so, winter has come and nearly gone (for today anyhow, this is ohio) and im a tad behind where i wanted to be. over the winter i have figured out a few things:
1. the dual tank system in the truck is problematic at best.
2. 47" growlers are an amazing tire, buuuut not on pavement.
3. bending tube is NOT easily self taught, and chassis guys are flakey.
4. i love me some corduroy pants. HOT DAMN!
thats the Cliff notes. let me expand on those a tad.
1- the truck had a dual tank set-up from the factory. a flat pancake style tank directly under the cargo area and a rectangular tank that sat between the driveshaft and rear tire on the drivers side. the suspension made it so the primary tank was in the way a bit. Evo had a fuel cell built to fit in the space, but the company that made it 'modified' my OEM pick-up and pump to work in a deeper tank. that 'modification' has been a nightmare. the fuel lines come off the pick-up under heavy sloshing in the tank. dropping a full 40 gal tank is a PITA too. so, we punt. im having a new cell built that will sit where the pancake tank/spare tire used to sit. this is the right spot for a few reasons. there is plenty of room there, it balances the fuel on the truck weight wise, and it would allow a forklift to be used if the tank did have to dropped when its full. we are going to use the factory sending unit in the truck, but ONLY for the purpose of the fuel gauge working. actual fuel delivery will be handled by a exterior Weldon pump and filter set-up.
2- Tarrrz. the 47" growlers really work well off road. they grip, clean out, and grab extremely well. but they are a tad wide the side walls are a tad balloony on the street aaaaand 47's may not have been the best choice for street trips. that said, i have NO intention of getting rid of them. at all. but a girl can have more than one pair of shoes, yanno? so, im thinking of a military tire for a street beater set. i really like the 45" goodyears. i havent really decided yet.
3- im not even ready to talk about this. ffffffffffffuuuuuu...
4- warm, comfy, soft, and draw in broads like the BOGO at Kohls. do your own research and join the team!
and some pics i havent posted yet:
towing in the snow blows.
truck at Big Dog Fab. its sorta out of its element here, but Ken does great work.
we are making good head way to hit all the shows/events/bogs i had hoped too this year. its finally getting exciting again.
truck has 60k on it. the previous owners ONLY used it as a tow rig. and from the looks on the internals that came out of the trans, they towed heavy and uphill both ways. the trans acted a bit weird ever since i bought the truck. 4.10 gears and 40's nailed that coffin quickly.
the motor is stock-ish. CAI, custom long tube headers, custom exhaust, massages TB, and BB tune. its definitly way stronger than stock, but its not a 'built' motor per say.
As I said before, I'm stripping all the Cadmium plating off and having everything I possibly can Liquid Nitrided. Somebody Facebook messaged me and asked how I got it off without blasting it. So I made a short video:
-clean and degrease all parts. I use brake cleaner to degrease, simple green to clean, and a thorough water rinse.
-container 1 is Kleen-safe Muriatic acid from the local home improvement shack
-container 2 is 2x table spoons of baking soda mixed in warm water
-gloves, mask, good ventilation all required.
It bubbles like mad and turns black as coal. As the coating dissolves it turns lighter grey. When the bubbling stops, the coating is 100% gone. I like to use a medium stiffness toothbrush to get in the threads. Then into container #2 to neutralize the remaining acid. If you still have grey spots (heavily greased spots seem to be more difficult), then rinse with water, scuff the problem spots with some 00 steel wool, and then back in the acid.
Shiny and ready for nitride!
I wish I would have taken before pics. This Frank was gotten second hand from a guy on Pirate (1 link ram that was never finished). It was pretty beat up and it came perfectly clean!
I'm not going sky high like you, but it will receive plenty of go and show mods. I plan on throwing a low level Raylar kit in, LT headers from stainless works, small lift from cognito, lots of goodies inside, etc. Maybe a super if I can ever find a used Whipple. I'd also like to add 4wd and SAS it, but keep it at a max 6" lift. I miss seeing all the old 80s burbs and Blazers with just enough lift to flaunt that solid axle.
Would it be that hard to mount up a 6.0 as a temporary power plant and build your current block?
so, at the request of a certain publication, i was aksed to start a facebook page for just the truck. to build interest and hype i suppose. it also gives them an easy place to see what its all about. so i did. im working on getting all the pics in one place and labeled. stop by, like the page if you would!
Project: H.A.V.O.C (heavy articulated vehicle ordinance carrier...THANKS GI JOE!)
sometimes you gotta do a project so you can do a project. well, thats the case here. i needed a decent sized press to push out the rubber bushings in the housings so i can blast them and have them nitrided. the local engine builder/machine shop wanted $20 a piece to press them out, and $20 a piece to press them back in. $360 for maybe 1 hrs work total? nada. so i went to this huge used equipment reseller in cleveland and picked up this beast.
60 ton hyrdaulic press with an arbor press wheel. 2400lbs of love (much like my prom date). the cast jack handle was snapped, but i ginned one up right quick and got it back in action. pushed all 9 bushing out in about 40 minutes.
so things are going to come together quickly and it should be back on its own feet pretty soon. all the green powdercoat is finally done and back in my hands. i still have a batch of gloss black parts being done (trans dust shield, rear caliper mounts, rear diff cover). i may break down and have the calipers powdercoated also. this step of the build is damn near like a restoration. its its apart, and i have the easy opportunity to make it better...well then, i want to. it slows up the over all re-launch of the truck but it will add years to its looks and rust management.
yeah yeah, just post pics, ya pollock.
axles pc'd MASH green
with its new fancy hat on. soon to be pc'd black.
i was going to PC the pinion support, but it would have to be 50% taped off for fitment. so instead, it went off to be nitride coated. the crust i blasted off of it was worse than the season 9 cast of Rosanne.
there are really 20 fasteners that hold all the links, panhard, and trac bar in place. obviously on this truck they are huge. i decided to swap out to all allen head fasteners for those points. why? well, grading wise they do surpass G-8 rated bolts, and ive just never seen it done on another truck.
7/8" allen. 'uge.
its tough to get the scale of them, but trust me they are huge.
is it necessary to smooth out all the spatter and high spots in the welds? no, but why stop there...
pieces parts with the bolts
the last of the bushing to be pressed back in the housings
and a group shot of the most recent batch of finished parts.
-the allen bolts, washers, pinion support, and caliper support studs are at nitriding
-rear diff cover, trans dust shield, and caliper supports are at the powder coater
-sliders / steps... gotta get serious about those before the frame gets final paint. i have a design in mind, but every one is fighting me on it. its good, simple, effective, and attractive.