1982 Chevrolet Long Box Pickup
Personal story and photograph submitted by owner Eric Muskovac
for participation in the the 2008 GM Century Cruise
...I restored my 1982 long box Chevy pickup C-10, which was a 6 year project. I purchased this vehicle 1994 from a neighbor who was the original owner and this individual was a die hard GM truck customer. At this time, I was working at the GM Baltimore and Wilmington assembly plants.
I grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where we were leaders in the Steel and Coal country. As a kid growing up, playing with my friends in my sand box with my cars and trucks, I ways wanted some day to have a truck. The fascination was how much dirt, stones, sand you could haul or tree stumps you could pull out and find out how strong the truck really was and who in the neighborhood had the strongest real truck. Growing up, my father always bought General Motors products. Many of my fathers friends had Chevy pick-ups and one friend used to take us for ice cream after our baseball games and it was a treat to ride in the back of the box. Of coarse at this time in Pittsburgh you never saw someone driving vehicles other than GM, Ford or Chrysler products.
Most of my father's GM vehicles were able to achieve the 250,000 mile mark for usage. We had one GM vehicle, it was a 1979 Nova and we turned over 398,000 miles on the engine. My father, however, did not own a truck and we would always borrow the neighbors or friends to use it for hauling something or using it around the house for projects, etc. I always told my father when I graduate from college, I would like to have a truck, so we could benefit from the things I had learned growing up. As time past, I went off to school and graduated and instead of working in the Steel mills or Coal mines I went into the automotive business working for GM. One of the most fascinating interests of this truck story was not only purchasing and restoring this truck over time, however, was the strength that this specific year or era of truck had. You could tell the structure bolts, bumpers, motor, transmission, springs, shocks and brakes where made to handle truck challenges. In the early 1970-80s GM used to have commercials for the Chevy trucks. Nothing Runs Like A Chevy Truck and then the long time Bob Seger Chevy truck commercial Like A ROCK. Before I had completely restored this truck, there was never a project where my truck disappointed me. The true test was when I was hauling top soil to my home, this truck is a 1/2 ton pick-up and had over 3/4 ton of top soil in the box. No question my truck was strong, dependable and long lasting.
When I decided to restore this truck, I retired it from every hauling dirt, stones or cement etc. I wanted it to be my show truck, with as many of the original chassis components, and engine matching numbers. Many vehicle owners are car buffs, but hardly see classic show trucks. So there was an incentive to complete this project. The other major decision to keep this truck was the condition it was in. The body was intact with only minor rust in four locations. These areas were the cab corners, right rear wheel quarter panel, and right front inner fender.
It started out originally as a C-10 Custom Deluxe Model built in Oshawa, Canada. I modified the exterior and turned it into a Silverado version, and considering this was as work truck, turned the interior into a Silverado version. The Custom Deluxe model did not have carpet, headliner or the blows and whistles the Silverado version had.
Although GM built many of these trucks from 1973-1987 original parts for these trucks are hard to find. I have found out while completing my project, that there has been an increased interest to restoring this era truck series.
During this 6 year project I had the original motor with 169,000 miles restored and kept the small block 305 intact along with the automatic GM transmission, and 373 rear end. From start to finish the truck has received many positive remarks and sometime I have to pinch myself....
GM’s Century Cruise pays tribute to GM’s past and the passion owners have for their vehicles. On Saturday, August 16, 2008 this vehicle and more than 100 other classic GM vehicles will cruise from the GM Global Headquarters at the Renaissance Center up Woodward Avenue to the heart of the Woodward Dream Cruise in Royal Oak and the surrounding suburbs. One of these vehicles will be crowned “top cruiser” based on a text voting campaign.
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