In 1834, Cyrus McCormick received a patent for his grain reaper, first demonstrated three years earlier. This grain reaper became the basis for the establishment of the International Harvester Corporation, and the source of the nickname, Corn Binder.

The International Truck was not normally stamped as to the year of manufacture before about 1969, when the "VIN" number took over from the serial number system. Consequently, while there are ways to tell what model was manufactured in what year span, nailing down the actual year and month of production is often difficult. Trucks were commonly registered as the year they were sold. This explains title variations such as a KB series truck titled as a 1951, when the KB series was finished in 49. Another troublesome change is that in many parts of Canada, and the US, vehicles were titled from the engine serial number. Change the engine, and the title was no longer correct. Few folk ever needed to worry about that, until the vehicles became collectable. Some states have made a process available to title vintage vehicles purchased with only a Bill of Sale. This varies, but normally entails a lengthy period before full clear title is approved.

The term "Stock", meaning standard in all trucks of that model, is not a very useful term when dealing with IH. The company only built trucks that were ordered, and the equipment was widely varied on the same model, one behind the other on the assembly line. Unlike the Big Three, IH seldom built a set of identical trucks for the dealer to sell until the last few years of production. Over all they were each, by virtue of equipment being chosen by the purchaser, a custom built truck, right from the word go! 

Take the following as collected, best available information, and not necessarily the only information. We welcome any updates.

Many of the US built IHC trucks can be traced through the Wisconsin Historical Society

WHS were given a great deal of the International Harvester (USA) company records when it was sold. These include an incomplete set of Line Setting Tickets, the build recipe for the truck on the production line, and production records with serial numbers and dates. The Canadian built trucks, which have many different equipment options that were not available on  the US built units, were not so lucky. What records were saved, ended up in a collection in the University of Guelph, but at this point it seems likely that there are no Line Setting Tickets. A dealership owner may have kept a set of the Micro Fiche that have this info, but so far, none have been made public to our knowledge. For trucks after 68 you can request a copy from a Navistar Dealer, and they may be able to help with Canadian trucks. We have not been charged for any we have requested. Give the year, model, and complete serial number.

The Wisconsin Historical Society will sell a copy of the LST for a US built chassis serial number, if it is in the collection. The collection is being added to all the time, so updated records are the constant. You can ask for a copy of your US built truck's LST here:

email: askmccormick@wisconsinhistory.org

 

McCormick-International Harvester Collection, Library-Archives Division,

Wisconsin Historical Society, 816 State Street, Madison, Wisconsin 53706

Office   608.264.6410,

FAX       608.264.6486

WEB http://www.wisconsinhistory.org/libraryarchives/ihc/search.asp

 

I would encourage anyone who is looking for a forum of information about these trucks to check out OLD IHC.ORG. Membership is free. These are possibly the best collection of informed IH folks on the planet, willing to offer help and share knowledge.

http://oldihc.wordpress.com/

 

 

A couple of notes on sales, parts and safety.

The very nature of the sale of used parts of vintage trucks invites the high risk of a failed part. Every effort is made to determine the functionality of the item previous to it being offered for sale, or the price and description will reflect the less than perfect condition. Condition will be displayed, when possible, in pictures, so if you can not attend to view the item, ask for any pics that you feel you need. Shipping of items over 50 pounds or 22Kg. will be the responsibility of the buyer to arrange, including whole trucks. We have suggestions to help make this possible. We must assume that you actually know what part you need, but we will try to make sure that what you buy is what fits. If an item is not as described, or pictured, then we will either replace it, or refund the price, less return shipping, at our discretion. Since we have no control over how long it may be before the item is put into service, there is no warranty implied or offered. Sales are on a buyer beware basis.

Some of the trucks offered here are on consignment. We can not be held responsible for the owner's description of the truck. We see the same pictures that you do. Not the truck. Such trucks or parts will be labeled, "Consigned".

          Safety tips are given as warning only. You must decide what you will do.

The so called Widow Maker Rims:

These things KILL even without being on a truck! Years of rust and abuse beyond the life expectancy of the rim, make working on them very dangerous! Even letting the air out of one has caused injury and death!

Not all split wheels are widow makers, so if you do not know which is which, email for descriptions, and pics. This is a cross section of the "WIDOW MAKER TYPE" wheel. It is fairly easy to see the potential problem.

If you have these wheels, do not attempt to dismount the tires, unless they are already flat. If you must dismount tires, either puncture the tire by running over something intentionally, or tie a chain thru the wheel, then remove the valve core with the wheel still on the truck, and get away quickly. Do not remount a tire on this style of wheel. There is no certain safe way to do so! Most tire shops will refuse to work on these wheels! Most of us are not qualified to decide if a wheel is safe to use.

 From time to time we come across original, IH, or period correct, PYRENE fire extinguishers. Since Carbon Tetrachloride (Pyrene) has been proven to be a carcinogen, these extinguishers are never accepted unless dry. This does not totally eliminate health risk, but does limit the chance of exposure from spillage. Such things must be purchased at your own risk.

 

Electric Tachometers containing Mercury batteries will have those removed, and safely disposed of. These units may be hard to find a replacement battery for. If there is information on the battery, we will save that.

 

LEAD PAINT and FILLER WARNING 

 It is entirely possible to encounter lead based paint, and lead was commonly used as body filler in these trucks. Lead vapour is poisonous. Use of a cutting disk, or torch, on leaded body panels, or lead paint, can be hazzardous to your health. Use safe techniques to remove such hazzardous materials.

 

BRAKE CLEANER

Heating, or cutting any item that has had brake cleaner sprayed on it can give off a massively toxic and deadly fume!