How To Buy A Classic Chevy Pickup Truck

February 25, 2013 at 3:06 pm

1950 classic chevy pickup truckMaking the decision to buy a Chevy truck is very wise. Making the decision to buy a Classic Chevy pickup truck is even better. A lot of people fantasize about getting their hands on a Classic red 1950’s Chevy pickup truck with a silver grill. Visions of the sun reflecting magnificently off of the brand new paint job are enough to make you head to the nearest junkyard and see if you can salvage anything resembling the classic look. But before you head off too quick and end up blowing all of your money, follow this step by step guide on how to buy a classic Chevy pickup truck.

1: Determine what kind of Chevy you want
Some people will go in blindly with no idea of what they want. They just want a truck that looks old and has the Chevy emblem on it. However, taking the time to really put some research into the decision and knowing a little bit about the ins and outs of classic Chevy’s goes a long way. For one, you might pick a certain truck and realize that it’s nearly impossible to find aftermarket parts for it so you’ll be stuck with a truck that’s just sitting in the front of your house.

Another thing to think about is whether you want to buy a truck that has not been restored, or one that is already restored. Obviously getting a pickup that has not been restored will cost you less initially, but buying a restored Chevy pickup will mean you can enjoy it right as you purchase it. Keep in mind that fully restored Chevy pickups are not cheap by any means and can run you well into 5 figures.
In this first stage, you should also research any recalls the model you want might have had in the past and any common mechanical issues. This way when you actually go to purchase the truck you’ll have a decent idea of what problems you should look for and expect.

2: Look up the pricing
We touched on this a bit in step 1, but the price you pay for a classic Chevy pickup will largely depend on how much work needs to be done to it. With a truck that isn’t road ready, you’ll have to invest some money into Chevy pickup truck parts, so be sure to keep those costs in mind when pricing your options. Exhausts, bed replacements, windows, frames, fenders, flares and other parts can really start to add up.
You can try doing a search on Craigslist to find what price similar models are going for. You will likely run into some issues finding the exact same type and the condition of the trucks will vary considerably. You can also pick up a classic car guide that you find in grocery stores or 7-11’s. These typically have a wide range of classic Chevy pickup trucks so you will be able to get a rough estimate of the price. Again, keep in mind the cost of Chevy pickup truck parts when researching prices.

3: Look for a truck
This is either the fun or stressful part depending on the level of success you have. Search E-Bay, Auto-Trader, Craigslist, local classifieds, classic car forums, and any other possible source you can think of. Compare prices and call up the owners to see how negotiable they are on their price. Just like buying a newer car, you can and should try to haggle a bit with the price.

When you actually go to physically look at the truck, this is a perfect time to see if you can get your hands on some free Chevy pickup truck parts. Some of the people selling classic cars bought them as a restoration project but just never got around to starting or finishing it and just want to get rid of it. They may have tons of extra parts they bought that they’re willing to give you for free or at a discount.
If the car is running, make sure to check out all of the issues you researched in step 2. Ask specifically if the owner had incidents with any of the common problems the particular model has. If the car isn’t running, check and see if any necessary parts are missing such as the battery or even the engine.
Also check and see if the truck has a clear title.

4: Seal the deal
After you have checked everything out and agreed on a price, it’s time to seal the deal. If your state has any laws in regards to registering or titling classic cars (antiques) make sure you take care of all of that. Once the title has been transferred you’re all set to go!

After the sale
Once you have the truck in your possession, look around for Chevy pickup truck parts on Craigslist, forums, and online. Classic Chevy’s have a large community so finding the truck parts should be no problem at all.