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Once a Postal 67 800 Build

LScout800

LS Powered Tractor
Joined
Jun 10, 2020
Member Number
1937
Messages
362
Loc
CA
This is the build of my 67 800 we got for free. The original drivetrain and all the postal specific parts had been removed, but it had a good frame and a rust free body and that was all I really planned on using anyways. This is my first build and I made lots of mistakes and changes along the way. The goal was a fairly competent rock crawler to run local trails in the desert/mountains. Wanted something that could be street driven. So far had it on a few hammer trails, it's been a blast.

The plan:
Junkyard 5.3 out of a 2003 silverado

NV3500 hacked up and shortened 3 inches

Hacked together NP241c doubler with NWF Shaft

NP241c with Tom Woods SYE

92 F-350 Dana 60 narrowed 5 inches with 4.10 gears, Torx Locker, Ruffstuff cover.

95 14 Bolt with 4.10 gears, Ruffstuff cover/pinion guard, Torx Locker.

Radius Arms and 18 inch coilovers on the front

4-Link and 14 inch coilovers in the rear
(Changed to trailing arms) with a currie antirock.

Jeep ZJ steering box with Barnes TRE flip
(Ditched in favor of sky's Offroad high steer)

37/12.50r17 Falken MTs on bored out H2 Rims

Pic of where it was pulled out of.
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Current Pic
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The truck had been hit in the front passenger corner at some point, and the core support was from two different trucks. I decided to get rid of it as it fell apart as I pulled it out as it had been welded poorly. I plan on tuning the frontend at some point. This will also make it easier to package shocks, and fit the engine in.

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For the engine and tranny I am using a junkyard 5.3 and nv3500. In order to make them fit without taking out the firewall and getting different headers I moved the front crossmember to the front of the frame and it was able to fit nicely.

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The engine mounts were easy once I had the engine where I think it works best I positioned these frameside brackets on the frame, then used a bushing from rough stuff in them to some engine plates from barnes in order to mount the engine.

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Next was to start on the suspension, we lifted the scout up in the air with some horses I built and pulled the old beam axle and leaf springs out from under the truck.
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I then began to cut up my new axle: a balljoint dana 60 from an f-350 that was fresh from the local junkyard for only $275. I started by throwing it under the truck in order to figure out where it worked best. Apparently by placing it where I had to cut 5 inches off the long side allowed me to match the width of the rear c&c 14 bolt and also put the pumpkin where I would have far more uptravel.
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I cleaned off the stock brackets, and trimmed 5 inches off the long side. I sent the long side shaft up to dutchman to get shortened. They did a very nice job sorry no pictures. I also did a cut and turn on the passenger side for better caster/pinion angles.
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I then notched the driver side a little for the radius arm bracket, I cut around 3/8 of an inch to either side to allow for a better weld to the tube and cast.
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I then tacked up some brackets and cut some tube to get the axle located. I used Johnny joints on the frame and barnes forged bushings on the axle and link ends. The brackets are all from barnes except for the radius arm bracket on the axle it is from ballistic.
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I then had to bend the panhard in order to clear the massive dana 60 pumpkin at full stuff.
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Once I had the axle setup where I wanted it I pulled it apart and welded the brackets on then painted it and the links.
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I then threw some old worn out 35s on it in order to get an idea of how it would sit.
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The next order of business was the steering, which utilized a steering box from a zj and a steering kit from barnes. I mounted the box by running some small tubes through the frame then plating the top tube as it sat on top of the frame.
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I shortened the stock scout steering column then ground it square so I could use the collapse able zj steering shaft.

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For the transmission mount I was able to use the stock crossmember, I just removed the old mount and drilled two holes for the gm mount on the nv3500. I notched it to clear the mount and also the front CV yoke.
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The shifter sits where I wanted it although it needs to get bent out in order to clear the steering wheel when shifting into first.
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I also had to cut out the floor some in order to fit the transfer case and CV joint.
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The coilover mounts use hoops from barnes and go through the frame. They are also played on the frame for maximum strength. I welded them on the bottom to prevent fatiguing of the welds.
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I welded in a crossover piece to keep them from bending in and painted them.
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I then dropped the frontend on it's own weight for the first time.
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I flipped it around in my garage for prepreation on the rear 4 link and dropped the old dana 44 in prepreation for the 14 bolt.
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I did the sye on the transfer case. Nice part from tom woods went together easily.
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The johnny joints for the rear end, also very nice.
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And that is how it sits as of right now. I am going to put the transfer case back in and begin to tack brackets and cut tube for the 4 link tommarrow.
 
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I finished up the transfer case then threw it back into the truck.
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After that I was able to see where to place the frameside bracket as I wanted it as far forward as possible without interfering with my transfer case. In order to do that the stock e-break crossmember mount had to go and I cleaned the frame a bit. I then tacked the mounts in from barnes. They are a combo bracket with adjustable uppers and look like they were designed to be there.
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Next was the axle mounts, I put the outer mounts as far over as possible in order to get as much triangulation as possible and still clear the nut on the brakes.
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The upper mounts had to mount over the pumpkin, so I used this link truss from barnes to clear it and give me a place to mount them.
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I also put the mounts themselves on it. I know it looks wierd as they are offset to the side of the truss, but that is actually the center of the axle. I put some Johnny joints in the brackets and measured for tube, but did not get that cut as it was getting late. I will do that today and maybe get to flex the rear end a bit.
 
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I also threw a slightly less worn out 35 on it just to see what it will end up sitting like. I like the stance of it.
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I cut the links and threw them on the truck in order to start having fun and flexing the rear axle.
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The upper links hit the rear crossmember at full compression, but this does not seem like a huge deal to me as the suspension will not flex this much without major body modifications.
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I threw a tire on to get a real world idea of how much flex I would get. This gave me 6 inches of uptravel and 8 of down before the tire wanted to custom clearance the fender.
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A 35 fits quite nicely. It has enough room to clear the fender at full bump. If I ever wanted to run a bigger tire, like a 37 or 38 I could leave the suspension alone I would just have to widen up the fender openings a bit. Which I might do, but put in the extra effort to keep the fender opening looking stock much like they did on the ultimate adventure scout 80 in 4wor.
 
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I started mounting the coilovers. I had used the 14 inch coilovers for mockup on the front as I did not have 18 inchers yet. So in order to take them off I made some nice ones I got at the steel yard for 12 bucks to replace them. They are a bit firmer.
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I started figuring out how they would mount in the rear. The axle side mount actually mounts about 3 inches in front of the axle, and the shocks leans forward a bit. I did this because I wanted to keep the shocks inside the body, while also clearing the tire at full stuff.
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The mount literally goes all the way to the top of the fender wall since the shocks are so tall. It is tight but the shock clears everything ok.
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Here is the shock hoop before final welding. It took nearly an entire day to design this as it required a lot of thinking. I will do the other side tomorrow.

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So much for the next day.
Anyways I finished welded the axle, control arms, and shock hoops together. I still have yet to finish weld the shock hoops and the brackets on the frame though, but that will get done tomorrow.

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Axle fully welded, needs a wire wheel and paint.
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Shock hoops all welded, I painted the top half and back as that will be hard to do once they are in the truck.
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Control arms are also welded up. I am going to weld everything up and paint it all tomorrow, hopefully it will be back to a roller at the end of the day.
 

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Well it is not a roller due to the FedEx man not bringing my gasket and brake parts for the axle, but progress was made. I finished welding and painted everything. Links, calipers, and caliper brackets all painted.
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I use cheap rustoleum spray paint. It looks good and when I mess it up I can easily touch it up. Link bracket welded and painted.
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Cleaning up holes in frame to weld on shock hoops.
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Welded to the frame.
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As far as I got tonight, waiting for my gasket and brake parts for the rear end then I will be able to finally assemble the suspension and roll it around.
 
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It is tight, but the shocks do fit without cutting the bed and without rubbing the tire when it flexes.
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I leaned them forward just a bit in order to keep from rubbing the tire, the hoops is also up against the body, and the shock has just a hair of clearance when one side drops out. A 14 inch shock is the biggest you can fit before cutting the body, or lifting the vehicle even taller and gaining less uptravel.
 
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My parts came in, and the axle got painted and thrown beneath the truck.
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Since the truck was a roller, and the driveway was empty, it got rolled outside to see it out in the sun and not my garage.
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The truck sits high in the front since it is missing weight as in a radiator and such. The frame is sitting at 22 inches on a 35, and it has six inches of uptravel in the rear and 7 in the front. The front 18 inch coilovers also came in so I tried putting them on. The passenger side front shock is not in place yet, as it hits the frame at full droop so I will need to notch the frame a bit. The rear shocks have only one spring as the springs I had are really heavy so I just adjusted the adjuster down to hold the truck at the proper height.
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The tires just stick out barely past the body. Not enough to be a concern in my opinion, as I see trucks and jeeps lifted higher with way less tire coverage than what I have here running around in my area without an issue. If I have trouble a flare can easily cover it up.
 
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I threw the rear back on Jack stands in order to dissemble the rear end to fit on the new brake parts. I tore it apart and rebuilt the parking brake with new shoes and began to put the hubs together.
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New disk brake bracket I welded on the axle that I had cut off of a dana 60u.
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Freshly rebuilt parking brake/caliper bracket on the axle.
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Old fashioned c&c hub on the axle.
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This is where I ran into an issue. The axle I am using is out of a 95 k2500. But the hubs are off of an older c&c truck. Apparently in 92 gm went from mounting the drum on the back of the hub, like the older hubs were, to having a drum that slid over the hub, like the newer axle. Apparently when they changed this, they made the spindle shorter, so the old hub does not work with the new axle. Anyways I could not get the spindle nut on all the way. Which you can see if you look at it in the picture above.
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So anyways I resorted to this setup. It uses the original hub off of the axle, but mounts a random rotor (pretty sure it is off of a 1999 e-250) on the back of the hub. The hub fits on the spindle, the rotor lines up where the other one did, and it increased track width from 64" to 64 7/8". I would have rather had used the older hubs with the slip on rotor and also have the axle narrower, but that did not work out.
 
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So tonight I notched the frame. First I dropped out the suspension and placed the shock up to get an idea of where to cut.​
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I started cutting once I marked it out, and had a large hole in the frame. I filled it in with pieces of 1/4 inch plate.​
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I then stuck the springs on the shock. Plenty of room now for coilovers.​
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Dropped it on it's own weight. It is sitting about 3 1/2 inches too low. The frame is at 19 inches and it only has about 2 1/2 inches of uptravel at this height.​
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Not much of an update since I have been really busy with school and work and stuff, but here is a pic at full droop in the front.
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I also got my seats set up, and my steering wheel exactly where I want it. The seats are out of a land rover and I know they are not the best choice for an offroad rig with no top, they are insanely comfortable and have electric controls I figured out how to hotwire and move the chairs with.
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I forgot I never mentioned the hydro boost setup I am using. It uses a master cylinder from a chevy 2500, and the stock scout mount which I had welded an adapter to.
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It is close to the coilover and barely clears.
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Been pretty busy with school, and most of my garage time has been chasing issues on my f-250, or learning to tig weld, but I did get the brakes on the rear put together finally.
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For the brake lines I welded a bolt to the axle tube then pinched the little wire hook that was on it with a nut to hold it out of the way where I wanted it.
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Eventually I will run a hardline over the axle from both ends, then connect them in the middle of the truss with a line running up one of the upper links to the frame. But I will do that later because I want to plumb the fuel and brake systems at once.
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It also left me enough open space for a bump stop landing pad. Now the rear breaks assembly's are done finally after a lot of trail and error. I just need to hook up the parking brakes.
 
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