Progression Of The Beater

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Franklin County, PA
Back in June I decided to pick up a small truck for hauling around stuff if need to be. Found my 99 S10 on a dealer lot in a town over. I over-payed ($3,000), but it had a complete service record, along with a rebuilt front end.

Day I brought it home:

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My friends Sonoma to keep it company

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So, typical of the late 90's, everybody was putting those goofy racing graphics down the side. I'll take care of that, or so I thought. Apparently over the years it etched into the paint.

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Ok, whatever, it's a beater. Well, after a while my OCD kicked in and I could handle it no more.

Starting the work.

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Almost there. Yes, I know there is some overspray. I got in a little bit of a hurry.

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Put together:

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So, being the most basic truck you can buy, it had the most awful bench seat ever. Found a set of buckets from a Blazer with a blown motor. Got the seats, console, and even the factory CD player unit for $80.

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This is where I'm at now. During the spring it will need some work under the hood. Valve cover gasket, TB cleaning, complete rebuild of the braking system, etc. All in all I have a bout $3700 into it.
 
Great work, and I like your style. I've had a few "beaters" in my past, and I just can't seem to let them be. I always find myself fixing them up, upgrading certain things on them, etc. Most fun, perhaps, was a '97 Dakota I had a few years ago. My hack paint job, though, didn't turn out near as good as yours. Great work!
 
Originally Posted By: Bluestream
Beaters are often the most loved vehicles in an owners fleet...


+1 I agree. It certainly gets the most attention and love.
 
GOOD JOB!
you really know your stuff!

most of us don't even wash our beaters once a year and you, you got it to HIGH-Gloss....

GOOD JOB!
 
Good job on the upgrades.

Personally I would have left the graphics on the sides.
It adds to the classic truck patina
 
Originally Posted By: Bluestream
Beaters are often the most loved vehicles in an owners fleet...


I 10000% agree. My '97 Tracer wagon commuter car is definitely one of the most favorite vehicles I've ever owned.

Nice work on your little S-10!
 
Thanks for the kind words guys! It's always a work in process. It's a little slow, but it does the job. Eventually I plan on a 4.8 and T56 swap.
 
Sweet truck! From PA and no major rust? Bonus! The 4.8 and T56 swap will make it a dream truck. Suspension upgrades would be cheap as well. Even with the 4.8, you'll still get over 20MPG even with 3.55 axle. Basically you will have a sharp looking truck that can outdo some sports cars. You might consider it a beater, but that's a vehicle you can be proud of.
 
Originally Posted By: Michael_P
Sweet truck! From PA and no major rust? Bonus! The 4.8 and T56 swap will make it a dream truck. Suspension upgrades would be cheap as well. Even with the 4.8, you'll still get over 20MPG even with 3.55 axle. Basically you will have a sharp looking truck that can outdo some sports cars. You might consider it a beater, but that's a vehicle you can be proud of.


There was a hole in the rocker that I patched, the leaf shackles could use replaced, and the flex pipe flange has developed a leak from rust. But compared to most around here, it ain't bad.
 
Originally Posted By: Donald
I would have done brakes before bucket seats.


I completely understand this statement, but it's more of preventive maintenance than anything. Have a slightly noisy wheel bearing and in these trucks they are in the rotor. Since I'm taking it all apart, might as well put new parts on it. The brakes currently are working and half about 1/2 pads left.
 
Originally Posted By: Delta
Back in June I decided to pick up a small truck for hauling around stuff if need to be. Found my 99 S10 on a dealer lot in a town over. I over-payed ($3,000), but it had a complete service record, along with a rebuilt front end.


It is awesome it came with complete service records. I am surprised so many people buy vehicles with zero maintenance records then find out a short time later what a neglected POS they bought.
 
If it leaks antifreeze it will need a head gasket. They like to leak at the back of the block. You will never see it though.

I had a 95 5speed extended cab with the 2.2. To be able to set the Cruze control on the road around here you had to be running over 65. I beat on it hard and the clutch showed it. The synchro in third started to go so I swapped in a tranny and nearly new clutch from a wrecked truck. The springs fell out of the old clutch disc.
 
Not a whole lot to update on the truck. Recharged the AC a couple weeks ago due to a leaky compressor, honestly the truck isn't worth a replacement yet. Brakes got checked as well, they weren't as bad as I thought. Double minimum inspection. Hauled 25 bags of mulch the other day, and didn't even squat that bad!

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Been rethinking the motor replacement. I think for ease of swap I'm probably going with a 4.3 and NV3500 out of another truck. Pricing a couple complete units with ECU is around $700 for a lower mileage engine. The current NV1500(?) is just slap worn out. Syncros are worn out and it's popping out of 5th. The V8 would be cool, but just too much to try and do in my small garage.
 
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