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.