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  • 1985 Chevy 1-Ton Crew Cab - Project Dool-Eh - Busted Knuckles

1985 Chevy 1-Ton Crew Cab - Project Dool-Eh - Busted Knuckles

A Crew Cab Chevy 1-Ton

Phil Gordon
Dec 26, 2014
Photographers: Phil Gordon
When you think of going retro, by definition you know you’re going backward. For Chris Grantham of London, Ontario, Canada, who was born in 1983, it was only fitting to purchase a truck from around that time. After the success of his first custom mini-truck build, Chris bought a new home with a much larger garage space. With the added space and a second child, Chris wanted something bigger than his mini-truck. He located a bone-stock ’85 square-body Chevy 1-ton Crew Cab about two hours away. Knowing his skills with suspension and bodywork he saw a vision nobody else could.
After bouncing ideas around his Prize Possessions club members, Chris decided to transform the Crew Cab into a dualie. The thought process was simple, Chris says, “Nothing is cooler than a ’bagged and body-dropped tow pig.” He tracked down some 22.5 semitruck wheels through the local classifieds and ordered the 8- to 10-lug adapters from Tennessee Wheel & Tire. Being a welder by trade, the anticipation to rebuild the new Chevy was intense. The goal was to show off every skill Chris had and learn even more.
The Chevy got started by being stripped, and most of the frame was tossed to the scrapyard in favor of a new beefy 4x3 tube frame from the firewall back. The new house and garage wouldn’t hold the truck due to its enormous size, so Chris shortened the frame 12 inches. The normally simple fabrication is not something that would fly in the Grantham household, so the creativity started with the back half by building a one-off crossmember with different-sized holes to add strength to the Chevy. It was welded and metal-finished to give it a better appearance. The frame was Z’d 4.5 inches to account for the new frame, and the front wheels were moved forward 1.5 inches to help center the wheels in the wheelwell.
Photo 2/3   |   1985 Chevy Crew Cab Rear Side View
Chris needed his new dualie to be able to lie on the ground so he added a set of Airlift Dominator 2600 airbags at every corner. Belltech 2-inch drop spindles were installed and a heavily modified front crossmember matched the contour of the ’bags. The upper and lower control arms were modified as well. For the rear, a four-link with Watt’s link help keep the axle centered. The Watt’s link has a chassis-mounted pivot point as opposed to the more common axle-mounted pivot. All brackets and tabs were constructed and cut by Trevor Bradfield.
All six wheels on the Chevy are 22.5-inch Alcoa semi wheels milled down to 22 inches by Ian Jolly. The rubber is 265/35/22 Wanli S1098 tires. An LMC billet grille was added to stand out amongst all the square bodies. There are many plans Chris has in the works to complete his custom dualie, including an intensely powerful motor that can handle the towing capabilities to events throughout the Ontario area and large truck shows in the States.
Among the people to thank for the guidance and help throughout the build, Chris credits his wife, Kala, and their two kids for understanding the long hours in the garage and always being beside him. His entire club Prize Possessions has become more of a family, and without their help this project would have never been started.
Photo 3/3   |   1985 Chevy Crew Cab Rear View
Inside the Build
Owner and City/State:Chris Grantham, London, Ontario, Canada
Year/Make/Model:1985 Chevy 1-Ton Crew Cab
Club Affiliation: Prize Possessions
Rearend: GM 1-ton dualie
Front Suspension: Boxed and Z’d frame, Belltech spindles, Airlift airbags
Rear Suspension: 3x4 tube frame, four-link with Watt’s link, Airlift airbags
Mods: LMC billet grille
Stock, patina
Wheels & Tires
Wheels: 22.5-inch Alcoa semi wheels, 8- to 10-lug adapters
Tires: 265/35/22 Wanli S1098
- OF



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