I did some searching and found a few Companies that offer brackets that make the swap easy for these. I have no doubt that these kits would be much faster than fabricating and give less headaches. I was going to do that, but I realized that for less money I could make my own. With the money saved fabricating my own mounts, I was able to buy a new Welder, Plasma Cutter and 2 grinders, which I can use for future projects. In addition, I enjoy learning how to do things and fabricating my own mounts taught me several new skills.
Front Cab Mounts
I bought some 3×4 tube steel from a local steel provider. I found plans online for making the cab mounts, but screwed up the cuts. I decided to just mount the cab on wood shims and get it sitting correctly. I then measured a lot to make sure it was square and level and built the cab mounts. I had some spare 4×4 tube which I cut to length and put a flat 3/16 plate on top to mount to the cab. I tacked the front mounts to the frame, loosely bolted the cab to the new mounts and then started on the back.
Rear Cab Mounts
For the rear I added a piece of 1×2 across the rear floor under the original cab mount supports. I used the 1×2 to tie my seats/driveshaft loop into, plus it will help strengthen the cab floor and frame. I then measured & leveled the cab to match the frame by measuring under the rockers and the frame. There are a lot of changes in the frame here, so it’s a bit difficult to do, but take time and get it right. Once I got it level (Helps to use a floor jack to raise the rear) I measured and built my rear cab stands.
Body Bushing Install
I tacked the rear ones on and triple checked that the cab and frame were level and that the measurements from mount to cab were the same on all corners. Once I was happy with the measurements, I welded the mounts on solid. I purchased Body Bushings and installed them with a ½ inch grade 8 bolt 5” long. I also used a lock washer and grade 8 nut.
Final Thoughts on Cab Mounts
I was very worried and studied this step more than anything else. After screwing up the cuts on the plans I’d found online for cab mounts, I just winged it. It was actually pretty simple. I just got the cab sitting like I wanted and then fabricated some mounts that would line up with the holes. I probably should have tried making the mounts from the plan again, but I didn’t want to have to make a run to the metal shop.
Front Bed Mounts
When removing the body mounts off of the S10 frame, I left the front bed mount. I then placed a 4” wide piece of channel steel over it and bolted to the mount using the existing holes and ½ grade 8 fasteners.
Rear Bed Mounts
For the rear bed mount I welded a piece of 4” channel 4 ¾ long to the flat spot, about 6 inches in front of the frame end, this was put on level to the bed. This allows the original L at the bottom inside of the bed to sit on my new mounts.
Bed Cross Sills
I bought 4 pieces of 1.5” tube cut at 49.5” for cross sills and installed them across the bed on top of the L. This raised my bed floor about 2 inches, but it looks natural still. I also lined 2 of them up over the bed mounts I built and bolted them to the Channel Steel with 4 bolts under the outside boards. (If I ever need to raise the bed, I’ll only have to remove the 2 outside boards to access the bolts.
Positioning the Bed
I then used a jack to check the height of my side steps and determined that it was perfect. I then slid the bed forward so that the splash aprons (curved part on top of the steps) looked right. Note that if you have an alignment issue with the bed to cab height at the step, you can raise either with heavy fender washers.
I ran to Lowes and grabbed 9 treated 2×6. They were cut to length (78”) for my truck. These ended up about ½ wide for the bed, so I ripped out ¾” from one of them and placed it in the center. I grabbed some 3” self-tapping screws and drilled them into the 1.5” square tube I had previously placed inside the bed. I did not use the expensive metal strips, I built it like a trailer floor. It will now be very easy, should I need to access the fuel pump for replacement.