TH400 with GV or 4L80 - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 20, 4:18 PM Thread Starter
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TH400 with GV or 4L80

Trying to make a decision on on drivetrain for a 68 Chevelle I'm restoring. I spoke with Mark vortecpro on a 565 BB build but I lucked into a 555 from Terry Walters Precision Engines that was built for someone who passed away before taking delivery - couldn't pass it up. Maybe the next engine for my Camaro Mark. Dyno numbers 692 ft-lbs.of [email protected] and 665 HP @ 5800 RPM.

I was going to go with a TH400 and a gear vendors but I keep thinking 4L80 might be a good way to go as well.
The goal for the car is a street car that will see the drag strip where I want to be low 10s naturally aspirated. It should be close to factory weight when I'm done as I'm not focused on lightening anything the exception being a fiberglass stinger hood.
Cost isn't really a concern because a TH400 with GV looks to be close in price to a built 4L80E. Planning on a Holly Terminator or dominator multiport system which includes trans control but if I stay carb I don't have a problem with a stand-alone trans controller needed for a 4l80.

Is the 6speed of the TH400 with Gear Vendors going to be a better route than the 4 with the 4l80 at the drag strip? Rear will be a Ford 9 with 3:55s. Still also undecided on converter and tire size.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 20, 4:41 PM
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Lew
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

For simplicity I would go with GV OD and T400. No need to change converter or shifter no computer (other than their GV small unit). The OD is primarily used for the highway and will not need at drag strip due to your 3.55 gearing which in the end gets you a 2.70 rear. Also the 4L80E is big and may take some extensive work on floor board - on my GV I just had tweak a couple of areas on my 1965 Chevelle. I like the GV unit I have in mine and I have 3.73s behind a 540.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 20, 9:09 PM
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

I had a similar conundrum; 467 in a 71, just under 600 hp and 600 ft/lbs., 3.31 gears, Holley Terminator; had a strong TH400 ready to go. Many folks will absolutely tell you to go with the TH400/GV, and I agree - and a TH400 with a GV is a GREAT combination to capture OD on the street and still perform on the strip. It's all but a bullet-proof set-up. However, you will need to do some minor hammering on the tunnel in a 68-72 A-body for clearance of the bosses on top of the GV OD unit to get a decent alignment angle with the rear end. You'll also have to run a couple of wires and mount the button on your shifter (or a dimmer-type switch on the floor), as well as find a home for the small control box. None of it is hard, but must be done.

Based on your post and even with your desire to be in the low 10's, I would still likely select the 4L80. Without torque converters, the 4L80 is about 43 more lbs. than a TH400. But at your level of torque, you are not going to even remotely notice a difference in my opinion. I feel Jake's Performance does about the best 4L80's out there from their line of options or tailored the way you want it. They have a nice FAQ page about 4L80's with good info. 4L80E FAQ ? Jake?s Performance

A 4L80 requires NO work to the transmission tunnel on a 68-72 A-body. Make no mistake, the fit is DARN CLOSE at the back, and you will need to use the banjo cooler line fittings from Sweet Performance to clear the floor if using the later model housing, but no hammering or cutting. From talking to others, those that do contact the floor generally suffer from worn-out body bushings. A set of polyurethane Energy Suspension body bushings will eliminate that issue. G-force makes a nice cross-member specifically for this conversion application as well.

Check out this article https://www.hemmings.com/blog/articl...et-chevelle-2/

Again, I have nothing against GV - I like those units and think they are a great choice if that's what you prefer. My car is a 95%+ street car, and I didn't want to beat up the floor pan on this particular car, no matter how small, hence my choice for the 4L80. I also went with a reverse pattern, manual shift - no computer. I used to have TH400 with a reverse pattern manual shift for about 20 years and loved it. It just feels more natural to me to keep pulling back on the shifter. Others like the computer and programming the shift points.
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Last edited by Bronze68; Jan 6th, 20 at 9:29 PM.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 20, 11:23 PM
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

i'm thinking if you already have a T400 then the GV should be with it...
if you are looking for a transmission then the 4l80e would do it nicely...

68-Malibu 427bbc/t4oo/3.73-12bolt/pro charger f1-r
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 20, 12:37 AM
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Gary
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

I would put a 308 in it. I bet the et diff is .050 or less
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 20, 6:08 AM
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Joe
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Quote:
Originally Posted by travisch View Post
Trying to make a decision on on drivetrain for a 68 Chevelle I'm restoring. I spoke with Mark vortecpro on a 565 BB build but I lucked into a 555 from Terry Walters Precision Engines that was built for someone who passed away before taking delivery - couldn't pass it up. Maybe the next engine for my Camaro Mark. Dyno numbers 692 ft-lbs.of [email protected] and 665 HP @ 5800 RPM.

I was going to go with a TH400 and a gear vendors but I keep thinking 4L80 might be a good way to go as well.
The goal for the car is a street car that will see the drag strip where I want to be low 10s naturally aspirated. It should be close to factory weight when I'm done as I'm not focused on lightening anything the exception being a fiberglass stinger hood.
Cost isn't really a concern because a TH400 with GV looks to be close in price to a built 4L80E. Planning on a Holly Terminator or dominator multiport system which includes trans control but if I stay carb I don't have a problem with a stand-alone trans controller needed for a 4l80.

Is the 6speed of the TH400 with Gear Vendors going to be a better route than the 4 with the 4l80 at the drag strip? Rear will be a Ford 9 with 3:55s. Still also undecided on converter and tire size.
I think you're being overly optimistic expecting to get a "restored" '68 Chevelle , all steel body (except for the hood) with a roll bar into low 10's without running a lot of tire, a lot of gear and a lot of converter - and possibly needing a lot more RPM up top.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 20, 9:29 AM Thread Starter
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Quote:
Originally Posted by GRN69CHV View Post
I think you're being overly optimistic expecting to get a "restored" '68 Chevelle , all steel body (except for the hood) with a roll bar into low 10's without running a lot of tire, a lot of gear and a lot of converter - and possibly needing a lot more RPM up top.
Probably but you gotta have an objective/goal and start somewhere. Looks like you can fit a lot of tire in a 67-72 a-body so I'd have a set of street tires and a set of slicks for the strip.
Converter is another key factor that I haven't even started to really think about. I really need to get the final dyno sheet, car weight, tire size ect figured out so I can start making some phone calls. Right now the engine has an 1150 Dominator on it and Terry wants to try a Holly Ultra XP 950 on it.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 7th, 20, 3:53 PM
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Joe
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Quote:
Originally Posted by travisch View Post
Probably but you gotta have an objective/goal and start somewhere. Looks like you can fit a lot of tire in a 67-72 a-body so I'd have a set of street tires and a set of slicks for the strip.
Converter is another key factor that I haven't even started to really think about. I really need to get the final dyno sheet, car weight, tire size ect figured out so I can start making some phone calls. Right now the engine has an 1150 Dominator on it and Terry wants to try a Holly Ultra XP 950 on it.

For comparison, I was hitting low 11's (11.20's) on/off the throttle with a 540" putting out about the same power. 3.42 gears, 3000 stall 10" converter and 275/60 MT drag radial. '69, bench seat car with factory AC. no roll bar, which in the end, tech stopped me from running any quicker. Race weight was 4070# with driver. To shave a full second off and drop to 10.20's, would've taken a lot of changes. 10.90's?? Yes, was easily doable.

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Jan 8th, 20, 3:24 PM Thread Starter
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Thanks Joe!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 20, 6:57 PM
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Quote:
Originally Posted by travisch View Post
Trying to make a decision on on drivetrain for a 68 Chevelle I'm restoring. I spoke with Mark vortecpro on a 565 BB build but I lucked into a 555 from Terry Walters Precision Engines that was built for someone who passed away before taking delivery - couldn't pass it up. Maybe the next engine for my Camaro Mark. Dyno numbers 692 ft-lbs.of [email protected] and 665 HP @ 5800 RPM.
So that 555 puts out only 665 HP and 692 lbFt torque.
I looked around and found this:

I don't know what you have in it already, but as you can seeyour giving up 160 HP and 40 LbFt torque.

Quote:
Originally Posted by travisch View Post
Probably but you gotta have an objective/goal and start somewhere. Looks like you can fit a lot of tire in a 67-72 a-body so I'd have a set of street tires and a set of slicks for the strip.
Converter is another key factor that I haven't even started to really think about. I really need to get the final dyno sheet, car weight, tire size ect figured out so I can start making some phone calls. Right now the engine has an 1150 Dominator on it and Terry wants to try a Holly Ultra XP 950 on it.
I hope you didn't put money down yet
or order the carb. What is going to happen is the bait and switch, your Dominator that you paid for is probably fine,
but then he'll send you a Holley Ultra 950 XP. You won't even get the parts that came with it, i.e.; no idle extensions
a carb that many tuners dislike and it's hard to tune. Runs well at a very high RPM range etc.

Don't expect any quality time after the sale. You're on your own. Hopefully he'll ship yours in a bag, unlike
what he did with my engine. You'll also see NOT FINAL on all your invoices etc. So he can change out whatever
he wants to give you.

From what I hear, guys like Mark (vortecpro) and Mike (Lewis Racing Engines), will ensure that you are satisfied
and will keep working with you to get the engine up and running properly.
Unlike Mister Walters and David Vizard.

Feel free to PM me your NOT FINAL build sheet and the Dyno Pulls. Remember these are paid for by you and you are entitled to them.

I am free to discuss the crap that Mister Walters and David Vizard pulled on me, etc. The other engine builders
typically keep mum, as it's not professional to bad mouth your "competition."

Of all the things that David and Mister Walters could have done to assist me, after knowing that I had
valve problems and still do--they've ignored me, played dumb, said they weren't going to use the same
people, then never returned my calls or suggested anyone they know who could help me out.

In my case, I got the double whammy, and engine that is finally running but not tunable for street use,
didn't follow DVs guidelines for parts that I purchased up front, then bait and switch parts on there that I didn't want
and still give me problems to this day. And a recommended "mechanic/hack" that changed all the electrical
that I did and then couldn't get the engine to run.

What ever you do, you do not want that Holley Ultra 950 XP.

Here is my thread about it: LINK

All the best for your engine,

-- Spike

PS - I bet your engine paint starts falling off and it's not painted at the back of the engine.
Mine wasn't. One of those things that got drilled into my USMC head...kind of like the following:
Did you wipe your rear end after defecating? Why? No one sees it!

That's the polite version.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 20, 7:40 PM
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Spike,

been following your other thread and was going to post a link but was glad to get to the bottom and read that you already posted. Your link don't work though.

LINK Here it is.

Travisch,

Do yourself a favor and go with either of the builders Spike mentioned. I'm partial as I went with VORTECPRO (Mark). Do a search on either Gentleman and you wont be disappointed.

Quote:
Engines that was built for someone who passed away before taking delivery
Never heard that one before.

If you do go with them, please post up as i'm sure it would be a good read.

Oh and my vote TH400 and GV for what some already mentioned. It will also help with the Trans to rear angles that you're going with a 9". The pinion is lower and helps with the angle.

Mike
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 20, 8:32 PM
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

I must be missing something because I don't understand Spike's post. Why would you bash the OP for buying an engine that makes 140HP less but is probably half the price or less. I know Vortecpro does not charge anywhere near $19,000 for his engines. If the OP's budget was $19,000 he could purchase a Shafiroff pump gas 632 that makes 945HP for $17,000. That's 120HP more than the engine sugested by Spike for $2,000 less.
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'69 Camaro - 429 SBC Dart Iron Eagle 9.325" block, Crower crank, Crower 6" Billet rods, Ross pistons (10:1), Total Seal S/S rings, AFR 245 heads, T&D steel rockers, Cloyes Timing Set, 4-7 swap solid roller 274/286 @ .050", .704" lift, Dart single plane, Dominator EFI, Stef's #1705R pan, F2 Procharger on E85
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 20, 2:48 PM
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Spike
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

cage2592, I don't know why the link doesn't work? It should work fine.
I see you linked it properly, thank you.

Steve69ss396, you are correct, sir and all points taken under consideration.
The OP could do all those things, right? We don't know what the OP has in the build though.
However, we do have the numbers from DVs How to build Chevy Big Blocks on a budget.
Right about now the OP is getting into BAIT AND SWITCH issues.

How do I know? Because I went through that with these guys. I still have issues
after I received their engine with parts I didn't want, and aren't tunable for what
I need. I've tried to rectify the situation, they obviously don't care to do the honorable
thing.

It's not so much builder a, b, or c, pricing as you so aptly pointed out there are
better deals out there for which I agree. Rather, I was warning about a pattern of
behavior both TWPS and DV that I feel is less than honorable.

Those guys are still selling the actual cover engine over and over again.
Imagine that.

It's one Team Chevelle brother warning another Team Chevelle brother,
so he won't end up in the same boat as I am.

-- Spike
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 20, 3:42 PM
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Steve
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

A 4L80 with a GV will need the center of the cab floor brace cut out and some minor hammer work.
It's in a 70 elco with a all roller balanced 496, a currie 9" with a 3.50 geared Tru trac diff.
Have had the GV for about 9 months, 80 mph is about 2200 rpm - almost 600 rpm lower than just o.d.
As I was told by some, am not sure how how many mpg it "saves", but do like the rpm drop at speed.
I like it too much so far to do a mileage run.
Will have data after the power tour
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 20, 4:08 PM
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Jeff
 
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Re: TH400 with GV or 4L80

Th400 with a 2.75 first gear set with a 2.73 rear end no over drive.. Use a converter that will give you some torque multiplication like one that came with the stock th400 Impala 427 unit..... If your really serious about making this a street machine you need heavy duty parts that can handle the serious workout that street driving will give that set up..
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