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Old 10-30-2020, 09:13 PM   #1
57taskforce
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Ď57 3100

Well guys, the time has finally come. The build thread for the truck that started it all for me. My 1957 3100. Unfortunately, because of my parents divorce I don’t have many pictures of the early days of this build. Somehow or another they were lost in the chaos of that event. I’ll post what I can of the early days. I’ve really not posted about this truck much at all, but I’ve owned it for the last 15 years. As a sophomore in high school I bought it from a close family friend for $1,000 and 3 cords of fire wood. I worked all summer at my job mowing a local cemetery and saved every penny possible to buy it. I got the truck home in March of 2006, by the later spring of 2006 my dad and I were fast at work tearing into it. It needed a ton of rust repair. About the lower foot or so of the cab is all new metal. It was already kind of 4x4 on the original frame but it was a cobbled together mess. It had a mid 70’s 305 with an sm465 and 203, feeding a 10.5” 14bolt 3:42 rear and an ancient closed knuckle 6 lug Dana 44 in 4:11 up front. The rear springs and hangers were from the same truck the rear came from. The rear Hangers were welded to the frame, and the front had some questionable work done as well when it was converted to 4x4, it also had some areas with some rust issues. The frame probably could have been saved but it would have been a lot of work.

The opportunity presented itself to buy a partially parted 88 full-size blazer. It had a supposedly newer 350 crate with a rebuilt corvette spec K-case 700R4, 4” suspension lift and 3” body lift. I bought the blazer, stripped the body from it and started to mock up the ‘57 cab and front clip on the new frame. Once we got it all mocked up and the cab mounts fabricated, we pulled it all back apart and started body work and final rust repair. This was all later in 06.

Fast forward to 2008 and we had the cab body work done and painted. At this point I moved to New Mexico the first time for 2 years, leaving the truck at home in Virginia. In that time my dad kept working on the truck and got new front fenders, new doors, and step side fenders. He painted and assembled the body.

June of 2010 I came back to Virginia and got right back to work, assembling the rest of the truck. From 2010-2013 I worked on it off and on and pretty much got it to where it is now. A lot happened in those years, I got married and life called us back to New Mexico at the end of 2013.
From 2013-present I haven’t done very much with it. It’s 85% complete and does run and drive on its own power but there’s things about it I’ve never quite been satisfied with which I will detail in the posts to come as well as outline my solutions to said problems. Here’s some pictures of where I’m at right now.
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Old 10-30-2020, 09:14 PM   #2
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Re: Ď57taskforce the one that started it all

Some of the bigger issues Iíve got with the truck in itís current state are related to the frame swap. As you all likely know the square body blazer frames have a rather large up kick just before the rear wheels. In order to make the body lines work decent we had to run a 3Ē body lift on top of already raised cab mounts to get the cab to sit at a height that would match the bed because the bed sits on said frame up kick. I also am not a fan of the drive train in it. I re sealed and added a very mild cam to the ďnewer crate 350Ē. It smokes pretty good once itís warmed up and I believe itís head related. Iím also not a fan of the 700R4 in general. Itís what we had to work with so itís what we ran but Iíve got more plans up my sleeve. The axles are a 10 bolt front end 12 bolt rear with 3:07 gears, with 35Ē tires the gear ratios are dismal to say the least. That 700R could be built to the hilt and still have trouble surviving long term with the final gear ratio in 3rd or OD.
I donít care for either of those axles all that much, I like 1 ton stuff. Hereís a few more pictures

Iíve though a lot about what I wanted to do here. Iíve got a vortec 454 long block that I could freshen up and throw at it. I actually bought an 06 silverado 1 ton from my work a few years ago for the 8.1/Allison combo with the intent to part it out and put the 8.1/ally into this truck. I ended up selling that truck complete shortly after I bought it because my father in law needed a reliable truck. Itís still on the road to this day.
Iíve got a few 350ís around... I could probably dig up an LS easy enough... Iím not sure which way Iíll end up going here. Iíve been entertaining a 12 valve Cummins more and more but they are spendy. Iíve also entertained an LB7 duramax but they are just as spendy as the Cummins...

For the transmission transfer case, if I keep it gas Iíve got and SM465/round 205 and a th400/round 205 to pick from. At this point I think Iíd run the th400 combo just because Iíve already got the light truck mega shifter and wouldnít have to figure a clutch out.

The frame is another can of worms...
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'98 Silverado LT K2500HD ECLB Vortec 454/4l80E: 6" lift 315/75/16's
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Last edited by 57taskforce; 11-02-2020 at 01:03 AM.
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Old 10-30-2020, 09:14 PM   #3
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Re: Ď57taskforce the one that started it all

So as I mentioned I’ve never been completely happy with the frame swap. From the top of the frame to the bottom of the cab is nearly 12”. It doesn’t look all that clean and I’m not sure how the body mounts will do over time with stress of the body mounts as well as the over extended height of the cab. At the end of the day is all 1/2 ton stuff which is fine for some, but like I said I prefer heavier duty trucks.

This brings me to the present. In September I acquired an ‘89 V30 (square body) cab and chassis truck. I bought the truck with the intent to part it out, keeping the drive train(aforementioned sm465/round 205 combo) for spares’ as well as the 14 bolt and front Dana 60 for my K20. The frame I hadn’t even thought much about until this week.

The thought occurred to me that I’ve got the ‘57 body mounts already built for the square body frame that I could easily swap over to the ‘89 frame. The good thing about the cab and chassis frame is that it’s near perfectly flat in the rear much like the 55-59 frame is, thus allowing the bed to sit at the proper height and allowing the cab to be lowered considerably. The frame is straight and 100% rust free.

Here’s a few of the donor... the cab is unbolted and ready for removal. The wheel base is 135.5”. I’ll need to make it 114” in order for it to be correct for the short bed. I plan to correct the rear fender placement and allow the use of steps instead of the filler panels we made up. The last picture shows where the 21.5” cut would be made. When we did it the first time we moved the fenders forward on the bedsides to compensate for the shorter wheel base of the blazer. I want to return everything to how it should be.
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'98 Silverado LT K2500HD ECLB Vortec 454/4l80E: 6" lift 315/75/16's
Ď10 Camaro 2SS/RS Aqua Blue Metallic

Last edited by 57taskforce; 11-02-2020 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 10-30-2020, 09:15 PM   #4
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Re: Ď57taskforce the one that started it all

So here we are, 15 years after it all began. It’s likely that it will begin all over again starting next year. My wife loves this truck even more than I do. She’s into the ‘50s decade as a whole. In April we will be celebrating our the tenth anniversary. I think I’m going to give this truck to her for one of my anniversary gifts to her.

Here’s my plans as of now and they likely will change some as I go.
I’m gonna do the 1 ton frame swap, Dana 60 front and 14 bolt rear. Next will be the Th400/205 which I’ll go thru and make sure they are good. I’ll decide on a power plant as the time gets closer. If it’s gas it will be fuel injected. I’m debating a long bed for it, still step side. We shall see there. I may paint it again as the desert is starting to show the age on the current paint, patina is cool too though... famous last words but I don’t think this swap should take all that long. The majority of the frame still has factory paint on it so I won’t take much prep to get it looking good. The interior still needs a fair amount of attention as well. This build thread is going to be more about going forward than where it’s at now and how it got there.
I will upload pictures tomorrow.
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Last edited by 57taskforce; 10-31-2020 at 01:29 AM.
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Old 11-14-2020, 08:01 PM   #5
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Re: Ď57 3100...The one that started it all!

Slight update. I’ve got the square pretty much parted out, the body is slated to head to northern Virginia in a week, the frame is pretty much bare except springs, shocks and the wiring and plumbing. It will rise from the ashes soon enough. The 465/205 combo are safe in the shop after getting steam cleaned, as are the front 60 and 14 bolt. The 60 and 14 bolt are
Most likely to go into my K20 but I’ve got another 60/14 bolt combo to swap into this one when the time comes. More recently I’ve been contemplating putting the 465/205 back into the frame when it comes time for the 57 body to go on it. Still may run a th400/205 combo I’ve got but I’m kind of in a manual kick right now.
On the other hand I’ve got a line on some 5.9 Cummins NA natural gas engines that are cheap. For those not in the know, the nat gas 12 valves are the same basic engine as the diesel other than some minor head differences and different pistons. The rods, crank, block, accessory drive, etc are the same. I rebuild the gas 12 valves all the time, so I’ve got good resources for the conversion parts if I went this way. I’ve even got a few 5.9 turbos laying around and the t/a exhaust manifold as well. Time will tell. That conversion will get expensive no matter what, once you factor in the drivetrain changes that have to come with it.

More to come soon.
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Old 11-18-2020, 01:25 PM   #6
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Re: Ď57 3100...The one that started it all!

I'm in to watch.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:08 PM   #7
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Re: Ď57 3100...The one that started it all!

Quick update, today I scored a big block that is going to go into the Updated version of the Ď57. All the machine work is done to the block, fresh hone, itís already decked and checked. Crank is already polished. Pistons and rods are checked and good as well. The vortec heads will need rebuilt but I may go with a better flowing set anyway. Hereís a pic of the bare vortec 454 block. The cylinders are fresh but have a very light film of surface rust that comes off with a rag. Iím going to clean them up and hit them with wd40.
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Old 02-11-2021, 01:17 AM   #8
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Re: Ď57 3100

Looking forward to the frame swap.
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Old 02-11-2021, 02:59 AM   #9
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Re: Ď57 3100...The one that started it all!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 57taskforce View Post
Quick update, today I scored a big block that is going to go into the Updated version of the Ď57. All the machine work is done to the block, fresh hone, itís already decked and checked. Crank is already polished. Pistons and rods are checked and good as well. The vortec heads will need rebuilt but I may go with a better flowing set anyway. Hereís a pic of the bare vortec 454 block. The cylinders are fresh but have a very light film of surface rust that comes off with a rag. Iím going to clean them up and hit them with wd40.
L29? Looks like a roller block? The heads have the little ski jump in the intake and swirl inducer in the chamber? Im in!
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Vortec 7.4 - L29 Blackbear tune, Five 0 Motorsports injectors, Chris Straub Cam, NV4500, divorced 205
52" front and 63" rear spring swap
D44 / 14bff - disc axles
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63" & B52 Spring Install http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...ng+swap+thread


NV4500 Reverse Build Thread http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...=reverse+build

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Old 02-11-2021, 09:27 AM   #10
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Re: Ď57 3100

Welcome aboard. Yes sir L29 it be. I’m going to build it up a little more than GM did. Likely keeping the vortec heads but that awfully tiny stock cam is not going back in. It’s not going to be degreed retarded like the stock cam is either. The L29 in my 98 K2500 has been a very good and reliable engine, just a little down on power for what it should be.
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Old 02-11-2021, 12:06 PM   #11
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Re: Ď57 3100

Yeah, in stock form they're lacking in the cam, valve train and the injectors but they can be woken up pretty good. I like mine a lot!

Ill be keeping an eye on this one as I also had a '57 Napco utility truck and Im running the L29 in my '63.

Yours is gonna be nice when done! Looking forward to the build!
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'63 k15 long step
Vortec 7.4 - L29 Blackbear tune, Five 0 Motorsports injectors, Chris Straub Cam, NV4500, divorced 205
52" front and 63" rear spring swap
D44 / 14bff - disc axles
Milemarker 9K and 10.5K hydraulic winches

63" & B52 Spring Install http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...ng+swap+thread


NV4500 Reverse Build Thread http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...=reverse+build

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Old 02-12-2021, 01:29 AM   #12
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Re: Ď57 3100

I’ve been spending so much of my free time and money on some of the loose ends on my K20 that I haven’t been able to do anything with it yet. Hopefully closer to summer I’ll be able to get it in. I’m gonna do an axle swap on my K20 using the axles that came from the K30 frame, once I do that I’ll have the axles from my K20 to make the k30 frame a roller again. Once that happens it’ll be about time to get after it. I’ll shorten the frame first and then start swapping everything over.

I need to find a truck that still has the L29 in it to steal the upper and lower intakes, engine harness from. I’ve got an efi blazer tank already in the truck as it sits now so that part of the swap will be easy. I think I’ll run an 0411 ecm because of the ease of tuning, with the 0411 you can run the L21 and 8.1 coil pack setup which is something else I’m entertaining, I believe that just requires the harness and coil/ignition parts from an 8.1. If I happen to find an 8.1 between now and then that’s what I’ll go with.
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Old 02-12-2021, 02:29 AM   #13
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Re: Ď57 3100

Quote:
Originally Posted by 57taskforce View Post
Iíve been spending so much of my free time and money on some of the loose ends on my K20 that I havenít been able to do anything with it yet. Hopefully closer to summer Iíll be able to get it in. Iím gonna do an axle swap on my K20 using the axles that came from the K30 frame, once I do that Iíll have the axles from my K20 to make the k30 frame a roller again. Once that happens itíll be about time to get after it. Iíll shorten the frame first and then start swapping everything over.

I need to find a truck that still has the L29 in it to steal the upper and lower intakes, engine harness from. Iíve got an efi blazer tank already in the truck as it sits now so that part of the swap will be easy. I think Iíll run an 0411 ecm because of the ease of tuning, with the 0411 you can run the L21 and 8.1 coil pack setup which is something else Iím entertaining, I believe that just requires the harness and coil/ignition parts from an 8.1. If I happen to find an 8.1 between now and then thatís what Iíll go with.
I like the COP set up. I was looking into it for mine and think I stopped when I read that I needed the 48x reluctor vs the 24x reluctor that I had on it. Didn't want to crack it open again. The 0411 is a great way to go. Data logging and all. WAY easier to tune. The upper / lower intake is kind of a goofy set up but it works and makes some decent torque. If money was no object, Id try and rock a port injected Eddy manifold or something like that. I really dig the L29 set up though. Been daily driving it since March when my commuter blew up. Hopefully this year I can re pin for the 0411 and get it tuned for the cam and injectors.

Couple of notes... There is an O ring in the main cap that the oil pump mounts too. That lesson sucked,

I couldn't get the stock FPR to work right for love or money. Ended up dead heading it and ran a corvette FPR / filter combo. Solved a bunch of problems!

If you run the stock heads and want to get rid of the non adjustable valve train (if your run other than stock) there's a couple of tricks that I learned the hard way. Let me know.

Many times, boat guys ditch their ZZ502 cams on ebay. They can be had fairly reasonable and I think you can retain the stock rollers and dog bones.

Cloyes does make a roller chain for it. There are 2 different ones. One is for non FI and the other is for the FI. But they do make a single roller for them.

Good stuff. Cant wait to see it come together!
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'63 k15 long step
Vortec 7.4 - L29 Blackbear tune, Five 0 Motorsports injectors, Chris Straub Cam, NV4500, divorced 205
52" front and 63" rear spring swap
D44 / 14bff - disc axles
Milemarker 9K and 10.5K hydraulic winches

63" & B52 Spring Install http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...ng+swap+thread


NV4500 Reverse Build Thread http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...=reverse+build

L29 - 7.4 Vortec Build http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...&highlight=L29
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Old 02-12-2021, 02:27 PM   #14
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Re: Ď57 3100

Noted. I looked thru your L29 build. Nice work! I’ll keep it handy when I get to that point. I’m not going to have my ‘98 for much longer but I always wanted to yank the motor and build it my way. For the 3100 I’ll be happy with 400-450 hp and 550+ torque. I really wish the whipples for these were still easy to find. I’ve seen some that made closer to 600 hp in that configuration.
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