We hit the jackpot in Vulcan Alberta, a literal treasure trove of old trucks, and during our walk around town we found numerous old and interesting examples. Everything from a Mack B series and a Cruise Liner; five, count them, five old GMC and Chevrolet farm trucks, a Willy’s Jeep drove by and we saw an old Dodge from World War Two that was marked for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
If you have been following this blog you’ll see that we often just pick a small town and wander around it. Rarely with any goals in mind, we explore to see what interesting things we can find. This March trip had us paying the town of Vulcan a visit and we were pleasantly surprised to find all the old trucks that we did. We had no idea the trip would be such productive one in that respect.
The first one we see, sitting in a maintenance yard, is a 1939-1947 Dodge. It’s missing its butterfly hood and the engine is sitting in the box. What makes this one interesting is that it’s marked for the Royal Canadian Air Force. There are some numbers in the side and I assume these identify the squadron or location. Only a guess however as nothing turns up when I do a search using them. I’ll keep working on it however and as always I would be glad to hear from anyone who may know more.
There is a former world war two aircraft training base nearby and it’s possible the truck is from there. Or it could be from any of the others that dotted this part of the province. There were many.
In the northwest corner of town we find an
Flyer D800x series AM General former transit bus (okay not a truck but it’s still very interesting). The colours suggest it once operated for Seattle Washington’s Transit System. This model bus was produced in the US in cooperation with Flyer Industries in Winnipeg Manitoba, who made them for here, in the 1970s. Long since retried from service, one can still find the occasional example out there – like this one – one would fully expect most remained in the US however.
Sharing the same lot is a 1951 or 1952 Ford half ton. A fairly common old truck, we see lots if these in back lots and farmer’s fields.
Next we discover a Mack B series heavy truck. These rugged models were all business and were produced from 1953 to 1966. This one was sitting right up against a fence making photography difficult. Right next to it was an elderly school bus that was impossible to photograph due to its location. It was jammed into a corner.
Finding ourselves near the train tracks we come across a “plain old” GMC grain truck. This model and its Chevrolet counterpart is the most common old truck we see and it seems that nearly every farmer had one. Today in our travels we’d find five of them! This example is parked at a seed cleaning plant and from the looks of it is drivable.
In the town yard, amongst all the new trucks, we spot an older Mack R series. This was the model that superseded the B series we spoke of earlier and it was produced for almost forty years, up until 2005! It was that good a design I guess. It has very unique lines and it would be impossible to confuse it with any other truck.
Taking in lunch at a city park we were lucky enough to spot an old Willy’s Jeep that drove by. I am not certain the exact model, but it looks very much like the old Korean War era military Jeep, making this one I believe either a CJ2 or CJ3 model.
Across the street from the park was an interesting acreage tractor, a rather odd looking Bolen’s Ridemaster. Painted in camouflage it blends in well with the leaf filled yard. These models were produced over an approximate ten year span ending in the late 1950s. These were essentially an early yard tractor, albeit a very crude looking one. Hobby farmers and those with modest acreages could find lots of uses for this simple little machine and there were a myriad of attachments that could be purchased for it.
Leaving the park behind we almost instantly find more treasures and sitting in a field are two more late 1940s/early 1950s Chevrolet trucks. Sharing this space is an even older Dodge pickup and a couple other old cars cars. Some interesting stuff here.
In a small industrial yard we see a real nice find, a Mack Cruise Liner. This model was produced from the mid 1970s into the early 1980s, back when cab over style highway trucks were more popular (it’s rare to see one today). Right behind it sits a nice mid 1950s International pickup. I have a real soft spot for these less common trucks and these two examples were a nice surprise.
One more yard over and we find a 1960s/early 1970s Dodge D300 with a camper on it. It looks to be in pretty decent shape, a nice truck. Inside the same yard, but too far back to photograph were some other interesting bits, old Jeeps and Blazers and the like. Behind an awful pink Chevette, was a 1960s International pickup.
Other interesting bits found include a burly GMC 6500 on propane working at a demolition site and a Ford LN series grain truck parked at an industry. Next to that was another (you guessed it) GMC farm truck. This one was bright yellow – there is no missing it!
Last but not least, we find one more Chevrolet grain truck, the fifth of this model (including GMC equivalents) we’d see this day. What a popular truck! This one had a sign announcing Vulcan’s 100th birthday which will take place in the summer of 2013. This truck also looks to be drivable.
We had a great time uncovering all these trucks and this only goes to show that small prairies towns are often a treasure trove of interesting discoveries.
Vulcan is the fictional home planet of Spock from the TV series Star Trek and the town has capitalized on this coincidence. There are many “Trekkie” themed attractions here and in summer it’s geek-fest with costumed visitors often taking over the town. We came for the trucks though, and the grain elevators, and other stuff.
If you wish more information on these trucks, by all means contact us!
Date: February, 2013.
Location: Calgary, AB.