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  #2296 (permalink)  
Old 02-28-2011, 07:11 PM
TICK INSPECTOR
 
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Good luck, come back safe. don't sweat the small stuff it's just metal

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  #2297 (permalink)  
Old 02-28-2011, 07:30 PM
ShadetreeTim's Avatar
Another transplanted Okie
 

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Evilbeef,

First, thank you for serving. The wife and I appreciate your sacrifice.

Second, you have the right attitude. Everyone on this site had a first time to do everything they are currently capable of. That's a straight old truck you got there, it should be pretty easy to get it back in shape. As with most things, having the right tools can make the job easier. A cheap wirefeed would give you the ability to weld up the little bit of rust you have. Over the years I've found many uses for my little Harbor Freight wirefeed. Of course if you can borrow Bowtiez' welder, that works too.

To lower the truck, one option to consider would be to look for a dropped axle for now. If you can find one it's a bolt on part. And the brakes could be upgraded as you can afford it. Or you could always sell the axle in the future as you move on to some other suspension configuration. A properly set up dropped axle with good shocks and radial tires doesn't drive bad at all. I drove a '50 Chevy as a daily driver for several years that way.

The good thing about that primer you sprayed on is it'll sand off very easily. I've used a lot of it over the years as a temporary covering when I'm too lazy to clean my spray gun after a small job. A good primer covers better and lays smoother than spray cans ever will.

I'm looking forward to pictures of your future progress.

Tim
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  #2298 (permalink)  
Old 03-01-2011, 05:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadetreeTim
Evilbeef,

First, thank you for serving. The wife and I appreciate your sacrifice.

Second, you have the right attitude. Everyone on this site had a first time to do everything they are currently capable of. That's a straight old truck you got there, it should be pretty easy to get it back in shape. As with most things, having the right tools can make the job easier. A cheap wirefeed would give you the ability to weld up the little bit of rust you have. Over the years I've found many uses for my little Harbor Freight wirefeed. Of course if you can borrow Bowtiez' welder, that works too.

To lower the truck, one option to consider would be to look for a dropped axle for now. If you can find one it's a bolt on part. And the brakes could be upgraded as you can afford it. Or you could always sell the axle in the future as you move on to some other suspension configuration. A properly set up dropped axle with good shocks and radial tires doesn't drive bad at all. I drove a '50 Chevy as a daily driver for several years that way.

The good thing about that primer you sprayed on is it'll sand off very easily. I've used a lot of it over the years as a temporary covering when I'm too lazy to clean my spray gun after a small job. A good primer covers better and lays smoother than spray cans ever will.

I'm looking forward to pictures of your future progress.

Tim
Thanks shadtree, That is what I was trying to say.
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  #2299 (permalink)  
Old 03-02-2011, 12:50 PM
evilbeef54's Avatar
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Thanks guys, from the little i have been able to search here it looks like i might be able to get a droped axle for about $400-500 or so, this should give me a slight drop in the front, what about the rear, i have seen some people talking about flipped axel in the rear, but i have also heard that can cause issues with handeling and saftey, is this true or is there another good safe without being crazy expensive route that i can explore.

Thanks for all the info,

Doug
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  #2300 (permalink)  
Old 03-02-2011, 09:18 PM
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Flipping the axle is relatively easy and is as safe as you are good as a welder. You would need to grind off the old spring perches and weld on new ones. Setting the pinion angle is an important step, but not hard. Unfortunately flipping the axle could cause it to hit the frame, which will require notching the frame to clear. Again not a very hard job with a die grinder and a welder. I fabricated new lower shock mounts when i flipped mine and notched the frame. They seem to be working well.

How low do you want to go in the rear? You could get a couple inches just by removing a couple of the shorter helper springs in your spring pack. It would soften up your ride as well, which is not a bad thing. The original spring packs were meant to allow you to carry a heavy payload. If you are lowering it, I assume you don't care about maximum payload anyway.

Here's a picture of mine. It has a flipped axle, the smaller springs removed from the spring pack and a 28" tall tire.

Tim
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  #2301 (permalink)  
Old 03-03-2011, 03:59 PM
ogre's Avatar
the 'Duracell Project'
 
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flipping the axle will give you a 7 inch drop and is very safe.
you will need to c-notch the frame, mine is not the way to go.
i need 2 more inches of notch, my 58 hits the frame on big bumps.

if you flip the axle, also swap it out for a streetable rearend.
this is a 89 trans am.
i did add to the frame to within 1/2'' of the bed to avoid raising the bed.
i should have raised the bed...
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  #2302 (permalink)  
Old 03-03-2011, 04:03 PM
ogre's Avatar
the 'Duracell Project'
 
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very nice truck shadetree.
how much c-notch did you do?
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  #2303 (permalink)  
Old 03-03-2011, 08:50 PM
ShadetreeTim's Avatar
Another transplanted Okie
 

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Thanks Ogre, I appreciate it. I looked through my photos and couldn't find a picture of the frame notch. Weird, I would have sworn I took some. Here's a pic of the diff / frame before the notch. I basically notched halfway through the frame and boxed it fully. So far I haven't felt or heard it bottom out. I did rub the driveshaft on the crossmember though. Had to notch it as well.
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  #2304 (permalink)  
Old 03-04-2011, 03:49 PM
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the 'Duracell Project'
 
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i had to modify my x-member too. but i used a BFH to tap it up a bit.
i'm surprised you don't hit as our c-notches are similar.
my diff vent was under the frame, it got hammered by the frame and is gone now.
the diff vent made a clunk, now i hit rubber bumps stops.
the back of my truck jumps up on rr tracks
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  #2305 (permalink)  
Old 03-04-2011, 04:17 PM
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Steering column

Anyone have any good choices of more affordable than an ididit column . I am wanting to keep the stock dash key location .
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  #2306 (permalink)  
Old 03-04-2011, 04:26 PM
ogre's Avatar
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nice panel 55
that didn't have diamond windows in back at one time did it?

if you want a stock key location use an old van column
no key no shifter on them
i used an 89 astro van but mine has key & shifter on it
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  #2307 (permalink)  
Old 03-04-2011, 08:07 PM
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My column is out of a 65 Riviera. No key on column, has single bulb turn signal switch (brake lights route through switch). Perfect length. Probably way more rare than a van column though. Funny part is, the most comfortable position is straight, I never use the tilt. That third lever looks cool though.
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  #2308 (permalink)  
Old 03-06-2011, 01:15 AM
ShadetreeTim's Avatar
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Now this my friends is what I built this truck for. Well, not exactly just to go wine tasting today, but to enjoy driving it.
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  #2309 (permalink)  
Old 03-06-2011, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadetreeTim
Now this my friends is what I built this truck for.
wino! when in rome....
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  #2310 (permalink)  
Old 03-15-2011, 07:31 AM
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Rear axle replacement ?

Question for those who have changed to an F body (3rd gen) rear axle. Have you seen any durability problems with this style? I have an two axle types available for cheap / free to put in my 56 3100. The truck will see occasional towing use (small boat) so I don't want to put in anything too light duty. I'm not into the speed freak thing any more. So no clutch dumps at 5K RPM. Specs: 283 with mild cam, T5 trans, stock height, will either do a front disc conversion on the straight axle or camaro clip when I change the rear.
Axle #1- 1987 GTA 9 bolt borg warner 'aussie' 3.27 gear, posi, disc brake.
Pros- 7.875'' ring gear stronger than a normal 3rd gen axle. correct 4.75 bolt pattern. rear disc, compact center section (bed flood clearance)
Cons- limited production(replacement parts). cone type posi wears quickly. disc adjustment is quirky, possibly hard past life in the Trans Am
Axle #2-96 Chevy B body (Caprice) 3.23 gear, posi. drum or disc(has both types)
Pros-8.5'' ring gear, lots of available replacement parts,
Cons- 5 on 5 pattern. Will have to redrill axles and rotors. Large center section (bed floor clearance), possibly hard past life in cop car
What do yall think? 3 rd gen Camaro kinda scares me. I had one and put 3 rear diffs in mine (plus 2 transmissions and a motor).
Cal
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