Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop? - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 1:49 PM Thread Starter
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Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

I've searched the forum and didn't find much on this ...was wondering if anyone has done a full blown body drop on a 68-72 chevelle? there seems to be a lot of guys on here with so much talent and a no compromise attitude-buttslappers chevelle, troys procharged 69, widowmaker's build, malitude2, tom a's build etc, etc...thats what has me curious as to why no one has gone those route in order to have the suspension travel they have worked so hard for and still have a killer stance? I do apologize as I feel a little silly asking this-please don't crucify me guys! also...engine setbacks...once again on the lines of so many guys with a no compromis attitude, I haven't seen anyone really pushing engine setbacks minus two cars built by hot rods to hell-the chevelle from hell, which minus the front frame stub I think we can exclude as its basically built entirely from scratch, and patrick wilson's 67 chevelle...just kinda curious to hear opinions from you guys. thanks!
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 2:46 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

Well its certainly something you could do to help lower CG and help out the stance as well. Its definitely much harder to body drop a chevelle then it is a truck where you see it done so often. I think that is the main reason because for the amount of gain you get its not really worth all the work. You would have to be mostly doing it for looks and less for performance.

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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 2:53 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

Hood clearance for BBC is already an issue, with a body drop... issue turned problem

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 2:54 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

i went as far as half height body bushings, but thats about it. right now theyre just the polys that i cut shorter, but eventually theyll be either aluminum or delrin.

there are a lot of issues that go along with it; driveshaft tunnel, trans tunnel, trans crossmember, uca crossmember, rear wheel wells, front inner fenders, exhaust............ and thats just a start.

in order to gain that killer stance, i cut out and replaced the uca crossmember and notched the frame rails. it allows me about another 1.5" (+1/2" from the body bushings) drop over the max before with 2.5" of bump travel remaining. frame rails will be about 5.5" off the ground with a 28.5" tall tire. its pretty friggin low.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 3:08 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

I moved the engine back 1/2" in my Chevelle. I know it's not much but it did provide the extra clearance I needed for my radiator, twin fans, and belt system.

Herb

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 5th, 09, 3:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

yea, i had similiar thoughts of the driveshaft tunnel, transmission tunnel, clearance for uca crossmember, rear wheel wells, losing the front inner fenders, exhaust to floor plan clearance....but one thing I couldn't get my head around is the radiator core support. lets say we cut the entire floor pan from the firewall back, dropped the body level with the frame rails....now, the radiator core support is still obviously at its original height....how would one go about getting the entire front end to be at the same level as the dropped shell?
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 6th, 09, 2:37 AM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

You would have to section and modify the core support and mount the radiator etc. accordingly. 2" body drop=2" section in the core support. Probably easy compared to all the tunnel and floor mods.

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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 6th, 09, 8:25 AM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

If you want to run front inner fenders on your car, that is the limiting factor on how low you can go (unless you modified them too). I thought real hard about doing a body-drop on mine, but in the end, it would have resulted in the body "ride height" being the same as it is now, but the frame, engine, etc sitting higher in relation to the ground. If I was starting over with a fresh build, I would have probably done it, but I was on a timeline that didn't allow making things more complicated than they already were.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 6th, 09, 2:58 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

thanks for responding guys...yea, almost immediately after I hit "post" i realized all you'd have to section the core support accordingly. in an ideal world just seemed liked a great way to get a nice stance, while not losing ground clearance or suspension travel.
Another thing that had me really wondering about it...with a few guys already modying their trans/driveshaft tunnels for proper driveshift angles w/ a tko, etc. AND there seems to be a lot of talk of guys wanting to go the 3-link route-well your already removing the uca crossmember, and maybe I'm way off as I'm not really up to date with Lateral Dynamics....but I really don't understand how you could package a 3-link without some serious surgery to the back seat floor pan area. so between the trans/driveshaft tunnel mods, floor pan surgery to package a 3-link as well as uca crossmember removal-seems like you'd already be past the half way point to accomplishing a body drop. Also, not pertinent schwartz chassis or SRG chassis, but it seems to me if anyone went the Max-G route you'd essentially be crafting your own floor plan anyway which makes the body drop seem equally ambitious. Oh, anyone think headroom would be an issue?....thanks again for entertaining my curiousity guys, Team Chevelle is amazing with soooo many talented, superbly knowledgeable people.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old Mar 7th, 09, 8:23 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

there is a guy named Travis that posts on here some that is body dropping a 64. well, i guess you can call it that. I believe he is building a custom chassis and chopping the top too.

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 5th, 11, 1:11 AM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

I have a 71 malibu I'm currently body dropping, started off as a standard air bag job, ended up "z" the frame 2 inches in the front and 4 in the rear. figured I was going to have to build a new tunnel and new floor boards for the rear so I decided to body drop it about an inch and a half as well. i will be running either a 383 or an 6.0 depending on stock malibu hood clearance, built to lay frame on 20x10 rear and 20 8.5 fronts. gonna be close! ill try to post some pics up soon.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 9th, 11, 10:28 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

If you are doing what I am... Custom wheel tubs, drive shaft tunnel, trans tunnel you get to look at a few more when dropping it. Steering shaft alignment, the aforementioned core support, bumpers, front wheel to body issues. Theres alot to it.

I am seriously considering solid and permanently mounting the body to the frame. Considering I am going with a full cage I dont see the benefits or welding the cage to the frame and mounting the body with removable bushing that arent removable. I may go the roundy-round way and weld the frame to the rockers. This is kinda like a poor mans Art Morrison Max-G frame. They have you weld a similar perimeter frame to the rockers. With the right mods to the frame, welding it in gives you similar benefits. Wouldnt be worth it with a roll BAR that is welded to the floor as opposed to the frame as in a roll CAGE.

The big issue with going that low though is actually turning the front wheels. Laying frame is all well and good but if you cant turn the wheels what good is it? Profiling and showing your car is all well and good but PT is about going fast in a few directions. If your attempt at Low CG hampers your abilty to take a corner then whats the point? Point being is a Low Rider is different than a PT car with a low stance. We shall see how low I can go.....

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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 10th, 11, 2:13 AM
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Exclamation Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

I think the extra ground clearance would be nice but doing a body drop seems to intrusive for a stock frame imo. The Max G I believe you have to cut out the floor anyway so that makes the choice easy. I like the looks of the Ironworks frames which I think will address this issue. In looking at my car it does not seem very low however the reality is that I have just a hair under 3" between the collector flange and the ground. I only have about 15 miles on the car, but scrapped at about 50 mph on a slight bump that otherwise would not be felt in other cars. My crossemember is a little under 5" and the bottom of the front coil over shock is ~4" from ground.
I have the coil vers cranked all the up so I will have to look for a spacer to raise it any. Keep in mind this car is not even weighted down with side and rear glass, front bumper and inetrior. Even with these issues looking back I still don't think I would consider a body drop on my car with a stock frame.

Tom

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 10th, 11, 2:32 AM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

Header clearance is a different issue. Ive seen a lot of headers that hang way too low on regular height cars and could at the very least gain clearance with V band flanges. A nice frame doesnt fix crappy headers. Ive seen Hedman and Hooker headers that hung well over 4 inches below the floor with exhaust flanges that had the point of a 3 bolt flange facing down making things worse.

The exhaust seems to be the main sticky point for most guys lowering their cars. For me I just have down pipes to deal with but a nice (expensive) set of headers gains all the clearence you can get. Unfortunately you arent gonna get it from Summit for 400 bucks or so.

I do agree that a body drop is way more work than 97% of us are willing to go. Yes a Max G chassis requires cutting the floor out but so does putting in a newer tranny, moving the engine back, lowering the car and doing a custom rear end. The only difference is about $15K and all new parts up front.

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old Apr 10th, 11, 4:26 PM
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Re: Just Dreaming, but curious--Chevelle body drop?

id cut the bushings in half again, but no more. there starts to be a lot of clearnace issues, especially with the front mount of the rear lca's. i have about 1/8th here, so i need to clearance it just a little. luckily, there is no flex in the floor with a person applying weight to that spot.

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