Im not really one for naming cars or projects. I have the Black Vette, the Green Vette, the Camaro and so on. It just not my thing, but for some reason this truck is getting called Project Scrap Metal. Thats really what this truck is. The Chevy is too far gone to save but for some other reason, possibly related to why I want to name it, I am going to attempt to bring this truck back to life.
I started driving my V8 swapped Mazda around a little to break-in the engine and work out whatever little bugs it might have. I must say, I hate the location of the steering wheel. Its just to high for the seat position. I’m 5’10” and about 150 lbs …. so pretty skinny. I like my steering wheel down low. I don’t feel I should be looking over it.
My options to fix this seemed to be to find a tilt column for a B2200. Not sure if they even make one. I could raise the seat, I checked the head clearance and I have plenty. Except for the fact that I like the location of the dash. I can see fine, the wheel is just out of place. The last option I came up with was to lower the column.
When you drop a truck 6″ you can expect the factory shocks not to work. I know, I know there are a few lucky guys who say there factory shocks work just fine compressed 6 or more inches, but I have never been that lucky. The new Monroe shocks blew out within a few miles. Not like it mattered, they were bottomed out anyway.
Typically it takes a while to figure out the best shocks for your application. Thankfully, now a days we have the internet and in this case a Mazda Facebook Group. I simply posted a question asking what shocks would fit in the rear. The common answer was VW Bug air shocks.
It seems most Mazda have broken antennas and that just didn’t work for me or my mini. If you have every replaced an antenna, you know they attach from the under side of the fender. My plan was to unbolt the side of the fender and try to pull it out enough to get to the antenna. This actually worked, but I noticed there were only two bolts left holding it on.
Might as well take it all the way off since its still kinda in the way.
After I figured out the factory block was junk it was time to get it out of there.
Got the Block out and … a little while later, I had the tranny out as well. I then borrowed a bare block, head and manifolds for the mock up process. Since so little was online about this swap, I thought it was best to make sure it would all fit before I was to committed to swapping in a SBC. It’s also easier to work with.
I found this little Mazda on Facebook. Its been living on a farm, working way to hard. He gave up his heart to that farm. I believe he has always really wanted to be a Minitruck.
Well… I thought it would be best to really inspect his heart and decided if it could be saved. Turns out that was a waste of time for this little guy. He worked so hard he lost the number 3 piston. Wasn’t anything left of it. The connecting rod was found behind the exhaust manifold outside the engine block.
All new brake parts arrived so I am making progress on that. Nothing special. 80’s Camaro’s had much better brakes then a 46 truck so stock was plenty of an upgrade. New rotors, new calipers, new drums, new bearings, and new wheel cylinders.
Electrical is about done, need to finish headlights and tail lights when they are installed.
After searching for about a year I found this gem in New Mexico for $1200. Its a 1946 Chevrolet half ton pick up. For some reason I love the front end on these and have been wanting to build one that laid running boards.