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Hey everyone.

I've been a member here for years, but never really introduced myself. I have a 1986 M1008 CUCV that I'm in the process of restoring and I'm trying to decide what sort of mods would be beneficial to the truck without completely losing the essence of it. My first thoughts were gear vender overdrive, 2 or 4" lift, and something closer to a GMC interior. I'm not a fan of trouble lights and would really like some gauges, as well as insulation and a headliner. It's a new mexico truck, so a lot of the dash plastic needs replaced. Given that, I figured I may as well replace it with a version that can accommodate gauges and has some extra vents. Maybe a tilt wheel. It definitely needs painted. The truck went into the forest service after leaving the military, and they threw a cheap coat of red paint over the original CARC paint. My first thought for color, since CARC shows scuffs so easily and is harder for civvy paint shops to work with, is to go with acrylic polyurethane enamel as a black base with candy apple green pearl, leaving it two tone with a black stripe down the side, and black bumpers and brush guard. Something a little flashy, but a hint as to its military history. It needs the roof holes welded from the light bar mounts as well. I assume they used it as a fire / tank truck. Anyway, the end goal is to have really cool camping truck. I know it won't tow much with the 6.2, or go very fast with the TH-400 transmission, but that's alright. If this engine ever blows up I'd like to replace it with a mechanical navistar 6.5 turbo diesel.

So now that you know some of my initial thoughts for the truck, my question is this: What sorts of mods can I make to the truck to make it more comfortable to use on long trips without completely losing its essence as a CUCV? I look forward to all suggestions. Try to go easy about the paint. Also, if this has been covered somewhere before, please direct me to the appropriate thread(s). Thanks everyone. It's good to be here.

-Jason
 

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79 C30 Crew 6.2
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For highway driving look into a 4L80E swap. Won't be cheap, but really the cleanest way to get an OD. Maybe could get away with a 700R4, but not sure about durability in a 3/4 ton 4x4 application. If you want to update gauges & lighting, plan to convert to a 12V electrical system if you haven't already. I actually happen to have a spare instrument cluster with the oil pressure, temp, & volt meter. Let me know if you're interested.
 

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I would stay away from a Gear Vendors overdrive as you can install a 4L80E and get the OD with torque converter lockup for about the same cost. The GV increases torque converter slip while increasing pumping losses since it has a pressurized lubrication and control system. The newer control system should prevent OD engaging in reverse, this can damage the unit.

A cold air intake helps greatly with under hood noise. I've not noticed any increase in economy with mine, highway noise is reduced.

Air conditioning is nice but a good start is a coolant bypass of the heater core will greatly help.
Keep the stock.battery, charging and starting system. 24 volt starter spins better. Only the starter is 24 volt and both 27MT direct drive and 28MT gear reduction are available online. Check starter bolts and make certain the bracket is in place.

Change out window seals, this also helps noise.
 
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