BF Exclusive: 1970 Ford Firetruck

1970 Ford Firetruck

Old firetrucks have been picking up steam in the collector car world lately. Storage requirements do limit their appeal, but you can get into one of these big rigs for not a lot of money. Take this 1970 Ford C850 for example. Don, the seller, claims that it has only covered 20,000 miles since new! That’s believable too because most small town firetrucks never see much action. It may not be your typical classic, but it would be a blast during the summer months. Just think of the parades and events you could attend! All the little boys would look up to you and all the women may even take a second look thinking you are a fireman…

492 V8

You may not have the muscular build of a fireman, but anyone who can drive and work on something like this thing deserves a little respect. This cab over engine truck is big and tough. The C-Series truck was one of the longest built commercial trucks around having started life in 1957. This one features a 492 V8 and a manual transmission. It isn’t currently running, so some investigation may be in order before buying it. If the engine isn’t seized though, it shouldn’t be too hard to get running again.


The box is claimed to be a Ward LaFrance job and no mention of the pump or hoses. This is going to be a big project for someone, but the price does seem fair considering what all you’re getting. Don would like to get $1,800 or trade it for a bucket tractor,  gator,  ranger,  mule,  truck, or something fun. You can contact him here via email or just give him a call at (813) 416-0999. The truck is located in Dover, Florida and if you end up stopping by, you may want to take a look at the other truck Don has sitting there.

2006 Ford F250

This is a 2006 Ford F250 and it’s equipped with a 5.4 Triton V8. The only problem is that the engine is currently seized up. So, this is a “mechanic’s special” and Don is asking $1,800 for it too. We wouldn’t normally feature a truck this new, but we thought someone might want to drag home both as a package deal. Thanks for featuring these with us Don! We hope your trucks find good homes where they get the attention they need. If any of you have an old firetruck that you’re thinking about selling, please consider getting it featured on Barn Finds!


  1. Van

    Why don’t house paint companies buy these.
    Often they come filled with ladders. Most are low mileage with the best maintenance.
    Sounds silly? Compare the price of a new f150 crew cab, and trailer.
    Think of the advertising value of a fire truck.

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    • DAN

      that is a great idea,never heard that one before.
      I like the way you think:)

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  2. geomechs geomechs Member

    I don’t like to be skeptical but a 492 V8? I know that’s unquestionably a Super Duty V8 in that truck but I always thought they came in (3) displacements: 401, 477 and 534. In the mid-70s Ford brought out an 880 series with a 475 V8 which was essentially a 477. I never understood the significance of that one.

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    • Howard A Member

      Hi geomechs, I thought that too. I hadn’t heard of a Ford 492 either, but it never ceases to amaze me, how many different displacement motors there were. Seems like you hear of a new one everyday. “Doesn’t run” is just an open slate to what’s wrong. The low mileage has little to do with the condition of the motor. These trucks idled ( or low rpm’s) for hours at a time, so it could be just plumb wore out. I wonder if there are any big block motors left in the world today.

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    • phill

      I don’t think that Ford ever made a a 492….they made both car and truck versions of the Lima 429……the 475 was a 477 Super Duty that was installed in certain 800 series trucks, which were heavy duty, not Super Duty models……it was governed at a slightly higher RPM, had a few moe HP, and did not carry the Super Duty warranty, which I think was 100,000 miles ….they were the F880 single axle and the L & LN880 tandem…..they were really good trucks

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  3. Bobsmyuncle

    Van, thats a lot of vehicle just to haul ladders.

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    • Crazydave

      Haul ladders and paint and crew. Room for the lunch boxes and drink coolers, too!

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      • Bobsmyuncle

        You could do all that with 8 000 less pounds, no air brakes or special licensing.

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  4. Steve

    I would buy the fire truck in a heart beat, if I didn’t live in Cheney, WA, and him in Florida!

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  5. Timothy Wasson

    Remove the rife stuff and build a RV Trailer like on the back….very nice class C !

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  6. Tony Grazziano

    These Fire Trucks are a pretty good buy and are usually in top condition and if not they will tell you if its from the fire department direct. I have had four in my life time and I will tell you whats involved. You need a good place to store it besides being in a farm barn where the mice and other critters decide to have lunch on the edible pieces. You need to keep the batteries charged and the oil and water levels need to be checked. Now the good stuff is all the money you spend on tires and major repairs, then the cost of diesel fuel when you get 4 to 6 miles per gallon. Then you have the insurance which is not too bad,but when you tell them you will have kids riding on it in parades etc the premiums will rise.
    They can be fun to own if you have a nice storage facility to keep it out of the weather because if you don’t it will deteriate very quick plus the chance of vandals stealing and destroying gauges and other equipment that’s on the truck.
    People will want to ride on it in parades and when its over you have to take it back and have it for the next event. Its really fun when you buy it but if you don’t have a place to keep it and afford to get the parts or even find parts its even more fun to pass it on to the next person that wants to have fun.
    There are several people in the United States that have the property to store the trucks and a place to work on them and that’s all they collect . they have some trucks that look like they were fresh out of the factory. These collectors have a wealth of knowledge of what they collect. Most rural area’s use commercial chassis and the bigger cities have trucks that have custom cabs and they are coming bigger and bigger every year and the costs keep rising.

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