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2014 Prep
08-04-2013, 07:22 PM
Post: #1
2014 Prep
Prepping for Moab, Utah..

I normally post on s10 forum because it is my main build forum, but I thought it would be a good idea to post my Utah trip prep on this forum to help get the ball rolling. Of course, I will also be posting on my s10 page here and there, but the upstate page will be a lot more in depth with a lot more photos....


The plan behind UTAH is getting both rigs and camper on my flatbed trailer and hauling them out....of course, a long with this, I will also need a new transmission and transfercase (both are on their last legs).



The first thing on the to-do list is get rid of the 2500 cummins. With a trailer pushing 14000 lbs...I do not have faith in a single rear axle truck. A dually will have to be the way to go. The price tag on my diesel truck is double the amount for an mid 90's 454 crew cab dually with 4l80e... so I plan on getting a gas-jobber that can physically handle the weight and taking the rest of the cash and buying a new th400 and atlas II for the blazer.


I also plan on buying a small pop up camper and attaching it to the top of the gooseneck. Ive seen some pretty cool stuff out there.... I was thinking about building a pop out porch and awning with it! itll take a bit of fabrication which I am excited for and will be a unique camper.


There is also an extensive to-do list for the blazer, the trailer, and the truck for preparation, not soo much on the pricey side, just on the time side. But there is a lot to do before the trip next year.


So, last but not least....everything's pretty much dependent on getting rid of the dodge at this moment. As soon as I get the green flag on that....stuff will start happening quickly. Have a very interested buyer as of right now, hopefully itll be gone by next weekend!!!!
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08-04-2013, 11:23 PM
Post: #2
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
Awesome! I look forward to seeing the progress of this project. And thank you for sharing it with us. If this is anything like the XJ pop top build this should be very inspiring to say the least.

Good luck and I'll be keep an eye out for a popup camper in my area.

Alvarez Metal Works
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08-05-2013, 08:11 PM
Post: #3
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
this has got to be david....LOL
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08-10-2013, 12:58 PM
Post: #4
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
haha, yes its me....

So, things have changed a bit since then. Not sure if Ill be able to sell the dodge right away or not, PLUS, theres a good chance I will be leaving my current job to go work for BAE Systems on the HEV team. Of course, ill be starting from the bottom again making 3 dollars less then I do now..... But if everything goes well, it will lead to a career and much more mula down the road. Now, will this happen before next year? I don't know, which means my britches just got a little tighter and coming up with money will be a bit harder.

None the less......


as much fun as it would be to build up the trailer... I think it is more important to build up the blazer FIRST, the only problem is that it will take a good portion of the money saved up the past year to get it done. So, as for right now, I will be purchasing the Hughes Performance TH400 with low stall towing TC and manual shift valve body. This is probably going to push me up to around $1500 after its said and done.... Next will be the atlas II twin stick which will probably push me around $2600... As you can see, my money will probably be tight for the next 3 months! haha.....

But, to install this new drivetrain, I will be cutting out 90% of the floor in the blazer and starting from scratch. The dash, rear seat, or cage will not be touched..... but this is a must for rearregnemt of exhaust, coolant lines, and drivetrain... Then I will be building my own shifters for both the trans and tcase (I am TIRED of unreliable cables, I can build better) and rebuilding my entire floor to how I see fit. Of course, it will be A LOT stronger too.....and the cage will be much happier when completed.

So, theres things to look forward to for sure... Right now its time and money....and starting a new job might slow me down in the mental area.....but I should have a lot more physical energy unlike my current job.
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08-10-2013, 02:02 PM
Post: #5
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
Congratulation on the move forward in your career. Sometimes you have to take those steps "backward" to get yourself going in the right direction. It's like getting stuck on the trail. Back it up a little and get a run at it.

Hughes was just down the street from my old house in AZ. They sell some nice work. Do you know how well those transmissions do at high angles? As far as the Atlas 2 goes. Give https://ruggedrocksoffroad.com a call and see if Steve can get your a better price than you are finding. I know their website specializes in Nissan but I'm pretty sure he can get you one with the adapter you need for the TH400.

Alvarez Metal Works
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08-13-2013, 05:43 PM
Post: #6
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
Small update, Ordered the th400....should be here in a few weeks. Now I just have to buy the torque converter, dipstick, some an fittings, new lines, and some more tranny fluid.

But, that will deliver in just a few days.. so next is to order this Atlas....and the hardest part is trying to figure out the front and rear yokes.

Ive decided to go with a 5.0:1 ratio...All I ever use is first and second gear...and my second gear is now 20:1....where my third gear with the atlas would be 24:1.... so I still wont be loosing my wheel speed....Ill just be using all of my gears... which for an offroad rig is perfect! That, and down the road I wont be worried about uppin my tire size....


I am hoping to order that this week sometime so they can start building it...hopefully they'll both be shipped within the same month and I can start breaking the blazer down and giving it a whole new spin.

The plan is to have the blazer down no more than 3 weeks! Max a month. But I think that should be highly doable.....




Okay, on another note, been thinking more about the trailer...and the trip.... I have two options. Fit both rigs on my trailer, and install a pop up camper that fits over the gooseneck. I would be making a slide out deck as an "Observation deck". The reason for this is for events like this weekend....mud bogs, rock crawls, yada yada.... and a covered observation deck is the ticket!

Now, since pop ups seem to be costly....I have also been looking into slide in truck bed campers... This would go on the deck and over hang the gooseneck as it would the truck cab. These are nice cause you can camp all winter if need be..and that is almost a most for the style of wheeling I enjoy...BUT you lose one truck length on the trailer..... Also, as for an observation deck, I would also build one on top of the camper that collapses down for travel. I would have A LOT more room with this deck and it would be about 3 feet higher up than the pop up deck (which would only be as high as the gooseneck).


Anyway, Im going to try and pull off both while building up the blazer. If I find a good deal on a camper of either...im going to go for it. People are starting to slow their roll camping, and its almost prime time for buying!



thoughts are appreciated!


ps, here is the trailer im working with.....

[Image: P6140543.jpg]

heres a good example of a slide in...

[Image: 100_0339.jpg]

Heres a good example of a pop up on a gooseneck, with a small observation deck (mine would be bigger! lol)


[Image: 29285.jpg]

and when it is collapsed...


[Image: 315219d1184638953-gooseneck-popup-s-29286.jpg]
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08-13-2013, 06:33 PM
Post: #7
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
The slide in stile looks so much better but it sucks to loose the extra space on the trailer. However it would be nice to have that deck way up high like that for events. I'd be tempted to build both with a quick remove/install option for whatever suits your needs at the time. This way if you need to haul two rigs you can use the popup and if you only need one you can use the slide in.

Alvarez Metal Works
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For a 10% discount on your entire order use Coupon Code: Metal
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08-15-2013, 07:45 AM
Post: #8
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
Is it possible to swap in a dually axle? I'd rather have the diesel for towing, especially such long distances. Driving to Utah and back in a gas job would take quite a bit more $$ than in a diesel truck.

Is the Dodge an auto or manual? I never had much faith in Chrysler automatic transmissions ...
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08-16-2013, 05:38 PM
Post: #9
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
My truck is too nice... its an '01 2500 and it looks brand new... The entire underbody was repainted every year.. and all of the fenders and common rust areas were sanded down and professionally painted every two years... And this has gone on a long time...and I have kept the tradition of doing so when I purchased the truck!, it comes with a price...but its the only way to keep these f'n things from rusting out! So, for me to make this a dually would be like taking a new truck and tearing it apart, lol... Id probably gain a lot more by selling it for a bit of cash and finding something a little more beat up... a little more 'me' haha. But yeah, if it was rough around the edges and beat up a bit, I wouldn't give it a second thought to swapping axles....

and yes it is the auto....the dreaded 47RE. It already blew up 5 years ago...and had to be completely rebuilt...and with stuff that will NOT fail like the original manufactures crap that it was built with prior. Its just not the right truck for me....A manual, dually, H.O., crew cab.... my truck is the opposite of all this lol. Of course, to buy this, I would have to put down even more mula which I am not in the position of doing....

All in all, diesels are good...But big blocks can haul just as much weight as a factory set cummins. The down fall is fuel, almost doubling the fuel intake. But with all the money you save in fuel with diesel...you spend on buying the truck and then making very costly repairs and upgrades....I have already put a lot of $$$ in my truck....and nothing major has even failed... Its just a dodge! lol.... Of course, the only way to run a gasser dually is to NOT run them ever.... driving them only when needed to haul would be best.


But right now, I am still with my truck... I have people interested but I am so busy that its hard for me to get around making dates to meet up. I am not very good at selling vehicles... Sad especially when I haul with it non stop!
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08-17-2013, 08:44 AM
Post: #10
RE: Moab, Utah 2014 Prep
Get a gooseneck, throw my rig on the trailer with yours and call it a day. O;]

95' Pathfinder - Sashana --- R.I.P.
00' Xterra - Reshma --- 180,000 miles and still kicking!
99' LR Range Rover 4.0 - (yet to be named) --- 98,000

-Rory aka. ReshmaX00
-Queens NY & Albany NY

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