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Deluxe 1949 Dodge B-1-B Half Ton 5-Window Pickup - older restoration

  • Price: Ask a price!
  • Make: Dodge
  • Model: Other Pickups
  • Trim: Deluxe
  • Year: 1949
  • Mileage: 155,000
  • VIN: 82108531
  • Color: Dark Blue
  • Engine size: Dodge ‘L Head’ six cylinder 95 HP 218 CID
  • Interior color: Brown
  • Vehicle Title: Clear
  • Location: Houston, Texas, United States


This is a Deluxe 1949 Dodge half-ton 5-window pickup truck.The Deluxe versions had all stainless trim on their front ends (as opposed to painted trim) - see pics - and camewith the 5-window cab.This is one of the first of the then-new generation of ‘Pilot House’ trucks that Dodge came out with starting in 1948.Their claim to fame was enhanced cab space for the driver and passenger(s) over the earlier pre-war pickups.The truck runs well and has only been used in local service.She has made no long distance road trips.With the 5 window cab, which has the side quarter windows, visibility is awesome, and the truck is a real pleasure to drive.

The engine is the original standard Dodge ‘L Head’ (flat head) six cylinder 95 HP 218 CID engine, an awesomely durable workhorse of a motor.This engine is low compression, low horsepower, and will run on gasoline of almost no octane rating.Parts are still readily available for it.The transmission is a 3 speed standard transmission, floor shift style, and seems to run well.Top speed of the truck is of order 65 mph on a modern freeway, but in 1949 the roads were so bad that top speed back then was probably in the 35-45 mph range, limited by the road itself and not by the truck and her engine and gears.

This is an older private restoration, started in June of 2004 and completed in December of 2005 (see restoration images at end of the pics).The truck has not been babied and was never intended to be ‘show class’, rather it has been driven and used and well loved.There are numerous scratches, chips, nicks and dings in the paint, worst area for that is the bed (see image), which has hauled a lot of stuff.This vehicle is not 'show quality' by any stretch of the imagination, it is just one very pretty old truck.

The engine was partially rebuilt and run-in on a test stand for the necessary hours at low RPM to seat the new rings properly.The suspension was completely rebuilt with new components as part of the restoration.The wooden bed was fabricated using 2x8’s, appropriately shaved and notched down to the original 1” wood thickness at braces, but the full 1 ¾” thickness elsewhere.The running boards were hand fabricated by me out of ¼” thick ‘diamond plate’ steel and now function as side impact beams for the truck.

The restored electrical system was a complete new build, starting with spools of various colors and sizes of automotive wire.There is an Autocad wiring diagram for the truck (see last image) that gives the gauge and color of every wire used to build the new wiring harness.The truck has been converted to 12 volts and now uses a modern ‘two wire’ GM alternator.Only the starter and the windshield wiper motor remain 6 volts, and the starter works great on 12 volts, while the wiper motor required a dropping resistor to protect the motor from overheating and burning up.To be able to use the original dash switches, a rack of 30 amp relays are located on the firewall such that only the small relay current is required to be passed through the dash switches, and the relays themselves pass the high amps needed to run all the modern halogen headlights, halogen driving lights, and the large number of running, stop and turn signal lights now on the vehicle.

The original mechanical dash instruments and sending units were completely rusted away and rotten, and so have been replaced with modern VDO electronic instruments mounted in the original instrument clusters. Only the speedometer is still original, and both it and the odometer work.Dash instruments now include oil pressure, water temperature, gas tank level and an ammeter (voltmeter?).Idiot lights are included for ‘no oil pressure’ and ‘zero alternator output’.Backup lights (small driving lights) and large halogen running lights were added on separate dash switches as well, so can be turned on or off.Driving lights can only come on with high beams, a courtesy to other drivers that I wish more car companies would include in their cars.A buzzer was also added to the backup lights to warn when they are turned on.

The truck has been upgraded to meet modern vehicle safety standards with respect to turn, stop and running lights.The original vehicle had but a single tail light, a stop light I believe, and it now has a pair of bed side mounted running/stop/turn signal lights as well as the required license light.The original front running lights have been retained and a pair of 50’s vintage Signal Stat add-on turn signal lights restored and installed, top of fender mount style, with both forward (yellow) and rear facing (red) lenses.Amazing actually, as these 50’s vintage turn signal lights predate all the modern mirror mounted rear facing lights by 60+ years.Obviously an add-on non-cancelling turn signal switch has been added to the steering column, and to aid in remembering to manually cancel the signals, an intermittent buzzer added to the circuit as an audible warning that the turn signals are still on.

The truck has modern gravity harness seat belts for two in the cab, with a lap belt for a third (middle) occupant if needed.A right hand door hinge mounted mirror has been fabricated and added, based on the design of the left hand mirror.An inside rear-view mirror has also been added.Tie downs both inside and outside of the bed have been added to aid in securing cargo, and a ‘bumper bar’ someone fabricated to protect the rear of the cab and back window from shifting cargo has been cleaned up and retained.The front bumper has had a heavy pipe brush guard fabricated and welded to the bumper.The rear bumper is actually a piece of oil field drill pipe, with the necessary receiver hitch for towing.

Much of the dash trim has been professionally re-chromed.The body of the truck and the drivetrain are basically all stock.The braking system has been upgraded in material, ALL wheel cylinders plus the master cylinder have been professionally relined in stainless steel.The truck has not given ANY brake problems or needed brake work since this was done. It has been parked for literally a year at a time and then driven again with no (zero) wheel cylinder leaks.I just wish I could afford to have this done for my fleet of old VWs, but for now their parts are so cheap it just isn’t economical.

This truck is being sold because it is actually less useful to me than the 1952 Dodge 1-ton sister truck I also own.After retiring, I find that I can’t keep gas in more than two vehicles and manage it very well, as modern alcohol-containing gasoline goes bad so quickly.I am trying to reduce the fleet to a manageable number of vehicles.

The truck is being sold as-is with no reserve, so if you bid be prepared to drive her home.