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Restoring my T100

consteelconsteel Member Posts: 2
edited August 2015 in Toyota
I have 1997 T100 SR5. It has been the greatest vehicle ever, however, in the last few years it has succumbed to insane rusting. The front end is ok but below the door frames and rear end are going fast. The engine and drivetrain have been maintained, new flywheel, wiring, brakes, interior is great, all power windows and A/C works, 4wd all good. There is just a lot of rust on the body and as far as I can tell underneath(I'm not sure how significant that is structurally.) 187,000 miles. It is still my most reliable vehicle in a pinch. I have two other main vehicles. I am considering restoring it with my 12 year old son for when he get to 16 but is this realistic?

Does anyone have any real advice for this? It would be a lot about the "project" itself but if at this point if it will be a money pit over a few grand it may be over. I know it has another 100K miles in it. It would need a new box and I'm not sure how to proceed with the cab rusting at door bottoms etc. PLEASE HELP!!!


  • MichaellMichaell Moderator Posts: 230,470
    So long as you realize that you'll never get your money back, no reason not to do this (IMO, however). Good project to work on with your son.

    I've called out for other opinions from folks with way more experience in this than I have.

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  • qbrozenqbrozen Member Posts: 32,415
    edited August 2015
    It is not worth the money and time, that's for sure.
    The frame is the key point. If that is OK, then you could always start searching junkyards for body parts and swap them on, but I would not put the money out for painting.

    I know they are tough to find, but the money is probably better spent on one that is in better shape. Here is one good example.

    Fairly steady: '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '13 Fiat 500c, '21 WRX, '20 S90 T6, '22 MB Sprinter 2500 4x4 diesel, '97 Suzuki R Wagon; '96 Opel Astra; '08 Maser QP / Rotating stock, but currently: '92 325i, '97 Alto Works, '11 Mini Cooper S

  • isellhondasisellhondas Member Posts: 20,342
    I agree. Trying to "restore" a high mileage rusted old car just isn't worth the effort in my opinion.
  • oldfarmer50oldfarmer50 Member Posts: 21,967
    Don't bother. Once cancer sets it you will be chasing it forever.

    2019 Kia Soul+, 2015 Mustang GT, 2004 Chevy Van, 2000 Chrysler Sebring convertible

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    Rust repair is the most difficult thing to accomplish on an old car, and often requires some fairly sophisticated skills and equipment. You'd be much better off finding a donor body and transferring all your good mechanicals to it. If the father/son restoration project appeals (and it's a great idea) I'd pick something that promises a less difficult road ahead. You'll have to take this truck completely apart, down to the bare frame, and dunk it chemically or media-blast it in your driveway.
  • consteelconsteel Member Posts: 2
    Yep thats what I thought. It was a heck of a vehicle I wish they still made them
  • sfboehm77sfboehm77 Member Posts: 1
    I have to tell you that I'm in the same "boat" as far as my desire to restore my 97 T100, which at 164,000, I believe is just getting broken in. Why?  Because I recently spoke with a Toyota guy who told me a story of a guy who surpassed a MILLION miles in his T100!  Now apparently he has replaced the engine twice, but I cat see why my engine can't be rebuilt if it would be substantially less cost.  Call me crazy but I'm under the delusion that we may be talking about ad good a truck as ever made, with the right maintenance and care.  Mine still runs like a top, and despite some front end issues is blessed with a still solid and generally clean body.  So don't give up on your gold mine.  I say go for the million.  Clearly I'm going to...
  • qbrozenqbrozen Member Posts: 32,415
    that million-mile vehicle, regardless of the mechanicals that needed to be replaced, did not collapse from rust. There are some things that can't be fixed within a reasonable and logical amount of money.

    Fairly steady: '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '13 Fiat 500c, '21 WRX, '20 S90 T6, '22 MB Sprinter 2500 4x4 diesel, '97 Suzuki R Wagon; '96 Opel Astra; '08 Maser QP / Rotating stock, but currently: '92 325i, '97 Alto Works, '11 Mini Cooper S

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