Dude, Where's (Parts For) My Truck?
I just bought a '71 Fargo Dude that I wish to restore. It is in really good shape, but apparently it's a rare truck and hard to find parts for. After flipping through your magazine, I noticed that the majority of ads are for Chevrolet and Ford trucks. If you can offer me any advice or point me in the right direction, it would be greatly appreciated!
Thank you for your time,
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Unfortunately, Andrew, I don't have much, if any, good information for you. While indeed your Sweptline truck-the Canadian version of Dodge's D100 Dude-is as rare as can be, so too are resources for restoration. Some time spent on the Internet revealed there are online sources, such as www.dodgeforum.com. Also, I came upon a restoration and information site that claimed the following: "In Canada, Chrysler trucks of this era ('70-71) were sold by one of two dealerships. Chrysler-Plymouth dealers sold Fargo trucks. Trucks sold as Dodge in Canada were sold at the Dodge-DeSoto dealers. It is rumored that there was a Fargo counterpart to the Dude, which may have worn the name the Fargo Top-Hat Special, although none are known currently to exist."
Andrew, if the above statement is true, and your truck is indeed a Fargo and not a Dodge, then you may have a much rarer truck than you think. Either way, when it comes to parts availability and restoration services, about the only advice I can offer is to start reaching out on the Internet as I have. Good luck!
I read your buildup of the 235 since I have a '57 235 powering my '37 Chevy pickup. When you got to the water pump, you left out a good option. When I put mine together, I used a Jim Carter shortened pump that has the 216/early 235-style pulley. I heard it spun the water too fast, but I never had problems.
I was thinking about changing to the one from Patrick's with the more correct later-size pulley. Well, my pump went bad, and I went into the radiator and found the short pump I had could not be replaced with the radiator in the truck. The radiator could not be removed with the pump still on the motor, so removing the radiator meant taking the grille shell off, so on-the-road repairs would be impossible. I could not use a stock fan, as it would hit the radiator and balancer even with the short pump, so I could only put an electric fan in front of the radiator.
I found an adapter to put the pre-'55-style water pump in the correct location on the '55-62 motors, and now I could use a stock fan and get rid of the electric. It's basically a plate that covers the hole in the block for the original water pump and bolts to the back of the pre-'55 water pump, replacing the plate that is on it. I like it so far, as it has worked fine with no problems, and I can now replace the water pump on the road. Two holes need to be drilled in the block to use the adapter, so it can't be done easily with the radiator still in or the grille shell still on with the earlier vehicles. Patrick's water pump will work fine on mid-'40s to '54 cars and trucks, but the early '40s on back have less room, plus the radiator sits a little higher than on the later, and the water pump adapter looks to be a better solution.
Via the Internet
Jeff, thanks for the information; I'm sure a number of readers will appreciate the advice. The reason I didn't get that deep into the water pump alternatives is for the precise reason you mentioned-there really aren't problems to face when dealing with late-'40s and '50s applications, and since we rarely delve into the early-early stuff, the time wasn't taken to research the info you supplied us with, so it's much appreciated.
411 On the Hood?
Great magazine! Editing ain't bad either! Quick question-do you know of a U.S. company that makes a tilt front end kit for my '65 C-10? I'm positive I saw an advertisement in a magazine (possibly yours) within the past 30 days showing a '65 with a forward-tilted front clip, but I can't find it now!
Thank you in advance,
Via the Internet
Well, Larry, you almost named the company yourself in your e-mail! The only company I'm aware of that manufactures one-piece front ends for Chevy trucks is U.S. Body Source. To the best of my knowledge, they haven't advertised in CLASSIC TRUCKS, but you can reach them at 352-468-2203 or visit them online at www.usbody.com. Hope that helps, and thanks for (most of) the kind words!
Off Endangered Species List
I just read your latest editorial about magazines going extinct. It will never happen. They are much easier to flip through, turn the page back, and jump to another article, etc., than the Internet is. Even blindingly fast Internet connections aren't as fast as the fingers and mind. I work on Mazdas for a living. All of our new service manuals are online. I can't use them-they are frustrating! Trying to find stuff on them is like finding a Dodge truck tech article in a truck magazine! Thank god we still get printed versions or I'd go nuts. You have no worries about your job; me, on the other hand, if they stop sending paper versions, I'm gonna quit, come sleep in your office, and beg for a job until you let me build my '67 D100 on the company's dime! LOL, I just realized the sweet irony of me e-mailing you. Perhaps I should have written a letter??
Via the Internet