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Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

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Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Gibson6 [OP] » Apr 19 2020, 4:40pm

Hey all - wanted to start out a build thread for my 2011 1500 Z71 ext cab I got back in early 2019. I have done a good little bit since getting it almost a year ago and have lots more planned. I used to own a 1997 Ext cab Z71 with 250+ on the clock. Later I got a 2wd T*** for good gas mileage but always felt it was too small slow and weak. Once I totaled it I was on the hunt for another Z71 and don't think I will ever not own a Silverado again now!

Here it is at the dealer day I got her. 115 on the clock. No front tint. 4 bald unmatching tires.
1500 at dealership - March 2019.jpg


But it did have the original dealer sheet in the glove box.
1500 delership specs.jpg
1500 delership specs 2.jpg
1500 delership specs 3.jpg


First thing I had to do was get the front windows tinted and a stripe on the windshield. Makes a huge difference in the style and I also love the privacy of people not being able to see in. Tint is one thing I have never done myself... it is just so cheap and doubt I could do it better than the tint shop I have used.
Tint 3.2020.jpg


Next I had to do something about the four mismatched bald tires. I went with BFG KO2's - 275/75R/18's from Costco so that I could get the lifetime rotations and balancing. But, I regret that and will never buy from Costco or let them touch my truck again. I do not know if they cannot balance the tires or if they just take your keys for an hour and say they have but either way they have never done a successful balance for me. Here she is after the KO2 install. You can also see the stripe and tint better.
BFG 275 18 75R - 3.2019.jpg
First mod - Tinted fronts_Stripe_BFG KO2 275 75R 18 - at river.jpg


After driving her for a while the red neck sunroof (rear slider) went out. I think this was user error as I have never had a power redneck sunroof and once fixing it was clear the function of the assembly is prone to breaking. The gear and cable that move the window have no stop so if you hold the switch one way or the other too long after it is fully opened or closed they are still trying to close or open the window further. This caused the cable to slip out and fail. This was a relatively easy fix.
Rear sliding window fix 4.2019.jpg


Next I needed a toolbox bad...so I got this old BetterBuilt that gramps had sitting in the yard after taking it off his old 83 square. It does the job but doesnt lock. Looking to upgrade one day when I see the right one on craigslist.
Toolbox installed.jpg


up next - intake, steps, horns n more
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby GBSierraSLE » Apr 19 2020, 8:56pm

Nice find, good looking truck.
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'13 ECSB 4x4 5.3 6sp 3.42 G80 Z60 Z82 Bght new, 2" level, Michelin Dfndr LTX 275/60/20, DiabLew, Webasto Moonroof, Borla, Bedrug, Helwig, Rosen, Extang, Stone Liner, Raptor, Boss plow, SL1 LED 21,250 mi
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Gibson6 [OP] » Apr 20 2020, 12:02am

Next I wanted to add a cold air intake to let her breathe a little better. Went with KN blackhawk. I know all the opinions of cold air not doing much but I like the way it sounds and one day want to add some other key air pieces to make it more complete. Throttle body spacer, headers (maybe, need more research) exhaust, etc.
KN Blackhawk 2.jpg


It was about time for first oil change so I put a Futmoto valve on it... love these things, never had one fail and they make the oil change so easy.
Fumoto Valve install 11.2019.jpg


After this I had to do something about the rear speakers. I don't listen to a ton of music really mostly just braves radio or some old live jams but the original speakers were blown. Went with some JBL's and had to get the aftermarket mount to make em fit. another easy install that makes a big improvement.
JBL rear speakers 2 - 7.2019.jpg


I am a Napa corporate employee and we have occasional sales for fundraisers and such. I got these bully cowboy side steps for $10. Easy install here and I love them... great for stepping in and out... go figure... also got this great stool for gramps workshop
Bully step install 1.jpg
Bully step install 2.jpg
Bully step install 3.jpg


After this I had to do something about the weak horn and lights up front. Man this thing is a pain in the ass to get to the horns. Have to remove the whole grill and light assembly's. I went with PIAA bulbs up front along with PIAA horns for a little more umph. PIAA has never done me wrong they may be a little pricey but i have never been disappointed with their products.
PIAA Horns and light bulbs.jpg


Next, I needed to do something to give the dogs more surface area in the back seat. I love the ext cab because it is great for your stuff and fitting 8 inside when you absolutely need it. but most days the back seat is just for the dogs. I also have always loved the proportions of the ext cabs.
Here is the platform I built for the dogs and also is great just to keep stuff from going under the seat plus it protects my seat and acts as a great divider. I just cut some plywood screwed some 2x6's into it and covered it with an old seat cover. Love this simple cheap addition.
Dog platform.jpg


Last and most recently I switched the tires to have the white walls out... I know it is very minor but i love the subtle improvement plus it was the last damn time I went to costco for a balance and it came back worse than before. So i went to a local shop and asked they turn the whites out to make sure they remount and balance the tires. After this they felt great.
Silverado whitesout 3.jpg


Up next - im going to be adding rear Pro Comp shocks, Front Napa Premium strut assembly's, Napa Premium UCA's, KSB 2" front spacers, Motofab rear 1" spacer blocks. I like the way she sits and after some research it seems anything over 2" can get into angle issues with driveshafts so im steering clear of that. I don't do nearly as much offroading as I would like. Maybe a dozen or so trips to the deer stand, turkey plot, or campsite. But, would like to throw 35's on it one day, just think those proportions are great.
When I get to the suspension upgrades i am also doing some rust prevention with some POR-15 under the rear around the axle and bed... some surface rust there I want to get ahead of. Remaining parts should be in within a couple weeks. Here are the struts, UCA's and block kit.
Suspension parts.jpg
| 2011 LC9 Z71 4x4 | Diablew 93 Tune |
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| K&N Blackhawk | BFG KO2 | 32" Dump Club |
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Gibson6 [OP] » Apr 23 2020, 10:10pm

Okay all parts are in! now just waiting for a hot sunny day either this weekend or next... Also need to ride up to the NAPA and get a grease gun... might do the rear/rust proof this weekend and front end next since im down from driving 20miles a day to 20miles a month now...

Here is what I have -

NAPA Response Front Struts [RRA 181784] - $ 271.98
NAPA Suspension UCA-(Left) [NCP 2605507] - $ 149.99
NAPA Suspension UCA-(Right) [NCP 2605508] - $ 149.99
AC Delco Sway Bar Stabilizer Links [45G0002] - $ 10.81
MOOG Sway Bar Bushings [MOG-K200222] - $ 4.82
ProComp Rear Shocks [925543] - $ 85.07
ProComp Shock Boots [12100] - $ 15.61
Freedom Offroad Front 2" spacers [FO-G302F20AL] - $ 39
MotoFab Rear 1" spacer blocks and U Bolts [CH-1R] - $ 54.99
Por Rust Proof kit [POR-15] - $ 20
Suspension job parts.jpg
| 2011 LC9 Z71 4x4 | Diablew 93 Tune |
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| K&N Blackhawk | BFG KO2 | 32" Dump Club |
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby judsonlimited » Apr 23 2020, 10:24pm

$37k for a new truck, i miss those days.
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Gibson6 [OP] » Apr 23 2020, 10:32pm

lol! crazy how much of a steal that sounds like compared to new trucks today! I got her for $13,900 8 years and 115,000 miles later
| 2011 LC9 Z71 4x4 | Diablew 93 Tune |
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| K&N Blackhawk | BFG KO2 | 32" Dump Club |
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby nealinator » Apr 23 2020, 10:44pm

I'll gladly follow along this build. How many miles on the truck?

I did the same rear slider repair not long ago myself.

Those Napa UCA's seem pretty pricey. The Moog ones are a fair amout less. I assume you get your discount off that?
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Nealinator's 5.3L 4x4 Z71 All Terrain192,029 miles
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Chevrolado » Apr 23 2020, 10:57pm

Yep, following along on this too. Love to see people put great new fresh parts into "older" trucks. :D Keep em going!
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby Junior62 » Apr 23 2020, 11:23pm

Nice truck! Following...
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Re: Gibson6's 2011 Chevy 1500 5.3 Z71 Ext Cab build

Postby shakenfake » Apr 23 2020, 11:39pm

I love me an ice cold Modelo at the end of the day
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