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Blazer Body Swap...?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by 78k5cheyenne, May 24, 2004.

  1. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    Hi, I'm new to this forum and I need a little input on a project I'm doing. I bought a 78 K5 Blazer loaded with everything and has 122K miles. Outer body isn't too bad, but the structural areas are being eaten away by cancer. The frame itself is very clean with no cracks by the steering box or anything. I just bought a 79 Blazer from CA with a rust free body that Id like to use as a donor for my 78. My question is if I do this, does the truck become a 79, or can I retain the 78 VIN? I thought with trucks the VIN is registered by frame. I know the 79 has a gas door and would be wrong for 78, but my truck does have an all original drivetrain right down to the 400 engine. Plus my 78 is a HD emissions truck with zilch for pollution controls, where as the 79 would have the whole gamut of doodads including a catalytic. I asked the DMV here in WI about it and they said to send in the title to both vehicles so they could be combined...yeah riiiiight. Secondly they said it has to be the year it appears to be coming down the road....well 78 and 79 are almost twins to the average Joe anyhow. Please help and thanks much, Id like to save her. /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif
     
  2. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    Here in oregon, we did the very same thing(different yrs tho)to my dads burb(pics of the swap can be viewed in my webshots, link is in my sig). 77 burb and a 81 burb. The way it sits now is his burb has a 77 drivetrain and the 81 body, even the 81 front clip(and as you know the 81 is WAY different looking than a 77)anyways, the burb is registered through the DMV as a 1977 burb. Every state may be different, but here in oregon, vehicles retain the frame VIN. We did have to turn in both titles though and was issued a new title /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  3. gm guy

    gm guy 1/2 ton status

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    I am starting a body switch on my Blazer that will be a confusing combo. It will be powered by a Buick or Chevy motor. My second generation blazer has a good frame and a basketcase body. I am rebuilding the motor, puting on 87 Dakota cab, and a 70's chevy step box. This truck will be a mut, Ha Ha. /forums/images/graemlins/histerical.gif
     
  4. gm guy

    gm guy 1/2 ton status

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    Maybe this truck should be a cammo mut! /forums/images/graemlins/peace.gif
     
  5. gravdigr

    gravdigr 1/2 ton status

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    Wait...so if I put a frame from say a 1975 k5 under my 86, if it would even fit, that would mean my blazer would be titles as a 1975? hmmm.
     
  6. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    yup according to what the DMV just told me thats true. My question is then what the heck good is the body VIN then? Like I told them, sounds like Id have a lot of needless explaining to do to a peace officer. In my case, I told them I may as well just put the 78 tag on the 79 body and circumvent the BS, they look identical anyhow. Besides the 79 VIN is moot, all I can figure is that its just another way for your local govt to get into your pocket. Its hard enough affording to run these trucks let alone give blood money to the state govt "just because". Heres a point to ponder....if I replace the drivers side bedside panel with a complete one, Id have to reattach the VIN anyhow, right? So whats the diff??? Sounds like govt red tape to me. /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif
     
  7. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    I did some looking at my dads title of the burb we did the swap on, and it states right on it "Reconstructed" which is all the police need to see as to the difference in year and looks.
     
  8. surpip

    surpip 1 ton status

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    i would just swap it over and surrender the title for your other blazer to the dmv, tell thme you tottaled it and you are selling it for scrap, im gonna do a 73to a89 swap that way too much crap too deal with ill just do it the easy way /forums/images/graemlins/grind.gif /forums/images/graemlins/hack.gif
     
  9. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    Yeah I can understand why it would be necessary with an 81 body on a 77...big diff in appearance. But as most are aware, 76-80 are identical sans a few styling details, and in my case its 78 and 79. Interestingly enough now the DMV won't answer me back after I asked since they use the frame VIN then why not just attach the proper body VIN and be done with it. /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif The two are twins so whats da biggie? For all the trouble this is, maybe it wasn't worth it. Sad but just maybe. /forums/images/graemlins/doah.gif
     
  10. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    Hmmmmmmmmmm...not a bad idea, only hard part is I'll still have the rust free K5 frame I was going to keep as a spare. Here in the rust belt its a good thing to have laying around. Good idea though, will keep it in mind. I guess the bottom line is who is really gonna know anyhow? Just me and the truck the way I see it. /forums/images/graemlins/waytogo.gif
     
  11. surpip

    surpip 1 ton status

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    that is fin keep it still i am just turning in the vin so it has no way to come back and bite me...
     
  12. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    Which title should I surrender, the one for the 79? That would be best because my drivetrain is 78 and has 78 emissions on it.
     
  13. dhdescender

    dhdescender 1/2 ton status

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    I originally bought a 1987 rust bucket K5, then stumbled upon a Good rust free 1976 body that had a bad title (it had been rolled, the roof was flat as a pancake...we did a 'lil fabbing /forums/images/graemlins/grind.gif /forums/images/graemlins/weld.gif), I drilled out the VIN rivets from the '78, and pop riveted them onto the '76 body...viola. You'd have to have a pretty keen eye to notice the slight changes in the flooring, to notice wha year it truly is. To muddle things further, I swapped on an '86 front clip! /forums/images/graemlins/waytogo.gif
     
  14. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    Thank you, my point exactly, unless you run into someone who really knows this stuff who would really know the difference, and in rustville, really care? If youre selling it and tell them you rebodied it, they'd probably thank you profusely around here.. /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif I think thats the way I'm going to go, just swap them, and swap in a gas hole on the pass side rear in place of the door down the road. Yeah it isnt the true legal way of doing it, so they say, but if you bought a body from a yard you wouldnt get a title with it anyhow, usually anyway. I recabbed a 71 pickup with a 70 cab and didnt think twice about using my 71 VIN tag, cause I didnt get a title with the cab. Thanks and sssshhhhhhh /forums/images/graemlins/whistling.gif
     
  15. surpip

    surpip 1 ton status

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    you dont have to surrender it but youll have to put it on a non op status and also if someone getts ahold of that title youll be in deep dudu ifthey request a duplicate title, also if somone else build a rig off that titl and they crash and di the family can sue you, at least thats the way it is in cali, with all our f'ed up laws /forums/images/graemlins/dunno.gif
     
  16. 78k5cheyenne

    78k5cheyenne Registered Member

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    oh ok, sounds kool. I was only going to title the 79, not register it for use. Here you can get just the title without having to pay registration if you want. So in essence I will own both trucks, just borrowing from Peter to pay Paul so to speak. The unused body will be cut up and scrapped, which will leave me with a 78 Blazer with a spare 79 frame, and titles to both. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif
     
  17. camiswelding

    camiswelding 1/2 ton status

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    Looking at vins for 25 years from the perspective of tan and green I would say if you are very careful you wont get caught...
    do understand some ways that might bite you are..
    1)experienced peace officer easily spots fake gm rivets... we are trained to looked for "funny" rivits, handmade etc...
    2) numbers dont match... but what copper wants to get under a greasy k5 to look at the frame or run "other" numbers... sorry I wont tell you what or where those are and yes there are other numbers other than the motor etc
    3) what circumtances brought you/your vehicle to the attention of someone who cares....
    was it crashed in a serious accident?
    was it used in a crime?
    did you do something really stupid?
    I remember throwing parking tickets on cars in west hollywood taking cold plated stolens left and right because I happened to look carefully at vehicle numbers... and became good at spotting grey market fakes.... and because I always had a keen interest in 4 x 4's I would look them over real careful.... it would start out just as personal.. well sort of caus I was in uniform but would go to progress to professional real quick when something didnt look right...like body years and parts not adding up
    Now all this being said Im going to do an old track cab swap onto a later frame and register it as the old truck.... but youll have to figure out how Im going to do that and not get in a jam......

    cam
     
  18. 1979jimmy350

    1979jimmy350 1/2 ton status

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    is there special paint on the rivits so that you can not use them over again. or would it be better to just weld in a large section of dash with the Vin from the old body on it?
     
  19. gm guy

    gm guy 1/2 ton status

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    I live in Canada, so I will have to do my own reasearch. I think they should have a booklet of the rules. I know most people doing this are not trying to scam anyone, we just need to do our homework then it will be OK. /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif
     
  20. kennyw

    kennyw N9PHW Premium Member

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    If you swap the VIN tag and you have the title to both trucks I wouldnt feel bad about anything. Just keep the extra title filed away somewhere after you junk the rusty body incase anything ever did come up so that you can prove what you did if needed (Just a rust repair patch panel right /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif )
     

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