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3500hd with monroe 4x4 conversion?

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by wing 97, Jan 21, 2008.

  1. wing 97

    wing 97 Junior Member
    from ct
    Messages: 21

    Anybody ever hear anything good or bad about the 3500hd (15000#) with the monroe 4x4 conversion? I am considering looking at a used one thats for sale but not sure if this was a dependable design or if it was a headache. I am thinking that you could run into abnormal tire wear or if the gm automatic transmission could handle the weight. Any thoughts would be appreciated!
     
  2. bike5200

    bike5200 Senior Member
    from Ky
    Messages: 437

    I have a "91" 3500HD, I converted to 4 wheel drive. I ended putting it back to 2-wheel drive after a few years. I devoiced mounted a NP 205 Transfer case and used a Chevy Dana 60 dual wheel front axle. Had to get some 8 lug, 19.5 front rims. The reason I put the truck back to 2-wheel drive is because I did not like the noise of the transfer case and there was drive shaft angle issues and there was some vibration. When this conversion is done the truck is lifted about 6 inches because of the straight axle on the front. You lose the turn ups in the existing axle on the 2-wheel drive truck. While I was doing the conversion it was a learning experience. Weather you have a 2 wheel drive or 4 wheel drive truck the transmissions should not be an issue. There are some companies that do these conversion to the trucks. I think one is Tulsa Truck, they have a web site. This Tulsa Truck uses a Dana 70 Front axle and I think a Borg-Warner transfer case. :drinkup::drinkup:

    Steve
     
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2008
  3. wing 97

    wing 97 Junior Member
    from ct
    Messages: 21

    Thanks for the reply Steve. This particular truck was converted by Monroe truck equipment I believe in Wisconsin? I am wondering if the "Professional" (haha) version was dependable. I believe the front end they used on this truck was a Dana 70.
     
  4. bike5200

    bike5200 Senior Member
    from Ky
    Messages: 437

    I saw a truck on e-bay, is that the one? These companies that do the conversion have to know what they are doing. Converting a truck you open the door up for all sort of liability issues. Some of these companies convert school buses to 4 wheel drive that haul kids. Most likely that truck was converted out of the factory, so there had to be some talk with GM so the Warranty was still in effect. I would not have any issues with buying a truck that was converted by one of these companies. I went to Monroe's web site and they used a Dana 70. A few things you can do, call Monroe and talk to someone about that truck. You will need to know what was used, Transfer Case, Front Axle etc. in case you need parts in the future. Do a search on the web. Search; Monroe truck 4x4 problems- Monroe 4x4 conversion lawsuits and what ever might give you information about it. I saw a 90 something 3500HD in a Truck Trader a while back and it said it had a Allison transmission in it. Take the Vin # to a Chevy dealer and they can tell you what transmission is in it. I will say one thing, That truck looks good and you have one of the few that are out there.

    I would test drive it before you buy it and look it over and see if it was taken care of.

    :drinkup::drinkup:

    Steve
     
  5. Sharkman

    Sharkman Junior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 2

    3500hd 4x4

    columbus ,OH craigslist > cars & trucks - by owner
    1997 3500HD 4x4 15000 GVW - $10000 (NEWARK,OH)

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Reply to: sale-988603462@craigslist.org [?]
    Date: 2009-01-11, 12:27PM EST



    3500 HD 4X4 With Tulsa Truck 4x4 conversion.Came from Craighead Electric Jonesboro,Arkansas.One OWNER one DRIVER before me.No RUST.Well USED.Dana 70 Front open knuckle.Dana 80 rear. 5.13 gears with LOCKERS front and rear.Disc breaks front and rear.4l80e trans 10 LUG 19.5 wheels.Good tires.All service records every 3,000 miles.All new GM motor at 168,292 miles.All new gm trans at 217,635.Transfercase at 210,283.All new ac at 266,000.MOTOR HAS KNOCK don't know if it rod or injector.It is a 6.5 turbo diesel.280,000miles on truck now.VERY RARE FIND!! Ready for your DURAMAX!!!! THANKS
     
  6. NICHOLS LANDSCA

    NICHOLS LANDSCA PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,310

    There are a few around here, I talked to a guy in Menards parking lot about his. He liked it he hadn't had any problems conversion related. If the truck is aligned correctly why would tire wear be an issue? As for the tranny and weight what difference does it make if it's 4x4 or 4x2 it is still a 15,000lb GVW.
     
  7. aeronutt

    aeronutt Senior Member
    Messages: 262

    On the original Monroe topic: I have never owned one, but I've heard good things about the conversion. Supposedly it rivals a factory configuration. If you plan on plowing with it you might want to check the frame mounts for adequate strength. I'm concerned that the GVW is extra high due to rear frame strength, not front frame. If it has the same frame on front as any other 3500 truck, but you hang a 12' municipal plow on it due to GVW rating you are asking for trouble...

    On the Tulsa Trucks posting on Craigslist: A 15K GVW rating with 10-lug 19.5" wheels sounds more like a 4500 or 5500, not a 3500. That's some serious axle hardware. Too bad it has a bad motor. You have to expect a truck like that to have some HARD miles on it though...
     
  8. Snowaway

    Snowaway Senior Member
    Messages: 248

    I have never seen one but it sounds like a bad idea.
     
  9. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,737

    Before the 4500/5500s came out with the dmax there was no chevy/gmc to fill that slot as far as I know before the 6500 line. They therefore made the 3500hd with the 15k gvwr to fill the slot. As far as I've seen they all had the 6.5 or a 454 and a 4l80e or nv4500 transmission all all came in Cab and Chassis configuration. Also all were 2wd unless monroe or similar upfitter got ahold of them directly from GM. I know 2 people with them, I'd love to get a 4x4 one and drop a 12v in it.

    Also the city here has a few that they plow side streets with. Havn't paid much attention to them other then they were obviously 4x4 with municipal grade plows in the 10ft range.

    Why does it seem like a bad idea?
     
  10. Snowaway

    Snowaway Senior Member
    Messages: 248

    It just seems like something best left to the factory. But like I said I have never been around one. Here in Alaska there are more 4X4s than 4X2s so they are easy to come by. I don't mean any offence guess I should have kept quite on this one.
     
  11. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,737

    No worries. There is a handful of companies that upfit brand new trucks. Most are known for cosmetic conversions such as southern comfort, regency, centurion,etc. Others, mostly Monroe specialize in work modifications such as 4x4 conversions, cab and chassis trucks with dump beds or service bodies, etc.
    They all work closely with the manufacterer allowing them to still carry the warranty on the rest of the vehicle.

    It's not a factory option but pretty close to it. I wouldn't think twice about buying something such as that, companies like that know what they are doing.
     
  12. aeronutt

    aeronutt Senior Member
    Messages: 262

    After seeing this thread yesterday, I was surprised to actually see one of these 3500HD trucks today. It was as Mark said, a Cab-n-Chassis 4x2 with a dump bed. It was configured with a 2-foot deep tall toolbox directly behind the cab and then a 9-foot dumping flatbed behind that. The 10-lug 19.5" wheels where hard to miss and the disk brakes showing through them were truly MASSIVE. I doubt a 16" wheel would fit over them. I took a good look at the frame behind the front wheel and it does look bigger than the 1997 3500 (non-HD) that my little brother had. The front axle is a solid cast unit similar to the front axles used in bread trucks. It is slung under very beefy flat leaf springs similar to the way Ford SuperDuty trucks of the era were configured so I think bolting a solid 4x4 axle in that space would be very easy to do. Overall, it looks worthy of the 15K GVW rating because it's not just bigger springs and axles on a 3/4 ton frame.
     
  13. lilweeds

    lilweeds PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,178

    If you can find one, some of the later years (01-02) had dmax motors in them. Many of them were used for wreckers around here.
     
  14. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,737


    Never seen one with a dmax in it. I know of a guy with an 02 and it's a 6.5.
     
  15. NICHOLS LANDSCA

    NICHOLS LANDSCA PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,310

    No they didn't. 454 or 6.5 only. Comeon guys don't makeup stuff
     
  16. lilweeds

    lilweeds PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,178

    No really I know someone with one that has the Dmax/Ally, it's an 02.
     
  17. Sharkman

    Sharkman Junior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 2

    Heavy chevy

    S-10HD,1500HD,2500HD,3500HD LOLOL:dizzy: 19.5 10LUG OR STAY ON THE PORCHwesport
     
  18. peneumbra

    peneumbra Junior Member
    Messages: 1

    I have a '94 3500HD 4x4 converted by Tulsa Truck. I'm about to replace the 6.5 with a 12-valve Cummins P-pump engine, which will provide plenty of power.

    These trucks are great: Dana 70 up front, Dana 80 in the rear, 19.5s, big discs, 15,000 GVW. They appear to be considerably more stout than the F-450/550 Fords and 4500/5500 Dodges...