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Username Post: 50 body to S-10 Frame        (Topic#166836)
427_4speed 
Senior Member
Posts: 253
427_4speed
Reg: 01-31-03
08-09-07 06:28 AM - Post#1227465    

I have a 1950 1/2 ton. I am looking at replaceing the frame with an 1985 S-10 frame. Has anyone done this swap? Were can I find the wheel base info on each frame.
Thanks!
If it ain't broke keep fixing it till it is! That's the Goverment way!


 
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Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
08-09-07 08:13 AM - Post#1227518    
    In response to 427_4speed

I haven't done this, but I can tell you from conversing with some that have, that there are a few good things to keep in mind.

You want to stick with a frame from a 2WD truck with the front coil springs. The 4WD units use a completely different longitudinal torsion bar suspension and other things that make the build more complex. You want to get a frame from EITHER a truck with a standard cab and the long (7-1/2 Foot) bed or an extended cab truck with the short (6-1/2 Foot) box.

These frames are all made in a way that the front and rear halves telescope into one another. The two halves are then tack-welded together. To perform the swap of an old Chevy truck body, you grind the tack welds off and then slide the two halves to the desired length - and re-weld. Obviously, a new driveshaft must then be made to fit.

Also, look for an S-10 with the 4.3 litre V6. You can use this engine if you want, but any smallblock V8 is also then a bolt-in proposition.

Royer

 
Kim57 
Senior Member
Posts: 546

Age: 60
Loc: Corona,California
Reg: 05-03-06
08-09-07 08:50 AM - Post#1227533    
    In response to Royer

This site has info on swapping the S-10 frame into the AD trucks.
http://www.ad-engineering.com/
Kim

 
patgizz 
Senior Moderator Member
Posts: 8300
patgizz
Loc: Cleveland, OH
Reg: 01-30-00
08-09-07 09:14 AM - Post#1227549    
    In response to Kim57

it seems like a great way to get modern suspension/steering/brake s at a great price when starting from scratch.

i have picked up an S10 chassis for my 40. it is costing $125 and a trip to lansing michigan to get it. he sold it to me with the cab still on, with the pedals and column and brake booster i'd want to use.. if i can make it work i've thought about grafting the 40's cab over the S10's floorpan, cab mounts, and firewall to retain the geometry of the steering and pedals, as well as take care of the "what to do with my rusty floors and torched out firewall" problem.

when i add up the mustang II front and 4 link rear that i put in my belair, i'm close to $3,000 in suspension/steering/brake s to get a more modern/safe ride. for the S10 frame i'll be at 1/10 of that for the initial investment and have an endless cheap source of aftermarket suspension, brake, and steering goodness to bolt onto the S10 parts.

 
Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
08-09-07 10:51 AM - Post#1227597    
    In response to patgizz

Your proposed approach - using the existing S-10 floorpan, firewall/front of dash, and steering column/mounting is a unique. It sounds feasible to me, although I expect you'll be facing a number of engineering challanges along the way.

Royer

 
427_4speed 
Senior Member
Posts: 253
427_4speed
Reg: 01-31-03
08-14-07 02:07 PM - Post#1231189    
    In response to Royer

Thanks everybody for your comments. After looking at the supplied web site(http://www.ad-engineering.com/) and priceing there kit + a suspension rebuild, I'm not sure that a Mustang II
kit and boxing my current frame might be just as easy. With AD kit I need a 2 wheel drive long box frame but a 4 wheel drive rearend and Their adapter kit, then move the engine back 3 inches (more welding) + rebuild the worn suspension.. Might be less hassle to buy an new frame with all the goodies!
If it ain't broke keep fixing it till it is! That's the Goverment way!


 
bradoemba 
Member
Posts: 28

Reg: 10-11-04
08-19-07 08:13 PM - Post#1234955    
    In response to 427_4speed

Superior Glass Works - www.superiorglassworks.com - makes a reproduction chassis for the 47-54 pickups. Repro running board brackets and cab brackets as well.

I also recently read that the S10 chassis can 'telescope' to change the wheelbase. Apperenly there are rivets or welds you can grind down and move the front and rear sections to get the right wheelbase. Those guys at AD-Engineering probably know best.

 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-08-08 10:54 AM - Post#1337894    
    In response to Royer

What year S-10 are we talking about here or does it matter? I have a 96 with a 4.3. But its a regular cab short bed. Even if I went with the other combo though I'm still going to have to extend the frame. My project is a 48 3/4 ton panel. Its really long.
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-12-08 01:42 PM - Post#1341176    
    In response to txturbo

nevermind.....found the answer to that question. But I have another. Any reason why the S-10 chassis is chosen over the full size chassis?
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


 
monty56 
"10th Year" Gold Supporting Member
Posts: 1266
monty56
Age: 72
Loc: Chandler(it's a dry heat)...
Reg: 04-26-04
01-12-08 07:23 PM - Post#1341413    
    In response to txturbo

Because the early trucks were smaller (narrow) my '56 matches my 08 Colorado in size.
Monty
'56 3100 Short Stepside Someday
2001 Chevy Suburban 2500
2009 Saturn Vue w/20's

Member: Desert Classic Chevy's Inc.
Monty's 56 Truck
Avatar not a "real" Truck


 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-13-08 06:40 AM - Post#1341669    
    In response to monty56

Ok....thats true I suppose for a pickup. I'm working with a 1 ton panel truck though. It doesn't really seem that small. But come to think of it, the frame is pretty narrow on it
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


 
Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
01-14-08 12:57 PM - Post#1342612    
    In response to txturbo

There is another important reason that the S-10 frame is a popular item for cab swaps. The frame of the S-10 truck is constructed with front and rear halves. The Channel section side rails of the front and rear halves are telescoped together and then tack-welded to each other in a few places. It is very easy to grind off these welds and shift the location of the front and rear halves with respect to one another for those situations where a wheelbase has to be altered slightly. Of course a new driveshaft must also be fabricated, but this is not a major problem either.

Usually, the frame from either an S-10 extended-cab pickup or the S-10 standard cab pickup with the long (7-1/2 foot) box is most desired for these cab swaps as the overlap of the front and rear frame sections will bew maximized on the finished truck.

Royer

 
TooMany2count 
Old as Dirt Member
Posts: 6800
TooMany2count
Loc: Cahokia, IL
Reg: 12-12-01
01-14-08 02:12 PM - Post#1342654    
    In response to Royer

  • txturbo Said:
. Any reason why the S-10 chassis is chosen over the full size chassis?



suspension width is too wide & w/o the use of narrowed a-arm or narrow rims or narrowing the suspension cradle the tires will stick out.


  • txturbo Said:
Ok....thats true I suppose for a pickup. I'm working with a 1 ton panel truck though. It doesn't really seem that small. But come to think of it, the frame is pretty narrow on it




As far as the sheet metal goes they are all the same truck from 1/2 ton to 1 ton.....Joe
Donate Blood Products

Two possibilities exist:
Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not.
Both are equally terrifying.
Arthur C. Clarke


 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-14-08 03:01 PM - Post#1342691    
    In response to TooMany2count

I need a frame thats 137" wheel base. Actually its a little more when I center the rear wheels.So it really doesn't matter which S-10 frame I use, I'll have to extend even the longest S-10 frame beyond the overlap. I've seen the pictures of Large Marge and even swapped emails with you in the past Joe. The only sheetmetal I may need to replace is the rear fenders.But I may widen them anyway.If I do that then I'll be able to cut off the rusted out section.
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


 
Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
01-15-08 07:52 AM - Post#1343097    
    In response to txturbo

If you want to try and stretch an S-10 frame to a 137-inch wheelbase, I'd suggest you plan on some significant reinforcement.

In fact, for a vehicle of this type (137-inch wheelbase panel), I'd suggest that you might want to explore the possibility of staying with the original frame frome the firewall aft, and using it with a modern front clip.

Royer

 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-15-08 10:56 AM - Post#1343205    
    In response to Royer

Thats why I was wondering about the full size truck frame.They come a lot closer to the wheelbase I need, but if they are too wide I'll leave those alone.Anyone ever researched an Astro front subframe? Seems like those would be good candidates to graft onto a stock frame.The Astro is built a little heavier than an S-10 and they use the larger wheel bolt pattern. I would think they would have larger brakes also. New info....just found out the astro is 62.5" hub to hub. Might be a little too wide. Anyone know the hub to hub on a stock stovebolt front end?
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


Edited by txturbo on 01-15-08 11:12 AM. Reason for edit: No reason given.

 
TooMany2count 
Old as Dirt Member
Posts: 6800
TooMany2count
Loc: Cahokia, IL
Reg: 12-12-01
01-15-08 11:33 AM - Post#1343233    
    In response to Royer

Royer if you look at a full size truck frame & a S10 frame you will find this. The S10 frame is wider and the thickness of the frame is basicly the same(w/a mic you could barely see a difference). I believe the fullsize truck/suburbans may use one extra frame brace towards the rear of the truck but even that I'm not sure of.
On my own project I not only have a transmission x-member but also have used a x-member for my 2piece driveshaft which also added strenght to the frame. I truly doubt there will be any problem considering I have seen BBC mtr in S10 & they didn't twist the stock frames. I wouldn't see why you couldn't just add an extra x-member to strenghten the frame just like the do w/modern frames.
As for adding a late model suspension to a 1ton frame, there are very few choices. Late model truck suspension will stick out too far, after market suspension kit for this large truck are far & few plus costly. And the biggest problem about the stock frame is it's about 1/4inch thick & weights a ton. More weight means less MPG.

Somewhere on the web I seen a site where a guy narrowed a fullsize truck frame && suspension about 3 inches to make it work under an AD truck. Yep it was a lot of work but it worked.

There is no easy fix for these big trucks BUT if there was anybody I ask about getting an aftermarket kit from it would be THIS GUY.. No I haven't bought anything from him, but I have talked to him in the past & he told me he could make up a kit for the larger trucks at that time. My problem was $$$$$ so that's why I went the S10 frame way after readying everything I could find on using them...joe
Donate Blood Products

Two possibilities exist:
Either we are alone in the Universe or we are not.
Both are equally terrifying.
Arthur C. Clarke


 
OldSub 
Senior Member
Posts: 317

Loc: Near Seattle
Reg: 09-01-04
01-16-08 11:01 PM - Post#1344602    
    In response to TooMany2count

There is another alternative if you go with a newer full size frame.

I have an '89 extended cab long box with a 155 inch wheel base and a '91 extended cab short box with a 144 inch wheel base. Both those trucks would be too long. Your first challenge would be finding a donor the right length, or shortening or lengthening one to get the length right.

Once you've solved that problem drop your cab on the truck, and widen the front fenders and either the rear fenders or the bed to cover the wheels.

I'm not suggesting its a better answer then lengthening an S-10, but rather that there is another way to deal with the width issues.
Steve@OldSub.com
OldSub.com . MaxwellGarage.com . OldGasTowRigs.com


 
Royer 
Needs to Get Out More Member
Posts: 11411

Loc: Bloomfield Hills, Michiga...
Reg: 09-25-01
01-17-08 10:45 AM - Post#1344878    
    In response to OldSub

This is a very valid point. And on something as long as this panel truck (remember, 137-inch wheelbase) fitting the truck with widened fenders both front and rear wouldn't really look out of proportion either.

Royer

 
txturbo 
Valued Contributor
Posts: 3250
txturbo
Loc: Rosenberg,TX USA
Reg: 07-27-01
01-17-08 01:50 PM - Post#1345039    
    In response to OldSub

About 8 years ago I was investigating different trucks for a full size frame swap and couldn't find anything long enough.I looked at 4 door long bed trucks at the dealership and they were too short.I don't remember checking anything from the late 80's early 90's though. I don't remember the width in the rear being much of a problem, because it already has a rear end in it from a mid 80's fullsize pickup and I'm pretty sure I used the later model pickup springs and stock panel spring mounting points. I was already planning to widen the rear fenders to give me a little more tire room without sacrificing interior space.
1969 Camaro SS 396/T400
1966 Impala 283/PG/AC
1966 Impala SS 427/4 Speed
1948 Panel 1 Ton
1963 Cadillac
1940 Ford P/U
1954 Chevy 3100
1955 Chevy 3100 2nd series
1956 Cadillac Coupe de Ville PINK
1930 Model A hot rod


 
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bobschevytrucks.com
Visit Impala Bob's forum on ChevyTalk
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