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Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

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Old 02-28-2012, 10:02 PM   #51
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Yeah, it blows out on the feet. I don't know what the problem was, but later on this evening when I drove it, it blew through the vents just fine. Maybe the blend door was stuck? The whole inside of the dash is filthy from my dad driving it on gravel roads.

The turn signals are working now too. It turned out to be a ground wire that I didn't reconnect after putting the bed back on. So, now it's fully functioning, except the cigarette lighter socket isn't wired in, and the horn doesn't work, which is just a matter of reinstalling the horn wire on the steering wheel.
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Old 02-29-2012, 01:11 AM   #52
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

So you're driving it home, right?
Old 02-29-2012, 01:13 AM   #53
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Its vacuum. Probably have a leak somewhere or a disconnected line.
Old 02-29-2012, 11:24 PM   #54
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I didn't get to drive it home this time. There are still some issues with the TBI sticking and flooding, which I'm sure is from the old gas that was in the tank. My sister and brother are planning on driving it regularly though, to figure out if there's anything else wrong with it. They'll take it on a few short trips and see if it's safe to drive the 700 miles to Denver, and then we'll figure out what to do to get it here.

Even though the turn signals work, they don't self-cancel, and I need to replace the ignition switch. Does anyone have a link to instructions for how to rebuild the steering column? Or would it be easier to just replace the column?
Old 03-01-2012, 03:17 AM   #55
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

not sure about replacing the switch but replacing the column is a cake walk...

one bolt on the steering shaft
3 or 4 bolts on the firewall
2 bolts on the dash
2 or 3 connectors for signals etc
reverse process for installation
Old 03-01-2012, 12:22 PM   #56
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I've rebuilt a column. don't have a how to though. Basically just took it apart. replaced what was needed and put it back together. kept all parts in order they came off so they would go back on the same way.

switch is fairly simple to replace.
Old 03-06-2012, 11:11 PM   #57
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I've watched a few videos online about rebuilding the column. It doesn't seem too difficult. I think I'll go ahead and try that. I still have all of the parts that are supposed to go in there. I'm just missing the snap ring that holds the lock plate on.

I have a new ignition switch, and I just ordered a new cab corner for the passenger side where it's rusted out. I just need to find someone in the Denver area or in northwestern North Dakota who can help me cut the old piece out and weld the new one in.

I can't believe how close I came to giving up on the whole project. I'm getting so close to having it here as a daily driver.
Old 03-07-2012, 01:05 AM   #58
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Quote: Originally Posted by stevbrei
I can't believe how close I came to giving up on the whole project. I'm getting so close to having it here as a daily driver.
told you so!
Old 03-10-2012, 07:59 PM   #59
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I just ordered new tires. I got a set of 215/65-R15 Kelly Explorers for just over $300. Even with no paint on the truck, it'll look much better when the aluminum wheels and new tires on it.
Old 03-21-2012, 11:30 PM   #60
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I'm planning on flying up there on April 13 to bring the truck back. I'll have the new tires mounted on the aluminum wheels beforehand so that it'll be on the new tires for the drive to Colorado.

I have a replacement panel for the rusted cab corner on the passenger side. When I have the truck here, I'll run to the used parts yards to see if there are any rust-free left side fenders, and a 91-93 core support/grille. I should be ready to paint sometime this summer. Does anyone know of anyone who has a place in the Denver area where I could paint it? I have a paint gun, and I can rent a compressor. I just don't have a place to do it.
Old 03-31-2012, 06:37 PM   #61
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Went to the parts yard. There are several 1st and 2nd gen S10's/Sonomas/Blazers/Jimmies there. I picked up a leather wrapped steering wheel from a '92 Blazer and a new radio. I'm going to attempt to put an auxiliary audio input on the radio.


They have a Bravada there with an intact grille. The bumpers are in okay shape. All of the side trim and fender flares are there. So if you're in Denver, run to UPull&Pay on the north end of town and get them while this one's still there.


I also got a full instrument panel with a tach on eBay. I don't want to take the truck into the mountains without a temperature gauge, but I don't want aftermarket gauges. I figure wiring in the tach and installing sending units for the temp, battery, and oil pressure gauges can't be any more difficult than installing the same for aftermarket gauges. The odometer looks like it reads 191,000 miles, which is way more than are on my truck, but since the odometer wasn't working for a few years in the past, the original odometer isn't correct either.

Last edited by stevbrei; 03-31-2012 at 06:45 PM. Reason: corrected grammar
Old 04-01-2012, 09:42 PM   #62
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Found an old pic of the truck. This was from when my brother was trying to figure out why it wouldn't stay running. It still had the hub caps my dad put on it that are from my old Dodge Stratus.
Old 04-06-2012, 08:03 PM   #63
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Aluminum wheels are installed
Old 04-07-2012, 01:48 AM   #64
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

hmmm, I like it! I forget and I'm too lazy to read, are you planning on dropping it further down the road? I actually think those wheels would look sick with about a 3/4 drop, just a clean look. Get that thing all one colour though! I spent $60 to do my whole truck aha
Old 04-07-2012, 02:04 AM   #65
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Awesome project, makes me miss my 88 blazer
Old 04-07-2012, 10:21 AM   #66
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For now, I'm going to leave it at stock height. There are some roads leading to hiking trails where I'll need the extra ground clearance, but not necessarily 4wd. I definitely do need to get it all one color, but before I do that, I have to grind down each of those little rust spots and spray some etching primer on them...and probably some filler to level out the surface, so I think it's going to look worse before it looks better. I still haven't decided which route to go with the paint.
Old 04-12-2012, 04:19 PM   #67
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Just an idea, but I was stuck on what color to paint my truck when I redid the body. I ended up going with the original color that the truck came off the lot with. Maybe paint your truck the original color?
Old 04-12-2012, 07:29 PM   #68
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Quote: Originally Posted by 88bluesmurf
Just an idea, but I was stuck on what color to paint my truck when I redid the body. I ended up going with the original color that the truck came off the lot with. Maybe paint your truck the original color?
Yeah, I'm planning on keeping the blue, but I might change the shade of it. I'm also debating adding charcoal gray to the stripe between the body lines or the rocker panels.
Old 04-13-2012, 03:21 PM   #69
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I flew in last night. I got the steering wheel and ignition switch installed. The "new" radio didn't work. Such is life with junkyard electronics, though. I'll get pics soon.
Old 04-14-2012, 08:46 PM   #70
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bmxzach, you'll like this. It's one color now (aside from the bed, which I'm going to line later.) It took seven cans of satin black. It's going to suck to sand all of that off, but it's going to be a while before I can paint it for real, so this will work in the meantime.




Got the steering column put back together. I replaced the ignition lock and reinstalled the canceling cam so the turn signals cancel and the horn works. Took off the Olds 442 wheel and put on the '92 Blazer wheel for now.
Old 04-16-2012, 09:40 AM   #71
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Attempting to drive it back to Denver today.
Old 04-16-2012, 04:32 PM   #72
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Quote: Originally Posted by stevbrei
Attempting to drive it back to Denver today.
Good luck!
Old 04-17-2012, 12:06 AM   #73
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I took off for Denver this morning. Saw this sign on I-94 between Glendive and Miles City, Montana.


Then on to Wyoming.


Getting closer to the mountains.


And finally the Colorado state line. (Sorry, not the best pic.)


And finally to Denver.


The trip went pretty well altogether. Except there was a moment just north of Gillette, Wyoming where the truck slowed down to 60 on level ground, and wouldn't go any faster than that, even with my foot to the floor. It only lasted about two or three minutes before it went back to normal. It happened again just north of Cheyenne, but that time lasted about ten minutes. Going up hills, it slowed down to about 45, and I had to downshift to 4th to maintain my speed. It felt like it just wasn't getting enough fuel, but it has a new fuel pump. It was fine the rest of the way to Denver, but it's got me concerned. I won't be able to trust it on the highway until I get this figured out.
Old 04-17-2012, 12:16 AM   #74
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

fuel filter? glad to see you made it back safe man i cant wait to see what you do with this!
Old 04-17-2012, 12:37 AM   #75
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

that looks like a really fun drive. i'm glad the truck made it alright.
Old 04-17-2012, 02:05 AM   #76
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I was also thinking fuel filter, did it stutter at all or just bog down? Could be MAP possibly..
Old 04-17-2012, 03:00 AM   #77
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Hell yeah! Totally worth the wait now that it's back home
Old 04-17-2012, 09:12 AM   #78
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Quote: Originally Posted by bmxzach
I was also thinking fuel filter, did it stutter at all or just bog down? Could be MAP possibly..
It just bogged down. I have a new MAP and TPS. I'll put those in this week along with a new fuel filter and see if it ever does that again.

I'm also planning in going to the used parts yard to pick up a new left fender and possibly grille/core support.
Old 04-17-2012, 02:56 PM   #79
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Good to see you got it home. Keep up the progress.
Old 04-17-2012, 10:22 PM   #80
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

The steering is unbelievably sloppy. There's at least two inches of play in the steering, so one of the first things I'll be doing is working on fixing that. I'm going to just go ahead and try to replace the rag joint, pitman arm, idler arm, and centerlink. It's so bad that I doubt it's any one of those parts. It's probably more like a combination of them all. I'll be taking care of that stuff and the fuel filter before I do the grille swap and work on the interior.
Old 04-17-2012, 10:39 PM   #81
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Dont give up on it bud. I have my dads truck also and I have no intentions of ever selling it. He passed away from cancer in 03. Ive done so much to this truck I could have bought a new one but its all worth it in the end.
Here is my dads truck


He bought it in 95 with 68k miles. It now has 291k miles.
Just a few things Ive done:
New front suspension
new trans
new brakes
new a/c system
Lowered it
added factory fogs, power windows and mirrors
new wheels
tinted windows
new exhaust
Old 04-17-2012, 11:08 PM   #82
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Thanks, laydout97. Your truck looks great. Very tastefully done. I'm not going to give up on mine. Not after all it took to get it here. I just have a few more items to add to my list of repairs and/or improvements, which I was expecting. I'll just have a few more mechanical repairs to do before I start on the cosmetic changes. The parts are barely going to be over $100 for everything, so it's not a big deal. To be honest, I don't like driving it with the steering the way it is. So, once that's fixed, hopefully, I'll enjoy driving it as much as I enjoy looking at it, right?
Old 04-19-2012, 09:17 AM   #83
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

rag joint and/or worn out steering box are where you get the most slop, just put it on stands under he control arms and grab the wheel at 9 and 3 o clock, then wiggle it back and forth and check the tie-rod assembly for play. You may want to have someone do the wiggling so you can watch more closely, too.
Old 04-20-2012, 04:38 PM   #84
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Quote: Originally Posted by bmxzach
rag joint and/or worn out steering box are where you get the most slop, just put it on stands under he control arms and grab the wheel at 9 and 3 o clock, then wiggle it back and forth and check the tie-rod assembly for play. You may want to have someone do the wiggling so you can watch more closely, too.
The rag joint is where I'm going to start. I was just going to replace it with a stock-type replacement, but I'm looking into the Flaming River u-joint mod now instead.

And the more I drive it, the more I want to get rid of that gross vinyl floor and put some carpet in it. It's not a work truck anymore.
Old 04-20-2012, 10:26 PM   #85
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Well, I was going to go to the junkyard to try to find a fender for the truck to replace the one with a rust hole, but instead, it looks like I'll be replacing a window in my car.
Old 04-21-2012, 12:51 AM   #86
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

What happened?
Old 04-21-2012, 09:08 AM   #87
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I bet he'll be replacing the stereo too
Old 04-21-2012, 09:44 AM   #88
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It was parked at a light rail station while I was at work. I don't keep anything in my car, so there was nothing for them to steal. When I got to the car, the glove compartment was open and everything inside (just some paper towels for checking the oil, some receipts, and the owners manual) were thrown all over the car. I still have the factory stereo. I won't get an aftermarket one, because they're guaranteed to be stolen. This just proved it. I have nothing in my car, and it was still broken into.
Old 04-21-2012, 03:58 PM   #89
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Sometimes you better off leaving them unlocked. I never have anything in my vehicle worth stealing. My truck will have a stereo in it but i never park it on the street when not being used and never over night. I live in the hood and never have any troubles.
Old 04-21-2012, 04:23 PM   #90
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Quote: Originally Posted by s10driver91
Sometimes you better off leaving them unlocked. I never have anything in my vehicle worth stealing. My truck will have a stereo in it but i never park it on the street when not being used and never over night. I live in the hood and never have any troubles.
I was actually thinking about that last night. I leave the glove compartment unlocked for that very reason. I think I'm going to keep locking it though. None of my vehicles had ever been broken into until now. I think I'm going to keep parking at that same RTD station, because my car could still get broken into again at any of the others, too.

I went to the used parts yard this morning. I saw this bright orange S10 (not a factory color, of course. It used to be red.) I wish I'd have been able to see it before it ended up here, back when the paint was new.


Found an '02 Protege to snag the window from. It had power windows, so there was no way to lower it to access the screws holding the window to the regulator, so it took about 45 minutes to get it out. Still worth it to get the glass for $25 versus $250 at the glass shop.


Cleaned the glass up and installed it as soon as I got home. The interior's still full of glass. I'll bring it to the car wash to use their vacuum to get it all cleaned up.


So, now that the Mazda's fixed, back to concentrating on the truck project.
Old 04-22-2012, 03:39 PM   #91
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

The spring in the driver's side exterior door handle was broken, so it rattled like crazy going over bumps. Interestingly enough, that was the only thing that rattled on this truck. Now that I've replaced it with one from the junk yard, it has fewer rattles than my Mazda did when I bought it new in '03.


And I don't know what I did, but the interior lights work now.


I was thinking of putting bed liner on the exposed metal parts of the cab, but then at the junk yard, I saw several first gen regular cabs with the rear cab trim pieces intact. I'll probably grab those instead and then dye all of the interior plastic pieces to match. Come to think of it, I don't know why I didn't grab them when I was there yesterday.
Old 04-22-2012, 05:31 PM   #92
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Good question.
Old 04-23-2012, 01:40 AM   #93
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Sorry about the breakin on the mazda. I've had that happen to me before. it sucks. I've had a security system on every vehicle since...

But wooo, progress! :-D
Old 04-23-2012, 10:47 PM   #94
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

nice wheels i just got some for my truck what are you gonna do for center caps?
Old 04-23-2012, 11:41 PM   #95
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Quote: Originally Posted by 10below
nice wheels i just got some for my truck what are you gonna do for center caps?
Good question. No idea, whatsoever. I've spent hours searching eBay. I also walked all over the GM section of the used parts yard on Saturday, looking for any sort of center cap that looked like it might fit. Nothing. The only center caps that I have found that are specifically for these wheels were something like $20 to $30 each. I'm wondering if it might be possible to make a set using PVC pipe sections. But then again, I don't know what to use for clips, but it might be worth it to try.
Old 04-24-2012, 12:27 AM   #96
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

Iam glad u kept this truck goin man, had me worried u were gonna give up on it, i got my truck from my grandma in 09 who bought it new in 92, she passed away 6 months after and ever since then i knew i couldnt get rid of it, no matter what troubles ive had from it. Like laydout said, ive spent enough on mine to prety much buy a new one, but its all worth it in the end. Great going project.
Old 04-26-2012, 12:16 AM   #97
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I'm watching the show Wheeler Dealers on Velocity. It's a show where two dudes in the UK buy cars that are in about the same condition as my truck, then bring them close to new condition as inexpensively as they can, and try to sell them at a profit. Although their profits are rarely enough to make a living off of. But anyway, this show is one of the things that gave me the idea to take on this project when my brother gave up on it, and to make my plans as ambitious as they are. Edd China makes realistic restorations look so easy...well maybe not easy, but at least possible. If I had access to the shop and tools (and people to help) that he has, I'd be able to finish my entire project in three days...although sanding and painting would take at least another week.

I checked what I've spent so far, and I'm still somewhat within my budget goal of $3000 (not including getting the A/C working.)

So far:
Fuel pump: $70
TPS: $40 (not yet installed)
MAP sensor: $25 (not yet installed)
Radio: $60 (total for three radios I've bought...two didn't work, and I was too far away from the junk yard to return them)
Wheels: $160
Tires: less than $400
Flaming River rag joint modification: $80 (not yet installed)
Ignition lock: $16
Steering wheel: $18
Fender flares: $30 (not yet installed)
Instrument cluster w/tach: $30 (not yet installed)
Temp sensor for tach cluster: $10 (not yet installed)
Driver's side door handle: $10
Paint: $60
Right side cab corner: $25
HVAC blower motor: $30
Total spent so far: $1064

Budget for the rest of the project:
Left side fender: $50
91-93 core support: $40
91-93 grille: $20
carpet: $200
rear bumper: $50
windshield: $200
pitman arm, idler arm, centerlink, tie rod ends: $200
oil pressure sending unit: $15
paint/supplies: $600 (yes, I'm going to try to keep it that low. We'll see what happens.)
seat: $40
door panels: $30
rear interior cab trim panels: $40
full headliner: $30
materials to dye all interior panels black: $50

Total left to spend: $1565
Total including what I've spent: $2629


Once I'm finished with all of that, I'll decide whether it's worth it to put the money toward getting the A/C working again, which I'll plan for about $1200 for that, so altogether, the project would come in at $3829. But considering that I didn't pay anything for the truck, and it has pretty much finished depreciating, I consider it a better deal than the $13,000 I paid for the Mazda, which is now only worth $4000.

Last edited by stevbrei; 04-26-2012 at 12:20 AM. Reason: corrected details
Old 04-26-2012, 01:52 AM   #98
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

I like what you are doing. Its also not just about how much the truck is worth in resale, its about getting your money's worth out of it. If you can drive this thing for several years and put some miles on it, then you can get your money's worth.
Old 04-26-2012, 08:38 AM   #99
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Quote: Originally Posted by 98lowerednewproje
I like what you are doing. Its also not just about how much the truck is worth in resale, its about getting your money's worth out of it. If you can drive this thing for several years and put some miles on it, then you can get your money's worth.
Right. Resale really doesn't mean anything. I have no plans to ever sell it. If I ever have a need to get rid of it, I'll hand it off to someone else in my family. The main thing is that I'm glad that I'm still within my budget, and that the project can be done for that price.
Old 04-27-2012, 11:44 PM   #100
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Re: Project: Save Dad's Truck from the Scrap Heap

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