If you’re thinking about getting a cheap truck to drive around town on chores, then you’ve got a wealth of options. While there are many affordable brand-new ones, you can potentially get one for cheaper than any retail price. All you need is some mechanical skills, and you should be able to restore a used truck to full working condition. Here are some tips on how you can do that.
Know The Truck You’re Restoring
When you are out hunting for a truck to restore, you should do some research on the potential candidates for restoration. Different trucks can have varying requirements. Trucks are better when it comes to restoration because they are less demanding when it comes to materials and parts. Additionally, truck designs are very durable and stay a long time in the market. You can expect to get spares easily and do fewer repairs. But some trucks are easier to fix or have the sort of features that you want. Knowing what is possible with a restoration project will allow you to decide on which truck to invest in.
The first thing you should do when getting the truck from the seller is to take initial pictures and catalog everything. This documentation should continue as you go through the project since it gives you a better idea of what needs to be done and what still needs doing. Documenting the restoration will also allow you to go back and check if something goes wrong. For example, if the truck doesn’t start or a part doesn’t work as it should, going back in your records can give you a clue about what you did wrong.
Acknowledge Your Limits
While it is great that you are doing this restoration, you should also know the limits of what you can do. Depending on your level of skill, this can be different for each project. Additional limitations come in the form of equipment you have. For example, some restorers have a full machine shop that allows them to fabricate necessary parts or pieces. Recognize if something is outside your level of skill or ability then turn to someone for the right help. It adds to the costs, but you can be sure of high quality with experts with the best tools.
Buy Parts Piece By Piece
Restoring a truck is not a continual process, especially if you are doing it as a hobby. There are times when you work on only one part of the truck until it is in good condition, then you stop for a while. So it is only a good policy only to buy parts when necessary. This can help save on your budget since you are not spending it all in one go. For example, you might need that DD15 overhaul kit, but you shouldn’t buy it unless you are finally working on overhauling the truck engine.
Join The Online Community
There is a rich online community for car and truck restorers. Some forums and communities are willing to trade stories and expertise. They might also have resources that you might need. For example, if the truck you are restoring requires a specific part, you might scour the stores for it. But it would be a lot easier to post an inquiry if anyone has a spare of that part. You can potentially get someone who has it and would be willing to sell it to you at a lower than market price.
Be Thorough As Possible
If there is anything you shouldn’t do, it is to cut corners or skimp on anything. Doing everything in a hurry can only result in problems. Additionally, skimping on parts and processes to save money will only cost you more in the long run. It is better to spend time and money now so that the truck runs smoothly. It is more expensive to fix your restoration project if it gets into an accident or something malfunctions while you are driving. Do everything right the first time, and you will have no worries when you are behind the wheel.
While buying a truck is much easier, it can be more fulfilling to see an old truck get up and running again. It shows that you have the skills and knowledge to get it operational, and that is nothing to ignore. Additionally, your major investment in refurbishing a truck is time. For those who have more time than money, working on a car restoration to get it working again can be a worthwhile project and something to be proud of.