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My First post: Help me fix up my truck (trans, gears, tires, rust)

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by 86sierra, Apr 7, 2004.

  1. 86sierra

    86sierra Registered Member

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    My truck is a 1986 GMC Sierra Classic K1500 4x4. I've had it for 5 years, it was my first vehicle and I plan on keeping it forever. When I bought it, it was lifted 4" (skyjacker softride i believe) with new 35x12.5x15 BFG AT's. The truck was clean with no visible rust. About 2 years ago, my stock 305 motor overheated and I had a 350 installed.
    Now, my truck is in need of some work. I mainly just want a solid, dependable truck to drive, do some offroading, and pull a boat with (18'ski boat).

    So here's what I need opinions, suggestions, and help with:
    1. Transmission. My 700R4 is slipping and needs replaced or rebuilt. What is my best option? Local rebuild? I've searched and found good reviews of the bowtie overdrives, could a first timer install one themselves?

    2. Gears. Mine are stock, not sure what ratio (any easy way to find out??) I'm thinking 4.56 would be best? What would be a good locker/limited slip to put in the rear for my intended use?

    3. New tires. I've liked my BFG AT's, but would like something a little more agressive like a BFG MT. What else is a good tire?

    4. Rust. My truck has developed rust in the cab corners, rocker panels, above the rear fenders, and around the tailights. Where's the best place to find replacement panels, etc.
    Thanks for your help, sorry this was so long.
     
  2. bigyellowjimmy

    bigyellowjimmy 1/2 ton status

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    WELCOME /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    Where do you live and what type of offroading will you use it for?
     
  3. pauly383

    pauly383 Daddy383 Staff Member Moderator

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    Yes , you could probably install the tranny. The BFG M/T's are fine tires. LMC truck has those parts for body, there are others out there, quick search for Chevy truck panels will turn up a few hundred I'm sure (on internet), with an overdrive and 35's 4.56 sounds good, if it was th350 I'd say 4.10's. Light wheeling the axles should be ok maybe, if you ever plan on larger tires , you may want to check out the cost of other axles versus beefing your up, I run 1/2 ton stuff , but I have 33's so I get away with it. Whatever you do , stick around here and post pics when its done /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif
     
  4. 77 Mud Buddy

    77 Mud Buddy 1/2 ton status

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    Well, as for tires and for what you want to do I would suggest BFG M/T's. They seem to last a long time for M/T's, handle pretty good on road, pretty tough off road / darn good in the mud grap rocks pretty good too.

    My neighbor bought a stage III 700 from bowtieoverdrives.com (700r4.com) He is pretty impressed with the tranny except shifting from 2 - 3. It is too hard of a shift, the whole truck jolts when shifting to 3rd. They suggested the level III tranny to him because he was going to run 35" tires with 3.73's. I belive they wouldnt warrentee a level II tranny with his current set up. One of there upgrades in the level III tranny is something to stiffen up 2-3 shifting, well they for sure got that figured out cause it does. To try and avoid this possible issue you might just get a level II. They might warrentee a level II tranny with the right gears / tires. None the less Very good tranny, very good customer support, no problems besides the shifting thing mentioned above.

    That's about all the info I have to offer. Good luck /forums/images/graemlins/waytogo.gif
     
  5. 86sierra

    86sierra Registered Member

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    Thanks for the replies and welcome.
    I live in north central Indiana. So it's mostly flat and I plan on using the truck for wheeling in fields, mud, or whatever I can find that's not too hard core.
    Any recomendations on what limited slip or locker to put in the rear?
     
  6. 75-K5

    75-K5 3/4 ton status

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    Where in north central Indiana?
     
  7. 77 Mud Buddy

    77 Mud Buddy 1/2 ton status

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    the first thing you need to deside is what you want for sure for added traction. Lockers are the best for traction ( of course ) but limited slip is better than open and driveable. If this is a dialy driver / wheeler I would seggest a limited slip up front and rear, if you really want traction move up to a locker in the rear.

    Here is a little of my locker experience. We ( 4 of us K5 guys here in Austin, TX.) have run the "PowerTrax Lockright" in the front and rears of our 1/2 ton stuff on 35" tires. This locker has never failed us and for only about $250 new it is well worth it. I personally have busted both front axle shafts with this locker installed and it didnt have a mark on the locker. Other versions of this locker are the Detroit EZ-locker and Genuine quick locker. They look identical.... in my opinion they are the same ( no proof ... just looks) These are also pretty easy to install in the rear axle. Just a matter of pulling the cover, taking the tires off, pushing the axles in till the c-clips can be removed, remove the old spiders (assuming you have an open rear) follow the installation instructions (they are pretty good just follow them closely) put it all back together and you should be done start to finish in about 2.5 hours if it is your first time. I've installed them in about 1.5 hours after doing a couple. The front is a little more difficult because you have to take the front tires, calipers, locking hubs, hubs/rotor, backing plate then pull the axle shafts out to continue. With my D44 front I had to remove my ring gear to get the locker in. If you have to do this just make sure to put every thing back as you took it out as to not mess up you ring / pinion set up. So there is a little more of my knowledge and experince. Take it for what it is worth. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  8. bigyellowjimmy

    bigyellowjimmy 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Thanks for the replies and welcome.
    I live in north central Indiana. So it's mostly flat and I plan on using the truck for wheeling in fields, mud, or whatever I can find that's not too hard core.
    Any recomendations on what limited slip or locker to put in the rear?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Sure thing, the BFG M/T's should be excellent tires for you. I also would recommend the Lockright for the rear with your stock differential. Yes, probably 4.10 or 4.56 gears would work well with the 700 tranny. You could always go with a 14FF with 4.10's or 4.56's already installed, add a Detroit locker and match the front gears but you must also convert the front to 8 lug either by replacing the diff or replace the hubs. Not sure how much work you want to do but I expect your stock running gear should hold up for muddy field wheeling......have fun /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  9. 86sierra

    86sierra Registered Member

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Where in north central Indiana?

    [/ QUOTE ]
    Near Marion
     
  10. gm4x

    gm4x 1/2 ton status

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    Hey, another Hoosier! /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif My 2cents (for what it's worth...lol) If you're younger, cash isn't growing on trees in your back yard (if so, I want your address!) Keep things simple until you get some mechanical experience. Start with simpler things (less expensive)for now. Sounds like your tranny isn't gonna wait, so I'd start there. I looked at the bowtie trannys, NICE! I wouldn't be cheap when it comes to that (tranny). Sounds like alot of folks here used them & are happy.
    When you tow, don't tow in overdrive (unless Bowtie says otherwise), if you're gonna wheel your truck, new sheetmetal & paint won't last long, so you gotta draw a line somewhere. If you love the truck, fix 'er up & make 'er shine, but buy a thrash-wagon (beater) for the rough stuff. That way when something breaks (and it will /forums/images/graemlins/doah.gif) you still gotta ride to work. /forums/images/graemlins/waytogo.gif
     
  11. 77 Mud Buddy

    77 Mud Buddy 1/2 ton status

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    I can not agree more. I had visions of a Daily driver wheeler with my 77 Blazer. Well, now it's one-ton, locked, crossed, hydro'ed, on 42" tsl w/hummer double beadlocks. I think I violate muliple safety rules to get it regestered anymore. Although that is my plan I have still yet to register it. I havent driven it since my major upgrades but I am thinking it will not be good for a daily anymore (understatment).

    One more thing I was going to mention on the Tranny issue. Get to know poeple in your area with K5's or even K10's 20's 30's. Before you know it you will probably run across somebody that has rebuilt a tranny or two... then bada bing, you have a rebuilt tranny for much less than $1000 or so. Have you checked out the local forum in your area on CK5? There might be somebody close to you that knows a few things you dont and vise versa.
     
  12. zakk

    zakk 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    My truck is a 1986 GMC Sierra Classic K1500 4x4. I've had it for 5 years, it was my first vehicle and I plan on keeping it forever. When I bought it, it was lifted 4" (skyjacker softride i believe) with new 35x12.5x15 BFG AT's. The truck was clean with no visible rust. About 2 years ago, my stock 305 motor overheated and I had a 350 installed.
    Now, my truck is in need of some work. I mainly just want a solid, dependable truck to drive, do some offroading, and pull a boat with (18'ski boat).

    So here's what I need opinions, suggestions, and help with:
    1. Transmission. My 700R4 is slipping and needs replaced or rebuilt. What is my best option? Local rebuild? I've searched and found good reviews of the bowtie overdrives, could a first timer install one themselves?

    2. Gears. Mine are stock, not sure what ratio (any easy way to find out??) I'm thinking 4.56 would be best? What would be a good locker/limited slip to put in the rear for my intended use?

    3. New tires. I've liked my BFG AT's, but would like something a little more agressive like a BFG MT. What else is a good tire?

    4. Rust. My truck has developed rust in the cab corners, rocker panels, above the rear fenders, and around the tailights. Where's the best place to find replacement panels, etc.
    Thanks for your help, sorry this was so long.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    1 & 2

    700r + 35" or bigger tires = 5.13's. no debate. see the sig

    3. 5.13's

    4. rust = 5.13's


    that sums it up.
     
  13. gm4x

    gm4x 1/2 ton status

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    Yeah, it's easy to have a "plan", but harder to stick to it. I think more often than not, things kinda go alittle past the finish line (if there is one?). I have plans for my 86, just to have a strong, clean driver that turns heads. No 12" lift & 44" Mudders, not a "poser". After joining here, I realized how much fun I missed from off-roading, hence my thoughts (one day) of buying a cheap beater I can build & bash.

    Trannys & engines were always 2 things I am VERY leery of buying "used", that is unless I am a good friend of the owner/builder. Bought too many "pigs in a poke". Deal with someone reputable, pay alittle more "upfront" & get a warranty,(CYA) buy certain used components & you're rollin' the dice.
     
  14. 86sierra

    86sierra Registered Member

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    Here's a picture of my truck:
    [​IMG]
     

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