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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
This whole thread is liable to be slow and wordy, because I can be both, but I wanted to journal the evolution of my rig for myself more than anything. I've never done anything more than change the oil on a vehicle before, so this has already been a rewarding experience identifying things I'd like to do and making my first mods. Always happy to hear advice or suggestions. :)

I've got a few goals with it:
1) Keep it useful as a daily driver. This is my only vehicle and I have no garage, so that means most things are chosen to either remain on permanently or be removed in minutes by myself and lugged up the stairs to my 3rd floor apartment.
2) Make it capable of handling light offroading, forest service roads, river banks, etc. Potentially more but that's where we're starting. Camping, hiking, canoeing, scrambling... this is my vessel to the outdoors.
3) Remain tow capable! I move more often than I like, and towing a large UHaul was how I justified the purchase to myself.

1/18/20 | Signed the papers, took her home
Pacific Blue 2020 CCSB Z71 3.6L V6 4x4, bought used with 2k miles on the odometer. Leather seats, Bose audio, black bowties, and spray-in bed liner.

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Current update:
9/29/2020 | Suspension and wheels finally all worked out!

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Front: 2" Eibach RHA struts (Pro Truck leveling kit)
Rear: 1.5" Peak Suspension add-a-leaf w/Eibach Pro Truck rear shocks
Wheels/Tires: Falken Wildpeak AT3W 265/70r17 SLs on Method 701 17x8.5 et0 6x120s

Exterior
ZR2 Sliders
OEM Non-ZR2 skid plates
Datinfab shock skids
Air-dam delete
RokBlokz mud flaps
Pace Edwards UltraGroove tonneau w/Thule crossbars
Rhino Rack Vortex Aero 2500 roof rack
CravenSpeed Stubby Jr. antenna
Homemade rooftop awning

Interior
Datin Fabrication molle Panels
President Andy CB Radio w/Firestik 4' Antenna
RedHound Auto Sill Protectors

Thanks to all of you out there with your own awesome rigs for the ideas, inspiration, and help.
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
I wanted to have one post real quick documenting things so far. Haven't taken pics of everything like the console organizer but that's pretty easy to imagine ;)
2/2/20 - Air-dam delete
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2/15/20 - RokBlokz and Pace Edwards UltraGroove installed
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2/16/20 - Road trip up to Cheyenne to grab some ZR2 sliders, got home and got installed. Missing reinforcement brackets but too good of a deal to pass on.
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3/26/20 - OEM skids bolted on. Need to torque the bolts but I'm missing the right socket and will have to wait until this social distancing stuff ends.
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4/11/20 - DatinFab molle panels installed. Super easy install, love these things. First holes drilled in the truck! Also installed my Rhino Rack (no pictures at the time)
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4/17/20 - Stubby Jr. antenna swap, taking a trip to the folks' place in Montana in May to get my canoe, this should make it easier to load and unload.
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4/20/20 - Finished install of my CB, details to follow but she looks good with that antenna doesn't she?
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2019 Colorado ccsb, off road gm steps. (To cut down on seat edge wear)
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How many skid plates and what do they cover? Transmition?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
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Discussion Starter #5
As I mentioned before, got the CB set-up. 3D printed a custom antenna mount to get the clearance I needed for my coax above my t-slot rails. Printed a prototype in the pink PLA, but that would have melted in the sun so I attempted to do ABS instead. Print failed, as you can see, so I ordered some black PETG filament and that did the ticket! Super easy to print and while not quite as temp-resistant as ABS it should still more than hold up in the sun.

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I've since grounded the mount with a 10-gauge wire running from the mounting bolt. I then ran the coax down alongside the brake line and came up a grommet in the floor under the driver-side footwell before threading it through the console to my mount on the molle panel. Also moved my first aid kit to a molle pouch for fast access.

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Discussion Starter #6
It's a little thing, but I'm gearing up for a trip up to NW Montana at the end of next week to see my folks so I'm figuring out all the details. Figured out a cheap and temporary solution to keep my jerry can and water jug from bouncing around too much for the 1000 miles of road between here and there. Hopefully will be some dirt and gravel roads as well, but that's up to the land managers in Wyoming and Montana. My printed antenna mount also cracked, so I had to take the antenna off. Playing with ideas to reinforce it, but plastic may just not be able to take the flexing from all the antenna movement. :C

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Discussion Starter #7
Heading back home tomorrow, it's been a blissful week in northwest Montana but the real world beckons.

I followed a DIY awning thread I saw on OverlandBound but played with dimensions a little. I need a larger tarp and have some higher quality tent legs on the way but I'm pretty excited to whip this WIP out on the 1000 mile trip home.

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Nice thing about visiting the folks is my mother's a wizard with a needle and was able to put together a spur of the moment vinyl cover for it as I tried to figure out a plan for protecting it.

I'm sad to go, but she's ready to roll bright and early with my beat up old canoe out of storage again as the final "mod" for this adventure.

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And lastly, a little glimpse from the truck's first trip into the mountains. Mostly logging roads with a little fun in some puddles and snow.

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Sweet. Love the awning. I keep considering the batwing awning.

love western Montana, too. Beautiful mountains. Lots of great places for camping and hiking.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sweet. Love the awning. I keep considering the batwing awning.

love western Montana, too. Beautiful mountains. Lots of great places for camping and hiking.
Thanks! It's definitely not perfect, as someone already pointed out it may need some kind of central support for the tarp to prevent pooling, but I also just plan to lower one leg a little so I think with a larger/taut tarp it'll be fine. The batwings look SO cool but I was able to throw this together for about $100.

Western Montana is where it's at. I'm so incredibly lucky it's where my folks retired to. My brother and I got some rental property out there which doubles as our own get-away retreat. We've been pretty blessed (or spoiled?).
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Whelp, bit the bullet and ordered the Eibach lift kit with the rear add-a-leaf and the diff drop from Peak. Figured it's time I put on my big boy pants and gave this a whirl. I'm a little worried about the spring compression, but I hear the Eibach kit reuses OEM hardware so the choice is either compress it myself at the time of install or get the whole thing done at a shop. I'll see if the Datin shock skids I have work with the new rear shocks at that point, was kicking myself for not getting them on yet but it might actually have worked out better. My plan is the 2" selection in the front, I'm planning on a grille guard soon too but I don't think that will weigh it down enough to need the 2.7". Gonna stick with stock tires for now, but eventually want to move to some 265/70r17 Falken Wildpeaks for better grip in the mountains here.
 
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Whelp, bit the bullet and ordered the Eibach lift kit with the rear add-a-leaf and the diff drop from Peak. Figured it's time I put on my big boy pants and gave this a whirl. I'm a little worried about the spring compression, but I hear the Eibach kit reuses OEM hardware so the choice is either compress it myself at the time of install or get the whole thing done at a shop. I'll see if the Datin shock skids I have work with the new rear shocks at that point, was kicking myself for not getting them on yet but it might actually have worked out better. My plan is the 2" selection in the front, I'm planning on a grille guard soon too but I don't think that will weigh it down enough to need the 2.7". Gonna stick with stock tires for now, but eventually want to move to some 265/70r17 Falken Wildpeaks for better grip in the mountains here.
The shock skids will work and spring compression is a breeze as long as you use the proper tools, the kit is gonna look great!
 

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How're you liking those Datin Fab molle mounts in the cab? Been eyeballing them for my two radios as well. I just always hate putting holes in the interior but figured as long as I get one for both sides then why not :p
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The shock skids will work and spring compression is a breeze as long as you use the proper tools, the kit is gonna look great!
Thanks! It should get here sometime in the next week, and I'm itching to give it a whirl.

How're you liking those Datin Fab molle mounts in the cab? Been eyeballing them for my two radios as well. I just always hate putting holes in the interior but figured as long as I get one for both sides then why not :p
I love them! I think it'll depend on how you and your passenger sit with your legs though, they do protrude ever so slightly (obviously) so I found that with the weird way I let my leg lean on the center console there wasn't enough room for the radio on the driver's side. That said, I have a little pouch for my phone, a knife, and a flashlight that work well. On the passenger side I have my radio pretty far towards the seat so I can still use the glove box, but my first aid kit sits nicely behind it and still allows it to open. Big thing for me is that it means if I need the footwell space for me/passenger I can remove the radio in seconds, can't do that with a normal mount!. And same, these were my first holes drilled but the symmetry made it easier to stomach haha.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Busy couple weekends ahead of me! Need to find space to install the suspension and time for everything else (working lots of OT these days) but I'm chomping at the bit.

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Love the color! Which Thule setup did you go with over the tonneau? I'm looking for something similar
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Love the color! Which Thule setup did you go with over the tonneau? I'm looking for something similar
They're pretty specific to my set up, they're a partnership between Thule and Pace-Edwards specifically for their sliding tonneaus. I bought them second-hand with the cover so I don't know how compatibility compares to other T-slot rails systems: Thule Load Bar Kits for Pace-Edward Covers

I do know first hand that the nuts for Rhino Rack T-slots don't fit in my channels, so different systems definitely require different hardware...
 
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Discussion Starter #17
Got a DIY garage space reserved for this weekend, will finally get the lift in, as well as all the other suspension components. Grabbed some longer sway bar endlinks as well, might be overkill for 2" but is some relatively cheap peace of mind with the diff drop. Excited to finally get the Eibachs in, if a little nervous about possibly screwing up an expensive vehicle.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Wow, long time no update! It's been an adventure getting the suspension in. I got the front struts in about two months ago, but it took me way longer than I had hoped and so I ran out of garage time.

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Set at 2", seemed to pretty much perfectly level the truck. Didn't adjust headlights at that point because the add-a-leaf was always in the cards, but if I'd known I'd go so long before getting them in I'd have adjusted them out of courtesy. This worked great for running Mosquito Pass with the local Colorados in Colorado group meet up, although on the way down I did manage to dent the bottom bar of my Westin grille guard. :/ I don't know if it was straight before, but it's definitely slightly crooked now.

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This past weekend I finally got around to installing the add-a-leaf and rear Eibachs, as well as the Datinfab skids. The impetus to finally get it done was the acquisition of some Method 701 wheels with 265/70r17 Falkens. My plan had always been to wait for the stock tires to wear out in a few years, but I'm a sucker for a good deal and I'm so glad I jumped on it. <INSERT FENDER MEASUREMENTS HERE WHEN I GET HOME TONIGHT>. Add-a-leaf was a lot more difficult than anticipated, but I was able to do it in my apartment parking lot when the landlord wasn't looking. Dropping the axle an adequate amount with one bottle-jack and only two jack stands proved to be a bit of a challenge but we made it work.

The difference is striking and I'm so happy to have the tires/suspension exactly how I want them. I do need to do some trimming in both the front and rear of the wheel well, the 0mm offset looks amazing but is problematic for sure.

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I gave up on the custom CB mount and went with a basic stake hole tab that mostly fits under my cover rails, but I still need to get the wire route cleaned up so i'ts not hanging over the side. Don't need my ground wire anymore though, which is nice.

Next is to get my diff drop and end-links in, and finish my DIY roof top tent, which I'll post pictures and process of when finished. I have a few odds and ends to install like some RhinoRack grab handles I need to modify for my bed rails and light bars to sling under my roof rack. All in all, shaping up to be the off-roader/daily driver middle ground I'm looking for!

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2018 Colorado CCLB Z71 in Silver Ice Metallic
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The difference is striking and I'm so happy to have the tires/suspension exactly how I want them. I do need to do some trimming in both the front and rear of the wheel well, the 0mm offset looks amazing but is problematic for sure.

I gave up on the custom CB mount and went with a basic stake hole tab that mostly fits under my cover rails, but I still need to get the wire route cleaned up so i'ts not hanging over the side. Don't need my ground wire anymore though, which is nice.

Next is to get my diff drop and end-links in, and finish my DIY roof top tent, which I'll post pictures and process of when finished. I have a few odds and ends to install like some RhinoRack grab handles I need to modify for my bed rails and light bars to sling under my roof rack. All in all, shaping up to be the off-roader/daily driver middle ground I'm looking for!


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Hey Bumble...the rig looks awesome! I am getting my Eibach Explorer kit installed today and am hooking up some Toyo Open Country AT3's in 265/70 17 on the stock rims on Tuesday. You mentioned trimming in the front and back...where are you getting your rubbing? Since I am keeping the Stock Rims I am hoping to avoid the rubbing issues and even more hoping that I can keep my molded mudguards...
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hey Bumble...the rig looks awesome! I am getting my Eibach Explorer kit installed today and am hooking up some Toyo Open Country AT3's in 265/70 17 on the stock rims on Tuesday. You mentioned trimming in the front and back...where are you getting your rubbing? Since I am keeping the Stock Rims I am hoping to avoid the rubbing issues and even more hoping that I can keep my molded mudguards...
Hey thanks man! You'll love the kit, that's exactly what I'm running. I think with the stock wheels you'll have less of an issue than I'm having with the 0mm offset. I know a few people have said they're running 265/70r17s on OEM and they get the tiniest of rub on the frame at full lock, but not enough to bother them. For me, the frame is not getting touched, but I'm getting slight rubbing on the inner third of my mudflaps and a little bit on the center of the front fender liner.

I haven't trimmed yet, but my plan is to follow overpakd's guide from this thread to alleviate both issues and see if I can modify my flaps somehow to keep them on: Fender Trimming

I don't think you'll need to do any of that with stock wheels, but it looks pretty quick and easy if you do.
 
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