Re: Considering a Scout
DISCLAIMER: These are my opinions only - take them for what they're worth. I'll focus on the Scout IIs
since I'm more familiar with them - others will know more about the earlier Scouts (80/800) if you're more
interested in them.
> I have a few questions about these guys...
> ...are the relatively dependable? (use will be to pull a trailer of lumber, landscaping materials, etc).
> ...engines durable?
Scout IIs came with IH 196 I-4, AMC 258 I-6, and IH 304 and 345 V8s. IH engines are very
durable (and very heavy) - they were designed and built to go into much bigger trucks, and
to last for many 100k's of miles. They won't have the top end power that a SBC or Ford has,
but they have more torque at low RPMs, where you can really use it. I've never owned a
Scout with a 258, but they have a good reputation for reliability, and a friend who owns a
Scout with one is very happy with it.
The drivetrains are very heavy duty. Dana 44s with drum brakes in the rear on all Scout IIs,
dana 44 front with disc brakes from '75-'80 (dana 30 w/ drums from '71-'74). 4-speed manual
transmission was the T18 (close ratio - 4:1 first gear, non-syncro 1st and rev) from '71 to '75,
and T19 after that in two versions: wide ratio (6.3:1 granny first gear) and close ratio (4:1 first gear),
both full syncro. There was also a 3 speed manual (T98?). In the earlier years, there was a Borg Warner
automatic, and in later years there was a 727 Torqueflite 3 speed auto. Most Scout IIs came with a
dana 20 geardrive two speed transfer case, but in 1980 they switched to the dana 300 (very desireable
for it's lower low range). There was also an optional single speed chain-drive transfer case, but I've never
seen one, so I assume they're fairly rare.
> Hell...not sure what else to look for. Have seen a few w/o any cancer.
Rust is a big problem in Scouts. If you don't immediately see rust, you still need to keep
checking to make sure there isn't rust in less visible areas. Crawl underneath and check
the floors under the driver and passengers' feet along the rockers. Also check the
rectangular sheetmetal box at the body mount in the same area. The rockers are another
area that tends to rust. A few other problem areas are at the top of and just forward of the
rear wheel wells, and just behind the front wheel wells.
> Any advice would be appreciated.
I love my IHs. I've been using them as my daily drivers for 4 years now, and they've been more reliable than the fairly
new vehicles I was driving before that. I've found them to be easy to work on and inexpensive to maintain - a few parts
are rare and expensive, but they're the exception.
Hope this helps.