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Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by firemanparamedic, Jul 20, 2006.

  1. firemanparamedic

    firemanparamedic Registered Member

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    Hey guys, new to the forum, and just wanting a bit of advice on my truck. I have a stock 77 chevy and I am getting ready to give it some upgrades. The truck will mostly be used for pulling my boat (18ft cntr console 2500-3000pds trailer weight). I was just wondering what engine upgrades would be good to help this engine pull the boat. Im tired of watching my speedometer needle fall when I hit a two inch incline pulling my boat (how my 95 truck reacts when pulling the boat). On the same note I will be doing a tranny swap and was wondering what you guys would recommend (Ive read other posts but none seem to address towing). All my buddies own diesels and insist that I cant get this from a gas powered engine and that I have to go diesel (Im being stubborn and refusing to concede).

    Current Setup:
    SB 350
    3.73's
    TH350 (having some problems...needs an overhaul)
    4bbl Rochestor (getting ready to convert to TBI)

    Budget is some concern so big $ crate engine swaps are out.

    Thanks alot guys.
     
  2. southernspeed

    southernspeed 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Take a look at towrig.com but as far as I'm aware gearing and trans is as important or more so than engine power. Obviously an oil burner is the way to go but like you......I like pouring that gasoline down the manifold!
     
  3. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    if you're going to stick with a 3 speed auto and the one you have has issues, upgrade to a th400. Core-rebuilders are pretty common/cheap (craigslist!) and its just a stronger tranny. What size tires you run? A gear change might be appropriate too... depends. Getting lots of power out of a SBC can cost you a lot of $$$$$. I'd focus on appropriate gearing etc to get more power to the wheels with the engine you have.

    j
     
  4. firemanparamedic

    firemanparamedic Registered Member

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    Thanks

    Thanks guys you say tires effect? I was fixing to put new rims and tires on it as the stock ones are old and rusted. Lower Gears you say? Like 4.10? I went to the towrig site and from what I read there it sounds like my friends were right...diesel is the awnser. I was also looking into a cam made more for towing. Thanks again for your input.
     
  5. southernspeed

    southernspeed 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Yeah, Ive always used the Edelbrock Performer cams and intake and TC IHD/RV converters in all my trucks.
     
  6. Thunder

    Thunder 3/4 ton status

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    You can easily build a 350 to tow a light boat like yours. Headers, exhaust,high torque Cam, Intake, 4.10 gears. Will make a good puller for your boat.
    I tow a similar 18' Sport craft all over the west with my 89 Blazer 350 TBI, 700r4, 3.73 gears. Towed my boat many times to the No cal coast about a 1400 mile round trip over numerious high mountain ranges. I have a warmed up TBI 350. I think it tows my boat just fine. And have never really felt the need or desire to have a rattler. My K5 aint the best tow rig in the world but I like it and it works fine for my needs. Thats all that matters to me.
     
  7. jekbrown

    jekbrown I am CK5 Premium Member GMOTM Winner Author

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    my entire tow rig cost less than what it costs for a mechanic to look at a desiel. If I was daddy warbucks, I'd agree, buy a $50,000 desiel truck. For anyone who doesn't have a gazillion bucks though, nuttin wrong with a gas powered tow rig.

    j
     
  8. firemanparamedic

    firemanparamedic Registered Member

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    Thanks Guys

    Thanks for all of you guys input, Im trying to decide which cam and manifold I want to go with...any suggestions? Keep in mind it will be TBI, (conversion is cheap and easy, and saves on gas). As far as exhaust goes I already have a dual set up in mind which will greatly enlarge the exhaust flow. I have run in to one minor hitch though..Im gonna have to pull the engine to do the cam and manifold, but my old headers are rusted solid..any tips on removing old rusted header bolts? Ive tried some penetrating stuff but I still cant budge them, not that Im just cranking down on my break wrench (dont relish the thought of drilling out bolts). Oh and after careful comparison and consideration Im thinking about leaving my high gears, 4.10 would kill and I do mean kill my gas mileage....pulling 3k to much for 3.73's? Also I am sticking with my TH350 after talking to my local Tranny guy who indicated that TH400's do indeed take alot more power to get up and go. With that In mind Im going to have the TH350 overhauled with an shift kit and more sturdy components (B&M or some other aftermarket tranny place) but Im torn between buying a tranny cooler by itself, or buying a combo cooler (both oil and tranny oil). The reason Im entertaining the idea of a combo cooler instead of two seperate coolers is I am worried that two individual coolers will cover of my radiator/ condensor to much and kill my engine cooling and also equally as imporant my ac condensor (this will be my daily driver and showing up to work dripping in sweat would not be the most professional move to make) Thanks alot guys
     

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