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Day Radebaugh's 1949 Diamond T pickup truck proves that a vintage working truck could be stylish as well as functional. Only about 7,000 of this model were built from 1938-'49.
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Mike Berry / The Wichita Eagle
Day Radebaugh found his 1949 Diamon T pickup fully restored in Amarillo, Texas, about 10 years ago.
Radebaugh's 1949 Diamond T Model 201 still cuts a stylish figure, 64 years after it rolled off the assembly line.
Radebaugh's buddies, Carl Barrier, left, and Merrill Green, right, help keep his Model 201 Diamond T in tip-top shape.
Diamond T didn't build its own power trains, choosing instead to install a Hercules 236 cubic inch flathead 6-cylinder power plant mated to a Warner T9 4-speed transmission in this truck.
The Diamond T hood emblem sets of the nose of the pickup, with the classic "T" within a diamond shape in not one, but three places.
The bench seat consists of a 2-piece lower section and solid back, all covered in period-correct leatherette.
The dark green beltline is highlighted with fine white pinstriping, as is the rear of the bright red cab.
Outfitted with the correct vintage 1949 license plate and a set of aftermarket turn signals, the Diamond T is ready for the road. Some Model 201's came equipped with dual rear wheels tucked up inside widened rear fenders.
The lower edged of the passenger side of the cab includes a special lockable storage compartment for tools or whatever.
The big full-wheel chrome hubcaps set the Diamond T pickup apart from less stylish haulers of the period.
While the bulk of the interior is finished in a nice, neutral gray, the lower door panels were treated to beautiful aqua-colored trim pieces.
All necessary controls and gauges are neatly fitted into the gently curved dashboard. The 70 mph speedometer might have been a little optimistic.
Conservatively rated as a 1-ton carrier, the '49 Diamond T pickup was a heavy hauler. Absent power steering, it required a big steering wheel to persuade it to change directions.
Radebaugh believes the all-metal cargo bed was largely reconstructed to original factory specifications in the process of combining two trucks into one fully functional pickup.
A single side-mounted spare is mounted between the cab and the right rear fender. Tires are hefty 6.50x16 8-ply rated items.
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