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Newbie with a bunch of Mod questions looking for help

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by 88Silverado, May 7, 2003.

  1. 88Silverado

    88Silverado 1/2 ton status

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    Location:
    Quartz Hill, So. Cal
    Hi All,
    Well...summer is coming around and hopefully I can start making some mods for my recently aquired 88 K5.
    I have several questions and have done many searches on the site and have found lots of neat stuff but most of it looks pretty expensive and extensive. Funds are very limited and will come in small amounts over long periods of time. I would love to build a full blown rock crawler but im going to have to settle for a truck that is reliable and durable, since it will be the main transportation to and from camping runs etc while fully loaded. I will be making these mods over a long period of time. Several of my friends have Jeeps and are telling me to sell the "Boat" and get a "Real" 4x4 cuz the Blazer would not be able to go half the places they go cuz its too big /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif Oh well, I like the Blazer so thats what im going to use /forums/images/graemlins/laugh.gif If you can please provide some help it would greatly be appreciated. Guess a list of prioritys would be good. I need to get some tires before I do any wheeling and looks like 33's are where im going to have to start.

    1) The truck currently has Corporate 10 bolts with 3.73's. I know theres alot of info about swapping to D60's or 14FF. Thats probably going to have to wait. Im looking at starting with 33's then maybe someday 35's so will the 10 Bolts be OK or is a Dana 44 a better interum setup? What about changing the stock hubs?

    2) I have a line on some Eaton posi's, will those work in front and rear or do I really need a Locker?

    3) I was thinking about a 2.5" front spring swap with 2.5" shakle flips due to the simplicity or do I need to go to 4" and make all the mods that go with that? From what can tell, theres a million changes thats required for 4" and many problems that can come with it.

    4) The xfercase is a 208, is the 205 a better swap? can the xfercase chaindrive handle the load of 33's or what mods need to be done. What about a fixed yoke ?

    5) What about loading on the 700r trans?

    6) I assume the best thing is to get the most articulation possible, Does this require shock mount relocation and longer spring swap or can the stock setup with some minor/medium work be tweaked sufficiently (greased bushings and looser shakle bolts with nylock nuts)?

    7) Many years ago (when I was a kid) we had a 57 CJ5, we use to run tubes in tubeless tires so you could run low pressure and not worry about breaking a bead and getting a flat. Is this still a valid technique?

    8) Steering box frame reinforcement. Is this a necessity?

    9) Crossover steering?

    10) Im sure during the summer, while we are wheeling, the wife is going to want the airconditioning running. Is the stock setup (tow-package cooling) suficient or should I switch to electric fan setup? (I have a set of Ford Winstar dual fans that will fit the radiator perfectly and pull about 5000 CFM)

    Basically I want to have something reliable, affordable and that can go most places others can. Where do I start? Ive been thru the basic drivetrain and engine maint and all is in good shape. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks!
     
  2. zcarczar

    zcarczar 1/2 ton status

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    Location:
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    1) 10 bolts and Dana 44's are nearly the same axle. They will both work fine with 35's as long as you drive with your head and not with your foot.

    2)The eaton's front and rear will help a lot. While they are not as good as a Detroit they will probably give better handling characteristics for you

    3)I would say do the 4" lift the first time. Yes you will most likely need a rear shaft and you will have to do brake lines and put a new steering arm on it, but its not as bad as you think.

    4)208 will work fine

    5)700 will also work fine, just make sure you have a good cooler for it and maybe install a manual Tourque Convertor lockup kit to keep it from locking and unlocking all of the time.

    6)Good Aftermarket springs will give you awesome flex. You may want to relocate the rear shock mounts because the stock mounts suck and often break

    7)Never heard of that being done.

    8)Yes

    9)Only if your going to be doing some hardcore crawling, try it out stock first and see how that works and go from there.

    10)Try the stock setup first, mine will usually hit 210 or so with the A/C on and sitting still. If it shows any signs of over heating slap that Aerostar system on, just make sure your alternator can handle it.
     
  3. bee32

    bee32 1/2 ton status

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    Location:
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    Jason pretty much hit all. The only thing that I will add is that with a 4" lift you will NOT HAVE to get a new rear drive shaft. It will slide out some of the rear of the Xtsfer case but it shouldn't pop out. Mine is stock and it has never fallen out. I have had it pretty torqued out and haven't had a problem. I am getting a new longer drive shaft soon but I am going to a 6" susp lift. The gears are right on the money for the size tires and kinda drivin you are plannin. Your set up will be very similar to mine and I have had very few problems. I blew the front axle at Tellico but we later found out that was due to an error that was made durring the installation of the U-Joint by someone else. It might still have happened but then again my buddies didn't go and he also runs the same setup. The mods you are talking about are not all that extensive and are relatively easy. But time consuming, usually a weekend for each seperate one. But the aftermath of knowing you did it all yourself is well worth the time.
     
  4. yellowK20

    yellowK20 Well Lubricated Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    Location:
    Wasilla AK,
    [ QUOTE ]
    Several of my friends have Jeeps and are telling me to sell the "Boat" and get a "Real" 4x4 cuz the Blazer would not be able to go half the places they go cuz its too big Oh well, I like the Blazer so thats what im going to use

    [/ QUOTE ] Fullsize's rock don't listen to them as long as the trail isn't real super narrow or twisty the blazer will be far superior plus you'll have more room ,more power and more "creature comforts" than your HEEP buddies
     
  5. Grim-Reaper

    Grim-Reaper 3/4 ton status Author

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    Atlanta
    Only company that I'm aware of that makes a 2.5 inch spring is Rancho. THat's what is on my 75. In reality that spring is 3.75 inches of lift with a 350 engine and a winch on the front bumper.
    Do a 4 inch flip in the rear.
    1 inch zero rate both ends and shift the front axle forward 1 inch. Cut the fenders back to the inner fender. 1 inch body lift and you can clear 35's on 15x10 with 4 inch back space with no scrub. It will stand right at 7ft tall.
    It's a good combo.
    If you want to run your sway bar you can with ORD quick disconnects. But since your going to do cross over your going to have to ditch the bar. Handles like crap on the street but does good offroad without the sway. Don't even think about towing without the front bar.
     
  6. Thunder

    Thunder 3/4 ton status

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    Location:
    Northeast Nevada
    [ QUOTE ]
    Several of my friends have Jeeps and are telling me to sell the "Boat" and get a "Real" 4x4 cuz the Blazer would not be able to go half the places they go cuz its too big Oh well, I like the Blazer so thats what im going to use

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Dont let Jeepers comments get you down. They really dont know any better. Most of them live in TV commercial land.
    I wheel with a bunch of jeepers I used to get a ration of crap about my "Full Size". After many years of towing them out of the hills and fixing the many busted parts on those POS Heeps they usully keep their mouths shut now. Many of them have lost the jeep parts on their rigs, and have converted to GM gear (350/350/205/D44s ect).
    I can usually out climb most jeeps and my k5 is definatly better in the mud than most jeeps.Unless they are heavly modified.
    If you build your truck as suggusted in above posts your jeep buddys may start looking at your "Boat" with envy. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  7. alesko

    alesko Registered Member

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    I also own a cj jeep along with my chevy.
    The only thing the jeep has over the chevy is a little more manuverability.
    The jeep is very expensive to repair with parts costing between 2 to 3 times as much as chevy. Also jeep parts are harder to find.
    My chevy beats the jeep hands down in power, comfort, traction, clearance, and most of all, parts cost, availiabilty, and interchangeability.
    Do yourself a favor keep the chevy and don't ever question your choice.

    TRUST ME,

    Andy
     
  8. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Several of my friends have Jeeps and are telling me...

    [/ QUOTE ]

    lesson #1, never listen to a guy in a heep. /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

    [ QUOTE ]
    1) The truck currently has Corporate 10 bolts with 3.73's. Im looking at starting with 33's then maybe someday 35's so will the 10 Bolts be OK or is a Dana 44 a better interum setup? What about changing the stock hubs?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    D44 and 10b are almost identical in strength, really no point in swapping out a 10b for a d44. As to tires, yes a 10b should be able to handle 33s with no problems, prolly even 35s. The front 10b is the better of the two, its relatively easy to swap in stronger axle shafts and/or u-joints and have a relatively durable axle. The rear 10b is semi-floating, and pretty much nuttin short of converting it to full-floating (very $pendy) will make it much more 4x4 worthy. Semi-floating axles suck because the axle shaft must bear the weight of the rig and the torque used to turn the wheels. Full floating axles shafts only bear the torque to turn the wheels while bearings hold the weight of the rig. That said, there are better axles for the rear of your rig... a 12b or semi-floating 14b could prolly be found hella cheap (ck5ers are swappin them out all the time!) and would be much better for 4x4 purposes.

    [ QUOTE ]
    2) I have a line on some Eaton posi's, will those work in front and rear or do I really need a Locker?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I wouldnt put a locker in a 10 bolt... thats just my opinion. I had two very well built 10b in my rig at one point, I used Detroit trutracs (lim slip) front and rear and that worked really well for me. If you can get those eatons hella cheap, it might not be a bad deal at all. any kind of limited slip etc is better than an open diff.

    [ QUOTE ]
    3) I was thinking about a 2.5" front spring swap with 2.5" shakle flips due to the simplicity or do I need to go to 4" and make all the mods that go with that?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    if you are working on a budget... I'd go with a short lift. Whether thats 2.5" or 4" depends on what you want to do with the rig. If you trim fenders, you can fit 35s with no lift at all. If you dont wanna touch the fenders, you'll need atleast 4" to get over 35s. Personally, if I was you, I'd put a "wanted to buy" post here on ck5 and follow the "for sale" forum to find someone selling their lift (peeps here are always going bigger). So long as the springs are in good shape you could prolly get a hell of a deal and save your limited $$$ for other projects.

    [ QUOTE ]
    From what can tell, theres a million changes thats required for 4" and many problems that can come with it.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    yes, the higher you lift the more mods you need to do to make it work well. If you dont wanna mess with your driveshafts and all that jazz right now, 2.5" of lift might be a good idea... you wouldnt need much in the way of steering-correcting stuff either... prolly just a dropped pitman arm.

    Shackle flips are always a good way to lift the rear end of a k5... dunno how cheap they are these days but lots of peeps make shackle flip kits... combine that with some used springs off ck5 here and you're set...

    [ QUOTE ]
    4) The xfercase is a 208, is the 205 a better swap? can the xfercase chaindrive handle the load of 33's or what mods need to be done. What about a fixed yoke ?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    For what you are going to run, the 208 is entirely sufficient. The 205 is better in that it has a iron case (tough!), all-gear drive (tough!) and fixed yokes f/r. The 208 on the other hand is lighter and has a better low range. For me, the deal breaker for swapping a 205 in place of my 208 was the rear slip yoke. Theres no two ways about it, slip yokes are a crappy design. Always have been, always will be. That said, for what you plan on using your rig for, the 208 should be fine. You can always swap it out later when you get more $... for the time being $ would prolly be spent better elsewhere.

    [ QUOTE ]
    5) What about loading on the 700r trans?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    if well built the 700r4 is a great OD tranny. If you don't have the $ to buy a trick aftermarket one or to rebuild your current one, I'd highly recommend getting atleast a big cooler for it and/or a deep aluminum oil pan. Heat is the biggest enemy of the 700r4... keep it cool and it should serve you well.

    [ QUOTE ]
    6) I assume the best thing is to get the most articulation possible,

    [/ QUOTE ]

    well... we always talk that way here... but if you are a desert racer, mud bogger, or just drive your rig on the street all the time, lots of articulation isnt a good thing.

    [ QUOTE ]
    Does this require shock mount relocation and longer spring swap or can the stock setup with some minor/medium work be tweaked sufficiently (greased bushings and looser shakle bolts with nylock nuts)?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    if your springs are flexy enuff to max out your shocks travel, then yeah, getting longer shocks and attaching them via custom mounts is a good idea. Its super-cheap/easy to do on your rigs front end if you do the ford shock tower swap. Not as simple or cheap in the rear, 55willys makes a good shock crossmember thats competitively priced...

    [ QUOTE ]
    7) Many years ago (when I was a kid) we had a 57 CJ5, we use to run tubes in tubeless tires so you could run low pressure and not worry about breaking a bead and getting a flat. Is this still a valid technique?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    If it works its valid. Most peeps I know that are REALLY worried about losing a bead run beadlocks.

    [ QUOTE ]
    8) Steering box frame reinforcement. Is this a necessity?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    pretty much. There are weld in kits and bolt in kits. For what you are gonna be runnin one of the bolt in kits should be entirely appropriate.

    [ QUOTE ]
    9) Crossover steering?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    x-over is simply attaching your steering box to a passanger side steering arm as opposed to a drivers side steering arm (stock configuration). here are pics of my x-over system...
    pic1
    pic2

    [ QUOTE ]

    10) Im sure during the summer, while we are wheeling, the wife is going to want the airconditioning running. Is the stock setup (tow-package cooling) suficient or should I switch to electric fan setup? (I have a set of Ford Winstar dual fans that will fit the radiator perfectly and pull about 5000 CFM)

    [/ QUOTE ]

    until my compressor blew up my factory AC was always sufficient...

    [ QUOTE ]
    Basically I want to have something reliable, affordable and that can go most places others can. Where do I start? Ive been thru the basic drivetrain and engine maint and all is in good shape. Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    if it was me, I'd upgrade the axles first and then do the other stuff with what $ is left over. Upgrading axles doesnt HAVE to cost you a lot of $... you might find a cheap semi floating 14 bolt at a yard or via ck5... and swap in some warn chrome-moly shafts + new joints into your front axle. Just those 2 mods would give ya a huge improvement in durability. After the axles are set, lift it... then when u get $ optimize steering (xover!) and suspension (trick shock mounting and all that jazz). Just my 2 cents...

    j
     
  9. jms

    jms 1/2 ton status Author

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    I'd take it easy on the mods. When I lived in San Diego, I had tons of fun on trails throughout SoCal, Death Valley, and Arizona, with essentially a stock K5 on 32's, no lift. One typically underestimates what these trucks are capable of. Just make very sure everything is in good working order and dependable, upgrade when in doubt, and get good quality tires. Then try out some trails and see how the truck does - I think you'd be very pleased. After that, see what upgrades would improve the truck for what you use it for.

    This requires some common sense, of course - stay away from the Hammers and trails like that. Also, stay away from the "Hey y'all, watch this!" kind of 'wheeling, and when you're out with others, a good motto to live by is "You go first". That way, you can see what lines the other vehicles take over an obstacle. There are plenty of trails you can do with a slightly modified vehicle and have lots of fun. Then again, if you'd rather turn a wrench, that in itself can be fun. With respect to upgrades, essentially your wallet is the only limit. Just my two cents.
     

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