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Replacing engine crossmember (part II of frame cracks)

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Leadfoot, Dec 6, 2002.

  1. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    When I purchased my 78 I knew it had a cracked crossmember. I cut the old one out (2 pieces) and replaced it with a crossmember from Missourri Offroad. Unfortuneately I do not have ANY lift on this truck (and don't want any for what I do with it). When I bolted the MOO unit it, it hit the differential......DOH!!!!
    I then modified it a little but with the added weight of the plow and any bumps, it would smack the spring plate......DOH again.

    Doctor4x4 (thanks) sent me one out of a parts truck he had. I tried getting it in every which way (even taking all the accessories off the front of the motor and trying it that way and no go.......DOH! (do you see a pattern here).

    I found a way to do it without cutting the crossmember or the frame (which both thoughts came across my mind). It only took two steps.........









    1 Remove the motor and everything attached to it and
    2 Remove the frame mounts that the motor mounts bolt to.


    Once those two EASY /forums/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif steps are done, you can slide the crossmember into the frame (about the area just in front of the torque converter where the frame is a little wider than the front), slide it forward and whallah!

    Then reverse steps 2 and 1 and you are all set........did I mention
    DOHHHH! /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif

    Actually it took me one night to pull the motor, one night to F-around doing odd things while it was out and plow snow with my buddy's truck as we got 4", and hopefully I will have it back in and running this weekend..

    Oh well, thought some might like to know what's involved. And Wes if you are wondering, I did clean the frame and Zinc plated grade 8 bolt it back together (although I did not paint it) /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  2. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    Yeah, it's amazing how much easier that part of the truck is to work on with no motor in the way. The frame repair kit is cake to fit, weld etc with no motor or front clip to get in your way.../forums/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif

    Rene
     
  3. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    Well when I had to patch my frame, I did it with everything on, and it was no pick nick, but nowI have a month before the next trip and since I am going to strip the front sheet metal anyway, I will see if it makes it easier, I really don't want to take the engine off just for that, but I want to clean it off and make sure it's plenty strong before I put the bigger meats, 39 or 40"
     
  4. K10ANDYKHAMNIC

    K10ANDYKHAMNIC 1/2 ton status

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    dang u almost coulda made one like mine ....thats a lot of futzing around for an x memeber ...
     
  5. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    The front clip is a 20 minute job with 2 guys. 10 bolts at the cowl and 2 body mount bolts under the rad support and it comes off in one piece. I'm sure you already knew that though./forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    Rene
     
  6. thatK30guy

    thatK30guy 1 ton status Premium Member

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    </font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
    And Wes if you are wondering, I did clean the frame and Zinc plated grade 8 bolt it back together (although I did not paint it)

    [/ QUOTE ]

    /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    I still like how you did all that work of removing the rivets and replacing them for the grade 8's. /forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif Got me thinking of doing the same thing with a K30 frame I'm getting. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  7. m j

    m j 1/2 ton status

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    little more to it...
    rad /coolant
    tranny cooler lines
    wiring etc especially anything added by POers

    I agree I think it is very quick and easy to do on my truck.
    On other's that are closer to stock they seem to have a lot more junk to worry about and are a lot less inclined to throw away 'stuff they dont need' /forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif
     
  8. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    I was speaking of the actual front clip itself...I pulled mine after the motor was out cuz i got sick of working around the fenders and core support.

    Rene
     
  9. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

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    i could have told you that....
    he he. i just got done placing mine back in. i need to paint the motor mounts up an put them in with new mounts.
    you still got that MOO unit? or are ya gonna keep it?
    Grant
     
  10. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    It's actually hacked to pieces ($$$ out the window). It think I have MOST of the pieces left though.
     
  11. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    It's back together (last minute Sunday morning). I half-a$$ed timed it and towed a 14ft enclosed trailer 44 miles up the Bershire trail and back(removing all the furniture from my Grandmothers house since it's being sold). Had a slight accident/mishap too. On the way there I tore the front access door off my brother-in-laws trailer as it fell open going down the road. /forums/images/graemlins/mad.gif$$$$ The truck ran good, but being a short bed half ton with a basically stock 350 and 3.08's, it had a little trouble with pulling the trailer up the hills and stopping on the way down (especially with the snow we had). I should have used the 80, but I wanted to see how the 78 would run after the "surgery", and wasn't expecting snow (should've known it would with the elevation.... /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif).

    Andy, Do you have any pics. Also are you running any lift? I have ZERO lift on this rig, and that was where I was running into the problems with the stock MOO unit, and when trying to modify it to work. It just hung too low. I was thinking lift, but for plowing and what I do with it, it was not an option. Besides Michelle would have killed me! She supports modifying the 80, but not the 78 (I don't blame her either as we have alot of work to do on her 88 K5).
     
  12. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

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    now THAT is a bummer...
    is it repairable?
    Grant
     
  13. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    The good side (if there is one), is that the door and opening are OK. The door bottom bent a little, but should be able to be straightened and it has a diamond plate cover that is easily replaced. The major damage is at the bottom of the door and opening where the "piano" hinge is (now was). My brother-in-laws neighbor is a "tin-man" and is pretty good at welding and fabricating (he also has a stock pile of metal and diamond plate). He is going to look at the trailer today or tomorrow and see what he can do. Hopefully he can fix it. I'll pay either way as it was MY fault, but I would rather pay him than a dealer as it should be a lot less.
     
  14. Waxer

    Waxer 1/2 ton status Author

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    The one I built has worked out GREAT. Here are some pics.

    [​IMG]

    and

    [​IMG]

    and finally

    [​IMG]


    This was another one of my first projects I did a couple years back. Its not as pretty as the MOO unit, but the design is essentially the same.

    My stock X-member was cracked all to hell and I had the front clip off there cause I was installing a new motor and I figured it was as good a time as any to do the frame work which consisted of removing rivets and installed grade 8 bolts in its place, as well as strengthening the frame near the steering box (thanks to ORD) and adding another X-member up front near the leaf spring eyes.
     
  15. K10ANDYKHAMNIC

    K10ANDYKHAMNIC 1/2 ton status

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    yes i have pics but i cannot post them now cuz im at work . at lunch ill try to post some . mine is almost exactly the same as waxers tho it may be a bit farther back . which sux bcuz i cant get the pan off ,but thats another story . oh and im running lift but im not sure how much ,it could be 4"-6" im guessing .
     
  16. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Looks nice, but it still would have the same clearance issues as the MOO one without a lift. If I had a lift, the one you designed would work perfect. Nice motor mounts too, I have the Red ones on the 78 /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  17. K10ANDYKHAMNIC

    K10ANDYKHAMNIC 1/2 ton status

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  18. Leadfoot

    Leadfoot 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Now that probably would have worked for me.......Oh well. Too late now. But thanks for the pic. It may come in handy down the road.
     

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