Progress – Project Update

How is ‘Ole Red coming along, you ask? Oh, you didn’t ask? That’s okay, I’m going to tell you anyways. For those new to my blog, ‘Ole Red is a 1981 Chevy C10 Truck I bought from my neighbor as an “art project.” Yes, I named my truck. Who doesn’t? Maybe it’s a Mid-West thing, I’m not sure, but people around these parts do it often. It also might be my way of paying homage to its beginning. The truck, originally, white with red interior, was a work truck for the OU Health Sciences Center, one of our local public universities, whose colors are crimson and cream (red and white is close enough). You might have heard of it before (think football!).

This truck has challenged me. Why? Because I don’t know diddly squat about auto restorations. (For such a planner personality I have learned that I may be just a tad bit impulsive sometimes but that’s for another post, and besides, that’s what keeps life fun… so just shush your mouth). Twice now I’ve thought about selling the truck. Some of that is due in part to my doubt as to my own abilities and some of that is due to my husband’s complaining that we don’t have room for four vehicles at our house. He’s partially right. However, every time I place the “For Sale” sign in the window my stomach feels sick. I am not a quitter!   Both sales lasted only hours. I just couldn’t do it. At least not just yet.

This truck is simple and it invokes of sense of nostalgia within me. There are no air bags, no auto locks, no heated leather seats, no clock, no auto windows, no bluetooth, no instrument gauges that resemble the cockpit of a 747. It is simple. I really miss simple. Not to mention that trucks back in the day weren’t these 10 foot high monsters we see on the road now. I literally have to turn to the side and slide out of my husband’s truck hoping gravity will be kind to me when I exit. ‘Ole Red, on the other hand, is lower to the ground much like me. Short but mighty and tough.

I will say that accessorizing a truck is about as much fun as shopping for accessories for a wardrobe. Do these step rails match the rims (Does this shirt match my shoes? Ooooo Ahhhh…. See how this works?). It can be a little addicting.

I just finished Stage III of the truck’s progress. The paint job is complete. I had the windows tinted and had a spray-on bed liner installed. I used a little elbow grease and my painting skills to finish some cosmetic improvements to the interior. I removed any grime and potential rusting from the steering column, shifts and metal around the windows. I added a floor plate where some weaknesses in the cab’s floor was showing. I  spruced up the look of the instrument panel. I installed new black sun visors and painted the holders black. I also installed new black arm rests and a black coat hook. And, of course, I added a new black leather steering wheel cover. It looks pretty sharp, if I may say so myself (Yes I did! Bragging rights. I’ve worked hard, darn it!).

Stage IV is currently underway. I have the carpet sitting in my art room. I don’t want to pull the bench seat more than once. I have ordered and am waiting on the custom seat cover to be delivered. Once it arrives I’ll pull the seat, tidy the cab up, install the sound barrier and carpet, install new black seat belts and put on the custom seat cover.


New seat cover

I guess I have to add Stage V to my list now. Every time I think I will be done a new shiny object catches my attention (Squirrel!). My new “Stage V” will include the purchase of black running boards, a black low profile toolbox (which will give the bed a shorter look), new rims (black with red accents or just black, can’t decide), and new tires. And, then…. I’ll be done – OR – I’ll find something else that I JUST CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT!

Life is short, make it fun. Take time to do things you enjoy. Don’t forget that simple can be wonderful. Press through the challenges. Don’t let the rough spots defeat you. Breathe new life into old things. Enjoy new beginnings and the opportunities they can hold for you.

Pictures of the progress…

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