Sometimes when a commercial truck gets retired from service, someone comes around and converts it into a pickup. The result is often garish, with feet of ground clearance and a bed that doesn’t fit the cab’s design. For a time, this niche was just popular enough that even commercial truck manufacturers joined in on the madness. But despite its handsome looks, this 1952 Ford F-7 Big Job never left the factory looking as good as it does now.
Converting a commercial truck into a pickup is a creative way to reuse some old equipment. If done right, they look pretty awesome, too. I was going to feature another one of these custom trucks on Monday’s Dopest Cars before something better came around. Then I came across this 1952 Ford F-7 Big Job on Bring a Trailer, and I haven’t stopped looking at it since. This is how you build a commercial truck-based pickup.
Ford’s F-Series was born in late 1947 for the 1948 model year. FoMoCo says it watched as post-war Americans moved to cities and suburbia, taking their pickups with them. This gave Ford the idea to expand their pickup’s scope to cover a variety of purposes. The new trucks would be easier to drive with bigger cabs, better visibility, some creature comforts and style.
And of course, they’d still be able to do work.
The result was the first-generation of the Ford F-Series, and Ford built enough classes to cover a half-ton capacity (F-1) to cabover heavy-duty commercial trucks (F-8). F-7 and F-8 heavy-duty commercial trucks were marketed in brochures as Big Job trucks, boasting performance and then class-exclusive V8 power. Later, an even bigger F-9 would be added to the Big Job truck lineup.
These Big Job trucks were available in an array of configurations. Buyers could pick them up as semi tractors, straight trucks, fire engines, flatbeds, dump trucks, grain trucks and more. But one configuration that I could not find advertised is a pickup. That makes sense as commercial trucks are a bit overkill for pickup duty.
So, this 1952 Ford F-7 Big Job is a custom job, and it’s a build that looks so good that it looks like it could have rolled out of the factory that way.
Unfortunately, the person who knew about this truck’s history has passed, so the seller doesn’t know much. Thankfully, someone with access to a parts catalog was able to provide insight into this Big Job. It rolled out of the factory painted in green, and it didn’t have that bed, but the drivetrain appears to be original.
The 9-foot bed appears to come from a smaller first-gen F-Series like an F-3, but it’s been enlarged with stretched flares to fit the F-7’s dually rears.
Even the running boards look like they were widened. The finished truck looks like it could have come that way from the factory. It’s great to see the concept of a commercial pickup conversion done with such good execution.
Moving forward, the cab has stayed in its factory configuration but has been freshened up, from the listing:
The bench seat was reupholstered in gray vinyl and additional refurbishment work performed under current ownership included installing a headliner, door panels, firewall insulation, underdash wiring, floor mats, a driver-side window regulator, and door handles. The windshield wiper motor was rebuilt along with the heater core which reportedly features a 12-volt blower motor.
Under the hood is a 4.5-liter Lincoln Y-block V8 that’s making 125 horses and pushing them through a five-speed manual transmission and a two-speed rear axle.
This truck is going to be a slow and leisurely drive, but that’s fine because you’ll be smiling with every mile.
You may not want to go that fast, anyway. Since this is a commercial truck, it has a 19,000-pound Gross Vehicle Weight Rating.
The largely unloaded suspension will make for a rough ride, probably even on light bumps.
I’m surprised to see such a cool truck bidding at just $15,500 with two days to go. I’ve featured vintage trucks for more money on Dopest Cars. But no matter what the buyer ultimately pays, I’m going to call this one a good deal.