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Old 01-22-2019, 03:05 PM   #1
smokehouse
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New to me 78 burb

This is my burb that i picked up this past fall for the second owner how basically changed his mind and i bought it off of him. super solid came from utah. It only has one spot on one of the rear wheel corners but not through just bubbled. the underside is mint. motor has been untouched so nothing unusual. what i love about it is that it's a trailering special with 3.73 rearend and it has the sm465. my plans are to put vortec heads on it and install holley sniper efi on it sometime this spring and just drive it for now and then order all the suspension parts later this summer to do a 4 inch drop front and rear. i just want to get rid of the gap between the tire and the fender nothing to crazy. I really don't want to do a rear flip because i still want to tow with it. I have really enjoyed the 4 speed i don't have to really worry about it going out on me. i enjoy driving older stuff more than new stuff anyways.

I've been an aircooled vw guy for over 20 years now so this is a different thing for me. I have realized that it's alot cheaper that vw's and part are alot cheaper not sure about the quality of parts yet but i guess we will find out.
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Old 01-22-2019, 05:29 PM   #2
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Nice rig!
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Old 01-22-2019, 11:55 PM   #3
swissarmychainsaw
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Awesome! Post more pictures.

*I have found that just opening the picture and saving it can "make it turn right side up"

You are going to love the Burb.
What cracks me up is I can go to nearly any parts store and they have stuff in stock and it's dirt cheap.
*Alternator - in stock. $25. How can that even be?

Replace all the fluids, and go over it, grease the wheel bearings and stuff.

Congrats on the new rig!
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Old 01-23-2019, 01:35 PM   #4
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Re: New to me 78 burb

welcome to the board .... and nice burb
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Old 01-23-2019, 02:47 PM   #5
smokehouse
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Re: New to me 78 burb

i'll try and get more pics this weekend when the sun comes out it's been raining here for awhile. I noticed that for parts too. brakes are cheap fuel pumps, water pumps, oil pumps cams and piston they are all dirt cheap. a good cam for my vw is like 100 plus another 50 for lifters. Piston sets not stock are like 200. suspension stuff is way cheaper that vw too specially to lower. lowering a bus is expensive vs an old c10.

I need to get a motor pic because this thing is untouched except the og owner tried to convert the AC over to 134a and locked the compressor up so i'll have to get a new one of those, but other than that this thing is amazing. I'll be asking a bunch of questions because this is all new to me. I think i'm going to enjoy building this thing up for my daily.

What's a good manual that i need to buy so i can read up on this thing? not cheap but a good manual.
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Old 01-23-2019, 03:27 PM   #6
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Quote:
Originally Posted by smokehouse View Post
What's a good manual that i need to buy so i can read up on this thing? not cheap but a good manual.
RockAuto sells factory reprints, but the quality is not as good as the original gm ones (pages fell out of mine). For $50 its still a good deal (and one of the more expensive items!)
There or ebay.
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Old 01-28-2019, 12:53 AM   #7
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Congrat’s for finding such a solid Burb! I will be following along for any updates.
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Old 01-28-2019, 01:19 AM   #8
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Nice...dont see many manual burbs....you might want to do some research before you commit to a sniper....most dont have much good to say about it...
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Old 01-28-2019, 02:51 PM   #9
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Well i do live in the town that makes them and i know a sales guy that works there and said he would give me a discount. And a guy here at work knows an engineer that works there too and said he would put in on for a case of beer for me. I'm hoping if i run into problems i will just have to call him up and he will come over and see what the problem is.

I would loved maybe an ls swap but with all my research it doesn't look that cheap to do the way i want to do it. I just can't take a junkyard motor with 250K and stick it in there and call it done and drive this thing daily and go to Florida on vacations . i just can't do it.

it's hard to beat a 350 with water pumps, oil pumps, and alternators are like 30$ or so they are not that cheap for an ls.
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Old 01-28-2019, 05:41 PM   #10
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Im betting the town that makes them is on the other side of the world... haha...
I know my new Holley intake had made in China on it.....

Not trying to change your mind ..but the LS in my opinion will outlive most any sb....my 99 had 285k on it when i sold it 6yrs ago...the guy that bought it is still driving it... all I ever did was change the waterpump...other than that I never touched it...if your getting a discount and help on the sniper then good for you...hope it works out....but read the issues that people have had and be sure to ask questions....
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Old 01-29-2019, 02:38 PM   #11
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I'm still up in the air about the efi. I know i'm going to do it i just don't know which one yet because modern gas doesn't like carbs that much. I have to put "real" gas in my vw all the time but their tank is less than 10 gallons. This burb has a 40 gallon tank and "real" gas isn't cheap.

Here's the pic of the 4 speed. I love driving this thing. I don't have to worry that much about it going out on me specially towing. I had to put a new tranny in my 2011 chevy truck a couple years ago and I was just tow baring a bug 5 hours away. I had to have my truck towed and i drove the bug back home after a car show. I'm so disappointed in newer trucks.
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:59 AM   #12
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Tax money is coming soon and as my wife says we need to knock the ugly off of it. I'm going to order some 20" torq thrust wheels tires 255/50/20 all the way around to make them the same because this truck is a drive just not for the weekends. That way i will be able to rotate tires. I would like to get rid of the 4 inch gap between the tire and the fender so i was thinking of a 4.5 inch drop in the front which is easy along with putting in some new control arm bushings and tierods and balljoints. My real question is the rear not totally sure how you lower the rear of a burb they are a little different than a truck the frame is different and the hanger is different. I don't know if a shackle hanger combo will work on it or not along with pulling several leaves out because it has like 8. i really don't want to flip because i'm still going to tow with the burb because that is the point. If anyone has any pointers feel free to shoot them my way. I'm going to be ordering this stuff soon.
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Old 02-28-2019, 06:25 AM   #13
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Re: New to me 78 burb

To each his own, but the last thing I'd do is replace the factory wheels. I'd invest in good tires and quality shocks. Then buy a good rotary from Griots and make that original paint pop.

Wait....I see your plans to drop. Then maybe some of the 22" rims that look like rally wheels in white. Good compromise. I just think the chrome rims look out of place.

Again, I'm just a chirping bird, don't mind me.

Last edited by buffydores; 02-28-2019 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 03-04-2019, 02:37 PM   #14
smokehouse
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I don't want slammed i just want lowered. I'm looking at the 20" grey torq thrusts not the chrome that would be a little much but i like the grey. I'm going to keep these as winter wheels. When i bought this burb it came with brand new cooper tires. It's a good ole truck that just needs to go through. I'm enjoying that everything is so much cheaper than my vw even to lower it's so much cheaper. The whole truck can be lowered for around 500$. A vw bus that doesn't even get you to lower the front end. Here is a pic of kinda what i'm looking for.
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Old 03-05-2019, 09:22 AM   #15
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Those wheels will look good on the Burb. They are a great design.
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Old 03-09-2019, 09:48 PM   #16
James Lamb
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I know exactly what you mean about the gap above the tires.When I bought my 89 Suburban the gap was so large it made the tires seem proportionally small - like they were go cart tires. I could stick my head completely into the fender well and turn my head around with the tires in place. That's a great way to get dirt in your eye, by the way.

Mine is a 4 x 4, so I filled up the space by going to 31" tires. I got about 2 inches of free lift and still have plenty of room inside the fender. I have never had the tires scrub. I think I could run 33" tires and still be OK. Have not noticed any issues with wheel bearings in about 150,000 miles of driving since larger tires.

I recently bought some stock springs from General Spring - cheap, come with bushings already installed, and really helped the ride and saggy rear. Most of these trucks that have not had a spring refresh tend to ride noise pointing up in the air, which takes weight off the front wheels and makes them feel squirelly on the highway. Good shocks go a long way towards getting rid of the body roll, which also makes them seem unstable on the road.

Another option for the engine if you plan to tow. Rebuild the 350 as a 383 stroker. I just did this with mine. The entire balanced rotating assembly was less than $1000. Only mod to make is grind a bit of the block away so the crank journals don't hit. Long story, my 350 was pretty new, but thought I had a problem. Tore the engine apart only to realize no problem there. Decided while I had it apart to rebuild as a 383. Used same block, heads, carb, cam, just changed out crank connecting rods and pistons. My fuel economy went from 13 mpg to 15 mpg. I think this is due to it having so much torque it stays in overdrive more of the time instead of downshifting at every rise.

Would be great for towing.

Not sure I have ever actually seen a square body with a manual. I tried to find one when I bought mine. That's pretty cool.
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Old 03-20-2019, 01:52 PM   #17
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Ordered these the other day for the brake job. I would like to spring for the wilwood calipers in the front if i can talk my wife into them. I've already ordered shoes and cyl. for the rear. I'll have to see which master cyl and booster i want to go with. I believe what I have is the 11" booster. When i bleed the brakes i wonder how i bleed the brake controller because it has brake fluid going to it. I've also ordered the poly bushings for the control arms. I'm just trying to gather everything up so when i'm ready i can do it all at one time. I'm debating wither to bag the front or not. i don't want to go up and down all day i just want to get that perfect stance that i want. i would hate to order the wrong springs and still have that gap that i hate. this way i can set the bag exactly were i want it and just leave it at that.
On the back i was thinking a flip kit with a raised hanger not a lowered hanger so that would help with the rear being lower than the front. I will at least have helper bags in the rear so when i'm towing. But i'm still debating on the front end part.
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:55 PM   #18
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I got my new wheels on last night i am stoked to get this thing lowered in the next couple of weeks. I have just been gathering parts so when i'm ready i can put it all on at one time. There's just to much air gap in the front for me. the ride is so much better than those other stock tires that were on it. fronts are 245/40/20 and rear is 275/45/20.
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Old 05-07-2019, 04:58 PM   #19
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Nice Burb, and good choice of rim design.

I think I got those same ones in 17's for my Camaro project
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Old 05-16-2019, 01:42 PM   #20
smokehouse
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I've been driving this burb with the new tire and wheel combo for that last couple weeks and i think i'm getting a little bit better mpg out of them.
I ordered my front suspension and my front airbags going to try and take the front apart this weekend to start on the lowering job.
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Old 05-24-2019, 01:47 PM   #21
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Used the ole burb to get gravel for my garage yesterday pulled like a champ. sm465 and 3.73 work so good together.
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Old 06-04-2019, 01:50 PM   #22
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Re: New to me 78 burb

So i'm about finished with the front half of my burb. i still have a few things to paint and put together but i couldn't help but put the rotors on it to see what it looks like laid out. i installed cpp drop spindles and front bags on the burb and i just have them hooked up to separate Schroeder valves for now to make it simple. These are pics of it laid out with no air or very little air of forgot to take a pic of it at drive height. i have to finish installing the tierods and brakes up front and hope to start on the rear this weekend, but i'm just pulling leaves and installing drop shackles along with air over leaf in the rear for now. we have a major car show coming up next weekend and i really want to take it out there or to the hotel where they put on a nice car show on friday night usually. oh and i forgot to cut the bump stops off i have to do that too.
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Old 06-13-2019, 02:01 PM   #23
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Re: New to me 78 burb

Awesome rig and great job of tastefully modifying it! Love it!!
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:42 AM   #24
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Re: New to me 78 burb

thanks i try not to get to crazy. i try not to do anything that can't be undone and put back to stock that comes from my vw stuff that i do. lowered nice motor but looks stock everywhere else. I think it turned out very well i was impressed that all i did was pull 3 leaves and got that low in the rear i think i can still do some light towing before i get the rear AOL. i still want to use my truck not just drive it. i'll try and buff it out tomorrow and try to figure out where the front bags are leaking out just a little.

i drove it to work today was amazing.
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Old 06-20-2019, 08:01 AM   #25
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Re: New to me 78 burb

I love the big tow mirrors. Feels right.
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