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Caretaker

1961 International R-200 Fire Engine

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This piece of Red Power belongs to Quiambaug Volunteer Fire Company of Stonington, Connecticut and was their first new piece of apparatus. Specifications were agreed upon and the order was placed with the Maynard Fire Apparatus Company of Marshfield, Massachusetts in 1961. 

 

The rig started as an International model R-196 “fire truck” chassis as indicated on the data plate. The option was chosen to power the truck with an RD-501, which resulted (I assume) in R-200 badging on the hood. The cab and chassis was assembled in October 1961. 

 

Maynard Fire Apparatus fabricated the body and outfitted the truck.  The pump is a Waterous 750 gallon per minute, two-stage, centrifugal pump and can be supplied by a 1,000 gallon on-board booster tank. Maynard completed and delivered the truck in 1962.  

 

The following info has confused several people over the years. The truck’s data plate lists it as a 1961 model R-196, while it wears R-200 badging. It was delivered to the fire company in 1962 and is titled as a 1962 model R-196. 

 

The truck actively served from 1962 until its retirement in 2010. The fire company  continued to use it as a parade truck until 2013, when a new apparatus was delivered. The truck had been maintained in good original condition throughout its career until this time. With no room to spare in the firehouse, the company chose to move the truck outside. It sat unused and unmaintained for three years until the district board ordered it to be removed from the property. Some equipment and miscellaneous items were removed from the truck and it was eventually donated to a local farmer. The farmer intended on using it to haul hay and pump liquified manure. 

 

The farmer towed the truck to his farm in 2016, where he began work to return the truck to operation. He eventually placed it for sale online when he purchased a truck more suitable for his use. A couple of fire company members found the listing online and began an effort to re-acquire the truck in November of 2017. 

 

I was contacted and asked to take care of the truck as I maintained and operated it while I was an active member of the fire company.  In January of 2018, the truck was purchased from the farmer for $750 and returned to the firehouse. The farmer drove it to the firehouse with a 5 gallon fuel can tied to the light on top of the cab and a hose running down to the carb. It had no effective emergency brake and the brakes were failing as he pulled into the parking lot. 

 

Since then, I have replaced the fuel pump, removed and cleaned the fuel tank, installed two new batteries, serviced the emergency brake, replaced 11 feet of brake line, and bled the brakes.  I will be re-installing the fuel tank soon and hopefully getting the truck back on the road. I’ll keep y’all posted.

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Beautiful Truck. I always thought the R-series and the Fleetstar 2000s were THE IH trucks of the 60s  Eason

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Thanks.  It’s tough seeing what four years outside did to her.  The body is solid. There’s some cancer in the compartment body floors and the diamond plate running boards. I’ve got rust mitigation work to do underneath and the bright work will need some attention at some point as well. 

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Well, she runs. She drives. She stops. 

Got the fuel tank back in and everything hooked up. Changed the fuel filter and filled her up with fresh gas. Started up pretty easy. Wouldn’t throttle up and drive less than half choke without spitting and sputtering. It will idle with no choke but falls flat when trying to throttle up. Drove and stopped pretty well, but with half choke, she won’t make full power.   

Heres a few photos from today. The pic on top shows the location of the fuel tank. 

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Accelarator pump in carb is probably weak. I would find a kit and rebuild carb check vacumn hoses too. Nice truck .i have a 59 r 190 firetruck awd 6000 original miles. I am going to install a pertronix electronic ignition in it. Have done several trucks with them and it helps to have quick starts

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The list number, the 4 digits after the word, is the Holley part number. Looks like a staged two barrel governor carb (primary/ secondary). 

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Number comes back to a Holley 2140G four barrel. Yeah, the carb isn’t something I’ll be taking a chance with tinkering on myself. There’s a local carb shop here that has a tremendous reputation for their expertise and work. I’ll carefuly remove it and take it in. 

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Looks like we’ll be needing a forward exhaust manifold section as well. Ours is cracked. The engine is a RD-501. 

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Does this unit have a 2 or 3 piece exhaust manifold? If it's a 2 piece I have a used one. If it's a 3 piece, I have a complete new old stock unit. I have a used end section for a 3 piece, but I don't remember if it's a front or rear.309314952_DSC00015(2).thumb.JPG.c1d5b80399b473373fd4ea8233a09792.JPG1111741180_DSC00011(1).thumb.JPG.935c2f607f840ca5bf569ad2e628f122.JPG

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It’s a two piece job on our RD-501. I’ll have to get some photos. I’ve talked to a rather eccentric junk yard owner (aren’t they all?) who has quite a collection of older vehicles in the yard. I know several of the trucks he’s got have 501’s in them. He really doesn’t want to give any of them up, but says to keep him in mind if I’m otherwise unsuccessful. 

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7 hours ago, TRAVELETTE said:

There is a complete Red Diamond 2 piece exhaust manifold with intake on fleabay right now.

Just looked at those. Thanks. They’re a bit more than we’re looking to spend right now. 

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The fire company granted me approval and the funds I needed to have the carburetor rebuilt.  The truck is the property of the fire company and I am it’s caretaker, as noted in my screen name. I have to submit a monthly report to the company along with requests for funds and approval to perform work on the truck. This arrangement can sometimes test one’s patience, but I’m making progress.  

I carefully removed the carb and took it into Carbs-R-Us in Thomaston, CT. Kurt has been working on carbs for thirty years and is the second generation in his family to run the shop. He immediately recognized the type of carb as I walked through the door. “Oh yes, a teapot carb. Must be off a T-bird or something weird. I know these pretty well. I’m just about the only one who’ll touch one of these.  Got all the necessary parts. Give me a couple of weeks.”, he said. So, I’m back to waiting for now. Can’t wait to get it back on the truck and hopefully take her for a rip. 

In the meantime, I’m chasing some electrical gremlins with the lights. Bulbs have been the culprit for most issues, but the brake lights will require some detective work. The tail lights are combination lights with dual filament bulbs. The “marker” circuit works, but the brake circuit doesn’t. More to follow. 

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That exact same model fire truck was in a junk yard near me years ago. I got the front clip off of it to put on my R-200 dump truck.  I have the RD406 in mine and I used common GM adapters to mount an Edelbrock 600 carburetor on it since no one around here would touch the old "teapot".

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7 hours ago, yellowrosefarm said:

That exact same model fire truck was in a junk yard near me years ago. I got the front clip off of it to put on my R-200 dump truck.  I have the RD406 in mine and I used common GM adapters to mount an Edelbrock 600 carburetor on it since no one around here would touch the old "teapot".

Interesting. I was wondering what might stand in as a replacement for the ole teapot if it couldn’t be rebuilt. How does it work for your 406?

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Kurt from Carbs-R-Us in Thomaston, CT completed the carb rebuild. Now, I’ve got to get it installed. Can’t wait to try her out. 

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Nice nlooking work Kurt did !!   best of luck

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On 8/24/2018 at 8:33 PM, Caretaker said:

Interesting. I was wondering what might stand in as a replacement for the ole teapot if it couldn’t be rebuilt. How does it work for your 406?

Works great.  I also put in a hanging pedal from a Jeep truck and a throttle cable from Lokar.  I'm amazed and encouraged that there is still someone to work on the original carb. 

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I installed the rebuilt carburetor and a new fuel filter today.  She fired up with no issues and no choke. I ran it for a while at various RPMs and verified that all three throttles worked properly as well as the choke. Then, I decided it was time to take her for a ride down the road and back. The truck ran great, just as she did before she was kicked out of the firehouse. No issues. As I approached the driveway on the way back, I decided to keep on going. I got to the bottom of the hill, stopped, and did a little walk-around to make sure everything still looked good. I turned onto the main road and ran down to a farm stand about a mile away where I turned around and headed back to the barn. Got back to the barn and picked up a few items from my pick-up and headed into town to the local firehouse where I hooked her up to a hydrant, flushed the fire pump, and then pumped water for a while. Time to head home. I turned off the main road and headed up the hill. There’s enough room before the hill to get some speed up enough to make fifth gear. About 3/4 of the way up, I had to downshift into fourth. No problem, but shortly after, it started running crappy and she began losing power. I played with the choke a bit with no success. Came to a stop near the crest of the hill.  She idled good and revved fine, but when I let out the clutch to get going again, she didn’t want to go. So, I stopped and shut her down to check under the hood. I did not note the temp gauge before I shut her down. I checked the connections with the carb and checked the fuel filter and sediment bowl. All looked good. I got back in about two minutes later and started her up again. I watched the fuel flow through the sediment bowl for a minute, then got back in and gave her another go. No trouble this time and she made it back to the barn with no apparent issues. I ran out of time for further troubleshooting and had to get to the house. I don’t know if I ran her too hard up the hill or if I just need to check the carb and all of its connections and adjust. Thoughts?

 

Here’s a couple of photos of the completed install. 

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Restriction in the fuel line or tank somewhere, not surprising in something that old. Take the fuel line loose at the carb and let it run for a while, see if it slows down. How hot was it out? Vapor lock also a possibility.

Brian

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It was between 83 and 88 degrees out at the time. The engine had not been previously run as long or as hard in over four years. 

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Does anyone have a source for the clips that secure the “International” and “R-200” badging to the body?  Thanks. 

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Took the ole girl for a ride again today. Went down to have the truck weighed.  She ran great for the most part. The truck began running weak and lost power going up a hill again, but after stopping for a few seconds, I started up again and finished pulling the hill just fine. Weird. Then, she backfires while coasting down the big hills. Engine temp is good. We may have some tuning to do. She weighed in at 16,780 lbs empty. 

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Fuel tank need cleaning? 

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