3,944 Original Miles: 1979 Ford F-250 Custom Camper

1979 Ford F-250 Custom Camper

After featuring a very nice 26k mile F-150, I spotted this stunning F-250 extra cab. Supposedly, it has only covered 3,944 miles since new! It does look very nice inside and out, but I am always leery of abnormally low mileage claims. This thing was obviously setup for towing, so perhaps it was only used for camping or something? It is being offered by a dealer that we’ve seen before and they are really good at making a car look good in photos. As with any vehicle this valuable, an inspection is probably in order. It’s located in Lakeland, Florida and is listed here on eBay where bidding has gone nuts!

400 V8

This shot of the 400 V8 and a few of the underside do make me questions the mileage. Then again, if this truck spent any time by the ocean it would probably have some corrosion here and there. No mention is made about whether or not the paint is original though.

Options

There’s no doubting that this thing was well outfitted. The option list is long and the price paid was high ($5,200). They even had the tow hitch and wiring installed at the dealer, so it seems safe to assume that they did intend to do some towing right away.

Red Interior

The inside is just as clean as the outside. You can see the control box under the dash for the tow package and the handles for the spotlights. Wonder what they used those for… Perhaps they were hunting jackrabbits?

Fender Shirts

They very well could have been because it looks like this truck started out in New York, but made eventually its way over to Wyoming. The paperwork proves this, but doesn’t offer much insight beyond that. This could be the first Ford truck of this vintage that I’ve ever seen sporting fender skirts! Do you think this was someone’s boat hauler? Or maybe it dragged a camper around the country? Whatever it was, it’s an impressive rig today!

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Comments

  1. Tom P.

    Very nice truck. Trash the skirts!

    • Danny

      Over spray in all the right places. Red on the Vin plate, or is that black paint on the red vin plate? Sorry for the long rant that follows but you will know more about tires than you ever wanted too. But,don’t buy this truck with tires that are 37 year old tires. Yes there is a date on the tire.

      Tires with a three-digit code were made prior to 2000 and are trickier to decode. The first two digits still tell you the week, but the third digit tells you the year in the decade that it was created. The hard part is knowing what decade that was. Some tires made in the 1990s (but not all) have a triangle after the DOT code, denoting that decade. But for tires without that, a code of “328” could be from the 32nd week of 1988 — or 1978.

      Tubeless 9.5×16.5 was the 15 degree “big truck bead” tire that went out of style as soon as they found a 7.50×16 was a better size and it came in tube type and also tubeless sizes, if the wheel had the safety lip on the bead of the wheel. The 16.5″ came as an 8.00, 8.75 and 9.50 size. They were easy to mount and dismount. But you had to have the right wheel and if you had the right wheel you could not mount anything other than a 16.5″ tire on it. At one point the tire industry wanted all the tubeless tires to have a XX.5″ and all the tube type XX.XX. So a tubeless was 14.5″, (think mobile home) 16.5″, 17.5″, 19.5″, 22.5″ and 24.5″. The tube type that matched the tubeless was 16″-16.5, 20″-22.5, 22″-24.5. This was done so you could not miss match a tubeless tire onto a tube type rim. Most trucks went from 10.00×20 (10 inches widex20 lock ring tube type to a 11×22.5 tubeless and 10.00×22 tube type lock ring went to 11×24.5.

      When I was a Michelin truck tire dealer back in the early 1980’s I talked my customers into specking out the new trucks with tubeless tires. I saved them bunches of money and put myself out of business. Tubeless Michelins can be capped 8-10 times and will run 500,000 miles (2 years) on the drive wheels. Oh well. I still have my 1971 IH 1310 service truck with 7.50×16″ drop center tube type tires on it.

  2. Alan

    Speedo cables are easily disconnected. I can’t help but doubt the mileage

  3. Marty Member

    The mileage looks real to me. The details shown under the hood would be difficult to fake if the mileage were significantly higher.

    Cool truck, but I agree, the skirts have got to go!

  4. Dean

    It is about 2,000 miles from New York to Wyoming, so unless this thing was trailered (instead of hauling a trailer) from one to the other, that leaves less than 2000 other miles it has driven in 37 years, or about 54 miles a year. I am continually amused, and amazed, by the patently silly mileage claims that are made by some sellers.

    • Rocco

      And now it’s in Lakeland,FL. How many miles from WY. to FL? The ad says original tires also, so check the date code. I wouldn’t want to be driving on them.
      Nice truck, but don’t treat us like 16 yr. old first time buyers.
      And the skirts have got to go.

    • Bobsmyuncle

      Where is the proof that Barn Finds claims shows a move to Wyoming?

      Seems to me that Speedo has this figured out.

      • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

        Look at the photos of the paperwork in the auction listing. The truck was purchased in New York and there are receipts later on showing an address in Wyoming.

      • Bobsmyuncle

        I still don’t see Wyoming…

  5. Grumpy

    I had a 77 with the 400cid. It was a smog motor, no power and horrendous fuel economy. I put duals on hoping to improve things, but that made it worse.
    It is a beautiful truck otherwise.

  6. Richard McAllister

    The engine bay looks like it’s traveled more miles than shown. Buying a NOS air cleaner does not make it have less miles. There’s just too much black paint in all the wrong places and the rest of the paint is just too shiny. It’s a camper special but the bed has no scratches and it’s very shiny in there. Beautiful truck (expect for the spray painted underside) but I’m not buying the claim.

  7. Bear

    Mileage is JUST ONE FACTOR to consider when evaluating vehicle condition.
    It is NOT GOOD for a car to not be driven! Seals go bad, tires flat spot, fuel systems clog & decay, electrolytic corrosion occurs in old coolant, & even the engine bearings can be damaged by crankcase contaminants.
    I’d rather have a semi-low mileage vehicle that was driven regularly & maintained regularly.

  8. Bob S

    That Black Goop was fairly recently put on the underside, as it is still on the exhaust. Doubting the bed could look like that even if it had 4K. It seems most ultra low mileage vehicles on Barn Finds I am skeptical about and I am not even from Missouri.

  9. Howard A Member

    Whew, I’m sure glad I’m not alone. Someone detailed the heck out of this truck, but in all fairness, it must have been pretty nice to begin with. This truck was set up to haul trailers, and by the looks of it, it hauled a few. ( shoddy trailer wiring, and crappy welds on hitch) Still, I believe this was the nicest Ford pickup made. It had everything. The spot lights are very handy in camping situations. Bottom line, great truck, but not low mileage.

  10. Rocco

    Did anyone see the “DEALER” installed tow hitch in the pics? Pretty cheesy(2″ angle iron welded at 2 spots) for a dealer hitch on an F-250 camper special used for hauling.
    Also in the pics it show’s where the owner bought new tires in ’85 for $600 with the mileage showing 01064. I guess that negates the original tires claim.
    Is this the dealer that flipped that other Ford truck/Bronco(?) that was featured here from e-bay, and someone found it on e-bay with the before pics? If so, they sure know how to detail a vehicle.

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

      This is a different dealer, but they have had some very questionable cars in the past so a third party opinion might be a good idea here.

      • Rocco

        Jesse,

        How do I download pics for my ad submission?

      • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Staff

        If you use the form provided, the system will send you an email that you can just reply and attach them to. Email me if you have any questions: jesse@barnfinds.com Thanks!

  11. angliagt

    This thing is really LONG! I have a ’95 Dakota Club Cab,
    & with a canopy on it,is really hard to judge how much room
    you have behind you while parking.

  12. speedo

    I suspect the angle iron was for large home made splash guards to protect the trailer, not installed by the dealer. The cab looks un-used to me. Wyoming County, NY is just south of Elba. :)

    • Bobsmyuncle

      I think Rocco was referring to the angle iron at the front end of the hitch.

      • Rocco

        Correct

  13. dirtyharry

    New paint, undercarriage paint, a lot of detailing. This certainly is a clean truck, but it isn’t what it claims to be. I say over 100k miles and someone likely had the room to keep it inside.

  14. JW454

    Gotta call BS on the mileage. Also, somebody made quite a few trips through the LMC catalog.

  15. Old geezer

    The truck has clearly been painted. The bottom edge of the hood still shows the residue of wet sanding the fresh paint. The option edge of the hood otherwise shows oxidation which makes you wonder about condition of paint before repaint. I’d rather see it with original paint and buy it than semi restore it and claim it’s original.

    • Larry

      Good eye, I missed that until you pointed it out

  16. JW

    Myself that red does not look like candy apple red, more like fire engine red, never seen pickup with spot lights before, fender skirts are obnoxious on a truck.

  17. Glen

    Actual mileage or not, this looks real nice.

  18. Warren

    That is a professionally installed hitch? Wow.

    • Rocco

      “There’s no doubting that this thing was well outfitted. The option list is long and the price paid was high ($5,200). They even had the tow hitch and wiring installed at the dealer, so it seems safe to assume that they did intend to do some towing right away.”

      This is what it said up top.

  19. Rando

    I’ve seen skirts on a pickup before and I didn’t like them then. Usually an older gent who is weird and extremely proud of his pickup? lol. No offense intended to older weird gents…I hope to become one myself someday or maybe already am. but no skirts on a pickup.

    • geomechs geomechs Member

      No skirts on a car either. That’s coming from an older gent who borders on the weird and proud.

  20. another Bob

    I don’t like the skirts but I’d leave them on it. When was the last time you saw these on a truck? Must have been an extremely unpopular option.

  21. DEC

    Can’t imagine spending 23K+ on this one.

  22. Ralph Terhune

    Did anyone notice that this truck has no A/C?

  23. Joshua Summers

    just fyi the ford pickup pictured is a trailer special not a camper special

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