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Former Farm Truck: 1948 International Flat Bed

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Thanks to reader Jim S for sending us a link to this great looking old International Harvester flatbed available here on eBay in Venango, Nebraska. As of this writing, there is only a day left in the auction, and an opening bid of $4,500.

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This truck is said to be a neighbor’s truck, long retired from farm duty and used now for parades. It is a one and half ton flat bed now, though when it was in use as a farm truck, it probably had wood sides or maybe some other configuration.

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The truck now shows mileage of only 46K miles, and looks to be in really excellent condition. Not restored but maintained and refurbished, it would seem.

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Amazingly, the paint is said to be original, and looks it. The ad states that everything works except the gas gauge and the hoist under the truck (I am not sure what that refers to – does that mean that this was originally a dumping flat bed?)

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This International will stay retired, I think. It will be fun to drive short distances, but too nice and too original to use as a work truck anymore. It’s pretty big too, so any prospective buyer will need to have space to store it. Therefore, attractive as it is, I think the potential pool of buyers is pretty limited now and I doubt the selling price will go much higher than it is.

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Still, this is a fine old truck, and hopefully whomever buys it will continue its parade duties where new generations can see this example of a working truck from “the good old days.”

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In case you’re interested in buying this truck, Venango is in western Nebraska. The nearest big airport is Denver. Unless you live nearby, it will take some doing to retrieve this old beauty if you buy it.


  1. Avatar photo Dave Wright

    Great old girl…….yes, a hoist means that it is a dump bed. I don’t know about the value. There are a lot of this type old trucks laying around the farms and ranches of the country. Many were only used a few weeks a year during harvest. Few look this nice but I am sure they will trickle out to the market at values go up. For many years, only 1/2 ton pickups carried a lot of value, it looks like they are pulling up the value of the bigger trucks too.

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  2. Avatar photo Mike

    The hoist refers to the fact that most of these old farm trucks where used to haul grain to the elevators, and most were equipped with a hoist or dump bed in order to dump the grain into a floor auger system that would raise it up into the storage bins.
    My Grandfather had a 48 GMC and a 49 Chevy both with hoist lifts or dump beds on them. I learned to drive in them, both in the wheat and soybean fields of southeastern Missouri, If the fields where on the levee district I was able to drive them to the Birds Point Elevators, along levee roads at a young age of 10, but not on the highway from his private owned fields.

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  3. Avatar photo Dave Wright

    Many farmers and ranchers used to park these old trucks on a hill behind there facilities. In the spring they would get them rolling down the hill, pop the clutch and they were running……battery or not.

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  4. Avatar photo Terry J

    I see the handles of what must be hydraulic ram controls in the floor board. Drove a lot of these tough old Korn Binders growing up in Eastern Oregon farm country. Many had 2 speed rear ends, but Dad said “You don’t need it, so don’t use it”. It’s not like they spent much time on the blacktop at “speed”. Back home (also referring to the 1950s/60s), us truck drivers were in the 6th/7th/8th grade. By the time you were a freshman you had graduated to running the Cats and Combines. In pea harvest, the trucks had to run along side the loaders pulled by Cats. A senior driver would have the side hill duty which often required chaining the truck to the down hill side of the Cat you didn’t roll over down into the canyon. I’m talking 10-12 year old kids, 12-14 hour shifts all summer long. That’s how we grew up. Imagine that happening today. :-) Terry J

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    • Avatar photo Joe

      Terry J
      Great story of how things used to be. Not that long ago.
      And a super nice truck with original paint. Owner is a farmer and gets 9 cents from the wheat used in a loaf of bread. Nice context.

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  5. Avatar photo rancho bella

    What a peach.

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  6. Avatar photo Steve

    My dad has a pretty solid 48 gmc 1-1/2 ton with a dump bed in south Texas. He is 78, got it running a few years ago, then lost interest/ ability to physically do a lot to it. It needs brake work. Its 125 miles from where i live so i dont know if i want to take the time/risk to flat tow it up to my place nw of Austin.

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  7. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    Yeah, this was somebody’s pride and joy, for sure. I’m sure the mileage is correct, as these rarely went very far. The KB-5 was kind of right in the middle. ( KB-1 thru KB-14, there was no KB-9 or KB-13) The last of the lighter duty trucks, and probably has the Green Diamond motor. Nice and slow was the order of the day, and you dasn’t be in a hurry. I like the “optional” heater with the 3 diamond logo on it and the crank on the dash opens up the windshield for ventilation ( and bugs). Got a cushy life now, but there was time when this truck was all work and put back in the shed until it was needed again. I’m sure for many farm kids, this was the 1st vehicle they drove, probably late at night when the folks “went into town” to see how fast the grain truck would go. Great find here, and I only hope the new owner takes care of it like the original owner did.

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  8. Avatar photo geomechs Member

    Good ol’ Binder. No power house for sure but that Green Diamond 233 will soldier on for a long time to come. This truck shows that when something is cared for it can last for many years. But, saying that and having worked in the repair business for most of my life, I can also say that so many times I’ve seen trucks that look like a million dollars and inside they’re shot.

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  9. Avatar photo Matt Tritt

    I’d love to have this one, and I’d probably use it. It’s not such a huge deal to put seals in those big hoist cylinders. It Does need a 2-speed rear end or Brownie though.

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  10. Avatar photo Terry J

    Matt’s referring to a “Brownie” auxiliary transmission, usually a 3 speed, hooked in line with the main 4 speed. The 2 speed rear end was a lever of some type on the dash, but the Brownie was shifted by another shift lever in the floor. Count the combinations. FUN to drive. :-) Terry J

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  11. Avatar photo Michael Rogers Member

    –and these trannys were probably NOT syncronized so required double clutching. Watching a good driver shift from low, under, low straight, low over, second under, straight, over etc was like ballet!

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  12. Avatar photo Ed P

    For a work truck, somebody really took good care of this one.

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  13. Avatar photo John

    If I had room I would put her back to work, my father had a truck like that was only in it a couple of times. I have 1984 Chevy C30 I use for work still over 200 hundred thousand miles, not bad for a 30+ year old truck. I still don’t see it as antique. It is stored outside and has very little rust my 1997 F150 is covered in rust large chunks fall off all the time. Don’t make them like they used to.

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