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2000 ASTRO AWD
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3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey, friends. I have a 2000 Astro AWD that is 100% factory at the moment, with the exception of the previous owner cranking the torsion bars all the way up to raise the front to the max, and putting oversized 275/60R15 tires that rub on every side! The goal for the van is a 400 or so HP v8 swap, and to have a modest ("pro touring"?) 2-3" to 3-4" drop with a 15" wheel and wider tire with a smaller profile/shorter sidewall.

FIRST QUESTION:

What's the best way to achieve a 2-4" drop in the rear?
Is an axle flip kit required, if so, does anyone know the best one to use for an AWD?? Every kit I see says "except AWD"! And is a C notch required?
Or will lowering shackles work?
ORRR would 3" lowering steel springs like this be an option??? Chevrolet S-10 1982-2003 Rear 3" Drop Leaf Springs - McGaughys Part# 33112

SECOND QUESTION:

What's the process of lowering my torsion bars back down? Loosening a nut or bolt, any special tools required? Pics or a link would be awesome.
 

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2000 Lifted 4x4 Astro 92 V8-350 Shorty
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5,409 Posts
2ND QUESTION FIRST: You simply un-crank the torsion key bolts. There is nothing special needed, and nothing special to doing it. You only need to jack the van high enough to get under it. I do my lifted van with wheels on the ground. A good 1/2 drive ratchet/socket (18mm I believe) is all that is needed. I've tweaked mine a few times to get my van level. You may want to lube the threaded side of the bolts first.

Know that changing ride height will definitely affect alignment.

I can't answer your best options for lowering.. but I will tell you this: I don't believe the AWD is the best candidate for this. One of the big reasons is the transmission/transfer-case cross support already sits quite low stock. Any lower and you might have center-vehicle scraping/bottoming-out issues. The RWD transmission support sits a little higher. Aside from that, I doubt scraping or bottoming out could hurt it much.. it is extremely stout.

Have fun!
 

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Personally you would be better off selling it and buying a rear drive Astro/Safari, for the reasons said above by Mmusicman. And why would you basically destroy the effects of AWD by lowering it?
 

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2000 ASTRO AWD
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
2ND QUESTION FIRST: You simply un-crank the torsion key bolts. There is nothing special needed, and nothing special to doing it. You only need to jack the van high enough to get under it. I do my lifted van with wheels on the ground. A good 1/2 drive ratchet/socket (18mm I believe) is all that is needed. I've tweaked mine a few times to get my van level. You may want to lube the threaded side of the bolts first.

Know that changing ride height will definitely affect alignment.

I can't answer your best options for lowering.. but I will tell you this: I don't believe the AWD is the best candidate for this. One of the big reasons is the transmission/transfer-case cross support already sits quite low stock. Any lower and you might have center-vehicle scraping/bottoming-out issues. The RWD transmission support sits a little higher. Aside from that, I doubt scraping or bottoming out could hurt it much.. it is extremely stout.

Have fun!

Hey, thanks for the reply! I appreciate your response and I've benefited greatly from many of your responses on this site, always glad to see your name pop up because I know I'll learn something!

I understand that this isn't the most practical project, but I didn't buy this project for the MOST practical reasons! ;D I sought an AWD specifically for this project, and I should have clarified, I'm not necessarily wanting it way lower than factory but I was hoping there'd be some way to get it at least 2" lower all way around! It won't be seeing vigorous offroad driving, I bought it to do a built V8 swap and have an AWD "sleeper" type, but I was hoping to lower it slightly for appearance and slightly for performance. I was also intending on a lower profile tire, rear sway bar, and looking into other ways to upgrade suspension, steering, braking. And the reason I'm definitely AT LEAST wanting to lower the torsion bars, is because they've already been adjusted the opposite direction by the pervious owner.

But to clarify and to answer the "why" would you lower an AWD? Because I want to! Dreaming of a "pro touring" / sleeper type of project.
 
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