Here is a pic of the wheels installed. They sent the wrong lug nuts so I had to loosely install the old ones for now. The front end will settle a bit due to having just come down off the jack and the new springs. I have the 2" drop shackles coming for the rear. It should sit down on the tires nicely.
Little update on the truck. I don't really have a lot of time to work on it so today was a major accomplishment. Here's what I got done today; plugs, wires, cap and bug, brake hoses, wheel cylinders/brake shoes replaced, replaced master cylinder and bled the brakes. It runs pretty decent now but there is a a lot of vibration in the cab. I'm thinking the motor mounts might need to be replaced. Still a long way left to go but at least it can be started and moved out of the garage.
It runs under its own power but not well. Cylinder 3 was missing so after ruling spark out I did a compression test. All of them were at 130-135psi except for cylinder 3 which is at 30 psi. I'm guessing it is a sticking valve. I'm running a little tranny fluid in the oil right now in hopes that some gunk will get cleaned out. If that doesn't work, the next step is to pop the valve cover and see if I can manually break it loose....or if it is bent. I'm really not wanting to have to take the head off.
Is it back firing thru the carb or tailpipe? Any major smoke out the tail pipe??
It could be a valve just isn't seating all the way or even could be a burnt valve.
If you are getting a lot of oil smoke it could be a hole in the piston.
It could also be a head gasket.
If it was me I would get #3 cylinder to TDC and get an air chuck adapter for the spark plug hole. Then hook up an air compressor to the adapter. You have to make sure it's #3 cylinder is right on TDC or the engine will spin over when you hook up the air.
With the air hooked up listen for where the air is coming out. If you hear it out the exhaust it's an exhaust valve problem. If you here it coming out the carb/intake it's an intake valve problem. If you pull the oil filler cap/breather and hear the air rushing sound then it's rings or a piston problem. And if you pull the radiator cap and have bubbling it's a head gasket.
Doing that will help you diagnose the problem before you tear it down.
It's not backfiring and is blowing some smoke, but it's not that bad. The smoke is white-ish and smells like fuel which makes sense because that cylinder isn't firing. The spark plug in 3 only has gas on it. I was planning on doing the air leak test tomorrow and pulling the valve cover to see what is going on. I also need to check for a bent push rod.
edit, hard to say much about the smoke, there is a huge hole in the muffler. It might be worse if it wasn't leaking so bad.
Another small update. The valves are not stuck. There was actually very little gunk in the head; I was very happy about that. I put air in the cylinder and it is leaking out but it is hard to tell where. We've ran the truck some and there is no oil on the spark plug so I am ruling out a pitted cylinder wall. I'm thinking it is a burnt valve. Either way, the head has to come off. I was really hoping to not have to tear into the engine as it is only 63,000 miles and all original. I'll be done with my bachelors degree in about 4 weeks and am going to wait until after to pull the head off.
I made a list to finish off the performance aspect of the lightning-ish clone. This stuff would have to go along with 4.11 gears. I would also have to go really easy on the ole transmission for a while. Along with this list, I'll also need hardened push rods, assembly lube and some hoses/fuel lines. I have about half of them funds for this now. I don't have to drive the truck so waiting to save for it all wouldn't be a big deal.
Edelbrock 2027 power package (idle -5500 kit) mild cam/performer heads and intake
the black cobra valve covers and oval air cleaner (just for the looks)
ceramic coated headers
500 cfm carb
exhaust would cross to passenger side and come out through one pipe in the factory location.
It would probably be around 290-300 flywheel hp with the low compression pistons. As light as this truck is (relatively) 300 hp, 4.11 gears with the 30" tires ought to make it move decently. It's probably never going to pull a trailer and at the most have a few hundred pounds in the bed so setting the engine up like a mild street car is actually where I want to be.
Finally done with college. The last month has been absolutley crazy! I can start working on the truck again now. Hopefully it will be done in a month or two. I've sold some extra parts I had sitting around from other projects so I can finish part of it. The engine will probably stay stock for now and I'll get all the visuals done. I'm going to try to get some bucket seats done up in red for it. I have some 78 Trans Am seats hanging out in my garage, if they fit well, they are going in it. I think they might not work because the back is not adjustable.
I am in the middle of my work week and I have a lot to do on Monday and Tuesday around the house. Hopefully I can get some work done on Wednesday. Here are a few eye candy pics. The rear is coming down 2 inches...
another update, since the heads have to come off, I might as well upgrade a few things. On the way are gt40p heads, edelbrock intake, holley 600cfm carb, Ford Racing shorty headers for gt40p heads, gaskets and ARP bolts for all of it. I haven't decided on a cam yet and am still kind of wanting to do aluminum heads in the future so I might just stick with the stock cam for now. I'm guessing 210-225 hp with the above parts. It won't be anything special but better than it was stock.
The truck is looking good. I am new to the site and do not know if you would be able to see a message I posted minutes ago on your other site. I was basically asking if you are keeping the moldings on your truck, specially the upper ones, for your restoration. Please let me know if you would. Thank you.