View Full Version : Jimlewis style fleet

11-16-2003, 11:39 PM
Ok kids,
Its time to add to the fleet, the nissan(4 cyl) and the durango need to stop pulling trailers. I would like to use the nissan for sales and my daily driver. The crews need to be in real trucks.
I am impressed with Jim Lewis and the old chevys it looks like a good option. What is all of your opinions on buying 77,78 or 79 chevy 1/2 tons with the 350 auto 2wd? I see them everywhere for 1k and all they need is paint and tires. They seem to be built well and would allow me to have two on the road for the cost of the down payment on a new one?

Pros? cons? or whatever fill me in I'm a moron when it comes to trucks.

11-16-2003, 11:55 PM
Here is an example asking price $1000.00

truck $1000
paint $400
Lettering $250


Am I crazy or can I get away with this?

11-17-2003, 01:40 AM
definately you can get away with it. As Jim has said, repairs are cheap, easily done, and will last a while. If i remember correctly, you run a stander and a wb, right? A half ton would do fine for that.

11-17-2003, 09:51 AM
It will be pulling a 6.5x12 open with a 42 stander and 61 sentar.

So I should be fine with that. Once in a while it would pull the 16' tandem with two 61's

11-17-2003, 12:48 PM
That is a GREAT truck! I wish I could find solid trucks like that around here! All the sheetmetal is good, the cabmounts aren;'t all rusted out,...etc. The REAL beauty of it,..is the simplicity - the ability to work on it.

11-18-2003, 02:02 AM
Just my opinion...So you buy the older truck paint it and letter it. Does it look ok? Yes. But what is the first impression a customer or client sees when that truck pulls up to their property? An old truck, probably with some dings, might be blowing a little smoke. First impressions when trying to get business or keep business are very important.

Will it cost more to have a nice new clean shiny truck? Yes of course. Is it worth it to keep your business and grow your company? Definitely.

Just my opinion, hopefully will create discussion

The Dude
11-18-2003, 02:21 PM
If the truck is clean and painted nice, I really don't think the customer will care what year it is. Secondly, when he bought it, if it did smoke, He could get a goodwrench 350 (260hp/350lbft) from his local chevy dealer for around 1500 dollars and drop that in over the course of a weekend. That engine also comes with a 36 month/50,000 mile warrantee.

So for about 10% of the cost of a new truck he has something clean and dependable that will last him for a long time.

A big thing about the 73-87 trucks though is rust. a little spot can turn into a big one pretty quick. Be careful around the rockers and the cab mounts.

Lawn Tek
11-18-2003, 03:53 PM
You mean there is a 78 Chevy pickup that you can not see through ? One word for 70's Chevy BONDO by the gallons .
Buy and old Ford or Dodge

11-18-2003, 03:59 PM
We had a 73 Chevy and that was one of the best working trucks. That is one truck I wish was still around here.

The Dude
11-18-2003, 05:11 PM
I run a 1979 Ford F100 with a 302. It does fine for what I need it to do.

11-18-2003, 08:29 PM
Patrick (Tbar) you could buy trucks like mine all day long cheap around here. Early to mid 90ís ĺ and one ton Fords with new or good paint and good mechanically and cosmetically. Good bodies and interiors. High mileage but they were fleet trucks like Milestone (generally Chevy trucks) or ABC Concrete Cutting (generally Ford trucks) so well maintained. Got mine for $2800 and itís like new in and out (new paint). Yeah a lot of miles but itís good for many more. It was a foremanís truck and never wired up for a trailer, never pulled anything and the bed was in real good shape too. Had a bedliner when I got it. The guy I got it from sells them for a friend who ownsí a salvage yard and buys these trucks at auctions. He also has a í95 F350 dually with s/s wheel simulators, 7.3 power stroke diesel and 5 speed for $3500 yup thatís right. No bed on it but itís in great shape and a very sharp truck (chrome grill too). He can get you lots more like mine or like it all day long if you wanted. They look a lot newer for just alittle more money. I like Lewisís fleet though, but this is just a thought. Find a local salvage yard and ask if they ever go to any auctions. They should be able to get these types trucks cheap for you.
Just a thoughtÖÖ.
Talk to ya later,

11-18-2003, 08:31 PM
Here's a pic of the $3500 F350 just to tease everyone :p I know it says 4500 in the window but the guy said i could have it for 3500. Looks like 92 not 95 oh well it's a good looker :)

11-18-2003, 11:16 PM
I will fly up there and buy that now!

11-19-2003, 12:16 AM
no you can buy mine for 3500 and i'll get the F350. I've been wanting that truck for a while and may be able to get it now that things are paid off and I have some money!

Tell you what, I'll sell you mine for $3000. It is like new in and out. a couple scratches but the paint is new. has bedliner and cd player (new). everything works. I have more than $3k in it. come and get it, you have my phone number! 812-378-9729 email eric@cuttingedgelawncare.biz

11-20-2003, 07:56 PM
Originally posted by RyanVT2005
Just my opinion...So you buy the older truck paint it and letter it. Does it look ok? Yes. But what is the first impression a customer or client sees when that truck pulls up to their property? An old truck, probably with some dings, might be blowing a little smoke. First impressions when trying to get business or keep business are very important.
I don't know... my customers don't seem to mind my truck, as a matter of fact, many openly comment on how they like it. The other day, one of my clients had some friends over for a little "golf outing". They (he and his two friends) walked out to the street and were walking around looking it over as I was working in the yard that day. To me, that in itself is like a compliment. I get comments on it all the time, as it's just a novelty, but it works everyday. It's only 28 yrs. old. Oh,.... and there's not a drop of bondo in it.;)

11-20-2003, 08:23 PM
Runner Iíve always wanted to say this ever since I first saw that picture but never got around to it:
That is a sharp rig. I really like how the truck and trailer match so well. Took the chrome all the way to the trailer wheels to match the truck, nice touch. All green very cool. Really like the added touch of the blacked out headlights and the black bugsheild and windshield visor too! I also think those little fiberglass marking rods look kinda neat. Like the step rails and the toolbox under the bed too. Just a sharp setup. I generally am not impressed with older trucks for LCO bizís (possibly because of the many old beaters I see around here) but Lewisís trucks and yours are the exceptions. Heck your truck looks better than mine! Personally I like white better though ;) anyway just wanted to say you got a good looking outfit that you should be proud of.

11-20-2003, 09:50 PM
Tbar, If you can get trucks similar to that green one for a thousand you should forget about lawncare. Set up a locator business and make some real money. Love the looks of an older truck fixxed up and still working.

Runner, Love that truck!! Must be a rare find in Flint to find an older truck that is not ate up.

11-22-2003, 10:59 PM
I have a Nissan Frontier (4cy, 5spd) and plan to use it as a start up for my first season (temporary). I want a 6X10 and to pull two wb's and the hand tools with it. What do you think?

What did you pull w/ your Nissan? Manual or auto? How long was the it your work truck? Stopping power? Gas mileage? Any thing I should consider?

It is rated to tow 3500 lbs, and I don't think I would get too close to that. Thank you in advance for your help!

11-23-2003, 12:20 PM
Z, Up until a month or two ago I used the exact set up you are talking about. 97 Nissan 4 cly pulling a 10 foot trailer with two walk behinds. Can't complain about the truck at all. Around town it was easy to maneuver into tight spots and the breaking power was acceptable. On the twice a month that I have to travel to the next town its highway manners were ok. I have the four foot sides on the trailer so traveling at more than 55 was not an option unless there was a prevailing tail wind. Used the set up for two years with no problems at all with the truck. Would be still using it but daughter will be driving back and fourth to college starting next semester

lawn jockey
11-27-2003, 11:10 AM
Ok Here is a different way of looking at it! We have a 973/4 ton regular cab long box and a 2001 3/4 HD crew cab and we just purchased a 1980 1 ton dually like runners! We picked it up for 500.00 bucks from an asphalt co. freinds of my partener. Cab is solid has 53000 miles on it they just didnt use it anymore all of the maint. and repairs are done by the chevy dealer. Ha its even the same Co. colors as ours! OK now to my point If a customer sees you pull up in a 40,000 dollar truck he or she might think Oh boy this is going to be costly he has to pay for all of those new trucks! Or you can pull up in a decked out nice looking older truck and he or she will say WOW his truck looks awesome if he takes care of our lawn like he does his trucks our lawn will look great! and at a fair price!!!! Plus the bonus side of it they are simple and quick to work on ,parts are a dime a dozen and like nentioned before you can buy a brand new crate motor from GM for 1500.00 bucks Just a thought Cory

11-27-2003, 12:44 PM
1977? You are getting close to 30 years old! If you are really talking about "fleet" trucks, that employees will be driving and you need to depend on, I would go newer. Small and large things just start failing from old age. If it is a truck that you will be working on and driving yourself, than it might be fine. There are a lot of 3-4 year old formerly leased trucks that are in like-new condition available. Yes, you may have to take out a loan for it, but if you are making money off it, the truck should pay for itself and then some.


12-03-2003, 12:26 AM
I bought a 92 chev. c1500 with a 5.0 5 speed for the first truck when I went full time this year. It's a nice truck, dependable, looks good but won't pull worth crap. Definitely get the 350 and a 373 rear at least.