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Putting in a new cam

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by 78Jimmyish, Oct 28, 2001.

  1. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    How much work is it anyway? I have this lopey-ass cam that came with my truck and it seriously takes away from my off the line power. I wanna replace it with something a little bit more practical, but having absolutely no clue what I'm doing, should I even attempt it? Or should I just take it to a shop and have it done.

    I can follow directions as long as the procedure isn't too crazy (like R&P setup..)
     
  2. hammer

    hammer 1/2 ton status

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    If you know somebody to adjust the valves yes you can do it your self, It take about 8 hours and you have to remove the intake and carb, water pump timming chain cover. and loosen the oil pan in the front only to put the timming chain cover back on. Radiator has to be removed and grille if it is in the way. Go very slow when pulling the cam out not to nick the front bearing on the block. HAVE FUN
     
  3. 4x4blazer

    4x4blazer 1/2 ton status

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    I wouldnt recomend replacing the cam without replacing the bearings and lifters\rods. When all of these parts are new, they wear on each other creating a "signature". If you put a new cam in and not bearings, the clearances may not be right causing future problems.
    Are you positive the cam is what is causing your sluggish take-off?
    Just my opinions.
     
  4. chevyracing

    chevyracing 1/2 ton status

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    Jimmy,
    Replacing a cam is a simple but intimidating thing to do. One problem you will have is when you go to put the timing cover back on, it won't go because of where the front oil pan to timing cover seal goes there is a lip in it that prevents you from putting it back in. You can solve this without taking off the oil pan by filing the top corners of that lip on the track where the seal goes on the timing cover off at about a 45 degree angle on the corners. The timing cover will snuggly fit back in but will go. When you file it don't file into the seal track, just the tab part. If you want to do your own cam what I just described is the absolute hardest part of the job. If you want to do it let me know and I can walk you through the whole thing. One key thing you need to know is how many miles are on the engine.. If there are a bunch you may need some more stuff too. Also remember if you change the cam, you absolutely must change the lifters or you will dish a lfter out or take a lobe off of the new cam.

    Like I said, if you want to do it I will walk you through the whole thing. I have done hundreds of them with out any problems.

    John

    Like to go sloppin' 'round in da mud in a rapid fashion....=) [​IMG]

    <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing>http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing</a>
     
  5. MRBIGBLOCK

    MRBIGBLOCK 1/2 ton status

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    the old bearings wont be a problem for a new cam.the lifters however MUST BE REPLACED with new ones . the WEAR PATERN on used lifters will work only with that cam, and on the same lobe. the push rods can be reused also. you MUST follow the recomended breakin procedures.
     
  6. xnoahx

    xnoahx 1/2 ton status

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    I did it going from an article in car craft. Its simple. Most cam kits come with lifters so that shouldnt be a problem.

    You might also want to think about putting on a better intake manifold if you dont already have one. You will be removing that anyway so why not replace it.

    You will also want to check the timing chain for wear. You can get a new double roller gear and chain set for about $20 from summit.

    The only part I had trouble with was getting the balancer off. Do yourself a favor and get a balancer removal tool. You will also nee something to get the old lower timing gear off it you replace the timing gears and chain. You will need a 3 jaw puller to get one of those off.

    Its a really simple job, just be patient and ask questions on here if you have any trouble. just be gentle with the old and new cam. and make sure you put A LOT of assembly lube on the cam lobes, journals and the bottom of the new lifters.

    My 73 K5 <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/xk5blazerx/73k5.htm>http://www.geocities.com/xk5blazerx/73k5.htm</a> 350/TH350/NP203, Q-jet, Edelbrock intake, Vortec heads, 4" lift, and 36" TSL's
     
  7. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    I think I'll take you guys up on the offers to help. I'm going to do it at work, and my mechanic buddy works in the same plaza that I do so I'll have all the tools I need. Plus that way, I can leave the truck at work, take a couple weekends to do it. Do it slow and get it right the first time. Thanks guys.
     
  8. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    It won't take a couple weekends or eight hours if you know what you're doing. I'd bet I could do mine in 4 hours or less.

    Tim
    '84 Chevy K10, lifted, loud, fast, and 3/4 ton axles
     
  9. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    Unfortunately I have no clue what I'm doing...but I'm gonna give it a shot anyway. So now what kind of cam should I be looking for for a stock 350?
     
  10. xnoahx

    xnoahx 1/2 ton status

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    your best bet would be to call the cam manufactuer that you are going to go with and tell them what you have and what you intend to do with it. Like your engine size and what the truck will be used for. you dont have a high RPM engine so why get a cam that was made for one.

    My 73 K5 <a target="_blank" href=http://www.geocities.com/xk5blazerx/73k5.htm>http://www.geocities.com/xk5blazerx/73k5.htm</a> 350/TH350/NP203, Q-jet, Edelbrock intake, Vortec heads, 4" lift, and 36" TSL's
     
  11. 85Jimmy

    85Jimmy Registered Member

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    i would call or email Summit Racing www.summitracing.com tell them what you need they should have a summit cam and lifter kit that would work for what you need for about $89 I installed one in a 429 ford in a 76 4wd f-150 and it runs great! p.s. you should'nt have any trouble installing it in your small block chevy.
     
  12. KRAZIE87K5

    KRAZIE87K5 1/2 ton status

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    Ummm... my experience is NOT to leave your cam selectios up to Summit Racing. I just finished installing a new cam in my truck after benig completely unhappy with the first cam that Summit recommended. I (and Rene) did some research on Comp Cams web site and selected my new cam 11-206-3. We crossed all cam specs through <a target="_blank" href=http://ftp://ck5@24.10.209.54/engine%20analyzer/ea30.zip>Engine Analyzer</a> (which you can download from my FTP site, just remove the http:// from the beginning of the clicky link, or go here: ftp://ck5@24.10.209.54/engine analyzer/ea30.zip).

    Anyhow... please do yourself a service and trust your cam selection to nothing less than your own research. Other folks may have other experiences, this one is just my own... so take it as you will!

    Good luck with your selection and install. BTW - I will invite anyone who thinks they can install a cam in 4 hours over to do my next swap for me! Mine took me about 4 days @ ~4hrs each day!

    Just my .02!

    <font color=red>GOT MUD???</font color=red>
    My license plate reads:<font color=blue> 8 YR SUV</font color=blue>
    <a target="_blank" href=http://24.10.209.54/bigolk5.htm>http://24.10.209.54/bigolk5.htm</a>
    454/TH400/NP205 - 14BFF/D60/w/ 4.10s
     
  13. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    I was looking at one of the comp cams 4x4 cams online last night. And I think when I do it, I think I'm going to go ahead and get the edelbrock performer intake and swap that in too.
     
  14. chevyracing

    chevyracing 1/2 ton status

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    A cam change in around 4 hours is very feasable. I have done it a couple of times. Allbeit however I do have air tools and have done many cam changes before. If someone has never done one before it will probablty take 4 hours just to figure out how to make the harmonic balance puller to work.
    Seriously though, one thing you need to do if you are not familiar with lift specs, duration specs and which lobe center is right for your application you need to give the Comp Cams Tech Line a call.

    John

    Like to go sloppin' 'round in da mud in a rapid fashion....=) [​IMG]

    <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing>http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing</a>
     
  15. 85Jimmy

    85Jimmy Registered Member

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    the first cam i got for the 429 from summit had the one lobe all messed up but they sent me a second one, it was what i was looking for it runs great for 79.95, the messed up cam just delayed it for a couple days.
     
  16. 85Jimmy

    85Jimmy Registered Member

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    krazie87k5 how do you get that engine program i could'nt get the link to work with or without the http.
     
  17. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    I just highlit and copied the ftp address into my web browser and got it that way.
     
  18. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    In 16 hours I could have my whole engine out and back in again at least once...probably well on my way to doing it twice. It took me about 8 hours to install the whole engine with EVERYTHING disconnected and I couldn't even find my tools half the time. I thought THAT was slow!! A cam change in 4 hours? If I couldn't do it in four hours, I'd think I was pretty slow.

    If you've never attempted it before, I'd recommend getting someone to show you how to do it though. I have never done it with the motor in the vehicle, but I know what's involved (did it on the stand before I put the motor in.

    I have the Comp Xtreme 4x4 250/258 204/216 .432/.453 111 LSA cam in my 305 (4bbl heads, perfromer intake, Dynomax headers, 9.2:1 c/r, 500 CFM carb). Those are the specs as far as I can remember. It worked very well in my application. I am thinking of going a little bigger when I put my manual trans in. I guess we'll see. I know I'll go with a bigger cam if I decide to port the heads.

    My engine has TORQUE!!! And lots of it. I have 4.10 gears and 35" tires and I can accelerate to 55 MPH and the tach will never exceed 2,000 RPM.

    Somehow that 305 beat every small block truck at the local 4x4 event. Maybe it's the driver (doubtful). Either way, that Xtreme 4x4 makes serious torque!

    Tim
    '84 Chevy K10, lifted, loud, fast, and 3/4 ton axles
     
  19. 78Jimmyish

    78Jimmyish 1/2 ton status

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    That's the cam that I was looking at but there's a bunch of different variations of that cam and since I know nothing at all about camshafts - any suggestions? My motor is a stock 350 with a Holley 4bbl (that at some point fairly soon is going to become an Edelbrock Q-Jet) and I'm going to put in the performer intake when I do the cam. I do work with a guy who's done it before so he's going to hold my hand most of the way, but he's not a mechanic, just a hobby shop guy, so I'm sure I'll have some questions for y'all.

    Thanks for the help guys.
     
  20. chevyracing

    chevyracing 1/2 ton status

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    Edlebrock Q-jet?

    Like to go sloppin' 'round in da mud in a rapid fashion....=) [​IMG]

    <a target="_blank" href=http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing>http://community.webshots.com/user/chevyracing</a>
     

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