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  1. #1
    Super Swamper
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    2018 Colorado Z71 diesel

    As you know, the H3 is being pampered by another.... here's the next
    How to build this thread?
    My most favorite truck, ever, was a 1989 SR5 extra cab 4x4 Toyota pickup with 4 cyl and 5 speed. It wasn't the fastest, but 300,000 plus miles and it was as dependable as a rock. Then I got a Tacoma that was a lemon, my dealing with Toyota turned me off the brand forever since. That said, the qualities of that SR5 were what every truck should have. Long life, great fuel economy, fun to drive.
    With me so far? My last rig was a 2008 Hummer H3 Alpha. V8 power, front/rear lockers, 35s, tight turning circle, I loved everything about it but the fuel economy. At the time, I could only have one tool, and it was perfect. It was also stone-cold reliable. 180,000 miles and they were not abusive miles but they were anything but easy. That said, it was quite capable. Winch, air compressor, sat nav, ability to haul 5 people.


    It was showing signs of age, so it was time to make it go. Hummer is no more, even if it were, I can't abide the fuel economy - the 5 cyl I owned before it was better, and acceptable, but in a DD, I need fuel economy. I have a FJ40 that gets 7 mpg but goes anywhere. I have a Suburban that is my camping rig (diesel) (see it's build on my Wanderers thread).




    Then GM came brought the 4 cyl diesel to America. More hp and torque then the Suburban with less then 1/2 the displacement and 1/2 the cylinders. It actually has greater payload then a 1/2 ton 4x4 Silverado (7200 v. 7700) - but more importantly, it's small. I can park it anywhere. I looked at the ZR2, but reduced fuel economy and payload just isn't what I needed.


    so this came home in February



    plans were straight forward. Basically the H3 without the locking differentials - other benefit is it's a pickup (which washes out far easier). To that end, winch bumper, reinstall the air compressors, the HAM radio, a bed box from DECKED, then eventually a rack. At this moment, a RTT is a no-go because I have a Mastiff named Buick who cannot climb ladders and is unconvinced I should be carrying his 185 lbs up and down a ladder. For that reason, the Suburban stays and carries the awning, stove, mastiff, etc... but eventually all that will be on the Colorado. It may get a lift mostly because I want wider, larger tires but at this moment I'm far more likely to maintain the lower ground clearance and come up with a fender-flare option.... but that's to be determined later.


    first upgrade was the stereo.... the non-bose system (and even to a lessor extent the bose system) has terrible bass (complete lack of).

    so a kicker was installed.... later finding out that their instructions are dead wrong about what wires to connect - so the bass didn't work until the AC was found to not work. One guess why it didn't work.... yeah, once Bellevue Chevrolet diagnosed after my admission about the wiring, the AC worked and the bass thumped (yay).

    that's the wrong way.... 2018 has a different wiring harness, fortunately, Everett Chevy and Bellevue both are really free with the wiring schematics so other then a bit annoying; it can be overcome
    a two inch level kit (adjustable)

    Then a winch-bumper

    it really is love/hate - I think it makes it look like an aardvark, however, it has grown on me because it gives it a function over form vibe - which, to me, is cool. Now the winch is installed
    and DECKED

    I like it, but why they didn't put hooks in the top is clearly something above my clearance level or need to know. Once you install it, you don't have hooks because those hooks in the bed are what hold the DECKED in place.


    Coming soon is the aforementioned rack. I have a tube bender and tube but time is not something I have right at the moment.
    Then also comes the HAM radio and remote control for the tailgate lock
    Once those are done, then I'll resolve my thoughts on the lift or fender cut outs.... the biggest issue (to guide thoughts) is the front axle should be about 2-3" forward so you can turn... cutting it apart and adding that distance is a non-starter (even though well within what I've done before) so I may take the easy way and put a 5" lift then 33s under it.


    Now my current thoughts on the truck, if it is a long living as my old SR5 - it will replace my favorite truck ever.... the fuel economy of this thing is fantastic - I'm a lead foot so I rarely get EPA numbers, but this one does. One thing that does get some 'getting used to' is the stall in the trans. You press the throttle and it seems to wait to move, however, if you watch the tach, you'll see the need get to 2200 and then you're off.... I can program it out, and probably will at some point. I also will probably delete the DEF because I don't have to smog it AND I plan on keeping this for a long time (last rig, the H3 was 10 years) - which means that it's likely I'll move somewhere that tests emissions.... if that's true, then having a 'new' system in place means saving some dollars... but we will see, I'm loathe to void the warranty for negligible benefit, not just that I really like the no diesel smell (whodathunkit?)
    This too shall pass
    on a tow truck

  2. #2
    El Diablo
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    Congrats. I test drove the ZR2 diesel and really liked it.

    Is that throttle delay about the transmission or the turbo? To me, it fell like I was waiting for the turbo to kick in to really get the truck moving. Or maybe we're talking two different things. I didn't notice a throttle lag in my limited test drive.

    I'm glad you put that tape on the fender with "35" on it. It can be difficult to remember the recommend PSI for the tires

  3. #3
    Super Swamper
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    Quote Originally Posted by alrock View Post
    Congrats. I test drove the ZR2 diesel and really liked it.

    Is that throttle delay about the transmission or the turbo? To me, it fell like I was waiting for the turbo to kick in to really get the truck moving. Or maybe we're talking two different things. I didn't notice a throttle lag in my limited test drive.

    I'm glad you put that tape on the fender with "35" on it. It can be difficult to remember the recommend PSI for the tires
    The throttle delay is mostly stall - that said, I think they can program it out... it's really no better or worse then stock H3 stuff.... but I do know someone who bitched enough about it that GM bought it back

    I have a wife and dogs, writing critical dimensions has become a habit borne of frustration
    This too shall pass
    on a tow truck

  4. #4
    "Like Nothing Else"
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    Have you tried the paint stick method that the full size guys do? Basically stick a spacer underneath the plastic box the gas pedal is mounted on to eliminate the delay. Not sure if it's the same on Colorado's but the Silverados have a lot of slack/compression right there.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
    -2009 H3 Alpha/Adv||SAS/SOA
    -2008 H3 Alpha-RIP

  5. #5
    All Terrain
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    Good looking truck. I test drove a few of them, love the look of the zr2 but figured if i'm spending 40+k on a pickup it better have more interior room and be able to haul a full sheet of plywood at least. You said mpg was one of your main factors with this rig but then want a lift, 35's, heavy winch bumper, and a cargo deck? Seems a bit of an odd route.
    06 H3 Adv - Great, another project.
    09 H3T Alpha/Adv- Sold

  6. #6
    Super Swamper
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    Quote Originally Posted by Traxx View Post
    Good looking truck. I test drove a few of them, love the look of the zr2 but figured if i'm spending 40+k on a pickup it better have more interior room and be able to haul a full sheet of plywood at least. You said mpg was one of your main factors with this rig but then want a lift, 35's, heavy winch bumper, and a cargo deck? Seems a bit of an odd route.
    and I'll still get mid-20s and have the ability to park in any parking garage....

    I had an H3, that's what it replaced. Of course, this is all my opinion so your mileage may vary. And you're welcome to your opinion. I loved my H3(s) and if this motor was in a H3, that would be the ultimate rig (and a manual transmission.... oh boy, that dream just might have become a bit damp).... but I didn't want a full size truck, I have several - so the idea of buying another full size is a non-starter for mileage, space, and use reasons. I don't need to haul plywood and when I do haul stuff that size, I use a Suburban (I have 3 of those). I do need to haul the occasional dirt bike and most certainly the (often) motor, transmission, rear end... etc. Having a cleanable space is really nice. I did miss the inside storage so the bed box was the nod to that capability - I'm not in love with the decked box, because it raises the bed floor, it's slick (to the point I may put non-skid on it), and it both covers all bed hooks and provides a grand total of zero... that said, I do like the roll out drawers that are weather proof.

    Eventually, it gets an overland style rack so I can haul 20' DOM tubes and stuff like that....

    Of course, if I could only have one vehicle.... I'd figure out how to make due with this pickup - that said, there were a lot of years where my only rig was a Square.
    Last edited by SuperBuickGuy; 06-05-2018 at 11:59 PM.
    This too shall pass
    on a tow truck


 

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