'06 GMC K2500 Buildup

1stDeuce

Explorer
New addition to what's become known at work as the "High-capacity Assault Bumper"... Heading to Moab this weekend and needed a way to get my motorcycle there with the camper in the back. Putting it on a 2' extension hitch out the back didn't seem like a great idea, so I bolted a 2" hitch under the ARB. Had to turn the motorcycle carrier upside down to get the bike a little lower, but it should work well!! (I added a strap to each side to keep it from swaying around.)
Moab.jpg
 

1stDeuce

Explorer
Light Racing skidplate install

Well, I'm a little behind, but I installed the same skid as Locrawlin a few months ago, or the front half of it anyway. This skid system was available through Light Racing, though they never did any advertising, and the suggested retail was obscene. There are a LOT of welded steel braces and brackets involved, so that you can jack pretty much the entire truck up anywhere under the skid. Probably a little stronger than most of us need... Here's the few pics I took. (I though I took one of the brace before the alum, but I guess not...)
Before picture with the factory shields removed and a socket stuck to a bolt evidently...
IMG_2187.JPG

After shots...
IMG_2189.JPGIMG_2201.JPG

I only installed the front half for now. I don't really "wheel" this truck, so I think that'll be enough coverage for places it'll go, and I can still change the oil and filter for the engine and trans easily this way. I still want to build a new trans mount crossmember that doesn't hang down 2" anyway, so perhaps after I get that done I'll put the rear half on.
C
 

locrwln

Expedition Leader
The truck is looking great. I am jealous of the lift, that would have made the install soooo much easier. It sucked doing it in a normal garage on the ground.

Jack
 

chilliwak

Expedition Leader
I really like the look of your new :Wow1:skid plates Duece. Must be awesome to have the extra protection....:)
 

1stDeuce

Explorer
Finally got some new tires to replace the Michelin's that I've been running. They were getting low on tread, and the sidewalls were pretty weatherchecked. (They were 8 years old)

Thanks to the "OJ Garage Sale" in the classifieds, I scored four of the new style ******** Cepek Fun Country a while ago. I picked them up at OE14 and just got them put on the truck. They look like really good tires! They're of course made by my favorite tire company, Cooper, right in Findlay Ohio according to the factory code. They're on Cooper's 3-ply carcass, which is also used on the STMaxx and the STT. I figure I've had great luck with the STT's on my Jeep, so these should be great for the truck!! I actually like the tread pattern a little more than the STMaxx for what I do with this truck. I hoping for fairly good performance and mileage out of them! These are 265/70R17, but if Cepek made this tire in 255/85R16 I'd probably look for a set to fit my Jeep!!

The only think wrong with them that I could see is that one if the tires is peeled away on the outer edge, probably from some sort of cornering test at OJ. One of them also has some very light evidence of lockup during a braking test, but that should wear in fairly quickly. For the price, I'm not disappointed at all!! Thanks Overland Journal!!





This is the one that is worn on the outside. I asked the tire shop to mount it with the scuffed side inboard, but I wasn't there when they did the work, and it isn't how I wanted it, but I don't really care that much. I'll probably move this one to the rear soon anyway.


I'm heading to Silverton, CO for Memorial day weekend, so hopefully I'll get to at least comment on noise and dry traction.
 
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1stDeuce

Explorer
Quick followup post about the Cepek tires...
Drove about 350 miles this weekend for some camping down by Mt Taylor (NM). Still like these tires!!! They have a very mild hum on the highway. Real tires make noise, and by my standards, these are VERY quiet. Fiancee couldn't tell a difference between these and my old Michelins, which made no noise at all.

No quirky handling with the truck loaded. Tires at 74psi rear, 64 front. Drove 5 miles up a wet gravel road with no issues. Got off onto some wet/muddy dirt and they pulled right through, didn't spin, and didn't need 4wd. I could feel them squish around for traction just a little, but never spun a tire, even pulling back up onto the road. I'd have been winching with the Michelins...

Drove back to town (45mph speed limit) and found quite a few stones lodged in the tread, but once I got up to 60mph on the highway, most of them ejected. Think this is pretty common with tires that have a deeper tread and medium voiding... Just about the right separation for stones to get jammed in there... The BFG's I ran did the same, but with slightly smaller stones...

Some pics from the trip...








They got me where I wanted to go with no problems. These tires are staying on the truck!
 
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1stDeuce

Explorer
Milestone report

Well, we just returned from a trip to Michigan, where we got married!! :)

Had a little problem along the way, but we got through it!! :)

Heading out of Colorado, about 3PM, Steph reported that the battery light was on and the cluster said "Battery not charging". Crap... Pulled over and felt the alternator. Cold. Gave it a few raps with a makeshift hammer, hoping to get the brushes to make some contact... No luck. Got back in the truck and kept going. Called ahead to a few closer towns in Nebraska and found that nobody close had an alternator on the shelf. Several places could have one at 8AM the next morning out of Denver, but we JUST left Denver, and wanted to put some distance on, not stop and wait!! A call to the Carquest in Grand Island finally found one on the shelf, and they were just closing the doors so it would still be there in the morning. As a bonus we'd get several hundred miles farther if we made it. :) I plugged in a voltage monitor, and we shut off the lights, heater, and radio and turned the dash lights all the way down. At a fuel stop just before dark the batteries were down to about 12.3v resting, so I connected the camper battery to the truck. The last hour was lights on, and no problem getting to Grand Island. We overnighted at a WalMart just down the road from the Carquest, where i bought a $30 charger and plugged in for the night so as not to kill the new alternator. The next morning, after installing the new alt, voltage was good again and we were on our way!! Feel pretty good about the original alternator making it almost 200k miles, and about 6800 hours!! :)

Still liking the DC's. They make a little noise on the highway, but real tires make noise. :)

We averaged about 15mpg on the way to MI, with the camper and towing my brother's Scrambler, and on the return trip with the camper but w/o the Scrambler, about 16mpg. We ran 65mph both ways.

Pulled over to take this picture about 4 miles from home last night:
IMG_20140921_204116_011.jpg

Chris
 

Wilbah

Adventurer
Congrats on getting married! Sounds like a good trip and solved the alternator prob. Good for ya! I like this thread. Looking forward to more pics (of course! ha!)
 

1stDeuce

Explorer
Well, a quick update with some maintenance and one of the best mods I've done to the truck...
First the maintenance. I have been moving a set of front calipers and rotors for 5 years now, and finally decided to put it all on. With 210k miles, the stock front rotors and pads still had plenty of life left in them, but I was tired of the rattle that comes with mileage on these trucks as the pads and clips wear, and figured I could use the shelf space back. Loaded OEM calipers went right on, but it turns out I had one front rotor and one rear rotor instead of two fronts. No big deal, got a new one from the parts store and it's all much better now, with no rattle!

And for the best mod EVER... I still have the t-case shifter knob from my first truck, which my friends named "Barfy".

I bought the truck when I was still in HS. A '78 Chevy with a 250 straight six, a SM465 trans and a 205 t-case. And 87,000 miles and just about ZERO maintenance. The owner even bragged that he changed the oil every 10k miles whether it needed it or not...


I tore it down to the frame, and then fixed it up with southern sheet metal, a water pump, and a set of shocks, and it took me to college!




For four years, it took me exploring on the weekends, paid the bills plowing snow all winter, and did commuter duty in the summer, trekking all over MI and WI. It did all this with hardly any down time, and never once made me walk. (OK, I may have hit a tree while running sweep for a rally, but even that didn't keep it down for long!)








Bought it new tires and wheels, and a nice new grill after I graduated and took it to Silver lake, and more four wheeling in the UP of MI.


But eventually we started going to Canada to explore, and the trials were too tight for a full size, and I got tired of 10 hour drives in an old noisy truck, squeezing down trails meant for a jeep, and replacing windshields... It eventually became my sister's plow truck, where it served her for 4 or 5 years. Then it went to a college friend for a winter after my sister got rid of the house with a mile long driveway.


My friend brought it out to Colorado for me, and we took it on one last trip, to Moab no less, where it showed that it was still capable of doing pretty much anything we were up for!!




But I had no use for a rotten truck anymore, so I parted it out when we returned.




Now all I have of this truck is the fuel injection harness, the grill, and the t-case shifter knob. :(

So here it is, the best mod ever. (for me!)
I had to thread the shift shaft, but that was fairly easy. Looks like it belongs here, and brings a smile to my face every time I look down. :)
Before:


After:


Much better!! :)
 
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Bojak

Adventurer
That is an awesome mod. Hate to see a square body go but it seems to have been used as intended.
 
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