Do you want to build a Ridler Winning, a quarter-million-dollar show truck or something fun to drive that looks like it just rolled off the farm? Figure out what it is you want out of the project before getting in too deep. Remember that oftentimes these things snowball out of control and that daily driver project soon turns into a frame-off resto. Once again, be honest with yourself. Taking a bare cab and building a daily driver is a lot more work than buying a running/driving truck for the same intentions, and vice versa. If you’re going to be tearing it down to bare metal and doing a frame-off, that pile of sheetmetal that has already been torn down and sandblasted might look more appealing than that running/driving ’73 Ford.
Figure out the kinds of things that are above your abilities for it will be these things that will end up costing the most. Can you wire the truck? What about engine work? Can you do body and paint work? Who’s going to weld up the patch panels or that Mustang II IFS kit for you? All of these things either require your skills or the skills of others, which usually costs money. One of the best things about being involved in a car club is the community that they create. Talk to your buddies and the guys at your local cruise nights. Who knows how to weld? Who knows electrical? What about a good paint guy? The guys with the finished trucks know the answers to all these questions as they’ve already done the legwork for you; use it to your advantage.
Once again, be honest with yourself. If that potential project has a crumpled front fender and grille due to a frontend collision and your body working skills end at wiping dust off a fender, better walk away from that one or take into account what it will take to replace the offending steel in question.
If you’re goal is to build a decent daily driver and that potential project is a complete truck with some carb issues and you’re a decent tuner, go for it. There are a number of projects out there sitting because of someone else’s inabilities so use it to your advantage whenever possible. Good luck and let us know what you guys find! CCT