The "Camper Special" build thread - Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum
 
Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum  

Go Back   Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum > Brand Specific Tech > Chevy
Notices

Reply
 
Share Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-30-2011, 05:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
The "Camper Special" build thread

Well, been lurking around Pirate for a few years now, have learned a lot through the PBB and my own trial and error, and figure it's about time for me to start my own build thread. Original plan was to build a simple trail rig that I could use as a first learning project. That was about 3 years ago, and it is finally starting to come together. So without further ado...

1978 Chevy Camper Special. Bought from a local farmer with 46,000 original miles. 14 bolt, 10 bolt, NP203, TH400, 350ci.

Started with trimming fenders and bolting on some 35s.
Attached Images
    
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 05:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Next was get rid of the flat bed, shackle flip and 52" spring swap up front.
Attached Images
   
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old 07-30-2011, 05:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Wheel base was obviously going to be way to long for Indiana trails, so moved the rear up to give me 108" WB. Chopped the excess frame. Welded the 14 bolt, shaved it, and slapped some disc brakes on.
Attached Images
   
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 05:58 PM   #4 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Gave her some boatsides, lost the front doghouse, threw in a fuel cell and toolbox, then stood back and marveled at my frame flex.
Attached Images
    
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:02 PM   #5 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Needed a cage before I got too far, so got some help from my buddy keepviper13 and bent some tube!
Attached Images
     
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Re-centered my H1 beadlocks using C&M Performances centers and rock rings, and ran some crappy HUMVEE tires for a while.
Attached Images
     
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:15 PM   #7 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
I wheeled it for a season and had a blast. Found some weak points, discovered how crappy GM's push-pull steering design was, and took some poser pics.
Attached Images
     
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Since the stock steering wasn't going to cut it, and I knew the 10 bolt was running on borrowed time, I quickly picked up a dana 60 and started working on it. I pieced together a full hydro setup using a 8" single ended cylinder from tractor supply (cheap enough that I can afford to carry a spare) and PSC components for the steering valve, reservoir, high flow pump. Also added an aluminum cooler and tractor filter unit to keep everything clean and cool.

When I swapped in the 60, I decided to stretch the front end a bit. I redid all of the cheesy spring mounts from the first time I swapped in the 52" springs, and added about 4.5" to the wheelbase. Moving the front forward gave me much better weight distribution, along with better approach angles. It also gave me clearance to the firewall to get away with some bigger tires for the future.
Attached Images
     
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Member # 150680
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 889
nice to see another indiana build! Sub'd
__________________
75 k20 350/350/203, 14bff, dana 44, 63"/52" 39.5 tsl

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=972762"]My Build[/URL]

[COLOR="Red"][URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1029789"]Chevy Build Thread List[/URL][/COLOR]
muddindog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:35 PM   #10 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
...so fast forward to the past 2 months. Decided the front end tube lines just weren't cutting it, and would not allow me to mount an 8274 that I had picked up a few years back, so we took to cutting it all up.

Oh, and I found a deal on some 42" TSLs.
Attached Images
  
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:40 PM   #11 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
...and here was our first attempt at rolled tube. We had the harbor freight tube roller with Swag's dies. After about an hour of trying to roll 1-3/4" and having bloody hands and only about 5 degrees of roll angle, we turned our attention to finding an easier way.

Found an old steering driveshaft, welded a bolt to it, chucked it up in the lathe, and cut a the glory hole in the wall for clearance. Worked like a charm!

A glimpse of the future when I get around to skinning everything.
Attached Images
    
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 06:50 PM   #12 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
...and finally, here is how she sits today after making the voyage run with hydro/60 in place at the UMC down at the badlands in Attica, IN last weekend. I couldn't believe how nice it was to actually be able to steer!

Come a long way, still have a long way to go. Right now, I'm accumulating parts to put a 203/205 doubler together this winter. If lucky, I want to 4-link the rear this winter as well. I have it all laid out already in the calculator, just need funds to continue on.
Attached Images
     
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 07:00 PM   #13 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Turns out the 42s put just a little more strain on everything. Found this after making a pretty good climb in the rocks last weekend.

Looks like I'm going to be replacing some springs and building an anti-wrap bar for the rear. Kinda sucks since I am planning to 4-link it in a few months anyway. Oh well, I can afford leaves and anti-wrap now to get me back up and going.
Attached Images
   
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 07:00 PM   #14 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Member # 156326
Posts: 135
Looks real good.
bigandrich44 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 07:05 PM   #15 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Member # 150680
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 889
You can get a set of springs at the indy pic a part for around 50 bucks. That's where i got mine at.
__________________
75 k20 350/350/203, 14bff, dana 44, 63"/52" 39.5 tsl

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=972762"]My Build[/URL]

[COLOR="Red"][URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1029789"]Chevy Build Thread List[/URL][/COLOR]
muddindog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 07:12 PM   #16 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by muddindog
You can get a set of springs at the indy pic a part for around 50 bucks. That's where i got mine at.
Thanks, I should be able to find them at the Ft. Wayne take-a-part which will be even closer to me. I haven't had a chance to go out and scour the local boneyards yet, but I know they have some old chevys laying around with what I need. The yards around me though will try to charge me some stupid price for them...
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 08:06 PM   #17 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Member # 183091
Location: Livingston tx
Posts: 129
truck looks good man, i like it!
__________________
Rigless
03 gmc lb7 4x4
Whitesnake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2011, 09:49 PM   #18 (permalink)
Registered User
 
NorCal_Chris's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Member # 140551
Location: Sacramento CA
Posts: 890
this build is on point. Cant wait to see more.
__________________
adfasd
NorCal_Chris is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2011, 01:50 PM   #19 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Got a lockright on the way for the front end, will be here later this week.

Progress has been slow lately on the rig, work has been crazy. I just accepted a new job last week, so starting 3 weeks from now, my daily drive time will be decreased from 2 hours/day to 24 minutes round trip! Extra time to work on junk...and the extra pay should help fund some goodies too
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2011, 05:33 PM   #20 (permalink)
Registered User
 
MTMike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Member # 42806
Location: Billings, Montana
Posts: 200
Nice build. I especially like the rolled tube fenders
__________________
73-87 Chevy crew cab, 4' box, 42" TSLs, H1's, 383 Stroker, 465/203/205, Tons
MTMike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2011, 08:53 PM   #21 (permalink)
Limestone Cowboy
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Member # 186604
Location: Thibodaux, Louisiana
Posts: 1,181
Quick question...

One of the pictures in post #7 shows the truck up on a ramp. Is that at the Badlands in Attica?
BRORSAM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2011, 10:00 AM   #22 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRORSAM
One of the pictures in post #7 shows the truck up on a ramp. Is that at the Badlands in Attica?
Good eye, yes it is at the Badlands in Attica, IN. I wheel down there all the time since it is only ~3 hours from home.
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2011, 07:12 PM   #23 (permalink)
Limestone Cowboy
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Member # 186604
Location: Thibodaux, Louisiana
Posts: 1,181
Quote:
Originally Posted by RebelK25 View Post
Good eye, yes it is at the Badlands in Attica, IN. I wheel down there all the time since it is only ~3 hours from home.
Yeah, I thought it looked familiar...

BRORSAM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2011, 03:29 PM   #24 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Member # 123514
Location: Middle of hell USA
Posts: 1,196
Send a message via AIM to frikenwoodro Send a message via Yahoo to frikenwoodro
How hard was getting the truck on the logs with no seat? Lol
__________________
I don't build it pretty I build it to function.
frikenwoodro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2011, 06:57 PM   #25 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Member # 90170
Location: Plymouth, IN
Posts: 87
Ha, not as hard as making sure I didn't fall through what little floor I had remaining.
__________________
1981 GMC K25 Tow/Plow Rig
1978 Chevy K20 Truggy "Camper Special" Trail Rig
2003 Ford F350 7.3

[URL="http://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=996799"]My Build Thread[/URL]
RebelK25 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:03 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.