Ron Esau is a high energy guy who has made a living as a trucker for many years.
We found him and his unusual ride at a car show this past year.
We mean unusual because Ron brought his custom 1965 Kenworth big rig to the car show.
In fact, his semi-retired Kenworth still had a part time job because it hauled a trailer to the show so the band could have a bandstand and impromptu stage.
The old big rig was Ron’s money maker for six years when he used it on the road from 1999 to 2006.
Ron named the Kenworth ‘Old Buck‘ in honor of its buckboard ride and few long haul truckers would disagree with the name. The Kenworth covered a lot of territory during its six year run with Ron and was driven on routes ranging from Colorado to northern Alberta, Canada.
Ron liked the old Kenworth well enough to hang on to it after he retired it from active duty. He had an entirely new game plan for the big truck as a family wagon. The truck was originally a day cab and had a sleeper unit from the 70s added to it.
The truck eventually reached a point where Ron had to either revamp it or turn it into a show truck or, as Ron said; “I put a little love into it.” Ron must have thrown some serious cash in with all that love because Old Buck looks great these days.
Ron turned the sleeper into a family hauler and now the rear compartment boasts stylish captain’s chairs for his two boys to ride in comfort on holiday trips. The family has traveled from their Alberta, Canada home to Hutchison, Kansas in the Kenworth and they have done it in style.
The load is lighter on the family trips because they pull a holiday trailer behind the Kenworth. The pace is relaxed and the old truck is comfortable at 60 mph on the road. The truck rev-limits out at between 70-75 mph; however Ron sees no need to push the 400 Cummins past its comfort zone.
The truck attracts plenty of attention at shows, even when it is not hauling the entertainment. Ron called it a “driving museum” and he enjoys his role as custodian of the old big rig.
Old Buck also attracts plenty of attention on the road, particularly with other truckers who recognize the truck is almost 50-years-old and still on the road. Ron told us his travels in the United States garner even more attention from the truckers for Old Buck.
The vintage big rig hobby has a loyal following, mostly from truckers who drove them and truly appreciated them as faithful kings of the road in a bygone era.
We at MSCC salute people like Ron Esau who decided to not only to preserve a vintage Kenworth, but to drive his big rig on long road trips long after he made a living from it.
These days it is strictly for family, fun and nostalgia when it comes to Old Buck.
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