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Period Custom: 1978 Chevrolet C10 Shortbed

This 1978 Chevrolet C10 pickup is an intriguing specimen, ranging from custom features as a result of a claimed show-quality build in the late 90s to purportedly having just 3,373 original miles due to being parked not long after purchase by the long-time original owner. That same owner is the one that built the truck for the show circuit, with custom features including custom paint, suicide doors, and a 383 with aluminum heads under the hood. The truck has clearly been off the show circuit for a while now, and is listed here on eBay with no reserve and bidding up to $3,600.

Obviously, the list of custom touches goes beyond what the seller has listed. The taillights have been shaved and relocated via a strip of lights below the gate, and it looks like the door handles have been shaved as well. Wheels are clearly aftermarket, and the entire bed gate has been smoothed over. The paint job may be a factory two-tone on the doors and side panels, but it’s clearly been extended over where the taillights once resided. The quality of the bodywork is always a question on a truck like this, as some builders use filler while others will stick with full metal.

The interior was also refreshed at the same time, and the two-tone upholstery corresponds with the exterior. The seller notes that the one owner (prior to him) operated a chrome shop where the truck was parked each day. As such, he didn’t use it much, and even less so when the Chevy was converted into a show truck. That’s why he believes the mileage is genuine, but I’m not certain it matters much on a truck where all of the original details have been stripped away anyway. And honestly, given this Chevy is like a snapshot into the custom truck trends of the late 90s, I wouldn’t return it to stock but would simply clean up the trick work that’s been done.

The 383 does look pretty trick, but no word on whether it also has just over 3,000 miles or if that’s just the mileage on the body. Regardless, the attention to detail seems pretty high under the hood, and this seems like the kind of truck that just needs a proper detailing in order to return to its former self. Show trucks like this look awesome parked under the bright florescent lights of a local convention hall, and I’m sure folks local to West Burlington, Iowa remember this C10 from local car shows and cruises. Hopefully, the next owner keeps the period details intact and gets that 383 to fire up in anger once more.


  1. Robert Berge

    Those 90’s rims would be the first to go.

    Like 12
  2. Skorzeny

    The worst wheels (rims) to have been put on a pickup. Ever.

    Like 10
  3. PaulG

    Now you don’t see that everyday.
    A real time capsule.
    Stock it’d actually be worth more, but a museum might pick it up relatively cheap.

    Like 3
  4. Howard A Member

    I think it looks pretty cool, certainly nothing I would do to mine, but someone did a lot of work to this. No tailgate, suicide doors, that’s not easy stuff. I doubt you’d be able to drive this on the street. I heard one Edelbrock is a nightmare, 2 must be double the fun. 3,300 miles since rebuild, maybe.While the motor is impressive, pretty silly, and this truck with a regular, STOCK motor would be a lot nicer. Why do all these vehicles need motors that would power a Pro Stock drag racer to victory?

    Like 3
  5. OhU8one2

    Crazy custom build. They left the big door rear view mirrors and rear cab trim below back window. Plus did they leave factory tu-tone trim on the sides?But removed door handles and tail lights. Wheels must be owners choice, cause I know of nobody who likes them.

    Like 6
  6. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    Personally, this truck fits well in a 90’s car show, but I would drive it to the local detail shop, then drive it to my local coffee shop for photo shoots to be put on a poster of how not to customize your truck. Lol 🙀
    God bless America

    Like 4
  7. Snotty

    Ugliest wheels ever!

    Like 7
  8. jerry z

    As quoted in American Graffiti, “What a waste of a beautiful machinery!”.

    Like 5
  9. Joe Haska

    This truck brings up some interesting comments, which I have several. First, I produced an indoor custom car show for twenty years. One thing I know is, I don’t know what a show car is and I don’t think anyone else does either. I would say, that in its strickest definition, it is a vehicle that is built just to look at, you don’t drive it, you can’t do anything with it, that will jepradise it’s show quality. It has one specific use, period. There are not allot of show cars and this truck certainly is not one. Show cars are designed to win shows, just like race cars are designed to win races. To be competitive and the best of the best the vehicle can only do one ,and it has to be better than anyone else. Of course a race car can go to a show and visa versa, but you won’t win. Good news this truck is not a show truck, it is a C-10 short box, very desireable right now. Also, the goofy modifications can be corrected and it could be a greart truck. It will be interesting to see what the sale price will be.

    Like 0
  10. Maestro1 Member

    I think it’s a lovely build, I need a tailgate and the engine is questionable as Howard said. I’m sure I’ll get an argument but I would replace the mill with something with more calm, like a 327 crate or a 350. Certainly a 4 speed Tremec Automatic. And A/C which I can’t be without where I live in the Summer.

    Like 0
  11. Desert Rat

    Oh, I would buy this truck just for the wheels! (no, they are hideous!) This is what happens when you go to far with the a custom idea, might seemed like a good idea at the time but now you have ruined the truck. The door mods might could be reversed (see what I did there) but what do you do with the rear? I for one want my truck to have a tale gate. The whole mess just does not go together. Why go to all that trouble and leave the rest of the truck looking stock (factory trim, mirrors, and cheap looking rear sliding window). Still to each his own, some of the things I’ve done in the past to my vehicles under the premise of ” wouldn’t that look cool to do” would make you all sake your heads too.

    Like 3
  12. 396k10

    What a shame! Everything about it is hideous!

    Like 4
  13. Karl

    The 78 GM pickups very prone to shedding paint and aquiring rust at a pretty fast pace. There was a lot of work put into this vehicle but it all ended way to soon. Why are those big mirrors still on it? Those wheels gotta go! The engine should have been left stock and the money he put into this engine could have been used on the body mods. As far as the engine that in the pickup it’s all for show only I can absolutely guarantee this engine has no way to handle the fuel and air this setup could provide and a tunnel ram is only good for one thing wide open throttle and high RPM! Some of the pieces are ok but when all put together it truly does nothing for me.

    Like 2
  14. Dave

    I’ll agree, what a waste. A pickup truck without a tailgate is no longer a pickup truck and the engine doesn’t look too streetable to be driven to the lumber store or garden centre. I’d buy this just for the engine and dump the body.

    Like 0
  15. PJH

    Well I see everyone that commented is in line with my opinion.
    Why do all those mods and still keep the mirrors and color scheme?
    Why eliminate the tailgate??
    Now it’s useless as a truck.
    Nothing about it is “show worthy” anyway!
    Not a fan of shaving door handles myself.
    And those wheels!! I would scrap them instead of selling them, for fear of seeing them on the road somewhere again!!

    Like 0

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