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  #1  
Old 07-01-2013, 08:42 PM
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Dirtbag Dirtbag is offline
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1958 Ford F600 Firetruck vs. flatbed

Iím at a cross roads...I have an all original 1958 Ford F600 Fire truck, with only 10,600 original miles. Runs and drives great yet, after all these years. I was thinking of removing the rear, American fire apparatus, from the truck and shorting the wheel base and building a nice 8í flat bed for it. Basically turning it into a standard flat bed truck. Nothing like going to the feed store on a nice summer day getting supplies/feed in and old American classic farm truck. But my problem is what to do with the left overs....The truck is fully operable as a fire truck. Everything works...lights, (motor driven and electrical) sirens, front mounted water pumper, PA, and radio. It also is equipped with all the tools, wrenches, jack, ladder, spray nozzles, hundreds of feet of different length hoses and non collapsible suction hoses and the truck mounted booster hose reel. So everything that is required to operate as a fire truck is there. It was just used a couple weeks ago to pump 25,000 gallons of water, and it happily did it with out fuss. It truly is a 55 year old survivor, that has been garage kept since day one new, but it just sits around in the barn not being used. She would pound the pavement, way more often as a work truck/farm truck with the conversion. If I do go the flat bed wrought, what do I do with the rear half, as itís too nice, just to cut up and bring it to the scrapper. Any ideas???

sorry, let me figure out this picture thing, and I'll post some up....
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  #2  
Old 07-01-2013, 09:55 PM
85e150six4mtod 85e150six4mtod is offline
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Welcome to FTE.

OK, Dirtbag*, here's what I think you might could do:

Advertise your truck in fire-prone areas. A couple years ago, a fellow with an old truck (not quite as old) like yours was able to save a house or two, as the regular fire fighters were overwhelmed.

It would be a long shot, but since your truck is in nearly perfect condition and 100% capable, you might be able to sell it as a fire engine.

Otherwise, you are probably looking at sending that stuff to the scrappy. But, I would advertise it all as well before doing that.

Not an easy way to go, but....

Also, by 8' bed, I hope you mean 8' wide, and at least 12' or 14' long, preferably with a hoist. (like dear old dad's '58)

Is yours a 292 4v with a 4 & 2?


*I would never call someone "Dirtbag", unless that was their name...... thank you sir.
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:04 AM
80broncoman 80broncoman is offline
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I also think the fire equipment will not bring much money if its not mounted on a vehicle.
And if the bed is only 12 or 14 feet I'd leave it as is. there will be times i'd think when you would be glad you left it longer.
If its 16 or over I cut it back to 12 if mine.
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Old 07-02-2013, 07:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 85e150six4mtod View Post

Welcome to FTE.


Is yours a 292 4v with a 4 & 2?


*I would never call someone "Dirtbag", unless that was their name...... thank you sir.
Thanks for the welcome.

The truck has the Y-block 292 with a Holly 4-bbl, 4-speed and a single gear rear axle.
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Old 07-02-2013, 09:13 PM
85e150six4mtod 85e150six4mtod is offline
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Even with a 14' bed and hoist, the ride in our '58 was brutal over uneven rail crossings or any pothole, expansion strip, whatever, on the road.

With a single speed axle, depending on ratio, you are probably topping out around 45-55 mph. Our '58 with a two speed would run up against a wall at 60, with the 4bbls open to keep it there it seemed.

Nice old truck, hope you can put it to work one way or another.

Good luck with it.
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  #6  
Old 07-02-2013, 09:24 PM
John R. Thomas John R. Thomas is offline
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Reading your paragraph has an easy answer. I am a fire buff. For 11 years I owned a
city fire truck. It was a 55 Peter Pirsch open cab pumper. It is powered by a 779 cid
Waukesha wet sleeve 6 driving a 1,000 gpm Hale pump. Ross cam and lever steering.
Spicer 5 speed tranny. It got 4 mpg at $1.50/gal. If I owned your Ford, I'd be proud.
Like my Pirsch, it would be equipped as it was in service. Ours was front line for 20 years
and best reserve for 15 more here in Waukesha Wisc.
Post some pictures.
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Old 07-03-2013, 04:29 PM
ireding ireding is offline
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Go with a flat bed and a hoist. Firetrucks are cool but a flatbed and hoist is very handy to have around. Even if you only need to use ita couple times a year you will wonder how you used to get by with out one.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:33 PM
John R. Thomas John R. Thomas is offline
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Question; What is the condition of your pumper? Was it kept indoors or is it weathered
from the elements? Any rust? Is it equipped with all the bells and whistles like our
Pirsch was? Our Pirsch had all the nozzles, adaptors, extinguishers, hay hooks, hack saw,
pipe wrench, bolt cutters, etc. It even had the original deluge set that dated back to
the 1920s and a full load of 2 1/2" & 1 1/2" hose. It was ready for a fire call of any size.
Where on a flat bed can you carry all that equipment with your load of straw?
I can forward pictures to your email address.
Regards,
John Thomas
Waukesha Wi
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Old 07-03-2013, 08:35 PM
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Ok, I'm not a computer tech what so ever. Just a grease monkey that lives on a farm that happens to have the internets.... what is the trick, I can't directly load pictures to this post/site?
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Old 07-03-2013, 09:01 PM
John R. Thomas John R. Thomas is offline
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I have no clue either. Send them to jrtljt031648@att.net
I'll find pictures of our Peter Pirsch and send them to you.
What major city are you near? There may be a fire buff club of guys that
collect and restore vintage fire apparatus. Some are fire fighters.
I am a member of the Milwaukee Fire Historical Society. We have a vintage MFD
fire house and vehicles. All are owned by the society. The fire house is maintained
by the city of Milwaukee. The board are on MFD, retired and volunteers.
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Old 07-04-2013, 12:26 AM
80broncoman 80broncoman is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dirtbag View Post
Ok, I'm not a computer tech what so ever. Just a grease monkey that lives on a farm that happens to have the internets.... what is the trick, I can't directly load pictures to this post/site?
It could be that you only have 4 postings on FTE forums. Some forums have a setting where you can't post pics till you get a certain number of posts.
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Old 07-04-2013, 09:00 AM
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Your 58 fire truck is a true survivor, it would be ashamed to cut it up now. Especially since its so complete (pump,hoses,tools,etc.)
Drive it to the feed store and load a couple bales on the rear bumper bumper where the firemen used to ride (pre OSHA) .... very cool truck!
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Old 07-04-2013, 04:43 PM
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I agree with John Thomas in that if you have a unique truck like a Peter Pirch, Ward or American LaFrance or exceptional common truck then preserving it is a real good way to go.

On the other hand I found a very common 1983 Ford F8000 with 20,000 miles / 770 hours with a Cat 3208, Eaton 5/2 speed with 109" cab to axle with rear frame surface rust and a full Middlesex midship pumper body. I made the decision to go with a 14' flat bed and remove the original body. I'm selling off the equipment, made a workbench out of the body sides and recycled the rest. I would have posted a pic but can't so they are here:

F8000

I have a before pic and the after pics. I did have to fill in the drive shaft where the pump sat ($450.) and change the axle gearing to 4:33/1 ($2650.) because it was a 47 mph truck. The chassis was completely sanded, treated, and painted and now looks new.

I now have a real nice like new truck without lots of electronics or def fluid to contend with. Yes, it's a P.O.S. Cat 3208 but w/ 770 hours it should outlive me. I do have it for sale but don't care if it does or doesn't.
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Old 07-06-2013, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John R. Thomas View Post
Question; What is the condition of your pumper? Was it kept indoors or is it weathered
from the elements? Any rust?
Regards,
John Thomas
Waukesha Wi
As for condition... The truck came from Alabama, so there is zero rust issues. It spent it's entire life down south with the Woodsville FD, until it got retired six years ago form active service duty. The day that it was bought, it was on a fire call the night before. It has been garage kept since new, 55 years ago.
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Old 07-06-2013, 12:37 PM
John R. Thomas John R. Thomas is offline
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Our Mac is out of memory. Therefore, no pictures of our Pirsch.
Your 58 would be better suited as a car hauler w/winch. A chrome grill and bumper
would help. You might find the parts to make it into a Custom Cab.
I'll forward pictures in a week or two.
Regards,
John
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Old 07-06-2013, 12:37 PM
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