79 Chevy suspension?

63chevyll

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ill show you a pick of my rear shock set up. it does decent. unknown springs. but stock location
 

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Kyle D

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You guys are gonna make me dig my 78 out! My dad ordered it from a Chevy dealer in ID in 1977 and then he gave it to me for my high school graduation present. Been parked for years but seeing the step sides on here is giving me the itch! It’s a step side, 4 speed, 4wd with factory tach.
 

richcomstock

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I've got a little experience with vintage chevy front ends. Currently I'm "building" a square body blazer that was raced back in the 90's so it's very race era correct. Originally it had 3 x 2" body shocks per corner but the previous owner cut off the upper mounts so I'm going to be using a single 3" bypass per corner. The upper arms are reinforced 1 Ton and the lowers are 1/2 or 3/4 ton, not sure (reinforced as well). The upper runs a Henry's style ball joint and on the lowers when I got it there were stock ball joints so I had Mark Newhan (as per his recommendation) install 1" spherical bearings for more articulation. Also running Stock Car products hubs and spindles with corvette calipers. Springs are P30 motorhome from the late 70's or early 80's.

If you don't want to go this crazy for only 10-12" of travel I would suggest running the P30 spring with a Henry's upper ball joint for more angle. You can add a spacer to if you need a little more height and then run a stock lower 1 ton ball joint. If you can find spindles off a 79 Ambulance (I'm pretty sure that's the year but not 100%), these had a bigger snout / bearings but you could still run the 5 lug rotors. I may have some of these parts for sale in the near future if you're interested.

As for the rear my set up is spring under Nationals with a single 3" bypass King. Nothing super fancy.

If you live in SoCal you're welcome to come by and check it out.

Were the Stock Car Products hubs & spindles on the truck when you bought it? If not how did you decide on those spindles?

For the rear, are the spring hangers in the factory location? And finally, do the rear shocks go thru the floor?

I’m sure all the answers will cause more questions so stand by to stand by.
 

racer dad

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You guys are gonna make me dig my 78 out! My dad ordered it from a Chevy dealer in ID in 1977 and then he gave it to me for my high school graduation present. Been parked for years but seeing the step sides on here is giving me the itch! It’s a step side, 4 speed, 4wd with factory tach.
Yes,dig it out!!lol
 

PBR Overall

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Were the Stock Car Products hubs & spindles on the truck when you bought it? If not how did you decide on those spindles?

For the rear, are the spring hangers in the factory location? And finally, do the rear shocks go thru the floor?

I’m sure all the answers will cause more questions so stand by to stand by.


As for the Stock Car Products hubs and spindles they were not on the blazer when I bought it. The spindles, hubs, brakes and tie rods were stock. I was going to upgrade the brake calipers when I ran across this set up from a guy that helped me prep the Class 8 truck I owned and drove. That Class 8 truck (which was originally a Chevy factory backed effort built by Nelson & Nelson) ran Stock Car Products Spindles with dual corvette calipers per front corner so I was familiar and comfortable with this set up. For the blazer it's almost a perfect set up even though stock would have been fine most likely. Yes, I could probably use an even better caliper than the corvette but this is better than what I had without going too crazy. And while I was making these mods I made new heimed tie rods. Never ending!!!!

Rear - I believe the rear hangers are in the stock location but honestly I'm not sure. Below is a pic if that helps. I can also take some measurements if needed. And yes the shocks go way up into the floor in the rear. But I'm still able to run 4 race seats.
 

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crafty

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As for the Stock Car Products hubs and spindles they were not on the blazer when I bought it. The spindles, hubs, brakes and tie rods were stock. I was going to upgrade the brake calipers when I ran across this set up from a guy that helped me prep the Class 8 truck I owned and drove. That Class 8 truck (which was originally a Chevy factory backed effort built by Nelson & Nelson) ran Stock Car Products Spindles with dual corvette calipers per front corner so I was familiar and comfortable with this set up. For the blazer it's almost a perfect set up even though stock would have been fine most likely. Yes, I could probably use an even better caliper than the corvette but this is better than what I had without going too crazy. And while I was making these mods I made new heimed tie rods. Never ending!!!!

Rear - I believe the rear hangers are in the stock location but honestly I'm not sure. Below is a pic if that helps. I can also take some measurements if needed. And yes the shocks go way up into the floor in the rear. But I'm still able to run 4 race seats.
Are you running 12” or 14” bypasses?
 

PBR Overall

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12". The front's stick through the hood and I'm still not using all the droop available. The rear uses all the 12" shock mounted almost vertical. Not a lot of travel on either end! HAHA!!!
 

partybarge_pilot

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12". The front's stick through the hood and I'm still not using all the droop available.

Not extending them all the way keeps them from turning into taco's, the shafts aren't that big and the piston comes all the way down to the seal head. There is no spacer in there like current shocks have to keep some separation.
 

crafty

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Not extending them all the way keeps them from turning into taco's, the shafts aren't that big and the piston comes all the way down to the seal head. There is no spacer in there like current shocks have to keep some separation.
Makes sense. I have 12” in the rear and assuming 12” in front I’ll know for sure when I rebuild them
 

crafty

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I knew I had these articles somewhere and I finally found them. Sorry for the cell phone pictures. I’ll try to scan them later.
Dave Westhem’s pickup (according to the article) uses 1/2 ton upper arms with Henry’s ball joints. The ambulance spindles and 1 ton lower arms with one ton ball joints. They say that’s from a motorhome.
Larry Minors blazer says it’s custom upper and lower arms. To me it looks like a tubular upper arm and some sort of stock style lower. It doesn’t talk about the spindle.
Interesting fact on the blazer. The article says it’s a 4 link and it uses Air Ride inflatable bags. I wonder how that worked.
Are those 2.5 shocks front and rear on Westhems truck? I have single 3.0 triple bypass in front and dual 2.5 remote reservoir in rear. I’m thinking of switching to single 3.0 bypass in rear
 
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