To The Rescue: 1967 Dodge Chinook Mobilodge

right front

In the 1960s, before the dawn of the age of the aluminum skinned boxes on truck chassis, there were a number of interesting motorhomes. Chinook was one of the earliest builders of RVs, beginning as Mair & Son in 1938. They built small travel trailers, pickup campers and chassis mounts mounted on a one-ton cab chassis. In the 1960s they became the Chinook Mobilodge Company with idea of building Class A self contained motorhomes like this one. This motorhome is listed on craigslist for only $2,000. It’s in Rescue, CA with just over 80,000 miles. There’s little information provided except it runs but needs brake work and tires. The interior is not going to be a pretty sight I’m sure.

right rear

From this side it looks complete and undamaged. If that is tape over the top of the back corner windows, there could be damage from leaks inside. This could be converted into a food truck or even restored as a motorhome. If the fiberglass ends and top are OK, the outside wouldn’t take much work. It probably has a 318 CID engine, so it should be reliable and easy to work on. It looks to me like this would be a much better place to start than converting a school bus if you wanted a motorhome. I wonder what the other side and the inside look like. This could be a very unique motorhome. You certainly can’t argue with the price!

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    The insides of these were so nice, https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/42/48/a4/4248a4717fab326b6b02c608e7d0b3db.jpg
    Seriously though, my old man’s 1st motorhome was a Winnebago, similar vintage on a Dodge chassis, and it was a miserable vehicle to drive. It was a heavy duty truck chassis and it rode like one too. The 318 2bbl. was horribly underpowered, got single digit mileage, all over the road in a stiff wind, and hang on when a semi came at you on a 2 lane.Once you got to where you were going, unless you pull a small car( which further exasperated the mileage problem) going anywhere, meant pull up stakes and take the motorhome. I think this is probably better as a “poker shack in the woods”, as mentioned, I’m sure Rocky Raccoon trashed the insides, and building material prices are through the roof now. Motorhomes have come a long way since this was made, and some DO resemble the link. I’d pass on this.
    Happy weekend, all BF nuts. :)

    • Joe

      lol!

    • Chebby

      Nice one Howard!

  2. Ben T Spanner

    Perfect for a food truck conversion. It would look great parked in front of a micro brewery. Nice flat sides and bigger than the common step van

  3. jesus bortoni

    It looks stout enough to take a food truck conversion.

  4. Jim

    I called the owner and asked if he could put up a few more pictures. Maybe? I agree the 318 is a little underpowered for a truck this heavy, a Cummins swap and some suspension mods including beefy sway bars would make it a nice truck to operate. I’m sure with some upgrades it wouldn’t be an issue to tow a little car or Samurai size suv I’ll wait and see if more pictures follow.

    • Matt Tritt

      I shudder to think what the innards are like. Chinook used a lot of fake woodgrain paneling that doesn’t hold up well to moisture and something like this probably has served as a Mobile Crashpad more than a lodge. And the tape. I considered buying one of these a few years ago that was in absolutely perfect, new condition down in San Diego county. The owner, who had inherited it from his father, sent me interior shots because there were none in the posting. Turns out that it had been protected from the weather inside a barn, but not from mice. The little buggers had gotten into just about everything – including the wiring behind the dash. Not so sure how you could modify the side of these tallish vehicles to make a food truck; the floor is way up off the ground.

  5. Mike

    A few months ago on one of the DYI network, they restored a mid 60’s motor coach, I think it was a Dodge Chinook, but I am not sure, they spend around $10,000 on the interior of that thing. I have know people to take old camping trailer and restore the interior and spend a fortune on it when they could have put the money toward a newer unit.
    But look at me I restore old cars and spend a fortune on them too!!! To each is his own!!!!

  6. Jim

    Not everyone is in a position to refab/rebuild or customize old veh’s but some of us do it cause we love doing the work and making it “mine”. It has nothing to do with the money, it’s not for an investment or to pay our bills. As nice as the new technologies are I sometimes prefer old things and to bring them back to life, it feels good. I’m building a forge now and I’m looking for a 5ton power hammer, I’ve been doing metalwork forever but I want to create from scratch. Everyone has there own things that make them tick.

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