6×6 Project: 1944 Dodge Power Wagon WC-63

If a 4×4 can get you into some wild and inhospitable locations, you can only begin to imagine how the scope increases when you add a third set of driving wheels. That is what is on offer with this 1944 Dodge Power Wagon WC-63 6×6. These were developed for the military, but many found a new life in civilian service once they finished serving their country. This Dodge is mostly complete, and it is structurally sound. If an unusual and quirky project attracts your attention, you will find the Power Wagon located in Boulder City, Nevada, and listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding has reached $6,600, but the reserve hasn’t been met.

The WC-63 was never intended for civilian life, with all models serving in various roles in the defense forces. During its time serving its country, the Power Wagon was used as an army personnel carrier. It isn’t clear when it found its way out of the military. It wasn’t uncommon for these 6x6s to be converted for firefighting duty, as they could access some pretty remote locations easily. This one avoided that fate and is said to have spent years operating as a tow truck. It has a Tulsa heavy-duty winch mounted in the bed, and this operates from the vehicle’s power take-off. The good news is that the Dodge is virtually complete. No major components are missing, and while the frame and body sport plenty of surface corrosion, it does appear to be structurally sound. There is a small area of penetrating rust in one rear cab corner, but repairing this would not be a significant undertaking. The owner has removed the original wheels and had them restored. These have been fitted with Cooper tires, and they look a treat now that they have been reinstalled. Most of the glass is cracked, but sourcing replacement pieces should not be difficult.

The WC-63 is a tough old classic, but this one will require some work to move under its own power again. Under the hood is the original 230ci 6-cylinder engine, and in its prime, it would have punched out 92hp. That isn’t a lot, but the 180 ft/lbs of torque available at a mere 1,200 rpm was this vehicle’s great strength. It was this that made it capable of hauling loads of up to 3,300lbs. The rest of the drivetrain is pretty ingenious. It featured a 4-speed manual transmission with a single-speed transfer case. It was possible to operate the Power Wagon in 6×2 mode in smooth going, 6×4 mode when the going got tough, or 6×6 mode if you suddenly fancied tackling Mt Everest. The bad news here is that the engine is locked. The owner has removed the cylinder head in an attempt to get things turning but hasn’t had a lot of luck with this. It would be worth making a concerted effort because that is a wonderfully flexible powerplant. The removed cylinder head and the carburetor are included in the sale. If the engine can’t be revived, there are a couple of options. Sourcing another engine should be possible, and some companies manufacture conversion kits that would allow the buyer to slot a V8 into the engine bay.

The seat frame is missing, but the rest of the interior is original and unmolested. Once again, surface corrosion abounds, and it will require a full restoration. That is one of the things that I find most attractive about these vintage trucks. The interiors are elegantly simple, and completely dismantling one can usually be accomplished in a day. Any individual with preparation and painting skills can conceivably restore an interior to its original splendor. From experience, I can tell you that there are few things more satisfying than stepping back and admiring an interior restoration that you have completed with your own bare hands.

For the new owner of this 1944 Dodge Power Wagon 6×6, the world will be their oyster. Some people will look at it and find the prospect of performing a restoration to be quite daunting. However, size does not necessarily equate to complexity. Stripping and reassembling this classic would almost certainly be more straightforward than tackling the same sort of task on a 1st Generation pony car or a vehicle like a C3 Corvette. How the buyer proceeds will then come down to a matter of personal taste. If that tough old engine could be revived, that would make it a prime candidate for a faithful restoration. It would also make an excellent foundation for a custom or rat rod build. Someone needs to let their imagination run wild to produce something unique. Is your imagination up to that sort of challenge?

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Comments

  1. Skorzeny

    I don’t know about their truck tires, but Cooper passenger car tires are junk.
    With a locked motor, I would just go with a conversion kit and an inexpensive Mopar V-8. Just to replicate that torque…

    Like 1
  2. EPO3

    Dodge turbo diesel and what ever it takes to get it rolling one bad ass 6×6

    Like 15
  3. MH

    I would drop in a Cummins and leave the rest alone. Drive it and enjoy the looks you will get .

    Like 14
  4. Wayne

    Totally agree on the Cummins! First gen 5.9 with a 6 speed, preferably.

    Like 6
  5. luke arnott Member

    Top end 40 mph?

    Like 3
    • Slantasaurus

      Yeah, but it will do 40mph climbing a wall.

      Like 2
  6. mjf

    I like the tires….

    Like 3
  7. Lee Edwards

    Sorry but this truck is not a WC63. Perhaps the frame is but all three axle 1 1/2 ton WWII Dodges were open cab. This is a post war closed cab.

    Like 3
    • TouringFordor

      From 6-wheel-drive.org: The cab form a 1950’s power wagon does fit on the the frame of a WC62/WC63.

      Like 1
    • Bill McCoskey

      Lee, you are correct, look at the interior carefully and you can see the cab and doors were originally black.

  8. Glenn heigl Member

    That cab has been replaced with a civilian power wagon cab that’s not military

  9. Edd L. Brock

    Get a Peterbilt 389 frame and wheels, get a Caterpillar C32, drop it in this truck, put the front half of the truck onto the Peterbilt frame, cuz I really don’t trust that “surface rust on the frame” statement, and the Peterbilt’s suspension can handle the engine, keep the 6×6 drivetrain, build me a custom tranny (A 6+4 twin stick with one of those old-school splitter cables, because torque.), pretty much build a mini-18 wheeler/rat rod. I’d also get some of those old-school spoke-style wheels, as well, for a more aged look. But I live the Bipolar State of Texas.

    Like 2
  10. Karl

    Lee is correct in that the frame may possibly be a WC63 but the cab is not, the cab assembly looks like a power wagon and if thats the case its a 46 or later year. Another thing is the engine looks to be civilian or all the water proofing on the ignition and carburetor has been removed. IF the cab is in good shape from a rust perspective it worth at least half the entire vehicle price.

  11. dogwater

    I see these on here all the time like the old model T know one wants them they are things of the past the new generation doesn’t want them recycle them in to pop cans sorry

  12. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    And $14025.00 didn’t take it home…..

  13. Karl

    Dogwater I really think you need to visit Mr. Google and try to buy one of these “unwanted” vehicles! You are not in the real world on your statement!
    I am about 2/3 done with a 1950 B2 Power Wagon full frame off frame powder coated along with entire drive line everything on this truck is new or overhauled to new condition. I have had offers of 80k on the truck as it sits when done I will get between 110 and 120k for this truck that you seem to think is better off ground up into pop cans. Barret Jackson sold one a couple weeks ago with a Cummins diesel in it for 200k
    NOT POP CAN MATERIAL!!!

    Like 8

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