I'm a little bit bored, so I thought I'd post up a little of the history on the 87 k5 and why it has come to be how it is...
I bought the 91 in the summer of 05. It was my first 4x. I had 2 things that I was looking for, it had to be black and it had to be 4wd. Other than that, I didn't really care what it was. When i saw it, it was love at first site. It had a fresh rebuild on the Tbi 350 and a new coat of black. I have learned many things since buying it, and had I known 2% of what I know now, that wouldn't have been the one I brought home. 3 th700r4s, 2 10 bolt rear diffs, the passenger side front axle shafts, many many many stucks, and a lot of other broken parts later, I ended up buying an 82' 2 door full size Cherokee with the intention of off roading it. It had no reverse, which can make a puddle a nightmare. After realizing that that sucked, I gutted it and another 79' 4 door Cherokee. After staring at those piles of parts for a few years, I figured I had better get jeep. I wanted leafs and a 4 banger. If it was good enough for my grampa 50 years ago, it would be good enough for me. Only thing was, it could not be red or yellow. I would have bought a pink or purple one and rattle canned it flat black before buying a red one. I wanted a 95, cause its the last year with leaves. Well after pestering my buddy who had no license and a poorly running 4banger 95 yj for like a year, I finally got the call from him to come buy it. He was hard up for money, and I started low. I ended up getting it for $900. Literally pulled it from his yard to the local mechanic, who popped the hood and 3 seconds later told me that the bolts for the intake weren't there. So a few new bolts and remaned CPU and I was good to go. I think it was like day 3 and I broke the front sway bar mounts. Didn't bother me too much since the front and rear track bars were already ripped from their mounts and the leaves were bent into an S. so less that a week after buying it, I ordered up the lift. It took months to get, and in that time I had completely mangled the front leaves at a mud park that opened up 20 minutes from home. That park also claimed the second tranny in the 91 on it's opening day. So at this point, vehicle less, cause of the thrashing that they have been getting. In comes the caprice. My ex girlfriends stepdad works for a local town. He said they were gonna junk it, but it runs good and he wanted the motor. After a few months of back and forth I got the call to come drag it off. I pulled up to check it out, since I had never seen it (edit: that was the car that pulled me over and gave me my first ticket, illegal u turn), I ended up taking the battery out of the truck I was in to see if it would start, and it fired right up. It had 2 flats, a broken rear window, a nasty looking blue decal, broken brake lines, and plenty of raccoon poop. Glass starts flying forward at like 75+. Fun car. So then the 91 got a stupid amount of money thrown at it, and I babied it while abusing the yj. While the k5 was getting the rear axle swapped over to a semi float 14 bolt out of a 88 work truck (kept 6 lug wheels), a buddy of mine was getting very fed up with his daily driver, a 55 cj5 with no heat or doors, but it had a bikini top. He drove it all winter, and it was a cold winter. I bought it for $600 because he was literally going to drive it to the junk yard and have it crushed. I didn't have the heart to see that, so into my fleet it went. After realizing that that is a very impractical toy for me to have, I was trying to sell it. I hadn't spent any money on it at all except for 2 new low back bestop seats that I got a screaming deal on Craigslist. I couldn't even find an air cleaner for it, which was a huge turn off for me. so the stars aligned when I saw this on Craigslist:
I had already been on the hunt for another k5. The ad said that he wanted $1000 for it, which I didn't have, but I called him anyways to see what the deal was. Ended up talking to the guy for like 2 hours and found out he's a jeep lover. He currently has like a 76ish CJ that he is fixing all the sheet metal on, I was impressed with his sheet metal work. He just happens to mention that he would like to find a running older jeep to tool around in. Ding ding ding! A light came on above my head.
I had acquired a 90 suburban for parts for the 91 k5. The sub had a bad tranny. The 87 k5 needed a motor. 87 is the first year of Tbi in the Chevy trucks and the only year with v belts on Tbi. 88 and up has serpentine belts. I wanted to keep the serpentine so that all parts were interchangeable between the k5s. Other than the t cases (91 is np241, 87 is np208) they started life the same. Day 1:
I had a buddy come over to help, it wouldn't have moved for quite a while if he hadn't. He gave me way more time than I expected, and I think like 5 days after getting it, it looked like this:
Notice it has moved, under it's own power. Exciting! I put new motor mounts, open headers (from an 88-98 Chevy, they don't fit correctly, buy the correct one if you are doing this), and an AC delete pulley.
The first time out led to disaster, but not how you may think...