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Customs 1963 Suburban

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by jjsound, May 15, 2012.

  1. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Just got 'er delivered today! Plans are to get it running reliably and sell the Colorado!

    It's my first V8 in years! Last one was my first vehicle, 1976 Chevy.

    I intend on this being the primary vehicle and it will be doing a fair amount of towing as well.

    Chev 350/350(I usually moan when I read that too but it serves a purpose here), RV cam, headers, fresh wiring, etc... Seems to be pretty damn nice, I'm excited.


     

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  2. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Also, if somebody with some basic photoshop skills would give me a couple color examples in place of the green that would be great!

    Here's my thoughts: 1, Charcoal(ish) grey. 2, the salmon color on my boat in this pic.

    Thanks!
     

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  3. OshkoshRob
    Joined: Jun 16, 2008
    Posts: 388

    OshkoshRob
    Member
    from Oshkosh

    I like the sea foam turquoise Miami vice color, cupcake!
     
  4. Torchie
    Joined: Apr 17, 2011
    Posts: 1,076

    Torchie
    Member

    Two tone it Salmon and white.
    Nice truck.
     

  5. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Salmon.Volkswagon.
     
  6. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Dig!
     
  7. hot-rod roadster
    Joined: Aug 30, 2005
    Posts: 3,029

    hot-rod roadster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Omaha Ne.

    Thats sweet, I love these trucks. Nice find. Gary
     
  8. mcnally351
    Joined: Apr 12, 2011
    Posts: 445

    mcnally351
    Member
    from boston

    love those burbs! nice score it will tow great too
     
  9. TheFish
    Joined: Sep 7, 2009
    Posts: 144

    TheFish
    Member

    Rob called you cupcake! Nice score buddy. For sure.
     
  10. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    He likes to keep it PG for the public.
     
  11. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Agreed! I've been finding so many nice vehicles right in my town, it's great!

    That and the fact that I can fit my upright bass in the back were the selling points.
     
  12. mike hohnstein
    Joined: Dec 4, 2011
    Posts: 262

    mike hohnstein
    BANNED
    from wisconsin

    It's probably got a 3.9 rear gear, spend the money on a good 700 trans, you won't be sorry.
     
  13. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    What is the benefit of a "700"? All I know is "3speed" and "Overdrive".
     
  14. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,876

    squirrel
    Member

    700R4 is a 4 speed automatic transmission, high gear is overdrive. The suburban probably has 3.73 gears. With a TH350 that means you'll probably be over 3000 rpm at 75 mph. The 700 will knock that down to a little over 2000, which is nice. Unless you're towing, and leave it in overdrive, and burn up the transmission....but that's another story.

    Years ago I had a 66 suburban, pretty much identical to yours. I swapped in a big block and TH400, and after a while I got tired of the 3.73 gears and put 3.07 gears in it. Didn't tow quite as well, but it sure was nicer on the highway drives.

    With a 350 engine that might be too much of a drop in gear ratio. Kinda depends on what you want.
     
  15. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,221

    F&J
    Member

    pic #2 looks like it still has the narrow stock rear housing because the aftermarket wider wheels are still way inside the wells.

    63 rears are not user friendly if you have the typical peeling on the axle shafts where the wheel bearings ride. They are a one year only shaft. 64 to 69 shaft is the right length, but won't fit. Aftermarket "repair bearings" for later C10s won't fit the 63.

    Yes, most are 373.

    C10 rears got wider in 1970 by about 1.5". The later rears fill the wheel wells better.



    I did a 700 for a guy with 373 with a 250 six, it was sweet in most every situation, unless you hit a long grinding hill on the highway and did not plan ahead for it by gaining speed. If you did plan ahead, it stayed in lockup and pulled fine. it was the nicest driving A/T truck I did back then. I hated to give it back to the owner. :D
     
  16. MOguy
    Joined: Nov 14, 2008
    Posts: 185

    MOguy
    Member

    Here's a couple quickies.
     

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  17. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Well thanks for the info. The top speed around here is 65/70 and I'm not one for speeding, gets pricey. Towing is a necessity so I'll have to take that in to consideration.

    Sounds like the 700 is the way to go, I'll get it rolling first and see how it feels.

    Thanks a bunch!
     
  18. Brad54
    Joined: Apr 15, 2004
    Posts: 6,015

    Brad54
    Member
    from Atl Ga

    My daily is a '61 Suburban.
    I've got a Dana 44 in mine, yours is the first year of the truck 12-bolt.
    Besides the axle shafts, it's different from the '64-'66 rears in the track bar mount (and length).
    You should be able to swap in a '64-'66 rear and re-do the track locator bar. It shouldn't be difficult.
    Does yours have the rear seats?
    If not, you can find a 3rd row, full-width rear seat and use it in the middle row... that gives you like 4 feet of cargo area behind it. I'm constantly amazed at how much cargo area I have in that truck.

    4x8 sheets of plywood fit between the fender wells (with the seat removed, of course)

    As others have said, go with an auto overdrive. I've got a 4spd OD manual in mine, with 3.42 gears in the back, and it gets the job done nicely.

    Make sure you upgrade to a dual reservoir master cylinder... power brakes make it nice, as does power steering. I don't have PS on mine yet... one of these days....

    Rear seats and rear sliding window latches are expensive.
    '63 is the best year, I think... wrap-around windshield for style, front suspension is the same up through the '70s so upgrades are common, and it's got a crossmember for the trans and mechanical clutch linkage, unlike the '60-'62.

    I didn't choose mine, it found me... but if I was hunting one, I'd look for a '63, and put a '60 grille and '61 hood on it.
    -Brad
     
  19. Swifster
    Joined: Dec 16, 2006
    Posts: 1,456

    Swifster
    Member

    Another trans available is the 4L80 which is the current HD unit with Overdrive in full size vans and larger pick ups. This is like having a Turbo 400. It IS an electronically controlled trans, but you can get stand alone controllers from GM.
     
  20. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 49,876

    squirrel
    Member

    You might be fine with the TH350 and stock gears. Just make sure the tires are kind of tall.
     
  21. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Currently there are some late model seats in it waiting to be tossed in the trash(Craigslist) but I'm working on a guy for some '64 Caddy seats. I need the enclosed cargo area to haul my big ol' bass!

    I'm going to run it as is for now and just see how it feels on the longer drives and stuff like that.

    I should put up an under-hood picture, it has dual res master, power steering, and I believe power brakes.

    I've also notice that I like the earlier grills myself. We'll see what happens. First order of business, DRIVE IT!

    Whats the difference between the TH400 and the 700R4?
     
  22. Swifster
    Joined: Dec 16, 2006
    Posts: 1,456

    Swifster
    Member

    The Turbo 400 was used for HD applications by GM in the 60's and 70's. The Turbo 350 was the medium duty transmission back then.

    A 700R4 was the OD replacement for the TH350. Since the 700R4 came out in the 80's, it was replaced with the 4L60, the 4L60E (electronic). The 4L80 is the big HD unit. If you are going to be towing boats, you might want to look at one of these.
     
  23. mr shiftys used cars
    Joined: May 2, 2012
    Posts: 53

    mr shiftys used cars
    Member
    from sedalia,mo

    Shoot man your paint on the sub looks great i would paint the boat the same as the sub. Just my 2 cents
     
  24. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Thanks!

    I just had the boat seats covered last August to the tune of $600. I may have jumped the gun on that one but I didn't foresee this vehicle coming along.
     
  25. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    New Pics!
     

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  26. crashgravis
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 211

    crashgravis
    Member

    I'd leave it as is . :cool:
     
  27. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Started to attack the front lighting/wiring last night. Slowly coming along.
     
  28. A car 3 spd with o/d in my '64 panel, it's nice on the freeways now. I would leave the paint and just get some stock chrome bumpers or paint the rear bumper white like the front. Mine I upgraded to the dual res master and that's it, been driving everyday to work (8 years) with manual 4 wheel drums and manual steering no problems at all.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2012
  29. jjsound
    Joined: May 27, 2008
    Posts: 391

    jjsound
    Member

    Any tips on staying motivated on a project that is completely F'd!? The wiring on this machine is a nightmare.
     
  30. Window Licker
    Joined: Apr 18, 2009
    Posts: 288

    Window Licker
    Member

    make a list of everything that needs done, and do one thing every night, its a good way to keep from getting overwhelmed and/or starting 5 things at once

    my dad has a 7000lb studebaker short bus with a 700r4 and we love it, we towed a small trailer to bonneville with it and averaged 14 mpg. we couldnt be more happy
     

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