she wanted the Airstream and I wanted her to be happy. It got me a new pickup, so it all worked out. My physical fixing energy goes in the house, land and trailer maintenance.

I used to like fixing vehicles, but my back injury made it too hard to bend over the fender. I was self taught after age 40 and it was a great feeling of accomplishment make a friend's car run with a Swiss Army knife and a matchbook cover (right thickness for setting points) after they couldn't start it, or listening to it and knowing what to fix. Now I see a sea of metal under the hood and can't even check the transmission fluid anymoreóno dip stick. But they keep going, hardly need any maintenance, and my back doesn't hurt as much.

I'm lousy at taping drywall (just look at some of my basement walls), but found paneling a solution. Hopeless at body work.

If I were 30 years younger, I'd be much more interested in fulltiming with a vintage rig. But I can live vicariously when you do and expect lots of photos, stories and maybe a book. When you get to Colorado, we can drink beer, go camping, and trade lies.

I know whatever you do, it will be well thought through by both of you, and if you screw it up, you'll be the first to admit it, and move on from there.

Gene
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Old 07-14-2009, 07:43 PM   #23
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mostly. I do suffer occasional meltdowns where my Navy vocabulary emerges.

For most drivers, the automobile is a black box.
I presume, from these few lines, that you actually meant to say is that the automobile is an FM Black Box?

I would concur. Although they really don't look much different than their earlier ancestors (four wheels, steering wheel, passenger seats), past that they have little in common. Oh, there's still a crankshaft and pistons and valves... but pretty much every system otherwise bears little resemblance to the original mechanical analogues. Accelerate and brake by wire, port fuel injection, individual coils... a complete lack of mechanical switches; those functions taken on by computer and wire blocks... they truly ARE FM black boxes!

Roger
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:17 PM   #24
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Back in the early '70's, I got a '66 Chevy 1 ton panel truck, the one that had 10 ft. of interior length behind the driver, 10,000 gvw, on 19.5 wheels. It had the 292 six, with an sm420 trans, and 5.13 gears. It would pull anything,,, but a 6>7% grade had you in 2nd. gear, going 15>20 mph.
Sure miss that truck though, with a 454/th400, would make a fine vintage tow vehicle.
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Old 07-15-2009, 12:02 AM   #25
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The modern 1/2 versus the vintage 3/4 ton

Greetings hampstead38!

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The reason I start thinking about this recently is our decision to pick up a '66 Dodge D200 "Camper Special" as a potential project tow vehicle for the Overlander. (If we don't use it, my daugter certainly would love to drive it to the horse barn and back.)

While not a perfect match, it's close. Digging around on a vintage Dodge truck forum, I found a bit of history. If the link to the chart works, you can see the D100 (half-ton) is "rated" to pull up to 3500 pounds. The D200 (three-quarter-ton) is rated to pull up to 5000 pounds. This is considerably less than the Titan's capacity of 7400 (or 9000 with a lower-geared rear differential). So, is it safe to tow the Overlander with a D200? Does the 80 percent rule apply?
I am not certain about the 1966 Dodge D200 Camper Special, but the 1968 D200 Camper Special was rated to handle up to an 11' slide in camper according to what the Dodge dealer told us was the case when my family was searching for a truck to haul our camper in August of 1968 (it was equipped with a high-output 383 cubic inch wedge V8 and 4 BBL Carter Carburetor). While my family ultimately decided upon special ordering a new 1969 Chevrolet C20, I was always a fan of the Dodge. I would think that the question may be answered by the engine the truck came equipped with -- my preference would be the Wedge 361 cubic inch V8s, but the 273 cubic inch V8 was well thought of as well (I don't believe that the Slant 6 was available with the Camper Special). The Camper Special also usually came equipped with the 727 Chrysler Torqueflyte automatic which has served me well in my '65 Dodge Coronet 500 Convertible that serves as my infrequent tow vehicle.

The Camper Specials were designed for highway use to suit campers, and were typically geared for highway travel with either towing or camper hauling anticipated. Unfortunately, Camper Specials often utilized 1-Ton rear springs to gain capacity for slide-in campers which have the potential of providing issues with ride quality for the Airstream. I can't think of a better looking pair than a 1966 Dodge D200 towing a Vintage Airstream.

Good luck with your research!

Kevin
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Old 07-15-2009, 06:33 PM   #26
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The 52 is a great truck, but designed in a much different time... What drove the new trucks to there level was the upper class, or ladies wanting to own them. In the 50's it was formers and workers.

The driving was very different. That was a turning point for transportation, and introduction of "Super Highways" and safety was later born seatbelts ect, because travel speeds picked up, so did accidents and deaths.

The metal was different, much better or much worse. No crinkle points, and then metalergicaly speeking tensil strength for the front end, even steering ratio's. Infact for chevy I also think it was a transition from oil bath and babited bearings to pressure lubrication. ( oil pump)

For factual information regarding capacity, I turn to a pro. In this case I recomend you talk to Tom Langdon at "Stovebolt" He was an engineer at Chevy begining in those days, and was a technical advisor there also. He can offer you mods or info, that is factual based on "his" design for chevy back then. He is retired now but self employed and a fountain of knowledge, and a friend I turn to for old engine knowledge.

I will try to paste his link for you Langdon's Stovebolt

as far as other mfg vintage, he is connected to engineers from mopar and Ford. I love those old cars
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Old 07-15-2009, 11:11 PM   #27
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A Dodge D200 Camper Special is sitting the parking lot and the keys are on my desk. The maiden voyage home was an adventure. I have grown soft driving trucks with power steering, power brakes, air conditioning, etc.

You are correct that the D200 Camper Specials have the one-ton springs. I guess the "cure" is finding a utilty body and loading it full of enough tools to keep the truck runnning. The engine is the old 318 poly. There are very few performance add ons for the old 318, but there are plenty of "drop in" motors which can be built for serious torque. Of course, first on my list is to look at the steering gear box which felt more like a steering suggestion box.

The four-speed manual peformed well, though there was mile of clutch travel. The 727 auto is nice thought, and one that makes the prospect of backing up the Airstream a bit more palatable. The previous owner threw in a bed full of parts including a square end hitch that looks like it weighs 300 pounds.

A pleasant surprise, everything electrical works. Every gauge performed well. The body is relatively straight and rust free for an east coast truck. I had some heat in one of the rear wheel hubs, but that's something to add to the list. What I really need is to lose 6" of height so I can straighten my leg to the accelerator pedal.

I don't know if the D200 will be "the" tow vehicle for the Overlander, but it will be good to teach my youngest daughter how to drive a stick. It's a chance to turn wrenches on a truck I can actually understand and push comes to shove, I won't lose any money on the deal... which is more than I can say for the Airstream.

Now, I need to go look at 383 performance parts.
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Old 07-15-2009, 11:17 PM   #28
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Hamstead,

Check this site: DTA Forums :: Dodge Sweptline Truck Forum

MoparNorm, who runs the site, has a great deal of information about the 318 Poly and he has headers available.

The old Dodges are known for stiff springs, I know that my 1972 W200 is stiffer than any comparable Ford or GM.

Bill
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