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Old 08-14-2021, 10:43 PM #31
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Great progress so far! Looking forward to seeing the end result.
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Old 08-14-2021, 10:44 PM #32
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Whoa amazing work!


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Old 08-15-2021, 07:42 AM #33
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Here's a few photos from the past few weeks.

Hopefully within this week I will be able to post more pictures of the front four link and the completely welded rear four link.

The goal is to have it on the ground under its own weight by the end of this week.

It's awesome that both the front and rear links are all the same size so I'll be carrying one spare with me along with a one spare tie rod for the front steering.

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Old 08-17-2021, 07:13 PM #34
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A few more photos from beginning of this week.

Front links will be done at laser cutter on Thursday so links should all be welded up by Friday morning for front 4 link.

Today frame stiffeners cut and tacked up. They will we welded along with all rear links tomorrow.

Below is the nearly finished front axle steering rack mount. The front is removable for front diff maintenance.


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Last edited by 4rNCMTNs; 08-18-2021 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 08-17-2021, 10:05 PM #35
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Missed one photo

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Old 08-18-2021, 12:52 AM #36
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Great looking build so far! Cant wait to see some trail action with it. Makes my 80 series on 37's look little lol.
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Old 08-18-2021, 09:47 AM #37
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Thanks for keeping the updates going, man. I've been following closely.

You don't have to answer this, but what is your projected budget for the swap? Knowing how these things go and how quick changes and unexpected expenses run up, I'd be really interested in the ballpark. Also, how much of your own labor are you putting in vs. a shop having to do it all?
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Old 08-18-2021, 11:14 AM #38
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Great looking build so far! Cant wait to see some trail action with it. Makes my 80 series on 37's look little lol.
Me neither. Once done with phase 2 which is this part of the build I will start putting more videos up on my youtube channel which is very sparse at the moment. I hope to get an update video up this saturday.

I'm sure your 80 with 37's is very capable.
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Old 08-18-2021, 11:37 AM #39
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Thanks for keeping the updates going, man. I've been following closely.

You don't have to answer this, but what is your projected budget for the swap? Knowing how these things go and how quick changes and unexpected expenses run up, I'd be really interested in the ballpark. Also, how much of your own labor are you putting in vs. a shop having to do it all?
I went into the project with a budget and we are staying relatively close to it. I planned for some of the "unexpected" which always happens regardless how much pre-planning happens. I have not added up everything yet to see where I am on the parts, as we still have a few more small things to purchase. As I wrote in the beginning of this, a large part of the expense were the brand new 14 bolt axles front and rear. I could have gone with less expensive options but the labor / time would have gone up to clean them up, change gearing, add lockers, etc. This is not a project for the faint of heart, but it will give my family years and years of fun and memories.

One could certainly go with radius arms or a more simple suspension, smaller tires, smaller axles like D60's at a lower price. We have refined the rear suspension three times before the final welding which is happening today. We played with the suspension calculator a lot for the both rear and front suspension to find the optimal suspension choice while keeping all 8 links the same length, making keeping a spare very easy.

The items which have changed from the beginning are:

1. Originally were going to go with a reverse 4 link like T40R in the rear and not remove stock gas tank. Of course this is gone and we have now done a 4 link in the rear and replacing the gas tank with something different.
2. Started with 3 link in front with semi-hydro steering and now going full hydro and 4 link in the front.
3. 40" DOT legal tires now 43" stickies due to crazy lead time issues. This was a big unexpected change in the entire build.
4. May still change stock radiator for something larger, not sure yet.
5. Went with 16" shocks originally and thought about going to 14" but lead time was crazy so we are staying with 16" and should not have to go through the hood.

We only have small items left like brake lines, etc to purchase so we are close to having all parts on site. Only missing some minor pieces like RCV big bell front axle shafts where were ordered the end of May, steering pump, and pressure relief valve from Howe. We may have a short term work around if we do not get the new pump, but without front axle shafts it may prove to not matter

This is all I can remember now.

As for who is doing the work, I have not done much and it's all BudBuilt in Hudson, NC. I performed the entire battery relocation short of the physical building and bending of the box. I rerouted all wires and cleaned up from what I had done previously. Past that since I travel a lot, and I only see the build in person on Saturday's, I help with just simple general labor things or watch the amazing work being done.

The primary builders are:

Bud Rosenberger
#wheelin_with_willy
Chip Rosenberger
@azuber45 - don't know his last name but very strong on the suspension design and other items. He works at a shop in Charlotte which does a lot of LS swaps.

Last edited by 4rNCMTNs; 08-24-2021 at 09:03 AM. Reason: clean up text
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Old 08-18-2021, 02:04 PM #40
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that's freaking stout..you certainly didn't spare any expense.
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Old 08-19-2021, 07:15 PM #41
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Today #wheelin_ with_willy got all the rear links and frame supports welded on and started on the front. Tomorrow morning the front links should be installed. And we are hoping to have the truck on the ground under its own weight on Saturday as well as finish as much of the steering as we can.

I had an exchange with RCV this morning, and there is a glimmer of hope that we will get the shafts in time for ATR. At the moment they are out getting black oxide.



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Old 08-20-2021, 11:21 AM #42
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Going to be a great Friday and Saturday. The balance of our steering parts arrive today which is 2 days earlier than expected.

This is the steering pump and check valve for the hydraulic steering.

The front four link is just about done. Tomorrow will do my best to get a video of the 4-link in the front and back and post it.

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Old 08-21-2021, 04:50 PM #43
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The 4 links suspension in front and back is now complete. Some additional welding needs to be completed but it has been put in and tested. The shocks will be installed by the middle of next week.

At this point if I remember correctly we have around 4- 5 inches of up travel in the front and 6-7 in the back. The down travel in the front should be around 10 inches and the back 12 to 14. Once I have all the final numbers on this I will certainly get them corrected.

We have a lot to finish but we are approaching the end of this final first stage of the build.

Early next week the new steering pump will be installed and then the rest of the components for the full hydraulic steering will be mounted and lines run. Also need to finish up rerunning new brake lines as well as the air lines for the lockers.

Some additional gusseting needs to be completed and there is roughly two full days of welding for that to be complete.

Obviously the photo below is not at ride height we were just looking at the flex.

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Old 08-21-2021, 09:31 PM #44
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What are you doing for transfer case?
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Old 08-22-2021, 06:16 AM #45
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What are you doing for transfer case?
I'm going with an Atlas 4 speed with 10.34:1 bottom ratio. When I ordered it in early June, it had an 18 week lead time. Therefore it should arrive in middle of October. Really looking forward to receiving it.

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