Longbed to Shortbed conversion

Discussion in 'Chevy C/K Truck Forum' started by bxander831, Aug 19, 2013.

  1. bxander831

    bxander831 New Member

    Recently bought a 1995 gmc sierra 1500 single cab fleetside longbed v8 350 5.7L.

    I REALLY wanted a shortbed stepside however, this truck was a government vehicle on a US Navy base in San Diego, Ca since the time it was new. It was never driven over 45 mph due to the speed limits on the base. It's been on base since new in 1995. Since it was owned by the government prior to me, I am the only name on the title, and it was a new record created for the truck. Not to mention this truck has 93,000 ORIGINAL MILES!!! It was a service truck so it has some dings and what not. But it came with a towing package and rhino bed liner and a leer camper.

    Given the story above, I'm sure it is obvious why I chose to purchase the truck even though it wasn't a shortbed stepside. It's difficult to find trucks like this one In that good of a condition .

    My biggest project with this truck will be converting it from a long bed fleet to a shortbed step. I am seeking help / advice or any resources available to make this process easy for me.

    Now I have seen a couple videos from LMC Truck : Stacey David's Gearz TV show : http://youtu.be/O9zy08qsahk

    However it is not detailed enough.

    I tried contacting local shops here in Sacramento, CA for a quote, but all of them either give me some off the wall quote or don't know how to do it.

    If you have any advice, help, resources, or know of a shop in the Northern Calfornia area that might be able to do this at a fair price, PLEASE LET ME KNOW!

  2. stchman

    stchman Active Member 2 Years 1000 Posts

    I would imagine that converting the longbed into a shortbed is going to cost far more than what you paid for the truck.
  3. McClintoc

    McClintoc ɹoʇɐɹǝpoɯ Staff Member 3 Years 1000 Posts

    This. And it seems like there would be some frame and/or drive shaft chopping that I personally wouldn't want to mess with.
  4. stchman

    stchman Active Member 2 Years 1000 Posts

    Let's not forget brake and fuel lines. I would just go find a Chevrolet or GMC stepside bed on say Craigslist and be done with it.
  5. tbplus10

    tbplus10 Epic Member Staff Member 5+ Years 5000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    I helped a friend do this conversion on a 1985 Chevy that had sentimental value, either way you choose to do the job is lots of work.
    Method 1, which is most recomended is to source a truck of the same body style/time period, preferably a wrecked short bed that took front end sheetmetal damage but not frame damage.
    Keep the bed then start swapping your parts on.
    Method 2 is to locate a short bed, then start measuring. If memory serves youll remove roughly 13" of the frame behind the cab and in front of the rear frame arch. Hopefully your a great welder with skills in perfectly aligining the frame section back together perfectly and the knowledge on how to weld the rails without introducing Hydrogen Embritlement to the frame metal,
    Alignment, correct frame length, and frame welding are the most important parts of this method.
    I wouldnt recomend this method if you plan on using the truck for towing later, also theres numerous methods to do "Butt end" eelds of the frame rails, each method has its own advantage.
    Good luck whichever route you take will be costly, keep in mind you wont increase the value of the truck by doing this mod and failure to do the job properly could drastically reduce the value of the truck or turn it into an ill handling rolling hazard.

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