When dealing with classics, it's sometimes hard, if not impossible, to find the vehicle of your dreams. Let's face it, there are less and less vintage trucks out there, and supply and demand is driving the cost skyward. This is the dilemma Joe Ogle of Bellair Motorsports was facing when looking for a '72 two-wheel-drive Chevy Blazer for his wife Mickey. The two-wheel-drive versions of these trucks were pretty rare to begin with and, nowadays, will cost you an arm and a leg, if the seller knows what he has. With the production numbers of four-wheel-drive units being much higher, Joe decided to take another route. He found a clean four-wheel-drive and set forth to convert it to two-wheel drive.

Before undertaking this somewhat daunting task, Joe sought advice from the pros at Early Classic Enterprises in Fresno, California. Stan at ECE explained, "There are many ways to achieve the desired result. It really depends on how much time and money you are willing to invest. In order to replicate a two-wheel-drive as closely as possible, a trailing-arm rear suspension must replace the leaf spring configuration. The transfer case and front suspension have to be removed to make room for a two-wheel-drive front crossmember, steering, and brakes. The motor must also move up and forward. This project is not for the faint at heart; it requires planning, fabricating, welding, and more than just a weekend."

Although not as valuable as an original two-wheel-drive, this Blazer will be everything the owner desires and very closely resemble a factory two-wheel-drive when completed. Follow along as we show you this Blazer's transformation.

What's In The Box?
Some of the major components purchased from Early Classic necessary to complete this conversion include a used 2WD disc-brake frontend and rearend, along with new lowering components and brake upgrades. If you didn't know, ECE has a big selection of used parts. So, if you can't find something, give ECE a call. The company might just have what you're looking for stashed away. Parts for the rear include ECE's extreme-drop center crossmember with heavy-duty trailing arms and rear air suspension kit. Joe decided to convert the Blazer to a five-lug setup, instead of retaining the six-lug stuff the 4x4 has. If you are on a tighter budget, ECE has other options to keep cost down, like a six-lug conversion rotor for the front.

Part One: The Rearend

Joe and the crew from ECE chose to start this project at the rear and work forward. The original leaf spring rearend must come out, because all factory two-wheel-drives featured a trailing-arm rear setup like the 1/2-ton trucks. If you are on a tighter budget, you could just install a flip kit and maybe a set of shackles to get the truck low, but we are not going to guarantee good ride quality doing it that way.

The Final Word
Once the driveshaft showed up and the five-spoke wheels were installed, Joe drove the truck to the nearest alignment shop to have the frontend adjusted to proper specs. With that, the Blazer is done and ready for his wife, Mickey, to cruise it. There was a lot of work that went into converting this Blazer, and we think it is worth it. Like we stated before, if you are on a tighter budget and can live without the rear air suspension, give the people at ECE a call, because they offer some cheaper options.

SOURCE
Early Classic Enterprises
www.earlyclassic.com
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