Readers Rides

International Scout

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By Mark Weisseg

These are not your typical muscle classic cars by anyone’s imagination. I mean an International Scout?

This one is a bit different so I wanted to enlighten you for a future buy. This one was used at a small little private airport for years to plow snow on the one runway.

Back about 2005 I saw this and yes this is another frustrating tale. I had known this guy since about 1999 and he never told me he had this scout in his garage and that it just turned 5,000 miles. Just five thousand. I was at a loss for words because every Scout I had ever seen rusted and rusted quickly. This was as solid as the day it was new. The trick I was told was they never salted the runway with this truck. When this truck was done plowing they put it in a heated building.

I know the rust issues because I had a 66 and it was held together by bondo and many panels riveted in place. It had a straight six and a three speed on the floor with first gear area the granny gear. Top speed was about 60 and then the rear end screamed, the front end shook,and you held the wheel for dear life. I kept mine about a year and a half and had enough. Hard to get parts for, super high prices, tough to work on and not worth the return. That was back in the seventies and times were different. I took the bomb on a hunting trip and slept in the rear and nearly froze to death as everything was metal with no insulation.

When I ridded myself of the Scout I was as happy as a boat owner selling the boat. ( you know the joke I hope).

Years later I got to drive another Scout but this one had a 345 hp V8 and I can tell you that baby ran. I was very impressed but never enough to buy another one. But backing up a bit regarding this beauty I tried to buy it back in 2005 because of the low miles and condition. You see these Scouts have a very loyal fan base and it revolves around the older guys who own International Truck dealerships. Back in the day they sold these side by side with the big rigs. Some started out just selling the Scouts and later when the vehicle finally came to an end they started selling the big rigs.

This Scout stayed in the family and was never really sold. Just sort of passed down to a grandson who has the brains to keep this Scout pristine. Good boy.

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