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1956 Dodge Pickup: Need advice on front crossmember swap.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by applewoodassassin, Jun 24, 2012.

  1. 50dodge4x4
    Joined: Aug 7, 2004
    Posts: 3,535

    50dodge4x4
    Member

    Cause he wants independent suspension, disc brakes, a Chevy drive train, and its easier to find 22"s for a Chevy wheel bolt pattern. Then he wants to paint it flat black and call it a traditional truck so he can brag to his rat rod buddies.

    He won't be here long.
    Gene
     
  2. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Yes, i want ifs, chevy drivetrain, and disc brakes. I'm NOT painting it flat black, flat black is hideous. I don't have rat rod buddies, nor do I want them. I'm glad everyone on here knows me so well.
    I will be knocking down some of the flaky stuff with a d.a. Having my shop logo hand painted on the doors, and satin clearing the truck to preserve what is there.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2012
  3. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    The main reason is because I am going to be driving this truck a lot. I just want more modern suspension and steering under it. I'm not a fan of straight axles.
     
  4. ^^this is really too bad. If you must have IFS Fatman does make a MII kit for these trucks or look at a Dakota setup from ElPolacko, have read nothing but good things about his work.
     
  5. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    I'm not spending $2000 on a fatman kit.
     
  6. Jdeshler
    Joined: Jan 2, 2011
    Posts: 210

    Jdeshler
    BANNED

    dont get discouraged, just put up lots of pics.. i have respect for anyone doing the work themselves.. on the wall about the 22's but i have friends that call me a dumba$$ for thinking my 15's look good sprayed red.. thats a beatable mule either way.. good luck and you found the right place for help.. you definately have a VERY nice truck to start with..
     
  7. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    I don't think anyone is a dumba$$ for what they like. Everyone has their own style, opinions, likes, and dislikes. I will post lots of pics, and thanks. Thinking of calling it "broken hip" because its old and it'll be on the ground all the time.:D
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2012
  8. Jdeshler
    Joined: Jan 2, 2011
    Posts: 210

    Jdeshler
    BANNED

    lol.. sounds good to me.. just one request, there are guys around here with the chrome rims that are covered in brake dust... keep em clean!! haha:cool:
     
  9. Ever seen how much flex there is in a 1980s GM car frame without the body on? Hell, leave the floorpans on and cut everything else off.

    Then you have to find one that hasn't rotted out behind the rear wheels or in where the trailing arms mount.

    I sure wouldn't use one under a pickup, but to each their own.

    You might be able to slip a Jaguar XJ front suspension on the stock frame and get coils, discs, rack & pinion and a Chevy bolt pattern without it bending like it's made of plastic in the middle. And leaf spring rear end swaps are relatively simple too -
     
  10. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    We're going to slide 2x4 tube in the frame rails because they are open. Then box them in. I found a solid frame. I have my reasons. It will be a lot less work then tracking down an XJ member, changing rear ends, fabing motor/tranny mounts, etc...
     
  11. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Because I yanked it out of a cow pasture, where it would have sat until some junker came along and sent it to china to turn into a new refrigerator... I am putting it back on the road, the way I want to, like the truck deserves. As I posted in my intro, I am a Chevy guy who fell in love with this truck... The body, not the frame and drivetrain. It has a junk a$$ locked up slant six boat anchor in it. I don't know $hi+ about dodge drivetrains, nor do I want to. I know my way around a chevy. Is a dodge straight axle and steering great??? Doubt it. I WANT TO DRIVE THIS THING. I want to feel comfortable driving my children around in it. Does anybody else have any questions? If not I'd like to get back to work on my truck...
     
  12. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Got it cleaned out. Time to fix the floor.
    [​IMG]
    Also got the dash primed and painted.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  13. Pretty sure he used a regular cab short box, when I manage to see him,I'll ask to be certain...
    Good luck, I think a truck that you can drive the wheels off of is traditional enough for me..



     
  14. AkBillyBow
    Joined: Feb 11, 2012
    Posts: 23

    AkBillyBow
    Member
    from Alaska

    applewoodassassin<SCRIPT type=text/javascript> vbmenu_register("postmenu_7911135", true); </SCRIPT> , your truck looks good. My floor boards are in worse shape then yours. I am thinking of going with a Fatman Mustang 2 front end with mine, and possibly a Ford 9" rear end. I will be dropping a 440 with a 727 tranny in mine !! Going for big HP !!

    Good luck with your build!!

    AkBillyBow
     
  15. There's half a dozen XJ's in the you-pick yard here on any given week and the front suspension unbolts from the car. They don't come much easier than that. The only welding you have to do on the car you put it on is a couple of upper shock mounts.

    I suppose I shouldn't even get into how when these trucks were new people drove them thousands of miles every day with their kids in them and didn't worry about problems, either. But hey, it's your truck, you want to chop it up and put it on a car frame that needs a ton of work to even be used because you can't comprehend doing something else, be our guest. Just realize that sometimes the intelectually lazy way out ends up being a lot more labor and expense than if you'd just sat down and thought it out better in the first place.
     
  16. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Nice... Thanks. You too.
     
  17. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    I've thought it out. I don't want a jag front end. I'm not taking any "way out". I'm building MY truck the way I want. I thought it through. I've measured. I'm going to reinforce the frame rails and put it under my truck. No one on here is going to talk me out of it. No one on here is goin to stop me. I'm doing it, end of discussion... I may fail miserably, and if I do, ill be the first to admit I was wrong.
     
  18. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    I asked for help/guidance, i got negativity and smart a$$ comments, so I'm doing it my way.
     
  19. Why ask for help and guidance when you have already decided how your doing it, then get pissy when others offer their opinion?
     
  20. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Because I decided after I got treated like a piece of $#it. I appreciate opinions and advice, but don't treat me like a dumba$$ because I want my vehicle, that I paid for, a certain way, that a few of you don't approve of. I didnt join this community for approval. I am a grown a$$ man. I'm not pissy either. Just tired of people trying to make me do or not do something with out a legitimate reason why I shouldn't, besides the fact that its not to their taste or liking.
     
  21. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    How traditional is bolting an ugly a$$ jaguar crossmember under a dodge, then swapping rear ends to match? A full frame swap is going to look so much cleaner, and be simple to put air ride on. Its not going to sit crooked, track wrong, or be too narrow or wide. Why can't any of you comprehend that?
     
  22. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

  23. koolkemp
    Joined: May 7, 2004
    Posts: 6,007

    koolkemp
    Member

    Looking forward to following your progress !
     
  24. AZAV8
    Joined: May 3, 2005
    Posts: 997

    AZAV8
    Member
    from Tucson, AZ

    I like your attitude about your truck and the way to build it - YOUR WAY. You'll fit in here O.K.

    The Elpolacko guy mentioned a couple of posts back is a really good chassis guy named Steve Szymanski. He owns Industrial Chassis in Phoenix. He is one of the chassis gurus here on the HAMB. If you have a chassis problem, ask him and he'll give you a straight answer.

    I had him install one of his Dodge Dakota IFS cross members on my 48 Ford F1. Great work. I chose that IFS because it rides well, replacement parts are readily available and Steve is close by to do the install because my welding skills are not up to the needs of structural integrity. A straight axle and stock springs, even when tuned up to better than factory will ride just like an old farm truck. For your stated need of nice ride you should go IFS. Frame clips and late model frame swaps are a whole lot of work and your hard earned dollars and time are better spent on the Chevy drive train you know all about.

    Elpolacko is improving his Dakota kits now and would be more than happy to discuss it with you. Send him a PM (private message) through this board. His fabrication skills and welding are first rate. I trusted him to work on my F1 and I'd do it again.
     
  25. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Thanks for the info. I have been checking out his kit and his work. But... I bought a complete ss monte with a rusty body, but solid frame for $250, and I already have the doghouse sold for $350. I'm peeling the body off sometime next week. I have a lift at the shop, so it shouldn't take long at all.
     
  26. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member


    :cool:
     
  27. 4msfam
    Joined: Jun 25, 2011
    Posts: 69

    4msfam
    Member

    Got pics of the new frame? How's the wheelbase vs stock?
     
  28. applewoodassassin
    Joined: Jun 14, 2012
    Posts: 35

    applewoodassassin
    Member

    Wheelbase is spot on. Track width is very close as well. No frame pics yet.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2012
  29. RacerRick
    Joined: May 16, 2005
    Posts: 2,753

    RacerRick
    Member

    I had a 54 dodge and one old "street rodder" guy told me to use a G body chassis under it. I did some measuring and even though the track and wheelbase is real close, I would not use it. I found a couple of problems - like the perimeter frame is too wide and interferred with with both the internal steps in the cab, and the bottom of the box. It was actually wider than the box was. Also, the rear kickup was very high and would have made the box floor about 6" deep. There was also issues with the firewall and floor (most of it would have had to been cut away for the engine and trans tunnel). But I never got that far.

    I think you might have better luck with the S10 chassis if you want to use a GM chassis. The narrower track will really let the wheels tuck into the fenders, and air kits are cheap and easy. If you need it wider, run the 4x4 rear end and front wheel spacers

    I am looking very seriously at a 57' dodge and am on the fence on using an S10 chassis (has the original 108" wb but is kind of narrow) or a dakota chassis (wider track, but would have to shorten the frame or figure out something).
     
  30. Listen to this guy, he has experience doing frame swaps multiple times.
     

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