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Old June 12th, 2012, 04:13 PM   #1
Rx7Kevin
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Default Project: Frankenburban (a 3/4 ton story)

OPERATION PROJECT BURBAN!

Lame name for a fun truck I know but it describes it pretty well.

I acquired this mess of a truck recently and I have begun getting it road worthy as a tow vehicle and random off-road adventure bus.

This truck had spent 90% of its life in Texas until my girlfriend’s family bought it. This is a 1985 ¾ ton suburban that originally came with the 6.2 diesel but it pooped out on it and her folks had another suburban either 87 or 89 350 gasser EFI that had a manual transmission/t-case but the body and suspension was bad.

So the 2 trucks became one, motor/trans set went into the ¾ ton with a good body.

Here are some of the before shots:













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Old June 12th, 2012, 04:27 PM   #2
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the chassis is clean as all hell, I debadged it and filled the holes and began preppin for paint, and then painted it!

I used muriatic acid on the hood and roof to get the rust off, brushed it on then let it sit for 20 minutes then power wash and brush it off.

that bare metal is after 10 seconds of sanding, at the most...

works great but it is caustic as allllll hell, try not to breathe it, I used rubber gloves and a mask, You should do the same.

here is some general prep shots:














and here is it in paint!

now I just have to finish cleaning up the interior, I have swapped in another steering column, no more scary tilt issue while driving.


GF helping out :)

and viola!


Yes it is bedliner and no it will never rust again.
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Old June 12th, 2012, 05:00 PM   #3
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nice old 'burb, but why does everyone think bed liner stops rust?
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Old June 12th, 2012, 10:19 PM   #4
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nice old 'burb, but why does everyone think bed liner stops rust?
Prevent*

That passenger rear bottom wheel well by the exhaust tip in the photos above has rust some that will come through as does rear driver door (on the inside)

That dent back there is from someone backing a horse trailer in it.
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Old June 26th, 2012, 08:23 AM   #5
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updates!!!

well, "updates"

This thing was brought up to texas between 04-06 and began sitting around 07. did a few little things and have drove it for 20 minutes until last weekend I took it to frankfort/traverse area for a 500 mile weekend camping trip. No problems, everything worked and didn't break down!

I had to replace the headlamp adjuster screws but those plastic ones still suck so they are aimed better but I would like it higher.

Had to re-wire license plate light

added drop hitch and ball

still needs a windshield

lubed locks/doors/windows

more bedliner for wheel wells and underside.

aaaaand I had this laying around so I mounted it up, fits perfectly on where the pin that held the auto trans shifter for this column was originally in.




Its got 4.10 gears, I was getting 13mpg over 500 miles or so w/ a high idle driving roughly 60mph when cruising.


I am likely going to have to re-wire the wiper and headlamp circuits, the connectors are all corroded don't get a good enough contact, looks like they may not be getting the correct volts or amperage through the circuit. That may be some of my headlamp issue but i still think they are aimed low and those plastic threads are stupid.

Last edited by Rx7Kevin; June 26th, 2012 at 08:30 AM.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 11:00 AM   #6
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Well shit just got real, some metal in the oil. 30 psi on cyl 2 and 13 on cyl 4. oil smokes a bit from passenger side exhaust.





So I picked up an incomplete serp belt swap with an complete longblock tbi w/ engine stand for 100 dollars. Real compression #s are still unknown at this time, but I was able to get about 60psi out of it by turning it over by hand, made much friendlier compression noises than the other one.





It looks to have come from a work truck or van, maybe add an oil cooler... otherwise I can plug the one end and the other would be great for a gauge.


I'm just getting ready to get the engine out but I'm not sure if I want to just pull the engine or pull the whole t-case/trans/engine combo, because aligning input shaft splines on the trans to the engine as well as getting at a few of the bolts looks like a nightmare...


How have you guys done it, I'm curious if my hoist can pull off the job.



I think regardless though I am going to need a few friends and some beer to come over and help.
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Old November 23rd, 2012, 04:35 PM   #7
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I would pull it all at the same time replace the clutch get the flywheel resurfaced paint the Trans make sure your input bearing is good and replace the seal while you are in there
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Old November 26th, 2012, 02:01 PM   #8
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too late, pulled that bitch out last night. didn't get much else done, I'll be doing comp numbers on the other engine tonite as well as measure the clutch and check the bearings. Throwout bearing seemed pretty good, I've ran into worse before but since its out I'll likely replace it. Clutch master and slave will be replaced, the master has a leak going into the cab.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 04:34 PM   #9
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Definitely replace the slave if your going to replace the master cylinder. The worst part about just taking the motor is trying to line the input shaft up its not horrible but i it can be time consuming i have had to do it before. I would definitely check that motor over before you put it in so you don't end up with the same problem. While it is apart make sure to replace anything that needs it or is even questionable because it never fails one you get it back together something you were debating replacing will go out.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 04:42 PM   #10
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Three fifty all the same. No updates on shifter handle mod or window crank?
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Old November 26th, 2012, 05:23 PM   #11
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Quote:
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Three fifty all the same. No updates on shifter handle mod or window crank?
treeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee fiddy

oh and you mean this?!?!?!?!


Also, going to serp belt setup and e-fan.

Rockauto wants 45 dollars for master and slave cylinder, sachs brand too! yet the hose between they want 45 dollars lol.

Last edited by Rx7Kevin; November 26th, 2012 at 05:28 PM.
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Old November 26th, 2012, 06:49 PM   #12
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I would just scrap it all about now, that damn bed liner just ruined a perfectly good Burban, LOL
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Old November 26th, 2012, 07:24 PM   #13
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The owner's preference bub. This truck is used mostly for hauling parts, junk, and driving thru the Woods for camping. The exterior is the last thing he cares about. It its durable and one color now.
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Old November 27th, 2012, 10:31 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigWheelBob View Post
I would just scrap it all about now, that damn bed liner just ruined a perfectly good Burban, LOL
haters gonna hate.

Did a comp test on this and got no blast of water in the face and no terrible gritty sounds, all comp numbers read about 150-155 except cyl 3 and 4 were about 135-140. good enough for me!

Anyone have a min thickness spec on a clutch disc?
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Old November 27th, 2012, 12:30 PM   #15
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Keep postin. interesting build.
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Old December 4th, 2012, 11:02 AM   #16
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Updates! 12/04/2012
So the plan is going to serp belt swap with E-fan. Almost got all the serp belt parts to swap but got other things in first. Gaskets and clutch hydraulics


size comparison between rx7 clutch and suburban lol



I will be re-using the old clutch because it is less than 10% worn, luckily whoever did the swap last at least put a new clutch in it but I believe the throwout bearing is so-so

Flywheel all nicely re-finished!


Here is the progress block on the block had to swap valve covers and replace those gaskets



Inside the block!




It was 100 dollars well spent! 4 bolt mains with a little windige tray and the cross hatch on the cylinder walls looks good as does underneath the valve covers.

Next up! Install high flow oil pump, rear main seal, oil pan gasket, install clutch components (hydraulic and mechanical/bearings) and hopefully drop this sucker in before Christmas.

Once the engine is in I can get the accessories in order, figure out what electric fan I want and etc, I would like to get the engine in before it gets cold considering I don’t think I’ve felt it be winter yet…

after that comes headers, electric oil pressure gauge, electrical water temp gauge.
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Old December 4th, 2012, 11:14 AM   #17
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Shoot, put a rotary in it.
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Old December 4th, 2012, 11:30 AM   #18
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Shoot, put a rotary in it.
need moar torques
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Old December 5th, 2012, 05:39 AM   #19
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It was 100 dollars well spent! 4 bolt mains with a little windige tray and the cross hatch on the cylinder walls looks good as does underneath the valve covers.

Next up! Install high flow oil pump, rear main seal, oil pan gasket, install clutch components (hydraulic and mechanical/bearings) and hopefully drop this sucker in before Christmas.

Once the engine is in I can get the accessories in order, figure out what electric fan I want and etc, I would like to get the engine in before it gets cold considering I don’t think I’ve felt it be winter yet…

after that comes headers, electric oil pressure gauge, electrical water temp gauge.[/QUOTE]

I assume you mean high volume? A high volume oil pump with stock pan can cause oil starvation issues, I have been told on several occasions. I'd suggest stick with a quality brand stock replacement
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Old December 5th, 2012, 07:13 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RADRICK View Post
It was 100 dollars well spent! 4 bolt mains with a little windige tray and the cross hatch on the cylinder walls looks good as does underneath the valve covers.

Next up! Install high flow oil pump, rear main seal, oil pan gasket, install clutch components (hydraulic and mechanical/bearings) and hopefully drop this sucker in before Christmas.

Once the engine is in I can get the accessories in order, figure out what electric fan I want and etc, I would like to get the engine in before it gets cold considering I don’t think I’ve felt it be winter yet…

after that comes headers, electric oil pressure gauge, electrical water temp gauge

I assume you mean high volume? A high volume oil pump with stock pan can cause oil starvation issues, I have been told on several occasions. I'd suggest stick with a quality brand stock replacement
Yeah I got my eye on the melling one but I've been doing my homework (googling shit) and I've been seeing that issue you have mentioned, I may just run the stock one or purchase a new one just to be safe.
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