About That Dog: 1940 GMC Fire Engine

Here’s yet another fire truck, but this one shows some promise of finding a new life. It’s listed on eBay and priced reasonably at $9,900 or best offer. It’s not too big and it’s shiny and red (at least when it’s wet) and just looks cool. It has less than 20,000 on it. The six cylinder engine will be a lot easier to maintain and repair than the engines in larger trucks. There’s no information provided on this one other that it runs great and drives. It’s about 60 miles north of Chicago in Wonder Lake, Illinois.

This truck looks nicer than most we see for sale. It would have been helpful to have more pictures. Perhaps there’s life beyond parades for this truck as something like a car hauler. You’d make a grand entrance at any car show arriving in this truck with your car perched on a big red 1940 GMC flatbed. It will be interesting to see what ideas you have for this truck.


  1. Howard A Member

    Pretty sharp. Research shows, this is an AC303 with a 248 in line 6 and crash box 4 speed. Most fire engines of this era were open models, so a cab is a definite plus. Yeah, what to do? It’s almost too nice to separate. I’m sure that’s what will happen to this, make a cool stake bed or dump truck. GMC was always a step above Chevy in styling. Does anybody know what that little cup reservoir on the back of the cab is for? Pump oil? Beautiful truck.

    • Howard A Member

      Wait, where’s the windshield wipers? I think it’s a repaint ( albeit, a nice job)

    • CJay

      Cup is most likely for oil. Some older pumps require oil to be injected into the seals to prevent air from entering while priming the pump while drafting (pulling water from a pond or creek) water. Mine has a hand operated plunger type pump to in inject the oil.

  2. Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

    Does anyone else think the dog looks unhappy? Miserable even?

      • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

        Good one, Howard :-)

      • geomechs geomechs Member

        LOL! That’s hilarious!

    • RayT Member

      How would you feel if some dude wanted you to climb up and rest your hindquarters on that wet — and probably cold — metal running board so he could take a picture?

      • Adam T45 Staff

        So, it’s not a hot dog!

    • Wm Lawrence

      He’s afraid someone will mistake him for a Dalmatian.

  3. Coventrycat

    That steering wheel fills the whole cab. I wonder what it’s like to drive and park. I’m exhausted just thinking about it.

    • Ed P

      That big steering wheel is from the days when men were men, or some other stupid crap.

    • Texas Tea

      With these trucks you better have a large steering wheel. They are tough to turn. I recently sold my 1949 GMC 1/2 ton pickup truck and the hard (turning) steering was my least favorite thing about it. Other than that it was a great old truck.

      • Ed P

        It is a great way to build up your arm muscles.

      • Andrew

        It’s a start

  4. geomechs geomechs Member

    A truck like this would be so welcome at my place. Trouble is the fire truck body would have to be retired. Sure would be a great chassis to put a flatbed on.

    • Howard A Member

      Hi geomechs, it would be a shame to separate it out. Someone restored it as a fire truck for parades and such. It must have been nice to begin with. I thought I’d seen this truck, or one like it somewhere, and it was here. At first, I thought they restored this one, but the mileage doesn’t jive, and pump gauges are different. http://barnfinds.com/low-mileage-1940-gmc-fire-truck/

  5. Mark S

    Lose the fire truck back, move the rear axle forward to accommodate a period correct truck box paint matched to this cab. Cumins diesel Alison trans upgrade brakes and steering power of course fifth wheel hitch in the truck box. IMO the most practical use of a medium fire truck or COE.

  6. juan

    Instead to put a flatbed on it why don´t you use to take your collection of Bikes to Shows and leave the box alone? It will be a sin taking it apart!

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