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Rare Dually: 1986 Chevrolet K30 Crew Cab 454 V8

If you need to haul six horses to a week-long show 1300 miles away, this Chevrolet K30 will do the job for you. Here on eBay is the king of pickups, a 1986 Chevrolet K30 crew cab dually, complete with 454 cu. in. V8 engine. The “K” means you get four-wheel-drive, and the “30” says it’s a one-ton. The truck is bid to $12,000, reserve met. It’s located in Puyallup, Washington, and it’s a fine representative of the C/K third-generation square body, with its straight flat lines and rectangular fascia. Several trim packages were available; this is the Silverado Camper Special. The Silverado trim level was the top of the line for ornamentation and comfort. Camper Specials included hardware and wiring for a slide-in camper over an eight-foot bed. Of course, to haul that horse trailer, you’ll need a hitch. But that’s about all this truck needs.

The 454 cu. in. V8 motor puts out 230 hp with its four-barrel carburetor. The truck has its original automatic transmission with the shift on the column; the four-wheel-drive selector is on the floor. The seller says it runs great, and with only 54,000 original miles, it should! Of course, we can’t avoid the obvious – this beast is not going to let you off easy at the gas pump.

There’s plenty of legroom in the cabin and it’s a four-seater! The upholstery is clean as can be, front and back, and the seller indicates the surfaces are original. I think that might be a CB radio there below the dash. The air conditioning compressor in the engine bay and the controls on the dash promise to beat the heat, though no word on whether the unit works. It is optioned with power windows and power door locks.

The underside looks great for its age, though there’s always room for improvement. Sounds like this seller took his truck to car shows, and it’s rare enough to see a nice one that it would be welcome at most multi-make shows. The paint is said to be original; there is slight oxidation on the truck’s roof. The bumpers and grille look sharp. Values for “good” condition trucks of this vintage are closer to mid-teens, making this one look like a bargain so far. Unlike many trucks we feature on Barn Finds, this one has low needs. Could you find a use for it in your shop?


  1. Avatar photo Perry Smittenaar

    It is actually a 6 seater. Bench front and back. They run forever. Friend of mine had one and it would haul anything for miles and it didn’t care about weather

    Like 3
  2. Avatar photo SirRaoulDuke

    A true old-school Cowboy Cadillac here.

    Like 6
  3. Avatar photo Camaro Joe

    The gas mileage may not be too bad if you retro fit it with late model fuel injection. I had a 98 Suburban K-20 454 with 4.11 gears that got 17 MPG going 68 MPH down the road. It went to 15 MPG towing a car trailer. That is IF you stayed below 68 MPH, anything faster dropped the mileage like a rock. Check the gearing in this truck. If it’s 4.11, you’re in trouble.

    I got in a race with an early 1990’s Corvette once, he got close but never ahead of me in 1/4 mile. But I moved the gas gage half a needle, I’m sure that was a few gallons at least. Not sure it was worth $5 at the time, now it would have been a $20 thing.

    Like 4
    • Avatar photo Dave

      LOL! Are you sure he knew you were “racing” him? A 90’s Corvette is a mid 12 second car, but good story Joe. These truck 454s haven’t got much HP, but they do have torque, and torque is what you tow with.

      Like 8
  4. Avatar photo Brad460 Member

    Hopefully this one is preserved and saved, and used only very lightly. I’ve had a few pickups in my collection over the years and they do draw lookers at shows.

    The downside is storage. Obviously these are very big vehicles and don’t fit on most storage hoists or storage units.

    Kudos to the owners for keeping it nice for the rest of us to enjoy.

    Like 2
  5. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    Ah, the “horsey” set, THERE’S a bottomless pit if I ever saw one. I had a friend that did that, almost did him in, financially. Not only do you need a behemoth like this and a trailer, you can’t have one horse, you need 2, a building and fenced area, all the gew-gaws, so you’ll be accepted( showing up at the country club riding day in a 30 year old truck,,tsk, tsk, for shame) and let’s do the math, 1300 miles at MAYBE 6 mpg, will cost you almost $900 bucks, again, just whip out the card. Anything that would require a vehicle like this, going to cost you all the way ’round, it’s vehicles like this, and the intended job they are SUPPOSED to do, surely separates us( me) from anyone that might use this.
    In a related “towing” deal, I saw a YouTube video on a new electric F-150, the guy wanted to point out how useless the electric is for towing. Oh, they make it seem, drive effortlessly for hours pulling a boat/camper, when in reality, this guy was pulling a Model A on a trailer, he thought something was wrong. It used all the juice in like 30 miles, so, something I’ve maintained all along, until you can equal the mighty 454 for Americans shenanigans,, it just won’t work.

    Like 10
  6. Avatar photo Jay E. Member

    Everything about the truck is true. People think you are exaggerating at only 6mpg, but I assure you that you will literally watch the needle move as you drive. And for all of that, they are gutless pigs. I just sold a running and driving blue/white one for 3K, and was glad to see it go. New tires alone were going to run $1600.00.
    As to the horse thing, there is a lot of exaggeration there. Horses can be done on a budget, perhaps $500.00 a month, (although with the cost of shoeing and hay going up, this is getting harder) or can be high end many multiples of that. However, you can use them every day or once a month and the cost stays about the same. The benefit of the horse is the lifestyle it brings, and for many it is worth the price. I can’t live without them.

    Like 6
    • Avatar photo Michelle Rand

      Regarding the horsey thing: I’m with you. I have four semi retired horses and one whippersnapper. Fortunately they do not go much of anywhere so I don’t even keep a trailer.

      Like 3
    • Avatar photo Howard A Member

      I don’t mean to rip on your hobby, but I’m a motorhead, never even been on a horse, and never care to. To me they are just big crap machines. The individual I’m referring to, lives in NY, and his EX-wifey canoodled with horsey folks east of the Hudson River, that live a bit different than us. Showing up in this would be a joke to them. I was sickened by their affluent lifestyle, but they don’t think anything is wrong. Having horses that just munch grass all day in a field, which I think is sort of cruel, is one thing, but it’s the transportation to the “trails” that gets costly. Lest I should mention any vet bills, which are in the stratosphere these days. No trailer means a “house call”, and that’s VERY costly. Pet operations ruined some people I know, and it’s a cost and hobby I can do without.

      Like 1
  7. Avatar photo Peter K

    can you say 9 mpg without the trailer and 6 mpg with a trailer? No the ks. I’ll stick with my 3500hd duramax 6 spd.

    Like 0
  8. Avatar photo geomechs Member

    We sold a pile of those back in the day. Still a lot of them on the road. I was with the wife in Great Falls a week ago at the Barrel Racing Finals and while most of the competitors had upgraded to Ford/Duramax/Cummins there were at least ten diehards almost identical to this. Interesting that one still bore the sticker from our old dealership…

    Like 5
    • Avatar photo Howard A Member

      “Barrel Racing Finals”? The fun never stops in Montana, eh? I should talk with the shenanigans that go on in this here state,,

      Like 1
      • Avatar photo geomechs Member

        437 girls and older women. Lots of estrogen in that arena. A woman, a quarter horse, and three barrels to race around. I sometimes feel sorry for those poor horses. You get some of those girls that barely break 100 lbs and they fairly well fly around the barrels. Then there’s the girls that should have been a little more determined to shut the fridge door; That poor horse is lugging over 200 lbs of hormonal overload and the girl can’t figure out why she can’t break 17 seconds…

        Like 0
  9. Avatar photo 433jeff

    This was it , until the diesel. I would bet of course its 4.11 gear, t 400, no electronics yet, Will get the job done , check the oil fill the gas,

    Love the squarebody.

    I got a longwood………….edition.

    Like 3

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