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Compilation of Cab Overs


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Topics Originally Created in October of 2009:


Here are some great cab over model wreckers. I hope the Tennessee Tow Boss enjoys these as well as everyone else.






























Danny Cassello - TRPC "EST 1963" - East Hartford, CT


HanksTow said:

Those California stick booms have got to be my favorite of all the classics you post Danny!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

Adam Dorr - Prell's Towing - Alpena,MI


Underdog said:

I can't get enough of those old Ford cabovers....what a great look. Thanks Danny.
Stay Safe, Rich.


Michael212 said:

Those Old Ford COE's & LN's all were great lookin' trucks Especially when they had a Wrecker on the back....



PHOENIX50 said:

Classic West Coast iron. I live about 5 minutes from United, and used to go look at their Don Heins trucks on my bike all the time when I was a kid.

Those big Continental crashtrucks are pretty amazing too, they remind me of CHiP's and photos in the old Highway Patrolman magazine. I was told Tex Freeman built those heavy boomtrucks with steel bought from the old scrapyards on Alameda. In L.A. back in the day, Continental was IT as far as big rig crashes. AWESOME!!
Phoenix Towing Company
1505 Bluff Rd.
Montebello, CA 90640


jimmypinktruck said:

Awesome pictures Danny! I love those classic paint jobs from "back in the day", as much as the trucks.


Vulcanuk said:

great pictures i really like the old pipe booms way ahead of there time.


RedPete said:

what is the history of United?


Rotator60 said:

That's a lot of History..I wonder whatever happened to all that Big Iron..


BlackTruck said:

Great pictures. You gotta love the W series Fords. I used to see a lot of trucks like that a long time ago when I ran the west coast. It does make you wonder where did they all go? Who did make the big stick units that were so common out west? Thanks for posting the pics.


Mellow and Sons said:

Danny thanks for posting the west coasters, would love to see any more you may have not posted yet

Dont remember much about United other than seeing a few of their trucks come by the shop years ago. Their trucks were always clean, polished, and standing tall.

Most of the stick booms posted were built by South Union Bodyworks in Bakersfield by Don Heins and his crew. The Contental trucks were built in house. I think I see more of them around than the Heins trucks. We had quite a few Heins trucks and I know of about 5 that are still running today. There were also a number of other places that built the round boom trucks. There was a company in Seattle that built them as well as many guys building a handfull here and there that were more or less copies of Continental or South Union designs.


lilmacsinc said:

Danny thanks for posting. There is just something about those cab-overs that is awesome. Don't know if its the rarity or what.


Ben said:

I love that malcolm kenworth wish there was a diecast of that truck.I have 2 malcolm mack diecasts and that would be a great addition.


PHOENIX50 said:

RedPete, If I recall correctly, Gene and Milt Moore started United Towing in Hawthorne or Torrance, California and moved to Downey CA in the 60's. I believe they still have the PD contract for Downey. Milt later split to run their body shop in South Gate CA.

Gene also owned United Truck Sales, a towing equipment dealer which used to be right across the street from United Towing, on Firestone and Ryerson in Downey. Around 1986-87 or so, I used to ride my bike to look at all the used tow trucks parked out front.

Phoenix Towing Company
1505 Bluff Rd.
Montebello, CA 90640


Da Wash Boss said:

Thank You Robert for that piece of history. Would love to see the Holmes 850 on the Pete.


ASAPautomotive said:

Those Ca sticks are nice but I like that COE Pete with that Bro Interstater in pic #14. It just looks TUFF!!!


tow2low said:

i remember most all of those trucks,seeing those pictures bring back the good old days.


united is still around,they have three locations now,they have a couple of sticks converted to hyd. with under lifts


Trucker Jeff said:

Danny you are the man. I don't have any real good pics of the Ben Warner trucks they were the ones I learned on thank you. The Pete c/o was the work horse of the fleet untill a 45 ton Challenger came in (and it was even red) . They told us not to cross the scale if we were empty as it had a large amount of weight on the front axle. It was powered by a silver v-12 detriot twin turbo'd and supercharged and would run like a raped ape loaded or empty. Lot of time pulling bumpers back in the day. I think starting around pic 13 are the brownies trucks the c/o had a bro u/l on it and at that time it was one of the 1st out there. Looking in the pic of the Ben Warners Dragon wagon (c/o pete) I see one of the Ford f-600's so I think that it was took around late 1986. Thanks for finding the old iron shots.


PHOENIX50 said:

Screenshots from 1973's epic "Cleopatra Jones". When Howard Sommers got the LAPD heavy duty contract for the San Fernando Valley, Continental built two cabover KW heavies for them, very similar to their own big stickbooms. The main difference was that they used a "tree" to support the first stage of the boom and pennant lines to support the boom extensions, whereas Continental's own trucks used only pennant lines. As far as I know, "Mighty Joe Young" and "King Kong" were the only wreckers Continental built for an outside customer.







Phoenix Towing Company
1505 Bluff Rd.
Montebello, CA 90640

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