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engine suggestions?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by bigbadchev84, Jan 13, 2006.

  1. bigbadchev84

    bigbadchev84 1/2 ton status

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    ok guys i have a guy that i work with that has a 1980 crewcab 1ton with a tired 350 and a 465/205 with 4.56s and about 32" tires, eventually he will be putting a 6" lift and 35s on it. he is wanting to replace the motor when his taxes come back, his budget is about $3000.00 he wants a new intake,carb, and radiator. He tows his new 27foot camp trailer with it regularly and says it dosent seem like it has any power in 4th gear. what would you guys suggest he does for an engine? he is worried that the 290hp gm crate motor wont be enough for him. please tell me what engine and why, thanks again
     
  2. b454rat

    b454rat 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    For $500 more he could havd a 468 BBC with over 500 horse, that will be enough to move it......:)
     
  3. BizeeB65

    BizeeB65 1/2 ton status

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    There are so many options.... You could go with a big block motor, or a nice 400SBC fuel injected... That would be my dream motor at this point cause I like a small block. Let us know what he goes with!
     
  4. bigbadchev84

    bigbadchev84 1/2 ton status

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    how feasible is a bigblock swap honestly? is it possible for a new bbc, exaust mods, pullies, brackets and whatever else is involved? i dont think he wants to find a donor truck and he is wanting a crate motor for sure and does not want to rebuild the current motor in the truck, he was talking about getting the crate motor, get it all dressed and just pull his truck into the shop and drop the new motor in and be on his way. would a 383 do good in this application? or a 330hp, what about the 87-up stock replacements? would that be any better than the 290hp if he bought the carb manifold for it?
     
  5. muscle

    muscle 1/2 ton status

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    IMO big block swap isnt worth it. on his budget get a nice 350 or 400 crate, drop her in and still have money for a few extras. especially with the gearing this would be sweet.
     
  6. 1977k5

    1977k5 3/4 ton status Vendor

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    There is no 400 crate motor. Plus I don't really think 400's beat a 383 anyway (go figure, check the sig). You will have to spend extra money on cooling upgrades because the 400 block has cooling problems. And the 2 boly main is stronger than the 4 bolt main due to some misengineering (i.e. the main bearing caps could become an issue). Plus you will need to drill steam holes in whatever heads you use (assuming you are replacing the heads, stock 400 heads are not very good). I think the best option is to rebuild the 350 with good heads + cam or buy one of the 383 kits (eagle/scat crank etc., check on ebay or google it).
     
  7. b454rat

    b454rat 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Havta disagree on the 400 thing. I had many 400s, and only one ever got hot. It was bored 060. and that was the only reason. I had a 406 in my 90 GMC with TBI, and I thought the gauge was wrong, cause it didn't move that much. Never got hot. Had one in my car before I got the 454, never had heating problems. Drilling steam holes in the head is no big deal, any machine shop can do that. I did that to TBI heads on the 90. No replacement for displacement. To each his own, but I would rather have a 400 than a 383. Guess that's why I have one just sitting, waiting to get built. The 468 that I have is ready to go. I have a new set of headers for a truck. The alt bracket is there, all you would have to do is mount the PS pump. Some how I hooked up the small block pump to a big block.
     
  8. k5rocker

    k5rocker Registered Member

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    I'm a diesel nut myself, but I think the best option for the money is just drop in a new 350. There are a bazillion options for crate engines and quality buildup specs for purpose-built engines is everywhere, and if you have ever tried to do a big-block swap (I have done several) I don't have to explain the unique hell of the experience, not to mention cost (way over $3k when done correctly and legally). Reality is, even a well built 350 will still pig on hills with any kind of load and it's hard to downshift to third in a 465 above 45mph, it will get 6-9mpg with the trailer, but drive patiently and think of how much fuel can be bought with the money saved vs. a big-block.
     
  9. spoolnaround

    spoolnaround 1/2 ton status

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  10. stayaway

    stayaway Registered Member

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    I also would do the 400 never had any problems with the 6 I have built :D but a bbc is the stuff have also built a few of them with awesome power
     
  11. hack500

    hack500 1/2 ton status

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    I say you can't beat displacement for towing. a nice TD 427 or a 454 or even a caddy :wink1: w/ a CR of 8.5 -> 9.5:1 would be good.
     
  12. u2slow

    u2slow 1/2 ton status

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    I wouldn't worry about the HP numbers at all for that weight of rig.

    Get the engine that with the highest torque numbers at the lowest rpm.

    IMO get a used 454 with all the bolt-ons from a wrecker. Drop $1k on it if you have to. Spend $2k on the rebuild.

    My Dad has the most pathetic 454 ever produced ('79 C20 crew, 205hp/335tq). It hauls an 11' camper - with either a 22' fishing boat behind, or flat-towing a 109 IIA Landrover. Original engine at 110,000km and TH400 number two ;)
     
  13. muscle

    muscle 1/2 ton status

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    The 400 is definately alot better choice if you come across one. They are getting harder to find and are such a sweet motor. Mine never overheated and was lucky to find, when I pulled her and opened her up for a rebuild, she was untouched before. (ahhhhh a virgin 400....:D )

    Me too... 400 any day before a 383!

    And Im not saying the big block motors suck either. Just that the budget portrayed here didnt seem to allow for such an undertaking.
     

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