My Old truck..

Discussion in 'Shop Talk' started by Kygardengal, Aug 5, 2005.

  1. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    I am seeking honest advice here. I have an 82' Chevy S10 long bed. I have had it for 8 years and have had to do very little to it except normal maintenance. The body is in almost perfect condition, just a few scratches and minor little dents here and there. It runs so-so...It need a new muffler. Leaks oil like a seive so I just keep pouring it in there. It had 120,000 miles when the Odometer quit working 2 years ago. Original motor and transmission. Now the question.......Should I just keep it or get something new or newer. I thought I wanted something newer til I started shopping around and got "sticker shock" big time....A payment of $385. a month for 5 years on a used truck is not acceptable. Fact.......Ain't gonna happen....never...My DS had the idea that even if I borrowed the money to put like a new motor and transmission,new paint and maybe interior, then I would have a "like new" truck for a lot less. That makes more sense to me...As of now it is worth very little. It would need to be restored. I thought maybe by spending like $3,000. on it. Then it should last quite a while...I am not a "car or truck" lover. To me either it runs or it doesn't....I don't care for fancy just functional....If I did fix it, it would be for the purpose of keeping it a very very long time.....What do you think?
     
  2. Cosmic

    Cosmic Well-Known Member

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    All depends.

    If you can get a new or like new engine / transmission for decent money and then rebuild the old ones can have a truck that could last forever.

    Then you have the matter of all the other small stuff that goes wrong with old vehicles. Especially things like brake lines rust out, shocks, wheel bearings and front ends, tires, brake rotors and pads, complete rebuilt on rear brakes, gas tank, cables, electrical, radiators, gizmos, etc. Over a time period it can nickel - dime you to death, plus the grief of always having to be fixing something. Having a second identical truck as a parts truck is nice.

    Folks have done what you describe with older Datsuns, I did it with a couple of Omni's. Sort of works but there is always that part that kills you and seems to be impossible to get. Probably what will happen with my old Colt. And do you trust it for long trips or even out of the city limits???

    At some point a new truck is very nice. Sort of six of one, half a dozen of the other. At some point your luck always runs out with older trucks / cars.

    Might depend on how cheap you can put the old truck in first class working order. Or how cheap you can get a new truck.
     

  3. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    Obviously, I can't do the work myself..that is a down side, but DH has a friend
    that would do it and it won't cost as much as it could. I had not thought of the "other" stuff like brake lines and gas tank. I just hate to think that to have a decent something to drive that I have to "suck it up" and pay so much in a truck note. $385. a month is more than my first house note....
    I realize that was in the 70's but ya know, it is still hard to stomache. My
    problem with buying another truck (not brand new) is that I am so afraid to get stuck with something that will require major work. At least with mine, I know what it needs and what I have already done ( a water pump and a radiator). Right now, I just drive it around town and maybe the surrounding counties. I wouldn't trust it to go too far. It doesn't over heat or anything,
    just kind of scarry to get onto the interstate and go too far with it....Please
    keep the opinions coming. If I fix things as I go along, that seems better than
    a big note. We had a 1990 Olds that we got rid of last year with 385,000 miles.....Yes, that's right.....We fixed stuff on it and fixed stuff on it til one day, it needed a new motor and we decided that was it...Sold it for $100.
    Someone, put that new motor in it and I still see it running around town.
    Some kid, I used to work with offered me $1000. for my truck because he wanted to fix it up for show......(Fancy paint job with flames) big motor etc.
    I just want it to run good.
     
  4. fordy

    fordy Well-Known Member

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    ................FWIW....Sell your fixer upper for 1k , put the 3k you would have to spend to fix the engine and go BUY one of those Toyata Matrix(s) and then you've got a 300,000 mile vehicle if you perform regular maintenance .
    ...............In reality , your going to have to fix alot MORE than just the motor over time . Next it maybe the Transmission , then the front end , then the axle bearings ad infinitum ad nausaum . fordy.. :)
     
  5. gilberte

    gilberte Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We just went through the same thing with our 1993 Ford Taurus. Finaly decided to let her go and buy a newer one. Let's face it, yours is a 23 year old truck and they're not made to last forever. If you put a new engine in it, you've still got a 23 year old truck with 23 year old other parts on it waiting to be replaced. After you've replaced all of them, they'll be sitting on a 23 year old frame.

    I would suggest finding the best deal on a three or four year old vehicle you like, and paying cash for it if you can.
     
  6. Cosmic

    Cosmic Well-Known Member

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    Your basic problem is the truck has ruined you with "Cheap Transportation Blues".

    Depending on your state, one answer might be to find a second vehicle if the costs of ownership are not that high. Insurance, license, inspections, etc. In some states (like Ma.) the costs of ownership are out of sight if it just sits in your yard and is roadworthy Sort of have two bangers, hopefully one will always be running. Can use one to go get parts for the other. :clap:

    The fact that somebody is willing to give you $1000 is saying take the money and run. Maybe you don't need a truck. The econo-box cars can be had for well under $15K. I always buy a car or truck new for cash. That allows for a good savings on the insurance. Put in a kill switch and don't get the comprehensive insurance, probably just the minimum like you got now.

    Maybe Cheap Transport is all about luck and how much risk you want. A new car every 20 years is just about right. Your time has probably come. :goodjob:

    I hate buying used cars for good money. Requires a super good inspection, way to much fraud out there. Can't even fully trust new car dealers, they will try to pull a fast one too. Especially with something they leased out and was turned back in with low miles.

    Third option is nurse the truck for a while as you save up a nest egg for the new one. Got to think about how to get new wheels long before they go belly up. Push your luck and it is shank's mare as in :walk:-ing which focuses the attention like nothing else.
     
  7. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    I'm with Fordy on this one, sell and buy another.
    What engine/trans is in this truck? Most engines are extremely expensive to rebuild properly, especially the newer,smaller engines. The parts and machine work can easily run close to $1,000 without removal/installation and disassembly/assembly costs. You have a truck with the worlds second worst carb system no matter what engine you have, I would want to move up to throttle body fuel injection. If it is a V-6 it is a 2.8litre which isn't the best engine to have for durability. They are extremely prone to crankshaft problems after high mileage. They are also well known for their oilo leakage.
     
  8. Darren

    Darren Still an :censored:

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    I'd keep running it until the engine or transmission died. We have a 92 S10 with 225,000 miles and it's like the Energizer bunny. It keeps on going. It's had work done to most things except the engine and transmission. The body is in great shape so we have no intention of getting rid of it. Like yours we know what was done for repairs. I wouldn't hesitate to get in the truck and drive cross country. Even with the high mileage, the 4.3 V6 uses no oil between changes.

    Anytime you get an engine or transmission rebuilt you're rolling the dice. Sometimes the rebuild ends up with problems. Even buying a name brand rebuild is no guarantee you won't have problems. The one exception is if you ever need the transmission rebuilt, take the truck to a shop that belongs to ATRA. If they don't belong to ATRA, forget about them.

    Keeping the oil level up is a cheap price to pay for continuing to run the truck. If the only problem is some leaking seals, that's all the more reason to keep driving the truck as is. If oil is fouling your spark plugs that's a different story. I wouldn't rebuild an engine if the only problem was oil leaks.

    Like someone else suggested save your money for the future and keep running the truck until it really needs major work.
     
  9. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Here is how I beat the system on high priced trucks. Admittedly, I am cheap! I have more important things to spend my money on than transportation. I just need a dependable ride and in this weather one that has AC. I arrange to go to a salvage sale. Many vehicles are sold by insurance companies to recover what they can and to spend as little as possible to satify their customers. A plain Jane pickup that is wrecked brings very little money. A low mileage late model such truck that needs minimal repair is what you need to match your requirements. With one of these everything is in near new condition with the sheet metal just bruised. For a farm vehicle does it matter that the cab has body filler, an imported fender or bumper, some paint runs and a few only noticeable up close flaws? It does not bother me since I have only the dollar amount equal to 6 months of payment. As examples, I have a 1990, 24k mile International DT4900 that I have had since nearly new. The truck sold for more than $50K and I have about $10k in it. My F150, at 13k miles, was bought miles and fixed for $4200 total. It has had 61K miles trouble free miles added. My last car had 3k miles and was a damaged theft recovery, paid $3k for it and parts and drove it for 126k miles and then sold it for $2600. I occasionally will rebuild one of the salvage vehicles for family or friends. I never buy one that the safety of the vehicle is compromised. This info is not meant to be a boast but to emphasize what you can accomplish.
     
  10. kmaproperties

    kmaproperties Well-Known Member

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    standard thinking is it is cheaper to spend 1500 per year fixing than buying with a loan. and you won't spend 1500 every year.
     
  11. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    It depends on lot of things. But any vehicle can be restored to reliable condition if you go through it completely including steering and suspension. Also put a new radiator, belts. hoses, water pump, etc in it if you replace the engine. I swear people get too cheap sometimes and ruin a perfectly good rebuilt engine cause they try and run it with a plugged up radiator or reuse some other old part. And unless you live in rust belt, the brake/fuel line most likely wont cause problems. Though a master cylinder or wheel cylinder can go at any time. Dont forget clutch master/slave cylinders also. Usually electrical and fuel pump (if fuel injected) give most hassle. Manual trannies if kept full of whatever fluid is recommended last indefinitely if not abused. Automatics need rebuild at least whenever you rebuild/replace the engine.

    Its hard to recommend to other people cause I can tinker on my own junk and dont have to pay $$$ for labor. This makes a big difference. I also dont have to play peekaboo with emissions inspections in my area so can mix and match parts and not have to use factory spec parts for that particular year. Just eliminate the part altogether or find something that lets it run. I tend to just find cheap body in good condition and adapt a simple older engine thats reliable and easy to work on. Not even necessarily from the same manufacturer.

    One thing about vehicles, the newer and more complex the vehicle the more it costs to repair if yyou have to fix it to factory spec. That usually means when newer vehicles get old they are throw away rather than patch and keep. The eighties is nearing the end of line as far as keeping an old vehicle going by rebuilding.

    I'm trying to remember what engine an '82 S10 used. Think it either has an Isuzu 1.9L or Pontiac 2.5L or Chev 2.8L. One year in there they used an all cast iron Chev 2.0L like used in Cavalier of that vintage. I liked that particular engine as it lasted a long time (around 200,000 miles or more) compared to the others if taken care of, but its rare.
     
  12. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    Around here in central Idaho there are so many rigs for sale they have come way down in price, even the new dealers are hurting for buyers, let alone the used ones.... and private treaty sellers are also lowballing their rigs, it just depends on what yer in the market for.... and how far you would be willing to drive to a depressed area.... must be more than just here they are hurting to sell vehicles.

    those old s-10 frames are pretty good, a person can drop a 350 chevy into one, adnt "fly" down the road, and do so while pulling a trailer..... a friend did that to an old '83 a cople years ago.... and it kinda scared him at 120mph with that trailer [yeah he is kinda different]

    If it is a 4x4 then it would still be worth fixing up to someone, but if it has those other problems strting the 3K will likely double in a short order, depending on how reasonable mechanix are in your area too.

    William
     
  13. Janon

    Janon 993cc Geo Metro

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    The problem with restoring any vehicle (especially well used vehicles) is that to do it properly, it takes a great deal more time and money than you'd anticipate. Especially true if you're paying someone to do the restoration.

    8 year of use out of an 1982 S10, thats called VALUE! Perhaps its time for the ol' S10 to retire.

    Personally, I'd be looking for a lightly used, low mileage if possible, well maintained and fully depreciated vehicle. Around here, that means anything about 11 years or older. With a bit of patience and luck, you'll be amazed at what you can find.

    cheers,
     
  14. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    Thanks to all of you for your replies...I knew I could count on you guys to come forward with your opinions. I am still "on the fence" on this one...I know that my little ol' truck has served me well. I am not "into" restoring old
    vehicles. I just can't afford a big payment. Maybe my ol' truck will keep on running til I can afford a newer one. I would love a full size 4X4 anything....
    however, I guess I have to be a little more patient. By the way HermitJohn,
    that's a Chev 2.8L.......It's a good lil ol' truck to run around the farm, haul things with, etc. etc........Just wish it ran better. Thanks guys...
     
  15. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    As always Im contrary here.Best vehicle we had in a LONG time was a 91 or 92 i forget,S10 with the 2.8L and injection.it was a GREAT truck,very dependable.Never leaked a drip of oild either,but it burned it.Put in a can of Engine restore and it cured that!Fantastic bang for the buck.Only downside,it was really gutless,poor accelleration.Not a problem,just not a hi- power engine.Oh,and it flew through smog VERY clean tests.
    Honest truth here,I have no agenda to promote re: this.

    BooBoo
     
  16. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Go buy the cheapest,stripped new Toyota mini truck,less than 10 grand if you find a Lot queen in a really ugly color.BIL did that,also huge bang for the buck.Really ugly truck,great ride and A/C.Not much power,but thats what you get,a cheap truck that runs really well.

    BooBoo
     
  17. cfabe

    cfabe Well-Known Member

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    Is the only real problem with the truck right now the oil leak? Find out where it's coming from, it might not be that expensive to fix. Then keep driving it until something expensive breaks (transmisison, engine, etc). Remember, the cheapest car to buy is the one you own already.

    I saved a nissan sentra with a bad oil leak that was about to be junked because some garage told the owner it would need a new engine. The car had about 160k miles on it, so she figured she had gotten her money's worth and was ready to dump it. I fixed the leak for a $10 seal and a couple hours of time, not a hard repair at all, and at 193k the car is still working just fine. Even to have a shop repair it would have only been a couple hundred bucks max. Not a bad deal for 30k miles of transportation.

    On the other hand, if you want to get rid of it, $1000 is probably a very good deal (for you, not the kid), so you might consider taking it.
     
  18. WisJim

    WisJim Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Remember that if you bought a brand new truck, in a couple of years it would need tires, maybe a clutch or brakes, and in 10 years you would be asking some of these same questions again.
    If the body is good, keep driving it. The body can be the most expensive part to do a rebuild of, everything else can be done in small increments.
    A new vehicle will never justify itself, unless it is impossible to get what you need used, and that doesn't sound like the case for you.
    Maybe you need to figure the per month cost of keeping your S-10 going versus a late model used truck or a new one, including the maintenance on the newer truck over the years, and of course depreciation.

    Jim
     
  19. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Vehicle always boils down to money vrs. dependability.Only you know how that equation plays out in your life.Ive done both.Nothing beats turning the key and having it start first time,every time.At least for me at this point of my life.
    I ran an old Mazda truck through 3 engines and 2 trannys,have 2 old VWs.Cant beat them for price.
    BUT,I like that new car VERY much more for safety and driving ease.

    BooBoo
     
  20. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

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    if the frame is not rusted, and rust has not eaten away the other vital parts, keep what you have and replace the parts.