Salvage Yards

In search of hidden treasure

December 2014 Feature Roy Sparks

Last weekend a big thud hit my front porch that had me running for the door to see what all of the commotion was. Turns out it was just another useless phonebook that was being delivered to my doorstep by a local company. I can remember a few years back when getting a new phone book was a big deal. It was full of the latest information and it was treated as royalty and given its own drawer by the phone or in some cases a prime position on the counter. Today, well, not so much.

Everything we need can be researched and located online through our computers, iPads, Smartphones, etc. Who has time to flip through a phonebook? And besides, it only includes local information, while the Internet is worldwide.   

So what do you do when you’re on the hunt for some miscellaneous parts for your diesel truck? Getting on the computer and finding an aftermarket distributor is one option, and frankly it’s a good one—especially when you’re looking for those hard-to-find parts. However, before you get online to do your searching, have you considered checking with you local scrap yards first? For those who think these yards are just for finding wiper blades, antennas and mirrors, think again.

There are scrap yards all over the country with hidden treasure just waiting to be discovered. And to back up this claim, we took to our Facebook page and asked our followers what was the best thing they ever scored from a scrap yard for their diesel truck. The responses were even better than we anticipated.

Justin Dailey reported that he picked up an entire 7.3L Power Stroke engine with just over 122K miles on it and for just $900 it also included the turbo. Speaking of turbos, Skyler Nelson posted that he picked up a turbo from his local scrap yard for his LB7 with less then 100,000 miles on it. The cost plus installment came in around $1,000, which is a hard deal to beat when you’re only searching online. 

If you’re willing to go hunt through miles of broken-down vehicles, there are plenty of great deals to be found. 

“My little brother has a 1988 7.3L that he’s doing a five-speed conversion on and he found everything online that he needed except the petal assembly and master cylinder, which brand new run around $250 to $300,” posted Josh Israel. “I got him the pedal assembly and master cylinder for $25 bucks at a scrap yard!”

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