I love Craigslist and eBay finds, though I try not to run them too often. Still, I decided I’d try something new and challenge myself to find something interesting locally (it is the hip thing these days, don’tcha know) and it didn’t take long to find this gorgeous ’87 F-250. It even seems Paul friendly, being a Ford with a vinyl floor, five-speed and straight-six.
The 1992 facelift versions never appealed to me as much as these, and while I prefer the ’79-’86 originals, this is quite the attractive beast. It’s worth the $7,000 asking price (update: listing taken down) and is what a truck should be, built for a high payload, no more than three passengers, with no goal of high performance. In other words, there’s no glamor here at all, but if you want to rip apart an entire house and carry it all to a landfill (or wherever else such trash could be taken), a six-cylinder 3/4-ton pickup is frugal way to get it done.
This was a much better interior than those which followed in ’92 and later, ’96; those designs had a real Rubbermaid feel about them. Despite the austerity on display here, there is full instrumentation, another nod to this truck’s functionality. Also note the tuning knob on the original stereo (underneath the steering wheel’s spoke). I’ve never minded a heavy or long-throw shifter if it’s got solid action, and as this sits right above the transmission, it’s probably pretty positive. So even sans V8, this would make a fun daily, even though it really should just be preserved. This isn’t the sort of vehicle usually kept as a collector’s item and in that sense, it’s unique among barn finds. Speaking of which, with the changing nature of agriculture in the US over the past thirty years, what’s the future hold for barn finds? Will there be many ’80s barn finds in coming years?
I prefer my full-size trucks with a bowtie as they’re a bit less rustic, but for this Paoli, Indiana native, style was a secondary consideration. Equipped as it is with nothing extra but four-wheel drive and maybe a/c and a radio, someone bought this to get stuff done, which makes its pristine state all the more unusual. Normally, these get worked so hard that they’re haggard-looking after only a few years. It has 70,000 miles on it, so it got a good amount of use before being put away, but it must’ve been somebody’s pride and joy at a certain point.
Here’s the view of these trucks with which I’m most familiar. There’s great country road driving in the midwest, but also a lot of slow moving larger vehicles which you cannot see around. At least these gave me some nice straight lines to look at while getting pebbles thrown at my windshield, unlike the ovoid-influenced, rust-prone 1996 model and its ‘roided-out successor. Don’t get me started.
What can you find in your own local listings? Anything interesting, classic and cheap? Or are you forced to look far outside your local area?