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Tiny House Built on a 1954 Goddess Firetruck: Self-Sufficient Wooden House-Truck

What would you do with a self-sufficient wooden house-truck like the one featured here today?

Ivan Morison built a tiny house on the back of this decommissioned 1954 Goddess firetruck.

1970s House-Truck Movement

During the 1970’s Roger Beck was one of the first pioneers of the house truck movement on the west coast of America.

He used them as a home during travels throughout the United States, according to his interview on Ivan Morison’s article Tales of Space and Time, where he interviews Roger.

According to Ivan’s article, he held a workshop in Eugene, Oregon, in January of 2007.

Wooden House-truck from 1954 Army Firetruck

Photos Courtesy of Wig Worland

This house truck movement happened during the 70’s because of folks’ discontent with politics, war and the economy and today, the situation sound awfully familiar…

Wooden House-truck from 1954 Army Firetruck

Wooden House-truck from 1954 Army Firetruck

Wooden House-truck from 1954 Army Firetruck: Interior Kitchen Area

Wooden House-truck from 1954 Army Firetruck

These wonderful photos were taken by Wig Worland who’s work you can find here and here.

If you enjoyed this post, you’ll also like: Rob Scott’s House-Trucks and The Lovestruck in Essex and even more in our housetrucks section.

If you enjoyed this housetruck you’ll love our free daily tiny house newsletter with more!

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Alex is the founding editor of TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. Send in your story and tiny home photos so we can share and inspire others towards simplicity too. Thank you!

{ 37 comments… add one }

  • Susan December 3, 2011, 8:48 am

    Love that truck-home…TOO COOL!

    • Alex December 3, 2011, 9:26 am

      I know, isn’t it awesome? Thanks Susan!

  • John Mauldin December 3, 2011, 8:53 am

    I thought your readers might like to know that they can buy surplus trucks that are heavy duty like the one in this story at the following two sites. I bought a 6×6 for almost nothing that was army surplus with low hours and miles. A steal. Check it out! No cost to look or buy.

    • Alex December 3, 2011, 9:26 am

      Thanks, John, I’ll take a peak at that later..

  • Michele December 3, 2011, 9:55 am

    Terrific! Not only does it appeal based on my admiration for all things small, it embraces my wanderlust and is aesthetically pleasing as well. Well done!

    • Alex December 3, 2011, 11:49 am

      Thanks Michele glad that you liked it!

  • naser December 3, 2011, 10:03 am

    hi alex

    this is very nice truke home looks like asmul abartment

    thank you

  • Emily December 3, 2011, 12:11 pm

    Hi Alex, I have been following the tiny house “movement” since the 70’s. Glad that there are so many forums out there to peruse. I have built one tiny trailer 6×16 and several sheds one which is 9×16 and I call camp. My first love was inspired by the book Rolling Homes by Jane Lidz,1979. Beautiful pictures and descriptions of west coast mobile dwellings.

    • Alex December 3, 2011, 2:33 pm

      Thanks Emily, would love to see your tiny trailer and sheds. Rolling Homes book looks amazing, wish I could get my hands on a copy.

      • breid1903 November 15, 2013, 11:15 am

        tried google and amazon alone has 37 copies for sale.

        peaceup billy

        • Alex Pino November 15, 2013, 1:02 pm

          Thanks for checking Billy!

  • alan December 3, 2011, 2:17 pm

    roger beck wrote one of my favorite books “some turtles have nice shells” highly recommended…

    • Alex December 3, 2011, 2:34 pm

      Glad you mentioned that Alan I added a link to his book on Amazon below the post so anyone can go check it out. Thanks!

  • The Flying Tortoise December 3, 2011, 3:56 pm

    Thanks for posting this story and thankyou Wig for the photos. Another character build on wheels…

  • Paula December 3, 2011, 9:11 pm

    Reminds me of one of my very favorite books from my impressionable teen years in the early seventies which was Rolling Homes: Handmade Houses on Wheels, by Jane Lidz.

    I don’t know why these things capture me so completely, but they do. I’m a fairly handy woman and I’m beginning to wonder if I should build one of these. I can’t live in one- my husband and I have put way too much money into a very static 1400 sq ft house installing a new metal roof (rain harvesting), solar water heater and 4.5Kw solar PV system, but I’m trying to convince a very outdoorsy buddy of mine who’s recently been laid off and planning on moving to expensive California that something like this would be affordable and right up her alley (she just doesn’t know it yet).

    I can’t help wanting one for my own though…

    • Alex December 4, 2011, 11:43 am

      I feel you, Paula. I’m really happy in my 600 square foot apartment but I can’t help but want a tiny house on a trailer sometimes… I love where I live though! Thanks for stopping by, Paula! Glad you liked the house-truck. I think it’s awesome too. Hope your friend goes for it!

  • mtnme December 3, 2011, 10:02 pm

    It seems more spacious in the interior than it looks from the exterior.

    It says it’s self sufficient. Is there a bathroom somewhere in the scenario?

    • Alex December 4, 2011, 7:00 am

      Not sure about bathroom, I wondered myself but haven’t found out yet

  • Athena December 3, 2011, 11:49 pm

    Hmmm….methinks this is like a Dr. Who’s Tardis; larger inside than the outside…*heh*^^

    • Alex December 4, 2011, 7:00 am

      I had to look that up, hahaha

  • Mr. Sharkey December 9, 2011, 9:15 pm

    I think you have your wires crossed, Roger Beck did not build the housetruck pictured above, it was built by Ivan Morison, who interviewed Roger and posted such on his web site:


    It’s a bit confusing because there is no introduction to the interview.

    As far as I know (and I know Roger well), he’s never been to NZ (although we would both like to visit), and never built a firetruck housetruck, either here in Oregon, USA or in NZ.

    • Alex December 10, 2011, 6:37 am

      Thanks, Mr. Sharkey. Embarrassing but I’m glad you pointed it out, haha. I’ll fix up the article right now. Thanks again, very much!

    • Alex December 10, 2011, 6:42 am

      I’m enjoying site right now, too, by the way :)

    • Alex December 10, 2011, 6:42 am

      *your site

      • Rob Gray January 26, 2014, 6:49 pm

        Anyone know what’s happened to Sharkey and his site?

  • Tang January 16, 2012, 6:47 pm

    There is a Park Model RV Housing Trailer in Canada made out of shipping containers that can be a form of tiny home.


    • Alex January 17, 2012, 2:08 pm

      Awesome! Tang- thanks so much for sharing. I’ll see about featuring this on a blog post soon so more people can learn about it.

  • Nate November 8, 2012, 5:09 pm

    Here’s a piece by Eugene Daily News on housetrucker Roger Beck’s life on the road:


  • Carl in SC December 30, 2012, 6:32 pm

    I love Roger Beck’s home built on a Goddes firetruck. The size seems perfect and the interior is so well done. Love the books storage shelving. Would love to see more like this here in southeastern U.S.

  • cyndi ann January 30, 2014, 11:49 am

    I really admired the fire truck home and the artistic lay-out, also the stained glass window , and it seems so spacious too, nice job you guys, thanks for sharing,,, sometimes I feel that I want to call them ‘Tiny Homes’, because they are to many a ‘Real’ home, :)

  • Janie Matthews April 30, 2014, 10:54 pm

    Dear Alex,
    I am Janie, I’m 12 years old, and I have a big dream. Being homeschooled, my mother tells me to find our true passion, and we both fantasize and daydream about if we could have our own tiny houses. But i’ve dreamed about a tiny house before it became popular. Seeing tiny sheds made me extremely excited and curious, and that’s when I asked for a tiny house of my own. Of course, mom could not help me, since I was very young, and she didn’t have time, which is understandable. But now, at the age that it’s close to highschool, turning 13, becoming a young woman, this is my dream. Seeing Mom and Dad struggle with bills and such makes me feel like growing up will be terrible, but knowing there’s a way to grow up and have a peaceful adulthood, is one of the most best feelings in the world. A discovery so perfect, it can’t be real!
    So, what I’m asking, is about some guidance. I would love to know how to succeed building my own tiny home on wheels, so I can live the dream I’ve wanted since I was small.
    Thank you for your time,

    • Alex May 1, 2014, 10:09 am

      Hi Janie,
      Sounds like you have great parents and you seem very smart for your age. I know what it’s like seeing Mom and Dad struggle with money. It sucks. But it’s okay. And it doesn’t mean you have to live that way. And it doesn’t mean it will be that way forever. Lucky for you you’re young so you can start designing and building your dream right now. The first way to start is by reading, designing, exploring, and reaching out to even more people who can help you with your dream. Have you sketched your designs on graph paper yet? By what age would you like to have our tiny home completed by? What will it look and feel like inside and out? Start, right now, by defining all of the details you can imagine about your dream tiny home. Then it’s time to break the entire project down into steps so you can make it real.

  • Filiberto Arteaga May 19, 2014, 5:01 am

    Hi alex. my name is Filiberto Arteaga you inspired me to build my own. tiny office becouse i rent a shop for my work’s . and I don’t have office for my customer’s
    Im sorry if I don’t tell you more. becouse I don’t speak to mach inglish
    thank you

    • Alex May 19, 2014, 11:26 am

      Hi Filiberto. Thank you I appreciate you sharing that! Would love to see photos (pictures) of your tiny office building that you built. You can send it to me at alex (at) tinyhousetalk (dot) com.

  • Carla June 13, 2014, 12:22 am

    Very interesting firetruck tiny house!
    FYI : For someone rarin’-to-go there are two old firetrucks at Pacific Salvage, Route 29, American Canyon, CA now (between Napa and Vallejo).
    One is painted yellow and may be able to be restored and added onto.
    The other one is pretty rusty but may be usable for a tiny house frame or towed to a permanent site for some other heavy duty purpose.

  • Lisa E. August 13, 2014, 12:32 pm

    I love a good house-truck and this one is very well done. (Just wonder about a bathroom facility.) Love all the books, wood and stained glass. Interesting vehicle. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cab enclosed this way before. Is it stock or custom?

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