View Full Version : 1972 C10 ... SoCal

06-15-2015, 09:17 AM
So this project kind of started by accident in June of 2014. My first project is a 1970 Nova. It convinced me to join the masses and go the LS route, so I was searching for an engine stand on Craigslist....but came home with this instead.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20140601_094924_zpsim3lzffc-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20140601_094924_zpsim3lzffc.jpg.html)

I was told the truck was lowered with Hotchkis springs. Its got some of the Early Classic brackets and parts here and there. It will get the old mildly built 454 with the th400. I'm going to put on a DIY hydroboost. Then once I get some miles on it and any issues worked out, I'll make a final build plan. Here's the Nova donating the Big Block to its new garage mate.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20140913_154336_zps924jujcx-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20140913_154336_zps924jujcx.jpg.html)

When I bought the truck, it looked almost good enough that you could have dropped the motor. Done a couple things, here and there...then boom! Having a cool old running truck. But it never works that easily.

So within a couple of days this happened (who knew they came apart so fast?):

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20140911_141021_zpsbv7cpxet-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20140911_141021_zpsbv7cpxet.jpg.html)

Then to piss off all the purist and their SPID sheets ... a little of this:

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20140911_172505_zpsfodmoe5y-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20140911_172505_zpsfodmoe5y.jpg.html)

Followed by a little nip here:

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20140827_184247_zpsvxaouw4i-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20140827_184247_zpsvxaouw4i.jpg.html)

Here is how she sits now:

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20150307_084207_zpsaxpaffrm-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150307_084207_zpsaxpaffrm.jpg.html)


https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20150607_162011_zpsbhnniqvm-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150607_162011_zpsbhnniqvm.jpg.html)

And the near future....

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20150329_131340_zps6c28mxcv-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150329_131340_zps6c28mxcv.jpg.html)
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/06/20150329_153857_zpslr9i72nu-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150329_153857_zpslr9i72nu.jpg.html)

Stripping paint and coating everything in epoxy paint from Southern Polyurethane Inc. I'm thinking of calling in sick from work for a couple of days and see how much further I can get with stripping and painting.

06-16-2015, 06:14 AM
Great start to the build! Best of luck!

The Am1nal
06-17-2015, 05:40 PM
Very skilled! I can dream it, but I can't build it like you folks do.

06-17-2015, 06:05 PM
Very skilled! I can dream it, but I can't build it like you folks do.

Yes, you can. I couldn't weld, bought the MIG anyway. Watched the DVD and had at it. These trucks are simple, and if all else fails watch a youtube video. Personally, I leave the heavy duty stuff and big projects in relation to safety (like a roll cage) to pros. Just start. Bite of small chunks. And I reco not buying a project that is too derelict.

And bs46488 turning on your Nova for a C10? Most of us get get into trucks because we can't find a Nova! Awesome.

Bob in St. Louis
06-18-2015, 07:08 AM
Love that body style..."Subscribed"!

06-26-2015, 08:11 PM
Talk to me more about the complexity of the frame shortening...I have damn near the same deal, long bed but with leafs and would like to potentially go this route.

Great start btw!!!

06-29-2015, 08:36 AM

In regards to complexity, the frame shortening is fairly easy.

Here is a how-to from the 67-72 C10 site. I followed this exact same writeup.


I'm not sure if the leafs change anything.

07-06-2015, 09:12 AM
A little bit of an update from over the weekend. Getting closer to first start-up/drive.

Quick little brake overhaul. Before spending big money on any upgrades, I just wanted to get it rolling and back to life. I sourced most of the factory parts from Rockauto. The only issue I ran into were the factory brake hoses were too short. Ended up using some '74 Impala lines instead.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/07/20150628_195717_zpsk0d116ao-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150628_195717_zpsk0d116ao.jpg.html)

I figured my neighbors would not be a big fan of the first start up of the big block with open headers. So I called a couple of local muffler shops that all wanted north of $700 to bend 2.5" exhaust. So I took the 3" straight pipe off of my donor vehicle, bought a couple of mandrel bends to fab up my own exhaust system. Its not going to win any show awards, but I spent about 10% of what the shops were quoting me.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/07/20150704_151955_zps4zkjn1ni-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150704_151955_zps4zkjn1ni.jpg.html)

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/07/20150705_110159_zpsnb6olsid-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150705_110159_zpsnb6olsid.jpg.html)

07-15-2015, 08:07 AM
It's Alive!!!! (Well, sort of....)

I got all the exhaust painted and mounted. Got my fuel sending unit installed, fuel line, and 5 gallons of fresh gas in the tank. Preliminary bleed on the brakes (needs some more bleeding done)

I pre-filled the carb with fuel and it fires up. But then it stalls out and I have exactly 0psi on my fuel gauge. Since the motor was running an electric pump and had a block-off plate on the block, my suspicion is that the previous owner put a cam in it that doesn't support a mechanical pump. I'll pull the old pump and wire it up on truck and see if we can get it running....

07-22-2015, 06:36 AM
Now it's alive. My father came to visit for a couple of days and we spent some time in the garage and got it working.

I had a resistance issue with the starter cables. Made a quick trip to my local welding store and bought some nice thick 2ga copper cable. That allowed the starter to crank a little harder and pull the fuel pressure up.

According to the DMV, this is the first time in 8 years the truck has moved under its own power.

Here is a picture of my father driving around our cul-de-sac.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2015/07/20150721_123655_zpsn7fvyixs-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20150721_123655_zpsn7fvyixs.jpg.html)

05-03-2016, 09:26 AM
Had to complete a kitchen remodel for the wife, so finally back to working on the truck.

Started to make my own wood bed

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160502_074115_zpskjyl7wx9-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160502_074115_zpskjyl7wx9.jpg.html)

replaced a rotten cab corner

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160428_124839_zpsir7lws2j-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160428_124839_zpsir7lws2j.jpg.html)

And started the many hours of sanding I have in my future

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160429_131910_zpsjmq6bbqu-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160429_131910_zpsjmq6bbqu.jpg.html)

05-08-2016, 01:36 PM
Nice man, truck looks great. Awesome job with all the cutting/welding.

67-72 is a wealth of knowledge, love that site.

That view is awesome.

05-23-2016, 07:58 AM
More body work over the weekend. I'm shooting SPI epoxy primer.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160521_143714_001_zpsqukrtoqn-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160521_143714_001_zpsqukrtoqn.jpg.html)
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160521_171634_zpstc0vfhuv-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160521_171634_zpstc0vfhuv.jpg.html)
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/05/20160522_133130_zpsfxvmfipv-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160522_133130_zpsfxvmfipv.jpg.html)

05-23-2016, 04:31 PM
Man, you have an awesome 'can-do' attitude, and we like that! Love seeing a good old fashioned garage build.

06-17-2016, 08:04 AM
Can't wait to see how this turns out! Great job!

06-20-2016, 08:24 AM
Started body work on the other side of the bed.

Want to spray some epoxy soon, but the temperature on Sunday was 108. Probably not good for the paint (or the painter!)

Made a trip to my local Harbor Freight and can now run 2 air hoses. Much easier to work than having to constantly switch out tools on the 1 line.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/06/20160618_104404_zpsp5jyydwp-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160618_104404_zpsp5jyydwp.jpg.html)

07-05-2016, 08:09 AM
A couple of pictures from my weekend progress....

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/07/20160702_101446_zpseiu9rqrc-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160702_101446_zpseiu9rqrc.jpg.html)

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/07/20160703_112200_zpsjlk1sh9f-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160703_112200_zpsjlk1sh9f.jpg.html)

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/07/20160703_112208_zpsrroqedc1-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160703_112208_zpsrroqedc1.jpg.html)

Back together to put away in the garage:
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/07/20160704_122548_001_zpsjfzjzzxp-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160704_122548_001_zpsjfzjzzxp.jpg.html)

09-15-2016, 01:56 PM
Thought i'd post more update photos.

Got the upper cab in epoxy primer
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/09/20160911_161512_zpsetmrrhnn-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160911_161512_zpsetmrrhnn.jpg.html)

final primer for the truck bed
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/09/20160911_172956_zpsqp5spxf5-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160911_172956_zpsqp5spxf5.jpg.html)

Naturally after laying fresh paint, one should cut and drill some holes in it
https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2016/09/20160913_180137_zpsxlnwvm6n-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20160913_180137_zpsxlnwvm6n.jpg.html)

01-13-2017, 10:28 AM
Guess I haven't updated in a while. Still plugging away. Hoping to get on the road in the next couple of months.....

Painted half the truck.

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2017/01/20161028_145921_zps7csmqn9i-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20161028_145921_zps7csmqn9i.jpg.html)

Fitting the wood bed

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2017/01/20161230_155524_zpspmywhwny-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20161230_155524_zpspmywhwny.jpg.html)

And trying to get the interior put together

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2017/01/20161229_135619_zpsggwdihls-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20161229_135619_zpsggwdihls.jpg.html)

Dr G
01-14-2017, 09:49 AM
Looking good.

01-14-2017, 06:52 PM
Any chance you still have those wheels you took off?

01-18-2017, 06:00 PM
That color is sweet! It really makes the wood bed pop, too. Keep up the good work!

08-07-2017, 09:04 AM
Still plugging away.....

Should be taking its maiden voyage in the next 2-3 days!

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2017/08/20170805_193823_zps7jdfxpyw-1.jpg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/20170805_193823_zps7jdfxpyw.jpg.html)

https://static1.pt-content.com/images/pt/2017/08/31715_zpsh38mf0sv-1.jpeg (http://s7.photobucket.com/user/bs46488/media/31715_zpsh38mf0sv.jpeg.html)

08-10-2018, 02:03 PM
Guess I should update to cover the past 12 months. It's alive!

I've been driving it every now and then for a total of 278 miles. Some issues popped up 1) Broke a rocker stud, so I replaced all the studs and valve seals 2) Found 2 cracked valve springs while doing the valve seals, so replaced all the springs 3) always had starting issues, so I bought a new Holley Advenger 770cfm double pumper.

But the rest of the exterior is getting the finishing touches:




08-10-2018, 02:17 PM
So now the natural thing to expect is some mandatory pictures of doing burnouts. Some photos of its first official oil change for the scrap book.

Of course not, you do this instead:

You pull out the big block that you've worked hard on getting all the bugs out of and sell it for some good coin!


Then you consider shedding a tear at the void you just left in your project you built from the ground up. (Plus I scratched the paint on my fender while doing this, so I'm upset at myself)


Then you mend a broken heart and tell yourself everything is going to be okay when you see a nearly finished LS swap in progress (2005 5.3 w/4l65E trans)


Stay tuned for more updates. I'm going to try to get this engine running within the next 2 weeks.

Bob in St. Louis
08-10-2018, 05:05 PM
Sweet truck, I LOVE it!
But you took out a newly built big block, only to replace it with a 5.3??
Curious to your motivation.

Ryans C10
08-10-2018, 08:04 PM
Wow that thing came out super nice! Out of curiosity what did you do for motor mounts?

08-13-2018, 10:26 AM
There were a few reasons I'm doing the swap....
1) I posted the engine and trans combo for sale....and it sold 36 hours later. I told myself if it didn't sell then the swap is a no go.
2) I want to drive my truck to work 1 or 2 days a week during summer. At the time I pulled the motor it was getting 4 MPG. So my 42 mile round trip drive to work would be about 10 gallons of gas for each trip.
3) Almost every side of the big block leaked.
4) Starting the motor was questionable at times. Sometimes it would fire up, some times it would just crank.
5) According to my wife it was loud and smelled, so she would not ride in it.

All said and done it will probably cost me $300 over the sale of the big block and will solve all the items above. A factory 300hp, ~20mpg drop in motor that I can get parts for at my local parts store seemed like a good fit for my application.

I have a set of CPP engine stands then I used some ebay adapter plates with regular SBC motor mounts. I think I put them on the second hole from the front. I can easily fit my entire arm between the back of the cylinder head and the firewall, so there is a lot of room to move this back if you wanted. I am trying to utilize the truck AC motor so I fit the motor mounts to the AC bracket. The AC motor bolts right in and fits between the frame. I'm just going to get some 90degree adapters for the hard lines.


I went with the 1 3/4 Speed Engineering long tube headers. Great fit, just had some tweaking to do on the factory trans hard lines. You can see the firewall clearance from this pic.


Bob in St. Louis
08-13-2018, 11:32 AM
That makes perfect sense.

09-11-2018, 11:00 AM
LS swap complete and back together.

Had to do the tach mod with a resistor to get the tach to respond and calibrate my Autometer speedo but everything is working and got 7.5 miles on it this weekend. Still need to fine tune some items but now its back to a driving project.

Built a 2 to 1 y-pipe exhaust and ran one 3" pipe down the passenger frame with a Borla Pro-XS muffler. Sounds pretty cool.



09-12-2018, 04:36 PM
Dude, you get stuff done! Great looking truck. How do you like the drivability of the 5.3 vs the BBC?

09-17-2018, 01:50 PM
Now that I've finished the LS swap, I can say that the BBC was not for me. The LS is certainly meets all my expectations.

The truck is a completely different vehicle now. In its stock form this engine has plenty of getup and go to get you in trouble.