Vote For Your Choice: Bronco Or Blazer Project?

We have two different red (ish) and white early SUV projects here, but they have some similarities as well. In corner number 1, we have the 1969 Ford Bronco project is listed for sale here on eBay with an opening bid of $3,000 and no reserve. It’s located in Baltimore, Maryland. The challenger, the 1971 Chevrolet Blazer K5 is listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding is up to $3,850 but hasn’t met the reserve yet, and it’s located in Monroe City, Missouri. Which one (if either) is going to come out on top with Barn Finds readers? Let’s find out!

Looking at the Bronco first, while it’s an uncut, original body, there’s rust. A lot of rust. Did I mention rust? As early Bronco enthusiasts know, these particular cars are well known for corrosion. However, it is relatively straight and does feature both the Sport and HD packages. The original wheels and hubcaps come with the car as well, although these wheels and tires in the pictures are said to be new.

They actually look like older factory Ford truck wheels to me. There’s also an Optima red battery included, and although the tailgate needs adjusting (!) the good thing is that you can get replacement metal for these vehicles.

On to the Blazer. I should point out that this is a two wheel drive version, so if you must have four wheel drive, you are probably going to lean towards the Ford. On the other hand, the Blazer looks a little more solid, despite it’s paint (red?  orange?) being more oxidized. The seller tells us that you’ll need to work on the rockers, rocker boxes, floors, quarter panels and doors. Maybe it just looks more solid to me? I guess if you have a rust hole, it really doesn’t matter that much how big it is, you still have to replace some metal.

You’ll also need to come up with a rear window from somewhere. The seller tells us that it’s been sitting since the 1980s and that they purchased it from the original owner.

Interiors are a toss out–I mean toss up. Well, I guess both terms fit. With metal dashes, padded tops that are tired and seats that are probably ripe for replacement (and quite possibly ripe-smelling), I think it comes down to brand preference here. However, if the transmission choice makes a difference to you, the Bronco is a 3-on-the-tree manual while the Blazer is an automatic.

We only have a picture of the Bronco engine, which is the dependable but unspectacular 170 cubic inch inline six. It doesn’t run, but we’re told the engine turns freely. The Blazer has an unspecified V8; we’ll assume it’s original, in which case it would either be a 307 or 350 cubic inch small-block. What I’m really interested in is which one of these finds would you prefer? Assume distance from you isn’t an issue. Please put your answer (and why you made that choice) in the comments and I’ll tally the votes in a few days!

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Comments

  1. Andre

    Blazer.. because I’m a GM guy.

    …But they both look like tetanus inducing heaps to me.

    Like 1
  2. Eric H

    The bronco easily gets my vote. Reproduction parts are more plentiful, and a 4×4 conversion on top of bodywork puts the Blazer out of contention.

    • jdjonesdr

      Tough call, but I agree. No 4 x 4 knocks the Blazer out of contention.

  3. Chris Kennedy

    Bronco. Much more basic design plus, they command more $$ in the open market.

  4. Alex

    I have to go Bronco because I own two Bronco and they the best looking around trucks

  5. pajones1972

    Bronco.

  6. Jay M

    Blazer.
    That CST 2wd is way more rare than any Bronco.

    Like 1
    • boxdin

      BINGO Jay M gets it. 2wd blazers are quite rare and valuable. 4wds are everywhere, don’t think of ruining a good 2wd to make a bastard 4wd.

      • Gary Member

        Blazer, and it has the somewhat rare console with split buckets. LMC Truck has anything needed to replace the rusted panels

  7. Todd Zuercher

    Bronco

    • half cab

      I’m with you Mr. Z. No Blazer here especially a 2×4.

  8. Mr. Bond

    Blazer. 2wd would suit me just fine.

  9. Nrg8

    Had both at one point or another and actually have 3 Broncos of this variety in about the same condition. I held on to the Broncos after they became too rusty only because the tubs are basically flat steel less the outer panels. I did one after Stacy David did one on his show. Repop flat steel at the time was cheap. Outer skin was starting to climb in cost. I did order both quarters, one door striker plate. Other metal I sourced at rural wreckers IE doors, fenders, gates, hoods, and grilles etc. From Broncos that bit it early in their life on one or more quarters. Aside from dings parts were rust free. The tub is a great platfom to hone welding skills, they are simple in construction and you can get at all of it on saw horses. The blazer tub well can start costing $ and time, more hidden areas just not alot of them left either. I would buy one of these with frameless windows again if I could. My top was never on in summer, just a canvas snap job that was winshield to behind driver. That fit in a ammo box when not in use. It did have extra floor plugs for when it got really wet. My hard top went on in winter and really looked about as good as this one, always cracked up like this one.
    In the end the tub got the point that if you had the top off and gate down you needed a few people to get the gate up cause the inner structure was all ate up. When the gate hinge mount broke off, it was sold. 6 cyl 3 speed made a great cruiser. Sad the tub was turning into another layer of repair after you opened it up and whole replacements were not around. Bronco is the way to go. But would buy another Blazer in a heartbeat if it was solid. Each has their own flavor.

  10. jw454

    The Blazer is my pick because of the 2WD. You can make a very nice hot rod cruiser out of one like that. Parts are plentiful and it’s easy to work on. I had a very nice 1971 35 years ago. It was a nice little truck.

  11. healeydays

    Bronco

  12. Den1Ho

    Here is one, if your interested. It’s for sale.

    • Jay M

      Damn!
      Is that a barn find or a picture of heaven?

    • Nrg8

      Where and how much?

      • DEN

        Pennsylvania. Make an offer. 814-386-1665. Thank you.

    • Albert Ortega

      How much?

  13. JW

    The Blazer is near me but being 2 wheel drive kills it, they are nice trucks but I only own 4x4s. The Bronco is crusty but worth saving but the 6 cyl. would have to go along with the 3 on the tree, in it’s place would be a 351W with a AOD because the wife hates manuals and she would have to help fund it.

  14. Robert R Buchanan

    I had a 71Bronco it was my first vehicle. I bought it in 1985 It had the 302 4speed . I had it 14 years till the body just got too bad to fix.
    I’d fixed quite a bit but to round it back into shape was almost 12k.
    I got 392 k out of her. Was the 2nD best vehicle I ever owned.
    So I would go bronco but that 6 sucks. If you are going for a drive go the v-8 after market

  15. Capt. Shindig

    Bronco all the way! 4WD, manual shift, easy to work on & parts readily available.
    Yoke the 6 and drop in a fresh 5.0 Coyote with a T-5 and then rework the suspension, upgrade the brake system and you’re off to the races! Paint her up in the original color scheme with a fresh interior and you won’t lose your $.
    The Chevy is a looser- who wants a 2WD tank with a slush box in such poor condition? That thing should have been scrapped long ago, not very desirable imho…

  16. JamestownMike

    I was going to vote NEITHER, both too rusty and rough…….UNTIL I found out the Blazer was a 2wd! Talk about ULTRA RARE! I don’t think I’ve EVER seen a first gen 2wd Blazer before!

  17. 68 custom

    the 2wd CST Blazer would make a killer street rod slammed a little with a 6.0 Ls and automatic overdrive plus if you could build it for say 20k you could sell at a profit. the early ones with the full removable roof are great.

  18. Joe Haska

    BLAZER ! Two wheel drive is rare, they are way cool, when slammed and done right.

  19. Henry T

    Blazer, it’s more appealing to me. I’m not knocking the Bronco, I’d hammer on it as well.

  20. vadimivanovich

    The Blazer is really a better truck to own, drive, wheel, etc. I’d want a 4×4 conversion done, which is really just a transfer case, front axle, and drive shafts – not too painful.
    The Bronco is a better investment I think. But I’d buy the Blazer in the blink of an eye – I still miss mine.

    • half cab

      Ha…ever converted a 2 wheel to 4?

      My ole pappy n I did once and it’s lot easier said then done.

  21. Jim

    Blazer wins every time as a two wheel drive. I built this one from a body in the desert.

    • Jay M

      That is amazing! Nice work…

  22. slickb

    Blazer all day every day.
    … I just find then easier to work on but I would take both… if i could

  23. Tim

    Blazer every time. 2 wheel drive is not a factor. Lifted, restored, or custom street truck the Blazer can do it all. Convert it to a 4×4 or drop it to the ground. It is versatile, just like the day it rolled of the assembly line.

  24. Blaine

    Bronco…… 😊

  25. ROTAG999

    Blazer may be in better shape and i am a BowTie Guy,Blue Oval looks to be more work & rusty plus motor and trans needs upgrade to V-8.

  26. George

    The blazer would try the low and slow look

  27. Cole

    Bronco for sure. I would ditch the 6 cylinder for a 289, but keep the 3 on the tree. The rust would definitely need to be addressed, but it is well worth it.

  28. David Miraglia

    Bronco, my brother Mike had one of the massive 1980’s ones back then. They were solid as a rock. So I say Bronco

  29. Peter K

    Bronco for the 4×4, Blazer as a 2 WD for lighter dirt roads. The FORD will cost more to do as they always do.

  30. Wrong Way

    As a real Ford finnatic! Bronco of course!

  31. Michael

    I am a GM guy, more specifically a Pontiac guy. That being said, the Bronco is more stylish and I would go for it. The Blazer is cool, but not as cool as the Bronco.

  32. Jay M

    The SPI tells the story…

  33. Born2bhated

    The blazer hands Down an plus I own 1

  34. Dj

    Blazer all day.

  35. P Wentzell

    Bronco. My parents were ‘thisclose’ to getting a ’66 Bronco but went with the Falcon instead. The Falcon was mine after a while – so I know about the 170 c.i.d. 6 and 3 on the tree. The Bronco for what might have been!

  36. DEN

    Want a,bronco, have one for sale !

    • half cab

      How much n where are you located.?

  37. Windy

    Bronco!

  38. Ken Mitchell

    If I got it for trail riding, definitely Bronco! Smaller outer dimensions can get through tighter spots on the trail. For street cruising, the Blazer would be cool. But no 4wd counts against it in overall points. Blazer & Broncos are supposed to be 4wd. Just like Jeeps.
    Bronco, by a few points.

  39. Paul

    Bronco for sure. Love the first gen Blazer but much prefer the Bronco’s lines and, when it comes to vintage SUV’s, it’s gotta be 4×4.

  40. David J David J

    While I’m a fan of the 67-72 Chevy truck period, I’m thinking the 1969 Bronco is a better value between these rusty, neglected survivors.

    Pick your poison. I’ll go with with the Bronco.

  41. craig sibert Member

    Unless you own a body shop the bronco is out i would take forever to fix nix the 6 and the 3 tree you would be way better off in the rare 2 wheel drive blazer when it came time to sell you would recoup all your money and then some after all the fun

  42. Norm

    Bronco. I love them!

  43. Mike F.

    Kind of apples and oranges. Bronco’s aren’t too good on the highway, 2×4 Blazers aren’t too good crawling through the woods.

  44. Jason

    Tough call, even for being a GM guy. Have 3 CUCV’s, great trucks. If going to do a 4×4 build/restore, id go Bronco. See them a lot less then Blazers. If 2wd build, then go Blazer. They are rare in that form. Duramax/cummins swap turned up with a 6spd. Take the roof off and kill the street competion rice burners in power & coal. Lol. Also you automatic guys, autos are for women

  45. Paul

    I know both trucks very well. All you have to do is drive them both and you will know the blazer hands down is a much better vehicle, rides better handles better has more power and is just a more comfortable truck. The blazer also had a little better build quality for the day then the bronco. The Bronco eventually caught up in 78 to the blazer. Although the Bronco has that cool off road desert factor, so if you don’t care about ride just want to drive off road and costomize you may go for the Bronco. Both trucks are very easy to get parts for! I would be happy with either one.

  46. Travis

    Blazer, laying frame on air, all day.

  47. Todd A Wimett

    Bronco. A pic of my 1970

  48. chad

    “…Each has their own flavor….”
    and
    “…apples to oranges…”
    comments fit 4 me even tho a ford man & bronk owner of 35 yrs.

    Like all automotive Qs: it’s a Q of APPLICATION. Otherwise it’s abt Ford v Chevy. Luv the look of a fully restored 1st gen blazer from above & behind w/the top off. That clean classy dash, all that carpet, the upholstery on the rear bench seat… & as 2WD I’d like it for what many USE their 1st gen bronk – mall crawl and very light duty off rd (don’t even need 4WD 4 dat).

    The bronk stays as a wkly off rd work ‘truck’ / income producer even w/3 speed & 6 cyl.

  49. MRE2ME

    Would have said Bronco until I saw that cool Convertible Blazer HMMM very tasty.

  50. Jamie Palmer Jamie Palmer Staff

    Update as I promised:

    BF comments results: Bronco takes a narrow win, 24 to 22.

    Facebook BF page results: Bronco in a landslide, 21 to 5.

    Looks like the blue oval wins this particular battle! Thank you for supporting this format — if I find another “choice” battle to write up, I’ll be sure to do so!

    • JohnT

      Please add my vote to the tally for the Ford Bronco … The straight-6 with the three-on-the-tree seals the deal for me.

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