Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by timelessbeing » Thu Sep 15, 2011 3:51 pm

Why socket head? :-k

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by Cobra » Thu Sep 15, 2011 4:30 pm

timelessbeing wrote:Why socket head? :-k
lol you know i thought the same thing but didn't bother ask
1998 GMC Safari AWD, BFGoodrich AllTerrain T/A
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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Fri Sep 16, 2011 12:55 am

Flange Bolts which are the OEM style are not readily available in the lengths required. Flange bolts have a smaller head with a built in washer. I was not sure the the cupped washers that are on the OEM rubber body mounts would accept a normal head cap screw and allow a socket to tighten it so I ordered the Socket heads for clearance. PLUS the socket heads are metric grade 12.9 which is equal to SAE grade 10... the OEM flange bolts are 10.9 which is equal to SAE grade 8.
The socket heads are not only more compact than hex head but stronger. I picked up some hardened metric washers to go under the bolts today... Hopefully this weekend I can get to the front end lift.

You guys lifting the vans with spacers need to realize there are tremendous lateral forces placed on these bolts every time you go around a curve or corner... increasing the distance between the OEM body mount and the uni-body structure of the van gives the forces that are at work on these bolts even more leverage, better to be safe than sorry. I would also recommend checking the torque of these bolts occasionally... during every oil change would be a good time.

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by Cobra » Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:13 am

Clearance eh... sounds like a reasonable concern i'll be looking forward to the installation pics
1998 GMC Safari AWD, BFGoodrich AllTerrain T/A
Jet performance tuner 91 octane preset, Jet under-drive pulleys
Rancho 999000 series shock, on-board controller to be installed later
DHC rock rails and skid plate Add-A-Leaf
G3500 front calipers
Zexel Torsen Diff
11" drums
180 amp Alternator
Long tru-cool 4590 trans cooler

1997 in storage (project coming soon)
1992 Chevy Astro "Z" vin (engine/trans in storage body crushed)
1995 Chevy Astro need lots of help project vehicle

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Sat Sep 17, 2011 10:09 pm

Did the lift today... didn't take step by step photos but a few key ones.

The springs were taken from an S-10 pickup... year unknown but it was the older square body style an extended cab version. When I looked at them a few days ago I thought they were 3 leaves plus 1 helper but when they lifted the truck with the fork lift turns out they were 4+1.

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Plan was to just change out the entire pack until I noticed one of the main leaf was broken at the shackle bushing...

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I decided to leave the main leaf in the van and just install all the other leaves from the S-10. I still ended up with a 4+1 pack.

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I was running behind due to a late start and wanted to get the major work out of the way today so I have no photos of the front spacer install. I can tell you the 14mm X 160 mm bolts with two washers worked perfect but for some reason the 12mm X 160mm Bolts would not draw the sub-frame up tight... I added four more washers under the heads of these bolts and they pulled up good.
I still have to re-drill the parking brake cable bracket, mod the fan shroud and get a longer steering shaft but it is done for today.

I gained 3" in the rear with the springs alone and I am at 3.5 - 4 inches in the front with the bars cranked all the way. Once I get the tires on I'll fine tune the front to level and match the rear.

I would say it took me 3-4 hours to do front and rear once I got done running around to get spring bolts when I found the broken spring. The front I had done in an hour and a half including the bumper relocation which I just raised the original brackets to the second hole and it fits perfect.

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by T.Low » Sat Sep 17, 2011 10:21 pm

:cheers: Right on, brother. Nice work. Some good info on this thread, thanks.
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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by LiftedAWDAstro » Sun Sep 18, 2011 6:01 pm

Looks good to me! :cheers:
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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Sun Sep 18, 2011 7:11 pm

Just got home from showing the wife the van and I tweaked the bars while we were there... ended up with 33" all the way around from the ground to the wheel arch. 3 inches all around from where I started and that is with the stock tires... I'm guessing another inch with the 235/75 tires.

Thanks for the approval guys...

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by 97CargoCrawler » Sun Sep 18, 2011 8:49 pm

Good work! I wish I had sourced my own parts for my lift. I spent almost as much for shipping as I did for Overlands overpriced kit. Do I understand correctly that you went through all this work just to put 235/75 tires on your van?
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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Sun Sep 18, 2011 8:59 pm

97CargoCrawler wrote:Good work! I wish I had sourced my own parts for my lift. I spent almost as much for shipping as I did for Overlands overpriced kit. Do I understand correctly that you went through all this work just to put 235/75 tires on your van?
Ummm Yea!
I don't want to go through gearing, etc. in order to use larger tires. Plus this truck will see a lot of highway duty running back and fourth to my cabin which is a 375 mile 6 hour trip each way so I want to keep it relatively mild as far as lift/tire size. No plans for mudding or serious off road use but it does need to go good in snow when needed.

The lift was really not a lot of work... I probably have two hours in research for the parts (spacers and bolts). Once someone said they used S-10 springs I went to my buddies bone yard and found what I wanted, all it cost me for the springs is the $10 that I tipped the guy who cut them out for me (it's good to have friends in every business) another 4 hours on the actual work so far and it's almost done.

Less than $100.00 and less than 10 hours research/labor for 3 inch lift. I paid $250 for 4 Cooper Discoverer AST tires that are virtually NEW (mounted but driven less than 50 miles) from Craigslist.

I'm a cheap SOB!

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by crash » Mon Sep 19, 2011 11:52 am

absolutely awesome thread. sticky!!
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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by TroySmith80 » Tue Sep 20, 2011 3:15 pm

great thread! Can you post dimensions from hub-centers to wheel arch? That way your lift can be compared to others' without tire size being a factor.

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Tue Sep 20, 2011 4:08 pm

TroySmith80 wrote:great thread! Can you post dimensions from hub-centers to wheel arch? That way your lift can be compared to others' without tire size being a factor.
Sure... I'll be installing the tires in a few days and I'll get the measurements then.

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:19 am

TroySmith80 wrote:great thread! Can you post dimensions from hub-centers to wheel arch? That way your lift can be compared to others' without tire size being a factor.
OK the hub center to wheel arch measurements are the same all around... 20.5 inches. I have no idea what they were before the lift because I measured the arch to ground for my starting point.

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Re: Home Brew Lift Kit 95 AWD

Post by SnoDrtRider » Fri Sep 23, 2011 12:41 am

Got quite a bit done today... Tires mounted and balanced, cut the front rotors because they were most likely never cut during the last few brake pad changes and were glazed and rusty in spots. Installed new front sway bar frame bushings and links (polyurethane from Auto Zone).

I also got to work on my rear shock mount relocation...


Since the lift worked out to be 3" the lower mounts were moved up 3"....

I used a caliper/compass set to 3"

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I used the compass to scribe an arc 3" above the stock shock bolt...

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I disconnected the shock from the lower mount and measured to find the center of the mounting plate and center punched a mark on the line I previously scribed.

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I drilled new holes to mount the shocks starting with a pilot hole, an angle drill comes in handy for this...

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I tried the shocks in the new position...

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I then cut a section out of the mount between the old and new mounting holes...

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Using a pry bar and adjustable wrench I was able to bend the lower portion of the bracket up to align with the new holes.

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I used an extra long bolt to draw everything together but was able to use the stock bolt once everything was compressed...

Image

Tomorrow it will get welded up to tie both parts of the original bracket together, get prettied up with a grinder and painted.

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