I put it to the guild... 85 Chevy Stepside project direction? (LONG READ - lots of pics)

I put it to the guild... 85 Chevy Stepside project direction? (LONG READ - lots of pics)

Timberwolf
Timberwolf

June 22nd, 2012, 2:27 pm #1

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
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Troy
Troy

June 22nd, 2012, 2:53 pm #2

Always wanted to build one of those up '80's style, big ol roll bars and grille gards, KC's and not too big a tire and lift!

that was art! dont make them like that any more!
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Nobody
Nobody

June 22nd, 2012, 3:39 pm #3

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
personally, i would have gone 4x4 and in the wilds of Michigan, i would have one 4x4 in ready access and to replace your jeep that you're trying to sell. so i would go with the other truck and swap in your good metal to the rolling chassis. then get it up in the air about nice 6" with 38s or bigger and let her eat. that's the problem with starting some project without a goal or an end point. you fix what needs to be fixed(the cancer and such) but when it comes to that fork in the road, which one to go down.

so get pics of the 87 and see where you are with that.
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Nighthawke
Nighthawke

June 22nd, 2012, 4:42 pm #4

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
But I've some nitpicks on where in Texas you managed to scoop that truck. Obviously it didn't come from South Texas or on the Gulf, or it would have had more rust than metal and the paint gone with the wind from the sandblasting the winds.

All in all, a great find and a great job.
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Timberwolf
Timberwolf

June 22nd, 2012, 5:20 pm #5

I also found some evidence of Florida in the interior... but that may have been a road trip. hard to say. There were ticket stubs from a Daytona race under the dash cover.
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Jeb Hoge
Jeb Hoge

June 23rd, 2012, 1:34 am #6

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
This is a cool truck, and if it were mine, I'd be making a street machine out of it. Like a Dodge Lil' Red but without the vertical stacks, maybe.
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Bruce Bergman
Bruce Bergman

June 23rd, 2012, 10:28 pm #7

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
Meaning if you take a glance at it, you've got a plain old Stock Truck - Nothing to interest a car thief, and a Movie Company might even want to lease it from you to film a Period Piece from the late 80's

But you look a little closer and then you can spot all the custom stuff - Nothing obviously Spackled on with a ton of Bondo, or mismatch items like cab marker lights off a Peterbilt, but you go for subtle and functional like upgrading all the side markers and taillights and license lamps to LED.

And little things like Frenching the base of the radio antenna down into the fender. Wouldn't shave the door handles (electronics fail) or other wild stuff like Chopping the roof or slamming the suspension, because that wrecks the intrinsic value of the truck as a truck - Drive places and haul stuff, reliably.
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Timberwolf
Timberwolf

June 23rd, 2012, 10:36 pm #8

This is a cool truck, and if it were mine, I'd be making a street machine out of it. Like a Dodge Lil' Red but without the vertical stacks, maybe.
Picked up the roller 4wd truck today. Driveline is great, frame is junk.

2wd decision has been made. Now to part out everything but the motor.

Anyone need a TBI intake and throttle body setup for a SBC?
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Timberwolf
Timberwolf

June 23rd, 2012, 10:43 pm #9

Looking for some ideas...

Couple months back I picked this critter up as an end result to multiple trades that essentially made it free to me.



It's a 1985, base model Chevrolet C10 Stepside. In this picture it has a straight 6 engine and someone at some point swapped out the 3 speed for a 4 speed (SM492) and hacked a hole in the floor for a shifter.

Overall, the truck was in great shape. Couple minor rust spots, mostly from the vent window weather strip being missing, coupled with the hood hinge seal being mouse nest fodder, allowing rain to come in and sit on the passenger side floor. There were no major holes, but the lip along the rocker that holds the main door seal, and an inch or so of the floor right there was pretty weak. Driver's kick panel had a hole, and then, of course, was the big hacked in mess of a shifter hole, and a section under the driver's feet where they peeled the floor back to get access to a body mount bolt, then just hammered it back in place without welding it proper.





Here's how they modded the floor for the 4 speed. At this point, all I had done is remove the floor mat and their 2x4 "custom" console:


The frame was still black (rather than rusty), as the truck was from Texas. Manual windows, locks, brakes and steering. New body mounts were in places, someone installed some 20 year old ford bucket seats, and some late 90s wheels rounded it out. Bed is overall in great shape too.

I pulled the seats and fixed/modded the floors for my newly purchased 2006 Trailblazer seats (not bad, $50 for the full set front and rear. Fronts have integrated seatbelts so I can trash the nearly 30 year old OEM stuff. The rears will be sold/traded back off for something else. The truck came with the original bench seat in the bed, so I cut it up and used the dheet metal for all my floor repairs and mods. I was pretty proud of that fact

This is at about 80% finished, not sure if I've taken a more recent picture. note the surface rust from the occasional rain still allowing water to infiltrate.


And the trans tunnel, body mount hole, and driver's kick panel


Floor mods for the new seats



Notice I also filled all the errant holes in the floor pan from the old seatbelts and other intrusions made over the years.

Scrapped all the unnecessary power gizmos from the trailblazer seats, designed a plate to facilitate my own mounts, and mocked things up:






I swapped out the manual booster for a power booster, and have a power steering box on the shelf. I sold the 4 speed to a guy who needed one for his hi-low, and paid me way too much to deliver it for him as well. Some guys who had a boating weekend planned but found a cracked block hampering their plans came and helped pull the straight 6, and even paid me a couple hundred for it before they drove away.

I decided to fix some inner fender cancer (right below the battery of course), and I had picked up a core support, radiator, grill, and headlight assemblies from a 1990 blazer to swap in (I like the look much better and it's essentially a bolt-in process) so I pulled the front clip completely.

So this is where we are today:


I have picked up a good used 700r4 trans. I've been trying to decide on a direction for the truck. My original plan was a 5.3 late model motor, as they can be had fairly cheap, make good power, and are great on gas (relatively speaking). Then I kinda thought a big block sounded like fun again, and now I've run across a deal on a complete 1987 rolling chassis... 4wd, with a 2002 vortec TBI crate motor and a documented 40k miles on it. And I can pick it up for about $400 worth of trade stuffs. It still has the engine with all accessories (even A/C) transmission, transfer case, basically EVERYTHING but the body. Guy's wife wants it gone because she's having to park her caddy in the driveway while this thing takes up space in the garage.

So now I'm torn... stick with 2wd, drop it about 6", use the motor from this chassis and sell everything else off? Or clean up the 4wd chassis and swap my sheet metal onto it?

I liked the idea of having another 4wd (since my jeep is on ebay and CL right now), but I was also looking forward to a lowered hot rod black truck burning the tires off at will

Let's hear it from the guilders!
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Bruce Bergman
Bruce Bergman

June 25th, 2012, 5:28 pm #10

When you know you're pushing the envelope, you just have to slow down and get there when you get there.

Leave a half-mile to get stopped, pay attention to whether that green light ahead is fresh or stale, etc.

You feel the trailer start to get wiggly and Slow Down, not Speed Up. Just tow dollied an Exploder tail-first with my C-3500 (wasn't worth the effort to drop the driveshaft) and you had to slow down whenever it changed from concrete to asphalt pavement.

Concrete that had been profile-ground was best, it has those nice sipe grooves to track against.
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