Reader Question: Worth Fixing Rusty Truck?

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Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!

Dana asks: I’ve read about your Nissan Frontier and I have one myself, which I love. The problem is it’s become rusty and the cost to repair the frame is not small. I am reluctant to get rid of the truck but the rust is getting to the point that it is affecting structural areas such as the suspension attachment points. Your thoughts appreciated!

My reply: I wish I had kept my Frontier. My other one. I still have an ’02. I sold the ’98 – because of rust. In my case, the radiator support had Swiss-cheesed and the bed had become holy – in the not-religious sense. At the time, I didn’t want to deal with it. At the time – this was about six years ago – I had no idea how bad things would get with regard to new cars (and trucks) and – hindsight – it would have been well worth my while (and money) to repair the rust.

Possibly for you, too.

Trucks like ours cannot be found new – and finding a good used one is hard. Because they’re such good trucks.

The key is finding someone who is competent to make the repairs – weld in new frame sections – and who will do the work for a reasonable fee. Another option is to scour salvage yards for a junked truck with a good frame and transfer your good body/mechanicals onto its frame. This is just grunt work; not technically difficult – just requires some manhandling.

I’d definitely give either option serious thought. I have already given serious thought to doing either thing to my ’02 when it becomes necessary.

Because I think it’s worth it!

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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