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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #401 ·
Glad to hear some updates on this! Sounds like we both are trying to work on our projects!

Can you elaborate how exactly are 2wd spindles better then the stock 4wd ones? They taller or shorter the the 4wd ones?
Well the major differences between the 2wd and the 4wd is the fact that the lower balljoint is flipped between the two, as are the tie rods. At this point I'm not sure if the tie rod will be an advantage (but I'm thinking it will be when using tubular lower arms), but for sure the balljoint is an advantage. It will actually make the spindle more of a 'tall' spindle which makes it so the lower arm doesn't have to come up into the frame as far (and subsequently lessens the difference between the bag plate area of the arm and the straight front leg of the arm). Also, this allows the ability to run a drop spindle which offers a few slight advantages as well. The drop spindle has the wheel pivot center closer to the upper balljoint mount, so it brings the upper arm down in relation to the wheel, easing up on the camber and giving more range on the lift side of the spectrum
 

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DELIBERATE DESIGNS
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Well the major differences between the 2wd and the 4wd is the fact that the lower balljoint is flipped between the two, as are the tie rods. At this point I'm not sure if the tie rod will be an advantage (but I'm thinking it will be when using tubular lower arms), but for sure the balljoint is an advantage. It will actually make the spindle more of a 'tall' spindle which makes it so the lower arm doesn't have to come up into the frame as far (and subsequently lessens the difference between the bag plate area of the arm and the straight front leg of the arm). Also, this allows the ability to run a drop spindle which offers a few slight advantages as well. The drop spindle has the wheel pivot center closer to the upper balljoint mount, so it brings the upper arm down in relation to the wheel, easing up on the camber and giving more range on the lift side of the spectrum
Nice! Sounds like you can get a lot more drop travel. Plus if the tie rods need correct, it shoudn't be too big of a hassle.
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #405 ·
Well, got all the machining work done on one of the disc-turned-hubs, just need to press in the new, longer studs and install the new bearings and seal and it will be able to be used with my truck-style drop spindles to set up the front suspension on this beast. Getting these parts on the truck (with a flipped lower balljoint) will allow me to finalize where the lower arm will sit and finally weld it up. Then I can match the spare drivers side arm I have to it and once that's done the front suspension will essentially be ready to go.

Then all that's left is to finish the frame transitions, finish the gas tank crossmember, install the bodymounts, drop the frame horns, then flip it over and weld everything on the bottom and the frame is done for now

At that point I can then get the frame tucked under the table and get the cabs up on top which frees up room in the garage for the Sonoma. And once that's in it will be time to get it ready for winter, which means the prototype pair of my Wheels Centered upper arms, finally installing shocks, 3.5" Fabtech lift spindles with the custom machined hubs and modified for the big brake swap that consists of LS1 Camaro 12" D/S rotors paired with Blazer dual-piston calipers, and my 18's with the 32" tires to cap it all off. Out back I'll be static lifting it to match with stock 2wd leafs, lift shackles, and an axle flip, also capped off by the 18s/32s. While the leafs/rear end is out I also need to install a new pinion seal and re-seal the diff cover but I won't be able to do the latter until after I pull the axle shafts which I need to do to be able to remove the stock Blazer caliper mount brackets and install new ones that I'll be building to pair the stock Blazer calipers to the rear LS1 discs. Once all that stuff is done it's just put the interior back together and fix a few other small things and the Sonoma will finally be DONE and ready for winter :)

Then the focus comes back to this truck 100%
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #409 ·
Any updates on the plate to flip the lower ball joint?
Yeah, I have it drawn up but I need to finish the drawings for the other stuff I need to get cut at the same time. Hopefully within the next week or so, cause I want to have the stuff cut and in my possession before the week of thanksgiving
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #411 ·
thats my buddies truck. Its got billets on it now and its forsale for 5500$$$
Yup. I've followed the ownership/progression of that truck way back since jimluc built it. Definitely a top notch ride :tup:
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #412 ·
ok, first and foremost I HAVE PICS lol. Just didn't grab the camera on my way out the door this morning.

I was able to work on this thing for a bit on Saturday. I pulled the passenger side spindle off and then pulled the entire front axle as a full assembly by myself (CV axles still attached and all... it was a pain). Then I mounted the disc-turned-hub on the 2wd drop spindle and started mocking it up. I found out a few things in the process: The 4wd upper ball joint will not seat far enough into the 2wd drop spindle to get the castle nut on and clear the cotter pin hole, so 2wd upper balljoints are in store (but the bolt right in and I have a pair of the SuperTravel's that I can use, so no biggie). Secondly I found that the 4wd clip must have stock balljoints still because they're shot and they're still riveted in. So I need to grind the rivets out to get them out and I'm pretty sure that I'll have the same taper issues with the lower joint into the 2wd arm, so I'm going to just order a pair of 2wd lower balljoints and make a set of adapter plates to bolt them in. That will be enough to complete the spindle swap so then I can get it layin on the 18 again and finalize the lower arm, then move on to the other side. Once the arms are all welded up I will switch everything back to 4wd stuff for now and the truck style 2wd drop spindles are getting sold to JimHrabe. I will be using those funds to put towards some 2wd Blazer drop spindles that will be what goes on the truck (and eventually will get machined and joined to 4wd hubs to maintain the front axles/diff. But the truck will be 2wd for a while til I do that work and figure out what I'd do for CVs).

I'm still hoping to have the frame for this done for the current phase of the truck before Thanksgiving, so that I can then focus on the Sonoma and then get crackin on the cab :)


Pics tomorrow with hopefully more progress to go along with them
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #413 ·
PICS!!! :D


Disc turned into hub (still have to press the longer studs in) and mounted on 2" drop spindle






4wd spindle removed




4wd spindle




Bearing shaft of 2wd drop spindle stuck through bearing of 4wd spindle to show the difference between them. You can see that the 2wd spindle is about a 1" drop at the upper balljoint, and flipping the lower balljoint will make it about a 1/2" drop at the lower balljoint (gives the same effect as a tall spindle or tall balljoint conversion)




Side by side comparison




Got the other hub finished last night, hopefully gonna get more done tonight and take more pics!
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter · #414 ·
2 more pics for you guys. No progress last night as I didn't get home til almost 10:30


Big brakes that are going on the Sonoma (modded truck style 2wd stock spindle, disc-turned-hub, LS1 Fbody D/S 12" rotors, '98up D/P calipers)




Still need to do a little more machine work on the spindle and build the bracket but then they're ready to go on the truck :)

 

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Theres several places selling / making this kit. If i remember correctly Ed's selling actual custom machinedh ubs for 150 each? And the adaptor bracket set is 75 ish? I did the same thing Brent did with a set of old rotors.... sooo much cheaper if ya have the tools avalible.
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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Discussion Starter · #417 ·
rotor-hub is genius, how much for a pair?
It took me probably 12-15 hours on a co-worker's crappy bench-top lathe to machine those down after cutting the disc surface off with a grinder. Not something I would do for money unless I owned my own decent quality lathe.

Like Dave said... look into Ed Miller's brake setups. They're the same thing as what I did but he sells it all as a kit. Dave's prices may be accurate but I haven't looked at them in a while to know for sure.

I think his username is ebmiller88
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter · #419 ·
Got a little bit of work done over the weekend. Messed with the brakes for the Sonoma a bit and then moved onto this thing. First thing I did was get you guys a pic of the front axle




Then I got the lower balljoints out of the arms, the drivers side was bolted (I have an extra set of drivers side arms that will get matched to the passenger side arms before I even tear into the drivers side suspension, and then I'll just swap them out) and the passenger side was riveted. So I ground off the rivets and got that out then I cut the dome off the lower arm




Once that was done I installed the 4wd lower balljoint upsidedown into the arm (after meticulously comparing it to a 2wd balljoint and getting the last few specs I needed for the 2wd balljoint adapter plate). After the balljoint was in I threw the 2wd drop spindle on






The upper balljoint will be coming out of the upper arm (also riveted in and will need to be ground out) and I'll be using a Power Performance SuperTravel 2wd joint in the arm to get everything setup. Then the arms will get finalized and the frame will get finished and it will then get tucked under the frame table so the cabs can go up on top
 
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