Dismiss Notice

Welcome To CK5!

Registering is free and easy! Hope to see you on the forums soon.

Score a FREE t-shirt and membership sticker when you sign up for a Premium Membership and choose the recurring plan.

engine rebuild kit for my 89 suburban, on a tight budget

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by muddysub, Sep 17, 2003.

  1. muddysub

    muddysub 1 ton suburban status Staff Member Moderator GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2001
    Posts:
    10,454
    Likes Received:
    493
    Location:
    my garage, Henderson, NV
    ok im really missin my suburban here in phoenix, i wanna get it down here so frickin bad it hurts. but the motor in it it probably just about shot. it goes through about 1.5qts of 15w40 a week, and gets about 8-10mpg with 4.10s and 36" TSLs. can i get just a basic rebuild kit (rings, bearings, gaskets, etc...) or what im thinkin is hopefully the bottom end is fine maybe a new set of rings. and a new set of heads, im thinkin all the damage is in the heads cuz my exhaust system fell off and everyone told me that i was gonna burn some valves and i thought id be ok. (so i drove around like this for about 8-10 months) but the performance and mileage and oil consumption went way downhill after a while. so im thinkin all the damage is in the heads and my bottom end is alright. (please please plase!!!) so how much would a decent set of heads end up costing me for my 89 tbi 350? /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif /forums/images/graemlins/1zhelp.gif
     
  2. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

    Joined:
    May 30, 2001
    Posts:
    17,669
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    IL, USA
    If budget is tight, get a good used motor and swap it in. That's what I have had to do thus far. I want to concentrate on other issues and do the motor last.

    I doubt your heads are your problem. Oil consumption is probably from the bottom end.

    PAW has cheap stuff if you are going to rebuild yourself.
     
  3. jpaitala

    jpaitala Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2003
    Posts:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Imatra, Finland
    I second that previous reply. Get a good used motor, much cheaper compared to get your old engine machined, new bearings, heads and so on and so on...
     
  4. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2001
    Posts:
    3,039
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Clinton, IA USA
    Northern Auto Parts has some pretty inexpensive rebuild kits. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  5. BayouBlazer88

    BayouBlazer88 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Posts:
    353
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Lafayette, LA
    what exactly is your budget? I don' know if you can afford this but a machine shop can build you a shortblock (new pistons, turned crank, complete machining) for around 500. they could probably rebuild your heads too but i don't know what they charge since I've never had it done before. I'd guess around 200 for porting and new seals, springs, and valves. Of course all of this is only possible if you can pull out the engine yourself (mechanics will charge a small fortune to replace an engine). Anyway, hope this helps.
     
  6. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,982
    Likes Received:
    191
    Location:
    Roy WA
    From my experience (and in my area, which is probably a fair amount higher than some others) a good head rebuild from a respected shop will be right around $300. This is EVERYTHING) flux, machine straight, clean, new valves, 3 angle valve job, new springs, make sure all springs are equal pressure. No porting included for that, and I can't recall if that included the screw in studs or not.

    Decent set of heads depends on what you want to do. Most everyone you talk to will say the TBI heads are garbage for performance use, although decent low end torque. I'd be willing to bet though that something along the lines of Vortec heads (aftermarkets with older bolt pattern would be ideal) would still produce much more power than spending time on the TBI heads.

    Lot of work involved with swapping heads though (money, time to think it out) so it really comes down to what you want. If the power was enough for you before, go for a completely stock rebuild. If it wasn't enough, forget your budget, and save up money/buy the parts to make real power as you can, and put it all together at one time.

    Every time I've tried to do something low-buck, something else always screws it up...block already bored too much, too much cylinder wear, broken head, etc. You budget $500, expect to spend $1000. /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif
     
  7. 88Silverado

    88Silverado 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2003
    Posts:
    2,664
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Quartz Hill, So. Cal
    I have done some Cheap rebuilds in my younger days.
    If you havnt trashed the motor, and the crank journals and cyl walls look good, I have suceeded with throwing in new bearings without cleaning up the crank and honed the cylindars and threw in cast rings and got another 70+K miles out of em. Depends what you want. Burning a valve will make it run bad but oil comsumption is either going to be bad valve guides or rings.

    I picked up a GM crate engine and at 30K miles would use a quart of oil every 75 miles and foul #1 & 2 plugs. The guides were shot. I put the old ferd "umbrella" seals on the valves and fixed it until I rebuilt it at 130K miles.

    You really need to determine whats bad, if the motor has lots of miles on it, dont just rebuild the heads..it will lead to bottom end failure not long after that. There are simple compression measurements you can do to determine if its the rings or the valve guides.

    Northern has a very good rebuild kit for a good price.
    Some machine shops have stock rebuilds laying around for reasonable prices too. Rebuilding your heads, as said, will cost $200-300. Its a crap-shoot. I have had success with cheap rebuilds and I have had to take them down 2-3 times afterwards due to other parts failing not long after.

    Not an easy choice, but $$$ is going to decide what you do.
     
  8. muddysub

    muddysub 1 ton suburban status Staff Member Moderator GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2001
    Posts:
    10,454
    Likes Received:
    493
    Location:
    my garage, Henderson, NV
    ill start lookin for a good used motor, my mom is talking about lettin me take the sub to PHX around x-mas, but it needs to stay cheap.
     
  9. blazinzuk

    blazinzuk Buzzbox voodoo Premium Member GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Posts:
    17,412
    Likes Received:
    3,799
    Location:
    Afton / Star Valley Wyoming
    Find a shop that will do a leakdown test on it ask local guys for a shop that isn't looking to rip you off. (I have a bad opionon of most auto shops) That will tell you what exactly it is if it is valves or rings. Anyone can rebuild a 350 get a 20 dollar book and do all the assembly yourself plus disassebling the heads and reasembly you will need calipers some plastigauge and a good set of feeler gauges. As as been said I have had good luck with the redneck rebuild put new bearings in it put cast iron rings in it after you hone the cylinders and go got about 75000 out of the last one I did and it ran strong the whole time /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     
  10. Seventy4Blazer

    Seventy4Blazer 3/4 ton status

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2001
    Posts:
    5,634
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Escondido, CA
    hey man, ethier you have a girl and go to school, or you have a truck and go to school. one or the other. NO PICK!

    /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gifGrant
     
  11. muddysub

    muddysub 1 ton suburban status Staff Member Moderator GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2001
    Posts:
    10,454
    Likes Received:
    493
    Location:
    my garage, Henderson, NV
    NO I WANT IT ALL DAMMIT!!!

    fortunetly my girl is a pretty cheap date, i dont mind spendin money on her but she doesnt ask for or want much really.
     
  12. SUBFAN

    SUBFAN 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2003
    Posts:
    2,334
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Davenport, Ia
    for NOW....... /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     

Share This Page