View Full Version : Old Mack Semi

Jeff D.
04-27-2006, 12:59 AM
Here's a picture of my grandfather's last truck,the day he bought it.It's a Mack(not sure of the model,maybe a "B"?).It was taken in the early 70's,but the truck was an older model.

The truck had twin sticks,and a 160hp motor(if I remember right).My grandpa used it to haul grain out of the western Dakota's and Montana.It was a very loud truck,and musta made for a long day driving it.

I remember him saying that he'd pulled a few loads in excess of 100,000lbs.It's amazing what can be done with determiation,and lot's of gearing.

04-27-2006, 04:48 AM
Looks like a B61 and they're still out there working and they are still sought after,they make great site trucks but the current generation of drivers are not familiar with the twin sticks found there and those cabs were HOT!!!
I am not sure what engine that one would have at 160 horsepower,the engines I would expect would be the 711 or the 673.The 711 could be gas or diesel and either one was 211 horsepower.The 673 was usually turboed and it topped out and around 250 horsepower at the end of its development but the early versions were in the low 200s as well.The 711 was naturally aspirated but they did turbo it as a dealer installed option which helped it run a little cooler to increase the life of the headgaskets which was a weak point on the 711 but it was said that it did not increase the horsepower any and I agree that I could not notice any difference.They are a great truck and tough as nails.I worked for many years for a company with a fleet of Macks,mostly B81's but but we did have a few B61's as tractors and dump trucks.
There are some still around being driven daily,if you google them you will see some nice wreckers and over the road ones still being preserved by their owners and they still make money for them.Ron G

Jeff D.
04-27-2006, 09:55 AM

Wow,it sounds like you know your old trucks.I'll have to ask my Dad,next time I talk too him,and see if he remembers what motor it had.It was a 6 cylinder diesel,and it had a propane powered block heater on it.That may have been an add on,though.

I'd love to have been able to have the truck now,for nostalgic reasons.

Jeff D.
04-27-2006, 05:02 PM
I checked with the old man,he said it was a 210hp,no turbo,but didn't remember the engine model.He said that it was way noisy too,just like I'd remembered.

He also commented that he could never shift it correctly,even with practice,and bobtailing it was very hard to stop.Said he passed our road up the first time he drove it bobtail,cuz it just skidded and bounced the drive tires,when he slowed down.Apparently it didn't have,or have "working",steer brakes.(or maybe my grandpa just had them backed off??)

04-28-2006, 07:00 AM
It does sound like he had the 711 engine then with no turbo,they published 211 horsepower so that would be in line with specs.I never saw a 673 without a turbo although there might have been some at some point in their evolution.
Those old Mack transmissions were good shifting if they were cared for properly.They had grease fittings on the shift rails on both the main and compound trannies which most did not know about and it made a difference in the amount of effort required to move the shift lever.
The clutch brake also needed to be adjusted properly to aid in your upshifts although if you were proficient enough in splitting the gears with your arm wrapped through the steering wheel and shifting with both hands you could get by pretty good.
Back in those days most trucks with air brakes had what was called a "slippery road control" which was an toggle lever that controlled an air valve which cut out the front brakes so your steering axle would not lock the wheels and disable your ability to steer the truck while braking.If you were bobtailing with the slippery road lever in the slippery road position then you could expect longer stopping distances as a result.It has happened to most of us old guys at one time or another but we learned to diagnose and correct it in about two seconds,hopefully BEFORE we hit something.:))
Once the DOT and OSHA got involved the powers that be outlawed anything that would inhibit braking ability so there went the "slippery road" switch and they brought us spring brakes among other things that reduced the neccessity for the driver to think and reason so we can conclude that the big whoooshing sound we are hearing must be okay if the truck is still moving,right? LOL
The days of pulling a truck to get it started are gone but the trucks of today are safer without a doubt and that is a good thing.
I noticed the extended stack on top of the air cleaner which was an option to get the intake up away from the road spray and blowing snow which sometimes happened on plow trucks.The newer models had two intakes for the air cleaner,one was under the hood and when you turned your wipers on an air diaphram controlled a flapper to redirect the intake air to the under hood position.
That 711 had a unique sound I agree and you could tell one from a distance,especially if it had twin stacks as you say,it would have been neat to hear one with an engine brake but Jacobs had not marketed one yet so the clutch brake was important to keep working and that little defroster fan that you see on the dash there would see a lot of use pulling a long hill because those old trucks used to die on the hills and that was the only breeze you would get.There were access panels between the fenders and the butterfly hood that you could remove with a big screwdriver for a little more ventilation and most guys that could did it.Ron G

Jeff D.
04-28-2006, 08:56 PM
Thanks for all the information Ron.

Would you be able to guess at about what year Mack that was?

04-28-2006, 10:25 PM
I don't remember whether I saw it on a T-shirt, or a bumper sticker, but it's stuck with me since I saw it:

"On the last day,

on the last highway,

the last wheel turning,

will be on a B model Mack".


Jeff D.
04-28-2006, 10:34 PM
That's a good one!!(and may be true too):thumbsup

04-29-2006, 04:24 AM
Thanks for all the information Ron.

Would you be able to guess at about what year Mack that was?

I would guess late '50s to early '60s Jeff.The chrome grill was popular on the later ones so I would lean toward the '50s number.Ron G

07-05-2008, 12:50 PM
Is the truck still in the Family ? Jim

07-05-2008, 09:43 PM
Sweet old Mack. Love the Mercury sleeper.

07-05-2008, 10:51 PM
Since this resurfaced and you guys like, I thought I would post this like. Just thought you might like. http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/1960-Mack-Truck-B-Model-B-61-Diesel-Dump-Truck-RESTORED_W0QQitemZ270251040959QQihZ017QQcategoryZ6 3734QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

RollOver Pete
07-06-2008, 12:50 AM
Talk about going back in time.
I've been sitting here thinking about all the different trucks that I was fortunate enough to drive as a kid.

Way back when trucks were real trucks,
I met an old timer here in So. Cal who took the time to teach me much of what I know about equipment, trucks and the whole construction industry.
Jr. Henderson was in the operators out of Illinois but had relocated here in the early 70's.
He had two B61's of which one pulled an end dump and the other was made into a H20 truck.
That Mack was one of the first end dumps I ever drove.
The tiny cab of that B61 made me feel huge.
I remember how easily the doors opened and closed.
If I remember right, it had a thermodyne non turbo engine and an 18 sp. twin stick.
Then there was his Brockway which also pulled an end dump.
It had a 318 Detroit with a 13 speed.
I think the floor might have been wood?
There was also the Ford L 9000, 13 sp, 318 Detroit and all of them had the dry road/slippery road switch.

In those days, everything was different.
Laws, people, the industry.....everything....
You could get a Class A at 16 back then.
While my high school friends who drove parked in the student parking lot,
I parked across the street in the vacant field.
Always pulling a 40'+ flatbed but with either the Ford, Diamond Rio, International Transtar 4070 or the White.
Since I got out early as a senior, I'd run to Roadrunner in Borrego Springs 3 times a week and bring back a load of palm trees.

Its amazing what we learned and did back then...
Nobody got hurt, everybody got along and made money and most important, I learned back then much of what I know and use today.

The way I grew up back then would have people crying child abuse and child labor laws in todays mixed up world.
Those who took the time to allow me to learn a new trade,
those who taught me how to drive and those who showed me the ropes would be sued, broke and sitting behind bars in todays times.
Yeah.... those were good times.

Thanks Jr. :drinkup

03-17-2009, 02:45 AM
i Know im only 20 years old but my dad has been a truck driver since the age of 16 also and my grandfather a farmer and equipment operator his whole life they both raised me just like that me and my cousins were always the ones wishing we grew up back then. The first truck i drove was a 88 kenworth with a 9 speed but that was just around the shop when i really learned was my first time driving a tandem wheat truck leagally to the elevator during harvest not sure of the year but positive its a 60's mack with twin sticks. that will teach ya to drive a truck real fast now i feel spoiled in my 95 kenworth with a ten speed.

03-20-2009, 03:54 PM
Since I just saw this, I'll mention I drive my '59 B61 all summer long. It pulls my 40ft race trailer all over Ohio and neighboring states.

673/triplex, all 180 hp and lotsa gears. Good running old truck and real head turn'r on the highway. 50 yrs old and still original running gear.

03-28-2009, 07:07 AM
freightrain thats a sharpe bulldog you run circle or strip i know there are alot of dirt tracks in the buckeye and just as many strips the reaosn i know is my wife is from waynesburg,oh. pete you said a mouthfull then you can be by people now the way they were back yrs. ago back then if you racked a gear you got cussed nobody today knows what a triplex or quadraplex is or even how to start shifting them same wit hequipment if you say direct drive they look at you like what is that we had a guy who just knew he was a scraper oper. until 1 day we found this euclid s12 direct drive he could'nt believe they had a clutch pedal and gear stick same wit hthe dozers theyjust can't believe they made them

03-30-2009, 08:07 AM
company i worked for 59 to 61 had 2. new in 1960. they had 150 hp gas with twin stick. i never did master high 3rd to low 4th we called it then. on trip i still remember. 35 ft flat bed with over 8 ft of lumber from south alabama to chattanooga. everything out there passed me like i was backing up. 10th gear only on down grades.

03-31-2009, 03:49 PM
Ya, the old gassers were reallllllly slow LOL!! I know a fellow who restored one and takes it to shows with a pair of 20ft double flats. Really good looking unit.

Ronnie, I drag race. That pic was a National Trails(Columbus), usually run Dragway42 in West Salem, though travel to alot of tracks with the stick shift group I run in. I from Canton.

If you've ever seen the B model shifting videos on YOUTUBE, that's me! Doing ONE handed and TWO handed shifting. I made the videos years ago, they got posted on the internet and four different people have posted it to Youtube.

03-31-2009, 10:29 PM
my uncle harold worley retired from republic steel in canton(electrictian) his 1st wife was a school teacher until she passed awayand his 2nd wife viola baker owned her own trucking company there for yrs. and my wife's to uncles work for timken 1 lives in masslion and the other in waynesburg i love it up there especially around carrolton and surrounding area i worked on dairy farms when i was a kid and just like dairys

03-31-2009, 10:31 PM
Sweet old Mack. Love the Mercury sleeper.X2:drinkup

04-01-2009, 12:26 PM
As in Baker transport? The one in Dover area? It just closed the doors this past winter.

04-06-2009, 12:08 AM
might be i would have to ask her the next time i see her all i was told was from yrs, ago her husband was a play boy and she divorced him but there is 2 sides to every story i do know she had a daughter named cindy and they run flatbed's haulin steel alot cindy still lives in ohio

04-12-2009, 04:22 PM
Here's a picture of my grandfather's last truck,the day he bought it.It's a Mack(not sure of the model,maybe a "B"?).It was taken in the early 70's,but the truck was an older model.

The truck had twin sticks,and a 160hp motor(if I remember right).My grandpa used it to haul grain out of the western Dakota's and Montana.It was a very loud truck,and musta made for a long day driving it.

I remember him saying that he'd pulled a few loads in excess of 100,000lbs.It's amazing what can be done with determiation,and lot's of gearing.
Id say it's a B-61 no doubt the hood is to long for it to be a B-63 and it's got the right radiator. B-75 had a bolt on tank that was not covered. I had a '59 B-61, 673 Thermodine 5+2 no-turbo 175hp? I had a '65 R600 same spec. I now have a '76 RS797LST with a 375 Mack V8 engine 15 speed, 410's 24.4 rubber and runs with the best, it's soon going to be outlawed here. They (Big Brother) have allowed us until 2011 due to the recession. I guess that means by next year along with a recession I will work enough to spend, $60,000? to replace this truck, I don't think so.

04-13-2009, 04:20 AM
The B-75 had a longer hood and the radiator was larger and squared off somewhat.Got lotsa miles in a B-75 hauling a dump trailer.......a frameless Heil for the record.Ron G

04-24-2009, 12:38 AM
The sad story of all the O/O out there! The EPA is going to put you all out of business, yet the major electric producers who burn coal are NOT in compliance with the clean air standard!

By the rules of the board we can't get political here, but if you email me, I'd be more than happy to shed some light on our current monitary troubles!


05-07-2009, 10:20 AM
My Father and his partner had 10 or 12 B models back in the 60's when I was born. Some tandems and some single axles. He still tells the story of hauling gas out of the refinery in Warren Pa. and coming up one of the hills South of Buffalo just putting it in first gear and standing on the outside step on the hot days. I learned how to backup and yard mule on a B model. At the time this was serious Mack country. Unfortunately it is now a Volvo with the famous Bulldog on the hood. Later on we also had a long nose R Model with the Mack v-8 that I think was 325 hp. Man that was the nuts. Could'nt keep it out of the shop though. Times are a lot different.:usa

Dominion 410
05-07-2009, 08:38 PM
We used to have a 72 long nose R model with the 325 V-8 engine.Five speed transmission with the extended range and reverse on another stick.Five possible reverse speeds,right down in bull low in reverse you could walk faster than it could move.12K front end with 38 Mack rears on camel-back suspension.Had a Poclain HC-300 excavator that we moved fully dressed(About 110,000lbs)with it.Fifty ton Rogers tri-axle float,and no Jake-30mph on the highway or the re-caps on the float would disintegrate.The MTO would have a field-day now seeing that going down the road.
Friend of mine had the 500 hp Mack in a CL-that thing could haul:drinkup