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Old 04-22-2024, 09:50 AM   #1
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Upgrades to my 2011 1500 Silverado

I have had my 2011 Silverado LTZ 5.3 2wd since 2015 and the first modification I made way back then was installing drop shackles on the rear to level the truck. Later that year my Mom & Dad gave us their old 1995 Coachmen Catalina 5th wheel. It was a very small camper (25' ~ 5500lbs) and the truck handled it very well for the next 4 years. After a leak got out of hand that camper was put out of commission.

Fast forward to April 2023 and we decided it was time to go back camping and we purchased the new JayFlight 267BHS. This unit is a good bit larger at 30' and ~ 6500lbs and I noticed just how much different a TT pulls vs. a 5th wheel. Rather than buying a larger truck in today's market I decided to upgrade the 1500.

I put the factory shackles back on the truck.
Tru-Cool 40K Trans. cooler on order.
Timbren SES rear kit on order.
Bilstein 5100 shocks (full set) on order.

I can't wait to get everything installed! We have a short trip planned in June and I think it will be a good test of the upgrades. We want to make some trips upstate SC and the terrain gets a lot more aggressive than I am used to.
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Old 04-22-2024, 04:37 PM   #2
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You may want to consider upgrading your transmission pan. Iím a retired Chevrolet partsman, the only reason I mentioned this is that I was fortunate enough to do business with some of the best shops in town. The shop I had rebuild my 1984 gmc 4x4 with a 700r4 trans told me that he wouldnít touch my transmission unless I bought this brand oil pan. You will pickup an additional quart of fluid and this pan is set up for a transmission temperature gauge. Heat will destroy a transmission. Having a temp gauge will give you a heads up before you burn it down. The pans a little pricey, but I didnít have any heat issues when I was towing. That 5.3 engine with a 4L60 transmission is a nice combination.
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1984 gmc k1500 4x4 s/w/b. s/b 350,700r4,373 diff,.restored and upgraded( retired - sold). 2022 Chevy Z-71 Trail Boss 4x4 crew cab s/w/b 6.2 gas a/t. 2018 hummingbird Baja 16mrb,Yamaha ef2400ishc inverter.
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Old 04-22-2024, 05:44 PM   #3
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I’ll definitely look into that. My 6L80 had to get a new torque converter a few years ago but it has been going strong since. The truck has a trans temp readout so I can see how hot it gets.

Thanks!
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Old 04-22-2024, 06:16 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by chops1sc View Post
Iíll definitely look into that. My 6L80 had to get a new torque converter a few years ago but it has been going strong since. The truck has a trans temp readout so I can see how hot it gets.

Thanks!
I guessed at your transmissionó 6 gears are better than 4. Have a great camping season.
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1984 gmc k1500 4x4 s/w/b. s/b 350,700r4,373 diff,.restored and upgraded( retired - sold). 2022 Chevy Z-71 Trail Boss 4x4 crew cab s/w/b 6.2 gas a/t. 2018 hummingbird Baja 16mrb,Yamaha ef2400ishc inverter.
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Old 04-23-2024, 06:26 AM   #5
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With the Tru-Cool transmission cooler youíll have no problems with overheating. I barely get up to normal operating temp in the summer with a 6 to 7000# trailer. I have a 2009 1500 with the 5.3 and 6L80.
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Old 04-23-2024, 07:11 AM   #6
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With the Tru-Cool transmission cooler youíll have no problems with overheating. I barely get up to normal operating temp in the summer with a 6 to 7000# trailer. I have a 2009 1500 with the 5.3 and 6L80.
That is what I'm hoping! On the highways the temps usually stay around 190 towing but as soon as I get into town it goes up to 215.
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Old 04-23-2024, 07:15 AM   #7
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Summer towing along I90 in Nebraska and near 100 degree outside temps and I see upper 180s. Normally I get 150 to 170s in milder temps.
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Old 04-23-2024, 07:17 AM   #8
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Be sure and watch videos on the Tru-Cool install it’s practically a factory fit with one slight alteration of one of the lines.
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