Classic Iron: Hawley’s hauler

by John Curran

SMITHS FALLS, Ont. – Anyone who has ever hit the road in search of garage sales will understand exactly how it felt to come across Terry Hawley and his rare 1962 Mack B73, the Cockshutt Hauler.

Passing through the small Eastern Ontario community of Smiths Falls, which is far more famous for being home to a Hershey chocolate factory than classic iron, the rush was akin to finding an original Tom Thomson amid a sea of velvet Elvis’ and crying clowns.

Once a week, the area’s classic car owners shine up their babies and head to a parking lot on the western side of town along Hwy. 15 to participate in Cruise Night.

While it takes a lot more than four wheels to get most Truck News readers excited, there is regularly one gem on hand that’s worth a look.

Weighing in at 18,550lb, Hawley’s Mack – fire engine red with black and gold accents – literally towers above the mix of low riders and classic convertibles.

Ironically Hawley got his introduction to the trucking industry as a float driver with A.J. Goodale in Hamilton where he drove one of the company’s B61s in the late 1960s. It’s ironic because his B73 was doing similar work in La Belle province during the same period.

Based out of Merrickville, he says he is actually the unit’s third owner.

“It was registered in Quebec when purchased,” says the one-time trucker.

The truck has been an ongoing project for about three years now.

While he’s left the 18-speed Mack quadraplex – complete with its duo-gear shift system – alone, a new sleeper was installed to gain a little more room to rest.

“I’ve got a 34-inch bunk on it that came off an old General … It used to have a 24-inch sleeper,” he says. “This one is really the same style.”

After having a friend paint his historic show dog, which was originally blue, Hawley turned his attention to the front grille.

“At some point, somebody decided it would be a good idea to do the entire front with aluminum paint,” he says chuckling. “I spent 40 hours refinishing the front end and brought it back to its original condition.”

But this Mack is much more than a pretty face, it still gets in a little work when the weekend weather warms.

Hawley has a fleet of four fully-restored, antique farm tractors, which he transports to shows around the province at various events throughout the summer.

And what better way to get them to competition than behind a vintage float truck spec’d to handle the job?

Powered by its original Cummins 335, the B73 not only has the horses to handle the load, Hawley says its 44 rears and 4.7 axle ratio give it the power to do it with style.

“It’s geared higher than most trucks from those days,” he adds. “There were only 2,500 ever made this way, because it’s built to handle heavier loads.”

He plans to get in under the classic shutter-style hood to paint the engine over the coming months, and then may look to redo the inside of the cab.

Even though it’s still a work in progress, if you happen to roll through Smiths Falls on a Thursday night and see the field of yawning hoods and chrome, stop by and take a run down memory lane – you’ll be glad you did.

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