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Old 10-27-2019, 10:43 PM   #1
Yerboogieman
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1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

This is my 1971 Chevy Suburban my dad bought in 1998 from my uncle who had it for a few years. The engine was rebuilt in the early 90's by a local shop in Graham and has about 154k miles on it now. The original transmission started slipping in 2012 and I replaced it with a JY TH350 at my work. That one died a very quick death and left me stranded one day. I had it rebuilt and got about 1000 miles until it died. I parked it in my backyard in 2013 and haven't touched it since. I bought and sold a 540iT this summer and made a huge profit off it so I decided to dump it all into the Suburban because I wanted a truck and fun toy.

Enough history. Now for the good stuff.

We decided we're gonna pull it out and swap the transmission. Then we wanted to pull the engine to refresh it. Then we also pulled the transfer case for a refresh as well. We promised ourselves it would not snowball. But that went out the window quick.

The BMW wagon I sold. Made a little over 330hp on the dyno at the wheel. Bigger intake manifold, nice exhaust, and a DUDMD stage 3 tune.



My dad pressure washing it after pulling it out.



For the longest time, I had no idea this tunnel came off.



Found a 700R4 to rebuild with a short shaft and all the upgrades I can do.



And after it came back from the shop. I had it rebuilt at TRC in Kent. Very helpful people and they asked the right questions.



It leaked. A lot. From everywhere.





Started pulling, I unbolted the transmission from the transfer case and we pulled the engine and trans as an assembly.





Found that ticking noise!



Started stacking up parts. We're reusing the Edelbrock Performer intake manifold my dad installed years ago, I bought an Edelbrock carb from my old boss and he threw in a Mallory Unilite distributor, coil, and wires.



After discovering the tiny 1.72/1.50 valves I broke down and bought some Summit heads that came in a Dart Head box. 2.02/1.60 valves.





It's bored .030 over and the bottom end looks great. Still has cross hatch marks on the cylinder walls. I ran a rag over the tops of the pistons, hence the dirty looking tops.

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1971 Chevy Suburban 4x4 Build Thread

Last edited by Yerboogieman; 10-29-2019 at 11:15 AM. Reason: Google Photos is not a good host
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Old 10-27-2019, 11:22 PM   #2
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Transfer case needs a little care. She's been beat down.


That's much better. My dad spent this weekend cleaning and resealing it this weekend. The main reason my transmissions were going out was a little O-ring on the shaft was completely shot. Resealed and ready to slap back in. It's been rebuilt once before so I wasn't worried about the bearings.


I dipped the front driveshaft and T-case adapter in the ultrasonic cleaner while I sandblasted the headers to ceramic powdercoat them.




I removed the fenders, seats, cluster, glovebox, heater, sound deadening, carpet and hacked up wiring harness today. No rat droppings luckily.





Me and this old harness have had some bad times so I am glad to be rid of it.



That's about as far as we got. I'm trying to get my dad to sign up for an account on here so he can post about it too. I know he wants to do a write up on how to measure and drill the frame rails for a 700r4 install.
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1971 Chevy Suburban 4x4 Build Thread

Last edited by Yerboogieman; 10-29-2019 at 11:25 AM. Reason: Resized images
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Old 10-28-2019, 11:51 AM   #3
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Sounds like a cool build. Not sure if its just me, but I'm not seeing any pics.
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Old 10-28-2019, 12:05 PM   #4
Yerboogieman
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

I see the pictures on my home computer and on my phone if I use Chrome or Opera, but not on internet explorer. They're embedded from Google Photos.

Edit: Got the images working and resized.
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1971 Chevy Suburban 4x4 Build Thread

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Old 10-29-2019, 11:33 AM   #5
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Here's a picture of the floor after I ripped the carpet out. Gonna be fun patching all this. Luckily, the front floor and the body panels is the extent of the rust. The rest of the floor is actually pretty good.

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Old 10-29-2019, 10:52 PM   #6
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yerboogieman View Post
Here's a picture of the floor after I ripped the carpet out. Gonna be fun patching all this. Luckily, the front floor and the body panels is the extent of the rust. The rest of the floor is actually pretty good.

You guys are moving right along on it. keep us posted on the progress.....

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Old 10-31-2019, 04:30 PM   #7
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

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You guys are moving right along on it. keep us posted on the progress.....

LockDoc
Will do. Should pick up again this weekend. Gonna have the GF helping rough up the floor on Saturday in preparation for primer while I clean the underside to rust proof and paint that if the weather cooperates. One day I'll have a garage big enough for this thing.
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Old 10-31-2019, 08:01 PM   #8
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

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Will do. Should pick up again this weekend. Gonna have the GF helping rough up the floor on Saturday in preparation for primer while I clean the underside to rust proof and paint that if the weather cooperates. One day I'll have a garage big enough for this thing.

Yeah, that's one thing about the Burbs it takes a little bigger garage to have room to work around it.....

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Old 11-12-2019, 01:34 PM   #9
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Progress has been moving steadily. Been doing some floor repair, sealing, drilling, welding, and cutting. I'll post some pictures tonight and remember to resize them.
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Old 11-20-2019, 10:16 PM   #10
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Been focused on getting it done I almost forgot to post. We started sanding and coating the floor in rust reformer





My girlfriend was under the hood getting that prepped. She fits in smaller places better than I do.



I got out the industrial RoundUp and went to work on this. I'll take another photo this weekend of it all cleaned up. Rain chased me inside. My dad started stripping the cowl and the metal underneath looks much better than I expected. Actually looks perfect for an original piece. I need to seal up the corners. They leak water into the cab.



And the moment I've been excited for. The engine is fully assembled and ready to go back in.



I ordered a new custom driveshaft and it's sitting in my garage right now. ready to go back in. It's gonna feel so nice with a whole new drivetrain. After it's back together I'll chop a hole in the firewall and put the new harness in. I might take a video of first start up and the tuning process on the Dynojet.

While this build hasn't been cheap, it's cheaper and cooler than a new truck. I'm anti car payment.
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Old 11-20-2019, 10:46 PM   #11
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

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Wow you have a mobile garden (almost)...

Looks like the girlfriend is doing a great job. Tell her to keep up the good work.

How is the rust reformer to work with. looks like it goes on pretty smooth.

Vroom, Vroom. You will be driving this thing before you know it.

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Old 11-22-2019, 02:05 PM   #12
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Kinda sucked to spread on to be honest. There are some thin spots because if the surface was too smooth it would act like water on a waxed car. Even with sanding and prep with lacquer thinner.


It's so close to being running but something keeps coming up that requires attention.
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Old 11-26-2019, 12:29 PM   #13
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Looking good, I'm subbing to follow along
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Old 12-01-2019, 09:49 PM   #14
Yerboogieman
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

Currently battling blistering cold and rain. Lately we've been getting about 3 to 4 hours of usable sunshine on weekends. But there is still progress. I wanna hit the snow with this thing so bad.

We got the transmission bolted to the engine, torque converter installed.



We measured everything before hand and even had the transfer case mount slid on the back of the transmission. Took measurement after measurement and we were still .20 off the mark. If only Advance Adapters made it just a little bit thicker. We ended up milling the shaft and everything went together as planned. The gap between the transmission and transfer case is exactly 1.875. I wish I would have put the starter on with the engine out to check the clearance.











Went to the local Amsoil dealer and picked up a bunch of various fluids. I'm just going to use BMW blue coolant and BMW DOT4 because it's cheap and I have a ton of it on hand. I use it in everything I build.



Also, my dad is having trouble using his account. If there are any admins that can help, his username is Riff_Raff.
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1971 Chevy Suburban 4x4 Build Thread

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Old 12-02-2019, 12:04 AM   #15
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Re: 1971 Suburban 4x4 build "The Big Ugly"

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Looking good.

I will see what I can find out on his account. Can you give me a heads up to what kind of problem he is having?

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