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DIY - but not speakers

So I have been focusing a lot on this project for the last few months:

A little background on this fine-ass 72... Yes, to the eagle eyed out there - it has a 70 grill. In 1993, my uncle Danny bought this as a ratted out project from my dad, who in turn had received it as partial restoration on a mid-70's diesel Mercedes. He drove it as-is for about a year before turning it over to my dad for a little freshening up. 

Well, I spent a lot of hours helping with the body work, pulling the 4-bolt main 350 out to have it gone through (still stock but .030 over and all new). I loved it then - even sold him the tires (that are still on there by the way) off of my deceased 79 Chevy. 

I drove it a few times over the years and always teased him that he should sell it to me. 

Last year, he was diagnosed with colon cancer and given a fairly grim prognosis - but a surgery and some chemo knocked it out and he was cancer free until November. The cancer came back, and he has elected to do minimal treatments as he already has a semi-colon and, as he said, "I am 70 years old". 

He gifted me this truck - I had no idea what to say. He knew I spent a lot of time doing the work on it to get the body restored and he knew I loved the truck and he knows I will do right by it. 

It originally came equipped with a three-on-the-tree and the clutch pedal had about 2ft of travel. Pain in the ass to operate it, to be honest. Soooo... first thing I did was hire the same guy who rebuilt the engine all those years ago (and that has all of 10K on it in the meantime) to rebuild a TH-350 and convert it to automatic. 

Up next is a top end refresh - HEI ignition, Edelbrock Performer intake and carb, going to go to a single wire alternator. 

I plan on lowering it, a basic 1/3 drop using shortened springs. Nothing drastic, just to get it a little easier to get in and out of. That will happen after I have my mechanic rebuild the front end. I would love to be doing all of this work myself, but I simply do not have time right now - my job is bogarting all of the hours in my week. 

After the front end rebuild and lowering, it is getting a set of these sexy bitches:

..and some appropriate shoes, too. 

This should all be done by spring, and I am going to enjoy letting my uncle drive his baby around when he wants to. He has a bum knee in addition to his cancer, and he was no longer able to operate the clutch and climbing in and out was proving to be difficult as well. Hence the automatic conversion and the lowering. 

This truck has been "in the family" since 1990 - and I cannot express how honored and humbled I am to have had it gifted to me. 

I have a signature.


  • Beautiful work and sentiment JR. 
  • Are those Torque Thrust D's ?
  • I rsuggest you do the matching Performer camshaft when you do that intake.  The cam will really wake up that engine and the Performer grind is incredibly street friendly, perfect for a daily driver to weekend cruiser, i.e. not a lumpy race cam.
  • It has a cam with a very similar grind from the overhaul.

    The wheel are Torq Thrust II, beautiful ain't they? Gonna look right at home on this wagon.
    I have a signature.
  • Perfect wheels.  B)
    ............. could you hum a few bars.
  • Bitching truck JR! You gotta love the old trucks they are pretty rare.
  • Truly a beauty there JR
  • Had a '70 Chevy CST 10 on the farm back in the day, sorta like this one. So your project sounds pretty awesome all around to me.

  • edited February 2017
    My dad is the handsome dude standing over the tailgate in the second from the top picture. He taught me about horsepower and paint and pushups and fighting and perhaps most importantly - how to love music over a good system. 

    Someday I will scan all the pictures of the vehicles he and I restored over the years... they range from a 63 MG to a 69 El Camino 396SS to a 76 Roadrunner to a 85 S-10 Blazer... 

    We did a Dodge Coronet convertible together, and before turning it over to his customer we took it to a local dragstrip and grenaded the 440 after grabbing 2nd gear lol. He lost money on that project! 

    His pride and joy was a 1949 Ford Club Coupe with a Nova subframe. We took that old thing across the country many times, carrying a homemade trailer. He installed white leather seating out of some Cadillac. Five of us in that car. It was amazing.

    We dragged the MG (above) home literally in buckets - there was not a single fastener tightened. It was 100% disassembled. 63 model, aluminum hood, true knockoff wheels. I spent a lot of time wet sanding and hand rubbing the lacquer finish my old man poured on!

    He has made noises about me assuming the title on this one, too  

    Anyways - speakers ain't all there is in the world. There is also those bonds between father and son and uncle and nephew. 
    I have a signature.
  • That black MG is a beauty. Do you have other shots from other angles?
  • I can sure look around for some, Ani. 
    I have a signature.
  • I'd love to have that little MG!  But I'd probably molest it by installing a 302 under the hood B)
  • We had discussed many times the feasibility of something like a supercharged 3.8 Buick transplant. 
    I have a signature.
  • That would fit better and be lighter.
  • Those are great engines and respond well to mods.  In 2001, I had a 99 Regal that was running 13.5 with just a pulley and a few other bolt ons.  Nowadays, an intake manifold swap, front mount intercooler and replacing the supercharger with a turbo will get you into the 10's. 
  • Awesome project JR! Man trucks had character back then - now they all just look the same. I had a client that bought a 1964 GMC 4x4 up from the states - man I loved that truck.
  • What I drove in high school.1968 half ton . Rebuilt 327 out of a Caprice ,my truck already had the th400 so the th400 out of the Caprice went into Charlie's kids 50 Studebaker pickup. First time I had a beer with the my dad , but not the first time I had a beer. I paid for the the shell bussing tables and washing dishes at bonanza restaurant in town ... It's no more. Had a lot of fun in that truck
  • Unless it is a true restore, we can always put in modern more powerful and efficient engines. What about the drive train, transmission? Does these also need to be upgraded. Suspension is pretty standard to upgrade as per the truck utility - lower or raise. Next safety features - seatbelts with pre tensioners and airbags, can these be reto-fitted? Expedition trucks have eltronics all over, so that is fine. I would like to have a vintage truck or broncho overland expedition fitted..... But the cost and effort means it is a few years away!!!
  • I am DIYing a new kitchen for waify.
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