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Decreasing wheel-base

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by wfo163, Apr 27, 2003.

  1. wfo163

    wfo163 1/2 ton status

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    Has anyone here ever had experience with shortening a trucks frame. I dont meen bobbing the back behind the shackle hangers, but rather taking the section of frame that is in between the forward rear spring mounts and the rear body mounts. I have a k30 and I love how beefy the frame is but this thing has too much space between the axles. would it be possible to cut a section of frame out and weld up the the ends again? I am open to all inputs on this subject. I have been thinking though, what if I cut, shortened, rewelded, and then boxed the frame in that section where the mod was made. Would that work? I know that I would have to ditch the bed and get a new driveshaft so thats not an issue. I just want to know about the frame portion in particular. Thanks Guys!!! /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif-> /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif hopefully
     
  2. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Sure, I've done it to mine. If you or a friend knows (and I mean *KNOWS*) how to piece a frame, you can do it that way. I ran a frame machine for several years and pieced all kinds of frames. Most people butcher them though so be careful. Another option, just move the springs forward. That's what I wound up doing on my current Truggy.
    http://www.members.cox.net/russhuffman/shorty/shorty.html
     
  3. BigBurban350

    BigBurban350 1/2 ton status

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    Be aware that you could screw up your frames alighnment. You also better reenforce that section too or else youll hit a big bump and jump then CRACK /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif!
     
  4. BadDog

    BadDog SOL Staff Member Super Moderator Author

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    Actually, on these things (solid axle 4WD), frame alignment is the least of the problem. Pick up a few factory reference holes to set the length, and measure diagonal to avoid the diamond and your good in 2 dimensions (transfer to floor with a plumb if necessary, or build a bridge-point set). Measure up from a flat floor and you got the third, or do like I used to do, hang the laser mounts and measure. You also gotta realize, these frames are meant to flex. If you scab in a big honking brace/plate to compensate for inferior welds, you make a rigid point where the frame will work harden and crack next to it. I fixed several broken trucks “fixed” like this by other shops, never had one of mine break at or near one of my joints…

    I generally did it like this. 45* bevel on both butted ends of the frame. Spot/Tack weld a piece of (roughly) 1/8 x 1" strap stock (I often used pieces clipped out of junk frames, guaranteed alloy match) sticking out 1/2 on the back of one frame piece. This slides up behind the other piece. Now you can weld hot, burning into the strap a little to get a full penetration weld without blowing through and without affecting the frames structural integrity. Generally I would also preheat the section to be welded (especially in the winter) to assure good penetration, and make sure it does not cool *too* fast when done...
     

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