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Question - Swap just the rear quarters or the whole rear?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by grimjaw, Apr 10, 2005.

  1. grimjaw

    grimjaw 1/2 ton status

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    I tried posting this in the Body Shop but got no replies after a week. Man its dead in there.

    I have a 85 K5 parts truck that has a good body. I plan on swapping the front clip to my 79. The rear qurater panels on the 79 were also chopped badly by the PO. The 85 has good rear quarters and rear floor. Would it be easier to swap the entire rear or just the side panels?

    I have never done this before but it seems pretty straight forward. Is there some place to see where the seams are? Diagrams or pictures would be great. The area around the B pillar is a bit confusing. Thanks.
     
  2. ryoken

    ryoken Puppy Fabricator Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    hmmm, i never saw it...

    swapping tubs would be easiest...
     
  3. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Take a really close look at ALL of the places that the sides are welded to other parts. It is a real PITA to swap a side panel.

    But... Somewhere along the way, GM changed the floor so that the rear seat passengers could actually have some leg room. To accomodate the change, they also had to change the frame slightly. I'm sure that the '79 has the all-flat rear floor. I can't recall the exact year that they made the change, but that '85 may have the "more legroom" rear floor. If so, that will make swapping the tubs more of a challenge. :(
     
  4. 1979jimmy350

    1979jimmy350 1/2 ton status

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    77 was the year that they changed the floor so a 79 will have the footwell for the rear passangers
     
  5. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    I had a '77. It didn't have the foot well. Maybe '78 was the change? I was think it was in the early 80's, but I jumped from a '77 to a '75 and then to an '87. :confused:
     
  6. 1979jimmy350

    1979jimmy350 1/2 ton status

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    what i ment was 77 was the last year with out the footwells. I had a 79 and it did have the footwells
     
  7. grimjaw

    grimjaw 1/2 ton status

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    Swaping tubs my be easier but.... The one of the POers added a crapy sun roof on the 85. The other major issue is the VIN. Due to smog laws in Georgia and no smog equipment on the 79, I need to maintain the 79 VIN. I think it is doable, just sorting out where to drill and cut around the door jams ans B pillar. Moving the whole rear seems like less work overall. The seam between the front and rear front is held toghter with screws. This looks much easier than freeing the side from the floor...Twice on each truck.

    Thanks for the input, any comments are welcome.
     
  8. Resurection

    Resurection Registered Member

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    In the process of putting a moded 85 on a 75 frame and the body mounts defintely do not match so I have some fab work to do but the end product is a rust free body and it will still maintain the 75 lines.
     
  9. PhoenixZorn

    PhoenixZorn 1/2 ton status

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    I was just discussing this earlier this weekend... I was helping a couple guys in rockford remove the tub from a ~78 K5 frame, and it was an 82 body... it still have the 78 front clip, and they said the front clip doesn't match up to the 82 body perfectly. You'll also have to do some frame alteration to make the 85 body sit on the 79 frame.

    From what I saw of the tub removal, unless you have a plasma cutter and some good welding skills, you'll probably just want to do a tub swap rather than a panel or even "just rear" swap... the whole tub of a blazer comes off in one piece, and the frame just rolls away. You drop on the new tub, attach all your wires, pedals, etc... and you are done...

    That's over simplified of course, but you get the idea... if you just want to replace a panel or two, you better be damn good at welding.
     
  10. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    I cut the entire rear half of a 73 off and then cut and spliced the rear half of the 73 onto the front half of my 81 Jimmy. I would gladly have swapped the entire '73 tub but it had been in a head on and the firewall/cowl/windshield frame area was pretty wrecked.

    I'd swap bedsides myself. Spot welded down the door jamb area, and all along the top of the bedside rails, and down the tail light area. There are a couple of braces that'd unbolt. The outer skin and the fenderwell are spot welded along the lip as well.

    The hard part will probably be around where the half cab meets the bedside.

    Rene
     

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