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caddy
04-12-04, 11:48 AM
:D I'd like to get some input from you guys/gals I have a 94 LT1 Coupe with a 6-Speed tranny, and she runs great right now but she has around 134k miles and I'm sure before long as with any vehicle I'm gonna need to replace/rebuild the engine and Tranny, what I'm curious about is weather I should replace the engine or get a short block or long block, I could use some input from those that know, I am in the Houston area so if any of you know of a place here locally that I can trust to take care of my baby? :confused
thanks

MBDiagMan
04-12-04, 01:30 PM
To begin with, I would not condemn the engine based on mileage. If it has had and continues to get frequent oil and filter changes and not driven crazy there is no telling how far the engine can go.

That said, once the time does come the answer to your question depends solely on who is building the prospective short block and who is rebuilding the existing engine.

There are many cheapo short blocks out there that aren't worth a bucket full of cold spit. At the same time there are lots of engine rebuild shops that I wouldn't turn loose on my lawn mower.

Now would be a good time to start asking friends and acquaintances about reputable shops in your area. At the same time start doing some searching, maybe on the internet for PREMIUM short blocks.

My Vette is at about 125,000 miles but still in great shape. When the time comes I will not even consider a short block because it would make the numbers no longer match. The difference is that I can do the work myself and will actually enjoy it on the Vette.

Hope this helps,

caddy
04-12-04, 03:00 PM
Thanks Doc, I appreciate your input, She actually runs very well, I've had it a little over a year and I don't know how good care the previous owner(S) took but like I said it does run good, I've done a lot to it since then brakes, rotors, brake booster, opti-spark, tires, tune up plugs, wires etc and of course I keep tabs on changeing the oil (Mobil 1) regular, the only thing is it seems to miss on occasion, after it's running for a while it runs like a new car, but when I first start it up and drive it for the first 20 or 30 minutes, when I take off from a light or stop sign it misses, any clues as to that problem?

Edmond
04-12-04, 11:20 PM
The only reasons I see to rebuild are:

1. It needs it, mechanical problems.
2. You want more performance.

I have 101K on my 88' and I'm going to rebuild because of option 2. My ole' L98 needs more oomph and I figured since I'm going to do a heads and cam, I may as well do the rest of it.

Start asking the local hotrodders who they go to for machine work. If possible, do it yourself because you know if you did it right or not.

spyysee
04-13-04, 11:49 AM
Up untill recently, my '87 was my daily driver. While I didn't really abuse it too much,
it racked up 145,000 miles before I needed any "serious" work, which was new valve
seats. At that point I did the water pump, starter motor, alternator, vacuum booster,
master cylinder and rear wheel bearings. She still pulls nicely, so not withstsnding any
catstophic events, I would leave it the f#$k alone!!
jJust my opinion.........

garycr14
04-13-04, 02:26 PM
Thanks Doc, I appreciate your input, She actually runs very well, I've had it a little over a year and I don't know how good care the previous owner(S) took but like I said it does run good, I've done a lot to it since then brakes, rotors, brake booster, opti-spark, tires, tune up plugs, wires etc and of course I keep tabs on changeing the oil (Mobil 1) regular, the only thing is it seems to miss on occasion, after it's running for a while it runs like a new car, but when I first start it up and drive it for the first 20 or 30 minutes, when I take off from a light or stop sign it misses, any clues as to that problem?
I didn't see fuel filter in the list of items you have replaced, it is often overlooked, and see the milage on your car you may want to change it. Also the air filter. You could have some deposits on a valve seat. they do sell some on the shelf type items - tune up in a can stuff that burns the deposits off of the valves.

As far as the engine is concerned it all depends on how you drive the car as to what you want to do for a replacement. There are a couple of engine builders that build crate 383 strokers for an LT1 which seems appealing to me because the performance vs cost is very good. I live in a very expensive area of the country, so labor is very costly. To have a custom built motor to similar performance levels as the crate motor would be 3 times the cost! Although I understand about wanting a numbers matching car, I don't think that our cars will ever be worth what the C1's - C2's are because they made just to darn many of them each year. They are not rare, nor do I think they ever will be. But to be on the safe side, if you replace the motor, crate up the old one in the same packing crate, and store it, then you will have the matching numbers motor availabe should the need arise.

MBDiagMan
04-13-04, 03:20 PM
I too plan on building a 383 when it comes motor time, but there's really no need to buy a crate motor to accomplish this. A few years ago, it was less common and you had to custom turn a 400 crank and find someone to supply pistons, etc. Now, however, all the components for making your engine into a 383 when you rebuild are readily available. So whoever rebuilds your engine simply substitutes one of the good 383 cranks for the original, and uses the readily available 383 pistons on the original rods. It's no longer a big deal.

This allows you to have the best of both worlds. I do believe that these cars will never be like a big block '67, but never say never. I threw away my baseball cards when I was a kid in the fifties and sixties. After all they were only just little pieces of cardboard. You just never know.

Have a great day,

garycr14
04-13-04, 03:38 PM
I too plan on building a 383 when it comes motor time, but there's really no need to buy a crate motor to accomplish this. A few years ago, it was less common and you had to custom turn a 400 crank and find someone to supply pistons, etc. Now, however, all the components for making your engine into a 383 when you rebuild are readily available. So whoever rebuilds your engine simply substitutes one of the good 383 cranks for the original, and uses the readily available 383 pistons on the original rods. It's no longer a big deal.

This allows you to have the best of both worlds. I do believe that these cars will never be like a big block '67, but never say never. I threw away my baseball cards when I was a kid in the fifties and sixties. After all they were only just little pieces of cardboard. You just never know.

Have a great day,
I agree with what you are saying about never saying never, which is why I suggested crating up the old motor, you just never know.

The parts to build the stroker are readily available, and if you have the time, space, and knowledge to rebuild the motor yourself it is cost effective. But if you are sending the job out to a shop (at least in the part of the country I ive in) it will cost $10k -$13k to have the engine built for you. You can by a crate for under $5k. Install it yourself, or pay less than a couple grand to have someone install it for you.

MBDiagMan
04-13-04, 06:47 PM
Ten to thirteen K bucks for a street 383 rebuild is absolute highway robbery. I wish I could line up all that I could build for that price. I would be retired in five years.

You are basically doing a rebuild with about $800 in extra parts. Since you would be buying pistons of some description anyway, the difference between the rebuild and the 383 is probably more like $600. The labor and the rebuild parts would be the same, only difference is the crank and pistons.

The price you talk about sounds more like an engine with no core and lots of extras, not a rebuilt 350 with substituted crankshaft and pistons.

Have a great day,

Edmond
04-13-04, 08:56 PM
You are basically doing a rebuild with about $800 in extra parts. Since you would be buying pistons of some description anyway, the difference between the rebuild and the 383 is probably more like $600. The labor and the rebuild parts would be the same, only difference is the crank and pistons.

That's my justification for going with more cubes this winter! :D