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2003 Daily Driver

  #1  
Old 06-25-2014, 12:29 AM
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Default 2003 Daily Driver

Hi all, new here - first post.

I inherited a 2003 LS in gold with 107K miles on it. It was my wife's car and I was driving a 2012 Kia Optima, but I decided to let her have the newer car on a daily basis.

I wasn't too excited about making the swap, but for some stupid reason the Blazer is really starting to grow on me.

Mechanically it is very sound, my father-in-law is an excellent mechanic and maintained the truck for my wife - oil changes every 3K and so-forth. The paint looks good except for the body side moldings which barely have any paint on them. Interior is in very good condition and the a/c is ice cold.

I was looking into putting a small lift, and some bigger tires, but I'm feeling discouraged. The 2.5" kit from RC requires some cutting around the transfer case, that I'm unsure about. I read up on tightening the torsion bars and changing the shackles in the rear, but I'm concerned about alignment issues. If I do decide to take it on, I have access to a lift which is nice.

First thing I did was install a new radio, a single din JVC KD-X310BT and some new speakers in the front doors Kenwood KFC-1695PS which sound great and were cheap. The main reason I got the stereo was for the hands-free Bluetooth functionality. I got the radio and speakers from Crutchfield and the installation was a breeze, direct fit using the supplied kit with no mods. The stereo is pretty light and only about 4" deep so no back support needed. I did put a small spacer under the radio so that it would sit level on top of the little pocket on the single din kit. I installed the mic just below the gauge cluster. The Bluetooth works great for calling and the voice dialing, and paired with my android phone in a snap. There is a JVC app for android and it works great. You can play music from the phone through the Bluetooth or there is a USB port in the front that you can plug your phone directly into. You also have the option of plugging a flash drive right into the USB and can play mp3s through that as well. The sound quality playing MP3s through the Bluetooth is great.

Stuff that's been done:

My father in-law recently installed new calipers and rotors all the way around and replaced the O2 sensors (they went like a week apart). Oil and Filter just changed.

Stuff I've done:

I "repaired" a tear in the front valance toward the driver's side with some zip ties.

I decided to paint the body side moldings flat black. I primed/painted the one on the driver's door today and I'm very happy how it came out. I just masked it off, hit it with some 220 sandpaper, Rustoleum primer then flat black paint. I'll be doing the rest this week.

I ordered 4 tires today, Walmart had the Goodyear Wrangler Radials (P235/75R15 105S) on sale for 75 bucks apiece.

Stuff I will do:

Plasti-dip the wheels.
Finish painting the side moldings black
De-badge the whole truck.
Remove the cheesy painted red/black pin-striping
Black out the front grille.
Install a safari basket - I need the extra cargo space for vacation.
Build and mount a fishing rod holder to the safari basket (4" ABS black)
New rear door speakers
front seats could use a steam clean

I'll try and get some pics up here tomorrow.
 

Last edited by Kong1970; 06-25-2014 at 11:05 AM.
  #2  
Old 06-25-2014, 09:32 AM
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Welcome to the forum, and good luck on your build.
 
  #3  
Old 06-25-2014, 10:54 AM
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Here are some pics.







Painted Side Molding - much betterer...


Gave the valance some stitches ...




Radio was a nice fit - works great!


Bluetooth mic ... ready for another 100K miles
 
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Daily Driver-imag08692_zps3b2105e9.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08712_zps86d701ad.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08722_zpsc36ed0a4.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08662_zps101ba18b.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08852_zps1f657e85.jpg  

2003 Daily Driver-imag08742_zps1340a1eb.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08782_zps096961b9.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08762_zps3d186bf8.jpg  
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Old 06-25-2014, 11:02 AM
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Yesterday I used the window washer and the wipers wouldn't turn off. I searched the site and it looks like I need to fix some cold solder joint s on the wiper pulse board. Saw a great youtube vid on this fix.
 
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Old 06-25-2014, 01:39 PM
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as far as the lift goes, the only cutting is on the diff to install the drop bracket on one side. The instructions say to take the diff out then do it, but I think you'd be able to cut it with a sawzall and a long blade just by going in where the upper control arm mounts are. If I were you, my main concern about the kit wouldnt be cutting the diff. My biggest issue was getting my existing torsion keys unceased and out!
 
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Old 06-25-2014, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by El_Beautor View Post
Welcome to the forum, and good luck on your build.
Thanks for the welcome El Beautor.

Originally Posted by 01 Jimmy SLE
as far as the lift goes, the only cutting is on the diff to install the drop bracket on one side. The instructions say to take the diff out then do it, but I think you'd be able to cut it with a sawzall and a long blade just by going in where the upper control arm mounts are. If I were you, my main concern about the kit wouldnt be cutting the diff. My biggest issue was getting my existing torsion keys unceased and out!
Thanks for the tip 01 Jimmy, I'll look into it.
 
  #7  
Old 06-25-2014, 04:18 PM
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I did a fairly detailed how to thread on the RC lift, link is in my sig
 
  #8  
Old 06-30-2014, 10:13 AM
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Got the new tires on and finished painting the body side molding. I also Plasti-dipped the grill. I opened up the wiper pulse board and the housing was packed with red grease. I looked it over and couldn't really see any cold solder joints. I wiped up some of the grease and bent the 2 contacts up a bit so they would make solid contact and now the wipers are functioning fine. I hope it stays that way.

Small changes but I'm pretty happy with the way it looks ...





 
Attached Thumbnails 2003 Daily Driver-imag08952_zps0e419e40.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08982_zpsd1fa8840.jpg   2003 Daily Driver-imag08932_zpsd956c60e.jpg  
  #9  
Old 06-30-2014, 01:22 PM
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Looks good!
 
  #10  
Old 06-30-2014, 02:45 PM
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I like the blacked out front end on this color.
 

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