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89 k5, just purchased needs some advice

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by midwest, Oct 5, 2006.

  1. midwest

    midwest Registered Member

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    I have just returned to my roots and purchased and 89 K5. I owned quite a few of these when I was younger and felt the need to get me a new toy.

    My questions

    The K5 has very poor ride quality. It drives smooth, but taking corners is a bear. It seems to react late and just does not feel stable. it is not at high speeds either. Is there something wrong, or Have I just been spoiled by driving newer trucks?


    It seems to be running rich. It runs great, but I get a rather strong fuel smell coming in from the back window when its down. Is there any adjustments that can be made?

    Thanks to anyone that could lend me an idea or two...:bow:
     
  2. neverendingproject

    neverendingproject 1/2 ton status

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    k5's dont run like ferraris, so you know its going to ride rough, how rough or bad or whatever is up to your judgement. The window thing is common. Aero dynamics of the K5's make it so the exhaust swirls right behind the window and it the window if its down. If its running rich, I would start replacing sensors as the ones that are on there are probably original anyways.
     
  3. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    check the steering box bolts. Often enough they loosen up, which leads to other problems. Often enough the frames crack where the box mounts. Also, that area of the frame isn't designed very well and it'd be prudent to add a brace which will firm up that part and help prevent cracking. These things will all help the steering feel as the box won't be squirming, moving, or flexing with the steering input.

    I doubt it'll ever feel like some of the newer trucks, but I'm sure you can make some improvements.

    Rough ride is a function of spring rate and shock valving as well as the condition of the shocks. There are a few companies out there making 'soft ride' or 'EZ ride' springs, and getting some good quality shocks always helps. Some K5's came with quad shocks up front and often they were replaced with 4 regular shocks when the originals wore out. This leads to double the damping needed and makes for a brutal ride too.

    I find if I open one of the butterfly windows I get less fumes in the truck. Less low pressure behind the truck to draw the exhaust in. Those deflectors you used to see on station wagon's work pretty good at fixing this problem...although a lot of guys hate the look of them. Personally I find a 45 degree tailpipe exit works best, and on mine I have a slight downturn at the tip too.

    Rene
     
  4. trailblazr81

    trailblazr81 1/2 ton status

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    No rear sway bar and really old technology solid axle leaf springs make our rides not the best for cornering or ride comfort. Wait til you add a locker and some mudders. Plus all the rubber is 17+ years old and you may have worn shocks. And like mentioned before if you want to run with the back window down you need to do something with the exhaust. Ive had a 81 and 86 K5 and I would just have my front windows open as well and usually would get air rushing through the truck and would be ok til I came to a stop.
     
  5. midwest

    midwest Registered Member

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    Wow, thanks for all the informative suggestions. I am on vacation next week and will be checking on all these things mentioned. I have to say, I'm really impressed and am considering paying for a memebership here.

    I'd also like to mention that I am impressed with the amount of replacement parts that are still available for these vehicles. I have purchased several items from my dealer today. It shows that these K5's are here to stay!!
     

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