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Tahoe Body swap?

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by Cavalry, Dec 30, 2001.

  1. Cavalry

    Cavalry 1/2 ton status

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    OK here is what I'm thinking since my body will be just about shot come spring time and I have a small fortune in my driveline/suspension. How about swapping on a body from a 95ish 2 door tahoe/yukon on my frrame. Yeah I know I wont be able to call it a blazer any more but having a solid axle on that bodystyle might be pretty cool. Just checked on prices I can get a 4x2 tahoe for about 7K. I figure it would take about 3K not including my labor to redo my body or find a better tub and repaint that. So after I sell the unused parts off the tahoe and the three unrusted blazer body parts I have I shold not be in too far. Whats everyone think

    TREAD VIOLENTLY!!!
    Luke
    84 K5
     
  2. Nonesuch

    Nonesuch 1/2 ton status

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    i would buy a "new to you" blazer in great shape and swap the drivetrain from the old one to the new one and the new ones drivetrain to your old blazer. then sell the old one for some of your money back. probably wouldnt cost you near as much to go that way!

    Austin, Texas K5'er
     
  3. Cavalry

    Cavalry 1/2 ton status

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    That was the original plan....been looking at trucks. Everything in this area is rotten. I have been going further and further south and keep finding the same rotten junk. Around here is not how much you want to pay for a solid truck its how far you want to drive a decent truck home. My truck with stock stuff on it would be lucky to get $1500 in this area. I would expect to pay 4-5K for a decent rust free early truck. Most likely since it at a minimum is 11years old would still need bodywork/paint.

    TREAD VIOLENTLY!!!
    Luke
    84 K5
     
  4. chevyboy24598

    chevyboy24598 1/2 ton status

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    I would do it.

    Rust=Good
    <a target="_blank" href=http://www.bodatious.com> bodatious </a>
    <a target="_blank" href=http://mywebpage.netscape.com/chevyman24598/home.html> my site </a>
     
  5. tRustyK5

    tRustyK5 Big meanie Staff Member Super Moderator GMOTM Winner Author

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    I think it would be a tough swap to do. Nothing is impossible but the Tahore is quite diferent. It has a longer wheelbase, and the Tahore frame is a lot wider than the Blazers. All the body mounting points would require some serious head scratching. You might end up with a big body lift just to have the floors clear the drivetrain...especially using a 2WD donor. The 2WD would not have any T-case hump in the floor, the 4WD version would have the T-case hump...but it would be biased the wrong way becuase the IFS rigs are all driver side output.

    Maybe send white_knight a pm, she and her hubby swapped an S-10 body onto their K5 frame. They might give you a hint for how much fabrication you might be in for.

    Rene

    <font color=green>Dyslexics of the world...UNTIE!</font color=green>
    <a target="_blank" href=http://coloradok5.com/gallery/project_T2> tRusty pics...</a>
     
  6. Cavalry

    Cavalry 1/2 ton status

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    Swapping bodies doesent scare me much. I live for fabricating challenges! For some reason I was thinking that the later ones (112") were the same as the K5 (106 about) hmmm that puts a serious damper on this plan. Thats a bunch of work moving axles or worse yet moving the wheel wells....Got the idea yesterday at the mall. Spotted a lifted 89' PU on a early one ton frame. The body mounts looked simple enough to fabricate. Hmmm....maybe a really short stepside bed..........

    TREAD VIOLENTLY!!!
    Luke
    84 K5
     
  7. ChevyCaGal

    ChevyCaGal 3/4 ton status

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    You going to do any serious wheeling in it? Just curious. Friend has a Tahoe that got rearended. Not a lot of damage but it was $4000 to fix it! Pretty penny! If you wheel it expect damage to be very $$$$ to repair!

    &lt;&gt;&lt;<a target="_blank" href=http://www.chevycagal.homestead.com/steph.html>Steph's Webpage</a>&gt;&lt;&gt;
    Suck Fumes Ford Boy
    I'm in shape.... round is a shape......
     
  8. bigk

    bigk 1/2 ton status

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    What about mounting your running gear to the 2by Tahoe? You'd probably still need a body lift, but just mount the front axle, tranny and transfer case on it and you 'll get all the fabrication fun you could ask for. Off Road Unlimited has kits for mounting straight axles and they might be able to give you some hints on making crossmembers for the case. I've often thought about a 2door straight axle Tahoe just because of the lack of rust and the extra room inside and wider back seat. Besides, it would be unique. It's just too bad you can't take the top off.

    Karl
    Temporarily Unemployed Underwear Model
    87 3/4 ton
     
  9. Chris Demartini

    Chris Demartini 1/2 ton status

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    <font color=blue>Put a 73-87 pickup cab on your blazer frame and build a flatbed. you get to keep the nose parts you have and its cheaper. Dump trucks and other heavy duty trucks had the same cab as the pickups so finding one should be easy. I've seen straight cabs with doors and glass go for as low as $300. You just need the crossmember off a pickup where the back of the cab mounts to
     
  10. pcorssmit

    pcorssmit 1/2 ton status

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    If you're going to do the swap, I think the way to do it is start out with a 2wd late model, and keep the 2wd frame and convert it to straight axle 4x4. You'd probably have to swap to a 4x4 trans tunnel, not sure though. The frames are quite different, I don't think the later model body would fit too well on the older frame.

    Pete

    '83 K5, 350 TBI (ex 6.2), 700R4, NP208, Dana 60/14 bolt, 4.56s, Detroits, 3" lift, 15-39.5x15 TSLs
    '97 Dodge 2500 4x4 CC LB Sport, Cummins 5 spd
     
  11. mpascino

    mpascino 1/2 ton status

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    Ever consider a fiberglass body or a bummer kit? Either way, the bodys will out last you or I. I would like to give the bummer kit a try one day when all the mods to the blazer are done, which realisticaly will be never.......[​IMG].
    Mike

    The jeep eater ......[​IMG]
     
  12. do the straight axle conversion on the tahoe. i know sandman500 and brians60 are both going to do this on late model rigs. i think it would be killer- new bodystyle with straight axle heavyduty drivetrain. i think there would be less fabbing this way then putting the body on your old frame. keep us posted!

    <font color=blue> Experience enables you to recognize a mistake when you make it again.

    </font color=blue>
     
  13. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    heck yeah, if u have $7k to blow, spend half that and get a bummer kit. I dunno if I like the style of the thing that much, but the massive loss on weight is VERY attractive, especially to anyone with a small block. =p

    J


    See the on-going build up of my '85 Jimmy! <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/jekbrown>http://community.webshots.com/user/jekbrown</a>
     
  14. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    heck yeah, if u have $7k to blow, spend half that and get a bummer kit. I dunno if I like the style of the thing that much, but the massive loss in weight is VERY attractive, especially to anyone with a small block. =p

    J


    See the on-going build up of my '85 Jimmy! <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/jekbrown>http://community.webshots.com/user/jekbrown</a>
     
  15. Cavalry

    Cavalry 1/2 ton status

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    I dont think I would ever wheel this truck....I already have a dedicated trail rig. It will mostly be for plowing and beating around in. I am so sick of my winter truck looking like a POS. Not that I really care what other people think but they kinda shake their heads when they find out I have probably $6K of parts in it and can see through most of the body. I have investigated fiberglass. Sure sounds nice but EXPENSIVE. I have done CJ fiber swaps its pretty labor intensive not only cutting all the holes but sanding out all the waves in the body. The flatbed idea would probably not work for me....I like having the covered space in the back and having a back seat. I dont own a tahore yet so dont really know what I am going to do with this truck...I have all winter to watch her dissappear and think about it.

    TREAD VIOLENTLY!!!
    Luke
    84 K5
     
  16. bigk

    bigk 1/2 ton status

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    Are they doing the conversions on Tahoes or pickups? I'd really like to have an extended cab, 96 or newer, with a solid axle, and talking to someone who's done it would be nice. Does anyone know of a site that is dedicated to straight axle converted trucks? Maybe Steve ought to put a section on this one for it. Heck, its still fullsize Chevys. Just a thought.

    Karl
    Temporarily Unemployed Underwear Model
    87 3/4 ton
     
  17. 79ChevySB

    79ChevySB 1/2 ton status

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    I think that you have a great idea! One thing to remember is that the newer Tahoe has a stronger frame, due to the IFS that most of these trucks came with. The IFS required the 4x4 Blazers, Tahoes, and trucks needed the extra meat on the frame due to there extra weight and suspension. Just something to think about. Im planning on doing a solid axle swap on my Blazer myself and I think that the late model stuff would look killer with a solid axle. Good luck.
     
  18. MXmastermike

    MXmastermike 1/2 ton status

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    Have you considered going all bondo? I have a friend who could probably build you a bondo door panel, and maybe even bondo rocker panels. I'll see what he has to say about it.

    -mxmastermike
     
  19. lt1yj

    lt1yj 1/2 ton status

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    I think you should swap your parts onto a 2wd or 4wd '92 or newer Tahoe. Below are more ramblings on the subject.

    A friend of mine did the straight axle swap on an '88 fullsize truck. He used a '79 Ford Dana 60 to replace the IFS. He came up with a set of bolt on brackets in the front that mount to the frame using the bumper bolts, tow hook mounts, and I think he drilled 1 more.

    He used rear spring hangers and shackles from an '88-98 vintage truck and drilled the frame and bolted them in place. It works out to the correct spacing for a pre '79 Ford Dana 60 (31.5"). He used 6" skyjacker soft ride springs front and rear. He also swapped a 14 bolt in at the same time.

    He had to cut off the lower control arm mounts and fabricate a panhard bar and shock mounts that required cutting and welding on the frame. He did not add any stiffeners to the frame and it's been wheeled almost every weekend for the past 5 years with 40 swampers and 44 boggers with no frame cracks.

    I have a '92 fullsize Blazer that I will be doing a similar swap to this spring. If you look in the papers now they are running $7-9K for a truck with high miles but good body.

    There are a couple straight axle swap trucks running around here with Chevy 60's on them. One for sure swapped in a 400/205 combo. I don't know the spacing on a Chevy 60 but the swaps looked clean with similar use of the rear spring hanger/shackle setup I described earlier.

    Post some pictures as you go!
     
  20. Cmoe

    Cmoe 1/2 ton status

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    Here are my plans.... A 4x2 Tahoe and adding a
    T-case, Strait axle from a K-5...... Insurance and Registration will be cheaper than a 4x4......As for moving the Tahoe body over to k-5.......You'll need to add the emission for the Tahoe .... Loads of fun..... Some people go back to something older to get away from emission testing.......

    C'moe

    Kill Roy was here!
     

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