Dana 70 HD brakes - Off-Road Forums & Discussion Groups
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-01-2005, 02:30 PM
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Dana 70 HD brakes

I posted this in the general forum and got pointed here, we have a 1977 GMC C3500 camper special Sierra classic. The tag on the side of the body says the GVWR is 10,000 pounds and the axletubes are 4" in diameter, so i'm pretty sure it's a D70HD. It has a 454, TH400, and 4.10's, with who knows how many miles. I checked the VIN, i believe it was built in the salt lake city region. We are the third owners, and to the best of our knowledge, it has always been a racecar hauler. The odometer has rolled once while we've owned it, and being it's been a hauler, we predict it has about 350-450,000 miles on it. To the best of our knowledge, the engine is stock and the transmission is stock other than a heavy duty oil cooler for each. As far as i know, my dad bought the truck several years before i was born (i'll be 16 in october) and he says he has NEVER touched the rear brakes. In 1995 we moved out here to texas from california and quit drag racing. We got a boat, but it has a VERY short tongue (can barely pull the tailgate down without it hitting the manual boat winch) and we have to back the truck to the point that the exhaust tips are nearly under water and the water is over the rear hubcaps. My guess is we've done that about 30 or 40 times (maybe even 50) so I would bet quite a bit on that those rear drum brakes are completely rusted and wasted. In my other post i was given a link to a disc brake kit, but the price was in the 700 zone. That's real high for us, but then again, i dont know what it would cost to put some new rear brakes on it. As of when i drove it yesterday on the highway, i probably had to start applying brake about 1/8 mile out so that it would stop without jolting around from heavy braking (a front end alignment would help but nobody has a lift with more than a 6500 pound capacity). Does anybody know how much it would cost to replace the entire assembly vs a disc brake conmversion? I'll upload all my pictures of the truck to a album and post a link to see what i get to drive to school.

Also, does anybody have any idea how fun it is to drive a truck that gets 10 MPG?
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-01-2005, 02:57 PM
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Re: Dana 70 HD brakes


There's a link to all the pictures I have of our truck, I'll go out and get more in a bit.
post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-01-2005, 08:25 PM
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Re: Dana 70 HD brakes

You sure it's 10MPG? Our '86 C2500 Camper Special with 454 crate/th400/4.10s gets 8-9MPG, depending on load. But yeah, it was my first truck and I was the one that had to keep the tanks full.

Don't worry to much about water in the brakes, unless it's salt water. First time you stop the friction will just evaporate all moisture as it heats up.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-02-2005, 12:02 AM
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Re: Dana 70 HD brakes

yea, it's 10. It's at the engine's torque peak at 60 MPH so thats normally where we keep it, get that extra bit from that (engines get some of their better fuel numbers at the TQ peak) so it bumps it up a tick. it got about 7-8 MPG pulling that 10,000+ pound enclosed racecar trailer we had back in california. Can you say weight tax? It was $300 every time we registered it, bringing the whole bill to $350 to register the damn thing. As upposed to texas, we paid 15 bucks last month to register it. It isnt salt water, but considering that the brake shoes havent been replaced in 20+ years in the back axle, i'm not sure there really is friction to begin with. I know the E-brake dont work worth crap, we accidentally drove down the highway 2 miles at 45 MPH with it on onvce before realizing it was on.
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