My buddy machining my custom radio parts was taking too long and I got bored without anything to tinker with on my truck so I decided a new tranny was in order. The trip to Moab was too painful in a 3-speed on the freeway.
I've always driven manual trannys and I like the idea of more controlled crawling over obstacles. In addition, I still have 3.07 gears in the axles and I plan on running those till they break. Plus manuals just seem like more fun and that is what a convertible k5 is all about!
I at first started ordering parts for a sm465 but learned that without overdrive, it wouldn't be much different than the th350 I had in it. So I sold the 465 stuff and started researching the nv4500 a few people had referred to.
The nv4500 is pretty expensive compared to the sm465, but not enough to discourage me. Somehow I think I only added all the costs up in my mind and not on paper. This allowed me to "forget" lots of stuff so it didn't seem as expensive as it is now turning out to be. I'm not sure I would have done it if I really did ALL the math beforehand. Oh well, this truck is just a reason to have fun getting filthy wrenching on something than for any real practical reasons.
And since I had a case of the "might as well's" I decided a doubler might as well be added since I'd have to mod the driveshafts anyway! This would give me a better crawl ratio to help make up for the fact I'm still running 3.07 d44 axle ( and I need it to have good freeway manners.)
It's a pretty stock 71 with a 4" lift.