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Old 05-24-2006, 12:20 AM   #1
BOHICA
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Default All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Hey guys, does anyone know much about installing AWD systems in older vehicles? I got to thinking about that tonight and figured it would be really fun to convert my truck and see how it performs. Only thing is, I don't know what kind of vehicle to canibalize to get it or how hard/reliable it would be to mate to an Olds 455. If anyone has any experience doing this, I'd really appreciate hearing what you have to say.
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Old 05-24-2006, 01:36 AM   #2
Big-Olaf
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

For a short time GM made a couple of all wheel drive turbo V6 trucks.... The Cyclone and the Typhoon.... If you can find either one of these at a wrecking yard, you are good to go.... I helped to make an all wheel drive turbo '63 nova a few years ago....
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Old 05-24-2006, 02:11 AM   #3
scarliner
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

As stated above and also the chevy & G.M.C Astro type vans were available with all wheel drive. Didnt make near as many of these as 2 wheel drives though.But they are old enough now, you should be able to find some in the salvage yards.
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Old 05-24-2006, 02:13 AM   #4
BOHICA
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Definitely not tearing up a Typhoon or Syclone. If I find one of those, I'll restore it. They actually put the same system (sans engine) in the S-10 Blazers and I've heard a similar one, if not the same, in the Silverado SS. Don't laugh, but I actually considered the Mitsubishi Eclipse drivetrain because they'll take quite a bit of power. Unfortunately, they're front wheel biased(although that might not be bad on a vehicle that has all its weight forward of the bed). Right now I'm just looking for a cheap, reliable way to do this, not to mention something easy to find in a salvage yard. Will start looking for Bravadas and Astros, too. Thanks.
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Old 05-24-2006, 02:34 AM   #5
Big-Olaf
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

The Astro Vans used basically the same setup as the Cyclone/Typhoon... Basically just an S10 pickup running gear with a slightly different front diff.. I know that the Cyclone had independant front suspension, and I think the van's have a solid axle.... Both are prety hard to find.... You could also look at some of the newer SUV's... The IFS four wheel drive S10's have most of the parts you would need, but they have a different transfer case than the Cyclone.
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Old 05-24-2006, 04:14 AM   #6
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

i think the next big thing is going to be a road race look on older cars and trucks.
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Old 05-24-2006, 06:19 AM   #7
J Man
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Olds Bravada
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Old 05-24-2006, 06:21 AM   #8
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

No, the Astro/Safari AWD vans also used IFS. Their parts are similar to the S10 system, but altered to fit the Astro chassis (offset to passenger side rather than straight down the middle).
dan


Quote:
Originally Posted by Big-Olaf
The Astro Vans used basically the same setup as the Cyclone/Typhoon... Basically just an S10 pickup running gear with a slightly different front diff.. I know that the Cyclone had independant front suspension, and I think the van's have a solid axle.... Both are prety hard to find.... You could also look at some of the newer SUV's... The IFS four wheel drive S10's have most of the parts you would need, but they have a different transfer case than the Cyclone.
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Old 05-24-2006, 08:03 AM   #9
the-rodster
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Remember the Quadraduece?

http://www.enjoythedrive.com/content/?id=8567
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Old 05-24-2006, 09:01 AM   #10
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Quote:
Originally Posted by bulletproof1
i think the next big thing is going to be a road race look on older cars and trucks.
...granted, it's a bit more high-tech than I'm sure everyone here can appreciate... but I've attached a pretty radical take on that idea that I knocked out about a year ago....
And hell yeah, the Quadradeuce was a monster... I still have images rolling through my head of an all-wheel-drive shoebox that looks mid-50's period perfect on the outside...
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	camrr.jpg
Views:	92
Size:	17.6 KB
ID:	190732  
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Old 05-24-2006, 09:12 AM   #11
ray
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

an on and off project i'm working on is basically an AWD 50 chevy truck. it keeps getting pushed to the back burner when the weather turns nice, but maybe it'll be ready this winter. mine isn't a true AWD though, i used a 4wd chevy s-10 blazer frame and drivetrain. mine was kind of an offball from the factory, it was originally a 4.3 vortec backed by a NV3500 tranny instead of a T-5, and a push button transfer case. the NV3500 is the tranny used in full sized chevy trucks, a little stronger than the NWC t5, should live a little longer behind the 350 that i installed. and as for the push button transfer case, i went that route to not have another shift lever, and to keep things stealthy, i'm building this truck to be a winter beater, and a sleeper(sorta) i'll drive it most of the time in 2wd, but if i'm next to a ricer at a stoplight, all i have to do is push a button to engage the 4wd and have no traction problems for a little action. should be fun, it's gonna retain it's field fresh appearance so it should be a hoot to dust blinged out rice burners with a clapped out farm truck...well slightly customized farm truck, it's chopped 4" and is real low, only a couple of inches of ground clearance, still stock suspension up front, with the adjuster bolts for the torsion bars removed, and airbags in back to make it a taildragger yet maintain cargo capacity.
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Old 05-24-2006, 10:37 AM   #12
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

awd 56 chevy pickup? sure....



It's even traditional

(and it's not even really a 56)
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Old 05-24-2006, 12:07 PM   #13
BOHICA
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

If I go with a Bravada/Blazer, should I try and just use that vehicle's frame or keep mine? I'd rather keep mine, but I don't know if that would be of much advantage. Any ballpark guesses of how much this setup would cost? Being a student, I can't really afford to spend more than $2-3k on the truck's suspension.
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Old 05-24-2006, 05:28 PM   #14
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

If you find the right junkyard with a bravada hit in the back you should be able to get the whole chassis and cut it where you need to. You will have a better chance of finding AWD with the Bravada. You would want a S10 style one and not one of the newest styles. Also a lot of them had disc brake rear ends.
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Old 05-24-2006, 10:58 PM   #15
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Just mount your cab on a Chevy 4x4 chassis. Really will be the cheapest way to go. If you insist on using your 455, get and adapter to the chevy trans in the 4x4 chassis. Since your truck is a 2wd, the front frame is different and the cross members will probably all be in the wrong place. Save your frame for when you get tired of the 4x4 and wished you never did it, then you can just swap you cab and stuff back on its original frame.
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Old 05-24-2006, 11:03 PM   #16
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

easiest way to make a 55-59 chevy pickup into a 4x4 is to add a 60s front 4x4 axle, divorced transfer case, and rear lift blocks. Takes a little work on the drag link to mate the stock pittman arm to the 4x4 steering arm, and you're done.
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:15 AM   #17
BOHICA
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Yeah, bravada's probably going to be the easiest for me to find. There's a lot of salvage yards around here, so hopefully they'll be fairly common. Definitely want that IFS.

Just curious, but why do you guys think I want to turn my truck into a 4x4? I'm looking for a transfer case with a viscous coupling, not a geared one.
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:18 AM   #18
squirrel
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

well...this IS a traditional hot rod forum, and there weren't no such things as viscous couplings way back when.
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:45 AM   #19
BOHICA
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

Gotcha. I actually was thinking about making it 4WD, but I want to be able to keep it on all the time and use it to help me go around curves. Just want to do something different.
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Old 05-25-2006, 12:49 AM   #20
Fresh469
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Default Re: All Wheel Drive '56 Chevy Truck

i have heard that the bravada drivetrain is basically the same as a typhoon/syclone except that its not turbocharged....

doesn't the q-duece use a typhoon/syclone front diff?

i say drop your body onto a bravada chassis with the chassis lengthened/shortened as needed, put a shift kit in the 700r4 along with heavy duty bands and whatnot, get a BOP-Chevy bellhousing adaptor...

i wonder if they make an ARB locker for the front end of a bravada? if so, they would be awesome.....unlock it for normal driveing, then push a button and lock it into TRUE AWD for racing
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