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Old 03-06-2018, 09:07 AM   #1
HSRACER
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Brought back from the dead!

I am not sure if this really qualifies as a build project but it sure feels like one.

I have been a member for many years and have had the pleasure of reading so many peoples builds as well as learning a great deal of information on all years of trucks.

A few years ago I was living in the New Orleans area and met a bunch of great car guys. My friend “Pert” was working on a 41 Willy’s gasser and had a 91 chevy short bed that he drove every day to work. At 250k miles the fuel pump went out and he parked it in his driveway.

Every time I would visit him it hadn’t moved at all. Fast forward a couple years and it still was in the same place! I finally told him to sell it to me so I could get her going again! He said never as he was going to get around to it some day.

I moved back to Houston in 2011 and would ask about the truck annually. Still no progress and no desire to sell.

Out of the blue a year ago, Pert calls and asks if I still want the truck! Yes I said and when can I come get it? I ask if he ever fixed it and he said no.

So I hadn’t seen it in at least 5 years but I remembered it as a cool old truck with great patina. So we struck a deal and I made plans to rescue her.

After a 7 hour trip to his house I saw her for the first time in years. To put it mildly she had deteriorated badly. All the tires were flat, wasps nests every where, dash crumbling from the sun, headliner falling down, exhaust falling down and crumbling, among many other things I was not sure if I still wanted to mess with it!

But the overall body condition and that cool patina just kept calling out to me to be revived.

So we pushed it up on the trailer with a tractor and end loader and I was on my way home to Houston.

It took me awhile to get it off the trailer and into my garage as it wouldn’t even roll when I put tires with air in them. Rear brakes were locked up with rust. Kinda gives you an idea of what I was working with.


The truck has the bullet proof 4.3 v6 and a 5 speed trans. Roll up windows and the only creature comforts were a radio and air conditioning. Btw, neither worked nor did the heater!

I took pictures of the truck the day I bought her but the camera died a few days later and those were never recovered. I had a set of torque thrust two wheels and tires that fit on her so I put them on after loosening the rear brakes and got her of the trailer. Washed the 9 years of mold. Mildew and dirt off of her and pushed me it in the garage.

Here is a picture after the wash.

If you look closely, you can still see some of the mildew under the lower trim and on the rear bumper.
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:34 AM   #2
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

So the first order of business was to see I found I could fire up the engine. After 9 plus years of sitting with crappy gas in it there was no way I would try to keep the tank.

Remember the reason it sat so long in the first place was the fuel pump shot craps so that was going to need replaced as well.

So, I ordered a battery, plugs, fuel tank, fuel pump, fuel filter, new ignition switch (as the old one required that you hold your mouth just right to actually work) and some other miscellaneous stuff.

While waiting for those I found a set of 4 inch rear lowering springs for sale on Craigslist and bought those. Also, I had enough of the drooping head liner and in a fit of rage ripped the darn thing down. It also dropped microscopic bits to the backing piece each time you moved so your hair was constantly full of the stuff. Had to go!

So after blowing out all the fuel lines and installing the new parts along with fresh oil and filter it was time to see if the starter would even turn over.

Well it did and I decided to plug the coil back in after spinning it over to see if there was any oil pressure. Walked back to see if she would fire and BAM lit up, and purred like a kitten!

Original plan was to put in a radical LS engine if the stocker wouldn’t run. Guess I will have to wait awhile on that part of the project.


So I cut a coil out of the front springs and installed the drop leafs then took her out for a drive. I quickly noticed very poor brake action, so turned around and bled the brakes as well as installing new pads up front and new master cylinders and shoes in the rear.

Clutch chatters a bit when the engine is cold but it is original and only has 252K on it!!! That amazes me and it actually works well when all warmed up.

Here are a couple picture of her in the lowered state and roadworthy condition. I drive her each weekend.
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:59 AM   #3
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

I had no idea how hard it was going to be to find a stock replacement dash in the same color that wasn’t completely cracked and ruined. I must have driven a few thousand miles running all over Texas to look at disappointing junk dash’s that were listed as “nice” on Craigslist.

I finally saw a small ad on Craigslist for a 91 blue truck that was being parted out. I asked the guy what condition the dash was in and he said good. Can you please send pictures I ask. He says no he doesn’t do fancy internet stuff like that and I will just have to take his word for it.

He says he will pull it out and be sure it doesn’t break or crack and call me when it is ready. He lives 3 hours away so it will be another 6 hour round trip to go look!

I call him each week for the next two months and he tells me he hasn’t had time to get to it. I am ready to give up on him and then he calls and says it is out and in one piece.

I ask how much and he asks if I have anything to trade. I ask what is he looking for? Says he needs an edelborck carb for a project he is working on and I happen to have one off a running engine I pulled out of a truck I am scrapping.

We agree to trade even up and I take the plunge on the 6 hour trip. I get there and he is no where to be found. No texting or answering the phone. I decide to eat lunch and try one more time. He answers and apologies that his phone died. We meet and load the dash in the back of my truck bed. I strap it down and pray I don’t damage it on the return ride home.

I get it home and unloaded with no issues and have to work up the courage to attempt to install it.

After a month I decide it won’t install itself so today is the day!

Here are the pics.
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-08-2018, 03:07 PM   #4
HSRACER
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

I am very surprised by the lack of views and responses on this thread. I post quite a bit on the 67-72 and the 60-66 threads and get a ton of views and comments.

I guess the 88-98 threads are way different? Is this a lower volume part of the site?
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:40 PM   #5
arrg
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

It's pretty slow over here. Usually only a couple of project posts a day, so, I'm sure some people don't visit everyday. Nice work with your truck. I hope winter goes away soon so I can continue working on mine.
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Old 03-12-2018, 06:55 PM   #6
Joseog83
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Very clean truck!! Loving the look. Don't feel too bad, I posted a "build thread" in November and no reply's yet LOL
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:52 PM   #7
hutcholdschool
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Sweet build you have going on. It is strange how there are limited posts in this forum but yet there are so many of these trucks being built and customized you would think this forum would be busy. I believe the day is coming when the 88-98 get there time and become the next go to truck. I have found in general it seems forums have slowed down over the past years and people just post on social media there build threads which is a bummer if you do not participate in social media. Keep posting please, some of us appreciate any information and photos you will provide. Thanks and sorry for the rant.
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Old 03-13-2018, 12:05 PM   #8
mingoman
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

I just saw this lol!
Looks like a neat project and awesome you're willing to save another old chevy from the scrap yard. I was pretty fortunate to find a dash for my truck on the second yard we visited, but feel your pain in my search for the correct 8.1L brackets.
Looking forward to seeing what else you do as well.
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Old 03-21-2018, 07:15 AM   #9
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Thank you for the feed back and nice comments. I really love saving trucks of all generations. The 91 is my newest year model and that is about as far as I want to go.

For reference I have included a picture of my current group of trucks at the house.

They are as follows:
53 5 window
54 3 window
64 utility shortbed
69 shortbed farm truck
69 suburban turbo 5.3
91 shortbed

Thanks for looking at my post.
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Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-21-2018, 04:01 PM   #10
Terrick down Under
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

g'day, love the utility.
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Old 03-21-2018, 10:52 PM   #11
hutcholdschool
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

WOW that is quite the collection you have. Very nice.
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Old 03-23-2018, 05:56 PM   #12
mingoman
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Awesome collection!
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Old 03-23-2018, 10:22 PM   #13
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

I love this build. Dad bought a '92 4.3/5-speed brand new and I bought it from him in 2000 with around 180k miles. That was the most bulletproof truck we've ever had. We put an alternator, one engine mount (my fault) and a water pump on, that was it over 200k. The engine and trans combo wasn't winning any races but it regularly got 17-18mpg and could go 21-22 on long highway trips. Me and that transmission were one together, I only used the clutch in 1st gear most of the time. The bench seat in these trucks are some of the most comfortable made. They're just nice cruisers. And the color of yours...perfect. Looking forward to more updates! BTW if you ever choose to sell it please keep me in mind (serious). It would be perfect for my son.
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Old 03-24-2018, 11:25 PM   #14
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Nice truck! Can you please post wheel/ tire specs?
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Old 03-25-2018, 04:38 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Terrick down Under View Post
g'day, love the utility.
Thank you. Crazy thing gets a ton of attention. It is parked outside so people stop to try and buy it. They choke when they here how much is in it!

Ls, air bags and wheels cost a bunch.
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Old 03-25-2018, 04:39 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by hutcholdschool View Post
WOW that is quite the collection you have. Very nice.
Thank you.
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Old 03-27-2018, 06:59 PM   #17
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Very nice collection! :cheers:
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Old 03-28-2018, 11:03 PM   #18
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joseog83 View Post
Very nice collection! :cheers:
Thank you
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 03-28-2018, 11:05 PM   #19
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 02leenin View Post
Nice truck! Can you please post wheel/ tire specs?
Wheels are 17 inch. I had a very hard time finding the right size tires since most people donít run 17 anymore. Ended up finding the right ones at Walmart of all places.

I travel a bunch but will post the sizes when I get back home.
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 04-09-2018, 12:27 PM   #20
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

The 88-98 section definitely doesn't have the traffic. I've done 2 or 3 builds here.

You've done some great work so far! Now all it needs is a 4.8l in place of that 4.3l.

The utility bed is killer on that '64. I have a faux wrecker bed on my LS powered '49 GMC, it also draws attention anywhere I stop.
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Old 04-09-2018, 03:58 PM   #21
HSRACER
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Originally Posted by OutlawDrifter View Post
The 88-98 section definitely doesn't have the traffic. I've done 2 or 3 builds here.

You've done some great work so far! Now all it needs is a 4.8l in place of that 4.3l.

The utility bed is killer on that '64. I have a faux wrecker bed on my LS powered '49 GMC, it also draws attention anywhere I stop.
Thanks for the nice feedback. Sounds like you have some nice vehicles as well.
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Old 04-09-2018, 04:00 PM   #22
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Wheels are 17 inch. I had a very hard time finding the right size tires since most people donít run 17 anymore. Ended up finding the right ones at Walmart of all places.

I travel a bunch but will post the sizes when I get back home.
The front tires are 215/60/17 and the rear are 235/60/17
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Old 04-09-2018, 08:16 PM   #23
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

As has been said, seems to be a quiet neighborhood, but looks like you have a nice project!
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Old 04-19-2018, 03:33 PM   #24
HSRACER
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terrick down Under View Post
g'day, love the utility.
Thank you
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HSRACER
Slammed 53 5 window
Supercharged/Bagged 54 Pickup
1964 bagged utility patina short bed
Supercharged 67 Nova
Big Block 67 SS Chevelle
Bagged 69 Farm truck
Bagged 69 patina Suburban Turbo'ed 5.3 LS
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Old 04-21-2018, 06:44 PM   #25
HunterRotten
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Re: Brought back from the dead!

I really like that blue color. My dad had a 90 model W/T with the NV3500 5 speed and the 4.6. By the time I came around in the mid 90's that thing had a screaming tuneport small block in it. I loved that truck and I love this body style. Yours is pretty much the "newer" version of mine! Out of the factory I was blue with blue interior and an inline 6 with 3 speed manual trans.
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