1999 astro cargo build thread

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1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » May 22nd 2017, 9:12pm

:ty: :ty: hi all,
i've got a '99 astro rwd cargo that i'm working into a road trip van.
found the astro/safari site while researching parts; found many helpful hints, explanations & how-to's.
i hope to be able to return the favor so i joined up.
72817
the biggest part of the build will be installing most of a passenger interior - haven't seen that here so guinea pig is me.
i have no experience posting on a website so that will be interesting, planning to upload lots of pics.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby AstroWill » May 22nd 2017, 9:26pm

Welcome to the site! We like lots of pictures :)


I fixed the one above, have a look here for posting images viewtopic.php?f=5&t=110689

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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby Leeann_93 » May 23rd 2017, 1:19am

Welcome!
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby 1lowcab » May 23rd 2017, 1:23am

Welcome to the forums, we love pics!!!!
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby MI_Ghost » May 23rd 2017, 1:55am

stent wrote:the biggest part of the build will be installing most of a passenger interior - haven't seen that here so guinea pig is me.
i have no experience posting on a website so that will be interesting, planning to upload lots of pics.

Welcome aboard.
Most of the 2nd gen passenger interior will pop right into place. You will have an issue with the rear door pillar trim though. The passenger model has tabs spot welded on the rear pillar to hold the back edge of the lower panels, and the complete pillar trim pieces. Make sure you get good measurements or an accurate template of where these tabs are located. You can attach them to your van with self tapping screws.

Use cardboard or similar covered in fabric for the window fillers.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby TurnNburn » May 23rd 2017, 2:06am

MI_Ghost wrote:
Most of the 2nd gen passenger interior will pop right into place. You will have an issue with the rear door pillar trim though. The passenger model has tabs spot welded on the rear pillar to hold the back edge of the lower panels, and the complete pillar trim pieces.

X2

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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » May 23rd 2017, 3:19am

when i first found the site i explored the mysteries of the overhead console; then i went to the junkyard & dug out a console with the whole interior harness - that's when i realized what you said about the panels popping right in - now i have a working console, 2 safeway bags full of drilled out brackets & a whole lot more. the GM M/L van service manual i got is now a good friend.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » June 19th 2017, 9:50pm

grill1.jpg
cutout billet insert on junkyard safari grill
i have a lot of pictures to upload & post descriptions of. this is a test.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby srdragonusa » June 19th 2017, 10:08pm

I like the Safari grill better than the Astro Grill too. :-)
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby sixsix » June 20th 2017, 1:12am

Hi... how are you doing ?



Mike

ps: nice stuff !!!
.

Well, after all... what would Banacek say ?... “May be hard to believe... President Trump should rest easy and concede what was in fact a foregone conclusion: Another OLD MAN won with only about 50% of the Change Believers/Fools showing up."

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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » June 21st 2017, 4:26am

hi mike,
doing good, enjoying the summer.

hi srdragonusa,
i think the safari grill without the logo & the 2 sealed beam front end will be the clean simple look i'm going for.

i've added sub albums to my pic gallery & will be adding more pics as i get the time. then i plan to explain as best i can what i did & what did/did'nt go as i envisioned. for the new parts i got i'd like to link the stuff to the stores/manufacturers but don't know how yet.

later!!
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby srdragonusa » June 21st 2017, 3:34pm

Yeah hurry up you got a lot of 'splainations to do! ;-) are you converting a Cargo to a Passenger van? Why the big holes? OK I reread your OP (original post) But why? Most people rip out the OEM stuff and make their own stuff. You may want to think about sound deadening/insulation first.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » June 21st 2017, 5:36pm

i've had 2 other cargo vans (68 gmc flat front 1/2 ton & 79 gmc 1 ton) and did my own interiors that turned out fine. for the astro i just wanted to try a different approach using as much factory stuff as i could (the mr. goodwrench "keep your gm car all gm" mantra). it won't be a passenger van (just 2 front seats with an open rear) but won't be hauling or working for a living either. i have to install a lot of spot welded brackets that i cut & drilled out of junkyard vans to mount everything good & tight. there are a lot of bad roads here in denver and i don't want to end up with a rattletrap. once i get that done i'll take the panels back out & do the sound deadening/insulation thing without having to guess where the additional mounting brackets would end up. i've got my first roll of rockmat waiting. i used the d-piller covers themselves as templates to locate the mounting brackets & hacked holes in them to see what i was doing. i got 2 sets at the junkyard & will install the nice ones with speakers later. i'm hoping to end up with a nice quiet ride that has a semi-factory but hybrid look.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » August 8th 2017, 5:01am

i've scored the majority of the passenger van interior parts from several junkyard donors.
my cargo van has the blue interior but the only junked passenger van with blue interior i've found so far was used by a painter and was too trashed to salvage anything.
gray interiors seem to be in 80 percent of the junkers (the rest i've found have been tan/sand), so i will have a gray interior with a blue dash.

the main panels were $15.00 each.
the smaller plastic trim pieces were $2.50 or $5.00 each.
the two headliner pieces were $15.00 each.

the cargo body interior sheetmetal has rectangular holes already punched for holding the spring steel attaching clips on the passenger body main interior panels.
the passenger body interior sheetmetal has a lot of additional brackets which were factory spot welded to help attach the interior panels - these brackets were not factory installed on the cargo bodies.
i've used a mixture of hammer & chisel, drill, sawzall & cutoff tool to get these brackets out of the junkers.
the junkyards don't allow torches or gas engines or i would have just cut out big chunks and ground off the brackets at home.
i used sandwich bags with little notes to keep the fasteners & brackets sorted out.

the first bit of installation i did was snap the rear main panels into the existing holes.
76425
d-pillar and wheel well brackets i cut out at the junkyard :
76321
76337
i used the panels as their own template to install the cut-out brackets.
i snapped the junkyard brackets to the panel and snapped the panel to the body.
i centered the panel clip in the junkyard bracket's rectangular hole and where the bracket ended up touching the body, i marked the bracket outline on the body with a sharpie, drilled holes and then riveted on the brackets.
76449
76441
the final fit turned out fine.
i was able to see into the panels through the jack cover and the rear ac intake vent to mark the brackets so i didn't have to hack up the panels and get another set for the permanent installation.

there are additional brackets for the rear main panels that mount on top of the wheel wells.
i haven't decided how to mount them yet - welding them on will burn the undercoating, bolting them on will make holes in the wheel wells.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby computergarten » September 5th 2017, 12:37pm

I have a 2002 Astro AWD Cargo van that I am starting to convert now! BTW - Do you have cruise control? Mine does not. I dont think the cargo vans had it. I have larger springs in the back. Need to figure out how to raise the front 2 inches.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » September 26th 2017, 7:24pm

hi computergarten,
sorry about the lag time to respond.
i don't have cruise control either, but the factory put in enough of the wiring to tease me into trying to do it.
the cruise control wiring between the steering column plug and the firewall mounted control box plug was already be in place on mine.
i have gotten the control box, cable & throttle body cable clip at the junkyard.
i still need to pull a tilt steering column with the cruise control button on the turn signal switch, mount everything up & see what happens.
i'll post pics as i take them.
never having owned an awd i don't have any experience with the front end to do a lift.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby scorean » September 26th 2017, 11:11pm

computergarten wrote:..I have larger springs in the back. Need to figure out how to raise the front 2 inches.

You could start by cranking the torsion bars up to see if that gets you the lift you want. If they're old and weak, might not be a bad time to replace them (one of my originals snapped in half in Death Valley - that was a long drive home). If you can't get enough with just the torsion bars, add a body lift with pucks.
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » January 5th 2018, 2:47am

HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY !
we made it around the sun again.

i was looking on amazon for power steering hoses & noticed they have listed gibson short headers for astro vans.
the amazon listed gibson part number is "GP120S" for the stainless version, as a "direct fit bolt on replacement with OEM style connectors" for my 1999 astro.
the GP120 series headers application list on the gibson website is for 1988 - 1995 c/k trucks.
i called gibson's toll free number but the rep did'nt know if the GP120 fits.
i also left a question on the amazon listing.
has anyone here tried these headers ?
i'd love to get a set...
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby stent [OP] » April 6th 2018, 9:58pm

i've been laying out the junkyard parts like a big model kit in a storage area so i can visualize what i've got & what i need.
DSCN6460.JPG
carpet is dirty but should clean up pretty good - i'll be putting my adrian rubber mat over it anyway - the sandwich effect of sound deadening
DSCN6461.JPG
headliner pieces. note that the blue piece from the cargo interior is shorter than the front section for the passenger interior.
Attachments
DSCN6459.JPG
leather seats with power bases
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Re: 1999 astro cargo build thread

Postby 90safari » April 6th 2018, 10:51pm

Welcome, and nice project you have going on. I took a look thru your gallery, and you're making nice progress. Keep up the good work. 8-)
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