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Old 11-20-2011, 12:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
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just another Crew Cab Tow rig build up (ctd)(shortbed)

I traded a set of tires a while back to a friend for a few old trucks.

I have 3 kids and needed a rig to haul my toys to the trails and everything else. I cannot afford a new crew cab chevy, so why not build an old one the way I want. Afterall, chevy didn't offer a truck like I want back in the day.

So here is my plan:

1973 crew cab
1991 suburban front clip and doors (all power)
Dana 60 front
14 bolt or Dana 70 rear
37 inch goodyears
454-465/205 or Cummins 5spd-205
SHORTBED
big bumpers and lots of lights
Nice interior
Fully functional and under $10,000.00

I got a 1980 long bed 2wd truck, body was shot, but the frame was good.
The 1973 had a good cab, bent frame, horrible body panels

My plan is to swap the cabs, then yank out the 2wd suspension and make it 4wd.

I pulled in the trucks and swapped the cab
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Last edited by sick_sahara_yj; 11-20-2011 at 02:03 PM.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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After I got the cab swapped, I measured and cut the frame. I set the short bed on it, centered over the rear end. I measured to the back of the cab and needed to take out 14 inches of frame.

On this frame, I had a nice flat area behind the cab and under the front of the bed. When I marked where the bed bolt went, I noticed that I could cut the frame and the front bed bolts would line up with the original long bed front bolt holes.



Then I welded the frame back together. I have made several trucks into shortbeds, but this is my first crew cab. I prefer the "z" notch method personally. I still need to grind and fill some weld on the outside and make a fishmouth plate for the inside of the frame.

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Old 11-20-2011, 12:23 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Looks good. Gonna be watching this one
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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After I welded the frame back together, I set the bed on it. The front bolts went right in and lined the bed up perfectly. There is some trimming to do on the back of the bed, there is a flap of steel that hangs below the bed and lands directly on the rear crossmember of the frame. I am not going to cut the back of the frame off because I incorporate that into my bumper.

I think ill just take the plasma cutter and cut that flap off the bed.

Once I set the bed on, I stripped the doors and front clip off a suburban I had given to me. I figure Ill use it's seats as well till I get some yukon seats

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Old 11-20-2011, 12:35 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I have been messing with these old chevy trucks for a long time, then didnt for a while and forgot that they changed the hood hinges in 1981. I didnt take pics of the process, but I took a sawzall and cut the ones off the suburban then cut the 73's and grafted the suburban's into it.

This process only took about 2 hours to finish and the hood set on nicely. I thin had to drill holes in the cowl of the cab for the difference in the years.

At this point I thought about just leaving the truck 2wd, but there are places I wheel and sometimes need 4wd to get there. I also pull a backhoe and a small dozer at times. This is where I decided it needed to become 4x4.

I pulled the truck back into the shop and out came the 2wd stuff.



once all that was removed, I took some leaf spring brackets I had from ruffstuff and welded them onto the frame. I still need to gusset them up, but I need the truck to roll as soon as possible cause I dont like tying up the lift for long.



I noticed on this truck, the frame is wider where the rear of the spring shackles go, so I had to trim them in for the rear shackles to move. I used some of ruffstuffs way back shackles and installed those on the inside of the frame. This made a gusset and a spacer for the mounts. I think they work well. I also used some of their 6 inch shackles and the springs clear the frame at full compression by almost an inch.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:41 PM   #6 (permalink)
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After I installed the dually 60 front, I decided to throw in one of the big blocks I had. This one happens to be a 468 and set up for tow duties. I am really thinking about getting a cummins for fuel mileage.

With all the space outside the frame, I decided that I would like some fenderwell headers. When I found a set, I about shit myself with the cost. I looked in speedway motors and they had a header kit for 139.00 and a free shipping offer. It came with 5/16" flanges, 2 inch primaries and 3.5 inch collectors.



After a couple hours this is what I came up with on the driver's side.




Making them fit around the steering linkage was pretty easy, and the kit came with enough tubing to build it the way I wanted them. Now making the otherside match will be fun.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:49 PM   #7 (permalink)
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The fenders off the suburban were rusted out on the inside, so I got another pair of fenders. With the truck somewhat put together, I snapped a shot of this



I like how it sits, and the thought of making it a crew cab dually shortbed seemed nice. well maybe, it would look like nice.....kinda like the last dually I built






But, the truck needs a front bumper, and I want something that fits this truck. It needs an import killer front bumper, plus here in missouri, the lift laws suck

I decided to build this....
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Ill be watching. I love this kind of stuff.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:24 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I had an issue with lifting the rear. The rear spring front mount didnt hang low enough to afford the lift. To explain, a 4x4 hangar hangs much lower than the frame. I didnt want blocks in the rear, so I used a shackle reversal from ruff stuff. With 6 inch shackles, the rear sat too low and the pinnion pointed downward. I decided to make some front mounts. I have to do something quick because I just bought another shop so I dont have to share a lift.

This is what I came up with, 2x2x1/4 square tubing and 1/4 inch plate. It is far from finished, but it will get the truck on the trailer and to the new shop.






The truck is in the new shop now, I found a donor 1st gen dodge turbo cummins with intercooler, so now I am going to remove this big block and install this cummins
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:28 PM   #10 (permalink)
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this is my donor dodge. I drove it home. My wife cant believe that I am going to strip this truck just for the drive train.

This dodge has 140k miles, 5 spd np205 dana 60 front and 70 rear.

The guy I bought it from just got a new crew cab dodge and didnt really wanna sell this one, but needed the money for christmas and new tires for his wifes vehicle. So I handed hime 2500.00 before he changed his mind.




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Old 11-20-2011, 01:35 PM   #11 (permalink)
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this truck actually averages 28 mpg. I found his notebook in the glove box. Seems the fuel gauge doesnt work and he tops off the fuel everytime and logs the mileage. I am surprised by that. He kept good records of everything done to the truck. It supposedly has been turned up and so forth. Ill have to go to the shop that did the work and see exaclty what they did to it.

When driving the truck home, I did notice issues with shifting. After being turned to dieseltruckresource.com I realized that it doesnt have the nv4500; it has the getrag tranny. Luckily I can get a reman top plate for it for cheap till I decide to upgrade.

The axles have high gears in them, I was told 3.08s so Ill just keep my 4.10s in the crew cab since I plan to run those 37 inch military tires. That should put me right in the ball park of what I want.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:37 PM   #12 (permalink)
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unfortunatly the trans and transfer in the bed didnt go with the truck.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:59 PM   #13 (permalink)
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some misc pics

bed to cab distance


rear frame overhang



front bumper



front seat



total in truck so far:
cummins donor 2500
sold dodge body - ( -500)
dana 60 front - 450
14 bolt srw - came with front end
short bed - 100
front clip, doors, seats - free
material for front bumper - 200
37x12.5 x 16.5 goodyears - 400
16.5 x 10 alcoa wheels - 125
truck bodies and frames - 350 worth of trade in tires
fronts 6 inch spring - 50
misc mounts from ruffstuff - 200
fiberglass cowl induction hood - 200

total so far 4030.00

I still need:
drive shafts
brake lines
shocks
tail lights
steering drag link and high steer
windsheild
paint
new body bushings
interior
rear bumper

I think I am on track to be under my goal money amount. The body work and paint I can do myself, I am thinging of a two-tone, forrest green with metal flake from the body line down and black with metal flake everywhere else. As far as interior color, that might go black or a dark tan, bepends on what they look like against the paint.
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Last edited by sick_sahara_yj; 11-20-2011 at 02:01 PM.
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:29 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Nice build, just a note, the Dodge will have a Dana 61 in the front, do a quick search and make sure, just don't want to see someone waste some time with it.
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Old 11-20-2011, 09:52 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I looked up a dana 61 front. If I wanted to go with a 4.56 and lower gear, a spacer and a carrier is all that is needed. If I wanted to go with 4.10 gearing and higher, all that is needed is a spacer. If that front end turns out to be a dana 61 with 3.07 gears and I decide to change gears then Ill just have a spacer made. I will check the front end out when Ipull it. With it being a 93, there is no telling if it is the original front or not. I am not even sure of the gearing yet, im going off what the PO told me. Either way it has all the same knuckles and stuff.
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:26 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Not trying to be a dick, but that Dodge did not average 28mpg, no way. He must have calculated something wrong, had odometer/gear/tire size wrong. If those are the factory gears, they are not 3.08's. The dana 61, which had 3.08's only came in the auto equipped Cummins trucks without overdrive. Which if he swapped those in may have created the high number he found while calculating the mileage. Otherwise nice build you have there, keep the pics coming!
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:38 PM   #17 (permalink)
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I calculated the mileage, every stop he made for fuel he wrote the mileage and the amount of fuel, I believe it if it has the 3.08s and the 5 speed. And I have searched and there were some 3.08 5 speeds.

I don't really care either way as it is a mute point, it's all factory except for the performance tuning that was done to it and the fact that it's getting stripped and going into a crew can short bed with 4.10 gears
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:49 PM   #18 (permalink)
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That front bumper is awful. The rest is fawkin
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:51 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mvanhelden View Post
Not trying to be a dick, but that Dodge did not average 28mpg, no way. He must have calculated something wrong, had odometer/gear/tire size wrong. If those are the factory gears, they are not 3.08's. The dana 61, which had 3.08's only came in the auto equipped Cummins trucks without overdrive. Which if he swapped those in may have created the high number he found while calculating the mileage. Otherwise nice build you have there, keep the pics coming!

it's possible. We have a 93 dodge we use for the trailer Park that gets a little over 26. That's mostly because I don't drive it. the way we know it gets that is from mileage and receipts for tax purposes, so it is calculated for accuracy by our bookkeeper.

We also don't live in the mountains, so it's a lot of flat land driving.
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:56 PM   #20 (permalink)
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If you use a ring gear spacer and wheel it hard chances are you break bolts and thats a day spoiler, wasen't saying it can't be done but there a pain in the ass, stop before you start with a 61, there more trouble then there worth, just my 2 cents!
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:56 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Dont think i missed it, but how much lift dod the white chevy dually have? Tire size?
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:58 PM   #22 (permalink)
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and yes your right from the center section out its all the same.
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Old 11-22-2011, 02:49 AM   #23 (permalink)
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I don't plan to use the possible Dana 61 in my crew cab. As stated above, I already have a chevy 60 front with 4.10s in it. I am thinking about throwing that 60 in my mud racing truck since the 4.10 Dana 60 in it is too low for it.

I plan to start installing the cummins after thanksgiving.

The white dually only had 6" chevy springs and 4 inches worth of mounts in the front. There us only some added springs and a shackle reversal in the rear, no blocks.
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Old 11-22-2011, 02:51 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Also I plan to put a winch in the front and rear of this truck so that I could use it to recover my buggy or mud truck if needed. It's primary duty will be family and toy hauler. Later I'm thinking it needs some selectable
Lockers, but that will depend on where I sit with the budget
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:43 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 72blazer View Post
That front bumper is awful. The rest is fawkin
I am almost sorry you dont like it, but I'm not. I still plan to recess the center where the winch goes, add driving lights and some "d" rings. There is still some access holes to cut on the top. The bumper is far from done, but it's being built for what I like. I will post more pics of it and the rear bumper as I progress on them
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