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Discussion Starter #1
My 1982 GMC Caballero Amarillo

* 267 v8 engine, stock except for a holly carb and eddlebrock intake.
* Stock drivetrain, the turbo350 trans may not be from the truck originally... things have been in and out several times. The rear is original and I have no idea what gearing it is.
* Suspension is mostly stock, ebach springs in the rear, 1" maybe 2" lower than stock. I have the front springs but haven't got them in. 16-inch wheels, I think they are aluminum and I think they came from a Buick or Olds?
* Exterior is... rough. We'll get to that nighmare later.
* Interior is... much like the exterior, more on that later.
* Electrics are... Mostly stock?
* Photos: in time.

The goal:
The truck will be my daily driver. Morning and night, rain or shine. Heat or cold. It will never set tyre on a track or strip unless I'm having a laugh. It will never win a beauty contest or be voted best anything. It WILL get me to work every day, vacations, drives for fun, and it will haul things about, both in the bed and as a light-duty tow vehicle... Motorcycle trailer or the like.
It will not leak water into the cab and it will not grow mold there... (or plants in the bed!)
Road noise will not be excessive in the cab.
The AC will run cold, the heat will be hot, the radio will work, the gauges will live in the dash where they belong, the lights will all light and the horn will beep.

It will start and drive and stop every time I need it too, it will last me until I grow so tired of fixing it that I sell it or until I grow old and am buried in it.

It will get as best fuel economy as I can squeeze out of it, while not one wheel will ever touch a track, I'd still like it to go to and fro with ease. Drive on the highway all day just as happily and efficiently as on back roads. Pull and haul just a little, and be a pleasant drive.

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I had a big old history all ready to go but I'll summarize: I bought the Caballero when I was young and dumb and no little bit distracted and lazy. Had I spent half the time and effort at any point in the first 5 years or so on the care, restoration and upkeep of this truck, this last 5 would not have been such a downward slope.

I would recommend to anyone who is feeling stalled out or overwhelmed on a project that you get some support, either in friends who can help and encourage, or here on boards like this.

Don't give up and don't leave it for tomorrow.

Make a list for yourself of what needs to be done and make some goals and break them down into smaller goals you can deal with. You'll be amazed how much you can get done to the whole thing when you work on just one little project at a time.
If you don't know how to do something, ask, and read up on it. Read read read and make notes to help you.
Don't spend all your time on the net researching though... Or avoiding the issue at hand, but get as much info as you can, get a boost from the rest of us, and get back to it. You'll be amazed!

Prioritize your goals too. This is something I suffered badly from... At any point the shifting of engines about or fiddling with a radio really should have taken a back seat to simple things like staying on top of the rust before it got out of hand, putting on new weather strip, etc.
All the bells and whistles can be fun, but be smart and know where your time and money are best spent first so that you don't loose the car to rust and rot.

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This is what I am doing now and hope to/plan to do in the future, I'll keep my thread here updated as I get things done and or planned out.

Rust repair: -
I am wire-wheeling off all the rust I can find on the body. -The body is pocked with a lot of rust bubbles and open rust 'sores'.
The frame will need a good cleaning and coating and everything that I can get at will get cleaned and painted inside, outside, over and under.
Any and all holes that form will get sealed, everything will be painted with rust sealing/inhibiting paint.
I have been using Rustolium rust 'converting' flat black and rustolium pro-grade flat black paints primarily.

Eventually I'll be putting bed-liner paint in the bed and bed-side of the tailgate and under-coating paint on the frame/under side of the truck.

Weather-tight:
My one goal for this 'summer'... it's already Sept! Is that the cab be weather-tight again.

Eventually:

Put the interior back:
With clean, IE Mold-free carpet and sound deadener, headliner, door panels, spare tire compartment carpet and curtain, trim, dash, ac/vent ducting. I would like to be sure all the wiring is tip-top.

With all projects maybe even do a little upgrading where applicable.

Wait for the motor to die:
Eventually the 267 will drown in it's own juices and I will need to replace or rebuild it. With the goal given way up top that it be as fuel efficient as possible and squeeze just as much drivability out of it all for as cheep as I can afford.
As close to an all-home build as possible and nearly all motor and trans choices are on the table. That's another thread for another day.

Put the AC back:
This car will never, ever race anything more than the punk in the broken down Jimmy that wants into my lane with out a signal or a how-do-you-do... so I don't care about any lost HP, but I do care about sweating to death in the summer. :p

Set the truck up to trailer and haul:
Eventually put a tow hitch on for light duty trailering. This will also tie into...

Suspension:
Because I want to throw a motorcycle in the bed or on a trailer now and then, or a pile of wood at the home improve store, or camping gear, or parts at the junk yard.
I also want to corner and stop respectably and safely. Here in New England and there is rain, snow, sleet, ice, and all the usual hazards on a road. I am going to do some suspension upgrades.

I would like to figure out disk brakes in the rear for sure and any and all other tweaks I might be able to make to the whole break system.
I would like a suspension -springs/shocks/sways/bushings/steering etc- that can handle a load in the bed/on a hitch and also delivers something more modern in the safety/handling/turning department.

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So there it is, a very long post to try to sum up my project!
I hope to have some pictures and video eventually, and I will try to keep posted with progress updates and anything technical I can offer or am asked about so I can help others too.

Jeri~
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Paint

Roughly around the same time (early/mid August 2011 I finished cleaning up the doors, hinges, window felts and quarter windows/seals. I'd done an... OK job cleaning up the mess on the driver's side quarter panel and not such a hot job... But a serviceable one of patching a rusty mess on the front of the driver's rear wheel well/quarter.

I finished sanding the old paint and cleaning up all the rust bubbles I could find and coating the 'sores' with rust inhibiting/converting paint, then a flat black paint all over just to make the whole car one single color and further seal up any open scratches or wounds.
The 'wounds' I either welded up, patched or bondoed/body filled. After a point we stopped because getting the truck to look good/great/grand/show is a huge project and we're running out of warm weather up here. Besides, this is no show car, just a serviceable, loved daily driver-to-be.

In quick succession and with some help from my roommate, we sanded out the bed and coated it with MasterSeries Silver Primer/Sealer. I've worked with both this and POR and for stability, I really like the Silver better, it's UV stable and cures even around moisture. It seems just as durable and rust resistant as well.

When that was good and cured I rolled in the bedliner, Duplicolor Bed Armor... Not a product I will be purchasing ever again or one I would recommend. But the job got done.

Of all the research I've done for this project I have to admit I hadn't spent one moment really looking for a good bed liner, I just ran do Autozone because it was the first/last bit of good weather we had/were going to have for a few weeks.
If I had, I might have found:
http://www.elcaminocentral.com/showthread.php?t=27158
Or any search on the forum or Google to figure out a good brand, product, and even color choices.
This http://www.elcaminocentral.com/showthread.php?p=333459 came too late. :p

We sanded the whole truck, masked everything off and sprayed with Valspar primer, about a week later we sanded and sprayed on three coats of Valspar's Kubota Orange.
We've sanded that down, but are waiting for the rain to go away and a hopefully good day yet before it gets too cold so we can spray one more coat of orange on the passenger side and driver's rear quarter. I went a little too dry on the passenger's side and there were some bug legs/tracks on both rear quarters... Bugs LOVE fresh paint, I don't know why.

When we get the last of the orange good and dry, we'll re-mask and we will be putting black on the top/bottom for the two tone. We'll be putting chip guard on the lower sections as well.

Jeri~

The bedliner


Almost ready to prime
[http://www.elcaminocentral.com/picture.php?albumid=193&pictureid=950[/IMG]

Primer on, ready for color.


Color on and wet.
 

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You sound about like me. Bought it 3 years ago has a think a 350 though. Rough on the outside and I have done some stuff on the inside changed seats and stuff. It doesn't look all that good (kids called it the skunk) but I like it. does what I need and more. I will have to put some more pics in now that I know how. Have fun with yours I like the newer looking front end yours has.

 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Randy :beer:
I rather like the black with white stripes you've got there! Great picture in the snow too.

I think our front ends are the same, pretty much, the grill and lights are out for painting, mine doesn't have the GMC right there in the middle like yours though.

Jeri~
 

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That emblem is from a late model 90's p/u I found at the pull-a-part and it fit the contour of the grill and painted and mounted it. Mine shows better in pics that in real life. Paint is cheap and the stripes were put on with spary can. Bleeds white when washed really bad.
 

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Hibernating for the winter

Well, I didn't get as far as I'd hoped this year, but got a lot done all the same!

The body painting is mostly done for now, I've got a little bit of touch up to do.


I gave a try at cleaning that drivers front wheel and painted it a metallic silver... I don't think that I like it. It looks 'fake', but I am not sure what I want to do with those wheels. They need a cleaning at the least.

I got a few upholstery projects I can work on in the house for the winter, (door panels, sun visors, the headliner) but I've got the 'lero covered up until spring.

I'd love to keep going with the rest of the rust-cleanup on the underside and frame, but that will have to wait a few months more.
It'll give me time to gather up more supplies though, and research my suspension parts list and eventual engine choice.
Getting there slow but sure!

Jeri~
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The Ghost

Hi all,
After quite a while away I have some sad news, I am selling my baby after all this time. It has been a very long road and I have loved a lot of it, but times have been tough and I have had to start over at a new place of work, I just don't have the resources to do what needs to be done, or I want to be done to the cruck.

Last year I cleaned and painted the underside and drove the Caballero all summer long, it was a wonderful payoff for two years of hard work and more than 10 years of ownership through rough times, no money and my many ups and downs. This year though I drove it some, I just couldn't get ahead of the game and with my starting at work it will, or would be years until I could get on top of it again, rather than let all my hard work go down the drain because I was forced to park it, I'm putting it up for sale and really hope one of you, or someone who will soon come to be a part of this amazing group, will get to enjoy her too.

I also want to thank you all so very much for all the help, support, information and inspiration to get as far as I did!

Sincerely,
Jeri
 
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