2/3 drop kit on a 2018 PPV?

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CrashTestDummy

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We have the Belltech 2/3 drop kit on our 2010 PPV, and it's served us well. I remember when I installed it, using the factory wheels, I had to cut ~1/2" off the lower ball joint studs and use a shortened nut so things would fit with the drop spindle.

The daily driver for the new to us 2018 will be my bride, and she really liked the drop on the 2010, so we'll probably do this again on the 2018. While not a big deal, trimming the spindle stud DID add a few hours to the install, so I wanted to know if this is still a requirement on the 2018? It's nice to know ahead of time before blowing everything apart and then dragging the inside of the front wheels across the stud that's in the way.

Additionally, what's the best kit for this, and where's the best place to get it from? We got ours used from a Forum member here years ago, and while it didn't come from him, Tony at NorcalSS was very helpful with all my stupid questions. The rear springs were bit soft on that kit, and we ended up installing a ~3/4" spacer to keep the rear LCAs off the bump stops all the time, even after trimming them (the bump stops).

Thanks for any information.
 

P_E_O_P_L_E_S

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I installed the same kit on a 2019 suburban ,regular suspension, and had to cut the same bolt off a bit. Not sure how much I cut, maybe 3/8, but the stock wheel still didn’t fit and ended up putting the aftermarket wheels on earlier than I wanted to.
 

iamdub

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We have the Belltech 2/3 drop kit on our 2010 PPV, and it's served us well. I remember when I installed it, using the factory wheels, I had to cut ~1/2" off the lower ball joint studs and use a shortened nut so things would fit with the drop spindle.

The daily driver for the new to us 2018 will be my bride, and she really liked the drop on the 2010, so we'll probably do this again on the 2018. While not a big deal, trimming the spindle stud DID add a few hours to the install, so I wanted to know if this is still a requirement on the 2018? It's nice to know ahead of time before blowing everything apart and then dragging the inside of the front wheels across the stud that's in the way.

Additionally, what's the best kit for this, and where's the best place to get it from? We got ours used from a Forum member here years ago, and while it didn't come from him, Tony at NorcalSS was very helpful with all my stupid questions. The rear springs were bit soft on that kit, and we ended up installing a ~3/4" spacer to keep the rear LCAs off the bump stops all the time, even after trimming them (the bump stops).

Thanks for any information.

How does it add a few hours? Used a hack saw? If not borrow one, you can buy a cheap grinder ($15) and a 5-pack of cut-off discs ($5) from Harbor Freight to buzz right through it in seconds.

As far as the best kit for a 2018, that's out of my wheelhouse. Other than maybe the spindles, I believe most everything else is the same as the previous generations. So, you'll have the same soft rear unless there are better springs now.
 

89Suburban

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How does it add a few hours? Used a hack saw? If not borrow one, you can buy a cheap grinder ($15) and a 5-pack of cut-off discs ($5) from Harbor Freight to buzz right through it in seconds.

As far as the best kit for a 2018, that's out of my wheelhouse. Other than maybe the spindles, I believe most everything else is the same as the previous generations. So, you'll have the same soft rear unless there are better springs now.


Or a single diamond cutting wheel. I can't tell you the last time I used an abrasive since I slapped one of those onto my grinder. It's been well over a year for sure. I was always waiting for one of those abrasives to grenade may ass to shreds. Many time they got caught and snapped into pieces on me and I got lucky. I still have a box of them for backups but the diamond one has been holding up very well. Definitely a lot less anxiety tearing into some steel.
 

iamdub

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Or a single diamond cutting wheel. I can't tell you the last time I used an abrasive since I slapped one of those onto my grinder. It's been well over a year for sure. I was always waiting for one of those abrasives to grenade may ass to shreds. Many time they got caught and snapped into pieces on me and I got lucky. I still have a box of them for backups but the diamond one has been holding up very well. Definitely a lot less anxiety tearing into some steel.

I always thought the diamond ones were for masonry. I don't like the abrasive cut-off wheels from HF since they're thin and wear too fast. But, if just for this project, they'll be fine. Experience and PPE is a must. I use a cut-off wheel as my scalpel and the best ones I've found for the money are DeWalt. I'd have to look at one in the shop to get the exact model number. I sliced an entire door of a safe in half with only 1.5 of the DeWalt discs. I should see if Project Farm has a test on them. I think he does and I've probably seen it.
 

89Suburban

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I always thought the diamond ones were for masonry. I don't like the abrasive cut-off wheels from HF since they're thin and wear too fast. But, if just for this project, they'll be fine. Experience and PPE is a must. I use a cut-off wheel as my scalpel and the best ones I've found for the money are DeWalt. I'd have to look at one in the shop to get the exact model number. I sliced an entire door of a safe in half with only 1.5 of the DeWalt discs. I should see if Project Farm has a test on them. I think he does and I've probably seen it.


Here is the one I have, I think Diablo makes them too.


636440B9-5E9E-4387-B353-0C393185855C.jpegDD546B54-A6CA-4C20-B2EF-932665C1DC45.jpeg
 
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CrashTestDummy

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I have and used the angle grinder, but wanted to cut as little off the stud as possible so I had as many threads there as possible to hold things together. So the process was; cut, test, cut, test, etc., until I had the clearance, Clarence (see what I did there?). After a few cuts, I had to hit the hardware store for some half-height nuts to hold everything together and still clear the wheel. We live out in the boonies, so a road trip to a store is, a road trip. It's held well, as-is for several 10's of thousands of my wife-driving-the-thing-miles, so I guess I'll prepare for that possibility beforehand, even if I don't have to use it.

It does look like almost everything except the spindles are a direct swap, so we'll probably let the 2010 go with the kit it has, and order a new one for the 2018. Heck, the spindles may even swap, but I'm not wanting to be the guinea pig for that project, especially since my wife will be doing most of the heavy-lifting.

So, thoughts on the better kit? Belltech? Max Trac? Someone else, or are they pretty much re-boxes of the same kit?
 

iamdub

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I have and used the angle grinder, but wanted to cut as little off the stud as possible so I had as many threads there as possible to hold things together. So the process was; cut, test, cut, test, etc., until I had the clearance, Clarence (see what I did there?). After a few cuts, I had to hit the hardware store for some half-height nuts to hold everything together and still clear the wheel. We live out in the boonies, so a road trip to a store is, a road trip. It's held well, as-is for several 10's of thousands of my wife-driving-the-thing-miles, so I guess I'll prepare for that possibility beforehand, even if I don't have to use it.

It does look like almost everything except the spindles are a direct swap, so we'll probably let the 2010 go with the kit it has, and order a new one for the 2018. Heck, the spindles may even swap, but I'm not wanting to be the guinea pig for that project, especially since my wife will be doing most of the heavy-lifting.

So, thoughts on the better kit? Belltech? Max Trac? Someone else, or are they pretty much re-boxes of the same kit?

I thought the BT spindles came with the thin nuts. Although you might not have gotten those with the used kit. If you get a new BT kit and it has the nuts, you could install them and trim the stud just under the nut. Be sure it'll clear your spare wheel if it's a smaller diameter. The suspensions from '07-'20 are essentially identical, but I think the '15+ have aluminum spindles and the arms have ball joints of a different size and/or taper and that's why they have specific spindles for those.
 
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CrashTestDummy

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Quite possible the nuts didn't come with my kit. Thank you for the info. I was wondering why the spindle looked different than our 2010 spindle did. I now see on closer look that the spindle is aluminum.
 

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