Mini-Feature: A 1957 International Welding Truck That’s The Same As It Was When It Left The Job Site

Mini-Feature: A 1957 International Welding Truck That’s The Same As It Was When It Left The Job Site

(Words and photos by Greg Rourke) – We sometimes see a guy at car shows with a 1957 International Harvester pickup. He tells us his grandfather bought the truck brand new, and converted it for his job as a pipeline welder. The welder/generator is belt driven off the driveshaft, there is a gearbox  that allows either PTO or power to the differential. IH offered an engine governor that would let the engine idle until a demand was placed on it, but the owner found it reacted too slow for welding. He would strike an arc and the electrode would stick, as the welder wasn’t up to speed. He devised his own setup, which can be seen in the engine photo. Grandpa fabbed up the front grill guard, the rear bumper/work bench, as well as work benches over both rear fenders. Vintage regulators on the oxy/acetylene tanks, bench grinder and hand tools are all from 1957. The owner had some small photos of Grandpa and the truck working, one where he was shoulder deep in a trench, the pipe almost in his chest as he was welding. Loose spoils piled high next to the trench, and of course no shoring of any kind. Back then they though OSHA was a city in Wisconsin.

(Editor’s note: This truck is totally awesome and is a literal time capsule of what constituted a functional work truck back in the late 1950s-whenever it was done gluing pipe together. We’d bet that old Lincoln welder still works and obviously the truck itself is mobile as it is regularly seen by Bob and Greg at shows. The huge front and rear bumpers with their various additions for different welding operations are awesome, the old bottles ans regulators are great, the faded door paint is just about perfect, and it would be a damned shame to see any of it changed. Just like some cars are better left un-restored, so is this great old work truck.)



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7 thoughts on “Mini-Feature: A 1957 International Welding Truck That’s The Same As It Was When It Left The Job Site

  1. Robert M.

    This one is off scale on the cool-o-meter.

    I will trade you 10 gleaming, classic muscle cars for it!

  2. BigJim

    This truck kicks ass! Stuff like this and Buford T. are why BangShift is my favorite car junkie website!

  3. crazy canuck

    This is so cool we still have 2 of those old torpedo welders in service at work , and they still kick ass over any of the new buzz boxes. I’ll drag cable to use those machines. Neato ac setup off the motor

  4. mike vinciguerra

    its awesome. i like the extended bumper and how the fender is a right height workbench. plus t maintains a hidden tow hook. its so utility it hurts. to all the tough guys with big wheels and stupid noisy tires that haul nothing but air in the bed, you have met your match. grandpas old harvester is the pinnacle of blue collar badass.

  5. Joe

    That Corn Binder is awesome ! Homemade and handy, great setup, never change a thing on it. A real piece of rolling history.

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