Dodge Pilot-House Era
Truck Club Newsletter

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February, 2010 Issue


Is Pilothouse the correct spelling, or Pilot-house? It is possible to find both spellings. The 1948 Dodge literature introducing our new B-series Pilot-house trucks use the hyphen. And so does the book, "Dodge B-Series Trucks." So, from now on, we will always refer to our trucks as Pilot-house trucks. The best trucks on the road, then and now!



"All B-Series trucks are collectable."

              Don Bunn


This is the first of 6 issues for this year. You can expect more newsletters every other month.

New to our club is a Ricoh 3800C copier. Why is this significant you may ask. It allows us to print our own color fliers, brochures and calendars without the expense of an outside copy shop. If fact, your 2010 calendar was printed using it. And we now have a new Pilot-house brochure to highlight and explain our Pilot-house trucks. Also printed on our newly donated copier. Another feature is the ability to scan a stack of pages, thus the many scanning projects that have finally gotten done.


Last year we wrote to mention that Don Bunn, author of, "Dodge B-Series Trucks," was in the beginning stages of Alzheimer. I received the following message from his wife after sending an inquiring email. This is an edited response:

"Thanks for asking about Don. We have moved as I could not handle the house and taking care of Don so we moved into a condo.

He still continues to struggle with the Alzheimer’s. He does not remember much these days, not the days of the week, our son’s name, if and when to eat, etc.  but he can still shower and shave by himself and on good days he still remembers some of the books he has written. It is such a slow progressing debilitating disease.

Thanks so much for thinking about Don! I truly appreciate it!


Many new reference publications have been added to the DPETCA web site. The process to disassemble these books, scan them and then make them presentable for the web is time consuming. Hopefully, you'll find them useful.

We have many members with trucks that are Canadian or Export built. This should be helpful:
1951 - 53 Canadian Truck Parts List for Dodge DG-DH and Fargo FO-FP Series trucks

Trying to track down the year and model number, but all you have is the serial number. This reference should help: (Thank you Tony Buckley for scanning this).
Serial Number Guide for Plymouth, Dodge, DeSoto and Chrysler cars. Also, DeSoto, Dodge and Fargo trucks.

Have an Australian built truck. Here's an owners manual:
Truck Owners Manual for Australian Dodge, DeSoto and Fargo trucks.

An excellent reference for properly rebuilding your 6 cylinder car or truck engine:
Chrysler Six Cylinder Industrial Engines Maintenance and Parts Manual.

Have a big Dodge truck? Here's an owners manual that might help:
Drivers Manual for B1F and B1H trucks.

We have added many new color chips, AND have the color codes for the wheel color. Check it out if you're trying to match factory color.
1948 - 56 Dodge Truck Color Charts and 1949 - 1952 Dodge color codes for DuPont and Ditzler paint. Now includes information for wheel colors.


A website that is a complete Taillight and Parking light reference to help decipher lens codes is here.

Frank Mann is a new member living in Rancho Murierta, California. This is a section of what he included with his membership:

A quick history of my project: my buddy, Craig, ran across an old Dodge pickup that had been abandoned in a field close to Georgetown, CA. After paying the property owner $200. we hauled it to Craig’s shop in Rancho Cordova. After some research we determined that it is a 1948 B1B. It had an engine that still had a chain on it from trying to either get it out or in. After tearing the truck apart we found that the engine really didn’t fit. We think it is a Power Wagon engine because it’s oil pan sump is reversed. The radiator was missing and when we got the gas tank out we discovered it was leaking. By this time you would think we would have sold the truck to a scrap metals yard, but no, we found another 1948 B1B around LA for sale and hauled it back to the shop. We have torn it down and have purchased some sandblasting equipment. Our plan is to sand blast and paint the best parts of both frames and bodies.


Mark Poggendorf and Sean Hines showed me the mockup for a new Pilot-House firewall. They plan to begin manufacturing these in the near future for anyone doing a V8 engine conversion and needing to "tub" the firewall. This will be a complete replacement. Nice and clean looking too I say.

Also, news of a front end conversion with straight torsion bar suspension like that used in the early 1970 Satellite and Cordoba Chryslers is in the works. Stay turned for more info on as this develops.

A PERSONAL NOTE FROM DON BUNN: (This week we received this note from Don Bunn. As mentioned above his health is not well, yet he was able to get this letter to us and we share it here.)

Gentlemen thank you so much for the issue of the 2010 Dodge Club calendar that you were so nice to provide me.
The calendar is very well done, outstanding is the word.. The trucks that were used for the calendar are also outstanding.
I can't get over how beautiful the owner's trucks are. Outstanding in every way is what I see. I would have to say that a lot of members worked a lot of time to put this together.
I also have a Pilot-House Truck --A Dodge 1952. It's a very good truck but it is not of the caliber of your owners. Believe it or not I have already told my son that this spring I will fix everything. Then the 1952 can be driven and I can show it off.
Question, do all your members live in the West or do other members live here in Minnesota and other parts of America?
Thanking you and I hope that someone else contacts me again.

Don Bunn

Editors note: Don can no longer respond to emails, but if someone living in the area would like to visit him from time to time I will inquire with his wife to arrange this.


Here is humor just as it was printed from magazines in the 1940's and 50's.

The one-armed stranger winced as the talkative barber cut deeply into his left cheek. "By the way," said the barber, "haven't you been in here before?" "No," replied the stranger, sadly, "I lost this arm in a sawmill."

"Honey," beamed the husband, "if I had it to do over again, do you know whom I'd marry?" Wife: "No, whom?" Husband: "You." Wife: "Oh, no, you wouldn't!"

Bars are something which, if you go into to many of, you are apt to come out singing a few of, and maybe land behind some of.

When a girl looks good in a bathing suit, a man usually looks good too.

The little girl was showing her playmate her new home. "This is my daddy's den. Does your daddy have a den?" Neighbor girl: "No, he just growls all over the house."


These are quotes from, "The Job-Rater For Truck Users" magazine:

When driving a truck down a steep grade, use the same gears you would use if your were driving up the grade.

If the engine fails to start readily when hot, pull the throttle control all the way out, push the choke all the way in, then step on the starter pedal. Unvaporized fuel which may have accumulated in the manifold or cylinders will be quickly cleared out. Push throttle control button in as soon as the engine starts.

A highway engineer suggests double right-hand lanes on upgrades as a solution to the traffic problem in hilly country. Trucks ascending a hill in low gear would stay in the outermost right-hand lane. Passenger cars could breeze past them in the innermost right-hand lane, without interfering with traffic in the opposing lane.

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