It’s a common fantasy to grab a beater out of a junkyard and turn it into a patina build you can use on the street, but not everybody has the resources to pull such a stunt off. Well, a TV show crew dedicated to this kind of projects sounds like a perfect recipe to rescue a slab of America and we’re here to talk about a 1977 Chevy C30 tow truck that got revived by PowerNation’s Carcass crew.
Led by the two hosts, Jeremy Weckman and Jimmy King, Carcass team is getting ready for the 2022 season and, meanwhile, they’re taking the juiciest bits of their 2021 work to YouTube, with this Square Body Chevy standing out thanks to its workhorse aura.
This RWD truck has spent decades helping other cars, but, after ending up in a junkyard, the time has come for the Chevy to receive attention. And we don’t even want to know how many hours of mechanical work and filming went into creating the story of the rescue, which is delivered here via a clip that’s almost an hour and a half long.
The ’77 C30 came with a 305 V8, which the guys had the ambition to start right in the junkyard, but not until they fitted a new battery and carburetor. Having hit their mark, the boys… decided to replace the engine with a more potent one that would be in better condition, pulling a 350 V8 out of Frankenregal, one of their previous builds.
It’s not complicated (just the plan, though)
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, since we have to discuss the plan for the project, which is illustrated at the 12:50 timestamp. The idea was to bring this Chevrolet back to the road, making it safe and comfortable to drive, albeit without any unnecessary goodies.
So, before the engine could be replaced, the team needed to remove the bed and towing assembly, all to get to the rusty chassis—just like in a driver’s worst nightmare, iron oxide had gotten the best of the structure, so the boys built a new back half for the chassis, which naturally took plenty of measuring and fabrication.
While they were at it, Jeremy and Jimmy also threw in some new leaf springs, while using as many of the original bits as possible (e.g., they made new rear mounts for the springs, but the front ones stayed original).
Since we mentioned motivation, we should tell you that the said Chevy small-block, which received a few custom pieces like the exhaust headers, was mated to a 700R4 4-speed automatic.
Advice for amateur builders
The front end of the vehicle needed more work, though. For one, the steering had to be replaced (and so did the fuel tank). As per their usual MO, the guys deliver a few words of advice to amateur builders attempting to undertake such projects and you’ll find a precious mention on taking apart the steering at the 49:20 point.
Fresh Bilstein shocks were installed, while the sway bar also had to be replaced, but the good old steelies were just fine after being stripped and repainted, with new tires being a given.
Dealing with the cabin meant going from the bottom up, so the floorboards and the rocker panels are now made of fresh metal. As for the interior itself, the new goodies include the dash pad, instrument bezel, gauges, door seals, as well as the steering wheel.
The final pieces involved putting a new winch in—don’t worry, the retro levers are still in place—and taking care of the bed, which had been cut in order to be removed, as the previous builders had welded this to the chassis while slightly shortening the latter.
The boys obviously took the 1977 Chevy C30 out on the road (around their shop in Franklin, TN) and even pulled a towing stunt to show the truck is once again ready to serve those in need. And while this restoration took quite a bit of elbow grease, the result seems to be totally worth it and we can only hope more lost Chevys get a new lease on life this way.