I Decoded the History Behind My 1963 International Loadstar Work Truck


For whatever reason, having one usually-broken work truck wasn’t enough for me, so I went out and got another. This time, though, it’s bigger and even a little older than my 1966 Ford F600. My new prized possession is a ’63 International Loadstar 1800 with a 16-foot bed and patina for days. But before I got started with it, I had to dig up a little more on where this rig came from and how it landed in my possession in 2020.

Luckily the guy who sold it to me, Craig, had sent off to International for a build sheet on the truck, and he tossed it in the glove box before I headed home. On it is a list of numbers that are hard to decipher, though several of them are spelled out in plain English alongside—options like a heavy-duty front bumper and a T51 transmission. I turned to the web in hopes of translating these cryptic digits and, for the most part, I was able to find out all the important bits about the Loadstar.

I’ve yet to track down what the truck was originally used to haul, though the linesetting ticket tells it was manufactured and then shipped directly to the St. Louis area. I assume it stayed there for most of its life since I purchased it just outside the city’s metro area in a town called Augusta, more than 250 miles from my home. 

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