The Suburban’s Shakedown – and an Unexpected Find

This week’s post is a bit unusual in that it falls into a few different categories: part project update, part Explore Alberta, part hoarding. I mean collecting.

As you may have seen recently on Instagram, the Suburban came home from its second (and final) major round of work at Speedy, and it was barely given any time to rest before I then borrowed the keys and did another Edmonton-and-back day trip with it. It did have a brief outing a little earlier this year, but the few trips to and from my work (so we could get it on a hoist for some mechanical TLC) and a handful of little local gatherings were the only use it had seen since July of last year. Two days after it came out this time, I put almost exactly 750 kilometers on it in one go, and just cracked 1000 within a week. And it didn’t skip a beat.

Now the reason that this isn’t the proper, final update on the truck’s makeover is that it isn’t quite 100% complete yet, and I can’t take any photos of the finished product until it’s, well, finished. I still need to apply some pinstriping along the sides to replicate what it wore from the factory, refit the 1500 emblems on the front doors, and a couple of little pieces like the wiper arms and tow hooks could use some fresh paint while I’m at it. What you can see though is the impact that the brand new front bumper, grille, lights, and restored original wheels have had on the overall appearance of the truck.

But, on to the Edmonton trip. It was of course for car parts but there was a rather unexpected find which ended up making the trip much more interesting. The route to the first stop of the day took us right by it, so after picking up the first items (which required waiting for a pair of unbelievably long trains to pass by) we circled back and found the exit off the highway to take a closer look…

…at Little Lot.

Sharing this with friends, I found that some had heard of it before but others hadn’t. I obviously hadn’t, since I don’t live in Edmonton and had never even been to this specific part of the city before, so imagine my surprise when I was driving down the highway and saw this off to the side:

In essence, Little Lot is apparently a small dealership which happens to specialize in vintage cars so instead of a line of 2010s sedans and SUVs, you get these. This could be a very dangerous lot to walk through…

At the time of our visit Little Lot was closed so I did end up having to shoot all of the photos through the fence. As a result some of them are not fantastic quality, but I wasn’t alone – car after car was pulling in for a look and photos as well. This really was quite a special sight!

Of the vehicles there, two in particular stood out to me and really grabbed my attention. The first was this ’85 Nissan pickup – a 720 if I have my models correct. According to the sign it was built in ’95 and while it had a few small signs of age, looked to have held up phenomenally well over the years.

Keep your lift kits and offroad lighting – can we get some bodykits and lowering springs for the new Ranger, Mountune? It would be so much fun to cruise around in something like this!

My other favourite of Little Lot’s inventory – despite there being a 14,000-mile Firebird behind it – was this Fairlane. A work-in-progress (reportedly including the missing parts), it looked to have so much potential and was just begging to be purchased and finished up. Hopefully it goes to a good home!

I could have easily spent much more time poking around and checking out the cars, but there was still the matter of my house being a few hundred kilometers away from my present location, so it was time to get a move on and head to the next stops before ultimately hitting the highway.

A couple of those stops were simultaneously chances to see the local sights and grab a few more shots of the truck, admittedly. Anyway, eventually the trip was completed with the truck finally being parked for the night long after the sun had gone down. A hair under 750 kilometers in one day, probably about 750 bugs smashed across the front, and aside from some strong crosswinds pushing the brick-on-wheels back and forth a bit, it cruised just as smoothly as it ever had. However, you’re surely wondering what was in the back of it on that return trip, right?

For starters, this lot: five Turbomacs, three of which are usable on a car and one of which is still brand new in the box. The two extras – both of which are cracked – were freebies which are going to be used for some non-automotive applications while the other three were way too inexpensive to pass up. Five wheels (and a box of donuts from the Donut Mill) didn’t necessitate bringing the Suburban though, but the other items did. Whether or not they simply stay in the parts collection or wind up on the S15 (it wasn’t just Focus parts this time) has yet to be decided, but the chance to grab them was one I wasn’t going to turn down. I’ll share some photos in the next little while, but first I want the chance to do some test-fitting and mocking up so I have more to show when I do.

Pray to God of Bomex, I hope your speed over the rival.


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