CC Outtake: Dodge M37 Military Truck – Now In Service To A Higher Calling

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I shot this ex-military M37 truck a few years back and posted it at the old site. I was ignorant of the symbol on its door. No more.

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Built from 1951 to 1968, the M37 was a development of the legendary WWII Dodge WC Series trucks, known more commonly in their post-war civilian guise as the Power Wagon. In reality, the M37 was nothing more than the Power Wagon in a new uniform.  But underneath, it was the same old components, many of which dated back to the 1930s. That goes for the 230 cubic inch flathead six, which became increasingly outdated during the latter years of the M37’s deployment.

The problem was that it was geared very low, and average military speeds kept increasing, leading to increased connecting rod failures. The venerable Chrysler six was not happy running at such high rpm for sustained periods, and engine failures became rather common. This may shatter the impression some of you may have about this engine. But its 4 5/8″ stroke was just not well suited to the modern world of high speed trucking.

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The cab is highly utilitarian, as might be expected.

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And the symbol on the door? It’s the logo of the Church of the SubGenius. It’s a parody religion, founded in the late 70s. Cartoonist R.Crumb helped to popularize the Church. The church espouses conspiracy theories, and members strive to attain the quality of “Slack”.


The symbol on the truck was adopted in around 2002, is called the “Sacred Ikon”, and consists of three bars and a pipe, arranged to match the eyes, nose and mouth of J.R.”Bob”Dobbs, the figurehead of the Church, who according to Church dogma saw a vision of God in a tv set he built himself in 1953.   Wikipedia has all the additional details if you’re still interested.