01 Suburban K2500 8.1 - Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum
 
Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum  

Go Back   Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum > General Tech > Tow Rigs and Trailers
Notices

Reply
 
Share LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-29-2018, 06:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
01 Suburban K2500 8.1

Fellas -

Have been stationed overseas for 5 years and just returning to the states. Needed a tow rig/daily driver so after a bit of research, I went with a 2001 K2500 4x4 Suburban with the 8.1 engine. This is my 4th Suburban/Yukon, but my first GMT800. My last tow vehicle/daily driver was a 2003 Excursion 4x4 with the 7.3. Loved it, but wanted to go back to gas for this one, and I felt that the 8.1 was a better choice than the V10 in the Ex.

I'll be using the Suburban as a daily driver. Yes, I know the fuel economy will be horrible. I'm ok with that. And I have a few long-distance hauls to do with it -- I have musclecars (and a bunch of parts) in storage in NC and GA; need to bring them to San Antonio.

Figure I'll pick up a new or used open car hauler - 20' or so, dovetail, 5200 lb axles, brakes on both.

Anyway, I started this thread to keep track of any mods that I do to the truck, and for input about what I should/shouldn't do. Curious to hear about mods for the 8.1, including a tune and maybe headers/free flowing exhaust.

Here's a pic of the 'Burb.



Thanks,

Scott
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-29-2018, 08:29 AM   #2 (permalink)
Wheeler
 
WrenchMonkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Member # 129660
Location: East of Cincinnati
Posts: 193
Nice. I love mine.

If you're thinking of doing headers, probably the sooner the better. I guess they have a habit of eating exhaust manifold bolts with time.

A friend did headers in his 8.1 truck...
8.1L chevy exhaust manifold to header swap with dyno tune - C.O.R.E. FORUM
WrenchMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Sponsored Links
Old 07-29-2018, 08:48 AM   #3 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by WrenchMonkey View Post
Nice. I love mine.

If you're thinking of doing headers, probably the sooner the better. I guess they have a habit of eating exhaust manifold bolts with time.

A friend did headers in his 8.1 truck...
8.1L chevy exhaust manifold to header swap with dyno tune - C.O.R.E. FORUM
Thanks for the link! Dyno proven performance is always helpful. Sounds like headers, new injectors, 180* thermostat, disabled torque management, and CAI are in my future.
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 07-29-2018, 08:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
Rolling Mod
 
Beat95YJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Member # 22176
Location: Redondo Beach
Posts: 40,863
How many miles are on it? Iíd be concerned about the 4L80 if you get rid of the torque management. You can add quite a bit of power to the 8.1ís that have the 4L80.
__________________
I can break a steel ball in a rubber room!

Companies helping me get dirty:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

& Blaine


:tank:
Beat95YJ is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-29-2018, 12:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beat95YJ View Post
How many miles are on it? I’d be concerned about the 4L80 if you get rid of the torque management. You can add quite a bit of power to the 8.1’s that have the 4L80.
It has 90,000 miles. 1 owner vehicle. Seems to have been well taken care of.

Are you talking about the 4L80 versus the 4L85? I thought all 8.1 Suburbans had the 4L85, but it looks like my trans code is MT1 and based on that, it's the 4L80.

Here's a post that I found on another site:

"The basic breakdown for the 4L80E goes like this from my books. 91-93 is the first style, 94 is a one off year and got the improved plug in it as well as the PWM solenoid for the TCC was changed to eliminate the cleaning cycle that earlier models had and the 4X4 models no longer had a tone wheel on the output shaft for the PCM as it used the VSS in the transfer case to do all of the work (some 94's still had a tone wheel in certain 4X4 applications). 95-96 is another style, same basic trans as the 94, but it got a boss on the case to mount the NSBU switch(neutral safety back-up switch). 97-early 99 got some improvements in them internally and had the trans cooler lines enlarged and they became known as a rear oiler as the return line was moved further back on the trans case. Mid year 99 the 4L80E received MANY improvements internally which included a new input shaft, wider band, and some oiling changes internally. The 4L80E was used on up into around 05 or so and was badged as the MT1 option whereas the 4L85E MN8 option was used primarily in motorhomes and the 3500HD chassis and other HD applications from about 99 or so. Some models were said to have straight cut planetary gears in some portions, solid input shafts, and the 5 pinion planetaries. I don't know all of this info to be 100%, but it is what I have found from a lot of online researching and my ATSG manuals. You can take most any of the 4L80E's from a newer and swap into an older model as there are adapters for the cooler lines to facilitate this. And the PWM solenoid can be swapped from a 91-93 into a newer model and allow the use of most any of the 94+ 4L80E/4L85E into a 91-93 truck."

If I do have the 4L80, I'm not going to worry too much about it. Might do a shift kit to bump up the line pressure a bit. Also have a trans temp gauge, so I'll keep an eye on the temps and consider a larger trans cooler if temps ever get over 200*.

Thanks

Last edited by bulletpruf; 07-29-2018 at 12:50 PM.
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-30-2018, 12:00 AM   #6 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2009
Member # 135683
Posts: 499
I'd think headers/tune (with torque management disabled) and 180 thermostat would be a good place to stop. Maybe a good air filter in stock box vs CAI.

4L80 shouldnt really be an issue until you either get a ton of miles on it or step up power in bigger way like forced induction or cam/head work.
350TacoZilla is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-30-2018, 09:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
Registered User
 
rennat_2006's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Member # 151321
Location: washington
Posts: 763
Stock torque converters on a 4l80e are garbage. I would suggest upgrading that with the rest of the mods.
__________________
2000 zr2 blazer that is jackstand wheeling awaiting d60 and 14b install
rennat_2006 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-31-2018, 05:43 AM   #8 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2009
Member # 135367
Location: WV
Posts: 3,779
I have dual exhaust, 180 t-stat, k&n air filter with the stock air box opened up and a tune on my 04 8.1 Suburban. It runs good, and is my backup tow vehicle or if we need a 3rd row.
__________________
"I thought I was wrong once, but as it turns out, I was mistaken..."
kc8ksg is online now   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-02-2018, 08:58 AM   #9 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by rennat_2006 View Post
Stock torque converters on a 4l80e are garbage. I would suggest upgrading that with the rest of the mods.
Ok, that's the first time I've heard that. What is the recommended replacement?

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-02-2018, 08:59 AM   #10 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by kc8ksg View Post
I have dual exhaust, 180 t-stat, k&n air filter with the stock air box opened up and a tune on my 04 8.1 Suburban. It runs good, and is my backup tow vehicle or if we need a 3rd row.
Yep, that's about what I want to do.

What gears do you have? Just found out that I have the 3.73's.

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-03-2018, 03:30 PM   #11 (permalink)
Wheeler
 
WrenchMonkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Member # 129660
Location: East of Cincinnati
Posts: 193
I got lucky with 410s, but I still felt a significant difference stepping up to 35s. I'm still running stock exhaust and intake though...
Attached Images
 
WrenchMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-03-2018, 04:42 PM   #12 (permalink)
Registered User
 
rennat_2006's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Member # 151321
Location: washington
Posts: 763
Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletpruf View Post
Ok, that's the first time I've heard that. What is the recommended replacement?

Thanks
That will depend on what your using the rig for. I would suggest a good aftermarket single disc/lock converter with a little higher stall.
__________________
2000 zr2 blazer that is jackstand wheeling awaiting d60 and 14b install
rennat_2006 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-03-2018, 08:34 PM   #13 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by WrenchMonkey View Post
I got lucky with 410s, but I still felt a significant difference stepping up to 35s. I'm still running stock exhaust and intake though...
Nice looking 'burb! I'm going to stick with stock size tires until I swap the gears for 4.10 or 4.56 (or whatever the next step is past 4.10).

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-03-2018, 08:35 PM   #14 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by rennat_2006 View Post
That will depend on what your using the rig for. I would suggest a good aftermarket single disc/lock converter with a little higher stall.
Ok. I'll see what I can find.

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 05:28 AM   #15 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
FYI - my 'Burb has the Autoride option. Anyone have any thoughts on keeping this or deleting it? Sounds like replacing the shocks is exceptionally expensive with Autoride.

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 11:15 AM   #16 (permalink)
Rolling Mod
 
Beat95YJ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Member # 22176
Location: Redondo Beach
Posts: 40,863
Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletpruf View Post
FYI - my 'Burb has the Autoride option. Anyone have any thoughts on keeping this or deleting it? Sounds like replacing the shocks is exceptionally expensive with Autoride.

Thanks
It has been a long long time but Iím pretty sure I have swapped the shocks on an autoride three-quarter ton. I almost think that the shocks do not have wires going into them like the half ton. Verify but you might not be screwed. I think only the half ton have the really expensive Shocks.
__________________
I can break a steel ball in a rubber room!

Companies helping me get dirty:

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

& Blaine


:tank:
Beat95YJ is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 12:27 PM   #17 (permalink)
Wheeler
 
WrenchMonkey's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Member # 129660
Location: East of Cincinnati
Posts: 193
Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletpruf View Post
FYI - my 'Burb has the Autoride option. Anyone have any thoughts on keeping this or deleting it? Sounds like replacing the shocks is exceptionally expensive with Autoride.
I love mine. Rides great empty, levels right out when loaded. I wouldn't even think about deleting it if it isn't giving you any trouble yet.

If/when it does, I had also heard that the factory shocks were expensive. I don't know if that's true, but I know there are very affordable "load bearing" air shock available aftermarket. The ones under my jeep were $66/pr. I'm sure there has to be something similar out there that'll work on the Burb.
WrenchMonkey is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 02:19 PM   #18 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2009
Member # 135367
Location: WV
Posts: 3,779
Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletpruf View Post
Yep, that's about what I want to do.

What gears do you have? Just found out that I have the 3.73's.

Thanks
I have 3.73's too and 285's. It could definitely use some deeper gearing, but does fine how it is. I have the autoride too, so far no problems from it through.
__________________
"I thought I was wrong once, but as it turns out, I was mistaken..."
kc8ksg is online now   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 06:46 PM   #19 (permalink)
Zeus of the Sluice
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Member # 104517
Location: Middle of MT
Posts: 3,041
Quote:
Originally Posted by rennat_2006 View Post
That will depend on what your using the rig for. I would suggest a good aftermarket single disc/lock converter with a little higher stall.
I wouldn't do this. For a tow rig it'll just add heat.

The 8.1 pulls so hard down low it's stupid to bump the stall speed when they're out of steam by 5k rpm.

A 6.0 needs the bump into the torque curve, the 8.1 is already there.


Do a big trans cooler. The stock coolers are never adequate.

Raylar for all your big torque tire roasting dreams... Vortec 8100 8.1L Chevy GM Performance Parts - 496cid BBC Truck / SUV Performance Packages - Raylar Engineering
__________________
R.I.P. Jason Payne
chevy_man is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 07:42 PM   #20 (permalink)
Registered User
 
rennat_2006's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Member # 151321
Location: washington
Posts: 763
Thats correct, i forgot this was a 8.1l. Stall speed is fine with a 8.1, go a little higher on a 6.0l rig for sure
__________________
2000 zr2 blazer that is jackstand wheeling awaiting d60 and 14b install
rennat_2006 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 07:46 PM   #21 (permalink)
Rock God
 
Jason4x4's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Member # 104033
Location: Chandler, AZ
Posts: 2,048
Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletpruf View Post
FYI - my 'Burb has the Autoride option. Anyone have any thoughts on keeping this or deleting it? Sounds like replacing the shocks is exceptionally expensive with Autoride.

Thanks
my 01 2500 has autoride, just electric shocks, no air shocks like the 1500, I just replaced with regular shocks and installed the resisitors to keep the lights out.

and yes, they have wires to each corner
__________________
For the best deal on 8 lug disc brakes click here-->
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Last edited by Jason4x4; 08-05-2018 at 07:48 PM.
Jason4x4 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 11:16 PM   #22 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beat95YJ View Post
It has been a long long time but Iím pretty sure I have swapped the shocks on an autoride three-quarter ton. I almost think that the shocks do not have wires going into them like the half ton. Verify but you might not be screwed. I think only the half ton have the really expensive Shocks.
Definitely know that Autoride is different on 1/2 and 3/4 ton. More research do to before I pull the trigger.

Thanks
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 11:17 PM   #23 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by WrenchMonkey View Post
I love mine. Rides great empty, levels right out when loaded. I wouldn't even think about deleting it if it isn't giving you any trouble yet.

If/when it does, I had also heard that the factory shocks were expensive. I don't know if that's true, but I know there are very affordable "load bearing" air shock available aftermarket. The ones under my jeep were $66/pr. I'm sure there has to be something similar out there that'll work on the Burb.
Thanks, I'll check it out.

Scott
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 11:19 PM   #24 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by kc8ksg View Post
I have 3.73's too and 285's. It could definitely use some deeper gearing, but does fine how it is. I have the autoride too, so far no problems from it through.
Thanks for the input, but I think I'm going to stick with the 265's until I get some deeper gears.
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2018, 11:21 PM   #25 (permalink)
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Member # 539746
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by chevy_man View Post
I wouldn't do this. For a tow rig it'll just add heat.

The 8.1 pulls so hard down low it's stupid to bump the stall speed when they're out of steam by 5k rpm.

A 6.0 needs the bump into the torque curve, the 8.1 is already there.

Do a big trans cooler. The stock coolers are never adequate.

Raylar for all your big torque tire roasting dreams... Vortec 8100 8.1L Chevy GM Performance Parts - 496cid BBC Truck / SUV Performance Packages - Raylar Engineering
Appreciate the input on torque converter. Definitely don't want any slippage if I don't need it.

Big trans cooler sounds like a good call. Any recommendations on brand and model?

I'm familiar with Raylar; prices are pretty darn high for what they're offering, however.
bulletpruf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Pirate4x4.Com : 4x4 and Off-Road Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

** A VERIFICATION EMAIL IS SENT TO THIS ADDRESS TO COMPLETE REGISTRATION!! **

Email Address:
Insurance
Please select your insurance company (Optional)

Log-in


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may 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 05:40 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.