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Wheels, Tires, Suspension and Brakes Keep them doggies rollin', rawhide

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  #1  
Old December 15th, 2016, 02:38 AM
fritz fritz is offline
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Default 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Hello to all.

I am interested in knowing the suspension differences on 1960 to 1966 GMC trucks.

1. what are the differences in 1/2 ton vs 3/4 ton truck suspensions.

2. What are the differences in early 60's vs the later years to 1966.( assuming they made changes? and if so what year.)

3. How do the differences effect the ride comfort and handling.

Thank you in advance for your reply.
Fritz
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  #2  
Old December 15th, 2016, 06:24 AM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Fritz, there is basic information here;

http://6066gmcguy.com/GMCID2.html

My 61 with the torsion bars rides nice and smooth. I'd like to add a front anti-sway bar in the future as I've read that helps.
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  #3  
Old December 15th, 2016, 01:44 PM
fritz fritz is offline
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Hello Mr, Funky,
Thank you for the link apparently for the site. next time I should look around a bit before I post a question. That explains things.

Do you own a coil spring truck? and if so is there an appreciable difference in ride and load handling abilities? love the 60 and 61 hoods! Funky indeed!

Fritz
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Old December 15th, 2016, 02:57 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Fritz, I own several 1960-62 torsion bar equipped trucks and a similar number of 63-66 coil spring trucks. When I drive the heavier 60-62 torsion bar equipped trucks, the ride feels significantly smoother and to me I feel as if these trucks must also have a lower center of gravity, because the cornering is improved at higher speeds and body roll is far less than on a 63-66. the 60-62 trucks seem to give me less bounce and jarring inside the cab from running across things like potholes and railroad tracks. The 60-62 seats in deluxe models have a Wood bottom w/ thicker foam than spring + thinner foam on custom cab seats after 1962 so the ride comfort is improved even more when you have the special wood bottomed seat. To prevent body roll and increase front end stability, an optional front sway bar was offered in 63-66 to compensate for the loss in steering stability from giving up the torsion bar front end. These can be found from time to time and added to any 63-66 truck if you buy one.
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1966 Suburban Carryall w/ Clamshells, all 4 sliders, 351 V6 w/factory automatic, PS, PB and assembly-line installed A/C, hazard switch, deluxe heater, optional Ammeter & Oil Guages, 3 rows of seats, Custom Cab pkg, sway bar, 2 speedd wiper w/ windshield washers, radio.
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Old December 15th, 2016, 03:10 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Thank you MR. Nut,
That is the information based on experience I was looking for. It seems to me that the torsion bar suspension would be a more controlled ride and offer better roll stability.

Do you have a photo link showing your trucks?

Thank you for your reply,

Fritz
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Old December 15th, 2016, 03:10 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Morning Fritz;
I used to have a pair of 70 and 73 GMC's. Those were coil sprung 3/4 ton trucks and rode just fine. I never really hauled too much except band PA equipment.
The ride on the torsion suspension does feel different and unique from the coils; sorta car-like and almost floaty( but not bouncy), if that makes sense.

Yeah I've come to really like that husky hood Henry
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Old December 15th, 2016, 04:11 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Quote:
Originally Posted by fritz View Post
Thank you MR. Nut,
That is the information based on experience I was looking for. It seems to me that the torsion bar suspension would be a more controlled ride and offer better roll stability.

Do you have a photo link showing your trucks?

Thank you for your reply,

Fritz
Fritz I have done a terrible job of doing build threads or taking pics of my trucks because almost every one of them is in a constant state of construction or restoration it seems. Currently I have my Black 60 GMC (pictured below with my buddy and P.O. Josh Quillen's family for a Christmas Card)and Son's 61 Apache dismantled for some level of restoration work that is underway, but I have my other 61 Apache (below) and the 66 GMC Suburban both as drivers, along with a Black SWB 63 Chevy and a Yellow 66 Chevy - everything else is disabled or taken partially apart....here's a couple snaps of a few of them
Attached Images
File Type: jpg front view.jpg (74.4 KB, Multiple views, 8 clicks)
File Type: jpg Front Drivers side view.JPG (136.7 KB, Multiple views, 7 clicks)
File Type: jpg Rear passenger side view.JPG (102.3 KB, Multiple views, 7 clicks)
File Type: jpg Yellow 66.JPG (142.6 KB, Multiple views, 7 clicks)
File Type: jpg complete truck with Quillen family.jpg (108.6 KB, Multiple views, 6 clicks)
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My 60-66 GMC Projects:

1960 Custom Cab 1000 SWB Big Window, 305A V6, factory PS & PB, Clock, Tach, Hood Jet, Radio and Hydramatic.

1966 Suburban Carryall w/ Clamshells, all 4 sliders, 351 V6 w/factory automatic, PS, PB and assembly-line installed A/C, hazard switch, deluxe heater, optional Ammeter & Oil Guages, 3 rows of seats, Custom Cab pkg, sway bar, 2 speedd wiper w/ windshield washers, radio.
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Old December 15th, 2016, 04:26 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

couple more of the 66 GMC Suburban - it has literally every factory and dealer add-on option you could get in 66. Engine is the optional 351 Magnum w/ factory assembly line installed and working AC, PB, PS, all three rows of seats, clamshells, radio, 2 speed wiper and washers, sway bar, you name it - its got it.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg new cluster.JPG (103.5 KB, Multiple views, 6 clicks)
File Type: jpg rear view.jpg (66.9 KB, Multiple views, 7 clicks)
File Type: jpg pass front view.jpg (79.7 KB, Multiple views, 6 clicks)
File Type: jpg AC controls.jpg (639.3 KB, Multiple views, 7 clicks)
File Type: jpg Main engine view.jpg (176.5 KB, Multiple views, 8 clicks)
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My 60-66 GMC Projects:

1960 Custom Cab 1000 SWB Big Window, 305A V6, factory PS & PB, Clock, Tach, Hood Jet, Radio and Hydramatic.

1966 Suburban Carryall w/ Clamshells, all 4 sliders, 351 V6 w/factory automatic, PS, PB and assembly-line installed A/C, hazard switch, deluxe heater, optional Ammeter & Oil Guages, 3 rows of seats, Custom Cab pkg, sway bar, 2 speedd wiper w/ windshield washers, radio.
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  #9  
Old December 15th, 2016, 11:26 PM
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

I've got a 61 1500 series step-side with a nice long tray on it. As far as general handling goes, despite the lack of power steering and power brakes (I'm still running on 4 drums as well) I really can't complain. The old man corners much better than I would've thought. Admittedly, if I'm in a situation where I've got to go full lock on the steering wheel (like a the end of a cul-de-sac for example) you can tell he doesn't like it all that much. Obviously parking lots with their modern day postage stamp sized spaces pose an issue from time to time. But again, you sort-of know going into it that you're not going to get the handling of a modern vehicle. I think that's part of the charm.

I have found it to be a bit light in the rear though. So I tend to drive accordingly when it comes to driving over manhole covers and what not. Having said that, I'm not carrying any weight. So I reckon it wouldn't be as much of an issue if he did a bit more work.

The 'floaty' description that someone gave is pretty apt for mine as well. Not so much over bumps and such (because of the empty tray) but more so in that once I start approaching highway speed everything lightens up a bit. Not in a dangerous way. Just enough to remind you to pay attention to what's going on.

Sorry for the long-winded answer. I do tend to go on a bit LOL

Last edited by Jmclendon; December 15th, 2016 at 11:31 PM. Reason: Fat fingers. I'll never be a pianist.
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  #10  
Old December 16th, 2016, 03:42 AM
fritz fritz is offline
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Default Re: 1960/1961 Suspension VS later years

Thank you J.M. I appreciate the anecdotal description and I understand perfectly well. It almost seems to me that front coil on later models was done for manufacturing economies over the torsion bar suspension.

Fritz
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