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The "I thought you said it was only going to cost....." 1991 Jimmy Build


A little background on this build. My primary mountain truck/daily driver, a 2011 Dodge 2500 Cummins has been proving a monumental pain due to ongoing emissions issues. While I am fighting with Chrysler on that vehicle (not really wanting to buy a brand new truck since I have a paid for pile o' Cummins sitting in the driveway), I decided that I needed to make a reliable daily driver that will double as a mountain truck because I snowboard a lot. This build will be focused directly on that purpose and while very capable offroad..... that will very much be secondary to drivability. I have a very well built restomod CJ7 that will be my trail rig (it also is dual purpose for drivability but very built), so the K5 will be much more focused on daily driver duties, forest road camping expeditions, and tons and tons of time in the Cascades and likely back to the Sierras.

I grew up with square bodies, gramps always had pickups..... my uncle always had K5s, my other uncle a first gen Jimmy and still to this day when I sit in one and look at the dash I am in a time machine and taken back to being a kid exploring the woods with my uncles or grandpa. Naturally I have always maintained a love for these truck and several years ago, living in Reno I bought a 76 C10 4x4 (why it wasn't a k10 I still don't understand but it was a c10 but with 4 wheel drive from the factory..... some funky way it was ordered I am guessing) as my snowboarding chariot. It was an amazing mountain truck. That thing saw more white out blizzards and powder days than could be counted. It saved me endless times in dire scenarios. Old Blue (classic baby blue with the white two tone) was quite frankly amazing and only replaced because I needed a modern tow vehicle. I am sure that beast is still mobbing around California today and I won't be surprised if I see it pop up here one day. PS to the buyer if I do, you still owe me $200.... :)

Fast forward to my current needs, I decided that a K5 would be the perfect candidate for what I needed. Since I also was focusing on functional simplicity but wanted something that would drive well at varying elevations, I targeted the later fuel injected models in my search and found a decent candidate on here. Current state which is continuing to evolve..... I have a '91 GMC Jimmy K5. Stripped as stripped gets because it was some sort of fleet vehicle (forest service, department of interior, something like that based on the radio equipment that had obviously been installed in its past life) and relatively unmolested and with good sheet metal to start with. As with anything almost 30 years old..... there were some warts.... but most of those either have been or are in the process of being rectified.

Hopefully you all like how this thing comes together. I am thus far quite pleased..... but as the title notes and as many of you have personal experience with..... the wife just shakes her head. :) Thankfully she is a lovely patient woman and puts up with me...... so anyways onto some pics..... I'll start with where it currently sits and move back a few for some play by play.


Trim Level
Originally tan, being swapped to black
Factory Options
350/5.7 TBI
Transfer Case
Borgeson steering shaft with vibration reducing u-joint, Red Head Gear box, ORD weld on brace and bolt on brace, WFO heavy duty tierod, rancho stabilizer
Alcan springs @ stock height but custom leaf packs, ORD shackles, ORD greasable shackle bolts, Bilsteins
Corp 10 bolts, stock 3.73s
US Wheels Steel Matte Black 17s
Wrangler Duractrac 285/70/r17
Stock Tan single stage

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