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Short Bed Project: 1978 GMC Sierra

While trucks are utilitarian by nature, many enthusiasts enjoy trucks with standard cabs and short beds to make into cruisers. This 1978 GMC Sierra that Barn Finds reader local_sheriff found here on eBay needs some love, but it is a running and driving project with plenty of potential.

This GMC is available in Gilbert, Arizona with a clean title. While it is a running and driving vehicle, the seller no longer has time for it, and mentions “this truck is ideal for anyone who is looking for a project to work on with your kids.”

Except for the bed, the body of this Sierra is mostly rust-free, with the seller mentioning how the bed needs replacement. The rear driver’s taillight has some damage, while the front and rear bumpers are missing, but the sale includes all of original trim for the truck, as well as a headlight and grille setup.

Inside the cabin, things are rough – the carpet and door panels are missing, while the bench seat is best destined for a dumpster at this point. Replacement parts for these trucks aren’t too hard to find, but there’s no denying that the interior of this Sierra needs serious attention.

Under the hood, there’s a 250 cu.-in. inline 6-cylinder engine, which pairs to a column-shifted 3-speed manual transmission. The advertisement states that the truck has traveled 230,000 miles during its lifetime.

The Buy it Now price for this GMC is $3,000, though the seller invites serious buyers to reach out for “more details and to talk numbers.” Would you take on this project Sierra?


  1. Keith

    Definitely well used…..

    Like 3
  2. LARRY

    I’d use it a lot more..that 250 is a work horse..seriously though is everyone selling their c series trucks today jeeezz

    Like 3
  3. Rosco

    No way in this condition this is even close to being a $3000 truck.

    Like 6
  4. Rube Goldberg Member

    Keep ’em coming, BF’s, just adds fodder for my cause, seeing a POS like this for $3g’s. I may be close to selling mine, this makes mine look like a Cadillac, and I’d feel guilty asking any more than $2 or $3g’s. Maybe I should cast my scruples to the wind, and ask $5g’s for mine, or $10, why not,,nah, I feel, people that gouge others for sheer profit are destined for Hades. $500 truck, max, theres a square body short box near me, 4 WHEEL DRIVE, in about the same condition, maybe better, the guy wants $1,000 bucks, and nobody wants it. These crooks better lower their sites a bit.

    Like 7
    • Steve R

      What exactly is it that makes the seller a crook for asking more for their truck than you think it’s worth?

      Steve R

      Like 3
      • Rube Goldberg Member

        We’ve locked horns on this once before. Selling a vehicle that clearly is too much money, and trying to cash in on the latest fad. I got a deal on mine, and I’m going to pass that deal on to someone else, not gouge the heck out of them. I wasn’t raised that way. Yeah, I’d make a lousy flipper. You want to spend 3 grand on a $500 tops truck, go right ahead. Tell you what, I’ll sell you mine for $7 grand, knowing I paid $1,400 for it. Not so nice now, eh?

        Like 4
      • Steve R

        So what makes him a crook? Asking too much money, in your opinion? What I’m opposed to is people using their own subjective biases to paint someone else in such a highly negative light. I doubt you’d call them that in person, but all’s fair when it’s online.

        Steve R

        Like 4
      • Rube Goldberg Member

        1st of all, I wouldn’t even look at it, and 2nd, I sure would call them a crook to their face. My old man taught me that and he never went “online”.

        Like 0
  5. Stevieg

    Hey Rube, to a point I agree with you. But your truck sounds like a nice truck, so if I were your friend, I would want you to get fair value out of your truck.
    I have no problem with people making money off me, as long as I believe I am getting a fair, reasonable deal.
    I applaud your ethics, but a deal that is fair for all is the best deal. When you do eventually sell your truck, I hope you make a good chunk of change on it, and I hope all parties are happy with the deal.
    As for this here truck, I would pay $3,000 for it. Can’t find one this solid here in Milwaukee. Soft parts can be replaced.
    I can’t wait for my big move to Arizona! Easier access to these solid vehicles. Started fixing up the house to sell but got into a minor legal mess. Might take a year or 2 to straighten that up. Too bad about my stupidity…I already started the process for this relocation. Anyone want a 1951 Pontiac convertible lol?

    Like 2
    • Rube Goldberg Member

      Hi Stevieg, thanks, I’m from Milwaukee too, I apologize for using the word crook, I believe this Steve^, must be a flipper himself, so takes it personally and there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s what the world has become. I really have no business being in this hobby anymore, more like a business today, and my negativity ( and income level) is way out of line. Good luck on the move, I still have family in Milwaukee, it really is a tough place to live. Milwaukee used to be the king, but they all moved out here, and I can’t blame them, I did and I’d never go back.

      Like 0
    • On and On On and On Member

      In response to a 1951 Pontiac. I would. And I have vintage motorcycles to trade. Any details to share?

      Like 1
  6. local_sheriff

    It looks like s**t, but seller obviously understands that. That means the BIN is only a starting point for negotiations.
    Only two reasons I submitted it are it seems rust free and is a short bed. If I where to build a c10 street truck I’d look for something like this; a completely worn out stripper but with non-rotted out bed and cab. Then start off with new parts instead of paying more to buy a slightly better example with so-so 45year old bits.
    Anyway, this example should turn any prospective owner into one of LMC’s favorite customers

    Like 4
  7. Stevieg

    Rube, I will occasionally flip a car (generally nothing vintage…I put too much into them to ever make a profit lol) and I didn’t take it personally. I was recently arrested for a d.u.i. & needed some extra funds for an attorney. I had picked up (prior to the arrest) a newer Chevy truck with the z71 package, very little rust, ran & drove well. Bought it from a family friend for $2,500. Wanted to keep it for hauling my bike to Arizona because the plan was to sell the house early next year & I knew there would be snow on the ground. Well, then Stevieg was a moron & got arrested! Sold the truck for $5,000 to pay for an attorney because of my stupidity. By then I realized that I should have measured before I bought, because the bike wasn’t going to fit anyhow lol.
    You are so right about Milwaukee. It has become a real city of scum. I can’t wait to get out west. Ride the bike year around, play with 4 wheeled toys that aren’t corroded, and never shovel snow again. Too bad Stevieg is a moron & will have to pay the price for indiscretions first lol.
    Maybe you can keep your truck until I finish paying my dues. If reliable, it very well could be a great truck for moving me to Arizona. You seem like a decent guy & I would like to shake your hand, whether I am buying a truck or not.

    Like 2

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