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p0508 01-09-2019 06:14 PM

'71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Hello all,

I was on here years ago as "71cheyennezz4", life story aside I've went on build quite a few toys mostly LS based cars and LS swapped 1st gen camaros ect ect. After getting rid of my 71 years ago i've come full circle and decided to build a 2wd C10 with an LS and T56.

I'm doing this thread to hopefully help out someone staring down a similar build, I don't have the time nor patience to get on here very frequently and type paragraphs of build information and give a play by play of what I did on any given day. Instead, I'll give a little history on the truck and an explanation here and there and an included link to a google photo album that will continually get updated with progress on the truck. You will also find my email and phone number in this thread, don't hesitate to shoot me an email, text or give me a call with any questions, I'll do my best to help you out.

The Truck:

I picked up a 71 C10 longbed cab sitting on a 71 chevrolet leaf spring shortbed frame. Everything on the frame was factory original, the previous owner had POR-15'd it before selling it to me. He bought a new box, fenders, grille and other bits and pieces. It was a great stripped down starting point for what I wanted to do with it, I paid $5500 for it.

You will find the build sheet below with prices listed for most everything followed by an album with tons of pictures in it from start to finish. I started this build June of 18 and its about 2 weeks away from running and driving, I was gone from august to november so i think its coming along pretty quick. Right now I'm waiting on my new rear end (due within the next 2 weeks), my seats from TMI, have to take the measurements for the driveshaft and get those sent off, and finish up some wiring and odds and ends.

In summary,

1971 C10 SWB frame with a LWB Cab
Swapped from leaf spring rear to full ridetech coilovers
All aluminum L33 5.3 with BTR Cam/Springs LS6 Heads/Intake
Holley HP EFI
New Tremec T56 Mag (TR6060)
New strange 9inch 3.40 gears detroit truetrac
Ridetech full front and rear coilovers
Factory 73-87 Spindles and disc brakes, wilwood rear discs with ebrake.

Build Sheet:

Photo Album:

Phone: nine 1 two six five 6 four four zero 5

Feel free to ask any questions, i'll try and get on here for updates and such but no promises.


p0508 05-01-2019 01:17 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Little update. Bed floor done, me and a buddy cut the wood and got it all installed in a day. Painted the US mags black. Put wilwoods on the front and LED lighting from united pacific all around. Check pic link above for additional photos. Also added a kicker hideaway 8inch sub under the drivers seat to complete the entire stereo system. It topped it all off nicely, I couldn't have asked for it to sound better. Also took it down to a local collision shop and had it put on of the frame machine and pushed around to the factory GM measuerments. At some point in it's life it was hit in the passenger side in front of the wheel and bent the frame horns over. $300 dollars later the frame is completely straight.

p0508 05-01-2019 01:32 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Current: It's been driving for about 1800 miles now, worked out all the small kinks, continuously working the tune with holley efi and driving it to work every day.

Next few weeks:

Relocate the A/C compressor to a low mount between the frame rail and the block. Relocate the battery to either the drivers side or rear of the truck. Full intercooled turbo setup.

cornerstone 05-01-2019 01:55 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Absolutely an amazing truck build. Can't wait for the TURBO setup!! I remember when you posted back in Jan... I drooled all over my screen from the link you added. So many detailed pics helps me out on my truck.

How are you liking the CPP steering column? I have the same one still in the box and am curious to know what you think.


p0508 05-01-2019 09:51 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
You get what you pay for with the cpp column. Depending on where you have it tilited on a hard bump it will move up and down. I can't complain about it being cheap, because it was. I might end up converting to rack and pinion and going with the shorter flaming river. But the flaming river prices make my head explode.

cornerstone 05-01-2019 01:37 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Thanks for the honesty. That is about what I was expecting.

808_67C10 05-01-2019 01:57 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
**insane** What a killer truck... cant wait for more!

siggyfreud 05-01-2019 04:01 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Look great! What gauge bezel is that, looks really nice.

Edit: Never mind I see you included a build sheet, which is awesome thank you!

p0508 05-02-2019 02:27 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Hope the build sheet helps some people out. I have some things I need to go through and add. I changed the fuel system to a full return style instead of using the c5 Vette regulator/filter that and the little kicker sub needs to go on there. I'm sure I'll find more things I missed.

Old_Truck_Fan 05-02-2019 07:12 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Nice build! Thanks for sharing all the detailed pictures. Are you using the standard Tremec T56 Magnum rear shifter location just flipped forward? How do you like the shifter position and throw now that you've had some seat time? Was it all spec'd by American Powertrain?

808_67C10 05-02-2019 08:10 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
What are those seats out of? I didnt see them in your spreadsheet.

p0508 05-02-2019 09:32 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost

Originally Posted by Old_Truck_Fan (Post 8518264)
Nice build! Thanks for sharing all the detailed pictures. Are you using the standard Tremec T56 Magnum rear shifter location just flipped forward? How do you like the shifter position and throw now that you've had some seat time? Was it all spec'd by American Powertrain?

Its the standard T56 Mag with the tremec shifter swapped around. It fit perfectly where i wanted it on the high hump trans no complaints there. I ordered it through american powertrain with their hydraulic setup. The throw isn't bad, I had to go through hursts catalog and pick a shifter i thought was the right dimensions. Had to modify the base a little bit and cut a different bolt hole for it but other then that its in a great spot.

Now for the bad:

It's a known issue of the T56 magnum/TR6060 the 2nd gear synchro is very sensitive. After 1800 miles the synchro is completely gone, try and put in 2nd over 20mph and it's straight gear. I throughly followed the break in and have years upon years of experience with the T56, I adjusted and re adjusted and confirmed their is no clutch drag, i bled and re bled the slave/master, I changed fluid again etc etc, i did my due dilligence to make sure it wasn't something I could have prevented.

I have contacted American powertrain multiple times and received not very good customer service in regards to warranty and just timely replies. They want me to tear out the trans and send it back to them so they can disassemble and inspect it. After I finally got ahold of them I get an email stating i have to return it to them for inspection, and that was it. No RMA number no instructions, not where to send etc etc. I replied asking for instructions, and still haven't gotten a response.


Thu, Apr 25, 10:55 PM (7 days ago)

I called you earlier today and expressed my warranty claim with you over the phone. I would like to take this to emails so I can start a paper trail on this and put my claims in writing to hopefully assist with the claim process, and provide transparency during the process.

The issue:

When going over 20mph and attempting to downshift into 2nd gear and 2nd gear old it grinds hard.

This first occurred about a week ago or maybe i first noticed it when turning into my neighborhood and attempting to grab 2nd gear to coast around the corner.

The transmission:

1300 miles on the clock and its sitting behind a maybe 350 horsepower 5.3L truck motor with no power adders other then a small cam.

The clutch:
GM LS7 Clutch

American powertrain hydraulic kit and throwout bearing.

Additional Notes:

I followed the break in procedure and used GM Synchromesh during the break in process. At around the 500 mile mark I drained the GM synchromesh and utilized Pennzoil synchromesh found at a local parts store.

At about 1300 miles I first noticed an issue.

My additional steps:

Saturday April 27th I'm going to drain the Pennzoil synchromesh and replace with the exact GM synchromesh used during break in.

I also put the rear end on jack stands and tested the clutch and pedal adjustment for issues on engagement/disengagement and found nothing wrong. The tire does not move when moving in and out of any gear nor does it drag at all.

The clutch master has been rebled as well.

Hope this information helps throughout the warranty process, this transmission has been babied from day one and it's disappointing to be having this issues.

Please keep me in the loop on this issue so hopefully we can get it resolved quickly.


Tue, Apr 30, 12:08 PM (2 days ago)

Hey Drew I saw you had called and I have been out of the office with my wife being in the hospital. I did talk to the builders and we will need to get the transmission back to do an inspection and see what is causing that issue. There are no known issues at the moment and there is nothing indicating we have a quick fix.

My email back and still haven't received a reply:

Apr 30, 2019, 5:59 PM (2 days ago)

So, where do I need to send it? What do I need to do other then take it out and drain the fluid? Just let you know when it's been taken out? What is the turn around time for this?

p0508 05-02-2019 09:33 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost

Originally Posted by 808_67C10 (Post 8518303)
What are those seats out of? I didnt see them in your spreadsheet.

The seats are Procar rally, you can get them through jegs, summit etc. I think i got mine from amazon. I also bought their bracket but you will have to modify the legs to shorten it, it comes to tall. Part numbers are below.

Procar Rally Seats and Bracket
Amazon Seats 80-1050-51 740.00
Summit Bracket 81540 170.00



Something to note with these seats. If you look in the pictures you will see the seat backs for them are pretty thick, if you are a taller guy this might pose a problem as it forces you to move the seat a little further forward to get any sort of recline in them to not feel like you're sitting straight up in the air. It will put your feet closer to the pedals and make you bend your legs more to actuate them. I'm 5' 7" so I dont have tall people problems ;) they are perfect for me.

p0508 05-02-2019 09:50 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Added a peep mirror from jegs, after researching on the internet and people saying they are garbage, i ordered a convex and a straight one. The straight one sucks, the convex one is amazing, it works great. I really only wanted it for backing into parking spots so I could see the line, but it works well for traffic.

p0508 05-18-2019 10:32 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Update: Still no contact from American powertrain, stay away.

I ended up calling AMP performance in phoenix who in turn told me to go straight to tremec, get an RMA number and send it out to him in phoenix to fix and upgrade the trans under warranty.

Tremec is great to deal with in person.

p0508 06-05-2019 10:19 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost

T56 came out today to head back to Tremec for the upgraded 2nd gear synchro to be put in.


Relocating battery to rear
Relocating A/C Compressor to low passenger side mount using SD7B10 Compressor
Move A/C lines into passenger fender for routing around Turbo

Done recently,

Removed LS6 intake and put on a FAST 92 with 92mm TB
Added elite engineering catch can.
Swapped out Tanks Inc fuel pressure regulator with one from aeromotive, the Tanks INC regulator would not hold steady pressure.

p0508 06-05-2019 10:25 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
I have a holley passenger side high LS A/C Compressor bracker, tensioner and Sanden SD7H15 A/C compressor if anyone is looking to save a few bucks.

p0508 07-07-2019 08:49 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
And the updates:

Trans is back from tremec and in, amazing company to deal with customer service top notch.

Removed the LS7 clutch and went with an LT1-S from monster, much better.

Relocated the battery to rear frame rails

Relocated A/C compressor to lower passenger frame rail, switch to SD7B10 Mini compressor

Cleaned and tucked all engine bay wiring

Installing vintage air horizontal dryer to the bottom of core support and moving some lines around

Removed super plush carpet i hated and replaced with poly vinyl floor

Cleaned and tucked a lot of wiring inside the truck

Plasma cut the inner fenders back, looks a little cleaner and I can get to the shock adjustment.

Last but not least. Flew to California, picked a nearly 50 year old car with no a/c, no heat, no overdrive, and no windshield wipers. Drove it from San Jose down highway 1 to Santa Barbara over to LA, Palm springs, Phoenix and then home.

It was great.

MDPotter 07-08-2019 06:52 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
That Camaro is badass man. If I were going to build a car, that would be it.

p0508 01-12-2020 12:05 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Truck is for sale.

SCOTI 01-13-2020 11:06 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
GLWS. Nice combo of parts....

MDPotter 01-13-2020 11:58 AM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
So what's the next project???

Jolin 06-09-2020 05:29 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
Hi I see you used a Procar 81540 seat bracket, would you be able to prove the Height width and length dimensions I would like to mock my seats up before I purchase the bracket. thanks

p0508 04-17-2021 08:41 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
I noticed I had quite a few questions in my private messages. I don't frequent these forums much so if you have ANY, and I mean any questions about the build I did please feel free to shoot me a text, call or email and I will help you out as much as I can.


p0508 04-17-2021 08:46 PM

Re: '71 LS/T56/Ridetech build with cost
5 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by MDPotter (Post 8659043)
So what's the next project???

Here is the next project. Was my fathers college truck, been sitting in a barn for 18 years. I have a brand new box and doors off of another 1971 that was wrecked in the early 70s as well. It was painted red and white by my father in the late 70s, he wasn't much a fan of the original color.

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