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72 lift questions... Please help me on my first post!

Discussion in '1969-1972 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by mr_blasto, Nov 8, 2004.

  1. mr_blasto

    mr_blasto 1/2 ton status

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    I am totally new at this and I apologize for the long post. I have been doing searches and manually sifting through various forums, but I haven't found exactly what I am looking for. I just bought a '72 /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif during the last year. The owner before me had it for 31 years and kept it totally stock. I got sick of looking at those silly wheels and tires, so I bought some 15X10's and some BFG All-Terrain 35x12.5x15. Now, clearly I need a lift.

    I have been wrestling with this for a while, and I think I have it figured out, but I am looking for some advice/feedback/opinions. The car is not my daily driver, but it may be soon as my dd is dying. I live in LA so most of my driving will be on-road so I am looking for a lot of comfort. I will be making a few trips to Aspen, Co this winter (I am a ski instructor) so it has to be very capable in the snow. Next year I will be going to school in UT again, and with Moab not too far away, I want to be able to have a very capable/fun off-roader. I am a little hesitant to cut the fenders cause it is an original K5 in better than decent shape, and all the fender triming I've seen has been pretty noticeable. As stated the car is almost totally stock, no winch, tube bumpers, or other heavy stuff. I don't do any towing. Budget is a huge concern.

    I was thinking about just doing a 4" lift cause I like the idea of the whole low CoG thing. I also like that a 4" spring should ride a lot more comfortabley than larger springs, right? Would it be a crime to cut the fenders? I want to maintain the not-at-all-purpose-built-look. As I said I am on a budget, but in two years if I decide I want biger tires, and I have already trimmed the fenders, am I going to have to buy a lift all over again?

    If I went with a 6" that would be great except for a harsher ride and higher center of gravity, but I could go with a bigger tire size down the road if I decide to go that route, and I wouldn't have to trim the fenders for the time being.

    My solution:
    -TCI 4" EZ ride lift with blocks $276
    -ORD 1" body lift $70
    -Minimal fender trimming if any

    As I get more $$$, ditch the blocks and:
    -ORD rear shackle flip $160
    -Tuff Country EZ ride rear 2" springs $350 (I gather that this is the set-up to level it all out /forums/images/graemlins/dunno.gif)

    What do you guys think? Am I making a bigger deal of this than it is? Anyone "been down that road"? Is there a simple solution? Are the differences between the 4" and 6" lift negligible pertaining to CoG and comfort? Please feel free to offer suggestions. Thanks in advance
     
  2. rubbinz raczn

    rubbinz raczn 1/2 ton status

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    did the same as you are thinking.i have a lwb truck though. i used 4" hd tuffcountry front springs 4" rear. with a 1" body lift. 35x12.5 tires. looked good sat right. i was running a 454 so front sat lower than i wanted. tires would rub on big bumps. i have since upgraded to 6" with 1" zero rates no rub! you will probably be fine 4" with smallblock if you don't push it too hard!
     
  3. Yukon Jack

    Yukon Jack 1/2 ton status

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    I can't blame you for not wanting to trim up on a better than normal K5 - I wouldn't either. I would say go with the 4" lift and a 1" body lift - you ought to be fine. I would go with Tuff Country as a good all around lift at a good price. You're thinking this through well, 4" front springs with blocks for the rear then switch to a shackle flip or new springs later on. That makes alot of sense.

    Also, remember all that can come off to take you back to your stock vehicle.

    Oh, and welcome to the 69 - 72 K5 world!
     
  4. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    The plan looks good.....right up until the "I want a capable offroad rig for Moab" statement.


    When I bought my '72 it had a 4" lift (springs and blocks) as well as a 2" body lift. The previous owner had already trimmed the "fangs" off the front fenders for extra clearance, and there certainly SEEMED to be plenty of clearance around the tires for anything I'd want to do.

    However, once I started really "wheeling" the truck it didn't take long for the tires to start rubbing and bending sheetmetal for me. In the front, it happened on the trailing edge of the fender opening (closest to the footwell) and in the rear, there was almost NO clearance on the leading edge of the fender opening.

    Perhaps you've already noticed that the rear axle seems to sit a little forward in the wheel opening? Using a set of zero-rates will help you get that back about 1.5" which would be just about perfect.

    Up front, you can do a custom springpack with the pin relocated forward by 1" or maybe use a set of zero rates up there too. It creates some problems with the steering (bumpsteer) so you'd probably want to invest in a front swaybar to try to control things a bit better.....then get a set of quick disconnects for when you go offroad.


    The bottom line is that a 1st Gen with 35's and a 4+1" lift will probably work just fine on the street and will look nice with little or NO cutting required. However, once you take it offroad and REALLY start to enjoy it there...you will be disappointed at all the ways those tires will rub and bend your sheetmetal.

    I've been trying to come up with ways to minimize the "look" of cut fenders, but ultimately if you want your truck to sit on big tires without a HUGE lift, and you decide to actually WHEEL it...you will probably have to come to terms with doing some cutting.

    Fortunately, front fenders are easy to find replacements for, so you can always "undo" what you've done later on if your conscience bothers you too much.

    Check out my gallery link, I have a number of shots of my truck when I first bought it (with a 4+2" lift and 35's) and pictures of the more recent setup too.


    /forums/images/graemlins/waytogo.gif
     
  5. mr_blasto

    mr_blasto 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for the responses. I have been mentally preoccupied with this problem for a while so I finally put it to rest. I decided to go with the 4" springs, rear shackle flip, and 1" body lift. Ended up being more than anticipated /forums/images/graemlins/doah.gif what's new. Stephen at ORD was extremely helpful. Now for the shocks. Per Stephens recommendation I think I am going to do that whole f-250 mount thingy in the front, and use the stock mount in the rear. I hope I have enough $ left over to get some Bilsteins, but I probably won't /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif. Any input?
     
  6. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    I've got pics of the Ford shock towers installed on my '72 on my gallery pages also....check it out.

    Bilsteins are supposed to be the new "hot" ticket, certainly better than the Ranchos I'm running. Getting longer shocks in the rear is a bit more tedious, but it can be done without cutting holes in the bed. Solving that one is probably NOT on your short list of priorities anyway....


    /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  7. LucasJ03

    LucasJ03 1/2 ton status

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    Here's a pic of my cut fenders and I don't think it looks that bad. But you can judge for yourself.
    [ [​IMG]
     
  8. mr_blasto

    mr_blasto 1/2 ton status

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    Those fenders don't look nearly as bad as some that I have seen. I guess a little moderation goes a long ways. I will probably be referring back to that picture a lot, thanks!

    Those towers looked like they turned out great. I was reading a post recently about some people using the Super Duty shock towers, those seem like a nice alternative. I guess it is more food for thought, but I have enough to keep me busy for a while. Thanks for all the input, it has been very helpful. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  9. Burt4x4

    Burt4x4 3/4 ton status

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    I also have trimmed a small amount to help my 35" SSRs fit with a 4" front spring and 5.5" rear spring oh and 3" body lift.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. dvldog 70k5

    dvldog 70k5 Registered Member

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Here's a pic of my cut fenders and I don't think it looks that bad. But you can judge for yourself.
    [ [​IMG]

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I like it alot. What are the specs on the lift and the rim and tire combo as is in the picture. Thanks man!

    Nick
     

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