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Solid Front Axle 4x4 Conversion

Discussion in '2wd Pick-Ups C/R 20 2500 C/R 30 3500' started by Flkracker, Jun 11, 2018.

  1. Flkracker

    Flkracker Junior Member

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    I know I’m prolly over thinking this whole thing but figured I’d poke y’all a brains....what would y’all suggest for easiest straight axle swap on an 86’ GMC C2500 Diesel? I personally haven’t done a swap so any info will be greatly appreciated. Not looking to do the transfer case and 4x4 conversion at the moment bc will be swapping trans later on (Auto to Manual). Thanks in advance


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  2. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Depends on what you want and what kind of work you are willing to do.

    And are you planning on leaf springs?
     
  3. Flkracker

    Flkracker Junior Member

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    I am planning on going leaf springs. And doing any bit of work doesn’t bother me. Just need an idea of what im going to need before the tear down.
     
  4. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    There's more than a couple ways to skin that cat. It's been duscussed a few times recently, in the 4x4 section.

    You can do it with lightly modified factory parts, all new aftermarket parts, or fabricate the mounts and brackets yourself.
     
  5. Flkracker

    Flkracker Junior Member

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    What would you suggest easier on the pocket side?


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  6. PrairieDrifter

    PrairieDrifter Full Access Member

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    Fabricating yourself will almost always be the cheaper route. It all depends on what kind of tools you have available to you
     
  7. HotRodPC

    HotRodPC Administrator Staff Member

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    So you're actually talking about a 4x4 Conversion.

    I've never done a 4x4 Conversion though I've had 2 vehicles I gave alot of thought to it about and I let others talk me out of it which I probably should not have since they were Grade A Rust Free Burbs with almost perfect interiors.

    Being I've never done one, maybe not fair for me to disagree, but I know I'd disagree with Fabbing yourself being the cheaper route. Buying the materials, front axle, springs, etc etc, seems to me it would be cheaper to find a wrecked or rust bucket roller donor and go from there. But then again, I don't have what I'd consider expert or intermediate fab skills either. Beginner at best so maybe that's where my opinion comes from. :shrug:
     
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  8. Flkracker

    Flkracker Junior Member

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    Yea my truck has no rust and the only dent is in the tailgate. Since the reman 6.5 Turbo was swapped in it has only had about 180,000 miles put on it. Plan on driving it for quite awhile.


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  9. PrairieDrifter

    PrairieDrifter Full Access Member

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    I was speaking in terms of doing the conversion and keeping the frame and stuff. Honestly all you could really fab up is the spring pocket on the front and you could easily cut and grind out some spring hangers for the rear of the front leafs. It would also be pretty easy to make some spring plates for the u-bolts. Now the other stuff like springs, an axle, and the piece in the frame for the hangers at the rear of the spring, and some steering stuff, stuff like that would have to be purchased. ORD has most of the stuff you would need also, if you're looking to go with brand new stuff.

    It can be hard to find a donor truck for the right price that's not clapped out with a bunch of miles on it and everything is beat to hell anyways. But you will need to find one for a front axle, you just have to make sure its the same gear ratio as your rear axle and the same lug pattern, and if you're lucky the springs wont be sagged out and you could use those too, possibly grab some steering stuff. Its basically whatever you want to do its a toss up either way in my opinion
     
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  10. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Engine crossmember is usually the hangup. Modifications are usually required to get the 4x4 style crossmember into the 2wd frame rails, but it's certainly nothing that's impossible to do.
     
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