Rick Pewe, the editor for 4-Wheel & Off-Road
has now gotten himself a 1985 GMC K25 with a 250/TH400(that leaks)/NP208/10 bolt/14SF. Yes, this is the Jeep guy who was the first editor of JP
for a while and replaced Cole Quinnell last year. Has the thrashed Ford WWII Jeep with a 455 Buick among other things. In the editorial of the current September issue he states that he wants to build up "this multipurpose tow rig, commuter, junk hauler, and medium-duty four wheeler".
So lets give him some ideas. They've already put an Eaton E-Locker in it (remember the article a few months back?) so the rear is handled for traction adders. Since it has to be a daily driver in Los Angeles, junk hauler, tow rig, etc I think this eliminates super-high-flex-like-an-I-beam lifts, blown and bored out BBC's on nitrous, and huge Super Swamper Boggers. Sorry Willy's.[img]images/icons/wink.gif[/img] I think the idea is a general purpose, everyman's GM SFA truck.[img]images/icons/cool.gif[/img]
So far I'm thinking:
-fix the TH400 and add a tranny cooler (maybe a beefed TH400 or a 4L80E with stand alone computer, but is it worth it?)
-4" BDS front springs (flexes well and retains height, yet also retains load capacity of stock) with ORD shackles
-4" ORD rear shackle flip or do it yourself shackle flip (cut shackles and then gusset) to retain stock rear springs (stock ride and no extra expenses for springs)
-high quality shocks (personal favorites are Bilstein 5100's, but there are many more quality shocks out there, Rancho RS9000's, Deutch-Tech's, etc)
-since it more than likely already has 4.10's, trim the fenders slightly and run 35's or
-trim them a lot (maybe Bushwacker cut outs) with a 1" ORD body lift and run 36x12.5's, 37x13's, etc (taller tires means regearing to 4.56's or higher)
-TSM rear disk brakes (do it yourself, none of that custom ORU crap that costs thousands or other company's stuff that never seems to work right)
-some body armor, like All Pro Offroad's rock bars or something like the armor installed on the F250 Super Duty in the current edition
-Freshen up the 350 with an intake, long tube headers, Vortech heads, low-mid rpm cam, rebuild and tune the Quadrajet (we always need more tech articles on those, educate the masses), wide diameter, custom made exhaust with high flow cat (if it has emissions, gotta be legal) and muffler (no big shiney chrome tip please), ignition system with spark box, coil, rotor, wires (MSD, Crane, Accell, etc, please not Jacob's crap), and what else? Maybe drop on a GM TBI system? or
-383 built from scratch or a crate, maybe fuelie?
-In cage rollbar?
-Maybe beef the 10 bolt? (An E-Locker for it too, chromemoly axle shafts, Warn Premium Hubs, hub fuses, some of those new sooper dooper U joints, etc)
-High-Angle Drivelines monster shafts (or just proper length shafts so they aren't at the limits of the splines)
-Some beefy bumpers (some Trail Ready/ARB/TJM/Ranch Hand box bumpers or PreRunnerish tube bumpers) with integrated Class III rated hitch receivers for portable winch mounts (or just a big [censored] Warn M1200 or M15000 winch up front), D rings, increased clearance and angles, etc
-Rezzy Doors[img]images/icons/cool.gif[/img] for easy viewing of the trail.
-Do It Yourself bedliner for the bed, and maybe the bumpers, any tubing/armor, cab interior, rockers, entire body (why spend good money on a paint job that you're going to dink up on the trail when you can bedliner it for MUCH less and it won't rust or get dings, scratches, etc), whatever....
-ORD crossover steering to make the beast steer better than when it was new
-Custom mounted guages in the dash, ala Shaggy and BAD4WD
-Some of those removeable Firestone air bags for hauling and towing, then pull some pins and they come out for offroading.
Okay, I've covered engine, tranny, axles, brakes, diffs, suspension, tires, armor, bumpers, doors, uhhhhhhh....................what else?
His email address is:
I'm gonna think this through a bit more before I send it all in.