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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Old Trucks Are the Future

Ok, so the Dumbplumber is an old truck junkie, Car Crazy to the bone. There I said it. I’ve been told that you can’t start recovery until you admit you have a problem. Well, if loving old trucks is an illness, mine is terminal. I have four pickup trucks from 67 through 72 and a ‘79 1-ton boom truck along with an ‘82 4X4 diesel (with 62 thousand ‘original’ miles, thank you very much) for good measure.

Okay, I keep the ‘72 Blazer and ‘67 step side as “project” trucks (both run) on non-op, but the rest I use in my water pump business, all licensed and insured.

72 Blazer.  The Dumbplumber thinks this is his car but really belongs to the Dust Bunny Queen

Call me crazy, but I can own, license and insure these old work trucks for less money than I can own one ‘new’ ¾ ton 4X4. Add to that, I can buy any part I need out of a catalog. Yes my bling loving friend, I can even buy cabs, motors and frames if the need arises and at a cost far less than a new truck. Nevermind that I always have a truck to drive while another gets repaired.

But let us just take a look at the economical aspect of this position. If I can get 12 to 15 mpg out of one or two of my $3,000 trucks, how many miles do I have to drive a new one getting 18mpg, when it costs $35,000 new, with another $3k to $4k a year to license and insure? And that doesn’t factor in the $10k you lose the moment you drive off the lot and another 8% a year in depreciated value of the vehicle. Keeping in mind that my forty year old trucks really stopped depreciating about 20 years ago and actually hold their value or rise with improvements and repairs over time.

It has become so lopsided that there is a cottage industry in restoring these old trucks into retro vehicles promoting all kinds of businesses using vintage lettering and worn patina finishes to attract attention. But under the skin these rolling billboards have power windows, A/C, power steering and fuel injected engines pumping out serious horsepower. Not to mention the head snapping stares from ‘blingmobile’ drivers in the other lane.

Nothing really says cool like a guy in a $60,000 dollar quad-cab diesel, all jacked up, with monster tires, watching your tail lights disappear into the horizon, just after the light changes. Now that’s a feeling no doctor can prescribe at any price. Dumbplumber

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