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What should I do with my 350?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by txbartman, Sep 2, 2002.

  1. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    Okay, the 350 is dead. As of this afternoon, it will be on the engine stand and ready for disassembly. The big question I still have is what should I do with it?

    The truck currently has 700R4 tranny, locked 10-bolt axles, 4.56 gears, and 35" BFG MTs. Within the next two years, it will be going to D60/14BFF axles, 5.13 gears (maybe D60/D60 with taller gears) and 42" Swampers. The engine in its original configuration was pushing around 300HP and 330 ft-lb torque (rough guestimates based on configuration and components). It was a new crate 350 bought from GM in January that I beefed up. It had 6,000 miles on it before saying 'goodbye'. I now have a few options.

    (1) I can rebuild it the way I had it (but with guideplates for the pushrods). This would require a basic rebuild with quite a bit of machine work on the heads as they took the brunt of the damage. All the components in the heads will also probably need replacing. I may just replace the entire heads. The crank and pistons should be fine. I don't know yet about the cam. Rough cost estimate (with new heads and cam) is around $1500-2000.

    (2) I can take advantage of this opportunity to bore it and stroke it into a stump-pullin' 383. The head work would still be the same as in option #1. Only real additional work for this option is boring the block and prepping it for the 400 crank. The pistons, rods, and crank would also have to be replaced. For cost estimates, Summit has a 383 kit for $1000. Add that to the head work and add the boring and this one would run between $2500 and $3000. But, properly built, I could then be pushing 350+ HP and 415+ ft-lb torque.

    I need an engine that has the power to get me out of the trouble I can get into. I need something that will effectively power the big meats targeted for the future. I need something that is reliable and not going to break down every trail run. I need something that is still street driveable. And I need good fuel economy. (just kidding! /forums/images/icons/grin.gif )

    If it was your pocketbook and your rig, what would you do?
     
  2. jc71355

    jc71355 1/2 ton status

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    I would go 383 /forums/images/icons/grin.gif . Your always gonna want more power /forums/images/icons/cool.gif . Especially when you go bigger tires. Only problem I could see is you might be pushing your 10Bolts, but since you are planning to upgrade then I guess that don't matter /forums/images/icons/wink.gif
     
  3. heavy4x4

    heavy4x4 1/2 ton status

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    This is what I would do:
    -Have a machine shop redo cylinders (.030 over) and head mounting surface.
    -Then rebuild the engine with stock components. Maybe some better pistons, but don't get too carried away.
    -For heads, ditch the stockers and put on a set of vortec heads. This would then require a vortec intake, but the power improvement would be worth it.
    -Next, put on a set of headers, and some kind of fuel injection. TBI would be good for starters, and later you could upgrade to the Edelbrock Port injection system.

    I see this as being a reliable and powerful system. Some may have other opinions, but again, this is what I would do.
     
  4. shupach

    shupach 1/2 ton status

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    how'd u blow the engine bryan? right now with my engine im just uppin the CR, some head work, bigger cam, new pistons and FI. Personally i would try something like the 383 but also try to get fuel injection, that way u can have reliability and u konw ur car wont bog down, i got my system off of a 91 suburban from a junkyard off of old mansfield highway, if u really want to do something crazy, put a blower on the sucker, you'll get some nice power then.

    phill
     
  5. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

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    Unless you somehow got junk into the cylinders, then the engine shouldn't need to be bored at 6,000 miles. The bottom end should still be fine. I'd just toss on a set of Vortec heads, install a new cam and lifters and call it good. Use the money you save to help pay for the D60. /forums/images/icons/cool.gif
     
  6. NCblackandredk5

    NCblackandredk5 1/2 ton status

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    im in the same positon except i ha a head gaket and rings g at the same time...i wontbe rebuilding my 350 though.. time to go big block... i found a tbi suburban with a 454 and will probably be buying it within the next 2 weeks... just think 454/turbo400 and a sf 14b all for $1200... just a thought.. maybe you can check into something like this....
     
  7. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    I went by the performance shop last night to talk options and prices on the motor. I think we came up with a good two-part plan. The current belief is that the block is okay. The heads are the biggest issue. The first part of the plan is to replace the heads. They are going to build a set of heads (can't remember the basic brand for the empty head) using 2.02/1.60 stainless valves, custom springs matched to the lift of the cam, my existing roller tip rockers that have 160cc or 170cc runners (can't recall which). These wil be basically equivalent to World S/R Torquers. Total cost to completely build out these heads including all the required parts is expected around $750. Same price as Summit has for S\R Torquers and they are built locally which will help with any problems down the road. I asked about bigger runners (200-220cc) and was told that this would move my powerbad up the RPM scale. Considering my target RPM range is idle to 3500, he did not recommend bigger runners.

    The second part of the plan is the block. One option was to vat and hone it and basically reassemble it with the existing components (new oil pump) once everything was verified as okay. This would not cost too much money and would get me back to the 300HP/330ft lb numbers I was at before. He could also replace the pistons and get me up to the 330HP/350ft lb range. But, the option I am going with is to stroke it. He does not see any reason to bore it. The plan is to replace the crank, rods, and pistons (Keith Black), hone the engine slightly for better rings and professionally balance the whole thing. This setup including all parts and labor to completely assemble the long block is expected to come in around $1300.

    The 383 option combined with the heads is estimated to produce 380-400HP and 420-450ft lb of torque. I think this will be plenty for my current rig setup and enough to move forward with the bigger axles and 42s in the near future with no performace degredations.

    Thanks for y'alls thoughts. I will get some pictures up once this is done. My target is to have this engine back in the rig by mid-October.
     
  8. Cmoe

    Cmoe 1/2 ton status

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    As someone else said it would be a great time to got to a TPI system. Also you need to think about your trany, is it a Raptor or is it all stock (700r4)? Is it all going to hold upn to the 383?
     
  9. Silver84k5

    Silver84k5 1/2 ton status

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    what happend to only make it last 6000 miles? id be pissed at that first off.
     
  10. BorregoK5

    BorregoK5 1/2 ton status

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    I agree with <font color="orange"> HarrH3 </font color> . A set of Vortecs and match the remaining components to the heads and you'd be getting close to the 383 with substantially less cash.
     
  11. txbartman

    txbartman 1/2 ton status

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    I have thought about the TPI standpoint, but that isn't going to deliver any additional power per se, simply some added efficiency. When I go FI, I am favoring the Edelbrock TPI setup, but we're talking 2 grand. I have to come up with a system capable of delivering on the demands of the engine. My 795 CFM q-jet does fine for now, so I am going to put this component off for a bit. I also have emissions to concern myself with, and any FI will cause me to fail the visual (regardless of the fact that I bet my emissions would be cleaner).

    On the 700, I am not worried about the internals of this tranny. I am, however, expecting to replace the torque converter based on the specs of the new engine.
     
  12. Derf00

    Derf00 1/2 ton status

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    Faced with all the same issues as you on my old 350, I opted to go with a custom built 383 with Vortec heads and Edlebrock Multi-point FI and a LT1 cam that is computer friendly. With 4.56's, D60/14B &amp; 37's the present combination runs like a scaled dog and has plenty of torque &amp; hp to go with larger tires in the future.
    /forums/images/icons/grin.gif
     
  13. lizard

    lizard 1/2 ton status

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    I dont think I would rebuild a factory set of heads for the same price as the S/R's. S/R's have some advantages including thicker casting screw in studs. Unless you have some great factory heads it wont be worth it...

    The vortecs would make a good upgrade too..
     

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