More often than not, a person's love affair with an old pickup truck began when they were both young. Whether it was used for work or play, the truck's characteristic face would forever be a cherished image etched into memory.
For Daryl Martinsen of Fort Worth, Texas, his fondness for Dodge Sweptline pickups grew in the fields of his uncle Dale's South Dakota farm. Unlike the stereotypical image of a bare-bones, base-model stocker, Uncle Dale's '70 Dodge farm truck was loaded for bear.
Dale Kirk special-ordered his shortbed D-100 with an optional 383-inch engine, four-speed transmission, and bucket seats. Daryl recollected that at 11 years old, his Uncle Dale's '70 Dodge was the first motor vehicle he ever drove. His uncle taught him how to drive on their way out to work in the fields each morning. At the end of the day, Uncle Dale's Dodge was still on the clock. Dale would back it up to his Max Wedge-powered Super Stock '63 Plymouth loaded on a tandem trailer. The two farmers would drive to the local track where they'd become drag racers-kind of like a pair of Mopar-blooded Arnie Beswicks. Since then Daryl has owned, in his words, "an assortment of patched-up '70s Dodge Sweptline pickups."
In response to a newspaper ad Daryl had been running, on September 12, 2001, he sold one of his daily-driver Dodge pickups. In the wake of 9/11, Daryl's reaction to the national tragedy was a grim realization that life's simple pleasures all hang by a thread. In a nostalgic longing for the days of his youth spent working and playing hard from the cab of his Uncle Dale's '70 D-100 Sweptline, Daryl embarked on a quest to locate a '70 Dodge pickup and pay homage.
The '70 shortbed Daryl located was in pretty rough shape, but it held the key ingredients of the exact platform he was after. He stripped the pickup down to the cab and bare frame before he realized the truck was as rough as they come. Daryl decided his best bet would be to track down better examples of the sheetmetal he needed from donor trucks. The search went so well that Daryl thought his friends were putting him on when they told him about derelict Dodge pickups they had spotted.
A great truck! And the inspiration for me to build one as well!