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Stacy Davids “Knucklebuster”

Stacy Davids “Knucklebuster”

Stacy Installs a DJM Suspension Drop Kit on a 1973 Chevy C-10

69 Responses to Stacy Davids “Knucklebuster”

  1. Hi. I bought a c10 from A guy who lowered it substantially but he never told me what parts he used or what the drop was… control arms are factory and it looks to have a flip kit on the back. Is there a way for me to figure out how low of a drop I have? I will be changing top and lower arms so curious what spindles I should get or if the ones I have will still work considering the arms will also drop the front end. Any help is GREATLY appreciated…Thanks.

    • Brandon,

      Since the control arms are factory, the drop came from the spindle or coil springs or both. If the truck is lowered alot and can be aligned to factory specs then you probably have drop spindles and maybe mild drop coils. if it is lowered alot and you CAN’T align to factory specs then you probably have cut or bad coil springs. I can’t tell from here what your dealing with but if you use factory spindles and coil springs you can use DJM control arms to lower and get new bushings and ball joints and still be able to align the front end properly. Are you able to get a good alignment now?


      • I’ve figured out it was lowered by spring.. the truck drives pretty straight so it is aligned with no overly worn tires…tho I have about 2 inches of spacers on the top left and right control arms… Putting the kit djm2456 5/5ltd on the truck will this eliminate the need for spacers andwill i need new spindles or will the factory give me an even drop to match the back flip kit.?

        • Brandon,

          Sounds like the coil springs are the cause of all those spacers. Using the DJM2456-5/5ltd should help in getting rid of most of those spacers while keeping you in alignment and providing a great ride. I am assuming you are running with the factory spindles and if you are you’ll have no issues with the lowering kit. Good luck and consider maybe photographing your upgrade and we can put together a story on your C10. It’s good for you and other guys could benefit from what you learn along the way!

          Let Me Know!

  2. I have a 86 c10 and have been looking at the 4/6 drop and the 3/5 but I have longtube headers and I’m afraid they will scrap a lot with a 4/6 drop. Most of the Parts underneath the truck are rusted and need replaced so should I buy the spindle kit/ flip kit or the control arms/flip kit? Thanks

    • Taylor,

      There isn’t a 4/6 kit for your 86 C-10, you can choose a 5/5 or a 3/5, however with your headers I would only consider the 3/5 kits. Regarding which way to lower, the Calmax Control Arms kits will give you new bushings and ball joints that sound like to need to replace anyway and lower the front 3 inches. Spindles will do the same lowering but you’re still using your old bushings and ball joints. Here is a link to the parts you need!

      Good Luck!

    • Tom,

      I have not been able to find anyone who knows the part numbers for that SSBrake kit Stacey used. It was shot several years ago and the folks involved at Stylin are no longer there. You should call SSBrakes and tell them what you have and what you want to do, referring to the “Knucklebuster” video. They would know best what you should use.


    • Richard,

      Thanks for asking about Stacy Davids Knucklebuster videos! He used the following parts to customize that Chevy! Front CA2356L-3, and rear HS1120-4. Just click on them to see more! Or a complete kit here. Don’t forget about shocks. Thanks again!!


  3. Great video! Wish there were more on the old trucks. With the install of the longer shackles in the rear, was the bed rail (under the bed) required to be trimmed just above the shackle? I have seen other manufacturers shackles that do require the surgery. I really like the way Stacey dropped the Knucklebuster. My truck is a very stock 87 R10 at the moment and I would like to convert it back if I sell it in the far future. I’m sure these old truck will be more valuable soon.

    • Rick,

      You are right about having to perform “surgery” on some of the Chevy’s but that is mostly on the 88-98 platform. Haven’t heard of needing that operation on a 73-87 model.


  4. Do I need to have special shocks for this kit or can I use regular shocks that I buy from my auto parts store for my make and year of truck?

    • Peter,

      It’s not absolutely necessary to change shocks, however you have changed the travel in your rear suspension 4″ which puts the stock length at the very end of their stroke when compressed. They can become the “bump stop” for the rear end and simply don’t work as well at the end of the stroke as in the middle. If it’s in the budget you best to replace with the correct length shocks. If it’s not in the budget you can run the stock shocks, it’s just best performance to have the proper length. Hope this helps!


  5. Hi Mark,

    Thank you for all the information you post on this website, It is very helpful.

    I have a 1972 GMC half ton 2wd with leaf springs in the rear. I want to go as low as I can without having issues rubbing (stock wheels, stock inner fenders) I’m thinking 4/6 is where I want to be.. What is the best combination for the front? (Obviously a flip kit for the rear with a C-notch) Spindles/springs? A-arms/springs? A-arms/spindles? What are the pros and cons of each?

    Thanks in advance

    • Jared,

      On your C-10 deciding between arms or spindles can be tough. Your splitting some fine hair there, but the arms also get you new ball joints. bushings, and mounting shafts. Probably need to be replaced anyway! Don’t combine them though, you can use springs with either one but choose between a arm or a spindle. The rear is a flip kit that will get you 5″. It does not have a c-notch though, you don’t really need one because your frame is curved up around the axle. Here’s a link to the parts for your truck!


    • Andy,

      Sorry you told me you had a 5 on 5 pattern;( Here is what I know, the front of your van should be the same as a C-10/15 so the springs or spindles or control arms would work without issues. The rear end is a different story, we have not had much experience first hand with the full size van platform. We have talked to guys who have worked on vans and they have told us the leaf spring eye hangers (front leaf spring mount) is different from the pick up, so the part we make does not bolt up. The flip kit seems to lower more on a van than on a pick up, must be the thickness of the leaf spring pack. And we have mixed reviews on the shackle, sometimes it works without a problem other times it hit the gas filler tube. So there you go, Ive just made your life more difficult, sorry! But the front is no problem and the rear is an adventure but doable without having to rebuild the van. Let me know what you do and send some pictures, there are a lot of guys who would like to know how to lower these full size vans!


    • Andy

      Also how many lugs do you have? A five lug suspension indicates 1/2 ton parts, an 8 lug suspension is made from 1 ton parts.


  6. OK…I have 79 Chevy G20 van that I wanna put in the weeds. I’ve heard that the C10 truck parts are identical. I would just like to know the part numbers for the rear flip kit and front drop coils. 5/3 drop I would assume. Thanks so much!

  7. Hi, I have a gmc truck R1500 short bed , and i was looking in the lowering kit thats DJM offer but i was thinking to do 4.5” drop in the front and 6” drop in the back and i cant find any of my need in the website. Can you tell me how or what I should do to get this drop ! thanks again for the help 🙂

    • Nassr,

      Great question! To get that specific of a drop you will probably need to do some fine tuning of your suspension after you install a 3/5 kit as a base. Using the Calmax lower control arms will give you about 3.0 inches, there are no 1.5″ coil springs so install the 2″ drop coils with the arms and expect around a 5″ drop. If that is a little too much you can use the old “heater hose” trick to lift the front a little. The heater hose trick is simply buying a couple of feet of heater hose (the thick walled, reinforced hose that runs from the block though the firewall to the heater core under the dash) and cutting to length so you can make a spring shim. Do this by slicing the hose down the middle on one side to be able to slip it over the spring wire (on the bottom) and tape in place. This makes your coil spring about a half an inch longer, raising the front around 3/4″. But don’t do this until you see where you land by installing the arms and springs without it. On the rear a flip kit will give 5″ and you can add a 2″ drop shackle on the rear of the leaf and mounting it with the “inside” holes. That will only drop the rear another 1 inch instead of the designed 2 inches. I will say that at that ride height you may introduce some bottoming out of the suspension on bad roads but under normal driving you should be ok! You can find the parts here scroll to the bottom of the page to find a link to individual parts.

      Let me know how you do!


    • Hi Mark,

      I’ve done a lot of research and i found that i will need to do a C-notch in order to get 6” drop in the rear axle, So my question now, do I need C-notch to do 5” drop !

      thank you again Mark for the info.

      best regards
      Nasser H

      • Nasser,

        It depends on what truck your working on. And the c-notch doesn’t dictate lowering, it just gives you more suspension travel, which means a better ride! So what are you working on?


  8. What conversion kit did you use to convert the rear drum brakes into disc brakes. I have an ’82 GMC 1500 2WD with power disc in the front.

    • Chelsea,

      Stacy David used the SSBC brake conversion system for this project. For more info click here! Good Luck let us know what your doing!!


  9. I have done quite a bit of searching but never found a clear answer. Are the suspension components interchangeable between the third gen C-series and the third gen G-series vans?

    I’ve got a 1989 G20 that I’d love to get nice and low and it’d be great to find out I can just shop for C-series components instead of van-specific components (non-existent essentially).

    • Gaege,

      I don’t have a clear answer either. Our experience with using truck parts on vans is the front ends are usually the same, but the rear suspension is different enough that the truck parts don’t bolt on out of the box. You will probably have to be creative in the rear. let me know what you do and how it works so we can pass it on to others! Send a picture!!


  10. I was wanting to drop my 69 short bed GMC 3/5 what is the best application for this truck not a lot of people offer anything for the GMC.

    • Patrick,

      GMC & Chevy are almost interchangeable, except with your year! You probably have a coil spring rear end, if not you will have a narrow (2.25″) leaf spring. You can click here for the coil spring kits, or click here for the leaf spring kits! Good luck and let me know what you decide!


  11. I just installed the lower A-Arms and drop springs in front and axle flip in rear on a G20 shorty van and have to say it was a breeze…. some mods to make it all fit but nothing hard, your stuff rocks! Had to use my 2″ control arm shafts, man are those things hard to get out! The G-van is seriously low and gets all kinds of looks and comments, some of them good! lol… If you have a G-10 or G20 van and want it in the weeds this is the way to go!

      • David,

        Just want to confirm your working on a on an 8-lug 3/4 ton Chevy van? IF so we have a kit designed for the C20 pick up. Don’t have any hands on experience with a G20 but typically the front suspension parts are the same as a pick up, the rear hanger and shackle kit may not fit your G20. I can’t say for sure, but our experience with vans VS pick ups is the rear hangers for the pick up will not bolt up nicely on the van platform. You may have to do some modifications to get the rear down where you want. Here is a link to the C20 kits, look at your hangers to see if you think they might work for you.


  12. hello I have a 1981 Gmc Sierra Classic and I want the same setup that (Stacy Davids “Knucklebuster”) has. where can I order the parts and find out the pricing?

    • Ossie,

      As far as the suspension parts are concerned these are the parts Stacy used, part number DJM2356-3/4 is the right kit. The brakes and other upgrades check out Stacy’s web site here Good Luck!


  13. Hi my name is francisco and i have a 1981 blazer k5 and its a true 2wd im trien to do a full suspension on ot upper lower controll arms shocks ect. But am having a hard time finding parts for it will a c10 suspension work and also want to upgrade da brakes please give me a lead to were i can start looking will apreciate a responce..

    • Francisco,

      The front of your K5 2WD is the same as a C10, so all the front end parts to drop a C10 will work for you! Here is a link to Summit Racing regarding brake up grades. On the rear suspension, I know the hangers for the C10 will not work on your K5, or if you try the flip kit you will get about 7 inches of drop instead of 5 inches you would get on a C10. You will have to be creative on the rear!


  14. I have a 85 c10 2wd chevy with an axel flip kit I previously had a sway bar kit on it front and rear do they make a rear sway bar that fits on after axel is flipped or do they make a mod kit to make it fit please help

    • Frank,

      We do not make sway bars for the C-10, and I don’t have any pals to send you to. On the front you might be able to install without any problems, and on the rear you might be able to use hardware for a late model silverado rear bar to help you install after the flip kit. I am guessing here, but it gives you a place to start from. Good Luck!


  15. I would like to do the 3/4 drop on my 86 c-10 stepside but understand that you must notch the bed cross rail above the shackle for clearance unlike the fleetside which doesn’t need this done, is this so? I would of course be using the drop shackles and drop hangers in the rear.

    • Mark,

      I am not aware of having to notch a bed brace on C-10 stepside but if it is in the way then you would have to provide enough relief for the shackle to pivot. The bed mounts and braces have historically been mounted in different places depending on which factory the truck was assembled. So all that means that all trucks aren’t always the same so you may have to modify something your neighbor won’t. Should not be to much trouble if you need to!


  16. Hi, I´m from Monterrey, Nuevo León México. Your videos are excellents. and now I want to lower my mexican Chevrolet Cheyenne 1991 and I need the kit to do this. Can you help me? I saw your videos and i dont know if I need to buy spindles and disks too.. I was thinking to use 3″ front/ 4″ rear can you tell me what kit use?

    Thanks in advance.

    Héctor Herrera

    • Hector,

      If your Cheyenne is a standard cab pick up, and is the same as the US pick-ups, then your choices for drop kits can be found here. The DJM2555-3/4 (with control arms) would be a good choice for you, and replacing your shocks would optimize the ride! I am not sure which spindle (if you want to use spindles) would be the right one. If your truck is like the Cheyenne’s here in the states then use the applications on the site to guide you. (Note the spindles give you a 2″ drop and we do not have a 1″ spring). Good Luck and send us a picture from Nuevo Leon!


  17. Thanks for the videos they helped a lot and asume that the control arms are for the costly kit, and by the way my projects are a 94 suburban 295/50 all four corners and a 84 gmc step side running on 31/10/50/15 with with a axle flip in the rear just put the cab back on with brand new steel front end of the frame has been por-15 and the bed is still off for the rear end work

  18. Will the upper control arm work on a non dropped truck. I wanted to install coil over shocks through the center of the upper to connect to the lower arm. Has this ever been done by a customer? I have a 1968 C-10

    • David,

      Our upper arms will fit no problem, but the ball joint angles will not be optimum if you are at stock height. Also they are slightly longer than factory so if you don’t have any shims behind the mounting shafts to adjust the alignment you will induce positive camber which you would not be able to adjust out. I have not seen a coil over set up like you describe on a C-10, what are you trying to accomplish?


    • Mathew,

      Most of the time you don’t need to notch anything when using shackles. But, not all the bed braces are located in the same place and sometimes they get in the way of shackles or spring eye hangers! So if you have one that’s getting in your way go ahead and notch enough to give you clearance.


  19. I just installed the DJM 5/5 drop kit for the 1973-1987 C10’s. I have the kit that includes drop spindles, a shorter front coil, and a flip kit on the back. I also went ahead and got new Calmax Shocks as well. I installed a set of American Classic 3″ wide whitewall tires, a Billet Grille from LMC truck, and new lugnuts. I have got to say it has truly amazed me how well the truck rides and drives! Mississippi is known for it’s harsh roads but I have not experienced anything that has been just totally outrageous! This kit provided me with the perfect stance, front end alignment was a breeze, and the quality of the products is amazing! I will totally recommend this company and their complete kits to anyone I encounter trying to decide how to lower their truck! My truck rides pretty much the same as factory, looks killer with the wide whitewalls, and looks so great lowered, PLUS it’s a longbed! Thank you to DJM for having the items needed to drop it the RIGHT way the FIRST time! No second guessing with them!

  20. Great to see this through the process. That is the only reason I am missing cable 😉 But, in all seriousness, I’m wanting the same setup for my 81 Stepside, Just curious why they didn’t use the flip kit? I’m pretty much like that owner, and I don’t want to cut frame so please let me know and also what brakes were those? Thankyou, great quality looking products and I hear many good things on my Truck Forum!

  21. That was an excellent show, I can’t wait to get started. Two questions does changing the tire size throw the speedometer off and if so by how much? Also how did the truck drive after the modification? Thanks for the great show.

    • Hi Bob,

      When you deviate from the factory overall wheel and tire diameter the speedo and odometer change. It is possible to in some circumstances change gears to accommodate the wheels and tires. Check with a wheel and tire expert to get better information than I can give you on that!


  22. Very helpful video on replacing control arms. I have a 54 chevy 5 window that I’m swapping an S-10 frame into and need to get the front end down several inches. I think the control arms and shorter springs will do the job and still make it handle good. Thanks.

      • I am looking in to dropping my 1977 2wd short bed gmc sierra I wanted to know what is the lowest drop u guys supply with out having to cut my bed for a step notch under bed notch is ok trying to slam it

        • Miguel,

          You can go as far as a 5/5 drop without having to “c notch” the frame. Click here to see all the choices you have! All of these kits are “bolt on” kits without having to cut or modify your truck! Good Luck and send a picture!!


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