Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-18-2019, 04:10 PM   #1
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 32
Express 1500. Worth Building or wait for 2500/3500??

Hello,

I'm in search of another van and really like the GMC/Chevy vans. I found a 2013 AWD GMC van in good shape for 57k miles on a 5.3LS I like, but it's a 1500. I plan to do a build with a fold out bed, interior bike racks, heater, some basic cabinets and room for our Dometic fridge. I don't want to have water or any other onboard systems. On the exterior, I plan to do a roof rack for skis and kayaks and aftermarket bumpers. If I tow anything, it'd be a utility trailer.

Should I be worried about it being a half ton chassis opposed to a 3/4 or 1 ton?

Thanks for the input. Coming from a VW, a lot of this is new to me.
__________________

Djp087 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 05:26 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: San Clemente, CA
Posts: 521
You would have to see how much payload you have left after adding stuff. Most people find that after adding what you have mentioned, they only have 200 pounds left for people and dogs and stuff. I don't really know what happens if you go over the limit (certainly won't explode) but a 2500/3500 will be worth it if you are close.
__________________

Grampswrx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 07:55 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
BrianW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 2,962
Express 1500. Worth Building or wait for 2500/3500??

If you want a GM AWD van you’re pretty much stuck with a 1500, unless you get really lucky and find an older and very rare 2500 that someone ordered. I think all of the later model ones are 1500s. You could always upgrade the suspension for a higher weight rating.
BrianW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 08:10 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
86Scotty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: TN
Posts: 8,040
There is a huge thread on the Chevy AWD's on Expedition Portal in the van forum. Guys have build these things out heavily. It's a robust chassis and I wouldn't worry about building one out if you upgrade the suspension accordingly. The thread there is about 100 pages long. I tried to get all the way through it during the year or so I had one of these in my driveway and never finished. More info there than you'll ever need.

Rockbender (username, real name Josh) on here has a really nice homebuilt one. You can search the builds and see what he did. It's fully set up with a CCV top and a 50ish layout for a family of four.

__________________
Currently vanless. Weird.
86Scotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 08:11 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 32
The curb weight is around 5300 and GVWR is 7200, meaning I'd have 1900lb to play with. I'll have to add it up. Thanks for the idea, didn't think of it that way. We tend to pack pretty light with just essentials.

I do like the AWD van though. Much simpler in terms of needing parts, conversion (or lack of thereof), so I'm tempted.
Djp087 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 08:28 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
86Scotty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: TN
Posts: 8,040
I can assure you that millions of these are super extremely totally overloaded by virtually every contractor there ever was. I see them dragging *ss every day. If you need something to worry about then there you have it. Personally I would not worry.

Bring on the build and take lots of pics!

__________________
Currently vanless. Weird.
86Scotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2019, 09:26 PM   #7
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 32
86scotty thanks for the info and I kind of figured as much. I see them around town all the time with way too much stuff in them and for sale with over 200k on original drivetrains. If I end up getting it, I'll definitely start a build thread.
Djp087 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2019, 05:23 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: MO
Posts: 552
Garage
Agree with all above. I will say weight seems to add up quickly.
__________________
2008 GMC 3500 Quigley Weldtec 4x4 Savana SMB
2006 BMW HP2 Enduro
marret is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2019, 09:41 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
WhitH's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Eugene, Oregon
Posts: 779
A common upgrade is to replace the rear leaf packs with Suburban 2500 ones. It’ll add some lift and practical weight carrying ability. As has been said, check out Rockbenders build. The 1500 AWD is a great platform.
__________________
2015 Chevy Express 3500 Duramax
w/ Quigley 4x4 & Agile Fox shocks
Sold 2005 E350 Chateau
Quigley with Agile RIP, 6.0 PSD
WhitH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-19-2019, 12:30 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
86Scotty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: TN
Posts: 8,040
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhitH View Post
A common upgrade is to replace the rear leaf packs with Suburban 2500 ones. It’ll add some lift and practical weight carrying ability. As has been said, check out Rockbenders build. The 1500 AWD is a great platform.

Yep, and those leafs are super cheap new online.
__________________

__________________
Currently vanless. Weird.
86Scotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:50 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.