4X4 With 350 V8: 1971 Chevrolet K5 Blazer

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I’m on a 4WD kick these last few postings – the International C1200, the ’87 Sammy, an Eagle, and now here on eBay, this hunky 1971 Chevrolet Blazer. I’m a Ford guy (ok, I am not a guy, but you know, I’m repeating the idiom), but we loved our “good used” Blazer – it never gave a lick of trouble and ran forever. This Blazer is bid to $17,300 with no reserve. Its working address is Reardan, Washington (pop 637 souls, and way more tractors and livestock), and you might be able to drive it home if you’re handy mechanically. The truck is a work in progress and though the seller doesn’t directly say so, it does run – you can tell by the tracks into the dirt where the photos are taken. But it’s seen a lot of improvements, and while that’s a major bonus, I like to know the new parts have seen some miles before setting off into the sunset.

The engine bay reveals its original Hugger Orange color scheme – bummer about the repaint. It’s a lot easier to find Hugger Orange than white in a field or a parking lot, but more on that later. The engine is Chevy’s venerable 350 cu. in. V8 with a rebuilt Holley 1850 carburetor, an upgraded alternator, new fuel lines, a new HEI distributor, and a brand new electrical system front to back including the harness, fuse box, bulbs, connections – everything. All the heater hoses and the core itself are new; the brakes have new front pads and a complete rebuild on the rear drums. The battery is new, and every type of fluid in the truck has been changed. This truck is an automatic; Chevy offered the three-speed Turbo-Hydramatic TH350 in these first-gen Blazers. The NP205 transfer case was standard with an automatic.

The interior was also left in its original Hugger Orange. The front seats are fine, and the rear bench seat is present. The seller notes that every gauge works as it should, thanks to the new wiring harness. The truck has a soft top, but unfortunately, a previous owner tried to install a sunroof in the hardtop. The seller covered the hole with plexiglass. Research shows replacement hard tops are few and far between, so maybe fixing the original top goes on the buyer’s “to do” list. The tag is still in the glove box.

Ah, there has to be bad news – in the form of the tin worm. The good news is that new inner and outer rockers are included in the sale, and while you’re at it, now’s your chance to repaint the truck! Work already completed on the exterior includes new front and rear bumpers, new exterior lights including bezels, new badging, and the icing on the cake: new woodgrain side moldings still in the box. That stuff is pricey! Blazers are competing for collectors’ attention with Scouts and Broncos – they’ve all risen in price. Some early Blazers are at six-figure asking prices, but reasonable examples are still out there, thanks to high production numbers. What do you think it will take to find this one a new garage?

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  1. Nevada1/2rack NevadahalfrackMember

    Eastern Washington-much better clime for a 4WD than near the coast. Someone did a huge amount of work to keep it on the road though sparing it the “…brand new wood grain side molding still in the box..”. Good call.
    Nice rig.

    Like 2
  2. Scrapyard john

    I really like these, and this one would be fun to take the top off and kick around in. But a fair amount of rust, a bad repaint, mismatched tires, and probably plenty more issues you’ll have to sort out and it’s approaching 20 grand. I guess that’s what the market is these days, but I couldn’t swing it. Like I said, these are one of my favorite vehicles, but I can hear the creaks and rattles and smell the burnt oil from here lol. Oh for the days when you could pick these up for around $5k.

    Like 2
    • Jim in FL

      In 1999, I bought mine for $800. Shaking my head that I got rid of it. These are the real deal. I guess people figured it out.

      Like 7
    • matthew B steele

      I remember when $750 could buy this 😔

      Like 6
  3. bobH

    Michelle, as always, great writeup. All I can think is, wow! Prices on these things are way beyond my interest. As a side note, I have one of these, in a horrible sad state of disrepair. It’s available, free, to anyone that is inclined to figure out how to move it. And, it has a fairly decent top, that might be of use on this one.

    Like 2
    • Daniel J Cronin

      Where is it located?

      Like 0
    • ChrisS MA

      Bob, I have a ’71 and looking for some parts. Where are you located and what year is your square body?

      Like 0
  4. John

    Can anyone explain why people are paying 15 to 20k for something worth maybe 5 or 6k?
    This needs way more than meets the eye. And starting 20k in the hole. Wow… This way to the great egress. See my sales associate for info on my prime swampland. HhhhaaAa

    Like 4
    • JustPassinThru

      It’s simple.

      Can’t get them new.

      Can’t get a manual gearbox. Can’t get an engine that runs off a single coil, with a simple ignition power feed.

      Can’t get one without a hundred microprocessors.

      Can’t get one that’s not too expensive to fix, when things break.

      Can’t get one that will simply idle at traffic lights, instead of shutting off.

      Can’t get one that you actually can SEE out of, without explosive air pillows everywhere. Without it communicating to the Internet of Everything.

      THESE things are what people WANT, and they’re scarce on the ground. So Dot-Com entrepreneurs, and coastal home-sellers, now have some Mad Money to buy the kinds of cars and trucks that soon won’t be around for anyone.

      Like 10
      • Chris Cornetto

        Well said but some of us geezers figured this out 30 years ago and kept everything. I used to get made fun at for driving old things and now even an 80s Caprice is oogled over. It’s even worse when people think an 84 Carolla is a classic. Times have changed. I have a 76 square body blazer with a stick and until recently it was like this one considered a hillbilly mobile. Times have changed.

        Like 4

    Amazing I didn’t see a comment as to why a ’71 has ’69-’70 grill in it. Accident damage? Could effect title disclosure. Salvage?

    Like 1
    • Tyler

      I have had 2 of these, a 71 & a 72, & personally I prefer the 69-70 grille over the 71-72 egg crate. The last Blazer I had, a 72 model, I put a 68 front clip on it.

      Like 0
  6. SirRaoulDuke

    That lead photo composition is about perfect for this truck.

    Like 0

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