Author Topic: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits  (Read 57234 times)

Offline Irish_Alley

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On another post we have a guy asking for "what size lift" we're guessing at this point. One thing I want to do is have people with lift kits with a known height, measure something. I have never installed anything other than a 6", I didn't have to replace the front drive shaft but it stretches it beyond the safe limit and while it will work it wonít hold up for much abuse. I also replaced the brake lines with stainless steel ones. I don't know what size lift you should replace the lines but while you're working on it may be a good time to replace them just to be on the safe side

Brake lines
Why waste money when you donít have too or donít have the extra money for those stainless braided fancy brake lines? When you can buy cheaper brake lines that will do the same thing


Front brake lines

New brake lines from 2wd C10 of the same era.. Slightly longer and bolt right on.

Part # 36760 from Napa. Measures around 24.5" from end to end.
I've gotten most of what I need now but one of the biggest issues with these trucks is that in 1978? They switched from a 7/16" banjo fitting to a 10mm banjo fitting on the caliper. Now this means one could swap the calipers but that is going to be more money.

What I have discovered is NAPA part # 38622 and 38623 which are left/right brake hoses which are 26" in length but its a 10mm banjo nut. People have drilled this out successfully to 7/16" without any issues and that is what I think I will be doing.


Rear brake line

Napa part # 381272 which will give you 22.50" of length. I'm not sure what that part number is for or from but it worked well for me. I think it'll work mostly on the 73-80 years but may work on the later years as I'm not sure what the fittings are after 80.



Front brake line
no LT Part number from autozone
Rear brake line
381272 brake line is for a 2000+Chevy
78843 autozones part number
Totals about $62 vs $105
 


Lift Kits

1 what size lift with a brand name if you have it (approx year it was installed) and what series truck (k10, k20 and k30)

2 from the top of the axle to the bottom of the frame (not the bump stop if you can measure directly on top of the frame with a plumb bob or something)

3 what size tires you have and do they rub

DO NOT USE THIS POST AS "WHAT WILL FIT MY TRUCK" THESE TRUCKS MAYBE DIFFERENT FROM GVWR, TIRES AND SPRING COMPANY. USE THIS AS A GUIDE ONLY

6" lift

Ok Irish Here you go.

1. 6 inch lift. Rugged Trail brand- no longer in business. Bought it in 1985-1986 from Champion mail order. Installed on a 1979 GMC k-15 1/2 ton. 4 inch block and 2 inch add a leaf in the rear.

2. 17 5/8 inches measured from the top of the axle to the bottom of the frame right at the bump stop. Now I also want to add that my bed is off also.

3. I have a set of QR Buckshots which are advertised at 36 inches tall. They measure 35 1/2 inches tall mounted on Chevy rally wheels. They have 1/2 inch of tread.They are going to have to be replaced due to dry rot. In any event the tires never rubbed the body at any point. This is the second set that was put on the truck too.

4. My factory bumpers are exactly 31 inches off the ground also. This was measured to the bottom of the bumper.


It's been a long while since I've owned the truck I talk about a lot. I can't give any measurements. I had a Trailmaster lift (still in business, no longer supply to the leaf spring market I don't think)
1 6" lift. 4" blocks, 2" add-a-leaf.
2
3 No rubbing even in the mountains with 39-15/15 Mickey 'T's Bajas

14 front
17 1/2 rear
Ranching 6" spring bought used
Rough Country RCX Shocks
Super lift stainless brake hoses
34"

1) 6" super lift from summit - includes front springs, rear 5" blocks (with my stock springs), 4" steering arm. Installed 2015 on my 85 k10 short bed.
2) not sure about the length axle to bottom of frame - PM me or i will try and measure it later.
3) 33x12.5x15 - looks pretty good. no rubbing at all.
i installed extended steel braided brake lines on the front - the stock lines look questionable. Also, i ponied up and bought a 2" drop drag link to add to the 4" raised steering arm.



4" lift

1973 GMC K2500

1) Older Rancho 4" lift. No idea when it was installed, but think sometime in the mid-1990's

2) Front 11 1/2"; Rear 14 1/2"

3) Republic Trail Mark 235-85-R16 (30 1/4" tall), no rub

1978 Chevy K10

1)  4" Rancho Lift - done a long time ago

2)  Don't know - can check later

3) 33 12.5 15 - no rubbing, plenty of clearance.

Things I've heard from others while lifting....

Frame will get weak and potentially crack around steering box, and also near shock mounts on rear.  I'm dealing with this now, crack on the frame towards the back that I have to box/weld to repair.




4" lift
245/75r16

Procomp 4" front springs ; ORD Rear Shackle flip with stock hangars and leafs.

Front: 12.5" from axle tube to bottom of frame
Rear: 13.75" from axle tube to bottom of frame




1987 V10 silver
Installed rough country 4" lift springs front and rear in 2013
35"*12.5 general grabbers on M/T 15*10.5
Frame to Axel front: 14"
Frame to Axel rear:16 3/8

I rebuilt this truck back in 2011/2012 and posted the progress here on the forum.

1: 4"  Rough Country Lift Kit. It was installed and completed in early 2012. The truck is a 1976 K20 series with a 468ci BB motor. I did new front springs and 4" blocks in the back. I did have to install longer brake lines and the stabilizer bar extensions. I also installed a drop steering box arm.

2: Top of axle to bottom of frame:
Front: 13.25"
Rear: 15.5"

3:Tires are Fierce Attitude LT315 / 75R 16
They measure 34" tall and 10.5" wide at the tread.
As you turn, the outside of the tread could just catch the rear of the front fender so I trimmed them slightly.
If the offset of the rim was set in just a bit, I think they would have fit without modification.

4: From bottom of bumper to the ground:
Front: 27.5"
Rear: 28"

Shocks for 4"

I had posted about this back in 2001, but this seems a good spot to repost...

'73 GMC K2500. It has a Rancho 4" lift and had Rancho shocks (RS4000?, maybe) for over 14 years.

I was going to replace my old shocks with Rancho, until the parts store told me $50 each. Plus, Rancho was all they had listed for that truck with a 4" lift. I drive this truck almost daily on the road and some off road. But, I personally didn't think I needed the Rancho's, especially for $200 plus tax

SO, I did some research and measuring and calling buddies and wound up spending a total of $100 for all four shocks with a lifetime warranty (save the receipt)...

I found that for the rear end, rear shocks for a 2001 Dodge 1 ton dually (3500), V10 4x4 match almost perfectly.  Almost; the full extension is slightly less, but my truck would put stress on the parking brake cables with the rear end dropped (so a little less extension is good for me). Compression was the same as the Rancho's Also, I had to pull the steel sleeves out of the rubber bushing- that was it. These were Monroe at $25 each.

For the front, I found that 1993 Dodge 3/4 ton (Ram 250) 360 V8 4x4 front shocks were exactly the same in respect to length both in compression and extension. I had to make a new bushing out of steel pipe (some slight reaming with a 1/2" drill bit) and trim the sides of the rubber bushing on the bottom. About an hour extra to modify the shock. The fronts are Gabriel at $25 each.

I wound up getting two different brands because one parts store stocked the rears and one stocked the fronts and I didn't want to wait for an order. Overall, it's been 4 years and I've been very pleased with the setup and have yet to find any deficiencies with my adaptation.

Also, back when I first got the truck in the late 90's, I did the C-series front hose swap. I can't find the receipt to tell what brand, but the hoses I purchased measure out at 25 1/2".  I've found that lengths of pre-made hoses will vary from catalog lengths and also depending on different manufacturers and even between different batches. This seems especially true with factory style replacement A/C hoses.  Whenever I have to do this again, I'll be comparing brake hoses from several parts stores and brands to try to get the maximum length.





2.5" lift

1978 Chevy K10

1.  Superlift 2.5" lift bought this passed year

2. Not sure

3. Goodyear Wrangler 33x12.5x15



No lift


I don't have access to my truck for a few days.  But I can tell you that 33x12.50 tires will fit fine with no rubbing at all on stock rally rims and NO lift

35s will fit with slight rub at full lock and no lift





1. No lift 1991 v3500 crew with cummins
2. N/A
3. 285/75/16 (33/11.2/R16)
Rub on the drag link. its only happened when im moving real slow around the yard
« Last Edit: March 30, 2016, 07:42:16 PM by Irish_Alley »
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes

Offline Don5

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Ok Irish Here you go.

1. 6 inch lift. Rugged Trail brand- no longer in business. Bought it in 1985-1986 from Champion mail order. Installed on a 1979 GMC k-15 1/2 ton. 4 inch block and 2 inch add a leaf in the rear.

2. 17 5/8 inches measured from the top of the axle to the bottom of the frame right at the bump stop. Now I also want to add that my bed is off also.

3. I have a set of QR Buckshots which are advertised at 36 inches tall. They measure 35 1/2 inches tall mounted on Chevy rally wheels. They have 1/2 inch of tread.They are going to have to be replaced due to dry rot. In any event the tires never rubbed the body at any point. This is the second set that was put on the truck too.

4. My factory bumpers are exactly 31 inches off the ground also. This was measured to the bottom of the bumper.
It's been a LONG time since I have been called a newbie. Just sayin....

1979 GMC K15 355, SM 465, 205, 3.73 Dana 44 with a Spartan Locker, 12 bolt Eaton limited slip and 6 inch lift with 36 x 12.50 Super Swamper TSL's.

Offline Greybeard

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It's been a long while since I've owned the truck I talk about a lot. I can't give any measurements. I had a Trailmaster lift (still in business, no longer supply to the leaf spring market I don't think) 6" lift. 4" blocks, 2" add-a-leaf. No rubbing even in the mountains with 39-15/15 Mickey 'T's Bajas. 
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Offline Irish_Alley

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thank you guys. i know we have more than 2 people with lift kits. some one get out a tape and measure or say what tires fit
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes

Offline roundhouse

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I don't have access to my truck for a few days.  But I can tell you that 33x12.50 tires will fit fine with no rubbing at all on stock rally rims and NO lift

35s will fit with slight rub at full lock and no lift



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Offline Jason S

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1973 GMC K2500

1) Older Rancho 4" lift. No idea when it was installed, but think sometime in the mid-1990's

2) Front 11 1/2"; Rear 14 1/2"

3) Republic Trail Mark 235-85-R16 (30 1/4" tall), no rub
1973 GMC K2500, Super Custom, Camper Special, 350, TH350, NP203, 4.10's
1974 Chevrolet K10, Custom Deluxe, 350, SM465, NP203, 3.73's

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Offline carnation831

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1978 Chevy K10

1.  Superlift 2.5" lift bought this passed year

2. Not sure

3. Goodyear Wrangler 33x12.5x15


Offline Greybeard

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Irish, there is no point in me measuring the truck I use in the avatar picture or whatever it's called to the left. It has stock springs near as I can tell and they are sagging terribly. That truck has 33's (as stated on the sidewalls) on it, so they are likely about 31 or 32 at most. There is little to issue with putting big tires on a truck with some height as there is plenty of room over the tires in most cases, even with just six inches of lift, the interference happens in front and back at the lower fender openings on the front and mostly at full lock. Cutting of fenders will likely be the best solution as well as the easiest. Once the lift goes past six inches things start getting more complicated for sure and much more expensive. But I believe you already understand that. With a six inch lift the truck can be built with NO bump steer and acts really good at almost any speed (as long as the steering box remains firmly attached to the frame).

With my old truck and it's six inch lift I pulled a trailer with my Harley and my household goods in it and my three wheeler in bed from St. Louis to Vail Colorado in an ice storm across Kansas with no memorable problems except having to stop for gas every hundred miles. That is saying something for a lifted shortbox. 
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Offline Irish_Alley

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i know i fit 33s on my stock 91 v3500 with the cummins. still had a couple inches between the fenders and tires but never got a chance to really wheel on it
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes

Offline jumbowolfe

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1978 Chevy K10

1)  4" Rancho Lift - done a long time ago

2)  Don't know - can check later

3)  33 12.5 15 - no rubbing, plenty of clearance.

Things I've heard from others while lifting....

Frame will get weak and potentially crack around steering box, and also near shock mounts on rear.  I'm dealing with this now, crack on the frame towards the back that I have to box/weld to repair.



1978 Chevy 4x4 SWB K10 - Yeller 2 - Currently Owned
1978 Chevy 4x4 SWB K10 - Yeller - Sold in 1989, regretted it every day since.

Offline Irish_Alley

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Re: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits
« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2015, 05:50:23 PM »
updated the first post with what we have now
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes

Offline Captkaos

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Re: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits
« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2015, 11:59:53 PM »
are you going to put pics with this?

Offline Irish_Alley

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Re: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2015, 12:23:28 AM »
would be a nice touch
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes

Offline Flyinhillbilly

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Re: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits
« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2015, 05:46:21 PM »
14 front
17 1/2 rear
Ranching 6" spring bought used
Rough Country RCX Shocks
Super lift stainless brake hoses
I was born on a mountian, raised in a cave,
Overpowered cars is all I crave.

Offline Irish_Alley

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Re: Lift kit Q & A for those with lift kits and for those who want lift kits
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2015, 06:12:51 PM »
tire size?
If you canít tell yourself the truth, who can you tell it to?~Irish_Alley

When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth ~Sherlock Holmes