"Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383? - Chevelle Tech
Engine AdvertisementGeneral Engine Discussion. Advertisement

 5Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 12:48 AM Thread Starter
Tech Team
Richard
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: No. Nevada
Posts: 407
Question "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

It looks like I may need to rebuld the engine in my 81 C3500 "Support truck".
Currently a Goodwrench 350 but seems to be missing compression on three cylinders.
Had hoped it might just be another flat-cam, but no such luck.
So I will do a leak-down test on Sunday.
Doubt it is a heads/valves issue.

So if I'm into a rebuild anyway, pro's and con's of a 383 conversion kit?
This is a one-ton flat-bed truck used to carry or tow cars and parts.
No high compression or radical cams needed!

I liked the mileage of the 350 but sometimes wished for F.I. or a Turbo when climbing steep grades.
Never wanted am 8-mpg 454, but maybe a mild 383 would not kill me in gas while giving me the torque I need for crossing the Sierra's?
A 383 kit can be done for only about $800 more than a standard 350 if I stay away from go-fast goodies.

At these gas prices I want it 100+ octane, leaded, and my windshield washed!
Richard/SIA is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 2:09 AM
Senior Tech Team
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 9,573
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Id find a later model 350 block, preferably one that has Vortec heads, make sure it has provisions for a factory hydraulic roller camshaft and use that as the foundation.

Steve R
Blown1932 likes this.
Steve R is online now  
post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 5:42 AM
Senior Tech Team
Brian
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: SE Indiana
Posts: 1,871
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

My vote goes for the 383 since it is mainly a towing vehicle. Use a cam that focus' more on low end torque than HP. I doubt mileage would suffer much since fuel mileage has more to do with engine load than it does displacement or speed.
Blown1932 likes this.
buenymayor is offline  
 
post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 7:56 AM
Gold Member
Gene
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Buffalo NY
Posts: 13,438
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Dont want to sound like a jerk, but would you consider an LS swap? It would run you more for a non rebuilt mill, for sure, but.... and then there is the 12 valve Cummins. The PERFECT light tow/ work truck mill.

Otherwise I'd vote for the most stroke/bore and smallest runners I could. To Brians point MPG may not be effected if the TQ and throttle position of the 383 are better suited. Roller cams are nice, but you can probably get buy with such gentle spring pressures for a 4500 rpm mill....?

If you weigh the kit against rebuilding the rods and crank, hanging new slugs, its a no brainer.
77 cruiser likes this.

Gene
ACES 3112/Team Chevelle Gold #62
Be big, be a 'builder'!
427L88 is offline  
post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 12:10 PM Thread Starter
Tech Team
Richard
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: No. Nevada
Posts: 407
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Current engine is not the original.
Labeled as a "Goodwrench" but that is all I know.
Need to keep this as simple as possible since this robs funds from El Camino build.

What years/markings would be corrrect for a Vortec head roller cam engine?
Do center bolt valve covers mean Vortec?
Yah, I'm mostly "Old School" and pay no attention to almost anything made after the 70's.
This truck is as new as I can stand to own, has disc front brakes, IFS, and NO COMPUTERS!
But I REALLY miss my old '57.

LS and diesel, never.
Diesel, double never.
427L88 likes this.

At these gas prices I want it 100+ octane, leaded, and my windshield washed!
Richard/SIA is offline  
post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 12:19 PM
Lifetime Premium Member
Cory
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Wimberley, TX (SW of Austin)
Posts: 4,478
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Quote:
Originally Posted by buenymayor View Post
My vote goes for the 383 since it is mainly a towing vehicle. Use a cam that focus' more on low end torque than HP. I doubt mileage would suffer much since fuel mileage has more to do with engine load than it does displacement or speed.

I concur. Not that I'm a expert but it's just the right thang ta do.
dream66 is offline  
post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 12:59 PM
Senior Tech Team
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 9,573
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard/SIA View Post
Current engine is not the original.
Labeled as a "Goodwrench" but that is all I know.
Need to keep this as simple as possible since this robs funds from El Camino build.

What years/markings would be corrrect for a Vortec head roller cam engine?
Do center bolt valve covers mean Vortec?
Yah, I'm mostly "Old School" and pay no attention to almost anything made after the 70's.
This truck is as new as I can stand to own, has disc front brakes, IFS, and NO COMPUTERS!
But I REALLY miss my old '57.

LS and diesel, never.
Diesel, double never.
They came in late-90s trucks, carburetor manifolds are readily available.
Steve R is online now  
post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 2:12 PM
Lifetime Premium Member
Tom
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Firestone, CO
Posts: 881
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

TBI heads were also center bolt and not worth bothering with.

70 Camino...Roller

69 Malibu Stock 307, Reverse Manual TH350, 4,500 Stall Edge Converter, 4.56 Spool 35 Spline 12 Bolt

76 C20 VortecPro 496 628HP 655 lb/ft TH400 Edge Converter, 4.10 14 bolt
Tommy the Cat is offline  
post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 3:55 PM Thread Starter
Tech Team
Richard
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: No. Nevada
Posts: 407
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy the Cat View Post
TBI heads were also center bolt and not worth bothering with.
OK, so how to identify a Vortec head equipped engine?
Local Pick & Pull has lots of late 80's Chevy trucks, about $200.00 for a long block.
Do I go by the type of FI, will it have VORTEC marked in some manner?
I will want to use my old distributor too, no computers!

I'm sure some of you wonder how I could not know all this already.
Simple, I stopped paying attention to the new cars and trucks when the Fed. Gov. took over design in the 70's.

At these gas prices I want it 100+ octane, leaded, and my windshield washed!
Richard/SIA is offline  
post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 4:01 PM
Senior Tech Team
Gary
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Kansas City,Mo.
Posts: 4,156
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

the vortec blocks are great but it wont have a provision for a mech fuel pump so you will have to either go with an electric pump or use an older block. definitely use the vortec heads. i would use a 3 3/4 or even 3 7/8 stroke crank. keep the cam small and tight for low end torque. 260 on 106 to 108. you will have 500 ft lbs at 2k
gnicholson is online now  
post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 5:50 PM
Lifetime Premium Member
Tom
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Firestone, CO
Posts: 881
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

The Vortec heads came on '96 and newer trucks. I don't know the casting numbers offhand and there's enough places selling them ready to bolt on that you would probably be time and money ahead to buy them built. I think they need modified for lift over about .450 and screw-in rocker studs. I've never used Vortecs but I think those are a couple of things that need addressed.

Vortec engines have a multi port looking intake, not the two barrel thottle body.

70 Camino...Roller

69 Malibu Stock 307, Reverse Manual TH350, 4,500 Stall Edge Converter, 4.56 Spool 35 Spline 12 Bolt

76 C20 VortecPro 496 628HP 655 lb/ft TH400 Edge Converter, 4.10 14 bolt
Tommy the Cat is offline  
post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 6:21 PM
Senior Tech Team
gary
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: arizona
Posts: 1,074
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Some of the early roller lifter blocks did have mechanical fuel pump provision.
1967 chevelle malibu is offline  
post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 9:19 PM Thread Starter
Tech Team
Richard
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: No. Nevada
Posts: 407
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

So, in poking around the web it seems the Vortec heads have a "Sawtooth" casting on the ends, ^^^.
With that found it becomes reasonable to pop the covers and look for the casting number.

Now, to identify a roller-cam block?
Looks like those started in 1998?

At these gas prices I want it 100+ octane, leaded, and my windshield washed!
Richard/SIA is offline  
post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 10:05 PM
Senior Tech Team
Justin
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Huntington Beach
Posts: 1,025
Garage
Pull the valve cover and find the casting number to see if they’re Vortecs. And you can find a casting number on the back of the block to see if it is a roller block or look through the pushrod holes to see what lifter are in it

1974 chevelle with 73 laguna nose sbc 357 Brodix IK180 heads Comp Cams XE274H Edelbrock RPM airgap 650 AED double pumper, M20 muncie, Truetrac with 3.73s
JF74chevelle is offline  
post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old Mar 17th, 19, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
Tech Team
Richard
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: No. Nevada
Posts: 407
Re: "Support truck" engine build, 350 or 383?

Can the roller lifter "Spider" be seen without pulling the intake?

At these gas prices I want it 100+ octane, leaded, and my windshield washed!
Richard/SIA is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Chevelle Tech forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address. Note, you will be sent a confirmation request to this address.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools Search this Thread
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What engine should I build? 1966_L78 Bench Racing 23 Sep 24th, 18 12:46 PM
L34 350 HP 396 Build VORTECPRO Performance 12 Jul 16th, 15 8:55 AM
350 bored .40 over Build Help Clayton A Performance 18 May 4th, 15 10:44 AM
Identifying unknown 383 engine block boulonman Engine 8 Nov 10th, 13 3:25 PM
99 350 into a 383??? bynxr 1999 -- 5 Mar 15th, 99 4:45 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome