My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch - Chevelle Tech
Transmission & Driveline Transmissions and Differentials

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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 1:47 PM Thread Starter
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My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

I am replacing the clutch in my '76 C20 pickup. The truck is powered by a bone stock 350/4 barrel and shifts with a granny low 4-speed transmission. This truck is used to run errands, haul garbage and tow up to 10,000 lbs.

It's been awhile since I've replaced one of these so when I attempted to source a clutch set on Rock Auto I didn't recognize a single brand they carried. I do know the clutch is 12" diameter and I am replacing a Borg and Beck style pressure plate (which I hate) with a diaphragm pp.

Do any of you have any recommendations as to brand name and part number. I expect to spend $100 - $200 for pressure plate, disc and throwout bearing.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 2:10 PM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

I always liked standard Luk Repsets. The one in my FJ40 has been there since 2000. It's still going strong and has endured 38Ē tires, 5.29 gears with Detroits and all the rock crawling that goes along with that stuff.

I installed hundreds of them years ago and can't remember a problem that wasn't operator error.

$70 at Rock Auto. Part number L04064. Comes with a pilot bearing. I usually throw them in the weeds and use a bushing.
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76 C20 VortecPro 496 628HP 655 lb/ft TH400 Edge Converter, 4.10 14 bolt
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 2:16 PM
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Agreed, I’m a stock car/truck LUK is great. I put one in my Saturn SW2. Great quality. Make sure to get a new flywheel too.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 2:21 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by JF74chevelle View Post
Agreed, Iím a stock car/truck LUK is great. I put one in my Saturn SW2. Great quality. Make sure to get a new flywheel too.
Thanks to both of you for your recommendations. Rock Auto sells a HD LUK clutch set for $89 and change. It is also a RA recommended (heart) clutch set.

This is a low-mileage truck (50,000) and the flywheel looks great. I do have a lightly used 168 tooth billet flywheel but I'd have to check if it was drilled and tapped for a 12-inch pressure plate.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 2:33 PM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Is the heavy duty the Repset Gold? I've been out of the business for a long time but wouldn't be afraid of anything from Luk. The Golds were great too but customers usually didn't want to pay the extra few bucks. I wouldn't hesitate to turn your flywheel and reuse it if it passes a visual inspection. Sounds like it will. But definitely have it turned.

You've jogged my memory, it's a Gold in my Toyota, not the standard Repset. It's a little stiffer but not as stiff as the Marlin Crawler clutch in my truck.

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
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 4:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Thanks, Tom.

Yes, in the photo of the pressure plate it is stamped "Pro Gold" right after the letters "USA", which mean a lot to me.

I compared the flywheel I pulled from the truck to the billet wheel I have. A 12" pressure plate will bolt up just fine to the billet wheel. Also, virtually all the Blanchard finish marks are visible, so the unit has hardly been used.

As for the clutch, it is no simple task to remove and replace a truck 4-speed and clutch, even with my new 12,000 lb 2-post lift and elevated transmission jack, so I want to get it right the first time.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 5:29 PM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

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Originally Posted by Saltherring View Post
As for the clutch, it is no simple task to remove and replace a truck 4-speed and clutch, even with my new 12,000 lb 2-post lift and elevated transmission jack, so I want to get it right the first time.
Perspective is key here. I used to do backflips when I got to work on an old Chevy two wheel drive! I think book time on that is around 3.5 hours and was one of the few I could make time on. 90s Nissan 4WDs were what I seemed to do the most of and they're miserable. I couldn't come close to doing them in book time which I think was around 10 hours. I'm so glad I got out of that business....

But yes, do it right the first time. This clutch will probably outlive us both.
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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
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 7:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs down Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy the Cat View Post
Perspective is key here. I used to do backflips when I got to work on an old Chevy two wheel drive! I think book time on that is around 3.5 hours and was one of the few I could make time on. 90s Nissan 4WDs were what I seemed to do the most of and they're miserable. I couldn't come close to doing them in book time which I think was around 10 hours. I'm so glad I got out of that business....

But yes, do it right the first time. This clutch will probably outlive us both.
I guess my only question is when and why the hell did GM redesign their rear engine/transmission mounting system from one that required two bolts threaded into a cast iron bellhousing....to one with an aluminum housing and a crossmember that has 12 BOLTS on each frame rail?

The earlier design worked very well and you could remove the clutch and flywheel without removing the bellhousing, given the housing had a trap door on the bottom.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 12:31 AM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

It made too much sense!!
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 12:59 AM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tommy the Cat View Post
Perspective is key here. I used to do backflips when I got to work on an old Chevy two wheel drive! I think book time on that is around 3.5 hours and was one of the few I could make time on. 90s Nissan 4WDs were what I seemed to do the most of and they're miserable. I couldn't come close to doing them in book time which I think was around 10 hours. I'm so glad I got out of that business....

But yes, do it right the first time. This clutch will probably outlive us both.
Couldn't agree with you more about book time.Eventually they will find a way to take flat rate out of the workplace in the automotive world.

John
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 1:05 AM
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saltherring View Post
Thanks, Tom.

Yes, in the photo of the pressure plate it is stamped "Pro Gold" right after the letters "USA", which mean a lot to me.

I compared the flywheel I pulled from the truck to the billet wheel I have. A 12" pressure plate will bolt up just fine to the billet wheel. Also, virtually all the Blanchard finish marks are visible, so the unit has hardly been used.

As for the clutch, it is no simple task to remove and replace a truck 4-speed and clutch, even with my new 12,000 lb 2-post lift and elevated transmission jack, so I want to get it right the first time.
Are the flywheel's weights similar ? that granny gear may need that heavy flywheel's inertia to get a heavy load moving.

John
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406 SBC M21 3.31 12 bolt
"Quality is always remembered,long after the price is forgotten"
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Re: My 1976 C20 Needs a Clutch

The billet steel flywheel feels a bit heavier than the cast one I took out of the truck, but I haven't weighed either.

The steel wheel came out of my '69 Chevelle. I only replaced it because I had already purchased a new SFI Hays billet wheel to bolt to the rear of the new engine I had just assembled. The billet I removed from the Chevelle looks almost new, although I have no idea who manufactured or sold it, as it only has a few numbers stamped into it.
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