1981 - Volume #5, Issue #2, Page #06[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Half-Size Tombilt Semi-Trucks
Probably not, because there are only two of them in existence. Tombilt is the brand name that Tom Dell has given to two half-scale model trucks he built for his 7-year-old son, Aaron Thomas, and his 9-yearold daughter, Stephanie.
The vehicles are true trucks in every way except for their size. The Tombilt cabover backs up and goes forward, and attains a top speed of 10 mph. The Tombilt standard "mini-truck" truck can travel 60 m.p.h.
Dell built the trucks as a sideline to his business of putting up steel farm buildings and storage bins. He figures he has about 3,500 man-hours and $60,000 invested in the two models.
"They are within 1% of being exact 1/2 scale models, says Dell. "We fabricated the bodies and all parts except rear ends, front axle, gauges, and accessories. The bodies are made of 14-gauge sheet steel and the frames are 11/4-in. by 2-in. rectangular tubing.
Both units are fully carpeted and equipped with AM-FM stereo 8-track radio and CB radio. The standard model even has a built-in sleeper. Both have polished stainless steel bumpers and grills.
The cabover model, which is driven by Dell's daughter, is powered by a 16 h.p. onecylinder, air cooled gasoline engine. It has hydrostatic transmission, disc brakes, and a belt-driven tag axle. It pulls a 24-ft. flatbed trailer, and the complete unit has a gross weight of 2,960 lbs.
The standard Tombilt has a 6-cylinder gas engine, automatic transmission, hydraulic and air brakes. When pulling the 24-ft. van trailer, the total unit weighs 4,870 lbs. "We've shown the vehicles at truck shows and driven them in parades," says Dell, "and they always draw huge crowds."
He notes that both units are available to lease for parades, conventions, shows and other events.
For more information, contact FARM SHOW Followup: O.B. Dell & Son, P.O. Box 51, Pittsfield, Ill. 62363 (ph 217 285-5555).
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