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  #436 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 11:30 AM
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Dave real bummer on the problem on the disk brakes.When you get to drive it again you will find it was worth the trouble.The old drum brakes were kind of spooky in traffic but the disks will make it stop on a dime.With the high performance motor the disks are a must have.The only problem I had was one of the rotors was a little warped so I need to have it turned.It is minor so it is annoying but not a problem.

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  #437 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 04:00 PM
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55 still alive

thankss DD. my question is this. what is the best front frame clip to graft to 55 chevy frame.for susp,and power steering.any opinions on the use of an 80,s truck. i have ruled out S10.any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks john s
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  #438 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 04:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john sekulich
thankss DD. my question is this. what is the best front frame clip to graft to 55 chevy frame.for susp,and power steering.any opinions on the use of an 80,s truck. i have ruled out S10.any help would be greatly appreciated. thanks john s

I used a 76 Trans Am subframe on mine, it fits very nice with a little cutting. I think any 2nd gen Camaro or Firebird subframe would work. Good luck on your project!
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  #439 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 06:32 PM
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1955 2nd series Chevy Pick Up
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by john sekulich
hey dd are you still around?im restoring a 55 1/2 ton and have lots of questions about frame swaps or front clips. i would love to talk to someone whoes been there done that. my name is john and im new around here.
Hi John and welcome. I have a 55 2nd series Chevy truck. I kept the straight front axle as I like the look of it. If you check out my journal you can see some changes I have made...some of these might help you. But feel free to ask any of us for help. I have gotten a ton of help here.

Later James
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  #440 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmaggard
Problem with the calipers today. One side wouldn't go on. I got to measuring and the side that wouldn't go on was almost .25 of an inch narrower than the caliper that fit. I have some pics in the journal. Disappointed I didn't get it all back together today. Came really close though. I got this kit from CPP and not too happy with it. Pins had to be ground down to get them through the backing plate and into the caliper. Caliper won't fit rotor on one side. Instructions were very vague, had to switch out backing plates because I mounted them on the wrong sides. The only difference in the plates was a very small bend that either makes them the right size when you mount them on the right side, or the wrong size. No distinction between the two and no reference to that issue in the instructions. I know how to do it now though.
Pictures in my journal.
Dave
Dave I had some minor problems also...I finally figured out that if everything fit first time out everyone would have old trucks and cars. So any change is "custom" and custom means most things have to be tweaked...at least in my case. You will LOVE the disk brake upgraqde!!
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  #441 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 06:39 PM
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i bet this is the longest thread going, keep on trucking
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  #442 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by gator412
Dave I had some minor problems also...I finally figured out that if everything fit first time out everyone would have old trucks and cars. So any change is "custom" and custom means most things have to be tweaked...at least in my case. You will LOVE the disk brake upgraqde!!
You know I don't mind the changes I can make and tweak... I just hate it when I'm goin to town and find out I've got a wrong part sent to me. I double checked again today and there is almost 1/2 inch different in the two castings. Both calipers should be exactly the same just different sides. Anyway, a call to CPP should take care of it. I did get the front end together today less the one caliper and got her down off of the jack stands for the first time in two months. I love the stance. When I get the weight of the engine in her she will sit just right. 3 inch drop axle with a 1 inch drop spring. I'll try and roll it outside tomorrow to clean up under and I'll get a pic. This thread has been not only a help with all the knowledge, but a great way to keep up with my own project. Hope they leave it going.
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  #443 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 09:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmaggard
This thread has been not only a help with all the knowledge, but a great way to keep up with my own project. Hope they leave it going.
Maybe Jon will give us our own 55-59 truck
heading so all this knowledge can be better accessed and separated. There seems to be enough of us. I vote for Double Dick to be the moderator.
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  #444 (permalink)  
Old 02-25-2007, 09:51 PM
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Bythe way I bought a Ford 9" rearend for my truck. I need to take some pics. It is still in the back of my truck.
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  #445 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 07:28 AM
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It's been just in the last few years that I've been able to spend the time with this passion of mine. I've always loved old cars and trucks but never had the time or money to pursue them other than looking at someone elses accomplishments. When you don't do this for a living it's hard sometimes to justify the money for all the tools and equipment needed to do the work yourself. A few months ago I wouldn't have thought to clean and weld a firewall, install a new front end with disc brakes, but now that I've done it, it wasn't near as difficult as I had imagined it being. The input and knowledge from this forum has been as valuable a tool as the welder, the torches, the aircompressor. I could have got it all done without all these but man, the difficulty level would have been in outer space. And the great thing is everyone is willing to share. One of the things I look forward to every few days is taking pictures of what I've got done so that I can put it in my journal. This whole site is a great idea. I hope I can help someone else out there with some bit of knowledge I've retained. Now it's time to call CPP and get a grip on those calipers.
Dave
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  #446 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 06:01 PM
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Hello. I'm new to this bulletin board so I'm sorry if this has been asked a thousand times but I'm at work and can't read all the post's. I have a 58 Chevy short bed fleetside I'm getting ready to restore. I drove this truck for a couple of years before parking it 15-20 years ago. Two thing's I'm going to do before I ever drive it again is power steering and power brakes.I did see on an post that mid 70's camero and firebird front end's fit nice, I also have seen kit's for around $2500.00 new on the net. Any advise ? I have a welder but not a torch (yet). Thanks Jim
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  #447 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 06:17 PM
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Hi Herb and welcome to hotrodders. There are a few ways to get power steering and power brakes. You have to decide which way will work for you and what you want. You can weld on a front section from a donor car, can get a kit that you weld in or bold in the cross member for independent suspension that will also give you PS & PB. Or you can go the route I took, which was to preserve the straight front axle and get a PS kit and a PB kit. I like the look of the straight axle so I went that way. I am sure DD (Doubledick) and Dmaggard will jump in here to had there knowledge. So do some research and decide want you want then go for it. If you look at my journal on the 1st few pages you will see my PB and PS install. I would recommend to also put disk brakes in. That way you can actually stop the truck quickly. I know there are several of us that can't stress enough how well disk brakes help these old trucks.

Look at the 1st page of dmaggard's journal for a disk brake install. If Doubledick and Chrisape HAD a journal I COULD direct you to there projects... (ok that was a shameless plug to get them to start their journals.)
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  #448 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 06:37 PM
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Yes I do want disc for sure. The first thing I'm looking at is $$$ the next is how hard it would be to cut and weld a front end, I used to be a welder and I would buy a torch but by the time you buy and rebuild a used front end, or rebuild the front end I have, how much are you saving -- $$$ verses time
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  #449 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 09:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herb Nurple
Yes I do want disc for sure. The first thing I'm looking at is $$$ the next is how hard it would be to cut and weld a front end, I used to be a welder and I would buy a torch but by the time you buy and rebuild a used front end, or rebuild the front end I have, how much are you saving -- $$$ verses time
That's what you have to look at. Almost any front end you get from a donor car will need rebuilt and by the time you run all the numbers, or when I did, I didn't save much going the donor car route. A lot of that has to do with what you have access to. I'm with Gator. I love the old straight axle trucks. I opted to go with the lowered axle, new everything on the front. I'm keeping the old steering box. Adding the power disk brakes. I also lowered the springs an inch. Found a great company that builds them any way you want. A lot has to do with your game plan. First you have to decide which way you want to go. There is plenty of help here. Everyone on this post, and on this site has been a great asset to me. You have found one of the greatest tools in helping you build your truck. All these guys who have and are doing it.
Welcome....

By the way.... any of you do the tie rod and tie rod end upgrade? How tight do you torque the new tie rod ends into the steering arms?

Dave
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  #450 (permalink)  
Old 02-26-2007, 09:32 PM
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Howdy, Herb N. Nice to see you join in. My toy is a '59, big back window, stepside; I've owned it since 1971, rebuilt parts of it several times, and let it sit for the last ten years. Plans are afoot, though.

$$$ is the primary consideration for most of us, I'm sure. I've been "researching" for a long time, an have found that there are three approaches to resto-rodding these things, and most of it deals with the front ends.

One way is to retain the basic "freight wagon" suspension, and improve it; you can do this in increments, and usually keep the truck on the road between segments. Each major part of updating a solid axle seems to cost about the same - between three and four hundred bucks; disc brakes = appr. 4oo, power steering conversion = appr. 400, power brakes, lowering, dropped axle = 400 each, dropped springs = 2 to 400. Get it all finished, just for the basic stuff, you're in for 16 to 20 Benjamins; but it is usually in smaller pieces, and easier to handle.

Doing a Camaro/Firebird, or any other clip, may set you back 200 to 1000 for the clip, then several hundred to rebuild and/or improve/update it, then the work involved in cutting and welding, adapting, etc. - when all is said and done, you are out some 16 to 20 Bens, again.

Same thing for a crossmember conversion - 15 to as much as 30, depending on how elaborate you want to get; and with these last two, you are out of commission for the duration of the project.

It all depends on your wants, needs, abilities, and pocket depth. (Doesen't everything?? ) Stick around; there are a lot of good projects going on here, and many very talented builders, with a broad spectrum of knowledge and experience.
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