2004 Cargo WIP

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2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 11th 2020, 2:23am

This is my 2nd Astro my first was an 98/awd Cargo LS with all the options, unfortunately it got too rusty for my liking and I could not take on a "rustoration" at the time...Here in the Snow Belt these are getting so hard to find with out serious rust issues I got lucky on this one it's pretty solid all around, it just has some dents and the PO took a knife or razor to the vinyl lettering and now it has some ugly scratch's on the other wise straight quarter panels...oh well I'll repair them and seal them with epoxy primer till I can get around to paint...
Attachments
P9061006.JPG
I am a fan of the GM Pewter gray I think it has potential for some cool 70's style stripes and graphics
P9061005.JPG
P9061012.JPG
P9061011.JPG
only some surface rust so far, but the brake lines need some attention
P9061008.JPG
I swapped out the 3/4 head liner for an early front section with the lighted visors and overhead console
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 12th 2020, 3:55am

Today I finished putting it back together...it now has all new rotors & pads front upper control arm bushings both Idler Arms, KYB shocks up front new ABS sensor wires since they get brittle and break when you try to remove them.
The front sway bar had the usual cracked and broken ends, I've ordered a solid one from Pro-Forged it should be here tomorrow...
I gave up on the LS grille and composite lights for now, it really needs a complete harness ( engine and dash) to do it right, that'll have to be a project for later when I acquire said harness's....

So I did a quickee rattle can paint job on the OE grille for now it actually looks pretty good with the LS Bumper cover...that'll get installed tomorrow and I'll post photo's

I have a Flow master 40series muffler left over from the G Van that I was going to put on e-bay but eh...Hmmm I know where that can go!.... it should sound beastly since the PO already removed the CAT.

NEXT WEEK...it'll get a set of KYB's for the rear and a ADDCO 7/8 sway bar, by then I hope to have decided on which rims I'm going with :think:
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby MechBob » September 12th 2020, 4:16am

Um,this van looks very nice,ant your defined work is very nice!,You are building a very nice vehicle!!!!
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 12th 2020, 6:24pm

not the exact look I want but it'll have to do for now...it's getting there...having retired from body work I now have to settle for back yard rattle cans and a few scrapes and scratch's but then that is the look I'm going for, A seasoned driver with a few mods....not a don't touch me show truck
Attachments
P9121019.JPG
P9121021.JPG
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 12th 2020, 6:43pm

Rims are next on the agenda. I rigged up a devise to check the clearance for wider meat...looks like I'll be going with 255/45R18 on a 18x8.5 Silverado rim...I really like the 2019 Gloss Black Trail Boss wheels and the Replica rims are somewhat affordable, the 255/45's are the same dia as the 215's on it now, with a 26 offset they should clear the wheel openings
Attachments
P9121020.JPG
s-l500.jpg
s-l500.jpg (36.29 KiB) Viewed 417 times
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Fueling (5/8 tank)
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby Godron629 » September 12th 2020, 10:54pm

Rattle can grill looks great. Need to do grill and bumpers on mine. Maybe black, maybe silver if it could look this good :shifty:
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Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo 4.3L V6 RWD

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby markmitch » September 13th 2020, 3:06am

Looks good I did the same thing to my 98 grill. I don't think I will ever get the idea of huge wheels and rubber band tires on anything to be honest specially on a vehicle that may go off road even the smallest amount. I do like the look of the wheels though. I used to build off road K5 blazers and the idea back then was the bigger the tire the better she runs through rough terrain. Mark
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 14th 2020, 3:23am

Thanks guys I wasn't sure how it would come out but it exceeded my expectations...the LS bumper cover makes it

I think I've spent the last two weeks researching every different tire wheel combo there is and I fell in love with these wheels, even though I've never been a fan of black rims! But I know for a fact they won't look as bad as 19's or 20's...A friend had a high top 2wd with 19" dubs on rubber bands and it looked redonkculous... the 255/45 still has some sidewall to it and a decent tread width (9") a taller sidewall needs to have a narrower tread for clearance while turning, and with 26 offset they would look too skinny...I dislike skinny even more than rubber bands..the G20 had 295/50's on the back and I'm still temped to go for that look...but I really like these rims....
This van is my new summer toy it won't be seeing snow and definitely no off-road use since all our open space has been developed or restricted from motor vehicle use, the closest to off-road will be a dirt access road to a camping site
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
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Posts: 63
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Gender: Male
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Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 14th 2020, 6:12am

"I used to build off road K5 blazers and the idea back then was the bigger the tire the better"

Ya me too...I've been building my own toys since I can remember, I've built a few 4x4's but mostly 2WD's and a bunch of bikes but I always had a van!....back in the day I had a Int. Scout 4" lift 33's a killer Chevy Small Block, custom interior custom, body mods, custom paint, but it wasn't lifted enough for wheeling, it was more of a parking-lot warrior with a top speed of OMG the speedo is buried we're drifting across lanes and it's still accelerating AHHHH!!!!....true story I was there.... I did have some friends into the muddin thing, they'd break it on the weekend work on it all week then beat the bag off it the next weekend....I could never afford that game...and that was way before crazy tall rims and low profile tires..

You know...with all our trails and mud runs closed off and not even any parking lot 4-wheeling to be found...With the best cruise strip in New England no longer thee place to go with muscle cars classics or custom anything, the only place to enjoy our rides has been car shows but this summer just about every car show and cruise night never happened ...I'm not even sure what I'm building this van for but I am compelled to build something and I can't stop until my bones give up the ghost....without any kind of theme or fad to shoot for I'm "winging it" I'm building it like back in the days before technology took over our lives, before billet CNC parts, before Chevy Impala's on 40" rims, before mini trucks laying frame,and monster trucks pulling each other around in parking lots, before stereo systems that can be heard from outer space and before salvage yards crushed cars instead of selling the parts, before technology the internet and social media turned earth's population into entitled sniveling cry babies and before pep boys auto zone and e-bay were the only parts stores and all the parts came from China... back when we didn't have much money and the local salvage yard was our second home when our rides didn't have pretty paint or even wheels that matched and driving anywhere didn't mean taking you life into your own hands because people back then knew how to drive...nope I'm not sure what I'm building this for...
I want a 4x4 Astro lifted 6" with a Vortec 350 swap, a pine slat interior with a bed in the back and storage draws underneath, a safari roof rack for extra stuff and my enclosed trailer towed behind with my entire life in it...lol...who am I kidding I'm not going to live long enough to do all that and where would I go? .....sucks to get old and still able to remember the old days....

I'm just going to keep on working on my Astro because it just feels good and it makes me happy....at this stage of life that's huge and if I turn into an ASTROHOLIC what's wrong with that........... yup I worked on it all day today and didn't do anything else...Yahooo
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 15th 2020, 2:44am

Sorry for the rantings, I don't get out much....
with the front suspension back together It's time to tackle the rear. There was some rear-end howl on the trip home and when I rotated one tire with it on stands there was way too much noise coming from the spider gears, so I pulled the differential out today, the ring and pinion gears are mint but the spiders and pin show heavy wear and the bearings could stand to be replaced so I picked up a Posi unit off Craigslist and ordered a Diff. rebuild kit plus a set of KYB's and an ADDCO sway bar. I might as well get u-joints while I'm at it...
I got to doing some cleaning on the engine this weekend and I found what looks to be early signs of intake leakage. I'm sure I'll be back there soon I'll keep an eye on it, but the engine runs smooth and very quiet,I've replace the vacuum line going to the heater but it still has a slight stumble off idle. It did sit for several months before I got it and I haven't driven it since so I'll hit it with fuel treatment before I do start driving it...supposedly the transmission has been fully serviced and it did work fine on the trip home so I won't worry about that until it acts up...

I wish I had the energy to do even half the job that DomSan is doing...he is an inspiration :bow:
Attachments
P9141032.JPG
Does this make me a "Shade Tree Mechanic"
P9141033.JPG
real clean Torsen Helical Gear posi
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
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Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby Safarimeister » September 15th 2020, 3:47am

Nice work... very interested to know just how those 18" rims will fit.
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby Rein » September 15th 2020, 10:30pm

Ooh, ooh, ooh - swivel sockets! :) There is ALWAYS another tool you really want...
2004 RWD Astro Base purchased late 2018 - 3rd time’s a charm?
2000 AWD Safari SLE purchased 2011 - hanging onto for parts and possible rebuild.
1988 AWD Safari purchased very used; replaced engine w/rebuilt; scrapped at 23 years.

Falmouth, Cape Cod, USA
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby Brewtus » September 17th 2020, 4:37am

Your van looks really nice! I’m excited to see how it turns out. What part of the snow belt do you reside in?
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 19th 2020, 3:50am

Thanks guys
Hey Brewtus, I live in the northeast corner of Mass. just 5 minutes from the NH border and ten miles from the Atlantic Ocean

I can't wait to see those rims on it, once I've got the drive train buttoned up I'll order them.
I love my swivels, they are my go to socket of choice

I did the brake lines this week, both left and right front plus the main line going to the rear, the left started leaking soon as I hit it with a wire brush and I'm not waiting for the others to fail.

I love working with this nickel copper line it so flexible it can be formed in place, it saved so much time over conventional steel tubing and it won't corrode :thumbup:

I installed the Torsen diff. but I couldn't get the lash set with the OE shims I need a thinner one for the right side so I ordered an adjustable shim kit to make life easier..(Yukon Gear & Axle Super Carrier Shim Kit for Ford 7.5″, GM 7.5″, 8.2″ & 8.5)

The Addco rear sway-bar is on backorder, no worries I've got plenty of other things to work on
Attachments
P9151034.JPG
P9161036.JPG
P9161037.JPG
P9161038.JPG
P9161040.JPG
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
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Van Model Year: 2004
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Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » September 24th 2020, 5:40am

While waiting for the Diff parts I decided to pull the intake, I'm glad I did it has been leaking and the PO ran Stop Leak in it WTF.
The intake is back on and the top of the engine buttoned up but I didn't like the looks of the radiator so I yanked it out only to find the bottom of the core support looking like DomSan's did, so now the search is on for a suitable replacement core support and I can't find any new aftermarket so I'm looking for used...The AC compressor was seized so I ordered a new one from Rock-Auto along with a dryer/evaporator an AC flush kit and a new radiator....HooBoy this thing has got me spending money like a drunken sailor...how long before I need to join Astroholics ?
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
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Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby Leeann_93 » September 25th 2020, 10:43pm

backinabox wrote:how long before I need to join Astroholics ?



I believe the time is now.






:lol:
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Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby sixsix » Yesterday, 3:00am

backinabox wrote:how long before I need to join Astroholics ?

Haha ...

seems you already did - :shock:


... Haha
.

Well, after all... what would Banacek say ?... “It is only a matter of time before armed citizens, waiting or not for the police, take things into their own hands, fire on the rioters for personal and property prot. & end up hunted like dogs.”

.
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Location: Edgewood, Northern Ky.
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Mike
Van Model Year: 1992
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: LT W CPI - RWD 200K

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » Yesterday, 5:16pm

sixsix wrote:
backinabox wrote:how long before I need to join Astroholics ?

Haha ...

seems you already did - :shock:


... Haha


:handgestures-thumbup: I can't think of a better group to be part of
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Years of Membership: backinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full years
Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » Yesterday, 6:04pm

The top of the engine is just about done...new intake and valve cover gaskets, AC compressor and oil cooler lines, I cleaned up a-lot of rusty bits, the engine bay is looking better.
I'm going to replace the evaporator since the nut to the dryer gave such a hard time I twisted the tube coming out of the evap. before I realized it was happening (big wrench's and don't know my own strength) :banghead: ..
the alternator mount had an ear that appears to have been broken for some time so I dropped it off at my friends welding shop, he has rod specifically for die cast aluminum and hopefully he can save it, but if not there are plenty of used and new available...
The rear end is almost back together, the lash came out perfect right at .006...Yahoo it's a posi !... rear brakes are done with new backing plates... I can't stomach rusty parts, I'm going to clean up and paint the diff. cover today ...
Attachments
P9271055.JPG
P9271054.JPG
P9271053.JPG
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Years of Membership: backinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full years
Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

Re: 2004 Cargo WIP

Postby backinabox [OP] » Yesterday, 6:15pm

I have a plan for the the random surface rust popping up at various places on the undercarriage , I picked up a cheap blaster at Harbor Freight and I'll hit the areas with glass bead and treat them with Rust Reformer then spray the entire underside with rust inhibitor (Fluid Film)....unfortunately I don't have the facility or time to bring it to the level of my V8 S10 build
Attachments
P5200568.JPG
P2030665.JPG
P2030667.JPG
P5200563.JPG
2004 Astro Rwd Cargo work in progress
2009 Colorado ext. Z71 4x4 5.3 V8 hotrod - Daily driver
1978 G20 Shorty Van -SOLD
1998 Astro AWD Cargo - MagnaFlow exhaust,Volant Cold Intake,Hellwig rear sway bar, 93 SS454 rims -SOLD
Original Poster [OP]
backinabox
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Fueling (5/8 tank)
Years of Membership: backinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full yearsbackinabox has been a member for 12 full years
Posts: 63
Topics: 6
Joined: April 2008
Location: Massachusetts ( North East corner )
Gender: Male
Alias (AKA): Deano
Van Model Year: 2004
Van Make/Model: Chevrolet Astro
Extra Info: Cargo

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