Huge Hauler: 1973 International Travelall

Like the archetypal drawing of a house that a child would do, that’s what I used to think of when I saw a fourth-generation I-H like this 1973 International Travelall. In my old age, I’ve changed 180 degrees on that – simple is preferred now and I appreciate this design. As an architect, I know that sometimes it’s much harder to do a simple design than an overly-complicated one. This huge hauler is listed on eBay in Honea Path, South Carolina with bids of $4,700 and the reserve isn’t met.

The fourth-generation Travelall would be the last generation Travelall and production ended in 1975. The Travelall and also the D-Series pickups were redesigned in the late-60s to echo the popular Scout. This is a rear-wheel drive I-H, something that always causes me to scratch my head because I always think of these vehicles as being four-wheel drive.

From the seller’s description: “Floors, rockers, fenders, hood, and doors all are in great shape only rust issues is above the rear wheel well and the roof skin. Has a spot above the windshield a few spots under the roof slats and above the drip rail.” Clearly this vehicle has had some bodywork that is starting to rear its ugly head, hopefully, it can be fixed without throwing $1,000 bills at it.

The interior has more room than our house does and it looks, sadly, maybe even nicer than our house does. Apparently, the “Carpet is new seats are in great shape the rear seat folds down for a larger cargo area.” There is some wear and age showing on the seats and I don’t know if the carpet looks new to me or not but they say that it is, or maybe it’s that it doesn’t look 100% permanently installed.

This is International’s 392 cubic-inch V8 which should have had around 235 hp from what I’ve found on 253 gross hp is what Wiki says. Does anyone know for sure? Whatever it is there is no question that the next owner will need a giant credit card to keep this baby’s gas tank topped off. I can’t imagine that even with 2-wheel drive it gets much more than 10 mpg. It “runs and drives great I drive it a good bit locally and have made several long trips with it without any hiccups. Cruise control works. A/C does not I think it’s an issue with the temp cable but I haven’t investigated much.” Have any of you owned a Travelall?

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  1. Rube Goldberg Member

    Yeah, the old man had one,( not for long) to pull our travel trailers when I was a kid. They were great trucks, with the same engineering that went into their larger trucks. The old man was used to the older Suburban that the Travelall replaced, and never liked it from the start ( when it did, that is) The IH wreaked of gas the moment the key was put in the ignition. I just have memories of the old man opening the hood, and gas dripping.( and him swearing) He then switched back to Suburbans, with much better results. I read, the 401 AMC motor was available in ’73 and ’74, along with the AMC 6 ( there’s “the blind leading the blind”, an IH with an AMC motor, both doomed) because of a short supply of 392’s, ( a dump tuck I drove went through 2 in a year around that time, and a friend that worked at a school bus company, said they always had 2 or 3 on hand) so this is a bit rare. Travelall’s sold better than the pickups, but still, not many. Cool find.

    • Dave Wright

      They were expensive…….probably 30% more than a suburban. Most IHC engines are measured at net HP. The 392 will pull a battle ship.

  2. JW

    When I met my first wife her older brother had a 2 tone green one, he swore by it but to me it was the most butt ugly thing on the road. I liked the Suburban much better for styling.

  3. txchief

    I currently have two Travelalls, a ’66 and a ’71. The rust problems can be nightmarish, and there are virtually no reproduction body panels. There’s a robust salvage supply of some parts if you know where to look. There are some performance parts available for these engines, and they can make good power if properly rebuilt. Many engine rebuilders have ruined them by unwittingly blocking off the water passage to the right cylinder head. As for the styling, you either love it or you hate it.

    • Eric Godtland

      Where can I find performance engine parts?

  4. OA5599

    Great looker from 20 feet.

    Looks like the side mirrors and trailer hitch may indicate a life of heavy hauling for the drive train. Which the 392 could handle.

    Needs a thorough PPI for rust and engine wear.

  5. SquareLeft

    When I turned 16 in 1965, I had a job waiting for me at a local auto store (another story…). We sold basic auto parts (spark plugs, water pumps, etc.), seat covers (which we installed), porta-walls (!), oil, antifreeze, etc. We also sold toys, guns & ammo, hunting & fishing licenses, bicycles, riding toys and fishing gear (a BIG part of our sales). We also delivered to our good customers – mostly bicycles and toys on Christmas and birthdays… which brings me to the Travelall. It was probably a ’63 or ’64 – powered by a big 6-cylinder hooked to a 3-speed manual trans.

    When I say we sold bicycles, I mean we SOLD bicycles (the owner was a Schwinn dealer)! We had a huge storage area on the second floor and by the week before Christmas, we’d almost always have over 100 bikes up there, some to be picked up and the rest to be delivered. The last couple of days before Christmas, I’d always come in early to get a jump on the delivery schedule. Our customers would ask for specific delivery times (when the kids would be away from the house). The Travelall would easily hold 3 full-size bicycles and a pile of toys. On those days, I lived by my clipboard and wristwatch!

    The Travelall didn’t have power steering or brakes, so it wasn’t easy to push through traffic on residential streets; but being a young guy, I didn’t mind. Looking back, those were good times and now, as then, I realized how lucky I was to have a steady part-time job.

  6. geomechs Member

    When these first came out in ’69 I didn’t like them at all. I thought they took the crates that the ’68 models came in, put wheel on them and drove them too. My dad had a ’69 crew cab 3/4 ton and it was frought with problems although most of them got ironed out as time went on. The A-C was the worst problem. It would leak all the freon out within 10 miles, yet if you evacuated the system and had it on total vacuum, it would hold it indefinitely. Binder started replacing components one piece at a time and finally replaced the evaporator, which solved the problem. I might add that after I got into the repair business I ran into leaky evaporators numerous times, with the same symptoms.

    A guy I know has a massive Binder truck collection. He recently restroed what was originally his father’s Travelal. That is to say, the truck that was issued to his father when he was a blockman for Binder. He did a superlative job (like all the other trucks in his collection). I’ll post a pic when I get back home (at work today).

    • geomechs Member

      For what it’s worth.

  7. BOP Guy Member

    In the early 70’s, my Dad was looking for a truck like this, for a family of 5 and to pull our little ski/fishing boat. He looked at a couple of these (used), then stumbled across a ‘71 Chevy Carryall (nowadays they call them Suburbans, but the factory paperwork and owners manual called it a Carryall). It was two years old, and only had around 10,000 miles on it. Two tone yellow and white, and two wheel drive. So he bought the Chevy, and those are my first memories of being in a vehicle. Great for road trips and camping, that thing was a tank! The IH had a bigger engine, but that never was a problem with the C20 Chevy w/350. It had two row seating for years, and he’d throw a mattress in the back for us to play on while on the road (seatbelts were an afterthought back then!). He eventually bought a third seat for the back that he could bolt in or remove. That was an awesome truck! In the late 70’s, we had a garage sale, with the vehicles parked across the street. A guy asked my Dad if the Carryall was his, and offered to buy it for quite a bit more than he paid for it. So it was sold. Wish he had kept it until I got my license! Anyway, I know this isn’t an IH Travelall story, but it brought back a ton of great memories 👍

  8. Jack Quantrill

    I looked around in ‘72, and this is what was popular for towing trailers. Mine was forest green. The “green machine”. Ugly, but functional.

  9. KO

    I learned to drive on my parents ’70 Travelall in the mid 80s, same body style. Also passed my driver’s test in it. Lots of great memories cruising around San Diego in the purple “Beast” full of buddies.

  10. XMA0891

    The neighbors had the nine-passenger in this same color in the late ‘70’s. I haven’t seen one since then! Great memories scrolling through theses pics… Great write-up, great find!

  11. Allen Member

    I had purchased new in 1973 a Toyota Corona station wagon that was such a phenomenal disaster, along about 1976 I traded it even for an IH Travelall. What a contrast! That IH was one of the best vehicles I have ever owned. I remember my test-drive vividly. How could this “truck” be so smooth, so quiet, so comfortable?!!! Absolutely loved that thing. At that time, I led a college jazz band, and routinely hauled all the equipment, music stands, and about five of the members to concerts all over the state of Minnesota. I could drive it 75 mph on the interstates, or stop/go around town: it got 13 mpg. Never more; never less. That 392 was up to anything you threw at it. The A/C always worked well, and with BOTH fuel tanks filled, on the road it could outlast any or all of the bladders on board. By the late ’70s I was out of the jazz band business and as fuel prices continued to escalate, I went first to a ’76 Impala wagon, and finally to a Datsun pick-up. Life was never the same after that…

  12. Frank Riggs

    We had ’73. At the time we lived in Elmhurst ILL and had a IH dealer, Pollard Motors, and a couple of ‘burbs away was a IH plant. If you dove past the plant there was always hundreds of shoe boxes. I went looking one day at a Scout and drove home with a family of 4 sized vehicle. Growing up in a GM family and working for GM, I HAD to be impressed . With seats as wide as our living room couch and just as comfortable, we floated down the highway. Doing camping road trips and dragging our boat. Filling the back with tents, bags, coolers, fishing gear, camp stoves, etc. We still had room to spare. Chasing all over northern Minnesota and Wisconsin. That 392 was a powerhouse and duel tanks a necessity. I was always impressed at the design and engineering of it. It was actually made to be worked on. Lots of double steel panels, NO plastics. A lite cream yellow that turned a lot of heads. If you stopped any place and another IH T was driving past they would stop and talk or wave. I can only remember one “flaw” these vehicles had. If you just parked, got out and walked about 30 ft ahead turned and looked under at the better than 4″dia. low hanging header pipes they would glow Bright Red Hot ! You had to be very careful camping. Now I drive an Escalade and yes it’s apples and oranges, but I miss that old gal.

  13. chad

    family vehicle for many in the day.
    Wrk vehicle in later yrs.
    Buddy did a hi end paint business in ’80s w/one.

  14. Allen Member

    As a car collector, this is not something I want to collect. Rather it’s a very fond memory that I want to keep. I cannot bring those times back. Buying the vehicle won’t help. The MGs that I collect are not cars from my past, they are but unfulfilled dreams from my past, realized only in recent years. With them, I create new memories. But I sure loved that old beast!

  15. Gay Seattle Car Nut

    Sweet looking Travelall. I used to see these a lot back in the 70s and early 80s. It’s a shame that they were discontinued when they were.

  16. Todd Fitch Todd Fitch Staff

    Hey Scotty – I love these Travelalls. My Grandfather had one, dark green 4×4 with the side-hinged doors, maybe early ’60s model. We called it “The Green Monster.” Similar to this one but with full windows and far more rusty. Thanks for the memories!

  17. Gay Seattle Car Nut

    I regret that I don’t know anyone personally who owns a Travelall, or who has owned one at one time or another. However, I have seen my share of them over the years. I’ve always liked the 1967 Travelall. I’d buy one if I could find one with less than 100ks miles on the clock. Good luck with that, eh?

  18. gpmoab

    We bought a 1971 Travelall in about 1973. 392 engine would pop a backfire through the carb, which would push the choke plate on top of the carb. I learned how to push it back down with a screwdriver so it would start. First trip in it was to the beach in Maine, about 200 miles from home.Our previous car was a Valiant. I soon learned that it took much longer to stop the Travelall than it took the Valiant! After the first scare I was careful to leave more room between us and the vehicle in front of the monster wagon.

  19. Roger

    I never owned a Travelall but did own a couple of IH pickups from the era,a ’73 1110 half ton that my uncle originally ordered new with the towing package(HD springs with sway bars front and rear,auxilary cooler for the transmission)with the 345 engine,727 Torqueflite automatic and A/C,unfortunately by the time I got it the rust on the body had pretty well destroyed it but the truck itself was strong and dependable though,my second was a ’71 1210 4WD ex fire department truck with 10,000 miles on it,in great shape except the busted front axle that I replaced after I brought it home.The Travelall in the listing had been listed on Craigslist locally for $6,000 but evidently no interest,there’s several body issues to be addressed soon if someone gets it.

  20. Gay Seattle Car Nut

    I’d buy an IH truck if I could find one in decent condition. It doesn’t have to be pristine, but it does have to run like it should, everything works like it should, and it’s safe to drive.

  21. T Mel

    Our ’70 4×4. Great vehicle.

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