Most custom 1930s truck projects have a common platform in the form of a Ford or to a lesser degree, a Chevy because that’s what people bought back in the Dirty Thirties.
Ford dominated the market because they were cheap, rugged and offered an affordable V-8 so sheer numbers made the Ford most accessible to builders.
Dodge trucks were the other end of the sales spectrum in 1935 so they are extremely rare in 2013.
Gary Dack is well aware that his ’35 Dodge is extremely rare so he embraces the scarcity behind his truck as he pointed out, ” These are rare, I’ve seen a few down in Florida but none up here”.
The old Dodge is more well-traveled than most people as Gary explained, “It was from the States originally and it went to England and now it’s back in North America”.
Gary picked up the wayward old Dodge in 1999, “ I got it in England and it was down to metal. I had it there for a few years and got the project started. I did things as I could afford it but I couldn’t just push it into a body shop”.
“Deadlines” are a contrived theme for most car-guy shows but Gary faced a very real deadline with his truck, “We were moving to Canada in towards the end so that pushed the deadline up a lot”.
Gary’s accent is a dead giveaway that he’s not from North America so he had some fun with car guys on this side of the pond when he did get to Canada, “They’d always ask if I brought over an MG or Triumph from the UK “.
His answer was always the same, “No, I brought over a Dodge and a Plymouth”.
Gary knows how much is involved with any project and a rare old Dodge truck takes the scale of difficulty to another level but he was undaunted, ” It took me nine months to build the grille but you can find stuff if you look hard enough but you sure can’t buy anything out of a catalog for these trucks”.
Rare means a certain amount of car-guy envy so Gary did reflect on that angle, “You can build a Ford just from the parts list but these Dodges are totally different. Things like the ram and wings are part of the really difficult pieces to find. You have to mix and match”.
Gary had the basis of the project in the UK before he headed to the new country, “It had a 350 but I replaced it with a 400 over in England. There’s a TH350 automatic and an 8″ Ford read end and it has an airbag suspension now”.
This is a custom “mix and match” job so some of the pieces have serious value as Gary recalled, “It’s got one of only 12 cast ’55 Cadillac air cleaners, boxed frame and four bar rear”.
Gary built this classic Dodge to drive and that hasn’t been a problem since he arrived in Canada, “ I take it to a lot of shows in the city and it’s been no problem plus that air suspension is reasonably comfortable”.
Nevertheless, Gary is realistic about lengthy road trips in his ’35 Dodge, “It’s a little bit cozy in the cab so I don’t know if I could sit in it for six hours straight”.
Gary Dack is not a typical British car guy in the strictest, most literal definition of the term it implies he only collects old British iron.
The best way to define Gary and his 1935 Dodge truck is that he’s a British guy who likes all old iron.