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Backyard Cleanout: Cheap Workhorses


Spotted on eBay is what appears to be several vehicles from one seller clearing out an old property. The vehicles are nothing super valuable, and it makes me realize that not every “discovery” is necessarily a valuable or rare vehicle. Starting with this 1970 Ford F-100 pickup here on eBay, it’s clear the original owner stopped driving them long ago – while the garbage pail full of beer cans continued to grow. 


Next up is a 1971 Ford Maverick, seen here on eBay and in desperate need of a paint job. This car has a decent interior and what looks like a fairly straight body, but you have to wonder if the primer was simply prep work for a respray or a more involved project. Like all of this vehicles, the seller has no title but has applied for one.


Here’s the oddball of the backyard troupe: a 1980 Datsun 510 wagon, shown here on eBay. By this time, the 510 moniker didn’t mean what is used to and this example is far from a track-day special. It’s a wagon and it’s equipped with an automatic, so you’re buying this one purely for the fuel economy, if anything. I suspect this car will be off to the scrap heap soon.


My guess is this is the one that’s most likely to find a new home: this 1976 GMC Sierra here on eBay is a good bet for a solid work truck, provided the rust on the hood is only skin-deep. Still, like all of these vehicles, I feel the opening bid is very ambitious. Every vehicle here opens at above $1,000, and I’m afraid these are all sub-$1,000 cars and trucks on a good day. It does goes to show you that even when someone calls about a backyard full of old cars, there’s not always gold waiting on the other side. Which one would you choose?


  1. Avatar photo Donnie

    I like the f 100 the most

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  2. Avatar photo MountainMan

    Optimistic seller. Opening bid at $1000 ? I would like to have the two door Maverick but wouldnt give a grand for it. Some people are just too proud of their junk I guess. If the prices were realistic then I would think these vehicles would find new owners without much fuss but the prices too high for the common stuff they have.

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  3. Avatar photo ydnar

    I think the Maverick has wonderful patina! That looks like a lot of back yards around here. That F100 is at least a $1200.00 truck. I’d like to see what engine is in it, hopefully a 390

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  4. Avatar photo RH FACTOR

    Maverick is not a 71. 71 didn’t have the big, impact bumpers. That came in 1974 or 1975, if I remember correctly.

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    • Avatar photo Wayne S.K.

      Word, RH I thought the very same thing…

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  5. Avatar photo AMC STEVE

    Junkyard cars worth scrap only. Junk

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  6. Avatar photo David

    Lovely piece of real estate. The crushed beer cans are probably worth more than the vehicles.

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  7. Avatar photo Bob

    The Maverick ain’t a 1971. Bumpers too big. Still scrap. I’d maybe save either of the pickups for sub a $300 entry fee.

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  8. Avatar photo Ed P

    This looks like a backyard full of parts cars at best.

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  9. Avatar photo Ron (Florida)

    I like the Sierra the best, but it needs a ton of work, I’d be interested at $800, even then I would feel like the seller was getting the better end of the deal.

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  10. Avatar photo geomechs Member

    I’m going to be the perpetual skeptic here. The Ford truck looks more like a ’72 than a ’70. Of course I wouldn’t turn any of that body style down. The ’67 models will always be my favorites.

    The GMC is either a ’77 or ’78, if the grill is correct. The trim pretty much confirms it. If I had my choice of the trucks it would favor the GMC. But then, I worked for a GM dealership for a number of years.

    Maybe I should go for both…

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  11. Avatar photo Keith

    I restored a 71 F100 a couple years ago. Easy to work on, parts are dirt cheap and plentiful (you can build the whole truck from LMC or MACs or whichever). It has the Deluxe interior (non metal door panels) and a floor shifter….kinda cool. Wish they said which engine it has either the 352 or the 390 (hopefully not the 6 Cylinder). Seller says nothing of the mechanical condition though.(“not sure” doesn’t count) but at $1200 I’d gamble.

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    • Avatar photo ydnar

      The 352 was long gone by ’71, possibly a 360? I have a 360, I am not sold on them. The 390 is a great engine. The engines are identical except for the bore and stroke, and compression.

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    • Avatar photo Midway

      Will need brakes all around. I would convert to front disc. Front cab mounts and back cab corners need to be checked for mouse hotel. Worth $500

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  12. Avatar photo Metalted

    Those f100 always look great, even crusty. for sure the pick of the litter.👍

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    • Avatar photo ydnar

      Did you mean “pick-up” of the litter ;>)

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  13. Avatar photo Metalted

    Please stop, with the scrap idea. 50 bucks a ton! Really scrap???Any of these classics surely worth more. A lot more!!👍

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  14. Avatar photo Frode Willmann

    The F 100 is a 1972 and they have the 360 most often. This is also a Ranger version with extra trim

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  15. Avatar photo Jubjub

    The Datsun is surprisingly free of rust. No holes on the front wheel arches even. Too bad it sat out. Yeah, think the Maverick’s a ’74. All really overpriced seeing as a scrap vehicle is lucky to bring much over a $100 these days.

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  16. Avatar photo Mike

    I would take both of the trucks and fixed them up in a heart beat. he Ford look like it might be the best of the two.

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  17. Avatar photo Karl

    The Maverick is a ’74 or ’75 based on the bumpers and the grille, IIRC. It’s a parts car at best, I think. The earlier (’70 to ’73) models had nicer looking bumpers, were lighter, and were less smog-strangled than this one. I have no opinion on the 510 at all. But the two trucks–I’m coming to the conclusion that you have to be nuts to scrap or part out a fully intact Ford or GM truck. They’re easy to work on, parts are easy to find, and if you’re thrifty and careful how you spend your money, it’s hard to come out upside down. And if you do, so what? Have you priced new trucks lately?

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  18. Avatar photo Rob

    The Maverick is not a Maverick but a Mercury Comet. And likely a 73 or 74. But still junk. A $100.00 car at best, if it runs.

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