M1031 to M1028A1 Overland Build, Offroad Designs NP203/205, 4L80E Conversion

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Glockfan

Member
273
2
18
Location
Brigham City, Utah
Folks, it has been a good long while since I have interacted with you and I promise that I will post more pics as I get the time... My truck is back on the road after being out of commission for three months. We still have a few bugs (leaks) to address but I figured that I would post some pictures. Since moving from Georgia to Utah, I have embraced the "overland" concept. My son and I are going to hit the White Rim Trail in Canyonlands National Park in about 17 days (June 1-6, 2019). Let me attempt to outline what I have done to the truck since moving to Utah. The truck has been a work in progress and all of the frustrations are starting to pay off!

When I first moved here, priority number one was getting the steering working right. I installed ORD crossover steering with a 1.5" x .375 DOM tie rod and heavy duty ends. I installed all new PSC parts (pump, reservoir, steering box, hydraulic assist ram) and got rid of the king pin springs and Delrin bushings. I opted for the neoprene "cylinders" and Reid Racing bronze bushings.

Next, I decided to upgrade the anemic 1.97:1 low range NP205 by adding an ORD doubler. The NP203 range box added to the NP205 gives me closer to 4:1 low range and top speed in "low-low" is about 8 MPH. While doing the doubler, I decided to go ahead and get rid of the TH400 and I opted for the 4L80E. To save you a lot of hassle, there are three things that you need to buy that will make your 4L80E conversion simple. These are: The factory Delco Throttle Position Sensor (TPS) from a 1991 diesel truck. You remove your old vacuum TPS and install the new sensor and you are good to go. You need to buy a Winter's gated 4L80 cable shifter. It simply works. Stephen Watson at Offroad Designs recommended it and he was right. Money well spent. One of the most critical decisions that I made was deciding which transmission controller to use. Another member of this site suggested US Shift (Baumann Electronic Controls) and that is the company that I chose to go with and I am so glad that I did. Kevin at US Shift is simply awesome!

While the truck was "down", I had my fabricator build me an over the bed rack for my Tepui Rooftop Tent. I have the Autana 3 and it fits perfectly on my custom rack. I added a Tepui 6' awning. In true overland spirit, I bought an ARB Elements refrigerator and permanently mounted it in the bed. The fridge is designed to live 365 days a year in the elements and requires no special treatment to make it weatherproof. It was expensive but I think that it will be worth it for those desert outings. Cold drinks always available will be an overland luxury.

I have already purchased and plan to install a York engine driven air compressor. I have a brand new ARB RD166 sitting in the box for the front D60. I am not sure if I will have time to get the compressor and air locker installed before the trip but that is my goal.

Now, on to the pics (thank @sharecropper for convincing me to post)...

Tepui_Autana3_1.jpgslider.jpgtailgate.jpgTepui_Autana3_2.jpgTepui_Autana3_3.jpgTepui_Awning.jpg
 

CARMAN

Member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
605
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18
Location
Bristow, Va
Nice build! Dreaming of coming out your way one day. Really tired of the East Coast and crazy people. Just a long drive in this Beast.
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cruzer747

Active member
151
77
28
Location
California
Nice truck!! So as I am looking into the horizon on my own build (M1010) changing the transmission is a must. I have read a lot of people doing the 4l80e and getting frustrated that it made me lean towards having a bulletproof 700r4 built. The 700r4 has a little better spread on the gearing but I like knowing that if I were to go the 4l80e route that it is designed for this weight and if it were to fail I could get any 4l80e at this point and swap it in rather than need to have another one custom built. Aside from what you have shared are there any other threads that you would recommend for walkthroughs and parts lists? Thanks! I could do my own research again but would hate to go the wrong direction. The weight of the M1010 alone makes me want to use the heavier tranny.

-edit- I just found and will read the thread and will go back to doing homework"
[h=2]"The mythical CUCV 4L80E swap " [/h]
 
Last edited:

Keith_J

Active member
2,918
23
38
Location
Schertz TX
I am doing a 4L80 conversion of sorts. TCI 6x. Planning on same TPS and using Dakota Digital for ESS. Moving engine forward to keep TC fixed . My 1031 has functional and needed PTO generator and air compressor.
The 6X has a 2.98 first gear and splits 1 and 2 with the OD planetary to add two more speeds. So you have 4 speeds selectable plus two more automatic.
 

Glockfan

Member
273
2
18
Location
Brigham City, Utah
Adding to the thread... I did get my onboard air installed and functioning. This was important to me. I used quality components and will heavily depend on the system on the trail. I am adding a couple of pics and some videos of the system in use.

Compressor function (clutch was disengaged)

In addition to the ARB fridge, I added a solid mount for a small propane tank. I opted to weld the propane tank bracket in place to make sure it stays put on the trail. I also wanted to discourage "opportunists" and made sure that tools would be required to remove the $60 propane tank.

York 210.jpgYork 210 2.jpgalternator pulley.jpgMRAP tank 2.jpgPropane Tank.jpgelPito.jpg

More to come...
 

Glockfan

Member
273
2
18
Location
Brigham City, Utah
Took the truck out for a "shakedown" run this past weekend. I aired my tires down to about 10 psi which made for a real comfortable ride on the washboard backroads. Just prior to hitting the pavement, I aired all the tires back up to 32 psi. This took about 40 seconds per tire. I am pleased with the volume of air that the compressor produces. While out having fun, we used the awning and appreciated the shade it provided.

I installed a piece of powder coated steel plate on the back of the tailgate to convert the tailgate to a handy surface for cooking food. I will eventually be done with my "overland" rig but I am having fun with the build...

elPito_Awning.jpg

elPito_Tailgate.jpg
 

n8roro

Member
136
-1
16
Location
IL
That would be great. I have been about making some and seeing what you came up with would be awesome. What thickness steel and where you mounted etc. So many use round tube. But I dig square or rectangle like what you have.

In the onboard air vid I saw intake and supply, but what was the brass pipe coming up from the bottom? Is that the oil fill? I like your compressor mount it's very tidy. Does it also bolt to the power steering mount?

Thanks for posting your build it's very inspiring. I'm sure you'll have a blast with it this summer.
 

richingalveston

Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
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Location
galveston/Texas
did you have to bend the brake lines from the master cylinder. i would like to do the same compressor on my rig so post up details when you can. I got several other items on my list before i get to the air.
Thanks
rig looks good
Rich
 

0331king

New member
11
3
3
Location
Clarksville Tn
A friend of mine did. They are custom. I still need to paint them. Weather has been wet. I can take more pics if you are interested in seeing them.
Man you got a great set up! Two quick questions.... What suspension mods did you do and could you snap some pics of where you mounted your PSC reservoir? I’m getting ready to install my kit and I’m looking for ideas
 
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