1976 Chevrolet “Good Times” Custom Van

Our mission to bring you the weird, wild, and wonderful of not-quite-perfect automobiles has led us to this ’76 Chevy G20 van, a.k.a. the “Good Times Machine” and it’s up for sale here on eBay out of St. Charles, Missouri. Let us give you the skinny on it!

If you’re still with us, you probably know a thing or two about where and when the Vanning craze happened, and you may or may not “remember” some seriously crazy good times in a van like this, back in the day. We can skip the lame-o history lessons on how vans went from utilitarian workhorses to the pinnacle of custom comfort machines, to pedestrian family-haulers, and back to utilitarian machines this time – what we will say is that “Good Times” was a custom shop in Arlington, Texas, employing upwards of 70 people, turning out a reported 10 vans per day at its peak. It was one of the larger players in the “Shaggin’ Wagon” game, and they did their thing throughout the 1970s and 1980s.

You could get a Chevy, Dodge, or Ford with just about anything your heart (and wallet) desired – and not just from them – many companies across the U.S.A. offered some form of customized van, from mild to wild. To this day, there are some conversion houses still in business, but they’re not making anything nearly as nutzoid as the old-school.

The seller gives us a decent amount of information to work with, but the pictures speak a hundred-thousand more words. We’re told that it moves by way of a carbureted Chevrolet 350 V8 and TH-350 automatic gearbox, and has only gone about 82,000 miles. The van itself reportedly came from Koening Chevrolet in Carbondale, Illinois and was dressed up by Good Times. It’s apparently never been restored, and with the exception of the modern LED driving/fog lamps under the front bumper, the cornucopia of installed aftermarket bits is exactly what you’d expect to see, and period-correct.

Speaking of “seeing”, the pictures show us what looks like a nearly-all-original example, and it appears as though only the gauge cluster is untouched by customizing hands. Everything else has been altered in some way, including the S-shaped flex-pipe dual exhausts that leads to chrome sidepipes.

All in all, it looks absolutely bonkers, and I kind of dig it. It’s worth noting that there are still Vanners out there keeping the dream alive, old and young alike, even if their numbers are small. The only thing which puzzles me is their asking price of $43,000. I mean, I get it that they’re cool as heck and a lot more collectible than they were only a few short years ago, I just wonder if that dollar figure is for real, or if it is meant to keep the tire-kickers away. Let me know what you think in the comments!


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  1. Howard A Member


    Like 17
    • CanuckCarGuy

      Great reference Howard, that’s the ‘Good Times’ that came to mind for me as well.

      Like 11
  2. Chris M.

    Far out!

    Like 6
  3. TimS Member

    Something something clever black light steam clean.

    There, that’s out of the way. I love 70’s and 80’s vans, customs especially. Whole lot of red in there though. Kind of how I imagine a picture of a headache would look. Wish they’s carried over some of the white from the exterior.

    Like 4
  4. Trent

    FogHat on the 8 track . ‘Nuff said .

    Like 17
  5. Tracy J

    Don’t black light the interior!

    Like 5
  6. Ian C

    I sure would like to see the full custom van scene come back around again. But then again, I guess all the current vans (what few there are) look like total crap.

    Like 7
    • Dennis Conko

      It never went away and if you like our website (vanner inc) with a lower case i, you will see many of the current beautiful custom vans on the road today.

      Like 3
    • John Hart

      Ian C having ben there when a plain van went through a miraculus transformation by means of whats this air brush thing? I didn’t give in to the shag, the parts were endless and affordable on a limited budget. My 55bowtie 3100 haslost my interest
      This past week I bought a good shape 2003 express ! The bloods pumping happy,just ordered the new lights. Going to need help
      I want to up grade to a touch screen dash etc.
      John H.

      Like 1
  7. Gene Parmesan

    Obviously this boogie van is RAD, and the seller is free to ask whatever he feels it’s worth. But that Buy It Now is beyond ridiculous.

    Vans and wagons are *just now* starting to be appreciated in the classic car world and as such, they’re some of the last old vehicles to be affordable. Once people start treating these rigs like “investments” instead of just driving them and having fun with them, prices needlessly skyrocket for awhile until people lose interest and the bottom falls out.

    This is awful for all car guys and gals and it’s awful for all these great cars that never get driven because some goon is trying to sell them for quadruple their actual value.

    Like 8
  8. Dave

    I have a completely restored 76 Dodge Boogie Van you can view it on my site on Facebook at BoogieVans & Classic Cars.
    My Van has a fresh crate engine and transmission. Upgraded 17!inch tires. Top of the line Alpine sound system with back up camera. Custom paint and professionally done interior. With over 40k in parts not including paint and rubber why shouldn’t we be asking the same price as some classic cars considering how rare these vans are today. As a matter of fact I took my classic muscle cars to car shows the year before and they didn’t get 1/10 the attention this van got this summer. As a matter of fact we went to three car shows with it and won second and third place.
    These vans are beyond cool and having owned them in the 80’s and now owning one again in 2019 I can’t say enough how much fun it is.

    Like 15
  9. Daves Not Here

    Far Out Man!!!

    Like 4
  10. Classic Steel

    So many miles but under 100k . The question is will i catch anything from all the night moves in the van.

    So to check if this van was rocking grab a black to see of any omissions were left behind 😜👀

    Its a lil high price …

    Like 1
  11. brianashe

    I love vans with sidepipes.

    Like 6
  12. AZVanman

    Takes me back, that’s for sure. As crazy as this one is, it was a blast to build these things in the day. Specially when the foremans wife made hash brownies!

    Like 5
  13. Cncbny

    Looks like the Moulin rouge on wheels! Hey sista, soul sista, better get that dough sista!

  14. Dave

    How come nobody’s ever done an “A-Team” tribute van?

    Like 2
  15. Ken Kuhn

    I have been a member of Central Iowa Vanners since January of 1980. Our club was the first van club in Iowa and have an annual Vanniversary party the first weekend of May. The Midwest/Plains states have several clubs that still get together at truck-in parties from Freeze Out to HOAVC Havoc in the Heart of America Van Council as well as attending eVants in other Councils as far as our budgets allow. Summer of 2020 brings The Van Nationals to Albert Lea, Minnesota. Anyone that drives a van and wants to have a good time is welcome. For reference our club has members with Van’s from 1963 to 2019 so you can see there is something for everyone’s taste
    Vanning is alive and well but there is always room for growth.

  16. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    I didn’t see a link to the EBay ad, so I searched and found it listed on Hemmings: https://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/dealer/chevrolet/custom/2337840.html?refer=blog

  17. hatofpork

    What’s another term for cornucopia? (see description) Aah, yes! Horn of plenty!

    Like 1
  18. BB

    77 Dodge Tradesman 100, Man did I have fun from customizing it, all in & out to travelling as much as I could. Cruised up & down the beach in Daytona to Myrtle Beach, Virginia Beach, Sauble Beach etc. etc. That Van sure loved the Beaches. From the time I was 17 till I was 21, Married, two children and all of a sudden, had to grow up and sold it. What a five year run that was. I envy those who have been able to continue the Van Craze to modern day, my hat is off to you guys, Vanning was, and for those still doing it, THE BEST

    Like 1

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