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1973 International Honest Truck!


Can you believe this 1973 International Harvester stepside pickup is for sale here on eBay with an opening bid of $100 and no reserve? Another one in the Barn Finds series of honest trucks, this one may have a few rough edges but is almost ready for some more work! It’s located in Berkeley, California.


Let’s get to the source of that almost right away. The 392 V8 engine requires either replacement or rebuilding. Parts are available, for example, the camshaft that the seller says the engine needs going for $134.99 here. So you know you have at least some engine work in front of you or your friendly neighborhood mechanic. You’ll also notice the air conditioning compressor on the left of this picture that makes those of us in the South smile, and the power dual-circuit brakes you would expect to see on this late of a pickup.


The truck looks a little better than it probably is in these distance photos, but the seller is kind enough to include detail shots here, here and here of some of the rust issues. The hitch and trailer electrical connections will just add to the utility of this great truck!


I think this might be the best angle for the truck. I love the body color steel wheels and hubcaps, although I’d choose blackwalls at the next tire change! The white tank in the bed is currently being used in lieu of the factory fuel tank. By the way, the 1110 model means this truck has a solid front axle for more durability rather than an independent front end, despite having the same payload weight rating as the 1010 model.


The bed floor looks pretty solid, and the seller has already had the this standard fuel tank dipped repainted to replace the auxiliary tank.



Inside, we have the usual blanket/seat cover, a slightly cracked dash and what in the early 1970’s passed for ergonomics! IH’s were always relatively rare, with less than a 5% pickup market share in the 1970’s, but the step side bed makes this one even more unusual to see. I’d certainly drive it as my honest truck–how about you?




  1. socaljoe

    Nice truck, although it probably looks much better in the photos as most car do…

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  2. Howard A Member

    I get a “thumbs down” every time I complain about these motors, but say what you will, I’ve seen more than one that looked like this (partially dismantled) I’ve got to say, this step side is a pretty nice looking truck. Don’t recall seeing too many step sides.I do believe this truck would benefit from having a modern engine, like the Cummins diesel or even just a gas straight 6, but I certainly wouldn’t repair this boat anchor of a motor. It really isn’t a bad design, and the end of IH’s pickup’s were right around the corner. I’d probably buy it just for that reason, as I feel, IH was the best truck ever made, in all it’s forms. Probably get this cheap, slap a decent motor in this, you’d have a great truck. Can’t go wrong here.

    Like 1
    • wuzjeepnowsaab

      I think, @Howard A, maybe the reason you get thumbed down every time you say it is because you can say it about ANY vintage vehicle. They’d ALL benefit from a modern drivetrain, don’t you think?

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  3. wuzjeepnowsaab

    As rare and seldom seen as IH pickup trucks are, step side IH trucks are real unicorns. If this wasn’t so far away, I’d be jumping in on the bidding fun

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  4. Tom Hall

    As a life-long resident of the rust belt, it is somewhat refreshing, though not surprising, that the International truck, scout, whatever, rusted even in California albeit at a much slower pace.
    Here a ’73 International truck was a heap of iron oxide by 1975…maybe even 74

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  5. Dave Wright

    I have owned a bunch of these and my dad had a fleet of them when they were new. IHC’s are custom built….every single one. You could get an independent front axle in any of the 1/2 tons. The 392 is unusual in this truck. They look the same as the 345 or even the 304…….I am betting on the 345 4 barrel. The 392 has huge torque and horsepower usually used in heavier 3/4 or larger trucks and travelalls used for towing. They were used in everything up to a 5 ton truck. Great engines but they did not handle heat as well as the smaller bore engines. Would crack heads if not driven carefully. I have always felt these bodies were not as well made as the earlier pre 69 trucks. The engine core alone on a 392 is worth over a grand. They are not cheep to build, everything is forged or sodium cooled, IHC parts have always been expensive.

    Like 0
    • wuzjeepnowsaab

      Like AMC/Jeeps, IH had one small block and they bored it for displacement. The 401AMC liked to overheat as well…but tons of power/torque numbers just like this 392 would have. But just like FSJeeps, this is a total airplow and will get you 10mpg city or highway. Fuel economy isn’t why you’d buy this though…it’s more about smiles per gallon than miles per gallon :)

      I’ve looked at the eBay listing 3 times now…I think I need an intervention. At the current bid, even adding a grand for shipping this is a steal on a rare truck

      Like 0
  6. angliagt

    There’s something about this – step side bed,the Red color,
    or just because they’re so rare,that keeps me coming back to this.
    Nice to see one of these,after the sea of Chevy,Ford & Dodge
    pickups. Good deal,if the price doesn’t go too high.

    Like 0
  7. geomechs geomechs Member

    I like this truck, and I have to say that it’s tempting. The motor is going to cost some money to get it back in shape as Binders have got to be amongst the most expensive to work on. However I wouldn’t substitute something else. An aftermarket Holley carburetor would wake it right up. My Dad had a ’69 crew cab with a 392 and it ran really well. A little hard on gas but back then, so was everything else.

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    • Dave Wright

      Hollys were standard equipment.

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      • geomechs geomechs Member

        Hi Dave. You are right, Holley supplied nearly all the carburetors to Binder. For the most part they worked OK but oftentimes ran into leaks and vapor-lock situations (yes, Howard, I can smell the gas too). The larger (V-line) motors used a 2-storey (‘tea-pot’) carb to avoid the vapor-locking situations.

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      • Dave Wright

        Hollys were never our favorite carbs. They required much more maintenance that something like a Carter. The hot rodders liked them because they could be adjusted to whatever they were using them for. But if you wanted to fix it once and not have to tinker all the time, Hollys were not the best choice. We considered it a weakness in the IHC V8’s particularly the post smog 392’s. Another interesting part of the IHC V8 is the intake manifold, it has a higher “rise” than aftermarket performance high rise intakes of the time.

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      • geomechs geomechs Member

        I’ll definitely agree with the Holleys being more of a tinkerer’s carb. But I actually got along with them quite well. I changed from the Autolite/Motorcraft 2bbl. carbs on my Ford trucks with the FE motors to Holley 500 2bbl. carbs and that was one of the best things I ever did. My ’85 Bronco with the 351 HO had a Holley 4bbl. on it and it worked just fine–albeit after a lot of dialing when it was new. My Dad had a ’76 Dodge 3/4 ton with a 440 and it was a bear to start hot. Replaced that plastic mixer with a Holley and it worked great. Of course there were lots that never should have seen a Holley. A Rochester Quadrajet was hard to beat on a Chevy or most GM cars and light trucks for example…

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  8. Chris

    Is it me or does that gas tank look like it doesn’t fit that truck as the filler comes out the center of the tank (for the most part) while the filler cap on the truck is just behind the passenger door? To my eye that doesn’t seem to be a behind the seat tank.

    Like 0
    • Dave Wright

      The gas tanks fit on the inside of the frame rails. I think in the photo it is missing the rubber extension hose.

      Like 0

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