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00 Xtreme
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3,684 Posts
lol I love taking things apart, but I find myself starting too many projects and not finishing them. But since I've been on school I have budgeted myself x amount of dollars and find myself finishing all these projects since I have all the materials and lost motivation previously haha

Sorry to whore
 

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Frame Laying Member
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2,068 Posts
the truck looks tiny in your garage
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #586
Well I have some not-so-good news for the Sonoma... :(

A guy that works with me who was a mechanic for 5 years or so came over to help me work on the truck and hang out, etc. (this all spurred because I had been borrowing his balljoint press for about a month to put in my PP lower BJs and still hadn't gotten around to doing it lol). Well I needed to pull the axle shafts out of the rear end because I had replaced the originals after curbing the truck in the 2nd to last accident. Well the axle shafts that are in it came from my longbed rolling chassis that I have and the time has come for me to move that from my storage unit to my house, but I needed to put the axle shafts back in that to be able to get it up on a trailer, so out they came.

Well thankfully my mechanic buddy took the rear apart and not me because he noticed metal dust in the rear, as well as some abnormal wear on the spider gear pin. Upon further inspection it seems that the accident actually bent more in the rear end than just the axle shafts, and I should've replaced the entire rear end instead of just the shafts. The Ring gear got shoved over so far into the Pinion gear that the mesh was bottomed out and the ring gear got super-heated to the point that it's now blue lol

So what I'm probably going to do is get a Blazer 8.5" disc rear from the junkyard and swap that in, because it's stronger and it's also go discs, so putting my drilled/slotted F-body rotors on will be that much easier. I can get one locally for around $300

Kinda sucks though... because that's $300 more to add into the budget
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #589
Yeah, since the Sonoma has every factory option for a 2wd pickup it had the Auto trans, and unfortunately, you get the bigger 8.5" rear with the manual trans, which is not the option but the standard :(
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #590
Well, the axle shafts got used on my lonbed frame with the '95 cab on it to be able to roll it up onto my buddy's trailer and haul from my storage unit to my house where it now resides behind my shed. I'm such a hillbilly :)
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #591
Was able to work on the truck for a few hours Tues night. I pulled the axle shafts and new u-bolts back off the longbed frame that is now behind my shed and then cut the u-bolts on the sonoma and removed the 4" drop blocks, mono'd out the leafs, and re-assembled the rear with the monoleafs and no drop blocks.

I was under the impression that in their mono'd form the leafs would be too weak to support the weight of the truck, hence the need for the airbags in a monoleaf setup, but my leafs compress to the point of being flat and won't compress any farther. I'm not sure if it has something to do with the way the spring steel is made that it can't 'invert' or what, but as of now it seems like even with the leafs mono'd and no bags in the rear I still wouldn't be able to lay out, so I may end up putting the 4" blocks back in, but that would mean I'd need ANOTHER set of Ubolts which is about $30


In other news....

My daily driver 98 Dodge Avenger 4cyl decided to spin a rod bearing/throw a rod on the way home from work yesterday, and now has a rod knock from hell that sounds like a midget is inside my engine banging on things with a hammer lol. I barely made it home from work because I had to keep my foot on the gas to keep the motor from dying and I also had to pop it into neutral in traffic or at stop lights/signs to keep the load off. However, it still died on me a few times and took forever to restart but luckily I eventually got it home. Since the car is such a POS it is worth less as a whole than what it would cost to put a new motor in it, plus the trans is really crappy (143,500 miles on it, and it burns/leaks about a quart of oil every 2 weeks lol)

My wife and I aren't in a position right now to buy a new car, and since I'm still making payments on the Sonoma it only makes sense to pull a marathon work session and work around the clock for the next few days (other than going to work today and tomorrow) to get the truck driveable for Monday to get me to work. So basically the plan is to do the necessary work to get the truck driveable. This probably means that for now the rear will remain monoleafed the way it is without notches or the 4" drop blocks, and I won't have time/money to build a new y-pipe so the stock one will be getting thrown back on until I can take a weekend to build the new one. The front will be fully bagged, the Sanden SD7 will be getting put on the motor, and the entire air management system will be installed. The front end will also be put back together as much as it can be to be driveable (may have to zip tie/duct tape the headlights to the core support for now until I can get the proper bracketry that I need, and when bnop9001 sends me the HID parts I paid him for about 3 weeks ago...)


If anybody who lives near me wants to help there'll be plenty of beer in my fridge and I'll buy pizza but I gotta be able to drive this thing come Monday! :eek:
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #594
Good Lord, Fix That Bumper, Who Cares About The Wheels
Please don't tell me that you read just the first page of this thread that is over 4 years old and then decided to comment on the first few pictures of my '95 from when I had just gotten it and was lowering it and putting my 18s on.

IF that is the case though... you sir, are retarded :phil:
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #595 (Edited)
Well a little bit of an update since the last one...

After calling numerous junkyards in the area with them all telling me "oh yeah, we have at least 3 Blazer 8.5" rear ends" (because people mis-identify them all the time) I first went to one place where the 2 rear ends they had were both 7-5/8", and then the 2nd place I went said they had 3 so I went there on my lunch break today and 2 of them were 7-5/8", but one of them WAS A 2WD BLAZER DISC BRAKE 8.5" REAR! So I bought it for $300 plus tax ($328 total) and will be picking it up after work with the help of a buddy I work with who's using his Dads truck to help me. The axle came from a 2001 Blazer with 71k miles on it and, according to the yard, was a 4.3/Auto. But I'm kinda doubting that since as far as I've EVER heard, they only came with 4.3/5 speeds. Needless to say though... it will now be mine, and the Sonoma will now have every factory option for a truck plus the addition of Blazer rear disc brakes :)

And soon enough I will be putting the F-body drilled/slotted rotors and the Blazer dual piston calipers up front so other than the blazer divorced hub/rotor spindles the truck will be fully optioned as far as drivetrain is concerned (but these things will be projects for upcoming weekends since right now the plan is strictly to be driveable by Monday). And also eventually (but much further down the road) the truck will be getting a '93-'97 F-body T-56 behind the 4.3 :evilg:


But yeah... back to the rear. Plans for tonight are to pick it up, then I'll be picking up a set of Ubolts for the 4" blocks (because I really want to be able to lay out :)), then we will probably hit up AutoZone or something of the sort to get axle seals, cover gasket, pinion seal and plenty of diff fluid. I may try to stop at the local parts store/speed shop and pick up a chrome cover if they have it because the stock cover is pretty rusty and bent up. Then I'm going to spend some time wire-wheeling it, cleaning up the insides, and maybe even coat it with some POR/Chassis Saver. Then it'll get put back together and installed. After that's done and if time allows, I want to get the stock gas tank x member out and get the SD raised one in, as well as drill the forward tank mount holes higher, then re-install the gas tank, but only after draining it of it's 87 octane fuel and putting in a few gallons of 93 to go with the Wait4Me tune I got put on the ECM :D

Then tomorrow it's right back at it again to keep on truckin and get this baby driving! I'll try to take lots of pics and take the time to post them throughout the weekend so you guys can keep up on this.


I'm pumped this thing is finally gonna see the road again, and better than ever! :D
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #597
Updating from my phone. Picked up the blazer 8.5" disc rear as well as ubolts to work with the 4" blocks. Took the diff cover off to inspect everything and it all looks good, although the rear doesn't have the factory G80 gov-lock so until I can afford a nice locker I will have to run with an open rear. Heading out now on a parts run for lots of misc bs. On my way out I noticed a package sitting on my doorstep and it is my Envoy HID parts, arriving just in time :) I'll update again once I'm back home with parts
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
Joined
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #599
i have some envoy stuff brent......
I remembered that you did Scott, but I didn't think you had the factory HID parts. I can't remember either... do your lenses have the brackets and adjusters and all that on them? I need little misc bracket/adjuster pieces for mine, and one of the factory HID bulbs that I got from bnop9001 broke in shipment and you have to buy the bulb/ignitor/ballast together as a whole and from the dealership it's $1300 per side :eek:

So his oversight in shipment prep leaves me with a broken $1300 part :(


For what it's worth... I still had the stock fog-light style Sonoma headlight from the right side because the left side one got destroyed in the first accident where the old man hit me, so I ordered up a left side headlight off eBay for ~$40 and should have it here sometime this week. I'm not sure if I'll pursue the Envoy headlights or not because the plans I have for my custom front end may not work with those lights
 

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Lifted 2wd & Bodied 4x4
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13,484 Posts
Discussion Starter #600 (Edited)
And in other news...

An update for the status of the truck. Well, I didn't make it to have the truck driveable for today but it's ok because I've been borrowing my parents Yukon Denali since Wed night due to the fact that they've been in Cancun since last weekend. They were due back last night but took a bump to extend their vacation and get free travel/hotel/food, etc, so I will be able to use their truck for another day or two at a minimum, and I may also be able to continue using it once they're home since only my Mom is working right now.

The parts running that I did Saturday ended up taking me 5-6 hours and I didn't actually get started working on the truck until around 4:30pm Sat night. The parts that I picked up were:

New axle seals & pinon seal
Right Stuff gasket goo
10 new studs (which I left laying on the counter and have to go back to get today lol)
Some POR-15 and Metal Ready
A chrome dipstick for an 80-83 small block (350) because I had taken mine off anticipating putting the Sanden on the side of the motor (I hope this fits!)
I tried to get a chrome diff cover but Trans Dapt labels their 7.5"/7.625" ten bolt rear cover as being able to fit an 8.5" and it clearly won't, so I got a refund on that
The fittings to adapt my trans cooler lines to the Corvette radiator
1 each of 2 different styles of radiator mount bushings (the factory Sonoma ones are what will work best and I am ordering 3 more today and will have them tomorrow)
An Optima Red Top battery
A pass exhaust manifold gasket (because I had taken it off to get the dipstick off)
Fluids (2 gal 50/50 mix coolant [I have a 3rd at home], 5 quarts of trans fluid, 2 quarts 80/90 weight gear oil, and 3 cans of brake cleaner)

My 14 y/o cousin who lives right down the road came over to help and ended up spending the night and helping me all day yesterday too. We completely dis-assembled the new rear, threw out the rusted out backing plates, and wire-wheeled/prepped everything for paint using POR Metal Ready, then last night between 1 and 3am I POR-15'd all the axle parts as well as my modded stock lower control arms. We did run into a few issues with the new rear in that the bleeder screw on 1 of the calipers was siezed and snapped off (but I am going to try to get it out with an Easy Out on my lunchbreak here at work), unfortunately the eBrake cables were already cut because the axle was on a parts rack, and the truck cables won't work on the blazer eBrake, so I'm going to have to find blazer eBrake cables at some point and for now I disconnected the cable under the cab and removed the truck cables. Also, since the 8.5" rears come behind 5speeds they have a bulky fly-weight on the yoke of the rear to help smooth shift transitions, but the weight is crooked on the yoke (and I don't want it anyway) so I am going to take it to a driveshaft shop today and have it pressed off.

In addition to cleaning/painting all those parts (and other things like un-sticking the caliper slides) I was able to remove the stock gas tank crossmember and install the SD raised one that I have, plus re-drill the front mount holes to raise the front of the tank as well. While the tank was out I drained it of the remaining 87 octane fuel and will put a few gallons on 93 in it before I drive it. I still need to grind off the crappy wishbone mount that is on the SD crossmember from the guy I got it from (I cut the big/easy stuff off with a sawzall already). I'll also need to trim the ZQ8 frame brace to be able to fit over the raised gas tank because I plan to use that and the gas tank crossmember for mounting the air tank. While I had the tank out I completely removed the EVAP line that goes up to the motor as well.

Next up is to build the notches (I already measured for them), drill/cut out the factory holes in the frame to mount the airbag under the framerail (between the rail and the leaf), connect the spare tire crossmember to the bottom of the frame rail with a small piece of metal and some welding to reinforce the area where the bag will be mounted (there's about a 1/4-3/8" gap from the factory), install the new axle, mount the tank/water trap/pressure switch/valves and wire it all up, and once that is all done the the rear should be finished.

Then it's on to the front lol
 
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