Owner-operator’s pot of gold

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Updated Jan 21, 2015

It’s not a Peterbilt or a KW in this case or even an actual pot of gold — it’s a 1991 Freightliner FLD conventional with a flattop sleeper that owner-operator Ron Stroke Sr. of Jefferson, Ohio, had newly painted back last summer. Shortly after the Sterling Gray paint — chosen in part to match his wife’s car — was laid on by Rocky’s Body Shop in his area the owner-operator got his decals on it at home where he parks and pulled it out for a picture. Lo and behold:

Ron Stroke Sr FLD

“I told my wife, ‘I’ve get to send that to somebody’,” Stroke says. Finally, just yesterday, he added the truck to our Reader Rigs gallery with this note: “Just came out of the body shop and the rainbow appeared. This must be my pot of gold!”

Stroke “built the truck originally as a glider kit in 1991” for an owner-operator in his area, who’s since retired. In 2004, Stroke bought it bakc and “have been running it ever since.”

In 2012, he replaced the Cummins motor with a 1993-vintage Caterpillar 3406B, run through a 13-speed transmission. He’s leased to Kuhnle Brothers in Newbury, Ohio, pulling a chemical tanker 90,000-100,000 miles a year in the Eastern states. “It’s still a good old truck,” he says. “I just try to keep it looking good.”

I’d say he’s succeeded.