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Old 04-28-2017, 10:48 PM   #1
Wwes
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83 K10 Survivor Project

Just picked up this 83 K10 to perform a full restore on it. Always wanted one of these trucks. Paid $500 for it.

The body is in great shape, only minimal cab corner rust. Some dents to handle. Needs a full repaint.





The interior is pretty rough, but it's all there.



The engine is the 305 with a TH350 transmission. Runs good thus far.



This one seems to have all the options as well



And finally, here's my other two GM trucks. Sold my 97 a few years ago and miss it daily.



Goals: Fresh paint, fresh interior, probably drop a built 350 with TBI (pref. factory style). Considered LS swap but want to keep it pretty close to period.

Will my spare set of tires from my new truck fit on this one?

Hope you all follow along as I dig into this and turn it into a stock show truck.
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Old 04-29-2017, 02:47 PM   #2
dragonball98312
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Unless someone swapped transmissions your options list says its a 4 speed, most likely a 700r4 not th350 which were only 3 speeds
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Old 05-01-2017, 11:51 AM   #3
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Great, it must be the 700R4 just going off what I was told but it hasn't been changed yet.

Still trying to figure out what part to tackle first. Any suggestions?
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Old 05-02-2017, 10:36 AM   #4
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

I have a 1985 K10, and the aftermarket wheels off my 2007 Silverado fit just fine.
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Old 05-02-2017, 04:59 PM   #5
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Thanks, I'm going to get them on there soon. I have so much to so with it I'm overwhelmed! but very pleased its original.
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Old 05-02-2017, 10:52 PM   #6
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Have to crawl under and look at the shape of the trans pan or post a picture of the pan and someone can tell you what it is. Every old 80s Chevy except one someone swapped out the 700r4 for a th350.


Great find and great price I would have bought that truck with no windows bald tires and no drivetrain for 500 bucks
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:19 PM   #7
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

I was going to swap the engine with a 350. Tonight the wife asked me to start it up for her, it has been sitting since last Thursday. Two cranks and fired right up. Think ill clean her up and keep the engine for now.
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Old 05-05-2017, 06:33 PM   #8
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Decided on how to handle this project -
1. Suspension/Brakes/Exhaust
2. Body Work
3. Interior work

No engine/transmission in there, as I've decided to leave as-is for now. Just minor maintenance, starting with valve cover gaskets, A/C rebuild, and hoses/belts.

Today I checked that engine runs on both gas tanks. Seemed to work fine, a little extended cranking when switching but that's what I expected.

Here's the transmission. Looks like it had a major oil leak from the valve covers or rear intake gasket. Going to start tearing it apart next week and replacing them.


Any ideas on why the fuel gauge is on full? Suspect it might be a ground issue but not sure. Also, the volts gauge doesn't show any activity either, so need to figure that one out. Good oil pressure though.

Eventually I want to put these wheels/tires on it off my 2011 until I can have the original wheels powdercoated. The lugs aren't long enough, but they do fit. Will get new lugs pressed in.

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Old 05-05-2017, 11:25 PM   #9
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Looks like a th350. The pan is a square with a corner cut off of it. 700r4 is pretty much a square.

Usually on these old trucks when the gas gauge goes way past full it's a bad/broken ground at the tank.

Not sure if you can get at the ground with the tank up on a pick up, never had to mess with mine on the k30, on many k5s though
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Old 05-06-2017, 10:17 AM   #10
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Will check on the ground - thanks

And that makes sense about the transmission. I found the torque-converter lock up pigtail hanging down by the drivers' side exhaust manifold - and no where to hook it up.
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Old 05-09-2017, 04:12 PM   #11
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Still here, still working on it. I've determined the valve cover gaskets and the rear of the intake gasket are leaking, so the top half of the engine is tore off.

Local shop said radiator and alternator are both junk - not surprised.

And now, I've gotten this far in the teardown I am considering a crate 350 from GMPP. A local transmission shop quoted me $2000 for a late 700R4 installed, fully rebuilt.

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Old 05-10-2017, 10:52 AM   #12
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

$2000??? I paid $600 for a th350 to be rebuilt and put it in myself. I understand thats a different transmission but that seems kinda high.
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Old 05-10-2017, 12:40 PM   #13
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jstock85 View Post
$2000??? I paid $600 for a th350 to be rebuilt and put it in myself. I understand thats a different transmission but that seems kinda high.
After I did some research I found it to be double what I expected to spend on it. Not going to happen.

Glad to see someone following this build - thought I was wasting my time.
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Old 05-10-2017, 12:43 PM   #14
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wwes View Post
Glad to see someone following this build - thought I was wasting my time.
I'm still here too.

I like those wheels. They fit without adapters? I was thinking the newer truck would be metric.
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Old 05-12-2017, 08:54 PM   #15
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Great, glad you guys are following. The new wheels fit fine but the studs weren't deep enough to get a good bite on the lugs.

I found a good deal on a takeout 350 TBI setup. Or I can get a 350 Vortec for the same price, and put a TBI on it (and order the TBI Vortec intake for $450). Assuming price doesn't matter - which would you do?
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Old 05-14-2017, 09:01 PM   #16
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

The vortec is a roller lifter motor. That's what I would do...
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Old 05-23-2017, 09:51 PM   #17
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Still haven't got the engine deal worked out yet - so I put new valve cover gaskets on the 305, had to replace some vacuum lines, and got it fired back up. I removed the 4BBL and it was gummed all to hell, so I sprayed it out real well and now the choke seems to be sticking. It's running about the same though.

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Old 05-23-2017, 09:54 PM   #18
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Also got a new radiator put on, and the Alternator as well. The core support has some rust on the bottom so it will be replaced.

The choke light it on at the dash. What does this mean?
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Old 05-26-2017, 09:56 AM   #19
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Spent last week doing a few tasks - first, the brakes. Rear drum brakes were shot, one cylinder was blown out. I replaced everything inside both of them and repainted the drums.

Then I decided to restore the original wheels. Sandblasted them down and repainted the center in black and repainted the lip in metallic silver. It looks a lot better and will work for now. Finally, had them wrapped in BFG AT for the classic 80's look.



Now it's running rich and I'm exhausted trying to figure this carb thing out. Will spend the weekend looking for a new engine/transmission combo.
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Old 05-26-2017, 10:57 AM   #20
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Progress! Looks good.
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Old 05-26-2017, 06:31 PM   #21
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Nice Truck! does the choke light stay on when the engine running? Or does it go out.
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Old 05-26-2017, 10:10 PM   #22
Wwes
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

The choke light is always on. Thanks for following guys, makes it worthwhile.
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Old 05-26-2017, 11:45 PM   #23
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

if the choke light is on all the time than you have no power at the choke.the dash light should turn off as soon as you start the truck if the choke has power.
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Old 05-27-2017, 01:27 AM   #24
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Cool project. Another vote for the roller motor.
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Old 05-27-2017, 07:19 AM   #25
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Re: 83 K10 Survivor Project

Check to see if there is a spacer between the transmission and transfer case adapter. If so, then the driveshafts are already the correct length for a 700r4 or 4l60e. My vote is for a late model 5.3/4l60e swap. This would make the truck daily driver reliable. You can pick them up fairly cheap and it's not a terribly difficult swap. You could probably buy the engine and trans and do the swap for not too much more than they quoted you for the 700r4 swap (if you do most of the work). Would also improve the fuel mileage greatly. Just my $.02.

Cool build either way. That's always been one of my favorite color combinations. Keep it going!

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