Truck Tech Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

Summit Racing
Wilwood Forged Narrow Superlite 4R Big Brake Rear
Summit Racing
Wilwood Forged Narrow Superlite 6R Big Brake Front
Matco Tools
Matco Tools are the Official Tool Supplier to Truck Tech
QA1
Coil Over Conversion
The Industrial Depot
Tools, Hardware, and Shop Supplies

Episode Transcript

(Narrator)>> It's judgement day for "Project RedTide", and where else but a rally cross track would LT and Austin run this all-wheel drive convert through its paces.

(Austin)>> We gonna do some slinging, some sliding, and some ultra-fast riding.

(Narrator)>> Plus "Lo 'n Slo" reveals its bones.

(LT)>> After months of searching we just picked up our newest project truck. This 1965 Chevrolet C-10 short box Fleetside straight out of Marshall, Texas.

The million dollar question is what direction we are going to take with the build of this truck because there are a lot of different options. We already know we're not going to be messing with exterior. Since it already looks perfect in our opinion there's no need to change anything. However the powertrain and suspension, those areas could certainly use some attention.

(Austin)>> Now we nicknamed this truck "Project Lo 'n Slo", and to help it live up to that there are a few ways we can go about it. A common method is to replace these steel coil springs with an air bag suspension. This will give you a nice adjustable ride height for when you really want to slam those rockers on the ground when parked. All you have to do is push a button when you're ready to ride.

(LT)>> Now the other thing we could do, we could install a coil over suspension system. Now this won't be adjustable but it will greatly improve the suspension geometry and the handling of this classic American pickup.

(Austin)>> Also we want to keep the rustic appearance on the outside. We don't want to touch it, but we do want the underneath to look nice and clean. So the first thing we need to do is get this frame ripped out. Get it prepped for a coating.

(LT)>> Pull it back a little.

(Austin)>> Coming back!

(LT)>> Think this cart will hold it?

(Austin)>> We're gonna find out. That'll work.

(LT)>> Oh yeah, we're golden.

(Austin)>> Alright bro, let's check this thing out.

(LT)>> I guess the big question is how does the frame look?

(Austin)>> Man not bad at first glance. I mean a little bit of pitting here and there. Nothing we didn't really expect from a 50 something odd year old truck.

(LT)>> Well speaking of 50 something years old, still wearing a chambered muffler complete with no hanger and exhaust leaks.

(Austin)>> I like it, I like it.

(LT)>> Alright so I guess what, the next step is get the cab undone?

(Austin)>> Yeah let's find these body bolts and yank it out.

Go ahead. [ drill spinning ]

(LT)>> Ah, there we go!

[ drill spinning ]

(Austin)>> It's just a simple matter of removing the battery, getting the cooling system drained, and the radiator removed. I'll disconnect the brake line... [ drill spinning ]

(Austin)>> ...the shift linkage at the column, and remove a few wires. So very nice. Then we'll get lift arms in place and get this crusty old cab out of here.

(LT)>> So if you're ever at home by yourself on the holidays and you see a couple of guys outside carrying these you're probably about to have a whole lot of fun.

(Austin)>> What are you trying to try out for the wet bandits?

(LT)>> So you can really learn a lot about the history of a pickup truck just by yanking off the body and taking a look at the frame. One thing I've learned is this truck was probably used really hard on a farm or a ranch. Now check out some of the localized damage in this area right here. Normally guys will come and put a tow hook right here. So this truck was probably stuck in the mud. Buddy came along with his tractor, hooked up a chain, and just gave it a real hard yank and caused some pretty good damage right here, but nothing we can't fix. Same thing over here. There's a couple of small stress cracks that have probably just developed from years and years of hard use and vibration.

(Austin)>> Yeah man also check out the size of this transmission.

(LT)>> That is tiny.

(Austin)>> Super small.

(LT)>> Alright let's get this thing out of here, get that cab off the lift.

(Austin)>> Let's have at it.

(LT)>> We've got a great looking classic project truck over there and right now it's a little bit useless since it won't be driving anywhere for quite a while. We've been teasing you guys some time now about which direction we're gonna take with this build, and right now we're gonna tell you the plan. We're gonna lower this truck with a QA One coil over conversion system that'll have parts for both the rear and the front. It comes with lower and upper control arms, and of course coil over shocks that'll be mounted on all four corners that'll bring this truck down four inches in the front and six inches in the rear, which in our opinion is the perfect height for a mid '60's Chevy C-10.

(Austin)>> Absolutely, and while you were gathering suspension components I was working on brakes and steering. Now as you can tell with the cab off on this truck there's still a lot of o-e-m components, and some of that are these old drum brakes. Now we're not gonna keep this power plant. We know we're gonna do something high performance. Even though we won't go too crazy we still want to stop. So these have got to go. We went over to Summit Racing and picked up this big brake kit. This will allow for better cooling and quicker stopping. In order to get that bolted on I had to get these spindles too.

(LT)>> Alright well the way I see we've got two different choices. We could get dirty. We could bolt on some of these parts on that frame, or what I think is a better option. We've got "Project RedTide" over here. It's got a full tank of gas and I've got the keys. Why don't we go for a drive?

(Austin)>> I like that plan.

(Narrator)>> Next "RedTide" goes rally crossing.

(Austin)>> When it comes to finding a place to take our project trucks when done we like to mix it up every now and then.

(LT)>> The past few seasons we've been to the road course, the drag strip, auto cross, and of course we logged some miles on the local roads.

(Austin)>> But since this truck is special with its all-wheel drive conversion we wanted to find a place we could test out its capability and traction.

(LT)>> So we came out here where there's lots of loose gravel, wide open spaces, and some areas where we can get this truck to slide around a little bit. We're gonna try our hands at rally cross.

From low buck beaters to full custom tube chassis, rally cross is a full on dirt racing series put on by the Sports Car Club of America.

(Austin)>> And to put "Project RedTide" through its paces we're at Holly Tree Off Road Park, about 35 miles outside of Huntsville, Alabama.

(LT)>> It's an 800 acre playground for dirt bikes, a-t-v's, rock crawlers, and of course monthly rally racing.

(Leon)>> A rally cross course is actually a timed course. And so there's a start, there's a finish. It is a curvy course with cones that are delineated by pointers that tell you which way to go. If you hit a cone it cost you two seconds of additional time. If you go around the wrong side of a cone it's a 10 second additional penalty. So for today because of that fact this is Truck Tech and we figure you're bring a truck we thought we'd open up the course a bit. So normally the course may have some gotchas where you come over a crest and suddenly there's a tight turn. Well in this case I've opened up the course to make it more open, more friendly, and easier to follow for newbies, people who haven't done this before to give you a chance.

(LT)>> So the first thing we're gonna do is a parade lap basically just to get a feel for the course and know what we're getting into. You know Austin maybe we need to change the name of the show from Truck Tech to Rally Tech.

(Austin)>> Yeah whatever we want really.

(LT)>> I'm feeling this.

(Leon)>> So we're going to start out nice and easy here and just pull, and you're gonna line yourself up, and now we're looking at the next cone. And so we're gonna drive around the outside of those two out here, and again keeping your eyes up. Looking at the lineup of the cones. You see the line we have to go through, and we're coming out here. Now you get a little view of the course a little faster. A little this way, a little this way, now we're gonna go left of these two. Notice they're both pointers this way, and then we go through the little dip, and then we're gonna come up here. Watch this dip here on your suspension so you don't bottom okay, and then here you might have to brake a little. Kick it in, come around this side. Again looking ahead around that corner, keeping your eyes ahead. See that? A little bit of slide there. On this one I want to get over by this cone in the grass. Stay tight, nice and easy okay. And through here you can see you can really rock through here. This will be easy. And on this one we cut you way up over here because if you get wide look what's waiting for you. There's a big ole mud hole. That will take you out.

(Austin)>> One of us will find it.

(Leon)>> You'll be cleaning that truck for quite a while. And then this one, and we're gonna just nice and easy around. That look like fun?

(LT)>> This is awesome.

(Leon)>> You haven't had the fun part yet. And then nice through here. Now here we've got a little bit of a surprise. Watch that cone right there when you're throttling, see, and then this little to the finish. There you go, how's that?

(LT)>> I love it.

(Leon)>> And you're just starting to feel the fun.

(Narrator)>> Next our Chevy goes a slipping and a sliding.

(LT)>> Alright we've got a couple of prepared rally cars that are gonna kinda show us the ropes, and show us what it looks like doing a proper lap, and I'm excited to see what they have.

(Austin)>> Absolutely, we did a parade lap to get the lay but we're gonna see what these guys can do turning it up a bit.

(LT)>> Alright, I'm excited.

One thing we learned right away. Anyone can try their hand at slinging a car or truck around a rally cross track, even if your vehicle is bone stock. The course is typically set in a big open field where you don't have to worry about hitting trees or going off a cliff.

(Austin)>> One car goes at a time and you get a small running start. [ engine revving ]

(Austin)>> Leon Drake is one of our hosts. He's a three time rally cross national champion in his 1990 Honda CRX.

(Leon)>> Oh this an adrenaline thrill like nothing else. I mean it's short term at a time but it's a lot longer than a drag race obviously.

It's super fun because of the sliding around. Yes I've been on two wheels, and I've also personally been to the nationals. I've won three national championships. Charles right here today has also won three national championships. So we are real addicts you could say. Types of vehicles, and we get a lot of different things, is the most popular meat and potatoes is going to be Subaru. If you have a Subaru and you're not doing this you need an intervention because this is great fun, and Subaru's are the base vehicle. We also have Evo's and other all wheel drivers. A Honda all-wheel drive wagons, they're pretty good. Miata's do great in the rear wheel drive classes. I've got people running station wagons. I've seen Corvettes at the nationals. Mercury Marauder, Porsches, almost anything. It's just that it can't be taller than it is wide. A vehicle has to be by the rules no taller than it is wide for safety concerns. So other than that pretty much anything goes, and we get Volvos and cars that people were going to toss away and they bring them out and just have a great time with them.

Rally cross does not allow jumps on the courses and we don't want to damage people's cars. So we groom the course out here at Holly Tree so that we don't damage the cars. If you break a person's car they probably won't be back. So these course are made to be reasonably smooth but very fast. You slide a lot. If you like to drift boy this is your game.

There's a lot of style points to be had out there. You can slide around. You get lots of style points but it isn't gonna make you fast. When you see the times it'll hurt you. Even a little CRX you're gonna be surprised.

(Saheed)>> It's the most exhilarating feeling you'll ever have. It has a euphoric feeling that you can't recreate. Once you leave the start line past the first cone you feel that your heart races. You grip the steering hard and you're just waiting for the response from the car.

(Nate)>> Just as soon as you take off from the start line you definitely get the adrenaline pumping. You come around the first corner probably going 20, 30 miles an hour and it's just a great rush. The course is extremely technical in some spots but there's definitely room for speed. So I'm interested to see how these guys work it.

(Austin)>> Bro so these dudes are making some pretty quick laps. Tell me what you think about that?

(LT)>> Well depending on the car it looks like their running somewhere a high 60 and a low 70 second lap, but these are some professional drivers unlike us and they have a very well prepared car. So I really don't know what to expect when it comes to old "RedTide".

(Austin)>> I'm feeling under 100, that's a success for us.

(LT)>> Alright well here's the deal. Two laps each and we'll add the times up.

(Austin)>> Let's feel her out first but I like it.

(LT)>> Alright man let's see what she'll do.

(Austin)>> Let's check it out.

Now remember them cones are pointing the way.

(LT)>> What side of the cone am I supposed to be on again?

(Austin)>> If it points left go left. I think if it points right go right.

(LT)>> Still pretty much every he told us has gone out the window.

(Austin)>> I forgot everything already. I'll tell you what, she's handling pretty good man.

(LT)>> Wasn't this supposed to an easy lap?

(Austin)>> Better hold on to something.

(LT)>> Yeah buddy.

(Austin)>> Good thing we put that center console right there.

(LT)>> Hey no cones yet either.

(Austin)>> It ain't over.

(LT)>> Oh no, we slid around it. Yeah!

Alright that was an easy lap. Hey look, 71! Alright well that was supposed to be an easy lap and we didn't really take it super easy, but it looks like we did a 71.9.

(Austin)>> I don't even think you hit a cone, which I don't know how you didn't.

(LT)>> We'll have to double check. I think we got one towards the end. I am hooked. We are gonna build another truck in the future. That's almost a promise.

(Austin)>> You're setting me up for failure.

(LT)>> Let's do it again.

(Austin)>> Ready amigo.

(LT)>> We're ready! There we go. We couldn't be happier with how "RedTide" handles the cones and curves. Okay so we totally missed that one.

(Austin)>> Missed that one.

(LT)>> This is one amazing all-wheel drive truck. We built it in the same spirit as the early '90's GMC Cyclone and Typhoon. Are you doing okay over there?

(Austin)>> I'm fine, don't worry about me buddy. Just hanging on here.

(LT)>> Whoa!

(Austin)>> We may have a little rubbing action, not really sure.

(LT)>> I heard something. Oh, that does not like, uh oh. Oh, oh.

(Austin)>> Yeah maybe stop and let's check this out.

(LT)>> We might have broke something.

(Austin)>> Yeah let's check it out. Some fixable I'm sure. We broke a front c/v shaft.

(LT)>> Oh really.

(Austin)>> Yep, it's completely ripped out.

(LT)>> Is it?

(Austin)>> We could cut the shaft, tie it up, and just leave it bolted through, the wheel bearing is still operating.

(LT)>> Yeah that may F*#@ up a diff though. Like guys will pull the front driveshaft to do like a dyno run and F*#@ up a transfer case.

(Austin)>> Because of no load?

(LT)>> Yeah, cause the viscous coupler needs a load. Alright so second lap in we were supposed to take it easy. We didn't take it super easy. We heard a loud clunk coming from the front end.

(Austin)>> These things happen.

(LT)>> These things happen. We pulled over half way through the lap, we took a look underneath the hood, and it turns out that one of the c/v axles that's on the passenger side of the truck actually kind of broke. So we're gonna look and see if maybe there's some way we can patch this thing together and keep having some fun but sometimes you break, sometimes you have fun.

(Austin)>> Just a little clunkity clank here and there.

(Narrator)>> Next the competition heats up.

(Austin)>> Just a little clunkity clank here and there.

(LT)>> With "RedTide" dead on the dirt with a broken c/v shaft we just thought about pulling it out and continuing on, but to do that we'd risk burning up the transfer case. Instead!

(Austin)>> We go hop in that Subaru where I'm gonna school LT all the way around sliding down.

I must say this is the first time this ole boy ever hopped in a Subaru. A little bity car here. I'm not used to that. I'm used to driving that old truck you know, but hey, I've got to admit it was fun. You shift that thing, and get around them corners, and pretty much keep that pedal to the floor.

(LT)>> Alright man, not bad for your first run out there on this track ever. You got a 73.2.

(Austin)>> Not terrible right?

(LT)>> No man, but you better go out there and hit it hard.

(Austin)>> Oh absolutely, I'm gonna smoke you.

Now this fine little blueberry handled a little wonky at first. You get oversteer, and then you correct steer, and then you back oversteer, next thing you know you're in the grass, and hitting cones, and going around the cones, but I've got to say I got the hang of it. My first round I want to say I beat LT's time. I'm just saying.

(LT)>> Alright man.

(Austin)>> Good luck man.

(LT)>> We're gonna do this.

(Leon)>> Three, two, one, go!

(LT)>> I will say with a little bit of beginner's luck and in a completely functioning car Austin was able to beat my lap time his second time around, but I think we can do a little bit better. The handling of this all-wheel drive Subaru is actually quite a bit different from our full size all-wheel drive truck. It tends to push a lot more through the corners, requiring just a little dab of brakes to get the front end to turn in and slide where you want it to go.

I don't know man. It felt a little wiggly.

(Austin)>> Not there yet buddy, 70.27.

(LT)>> 70.2, we'll work on it.

It's nice to drive the Subaru with a manual transmission because you'll just leave it in second gear and it'll stay there. Where the automatic transmission on our pickup is constantly hunting back and forth to find the right gear. This is actually not my first time in a Subaru but I always enjoy when I get behind the wheel of a four cylinder turbocharged Japanese car. Alright Austin, so I have to admit I did get a little bit more seat time than you today.

(Austin)>> A little bit.

(LT)>> But you did really good for only having two runs, but come on. Go ahead and tell them. What was my best time?

(Austin)>> 68.3.

(LT)>> Well you know what, it's all in good fun. We had a blast today. I do wish "Project RedTide" would have stood up just a little bit better but that's okay. It's a pretty minor fix, but we have to give a special thanks to the guys from Persod Parts in Athens, Alabama, for loaning us this '02 WRX that we beat on for the afternoon.

(Austin)>> Yeah they helped us out a bunch, and for more information on today's show visit Powernation TV dot com. And since you won maybe you fix it.

(LT)>> Hey I got some wrenches.
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