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Body mounts

Discussion in '1969-1972 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Roostr84, Mar 8, 2001.

  1. Roostr84

    Roostr84 1/2 ton status

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    I have the front end off of my truck right now to put in the new (to me) rocker boxes. I was checkin out the body mounts and was thinking about changing them. How hard is this to do?
     
  2. 71RestoRod

    71RestoRod 1/2 ton status

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    Body mounts? "Might-as-well" while you're there replacing those rocker boxes. Goes like this…

    First you pull off the old rocker boxes and discover that the cab supports and inner rocker panels are all rusted out. “Might-as-well” replace the supports, inner and outer rocker panels. When you look closely, you’ll see that the floors are rusted through under the doors and you “might-as-well” replace those too. Can’t stop now, you’ve come so far! “Might-as-well” whack off and replace the front and rear pillars. You “might-as-well” trim off and replace all of the Swiss-cheese body panels below the belt line. Oh-yea, don’t forget about fabbing up those rusted-out brackets that tie in the rocker boxes in the rear… you know… where all the rodents live. If you are careful, you keep the doors & top on, work on a level surface, etc… then it should only take a couple of months of shimming & tweaking to get the gaps right.

    Body mounts? No problem!
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2005
  3. Greg72

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

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    OK stop teasing us! Do you have a website with all these restoration photos? I personally would love to be able to see larger views of all these and really check out all that work you are doing / have done!

    -GregB
     
  4. Roostr84

    Roostr84 1/2 ton status

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    Lol true on the might as well aspect. I'd like to see more pics too. I already did the rockers and am just getting to the boxes now. But my one rear support looks about the same as yours. Nice work so far though.
     
  5. 71RestoRod

    71RestoRod 1/2 ton status

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    One word of constructive advice for Roostr84… If your body mounts are in bad shape, you should replace them before you replace the rocker boxes, otherwise you chance building stress into the tub and it will be harder to line things up later.

    In response to the web site… not yet. The Blaze is still a work in progress but I’ll be ready to shoot color and assemble it all when it warms up a bit. Here are a few more resto-pics from summer before last. The rear bed repair was a real motivator for me. It’s a classic repair, probably old hat for all you veteran body men out there. I call it… “Why the hell are you going to all that trouble when the carpet will cover it up anyway!” It was a close call as to whether I should replace the whole rear bed support, or just patch it up. After cutting out all of the rot, I determined that patching was the way to go.

    If folks still want to see more resto pics, I can post them as I go.

    Doug
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2005
  6. IGOR

    IGOR 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Man you need a website and fast - those pics are awesome and very inspiring!!!! Keep em coming!
     
  7. smp

    smp 1/2 ton status

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    I just replaced my body bushings this last weekend it wasn't to bad just use a drill and grinder to the bolt heads don't even think about reusing them mine were half the diamater from the rust i took some pictures i will post them soon it did take a full day and 3 trips to the hardware store for bolts.


    <A target="_blank" HREF=http://WWW.SMP.COLORADOK5.COM>http://WWW.SMP.COLORADOK5.COM</A>
     
  8. Steve_Chin

    Steve_Chin 1/2 ton status

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    71RestoRod: Wow! I have exactly the same rust (RR of bed, maybe a bit worse than yours). Where'd you get the patch material? I had to cut the back end out of a Pick-Up bed in order to get material and now I need to section it off of the rear support. Stuff's sitting in my side yard, just waiting for me to get the gas tank out of my Blazer (hopefully, some time this spring...).
     
  9. 71RestoRod

    71RestoRod 1/2 ton status

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    Steve,

    Thanks for the “wow”. The bed stock is readily available from just about anywhere… Comes in 16” x 48” sheets. I usually reach for the LMC catalogue first ($22.95/sheet), but I might have even picked it up from J.C. Whitney. It’s all the same thing. Your salvaged material is probably slightly thicker gauge metal but this stuff is close. The trick was to cut, weld and shape the bullnosed ends to match the rest of the bed. Not too tough… I give it two wrenches…
     
  10. Ressurection

    Ressurection 1/2 ton status

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    Hey Restorod, great looking project! I 2nd (or 3rd or 4th...) the idea of an inspirational website for your up to date project pics!

    Question, how did you get the pics on your messages?

    You can't beat going Topless!
     
  11. Greg72

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

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    Hey RestoRod,

    I will echo the sentiment of the other guys....these pictures are inspirational and awesome. There's something about seeing one of these 30-year old K5's coming 'back to life' and looking brand new again!

    What sort of welding equipment are you using for this project? I have never tackled sheetmetal repair or fabrication, but I really want to learn it. I was thinking of buying a MIG welder, since that seems to be a good 'all purpose' welder and would probably be fine for the type of work I'd be doing. Obviously, I'd start with a bunch of scrap metal and get lots of welding practice before I started trying to do anything to the K5!

    Any suggestions or input would be great.

    -Greg72
     
  12. 71RestoRod

    71RestoRod 1/2 ton status

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    Greg72,

    Thanks for your comments. I concur with bringing the K5 back to life. I bought the ’71 over ten years ago knowing full well it had a lot of rot. (Hell, it was that baby-scheisse ocher yellow on top of it all). I had every intention of trashing the body and using the chassis & drive train to swap under my ’49 Willys wagon. As it turned out, the damn Blazer had a soul of it’s own and my wife wouldn’t let me chop it up. (First restoration trick… let her think it’s her ride you’re restoring). Granted, if you drove it through a water puddle, you’d get splashed in the face… but as reliable as your favorite hunting dog. Good karma. It deserves a new lease on life.

    I think you’ve got the right idea on the welding. I use a MIG (170 amp / 220 volt). It doesn’t take a lot of $$ to get a decent MIG welder. I bought the 170/220 because, ironically, it provides better control at lower settings.

    Spend the money and purchase an auto-darkening helmet (speed glass) and it will make you an instant expert.

    TIG is a far superior welding process when it comes to the quality of the weld, but MIG is the only way to go for the occasional home hobby guy (i.e.; me). When you butt weld with TIG, you butt the two pieces right up to each other. With MIG, you need to leave a gap about the width of the material thickness. One disadvantage to MIG is the grinding involved in the finish work. Grinding warps the metal, but with practice you can minimize the bead.

    Buy a book and read all about it before you get started… and then throw it away because it’s all practice. The most important consideration when doing the bodywork (i.e.; patch panels) is to keep the heat down by joining the metal with a series of tack welds. If you try to run a long bead on sheet metal it will warp it to hell. Keep the tacks as far apart as possible and let the metal cool all the way down. Take your time and fill in the seam by alternating the tack welds in between.

    On my tub, for the factory assembly points such as the rockers and floors, etc., I used the factory assembly manual to reference the spot-weld placements. You really can’t tell the thing was chopped to pieces, even from the backside / underneath… and the spot welds look factory. Another trick is to select your patch areas carefully. I made my cuts near the style lines (a trick learned from a veteran body man) to provide a little more strength and stability against metal warping and shrinkage.

    When you are fabricating the complicated stuff, mock it up in cardboard first. Some of my favorite body tools are the body saw, air cutter, snips and air grinder but God I wish I had a plasma cutter. Next year.

    Last word of advice that can’t be overstated… don’t cut anything until you have in your possession and have studied closely the replacement piece. The quality of the off-the-shelf replacement panels suck. I returned a lot of stuff before I was satisfied with what I had to work with. A lot of times, the ‘yard is the only place to go for good body parts or partial clips.

    Hope this helps. Go for it and have fun in the doing!
     

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