WOW! Brad I admire your ambition...I thought I was starting with a "diamond in the rough" from the looks of it you've got quite a challenge ahead of you. I hope you find the time to take photos of the journey!
Thanks for the pics!
Don't stand on it and the stock rear will hold up.
Get on it and the rear, drive shaft, and possibly the trans will all go.
Back in the 1980s, a group inside our local Classic Chevy club decided they all wanted to raise their cars up and part of this included putting the rear housing on the underside of the leaf springs. One of these members got on it one night showing off a little. the rear blew, the drive shaft twisted, and the trans case cracked in his car. He was working on the car one afternoon outside and the car leaned over and broke his back. In three places.
I know other members who did this to their cars, as long as they took it easy the stock rear lasted.
Sounds like fun!!! Here's a cheap idea for you, you can cut up a metal wheelbarrow to use for your recess in your firewall. Done right, everyone will think you formed it yourself. Good luck and post pix.
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