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Old 05-25-2009, 01:19 PM
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1968 4x4 conversion

Hello. I've been researching my options and picking up a few hints here and there but nothing specific. What I'm dealing with is a 3/4 ton 1968 Chevy 2wd pickup with a great body. What I want to to is convert it to 4wd. I have a 1976 3/4 ton with good differentials. What would be the best way to approach this? Will I have any significant problems with adding a front differential to the 68? I don't have a 4x4 69-72 to rob parts from. Also, the swing arm suspension. Possible difficulties?
The next option would be to put the 68 body on the 76 chassis. I heard that there are differences in wheel base and I'd rather not modify the frame. What would you guys suggest? Thanks.

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Old 05-25-2009, 01:52 PM
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Did that several years a go and we just swapped bodies...at the time we had a 58 cab and box and a later Suburban with good running gear..we put the 58 cab on the burb chassis..I think doing what you contemplate would be the easiet for you to just put the 68 cab on the 76 chassis..Have to change body mounts and measure the wheelbase of the 76 to see if it matches or is close to the wheelbase of the 68..

Sam
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Old 05-25-2009, 04:06 PM
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I second what OMT says, the frames, crossmembers and front end are different enough from 1/2 ton 2wd to 3/4 ton 4wd to not mess with the conversion on the 2 wd. If the frame is longer, it's easier to shorten the 4 wd frame than it is to remove all the crossmembers, fab new leaf spring mounts, swap transfer case mounts, etc..
I did the conversion on a Ford 2wd to 4wd , having a 71 2wd cab and a 76 4wd frame and looked at it for a long time before I decided to just swap cabs.

I have pondered the same swap on a 69 chevy 1/2 ton 2wd, and decided it was easier to swap cabs on that one as well. When I told my customer what it would cost, he decided to just buy a 4 wd....oh well.

Either way, you will want to keep the trans tunnel from the 4wd, or find the one that bolts in from a 68 4wd, or 4 speed equipped truck.

I'm not saying it can't be done, but it is alot of work either way, just less work to swap cabs. You get a better frame with the 3/4 ton anyway.

Later, mikey
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Old 05-26-2009, 12:56 PM
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the only problem with using a 73-up chassis for a 72 older body is that the wheelbase changed in 73 to longer length.

on the longbeds it went from 127 to 131.5

but it is still the better way to go because the frames are much different from 2wd to 4x4 in the front half.

you will have ot modify many things and cut many rivets and rob brackets and little things from the 4x4 and also drill the big through bolt holes for the front shackle bolts and also rad support brackets need swapped and more.

good luck
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Old 05-26-2009, 02:32 PM
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Thanks for the input guys. Much appreciated. I've done several automatic to manual trans conversions and engine swaps and I'm confident in my fabrication ability. I'll have to do some serious contemplating. I also have an 86 cab I might put on the 76 chassis. The 76 body is SHOT. Thanks again for your advice.
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Old 05-26-2009, 02:39 PM
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If you have the confidence of your fabrication skills and needed to alter the wheelbase say to make a shortbed truck out of it..cut the frame at a 45 degree angle behind the transfer case..(keep all the mounts and crossmember intact and then cut out the necessary amount from the left over rear section weld the sections back together and box the welded area..we did this on some farm trucks where we needed either a longer or shorter truck and it worked out fine..

Sam
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Old 05-27-2009, 02:56 PM
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try checking out Chuckstruck.net go to the web board and then go to riders rigs. they build that stuff all the time.
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Old 05-29-2009, 10:05 AM
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Thanks again guys.
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