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‘79 Chevy truck restoration

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New User

Dec 24, 2018, 10:36 PM

Post #1 of 6 (2652 views)
  post locked   ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

I am considering doing a restoration on an old truck of my grandfather’s. He has let it sit without driving for several years now. I have never done anything like this, but if I do it I would like it to be a dependable 24/7/365 truck. I have no experience in restoring old vehicles.

The truck is a 1979 Chevy stepside 4x4. 84k miles. All original motor, suspension, body and tranny. Body is pretty bad with rust so it will eventually need new body.

Realistically, what monetary invested should I expect from this type of project?

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Dec 25, 2018, 2:30 AM

Post #2 of 6 (2642 views)
  post locked   Re: ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

OK: You can do about anything with this "truck" if the will and bucks remains unknown because right now even you don't know. Get it up and check out rust scene FIRST this body like many was a horror show for rust but all parts cloned still if you choose to or another whole shell that's unrusted.

Engine, driveline parts still available even mega years older for trucks even the rubber (most difficult to find and fit) for doors and windows.

Decide with knowing what you are taking on both what part you might do or if farming it all out and want both GREAT looking and a trouble free truck even "cloned" parts the prices all done will shock you.

Do the math vs emotional value to you doesn't count in real valuation that can bounce up or down like the weather.

Start perhaps finding one just like it in what condition what asking prices are done if it matters for this project get some clue w.hat it will cost to get there plan on surprises.
Find someone who has done it for quicker sources for all the odds and ends this was only made with choices of some odd ball I-6 engines and small and large block Chev V8s.
All did have emission controls and cat converter (one) which is required to have in place and working as intended in many areas or you will NOT be able to use it on public roads believe it or not it's too new!
The vehicle should be known by it's frame for what model year you call it if totally custom is your choice forget this model year. If price is no object get some ideas probably SW USA locations that would do what I'll call a "Frame Up Restoration" = everything like it was new.

Sorry for lack of clarity in costs impossible till you decide what you want the end product to be with what type of parts used.
Most of the time consider it a wild loss of bucks because YOU really want it no matter what if not up to that it isn't for you even if you don't do most of the work you have to be an active participant,


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Dec 25, 2018, 6:23 AM

Post #3 of 6 (2635 views)
  post locked   Re: ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

I'm sorry but this is just a very bad idea. The rust alone is a death sentence.

Even if this thing had no rust, a complete "frame off" restore can cost $20K in parts alone. If you are not skilled in doing the work yourself and have to pay current labor rates, you could double that.


We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Dec 25, 2018, 7:49 AM

Post #4 of 6 (2628 views)
  post locked   Re: ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

There's another expense not mentioned. If you go for it you really need a proper place to garage it out of sun and weather or it wont last. Close rental or by situation build a place if you don't have a place already,


New User

Dec 25, 2018, 8:49 PM

Post #5 of 6 (2617 views)
  post locked   Re: ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

Ok. Well this gives me some things to consider. I appreciate the input from everyone. Thanks! Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas!


Jan 3, 2019, 11:52 PM

Post #6 of 6 (2581 views)
  post locked   Re: ‘79 Chevy truck restoration  

"you'll shoot your eye out kid "


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