He Bought a Truck for Little More Than What a Tank of Gas Might Cost Today — 38 Years Later, It’s Running Fine
$75 goes a long way! When Bob Sportel spent $75 on a Chevrolet pickup, he had no idea it would still be trucking along just fine 38 years later.
When Bob Sportel spent $75 on a Chevrolet pickup, he had no idea it would still be trucking along just fine 38 years later.
Sportel drove the 58-year-old truck to his job at Prinsburg Farmers Co-op in Prinsburg, Minnesota, for nearly four decades before he finally retired this week. He bought it from a farmer whose asking price at the time was $75. Sportel, then in his 20s, tried to negotiate and only pay $50 but the farmer refused the lower offer, KARE-TV reported.
So paying the full asking price of $75, Sportel drove the 1957 truck off the farm not even knowing for sure how many miles it had on it since the odometer was broken.
“If I could get four years out of it, I thought I’d be really happy,” Sportel said.
Today, he estimates he’s put about 300,000 more miles on it by driving it to work across town and back each day. Sportel hasn’t even stored it in a garage during the bitter cold Minnesota winters and he’s never worried about repainting it.
Sure, the truck doesn’t have a radio, the bottom is rusted, the seats have a few layers of duct tape on them and putty is about the only thing holding the headlights in, but after all these years, the pickup still runs just fine.
So what’s the secret to keeping the truck running nearly six decades after it came off the assembly line? Sportel said he changes the oil in it four times per year. As far as repairs go, he estimated those have cost him around $1,000 since he bought the truck.
Post-retirement, Sportel just can’t bring himself to part ways with the truck he’s spent so much time in traveling to and from the co-op.
“It just becomes a part of you. I don’t know how to explain it,” Sportel said.
But should he ever decide to pay a visit to his colleagues, they’re sure to remember him by the truck.
“Everybody knows Bob’s around. We all get out of the way,” Sportel’s coworker, Phil Breems, said.
This highlights the poor quality of our products produced today. It seems many products that we rely on are made to only last a few months or years. Although this truck might not be the most visually appealing, it still runs and gets the job done. If we all kept our products for the full life, I feel that we would find that our products last a lot longer then we think.