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#574423 - 02/28/05 06:59 PM My 63" Chevy Spring Swap
TheBandit Offline
Rock Warrior
Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 912
Loc: Engineer
I did my 63" Chevy spring swap this weekend. Thanks to Pirate4x4's spring swap FAQ everything went smoothly.

Here are some pics:





I made the front hangers out of 3.5" box. I used a plasma cutter. I notched the top to put the spring closer to the frame. The hangers are about 8" long. I used plug welds on the passenger side to avoid dropping the gas tank.

The shackles are 6" long. They started as 1 3/4 x 3/16 strap. I welded 1 inch long 1.5dia x 0.095 tubing at both holes, then split a piece of 1.5in tubing longways and notched it to go in between. For the top, I drilled one of the shackles to 3/4" diameter and welded the original 19mm shoulder bolt from the original Toyota shackles (after pressing them out in a vise). This allowed me to use the stock Toyota bushings and stock Toyota rear hanger that I torched off of another truck. NOTE: A 5" long 3/4 inch bolt also works for this, but it fits very tightly in the bushings and doesn't have a proper shoulder. I tried this first and didn't like how it worked, so I remade the shackles using the original shoulder bolts.

I did some articulation tests (sorry no pics) and realized a few things. My 33" tires hit the body before the shocks or the original Toyota bumpstops bottom out, so appropriate bump stops are in order. Droop is limited by the shocks, which are currently in the stock location.

I was not able to use the stock Toyota u-bolts with the overload leaf in place. They are just barely too short. I think they would work if I took out the overload and the bumpstop. I bought a set of generic u-bolts from a Pep Boys lift kit that were a little too wide, but worked fine after notching the lower spring plates.

The ride is a bit stiff and it looks like they want to ride on the overload a lot. I'm going to cut off the back of the overload like the FAQ suggest and possibly trim the front. If that doesn't do it, I'll take out the overload and throw in the AAL from my Toy springs or maybe some combo of the two.

Despite seeming a bit stiffer, they flex much more than the Toy springs. Once the overload is out we'll see how it rides on the street.

Hope this info helps someone else doing a similar swap.
_________________________
1986 4Runner - 4" IFS - 63" Chevys - 33" ATs - 5.29s - Rear Detroit Sliders - Kayline - Rebuilt 22RE - On Board Air AND Factory AC www.xtremefabricator.com
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#574424 - 02/28/05 08:05 PM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: TheBandit]
BeaterToyota Offline
Mudrunner
Registered: 09/30/03
Posts: 405
Loc: Warrenton, Virginia
Looks good. The truck looks level. I guess it matches the height of the IFS lift pretty well?
_________________________
Jason '88 Toyota, flatbed junker, Inchworm dual cases, spooled rear.
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#574425 - 02/28/05 08:29 PM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: BeaterToyota]
Dok Offline
Body Damage is Cool
Registered: 07/21/00
Posts: 2191
Loc: Austin, TX
Nice job! I like the spring hangers, good work
_________________________
'87 4-Runner--DD/wheeler, 4.3 swap coming soon '89 Supra--E85 powered 2jz NA-T Swap, 533rwhp 497ft-lbs '89 Festiva, turboed BP swap powered by megasquirt
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#574426 - 02/28/05 09:33 PM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: TheBandit]
jcssurf Offline
Mudrunner
Registered: 05/02/02
Posts: 354
Loc: charlottesville/blacksburg
Your swap looks factory from what I see...good job.

But I still don't quite get what is so great about this setup. It seems to be a lot of work for not a lot of lift or a great ride. Longer springs would flex better I suppose, but you have to change the shock posistioning, which would help stock springs flex better too.

Are you pleased with the results? Does it ride better than stock?

And I've always liked your 4runner by the way...nice build-up.
_________________________
90 pickup, 22RE, stiff-ass Ranchos, 2.25 catback, 4:1 header, conical intake, 15x7 ICW alloys, 32x11.50 Dunlop Mud Rovers, 4.56s w/v6 rear -Farm truck until school is done...then plans 2000 Honda CRV EX 5 speed -Driver
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#574427 - 02/28/05 10:24 PM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: jcssurf]
OOP'S Offline
Roll Me Over
Registered: 04/14/00
Posts: 4230
Loc: Roseville, CA, Gateway to the ...
Quote:

But I still don't quite get what is so great about this setup. It seems to be a lot of work for not a lot of lift or a great ride. Longer springs would flex better I suppose, but you have to change the shock posistioning, which would help stock springs flex better too.


For rockcrawling lift is overated, you want flex and that is what the Chevy springs do, flex. Us extreme rockcrawlers take a lesson from the lo-riders, low and slow. High lifts are for posers!!!

Nice clean job, I like the front hangers!!!


Edited by OOP'S (02/28/05 10:26 PM)
_________________________
David Fritzsche 1990 Ex-Cab V-6,5-speed, with a few mods 04.5 CTD Dodge 2500 Ram--Tow Rig Roseville, CA "Serenity through Sobriety"
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#574428 - 02/28/05 10:26 PM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: jcssurf]
Anonymous
Unregistered

I think the Chevy's ride great, at least mine do. I run 5150's with them though. Why did you not flip the u-bolts while you were at it?
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#574429 - 03/01/05 01:11 AM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap
toydoctor2 Offline
Need a Spot
Registered: 08/05/04
Posts: 13
Loc: gresham,oregon
hey,..at least he did what most people havnt,....cut off the stock front hangers...lol...

wait,..my stock ones are still on
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#574430 - 03/01/05 02:04 AM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: toydoctor2]
TheBandit Offline
Rock Warrior
Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 912
Loc: Engineer
Quote:

I guess it matches the height of the IFS lift pretty well?




Pretty dang good. The t-bars are cranked only a little bit, but that's how I had them before with the stock Toy springs and Trailmaster blocks.

Quote:

Nice job! I like the spring hangers, good work




Thanks! Erik B deserves credit for this design. I saw his on the internet and decided to try something similar.

Quote:

Your swap looks factory from what I see...good job.

But I still don't quite get what is so great about this setup. It seems to be a lot of work for not a lot of lift or a great ride. Longer springs would flex better I suppose, but you have to change the shock posistioning, which would help stock springs flex better too.

Are you pleased with the results? Does it ride better than stock?

And I've always liked your 4runner by the way...nice build-up.




Thanks for the complements. I am definitely pleased with the results. The articulation is quite a bit better. To give you an idea, with the old springs I put the truck on jackstands (at the frame) and was able to take the tires off with about 1" under the tires. After I swapped to the Chevys, the rearend itself set only a couple inches off the ground and I had to jack way up to put the tires back on. There is definitely a lot more droop!

I am definitely pleased with the results. It rides very similar to before, but now I have better articulation.

Quote:

High lifts are for posers!!!

Nice clean job, I like the front hangers!!!




Thanks! I have to agree; I'd like my truck to stay at about the height is it now, not much taller. I'll trim fenders and lift drivetrain components to get more clearance and room for articulation.

Quote:

hey,..at least he did what most people havnt,....cut off the stock front hangers...lol...




Oh but wait... I didn't cut off the stock shackle hangers... doh!


My favorite piece is still the shackles. They turned out really cool; the pictures don't do them justice. I tried to get a closer shot, but the lighting sucked.

_________________________
1986 4Runner - 4" IFS - 63" Chevys - 33" ATs - 5.29s - Rear Detroit Sliders - Kayline - Rebuilt 22RE - On Board Air AND Factory AC www.xtremefabricator.com
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#574431 - 03/01/05 02:27 AM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap
TheBandit Offline
Rock Warrior
Registered: 01/26/04
Posts: 912
Loc: Engineer
Quote:

Why did you not flip the u-bolts while you were at it?




I would have liked to do it, but I had limited time. I was working at my cousin's house which is out of town. He was nice enough to let me use his tools (welder, plasma, etc) while he was gone for the weekend. I didn't have time to do a proper job of relocating the shocks; using the factory plates and available u-bolts made things a bit easier.

If I had more experience fabricating, I probably could have done the whole swap in a day. Unfortunately I was working by myself, had never used a plasma, and am still developing my welding skills; I really had to take my time to make sure things were right. It was a long drive home and I didn't want anything to go wrong for safety's sake.
_________________________
1986 4Runner - 4" IFS - 63" Chevys - 33" ATs - 5.29s - Rear Detroit Sliders - Kayline - Rebuilt 22RE - On Board Air AND Factory AC www.xtremefabricator.com
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#574432 - 03/01/05 08:51 AM Re: My 63" Chevy Spring Swap [Re: TheBandit]
seaflea Offline
Getting the Wheeling Fever
Registered: 12/01/03
Posts: 96
Loc: Wilmington,NC
Nice job
I really like the shackle hangers. Nice fab work.
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