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What has been done so far

Discussion in '1936-Present Suburban' started by Uncle Fester, Jan 14, 2007.

  1. Uncle Fester

    Uncle Fester 1/2 ton status

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    Well, I figure I will start a thread to show what I have done to my 1978 Suburban so far. I will post pictures as I can, and just FYI, this truck is my ONLY car/truck and is my families daily driver/trail runner/do every thing truck. I am building this truck slowly, while trying to support a family of 5 on less then 2000.00/month income, so I guess I am doing pretty good.

    When I got the truck, it was totally stock with a 350ci, SM465, NP205, 10b front 12b rear axles with 3.73 gears, and 265/75/16 tires on stock steel 16x7 rims.

    The first mod I made was to add 33x12.50x15 All Terrain tires on stock 15x8 rally rims.

    I didn't like the stock bucket seats that came in my truck, plus they where two differant colors so I changed them to a set of APC Super Sport seats, but didn't like them either, so out they went, and in went a set of conversion van captain seats plus a blazer center console.

    The next thing was to upgrade the exhust some. It had a 2.5" single tube exhust with a "turbo" muffler. I changed the muffler to a single chamber 2.5" MAGNA FLOW muffler (single in/dual out) with rear exiting tips. This mod was brought on after the original muffler fell off while driving down the hiway:doah: .

    The next thing I did was to replace the clutch after distroying it in the mud, I replaced it with a HAYS clutch. the shop also replaced all the u-joints on both driveshafts as NONE of them where reusable.....YIKES!:eek1:

    Next I got a deal (?) on a home made WARN classic looking bumper, paid $50.00 and my stock chrome bumper for it....now I need a winch to go in it!

    Next came new tires thanks to some Jack A$$ who sliced my tires at a local resturant, so I went with a set of four 35x12.50x15 Dunlop Radial Mud Rovers. These required some fender trimming, and sence my truck had LOTS of Chevy rust around the wells, I trimmed ALOT of metal away. I accually have room to totally flex my stock suspension with out rubbing the tires at all!

    I also never liked the stock plastic grill on these trucks, so I made my own out of a peice of expanded steel, and I also mounted a set of HELLA 500 lights behind the new grill, to protect them from rocks and tree branchs.

    I have also added a stereo system, althou it is a bit differant from most as it has NO AM, FM, Cass, or CD player. It consists of a XM radio (Sports caster) a 5 band parametric EQ, a Memphis Belle amp (75x4 plus 1100x1 5channel amp) and then out to two sets of Memphis SQ6.5s (6.5 mid/1" tweet w/crossover) and two 12" Memphis subs in a sealed box (wired at 1ohm).

    I have a 2" EZ-RIDE lift kit on the way, and also plan a few more off road lights, a 9000lb or larger winch, and maybe a Dana60/14bff swap. If I do the axle swap or not, I will be upgrading to 4.56 gears and a rear locker. I also plan on a O.D. Green with flat black trim paint job in the future.

    2bcc.jpg

    My Burban with new tires.jpg

    Bumper shot2.JPG

    Snow Pile 50.JPG

    Stereo setup2.JPG
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2007
  2. Uncle Fester

    Uncle Fester 1/2 ton status

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    Queston

    Like I said, I am considering a axle up grade for my truck, getting 4.56 gears and a locker for the rear axle.
    Should I go with the popular Dana 60 front/ 14bff rear with a detroit locker, or should I go Dana 60 front and rear and have them built with the 6 bolt pattern and a detroit soft locker, so I do not have to buy new rims/tires at the same time, or should I keep my 10b/12b and add chromoly shafts and a rear locker? I do not plan on going any larger then the 35x12.50x15s I currently have, but I guess 36s or 37s are possable....but I doubt it.
    The suburban is a daily driver (80% street) and weekend trail runner. The trails we do are mostly green, blue, and mild black trails as rated by the "Colorado Backroads & 4-Wheeldrive Trails" book. We plan to do alot of stuff like following the "Outlaw trail", the "Sante Fe trail" ect ect....very mild stuff compaired to alot of the stuff guys here seem to run.
     
  3. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    I say if money is not a big issue, go with a D60 D60 combo, with 6 lugs.
    If it is an issue, then stick with your 10/12 and go easy and don't go bigger than the 35" and only lock the rear.
    Mine survived 6 years and counting behind a 415 ft lb diesel with 35" tires and lockers front and rear but I am very carefull and don't push it when it could break.
    If money is no issue and you want the easy way, go D60/14bff and buy new rims and tires.
     
  4. bowtiepower00

    bowtiepower00 1/2 ton status

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    Sounds like you're on a budget and that you dont do anything super extreme. I would find some 4.10 or 4.56 3/4 ton axles- preferably the FF open rear so you can add a Detroit. If left open the D44/10b is fine with 35's, 37's are possible if you're easy on stuff. 4.10's and 35's is a good highway gear with no OD. The 60's sound expensive and are overkill. I would consider a 1" ORD body lift, they make rigs easier to work on. I would also say that a steering brace should be on your priority list. If you want to flex things out, go with Ford front shock towers- you'll have to trim the driver's side to run a Mech. clutch however. Speaking of clutches, I plan on doing the Hydro conversion ASAP. With a Winch you'll have a great backwoods rig. If you do go FF in the rear, shave it and consider the disk brake upgrade. A Detroit for the FF drops in the open carrier and costs around $400.

    Nice rig, I'm having a hard time building mine on an income similar to yours, and that's without kids.
     
  5. Uncle Fester

    Uncle Fester 1/2 ton status

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    Well after reading your replies, and some talking to some local 4x4 shops, I have deceided to stat with the 10b/12b combo and upgrade to 4.10 maybe 4.56 gears, chromoly axles, get the axles trussed and some heavy duty rock proof diff covers.
    As for the steering brace, I did forget to mention that is in the plans for this summer, before any more upgrades are done to the axles. I'm not sure about the zero rates, what exactly are they and who sells them?:doah:
     
  6. bowtiepower00

    bowtiepower00 1/2 ton status

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    The 10/12b should hold up pretty well, as long as you don't go any bigger than 35's. They are also quite a bit lighter. I would worry about Chromo's in the back first, the fronts will hold up pretty well open. 4.10's will be just right with the 35's for all around use, but your 3.73's will work just as well. It's not worth regearing to 4.10's and 4.56 is pretty deep for 35's and no OD. Check out Offroad Design for GM lift stuff, the first build of Wally (their shop Blazer) ran a 10b/12b combo.
     
  7. Uncle Fester

    Uncle Fester 1/2 ton status

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    Next Queston........

    New queston....

    Sence my truck is down for a few months, due to needing a new engine . . . Iam going to do some various mods while I can, One thing I am thinking of is a new rear drive shaft. The reason, I have a two peice drive shaft, with a carrier bearing in the middle, and I am thinking about changing to a one peice drive shaft . . . Thoughts anyone? My thought is one less u-joint to go bad out on the trail. I am adding a 2" all spring lift to the truck as well this summer.
     
  8. imiceman44

    imiceman44 1 ton status

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    a 2 piece keeps the driveshaft tucked in more to protect it, a one piece will be easier on Ujoints angles with a big lift.
    SO there is no better solution, just one more suitable for a special situation, you decide.
     

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