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Any Experience With An El Camino?

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Everyday Chit Chat Any Experience With An El Camino?

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  • #77237

    Tigertree
    Member

    I am getting a little pick-up truck for a lot of reasons. Primarily, we are constantly renting uhauls to move fixtures, ikea runs, house projects. My budget is low, around 1,500. So for that 1,500 dollars I can get a relatively new small pick-up like a Tacoma, Ranger, S-10… etc or a late 70’s/early 80’s not show worthy El Camino. Truthfully I have always wanted an El Camino, and as long as it runs well, cleaning it up, painting it, that stuff seems pretty fun. We’ve learned through my motorcycle escapades though, that I am willing to try anything mechanical but with varying degrees of success.

    So for 1, does anyone know how the size of the El Camino bed compares with small pick ups and 2, am I going to be spending a couple hundred bucks a month to keep it running?

    I think the answer is to obviously go with the newer pick up for both fuel economy and repair costs, but I have really wanted one of these for a while so it would be cool to justify it.

    #289611

    blammo
    Participant

    Mechanically, it’s basically a Chevy Malibu, so any guy in the midwest with a lift & a set of tools that calls himself a mechanic will be able to work on it & parts will be cheap. It’s still going to be a 20 year-old car at best though, so buyer beware.

    Since it’s based on a passenger sedan, the beds are small, but you can probably fit a decent amount of stuff in there if you get one of these things:

    If I ever get rid of my pickup, an El Camino is definitely in my future, as the only thing that can reconcile my muscle car lust and need to haul motorcycles. I’ve always wanted one of those things.

    #289612

    Tigertree
    Member

    So the bed is smaller than an s-10, ranger or tacoma?

    #289613

    blammo
    Participant

    Well…I believe all those trucks come with different bed options, from short bed (6-foot) to long bed (8-foot) with the El Camino coming somewhere in between at 80 inches long. The inside of the bed is curved at the ends so hauling a piece of plywood might be an awkward proposition. And keep in mind, it’s technically licensed as a “truck” but suspension-wise, it’s really a car. So massive loads of sod, concrete blocks, or whatever else you can physically fit in the bed might not be that well accommodated.

    #289614

    groundrules
    Participant

    Tigertree wrote >>
    So the bed is smaller than an s-10, ranger or tacoma?

    there’s not even a standard bed size between the models you have listed. probably most common configuration for small trucks is a ~4X6 bed. this changes with options like step (flare) sides, extended cab or not, or optional long beds.

    EDIT: oops, blammo beat me to it. sorry.

    #289615

    Motorist
    Participant

    Have you looked into the actual cost of an el camino? I looked for one a little over a year ago and they were either dirt cheap and not running or fixed up and kind of pricey for an old ass sort of truck. If you can’t find one, you might also look for a Ford Ranchero. Doesn’t quite have the same street cred that you might get with an el camino on the west side but will still do what you’re looking for.

    You could also haul a lot of stuff with a Subaru Brat…

    #289616

    blammo
    Participant

    Motorist wrote >>

    You could also haul a lot of stuff with a Subaru Brat…

    …with those crazy seats in the back of the truck! Never mind that it’s totally illegal to ride in the back of a pickup. I love those things, worst/best idea ever.

    #289617

    Tigertree
    Member

    Yeah, I looked for a Brat. There are 2 El Camino’s on craigslist right now in my price range that claim to be running well.

    #289618

    groundrules
    Participant

    blammo wrote >>

    Motorist wrote >>
    You could also haul a lot of stuff with a Subaru Brat…

    …with those crazy seats in the back of the truck! Never mind that it’s totally illegal to ride in the back of a pickup. I love those things, worst/best idea ever.

    +1 style points for suggesting a brat.
    -8 redneck points for not knowing that you CAN ride in the back of a pickup truck if you’re over 16.

    http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/4511.51

    hell, can even put yer babies back there, as long as you keep ‘er under 25.

    (E) No driver of a truck, trailer, or semitrailer shall knowingly permit any person who has not attained the age of sixteen years to ride in the unenclosed or unroofed cargo storage area of the driver’s vehicle if the vehicle is traveling faster than twenty-five miles per hour

    #289619

    blammo
    Participant

    groundrules wrote >>

    blammo wrote >>

    Motorist wrote >>
    You could also haul a lot of stuff with a Subaru Brat…

    …with those crazy seats in the back of the truck! Never mind that it’s totally illegal to ride in the back of a pickup. I love those things, worst/best idea ever.

    +1 style points for suggesting a brat.
    -8 redneck points for not knowing that you CAN ride in the back of a pickup truck if you’re over 16.
    http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/4511.51
    hell, can even put yer babies back there, as long as you keep ‘er under 25.

    (E) No driver of a truck, trailer, or semitrailer shall knowingly permit any person who has not attained the age of sixteen years to ride in the unenclosed or unroofed cargo storage area of the driver’s vehicle if the vehicle is traveling faster than twenty-five miles per hour

    -100 redneck points for even considering driving under 25 mph

    I will concede this one though. I’ve always done it anyway but assumed it was illegal.

    #289620

    lifeliberty
    Participant

    and as we’ve seen this week, don’t use people to hold down the matresses you put in the back of the pick up, use tiedowns. http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/local_news/stories/2009/07/21/teendies.html

    #289621

    blammo
    Participant

    lifeliberty wrote >>
    and as we’ve seen this week, don’t use people to hold down the matresses you put in the back of the pick up, use tiedowns.

    Oh come on, what’s the worst that could happen?

    #289622

    dru
    Participant

    @blammo – actually saw this happen once north of Bowling Green. We were heading south on 75 and a turtle shell on top of a mini-van had busted open. There were golf clubs, strollers, kids bikes and stuff mangled all over the road. About 1/2 mile ahead there was a minivan on the side of the road with a couple that looked highly disgruntled with each other standing in the median. It looked as if they had just left suburban Detroit heading south for vacation. I’m not sure they made it, and even if they did, I am sure someone has still never lived down not securing the turtle shell.

    #289623

    blammo
    Participant

    You know, as I give this further thought, I love an El Camino in all its Whiskey Tango glory but I will say that for pure utility, nothing beats an actual pickup truck. Also, I have found that the “cooler” or “nicer” a pickup truck is, the more worthless it becomes. There’s plenty of bitchin’ Chevy pickups out there with immaculate paint jobs, low-profile tires, and tonneau covers to “clean up” the back end. Will these guys come help you when you need a load of gravel delivered? HELL NO. No way are you going to scuff up these cruisers.

    No, the most useful vehicle is the mid-90’s Toyota pickup, with the bed all rusted to hell, and 300K on the clock. You can pick ’em up for a grand and they just won’t die. They are hopelessly fugly, and therefore you can be fearless about where you park them, when you drive them, and what you choose to haul in them. People will get out of your way when they see you coming, and no one would bother to steal one. It is pure liberation in all its 4-wheeled glory. It is the opposite of trying to look cool, and therefore is the epitome of cool in its utter lack of self-consciousness. It is as hip as a rusty wheelbarrow when all the cool kids have shiny 1 gallon buckets.

    #289624

    Tigertree
    Member

    How about late 80’s rangers? I like the look of those. Small engine so good mileage and I don’t see myself towing a boat anytime ever.

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