Monday, 12 December 2005

December 12, 2005 The Truck Story

As a tradesman I've learned over the years that you use the right tool for  the right job. To most people a truck is just a truck, but to a musher,  especially a musher who travels to Minnesota for a month a year and to  Alaska for three months a year a truck is more than a truck. I spend a lot  of time looking at other dog trucks. I will see one and think "Why would a guy do that" or see another one and think "That's a good Idea, I'll have to try that". There is no such thing as the perfect dog truck, everyone has their own personal needs and their own set of circumstances that might make their truck a little different than the next guys.

Here's what we decided that our truck had to have. It had to be bigger, the old truck was a 250, the new one is a 450 (that's twice the payload). It had to be a diesel with a large fuel capacity. It had to be a dually to handle the extra overhang, And it had to be a crew cab to handle the extra people that appear at the races. So this is what we got: 

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The new truck - bare bones
Its a Ford F450 dually diesel crew cab with a 200" wheel base and an extra fuel tank.
Once the truck showed up, it wasn't good for much. Without wheel wells and mud flaps I'm not even sure if it was legal to be on the road. So the first thing that needed to be done was a to have a deck built so the dog boxes had something to sit on.

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Step 1 - Add the deck
Once the deck was on I had the truck undercoated, then added running boards, a bull bar, moose lights and had the windows tinted. (insert picture 3)

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Step 2 - Add running boards, a bull bar, moose lights & tint windows
Now it was time for the boxes. The truck didn't quit fit in Rogers shop, so some of the work needed to be done outside.

With the body of the Dog boxes done Roger moved the truck outside so he could begin the detailed work on his trademark "maple leaf doors".

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Roger works on the maple leaf doors  

After a over a year from the time the truck was ordered it was finally ready for its first trip.

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Ready for the maiden voyage
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...until next year's changes...

There are several other things that I would like to do the truck, but they will have to wait until next year. And I'm sure that once this racing season is over that there will be some changes.


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