Front Range 4x4 Upcoming Trail Runs - Add a New Trail Run

Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Crate engines (sbc)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Crate engines (sbc)



    As part of my researching and thinking about how to move forward with the wagon...I am looking into sbc crate engine options. There are a lot of options, from short blocks to long blocks to turn keys etc, and they come in a wide range of costs. I am not looking for a performance engine, but rather a reliable user - I think even a pretty basic 190hp sbc350 will provide more than enough get up a go for my wagon and hopefully not endanger any drivetrain pieces. Any particular vendors or maybe specifically rebuilders/manufacturers that are preferred or recommended? Warranty thoughts? Better to go with short block and add-on the heads and intake etc that I want (or possibly re-use what I have), or go long block or turn key? Just trying to price out a reasonable estimates.

    If I go this route, I certainly would want to consider fuel injection - probably as a TBI set-up. That of course, would possibly mean figuring out a fuel tank/pump set-up, or could I used a frame rail mounted pump with oem style tank/pickup. FiTech also has their 'commander' system as well. Another added consideration with TBI set-ups I think is a new intake - not sure if the spread bore/Qjet would be useable (probably with an adapter), or maybe its best to just go with square bore intake, or just go with a fully assembled TBI motor?

    your thoughts are appreciated....and I am not saying this is the chosen route for the wagon, this is just researching one of the options.
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Member
    #1596
    Last Online
    6 Hours Ago
    Location
    Timnath
    4x4
    2012 Rock Ware Buggy & 2007 JKUR
    Posts
    1,464
    User Name
    newracer
    Real Name
    Michael
    Thanks Given
    154
    Thanked 622 Times in 382 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    How about a junkyard 5.3 or 6.0? That's what a lot of buggy guys do.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    newracer previously posted:
    "How about a junkyard 5.3 or 6.0? That's what a lot of buggy guys do."

    Because of my limited skill, I'd like to replace the existing sbc (283) with something that will essentially bolt right in and already is set-up to use with existing old stuff like the motor mounts and T90 and D18. I don't want to go into swapping the entire drivetrain, trying to weld engine mounts, cross-member mounting, new driveshafts, and possibly risk breakage with components designed for 120 gross hp..... Also, I hope I can re-use some of the stuff I have already have fixed up (i.e. spent money on) like the breakerless distributor, 60A alternator, PS pump, radiator and fan, qjet carb, spread bore intake etc...My budget is really limited....when it comes to junkyard/used stuff, I don't seem to know what I am looking for, and it seems I pull parts that end up being too used to be very functional - or my skill is too limited to make work. I'd hate to buy another bad used engine...I already bought one with this stupid wagon to begin with.
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Member
    #1596
    Last Online
    6 Hours Ago
    Location
    Timnath
    4x4
    2012 Rock Ware Buggy & 2007 JKUR
    Posts
    1,464
    User Name
    newracer
    Real Name
    Michael
    Thanks Given
    154
    Thanked 622 Times in 382 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    The smallest, a 4.8, does put out 255 hp. I think it would bolt right in as they are still based on the original 350. But as you pointed out you probably couldn't use all your already replaced components. You would however get a modern reliable engine with fuel injection.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    I wonder if I could find a good 305 with TBI in a JY....At one time those were probably plentiful, but some of that stuff hasn't been around for 20+ years and can't imagine a junker engine would be any good at this point.
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Member
    #2586
    Last Online
    3 Days Ago
    Location
    Westminster
    4x4
    2020 Wrangler Rubicon 2dr
    Posts
    313
    User Name
    TyTheJeepGuy
    Real Name
    Ty
    Thanks Given
    188
    Thanked 146 Times in 89 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    I am selling the Grand Cherokee, after just rebuilding its 5.7L Hemi. I've been wondering if maybe I should just sell the drivetrain out of it after watching a tv show where they put it in an old Kaiser. Sounds like more HP and effort than you're looking for though, I just think a Hemi wagon would be awesome

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Member
    #921
    Last Online
    2 Hours Ago
    Location
    Fort Collins
    4x4
    1990 Jeep Wrangler (YJ)
    Posts
    8,935
    User Name
    Jim
    Real Name
    Jim Williamson
    Thanks Given
    1,892
    Thanked 2,522 Times in 1,671 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    light to light sleeper!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    IceBox Ty previously posted:
    "I just think a Hemi wagon would be awesome"

    The thing about swapping in such an engine in an old wagon is that everything else has to be changed as well....The t90 transmission can't handle too much power although if you are reasonable with the skinny pedal you can make it last with low end v8 power - but modern v8 power will crush it. One thing to think about is when jeep went to the Dauntless V6, the T90 was replaced - first with the T86 and then the T14. Honestly, I think all 3 of those 3 speeds are about the same, but the later two were synchro'd in all 3 gears and helical whereas the T90 is non-synchro etc. The T90 was designed in the late 1940s! The other really weak spot is the front D25 axle - it was upgraded to the D27 when the v6 came out. Of course, if you don't put a traction device in it, it can survive for a while. The rear D44 is reasonably strong, but its the old 2 piece design that isn't as strong as many people think based on today's D44. The D18 transfer case is pretty darn strong - certainly v8 strong - but even today, with modern 300+ hp engines, the D300 is standard (if not an Atlas II). Of course, some of that is also the size of the tires....160hp turning unlocked 30-31 inch tires compared to 300+ hp turning locked 37-40's....And finally, big engines get things moving fast - but you have to be able to stop them as well. So for me, with all original drivetrain and brake components, slightly bigger tires, a low end v8 is still pushing the limits of the components. Heck, even the open C-channel frame will struggle to stay rigid with modern v8 power. People like to say old jeeps never broke - that is because they didn't have enough engine to break anything.....most of the old jeeps and willys originally came with the L or F 134 (64-75hp GROSS! - not net, but gross hp). The 226 L6 that came in the wagon was the upgrade and produced 120 gross hp - that would be more like 100hp net using todays rating system.

    Basically, many wagons end up as bodies on a blazer frame with modern running gear and axles etc....To each their own, but to me then its just like driving a more modern truck and has lost its soul. When I drive a 60 year old vehicle, I think it should feel like its a 60 year old vehicle. I am hesitant to put in too modern of a crate engine - both for too much power concerns and because I don't want to loose the willys soul. We all find our sweet spot with old vehicles...I am happy to keep it mostly original, but their are things that can be done to make it reliable and usable but don't sacrifice its soul (not to mention may just be a safety necessity in todays world) - I think I have done well with the cj in that regard. Some brake and ignition upgrades, but its still manual drum brakes, through the floor pedals, mechanical clutch, carb with manual choke, mechanical distributor but with hidden breakerless ignition (pertronix instead of points), manual steering, lifted but original width, SUA, inboard leaf springs, low back seats etc...The wagon on the other hand already had some upgrades (sbc v8, power steering) - obviously when I bought it, I knew that and was thinking I would appreciate that and make some more modern upgrades....but now I kind of am regretting that, and wishing it was a bit more original. At least the sbcv8 was of the same vintage (1957 283), but its added a lot of hassle to the project. And honestly, I am not sure what I think about the power steering - kind of like the manual except when offroad wheeling hard trails, and this wagon isn't going to be for hard core wheeling. Its all good - everyone gets to build them how they like. To me, the hard part is figuring out how I want to build mine....
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    I've been doing some research on crate engines as well as working with a local shop about rebuilding the current sbc283...and of course, I am still hoping maybe I can salvage the sbc 283 as is without dumping much more money into it.....I also was looking at CL and the like for a sbc to see what may be out there (since I don't think I will find what I want in a junkyard), but it feels like I would really be rolling the dice for an engine off CL. And while I don't know if sellers get anywhere near their asking price, seems like most that have any hope of being runners, and not just cores for rebuilds, are in the $800-1000 range. A brand new (not remanufactured) JEGS crate engine (rebranded GM Performance motor) is in the $1700 range, plus some add-ons like a new flywheel (needed for the newer 1 piece RMS) and some various accessory brackets. My thoughts are the crate engine with 3yr/100,000 mile warranty is the better deal.

    As for rebuilding the engine, I worked with Spitfire for the 225V6 (no direct swap crate options) - and they did a nice job as far as I can tell, and I've used it pretty hard since. They also charged a premium price for rebuild and machine work compared to other places, and they typically don't like to do partial work, or only machine work - its kind of all or nothing in terms of engine work with them. Rebuilding the 283 wouldn't be as expensive as the v6 (sbc parts are mass produced in a huge range of performance options, and cheap compared to the rare odd fire v6), but its still more than the JEGS crate 350 (estimate $2000-2500 and typically less warranty). Another downside of the 283 is that its short stroke lends itself to good high rpm performance and lots of hp (it was one of the first engines to produce 1hp/cubic inch of displacement - albeit with early form of fuel injection), but its definitely not a strong low rpm, torque filled engine. Especially if its already been bored .030 over, and it gets bored .030 over again (for .060 over total and around 292 ci displacement), the common higher performance aftermarket heads with larger combustion chamber cause the CR to drop even more (below 9:1) and reduce low end performance even more. Using the oem heads is fine, but expensive to get the head work done, and they don't have any of the common accessory bracket mounting holes common on most later sbcs. Aftermarket, high performance, low volume combustion chamber heads are available (and even in aluminum which is really nice) that will keep the CR above 9.5:1, but still talking about the main power range in the 3000-5000rpm - good for some applications, but not that ideal for an old willys wagon. At the same time, even with the relatively poor low end performance compared to other sbcv8's - its still probably a pretty noticeable improvement over the oem L6, and they can run quite fuel efficient - especially with a 2bbl or spread bore (Qjet) carb. The final thought on this, I would like to be more hands on with an engine build one of these days, and this could be a good option if I can find a good machine shop to just to do the bottom end, and I can finish the top end with new heads etc....

    And then today, another option came around....An early cj contact/friend down in the Springs offered me a rebuilt and lightly used (1200 miles) 350 that has sat for 5 years for $500 (including the engine stand). Supposedly it was a pretty standard build for a C10 truck or similar, but then the owner came across a big block and went all out on the build. My friend got the engine and set it aside for a Scout build that has progressed slowly and stalled as the son lives out of state now. In some ways, this is a bit risky - kind of like buying a junker - but I trust this contact a lot more than most sellers. Some of the parts on my CJ are from this contact (brake upgrades, exhaust manifolds), and he has built 2 superb flatfenders, is working on a 3rd cj, as well as built a sweet classic mustang for his wife. He's the one that has put TBI on all of his oddfire motors and has a pretty sweet system for it that I hope to copy one day. He also has been really generous with his knowledge, time and small parts for lots of local cj folks including myself. In other words, if I am going to buy a lightly used engine, this would probably be the best bet....

    Choices....new crate engine, rebuild the existing 283, lightly used 350 from a mostly trustworthy source.....hmmmm.....
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Member
    #1118
    Last Online
    1 Day Ago
    Location
    Aurora
    Age
    66
    4x4
    03 Ranger FX4
    Posts
    5,911
    User Name
    The StRanger
    Real Name
    Sam
    Thanks Given
    102
    Thanked 520 Times in 457 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    After all the Crap Ive been Through on this 89 Ranger Id go with rather a direct bolt in swap or pick up a whole downer truck....
    this chasin little sh!t is a real pain in da azz...
    ___________
    In a never ending search for the proper mix of dirt & rock !

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Member
    #1546
    Last Online
    2 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Age
    43
    4x4
    1970CJ5-1958WillysWagon-2010Tacoma
    Posts
    3,299
    User Name
    FINOCJ
    Real Name
    James Orofino
    Thanks Given
    1,068
    Thanked 1,337 Times in 802 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    The StRanger previously posted:
    "Id go with rather a direct bolt in swap"

    It was already swapped to a sbc and mated to everything else....so the most direct bolt in swap is another sbc. Just gotta figure out the best choice.
    ___________
    James Orofino
    1970 CJ5
    1958 Willys Wagon
    2010 Tacoma TRD

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Member
    #1118
    Last Online
    1 Day Ago
    Location
    Aurora
    Age
    66
    4x4
    03 Ranger FX4
    Posts
    5,911
    User Name
    The StRanger
    Real Name
    Sam
    Thanks Given
    102
    Thanked 520 Times in 457 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    If your lookin for performance go with the 383 stroker.
    for crawling Id go with a stock, truck crate engine from like Napa or Advanced..
    ___________
    In a never ending search for the proper mix of dirt & rock !

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Member
    #853
    Last Online
    31 Minutes Ago
    Location
    Denver
    4x4
    LJ, Xterra
    Posts
    6,943
    User Name
    Paul
    Real Name
    Paul
    Thanks Given
    1,888
    Thanked 1,599 Times in 1,116 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    I'd look at a 4.3 V6 http://www.novak-adapt.com/knowledge...small-block-v6 it would bolt right in, give you more room for your fan and (probably) won't grenade your drivetrain. they are plentiful and cheap, GM put those in everything for a while.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Member
    #1420
    Last Online
    5 Hours Ago
    Location
    Nederland
    4x4
    05 4Runner
    Posts
    1,037
    User Name
    jayson44
    Real Name
    Jay
    Thanks Given
    71
    Thanked 163 Times in 123 Posts

    Default Re: Crate engines (sbc)



    go with the 350 from your buddy. that seems like the best bang for your buck!

    J.
    ___________
    05 4Runner Sport - 3" lift, 35s & v8 POWA!

Similar Threads

  1. Modular Integrated Deck engines
    By Patrolman in forum Tech Links
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: April 30th, 2015, 08:57 PM
  2. PetSafe Wireless Electric Fence, XL Double Door Crate, Pet Ramp
    By Fatboris in forum For Sale, Wanted, Trade, Free
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: May 20th, 2014, 10:13 AM
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: January 21st, 2012, 08:34 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
BACK TO TOP