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New truck

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by mouse, Nov 23, 2003.

  1. mouse

    mouse 1/2 ton status

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    This is my first time posting here. It seems to be the best forum I can find on 4x4's. Anyway, after moving to Montana, my days of working street cars are over (at least temporary) and I've decided to build an off-road capable truck. After a month of looking I found a '76 K20 just a block away. The body is rough - some rust and lots of dents, but the frame and chassis are great. It has 4.10 gears, a SM465, NP203, and a 350. Originally it was an auto with a 400 sb.
    I will be tightening up the 203 with a milemarker shaft conversion kit. I have just installed the front hubs so I can get more than 6 mpg.
    My question concerns lift. I want to be able to use the truck to go offroad and be reliable (why I wanted a 3/4 ton). My plan is for a 6" suspension lift (all spring) and to run 35" tires, probably BFG MT's. I understand the steering correction thats needed, but when I order the suspension parts do I need to be concerned about the t-case or drive shafts? Who do you recommend for the parts (BDS, ORD?) and any specific combo's. I'm looking to put a reliable truck together that is capable offroad - not the ultimate, but still capable.

    Thanks. /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif
     
  2. Z3PR

    Z3PR Banned

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    ORD has treated me really good. I highly recomend them. I had to have new driveshafts made for my 76 K5, but that wasn't a big deal, just find a local driveshaft shop.
     
  3. big pappa b

    big pappa b 3/4 ton status

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    BDS & Tuff Country springs are popular and good as well. ORD can hook you up with whatever you need. Customer service is /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    I'm trying to get to Montana myself this spring or summer but most likely I will go to Scott AFB.

    good luck capt. /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif
     
  4. mouse

    mouse 1/2 ton status

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    I was stationed at Dover AFB for 11 years. Its nice getting out west. I take it you're a C-5 guy, getting stuck to AMC bases!!! I switched over to the space/missile job after going thru OTS....
     
  5. SUBFAN

    SUBFAN 1/2 ton status

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    Do you want to stop at 35" tires?

    If it is that rusty, I would consider a lower lift like 2-4" and cut the wheelwells. Cutting the rust out is cheaper than replacing.
     
  6. big pappa b

    big pappa b 3/4 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    I take it you're a C-5 guy, getting stuck to AMC bases!!!

    [/ QUOTE ]
    Yep, that's me /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif I like Space command better. Was at Peterson in colorado springs a few years back. I miss it. But from what I hear I will be getting command leveled in the springtime or summer at the latest if I don't get an assignment somewhere else first
     
  7. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    I agree, if the body isn't cherry keep the lift lower and trim the sheet metal. Lot's of guys here run tires as big as 40" on as little as 3-5" of lift.

    Welcome to CK5!

    Rene
     
  8. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    But don't let him think he can actually wheel with 3/4 tons and 40s.
     
  9. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I would get a set of BDS springs, they seem to be the best.
    I have procomp springs and they are STIFF! As faar as your shaft lengths, It depends, SOme guys have to do drivelines at 4" but I have around 7" of lift and my front shaft is OK and my back needs to be lengthened a little.
     
  10. mouse

    mouse 1/2 ton status

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    I had debated on some cut-out fender flares and a 4" lift. I prefer a truck that can actually make it around on the trails rather than just a big truck. The 4.10 gears are low with stock-sized tires and are one reason I would like to go with 35's. The rust is minimal, the worst is the passenger side. The front fender and floor have some holes. Do you think the 6" lift detracts from the capability to get around offroad versus a lower lift?
     
  11. K1Orion

    K1Orion 1/2 ton status

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    Others here know more than I but my suggestions are:

    Shackle flip
    Cheap locker
    Axle shaving
    A set of BDS springs for the front to match the shackle flip. Zero rates may be needed in the rear to even things out.
    Sway bar disconnects will help.

    If I started over with a new project I would do it this way. The money saved with the cheap/free mods could be put toward wheels/tires or gas instead of new springs. New 56" springs can be more $ if that is what your truck has.

    Welcome to the site and spend some time looking around before you start buying parts. I have found more cool ideas and used stuff for sale here than I ever imagined.
    I could have saved some $$$ here and had more for other mods if I had found this place in the same shape you are.

    You have a blank canvas, I had a truck with a money spent on the wrong parts.
     
  12. K1Orion

    K1Orion 1/2 ton status

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    big pappa,
    If and when you get to Scott, let me know.
    I live in Fairview Heights and just married an AF brat.

    Is you Dad still selling his house or were you just kidding?
     
  13. mouse

    mouse 1/2 ton status

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    Orion, I appreciate the advice. I hope to do things right (mostly) the first time. I will probably go with new springs for the rear. The truck had seen some time with a slip-in camper and I'm sure the stock springs are shot. I know the diff idea would be great for more traction.
     

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