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Old 02-09-2009, 01:25 AM   #1
Lugnut64052
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A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

I have a cousin who has a pretty decent plain-jane '68 C10, which he bought in about 1980. One of those ubiquitous light green ones, and was his daily driver for 20 years. It started out life as a 6 cylinder, 3 speed. About 15 years ago we happened onto a '69 $200 donor truck and turned it into a smallblock 4-speed over a Thanksgiving weekend. The engine was pretty well worn out, but he drove it that way anyway until it got to smoking so bad it looked like a mosquito fogger going down the road. Right about then we happened onto a 1990 $700 TBI donor truck. I got about half-way into swapping the TBI into it and got stalled. Bunch of life, etc, started happening, plus I had some installation issues I hadn't worked through yet. So my cousin's truck has been sitting in my garage for nearly 10 years. Last summer I was cleaning shop and sweeping around it as usual, and thought, "I gotta either get this thing done or haul it to the scrapper, one or the other."

So, I went in the house, fired up Google and started hunting for some information. Came upon this truck forum, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Sat up probably half the night reading. And reading. And reading some more. Got stoked about finishing up the '68. What I didn't count on was getting all fangled fired up about getting one for myself. My dad had one of those ubiquitous light green '69s when I was a kid. I had always liked them and finally got to thinking, "well, why the heck not." So I started surfing the local Craigslist.

About a month later I bought a '72 C20 Custom Camper for pretty cheap. It had been a very nice truck, but the previous owner . . . in fact probably several previous owners had run it down so far it was finally dumped. Lots of broken, rigged, missing, wrong and abused parts and systems throughout the whole truck. It started and drove . . . sort of. I did make it home with it . . . barely. Figured it'd be a lot of fun to fix it up and so far it has been.

Here it is the day I got it home. That green truck is my cousin's C10.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:40 AM   #2
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

My plan is to basically restore it back to a bone stock daily driver with a few upgrades here and there for better reliability, then have fun using it as a work truck/daily driver.

It had on it some cheapie headers which were leaking badly, some steel packs which the whole back half of were rotted off and missing, some chrome valve covers, the wrong air cleaner can, part of the choke linkage had been removed from the carburetor . . . well, you get the idea. First thing I did was pull the engine and start hunting up O.E. parts to put back on it. The engine is a 3970010 block and seems to run fine, so I'm going with it. I didn't bother to find or look up the front number to see where it came from, but it had a late '70's throttle cable bracket on it, with the throttle cable and the TV cable both zip-tied to it. Fairly fresh orange paint-- looks like a couple of years old rebuild.

I hunted up some rams horns and put some fresh studs in them, then started putting plug wires on it. Also found some stock valve covers, and screwed a new temperature sending unit into the head.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:47 AM   #3
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Two sets of '75 Corvette plug wires with the four longest ones sorted out of both sets. I did run the front pairs down behind the motor mounts, but I shouldn't have to change them very often.

An early mockup. Bolt holes in the manifold are still full of mud dauber nests.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:59 AM   #4
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Got the plug wire heat shields and rail clips from LMC.

The rail clips are just hanging there by some longer bolts in this pic. I found I had to cut some pieces of thick wall tubing and space them down a little to get them to sit properly. They didn't fit into the turned down edge of the pan rail quite right. I think I ended up cutting the bushings about a half-inch long, spacing them down by that amount, and then they worked fine.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:10 AM   #5
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Zip tied some 3/4" split loom on the wires where they lay behind the starter.

Put a heat shield on the solenoid too.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:18 AM   #6
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Then on up the back side.

I know this isn't how the stock wires were laid on there, but it ended up working out good and they're practically invisible with the engine in the truck.

I fabbed a couple of tabs and bolted them onto the holes in the end of the head and used some parts store wire looms to contain them.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:24 AM   #7
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Went out to my local Pick-n-Pull and got a complete serpentine drive off a '95 pickup for about 200 bucks, which included all the brackets, the compressor, water pump, steering pump, alternator and belt.

Tensioner was shot and so was the fan clutch so I replaced them.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:55 AM   #8
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Couldn't use the fan off the '95. It was about 19 inches across, and the shrouds on our trucks are for an 18 inch. Couldn't use the original fan either because the serpentine drive uses a reverse rotation water pump and fan.

Local NAPA store coughed up this fan. 18 inch reverse rotation. It was natural aluminum out of the box, so I rattle canned it black. Had to drill out the holes to accommodate the whopping 10mm bolts the clutch took.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:09 AM   #9
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

I did have to modify the bracketry some.

The steering pump bracket didn't fit down over the rams horn so I whacked off the back prong. I used a short piece of 3/8" I.D. tubing to space the remaining mounting fork away from the manifold so it sat in the right place (the circle in the third picture).
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:22 AM   #10
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Modified the brace on the back of the A/C bracket too. On the TBI engine there's a boss on the intake for the rod to bolt to. I was switching to an electric choke carburetor, so didn't need the old heat stove tube anymore. I used the small plate as a mount point for the brace. Welded up the holes, then welded a bolt into it from the back side. Extended the rod and it hooked up fine. Would probably have been about as easy to modify the brace to bolt to one of the intake bolt holes.

I got the thermostat housing off the '95 truck as well. Trains the upper radiator hose up and over the serpentine drive.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:30 AM   #11
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

The old radiator was trash, so I got a new one. This one fits a mid 70's truck. Since the '95 pump doesn't have a heater hose fitting in it, I got a radiator with a heater hose return in the right tank. So, I'm going: intake manifold to heater control valve, valve to core, then core back to the radiator.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:34 AM   #12
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Once I got it all back together, the fan didn't end up as far forward as I thought it would. Doesn't quite split the shroud like it should but it'll work. Blows lots of toasty warm air when it's running.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:41 AM   #13
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Made some battery cables.

This is 2 gauge, soldered to the terminals, then shrink wrapped. Put it in some split loom and snaked it around inside the right fender. That black loom makes it practically invisible as it crosses over to the starter.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:52 AM   #14
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Here's the SPID.

Was a nicely optioned truck.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:58 AM   #15
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

I kept hunting around at Pick-n-Pull until I finally ran across a bigger sway bar.

The factory bar is 1 1/16" The bigger one is a 1 1/4" incher off an '88 3/4 ton Suburban. Even though there's only 3/16" difference the big one looks a whole lot beefier.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:38 PM   #16
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Sweet
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:44 PM   #17
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

When I upgraded to the CS style alternator, I removed the power wire splice from the harness along with the voltage regulator. I put a second terminal block on the firewall and re-connected everything there.

Not quite done yet. Still has zip ties all over it.
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Old 02-09-2009, 01:00 PM   #18
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Wiring diagram doodles. I pre-wired provisions for a compressor relay, electric fan relay and a low side switch when I had the harness all unwrapped.

I'm keeping the R4 A/C compressor setup on the serpentine drive. Yeah, they aren't the best compressor ever built, but a new one lasts a good while. Re-manufactured ones are all junk in my experience, but I've had good luck with brand new ones. I considered just using the junkyard one I got with the serpentine drive for a while. It still had gas in it when I pulled the mainifold off. However, this fixer-up is turning out better than I thought, so I think I'll just wait and get a new one when I get the air going.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:52 PM   #19
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Even though it's a C20, someone at some point turned it into a 1/2-ton. I'm not sure whether they simply stuck some 5X5 stuff under it, or put the body on a 1/2-ton chassis. Either way, it's going to be a 3/4 ton again.

So, out with the old, in with the new.
The old was a 5X5 12 bolt. The new is a Dana 60, courtesy of Longhorn Man. He pulled it out of his Burb for his Burbarific project.
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Old 02-15-2009, 09:56 PM   #20
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Checked the carrier bearing when I got the old rear out. The rubber bushing was beat to a mealy pulp, so I hadda install a new one.
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Old 02-15-2009, 10:17 PM   #21
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

And then, ruh-roh.
Did some measuring between the 12-bolt and the Dana.
The Dana's yoke sticks 1 3/4" further forward than the 12-bolt, so I'm going to have to get the back half of the driveshaft shortened.

Meanwhile, when I got the electrical system up and going, the brake warning light was blaring at me. Proportioning valve was popped and the front chamber of the master cylinder was bone dry. When I got the rear end out I took a look at the brake lines in the back. The very back one was rusted out and leaking, so I bent up a new one.
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Old 02-15-2009, 10:58 PM   #22
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spray-Bomb View Post
Sweet
Thanks, Spray-Bomb!
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Old 02-16-2009, 12:59 AM   #23
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

wowsers, looks like you got somework done on her there, coming right along, whe will definelty pull or haul anything.
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Old 02-16-2009, 01:07 AM   #24
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

Thanks, nuke1. I've already done an enormous amount of work to it that I haven't shown. Didn't take good pictures all along like I should have. Still got a few to put up, and I'll keep better track as I go along from here.

Still looks like a piece of junk, but it's very fun to see it gradually come back to life from being so far gone. Very satisfying to take a seemingly worn out part or system, work it all through, and end up with something that's fully functional and gonna last for a good long time again.
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Old 02-27-2009, 04:05 AM   #25
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Re: A daily driver, fixer-upper thread

I hooked up the CS style alternator that came with the serpentine drive. As a jumping off point on how to do it I studied this thread by toddtheodd which explains how to get an SI style going.

You connect your original brown wire to the #1 terminal on the SI. When the #1 terminal sees power, it turns the unit on.

The #2 terminal senses system voltage so it knows how much power to put out. A lot of people make a short jumper and connect it right to the output stud as toddtheodd did, but while doing research I happened onto this article over at MAD Electrical. I now understand why the #2 wire originally goes clear over to the red wire junction, which is several feet away in the harness (red circle in the wiring diagram). Your system will perform better if you’re sensing voltage somewhere else other than the alternator power stud due to voltage drop through the system.

A better way to wire it up would be to cut and connect both pairs of wires at the old regulator plug, then plug your brown wire (now blue) into terminal #1, and your red wire (now white) into terminal #2 (see the old regulator plug on the modified diagram) thus preserving the built-in remote sensing feature.
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