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So after some digging I found the build thread section. 


What we have here is my 2014 Crew Cab Z71 4WD short bed queen. Bought a few years back as my daily work truck to put my weekend warrior back in the garage. When I first snagged her she was lifted on 34s and by the first drive home I knew the tranny was blown. Worked out a deal with the dealer I bought it from and had a 100k warranty remain installed where they paid for half of T&M. Factory crap struts with spacers front to rear came on her for a "lift". Within a few months I installed ICON Stage 1 kit to give her that quality ride effect. Love me some ICON, ride was supple on and off the road with this kit. When I decided to let go of the weekend warrior to fund the wife's new ride and changed industry's I got the itch to go back to my roots and slam her. I know I wanted to follow the same concept I did with my last mini must haves.


Suspension must haves:

  • Adjustable Coil Overs up front
  • Adjustable emulsions in the rear (I went back and forth for months if this was needed on a full-size before realizing it was a MUST HAVE)
  • Control arms up front due to 4wd and limited spindle offerings 
  • Flip in the rear
  • 22x10 that sat flush if not almost flush and this go around the wheel set had to be SQUARE


After quite a bit of research I came up with the following mods, mind you not all at once


Mod weekend 1:

IHC 4/6 drop kit Front and Rear, dialed (according to my comparison from ground-to-fender measure on a 19' Z71) she sits right at 4/6 and within spec on alignment.

  • IHC 4" drop arms (Front)
  • Belltech 2-Way Adjustable Coilovers (Front)
  • IHC Axle Flip kit (Rear)
  • IHC 1" lowering shackle (Rear)
  • IHC drop shocks (Rear)

Wheels and Tires 22x10 square ET +0

  • Cosmis racing XT-206R (finish chips easily but they also clean up easily)
  • Lionhart 285/40/22 (Surprisingly nice ply and quieter than anticipated)


After the initial mod weekend truck sat with a Carolina Squat 🤮, the rear shocks had no ass in them and my measured adjustment on the coil overs were perfect however I did install per IHC instructions with the 1/2" spacers raising the front 1". Trucks rear was as soft as a yellow belly teenager, I would bottom out axle to frame and pumpkin to bed every where I went. This was not my experience on my first go around on a full-size (96' extended cab bow-tie w/ 2/4). I was able to load that rear end up with dirt bikes and motors all day long without issue, guess there was a leaf design change over a span of 18 years 🤣. After a week of banging down the freeway I pulled the trigger on IHC helper bag kit and QA-1 shocks within spec of the drop shocks from IHC (eye-to-eye extended and fully compressed). I made the mistake of purchasing Belltech adjustable drop shocks, these only work for 4" rear drops to my dismay 😔. I also noticed that the drop shackle in the OEM hanger configuration was rubbing at ride height, so purchased the shackle flip kit from IHC as well.


Mod weekend 2:

  • IHC Shackle Flip Kit (allows for cleaner travel of suspension, simply shoving lowering shackle onto system was rubbing frame)
  • IHC 1" drop shackles
  • IHC Firestone helper bag kit (Rear)
  • QA1 2-way adjustable emulsion shocks (Rear)
    • Designed and Machined custom bushings to accept the OEM bolts (Inventor and Xometry FTW)


Once I installed QA1's, shackle flip, helper bags, and removed and readjusted coil overs I got her squatted on all 4 corners EQUALLY. I rub in front occasionally on full lock to drivers only and over excessive dips in road mostly in front. I have bumped coil over adjustment up 2 clicks from factory on drivers and 1 on passenger. I have compression up 2 clicks from middle and run helper bags with 8-10lbs in them when bed is not loaded up. Rarely do I ever bottom out these days, usually if I have the truck loaded up with people to hit work lunch.


Sound System:

I upgraded the sound system at some point in time between ICON's and slamming. This has been an ongoing mod debacle on my end. Started by building a steel rack behind passenger seat to mount three Memphis amps. I was using 3 Memphis amps I had from my old truck build, however the front amp decided to start sending unwarranted signals to the speakers and the rear amp after about 3 years of sitting and 6 months of using decided to finally die after an overall 10 year party in 3 different rides😒. None the less the two AB amps were replaced with new Memphis hardware while the class D (knock on wood) keeps trucking along. Doors received focal 3-Ways up front and 2-ways in the rear. Class D memphis runs a sundown 10 under the passenger ina  semi-custom box, added some height to the magnet area to accept the depth of the sundown 10 that runs on 1ohm. Memphis feeds it something like 800 watts rms @ 1ohm. Oldy but faithful Pioneer double din is running the show after trying 2 other setups to use the stock head unit. I initially tried pioneers CAN module but making fine tune adjustments or simply turning off the sub for when the kiddo is in the truck was a painful operation. Switched to an AXXES CAN setup, access to this was great, all the adjustments were perfectly accessible, however my trucks CAN did not like this system, I was getting all sorts of weird can signals and issues throughout the truck that I finally ripped that out and sent it back after trying two different AXXES units.



2nd year into ownership finally replaced the factory grill with the OEM paint matched honeycomb and updated the fogs and headlights with RIGIDs and paint matched 14-15 style headlights. Also threw in TRLS HID bulbs while I was at it and TRLS rear assembly's as well. I am an avid mountain biker so finding an easier way to load up the bikes was a must, when the pand hit I pulled the trigger on the RIDE88 truck bed system as they were doing a 25% off on preorders. Best investment for a biker ever, so easy to load and lock the bikes up, only painful when I have to fully utilize the bed.



Stock 5.3, that is mostly clapped out, so I have not gone ham under the hood. Initial purchase was an air raid intake using the stock box as most factory units pull outside air vs "cold air" tech. So installed the AirRaid intake tube that ditches the sound deadening box and did a drop in oil filter. After much debate, about a years worth, I pulled the trigger on the MBRP side exit exhaust. I knew from the day I started the truck with it on that I absolutely HATED it but for some silly reason I left it on. Now I am in search of an OEM exhaust so I can throw this junk away and do an electric dump out later on down the road.  Eventually I will be swapping the 5.3 out for a LS1 or LS3 depending on what comes available next fall (waiting for prices to drop) and I will replace or rebuild the trans and will 100% replace the transfercase (culprit to my Chevy shakes when auto mode engaged) but first I need to finish my latest weekend warrior so I have a new daily while this ol'gurl is down.


More to come













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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

This project turned into crap salad as soon as I walked back into the garage yesterday.

Let’s see


-New caliper brackets in kit weren’t quite oem fit so they were binding with the pads

- tried to reuse old brackets, reamed new caliper mounting holes, find out after installing passenger that driver caliper bolt is seized

-buy more parts, of course I have to double check behind the clerks at Oreillys, almost gave me half the WHOLE order 

-Amazon shipment with SS lines didn show till 6pm.
-bleed system after reassembling for the 3rd time


What an absolute pewp show. What should have been a 3hr project started with a 2nd day at 3pm and did not end till 11pm. On a positive note though truck feels improved. Glides down the road much smoother, no more warped rotor vibration on and off the brake pedal, braking modulation has all the feelz.


So the what’s and what nots


Do not purchase:

AutoShack BRKPKG005294 Front Drilled and Slotted Front Brake rebuild kit. Better off piece mealing your own kit together


Do purchase:

Stoptech 950.66002 SS brake lines (FRONT)






Edited by Lowerdz964
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  • 4 months later...

Threw in some LED low beams. Amazon brand 25k lumens, 6k. Also threw in half of the updated LED ambers with resistors, other half show up tomorrow with new HU. Also Lookin for aftermarket or oem option to incorporate rear sway bar. What options exist for this chassis?






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  • 2 weeks later...

Finally pulled the trigger on HU I have been eyeing for 2 years now. Pioneer DMH-WC6600NEX with iDatalink Maestro RR2 interface, HRR GM3 T-Harness, and iDatalink pioneer specific harness. Only have 1 issue, rear view camera will not display. System will kick over via reverse input and manual function of HU but no display. Will need to call and trouble shoot with Maestro rep. Beyond that love the unit. Size and fitment worked well with the Scosche Double Din. Only took minor trimming to project unit out far enough to clear and dremel some of the bezel molding in areas that are not visible to end user. 


Also contemplating scooping up a stock 15 Tahoe rear sway bar kit from strut masters and installing. Going to pull some measures off my father in-laws hoe to see if it'll fit. If so I have some stock 1" square 3/16 wall rusting up in the garage to weld for mount points on axle. For under 100 bucks it'll be nice to control some of the body roll a little more. 







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