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new to 4x4

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by fxdwg, Nov 6, 2001.

  1. fxdwg

    fxdwg Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    need to learn as much as possible about 4x4. I bought 78 chevy swb and want to learn as much as poddible about truck. Has 400 small block/ 350 turbo/ 203? m&m lockout hubs. The guy I bought it from was full of s_____t. as far as doing everything right. Smeared silicone between trans and t case to keep from leaking. Please help with sites to learn about 4x4 parts, operation and for people that need things like windows for dummies
  2. Smither

    Smither Member
    Messages: 55

  3. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    First off let me welcome you to plowsite.

    A four wheel drive will drive a little differently than a Dyna Wide Glide. LOL

    If you are new to four wheeling in general a very important thing to know is that in snow and ice once you put on the brakes it is just another vehicle. You can slow down better with the engine than the brakes. A 4 x 4 will give you a great sense of stabillity on the road in inclement conditions but never let it get the best of you.
    Smither gave some very god advice. Chuck at the truck pages is very knowledgeable about the 4 x 4 vehicles as are most of the people on this web site.
    Good luck with your new truck and don't be backward about asking questions. These guys have driven them for years. There is nothing quite like having one in the winter.

  4. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    Or an FLH or, for that matter, an FXR.......................... ;)

    Your '78 sounds similar to a '77 Silverado stepside a friend of mine owned for years. Yes, I'd suggest Chuck's site as a good place to start, and I believe he's also got links to other 4x4/off road web sites.

    And as Bruce said, don't be afraid to ask questions here! You can also use the "search" feature on this site and read through the older threads - you may very well find answers to some of your questions there.
  5. plowjockey

    plowjockey PlowSite.com Sponsor
    Messages: 622

    I was trying to decipher FXDWG

  6. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    I know - that's why I threw the "FLH" (your preference) and "FXR" (what mine is based on) out there!

    This thinking along the same lines gets scary sometimes! :eek:
  7. fxdwg

    fxdwg Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    fxdwg meaning

    for all those wondering what fxdwg means,it is a Harley Davidson dyna wide glide, I also have a 1980 fxr, which is a Harley Davidson lowrider (which it is for sale). YES I'm into harleys!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Now back to the right questions at hand. I went ahead and removed the trans case and tranny and replaced the seal that was leaking. I figured by other questions that I have a nr203. I have M&M lockouts on my front end. I don't know what kind or how good they are because all I've heard of was Warn. Now I don't know if I have the switch over part in my 203 or if I even need to have it. The one that changes it from full time to a part time unit, or if its already been done.My 78 has a 4 inch body lift on it and I've heard that you need to recalibrate the axle housing to match the lift so it doesn't wear out your u-joints. Is this true? My front drive shaft I took out because I had a bad vibration in it when I let off the gas. it seemed to short when I looked at it. Does anyone know what lenght it needs to be or how I can figure out what length that I need to make it?
  8. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    See Bruce - we were right! I KNEW "fxdwg" meant "Harley"!

    I'm getting an FXR built right now, it'll be a little different though: Springer front end. (I just like the Springer "look", but I also wanted the "Rubber-Glide" comfort) It's based on a later FXR, so I've got an Evo engine. Pics WILL be posted once the bike is home! Getting antsy to see it done, not so much for riding (our season up here in Canada is pretty well over, I'm in "snow mode" soon) but 'cause it's my first Harley. :cool:

    Whereabouts in Missouri are you? I'm 99% sure I'm going to be attending the SIMA symposium in St Louis next June, and heading out from there for some additional (bike) touring. Might try to meet up with you then.

    OK, I'd better post something Chevy here or we'll get banned! ;) I think what you're referring to with regard to the axles being recalibrated is "tilting" the axles so the driveshaft joint angles aren't so extreme. Not 100% sure if this involves reworking the mounting points on the axle, or if it can be done with tapered lift blocks/shims. (My experience in the 4x4 field is pretty limited)

    As for the front driveshaft, how much of the spline is showing where the two halves join? And, is that splined connection nice & snug or getting sloppy? I don't know the exact length you'll need, but you'll need to make sure that the travel on those splines is adequate to cover both extremes of suspension travel.
  9. fxdwg

    fxdwg Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    the spline on the front drive shaft is showing about half maybe alittle more. when its installed you can push on it and it has about 1/2 inch of slop. Not good I'm sure. I was wondering if chuck or someone had a tech sheet that showed what was okay as far as the degree of angle on the driveshafts that was alright and what wasn't.
    I live in Springfield, Mo. And yeah I'd like to hook up with you in St.Louis. My buddy and I were planning on trying to attend some runs this year. Don't know if the wife will be around much longer so we're gone do some serious runs this year.

    Anyway I got a good driveline shop here, If I can get the okay on the angle I'll have my driveshafts redone. I'm starting to think that I got taken on this truck. But I figured the motor and wheels and tires were worth the $2500.00

    Thanks for the help, Dave
  10. MTCK

    MTCK Senior Member
    Messages: 346

    If your truck has a body lift, you shouldn't need to mess with drive line angles at all, as they should be at stock specs. Only when you go with a suspension lift will it mess with the location of the axle, relative to the transfer case.
  11. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    MTCK is right - if it's just a body lift on your truck it won't affect the driveline geometry any. (Duh - why didn't I notice that when I read your post? :confused: Guess that's what happens when I try to read after a long day at work!)

    So you shouldn't need any custom fabbing on the driveshafts, or "tilting" the axles, but it does sound like that spline is pretty worn.

    As June gets closer, we'll figure out where/when to meet up. I plan to head down to Ft Worth TX after St Louis to visit my grandmother, aunt & cousins - and Springfield is on the way! :cool:

    Any plans to head for Milwaukee/Sturgis for 2003?
  12. fxdwg

    fxdwg Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    body lift

    Well, I told you I didn't know a whole lot about this. It is a suspension lift, not a body lift. I do know that it is a four inch lift for sure. Sorry about that.

    Also I just purchased a 1986 shortbed 4x4. Price was to good to pass up. Also, I think I'm going to put the 400 out of my '79 into the '86 cause body wise it's in alot of better shape. And $$$ wise I think it'd be alot wiser. The '86 has a 305 w/ 4 speed. But L like automatics better, so I'll have to find another auto trans for it. Will the trans case fit onto an automatic?

    Yes Rob, Planning on sturgis run. Also you ought to check out little sturgis this year with us in Kentucky. Went last year and had a blast.
  13. 75

    75 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,382

    Not 100% sure, but I believe the manual trans/auto trans transfer cases are a bit different.

    If you're thinking of swapping powerplants, and want the auto, why not swap the entire drivetrain (engine/trans/transfer case) from the '79 into the '86? That way you know they'll go together, and you won't have to go hunting for another transmission/transfer case combo.

    The conversion should be pretty straightforward, GM didn't change a whole lot mechanically on those trucks from '73 up to '87 - although I think the frame on the '80's trucks wasn't quite as robust as on the '70's ones. Example: we have an '84 C-20 ton truck at my work, the front crossmember on the frame has cutouts in it, presumably to make it lighter. On one from the '70's, it's a solid piece.

    OK, talking "Harley" now, the SIMA symposium is June 6-8, and I had planned to be doing some visiting (as well as a bit of skydiving) over the July 1 long weekend near Chicago. Little Sturgis in Kentucky sounds like a good time - when/where is it? Hopefully I can fit it in - although I guess I WILL have to go to work a few days next summer! ;)

    DYNA PLOW Senior Member
    Messages: 295

    M&M on your lockouts stand for milemarker and yes they are of good quality.