Ultimate K10 Build
The Ultimate K10. This was the first vehicle I ever owned. This thing was bone stock and beat up. It was purchased back in 2008. When I started driving I realized it needed a lot of work, so I bought a different truck and sold this one to my mechanic. Fast forward 10 years, and I see this thing at the same mechanic shop! Turns out, shortly after he bought it the 305 block cracked. So he rebuilt a 350 and swapped it in. And that's how I bought it! Same truck, just with a new heart.
It didn't take long for the tear down to commence. First thing on the list was a Fortify Offroad Coilover Kit. Here is a before picture of the crappy wheel travel that he stock leaf springs had, and some after pictures to show all the awesome wheel travel!
One of the best parts about this kit is that the factory inner fenders still fit along with all the factory parts like the jack and coolant overflow tank and battery tray.
The only part that is not standard on the Fortify Offroad kit is the engine crossbar. The reason for that is because there are too many different engine/carb/aircleaner setups! So i fabricated this one up using some interlocking tube clamps and some tubing. I was able to position it in a way that allowed me to have full access to remove the air cleaner to service the carburetor without having to remove the cross bar! Another hack is to build the crossbar with the full weight of the truck on its wheels. That way if you do ever have to remove it, there is no load on the cross bar.
Next up was to get this thing rolling on some new tires, so we picked up some new General Grabbers A/T's.
For the rear suspension we contacted Off Road Design and ordered a set of their rear custom springs along with a shackle flip kit and heavy duty shackle. For shocks, we used a Bilstein 8125 series 60mm 12" travel shock.
Now that the suspension and tires were dealt with, it was time to start building out the bed! A simple bed rack was fabricated to hold up the roof top tent.
Once the Tuff Stuff Ranger RTT Was mounted, it was time for the maiden voyage! Loaded up with cooler, spare parts and tools, and all the rest of our camping supplies, we were off! For this trip we were headed to Big Bear Mountain CA, and for one very good reason! This was during a heat wave in southern California. Temperatures were averaging 115*F. the 2 hour drive was brutal since this truck doesn't have AC, but it was all worth it once we got to the cooler temperature at the top of the mountain! It was a great weekend shredding trails and escaping the heat. The K10 handled amazingly well! zero body roll heading up and down the winding mountain road, and a great ride offroad. Everything worked flawlessly and everyone ad a great time.
After the trip it was back to work! The Ultimate K10 quickly became my go-to for daily activities. From running parts to my daily commute, the K10 was handling it all. It got even better when i scored a 1986 SnugTop camper shell!
This is how the truck stayed for about a year. Serving as a daily driver and general work truck. then everything changed when I scored some Hanneman fiberglass fenders for this thing. That sent the truck into a full makeover as we prepped for the 2019 King of the Hammers.
To mount the fenders, we had to build a new support for the core support, this also served as a new mounting point for the hood hinge, windshield wiper fluid, and headlight wiring harness. Another added bonus is that it takes 30 seconds to remove the fenders giving you better access to the engine bay.
On the drivers side we added an Artec Industries Battery tray for our Yellow Top Optima. We had to add some additional bracing due to the weight of the battery.
With the fenders mounted it was time for paint and body! Now, the body of the K10 was pretty hammered. We pounded out as many dents as we could but at the the end of the day, there will be more added later on! For the paint, we used Rapco Paints "686" CARC Tan out of the rattle can. The front grill and trim were painted satin black.
The factory headlights were dim and one was burnt out, so they were replaced with some new LED ones. These new headlights also have the turn signal integrated! The original plan was to move the amber light bars from the grill to where the factory turn signal was located, but we decided to leave them.
The old wheels and 35's were taken off and replaced with the 17" steel wheels and Toyo 37" tires from my K5.
With only a week before KOH, the K10 still needed a front bumper, rear axle swapped to a 14 bolt, and the graphics installed on the sides!
For the graphics, I wanted to do something different than the K5. My buddy Josh, had the idea to do some green sections.
With the new rear end swapped over, also stolen form the K5, and the new front bumper almost finished along with the decals, it was time to hit the lake bed!
The truck handled great! It was eating whoops and g outs and berms without even flinching. Even with the coolers, spare parts, tires, and camping gear.
Even the cold didn't slow it down!
Things got a little crazy when Steve from Fortify Offroad offered to trade some bypasses for the rear of the K10... I honestly wasn't expecting a difference in performance as we bolted in the Bilstein 9100 series 60mm 4 tube bypasses, but holy crap it REALY made a difference! So much so It was outrunning Steves beamed K5 in some whoop sections. Unfortunately the shock mount on the drivers side didnt like the new bump zones in the bypasses and promptly ripped itself from the frame. It took me a minute to figure out what was banging in the bed! Luckily we had a 100 amp flux core welder and a decent generator on hand, so we got to "Fixing"
We were able to fix it up enough to limp it accross the desert to Hammertown where BFG Garage was doing free repairs! We used some Barnes 4wd shock tabs as re-inforcements for the shock mount and burned them in using thier proper welder.
After hanging out Hammertown for a couple hours, it was time to head back to camp. On our way back, disaster struck. about 3 miles out side of hammer town, i was coming out of a steep, sandy wash and the rear driveline decided to leave me.
Luckily, I was able to remove the driveshaft, put the truck into 4x4, and with the help of Steve, Limp it the 10 miles back to camp. Man was that a long drive. Not wanting to break the front axle, we took it easy. making sure to pick the easier lines and trying to stay to the trails. The next morning at camp, I realized the ear broke off the driveshaft, thus, ending the trip for the K10. I still tried to limp it most of the way back home, but it was puking so much ATF, I didnt want to risk hurting the tranny.
But I was too late. When I put the truck back on the rack for the post trip inspection, I found the leak.
At some point the tailhousing on the transmission also decided it didn't want to be apart of my adventure anymore. So i got a new 700r4 and a new driveshaft and its all back together and good as new! Since then I have been daily driving the truck to my new shop location which is 50 miles one way, so easily 100 miles per day if not more. This truck still amazes me. it Handles on the street so well. it turns tight, and no body roll or roll steer, its super stable at speeds. As of right now, we are currently working on a production front tube bumper, rear plate and tube bumper, and rook racks for the these trucks so stay tuned for more!