1st tech Post (probably discussed to death) T350 and 700R4 conundrum
Well I've driven the 700R4 and must say its a nice tranny, never owned one though...always had T350/400's in my stuff, that said I have a friend of mine getting ready to sell one of his Novas (63) that has a 700R4 installed, the tranny has all the pertenent upgrades to eleminate the weak areas of the trans (reverse drum, vette servos, shift kit etc) approx 8k miles on the trans. He offered a trans swap across the board (my 350 for his 700) as he's going to sell his car as long as I do the work. that said I'm at a impass... my T350 has an unknown # of miles on it but performs flawlessly....but my gas milage aint so hot. I can drop the 350 out of my 50 chevy within an hour, but due to space considerations it'll most likly take half a day just to get his out...I've done all the measurements and besides moving mounts and shortening a driveline (seems that the 700R is approx 31" and my T350 is approx 28" from end to end) At this point my gut tells me to back away as to not follow the road of murphys law and tear into a friends car and have to get it going again in such a short amount of time. that said the call of a 4 speed and the gas milage improvements with a known history tranny say screw the murphys law biz and go for it as he doesnt mind if I take all the pertinent gear (TV cables/brackets etc) from the 700R....that said I've never worked on the 700R and I'm not quite understanding of the electric side of the trans (he has a simple on/off switch controlling the OD)
Basically what I'm looking for is third party views, an outside look. Is it as simple as I'm thinking? any problems I've not thought about? (I have a lokar shifter and can get a conversion kit for the 700R) Flexplates? what about them? OR leave his sled alone and get a gear vendors overdrive unit in a year or two?
My motor is a mild 400HP 350 pre-smog/202 camelbacks really nothing exeptionaly special
are you sure that the switch is OD or a convertor lockup? Its probably the lockup switch, there isn't much to the 700 electronically wise, except for the lockup,
i wouldn't do it, because from what you said your going to have to modify both cars drivetrains and mounts to get the different transmission in, thats alot of time and work, you might as well buy a used 700 for yourself and save the double work and money to fix both
i would go 700 over 350, and the parts he has installed aren't really worth all the work of fixing 2 cars
I bought my core for $75, spent another $400 in parts, and I meen lots of parts! When its done, hopefully it will last many years. Doing one conversion is bad enough, but i'd never do two unless it was a brand new high dollar super duper whiz bang trans. No matter how you cut it, its a lot of work.
The early 700R you could install the on/off switch to the trans to lock up the converter. I would go for the change. I have also been told by a friend who builds transmissions that the stock 200r is stronger than the stock 700R so you might want to look into that.
ive had the same 700r4 in my little jalopy (76 ventura) since 1996... spent 150 on the core, another 400 or so in parts, eliminated the torque converter lockup (i run a hughes non lockup converter), and had the driveshaft shortened.dont remember what i spent for that, but it wasnt that much. my car at best, b4 i put in the 700r4, would get maybe 15 on the highway (4 barreled inline 6), since the 700r4 install, i have gotten up to 23 mpg... and that was driving to the east coast and back... if built right, obviously they will last... and they can handle some beating., cause i have been tough on mine... lol
i keep it maintained, it gets serviced every year/10,000 miles (dads rule of thumb from his shop, retired now.) that i have done with my cars since i could drive and have had no problems.
save urself the hassel of the r&r or the gear vendors unit and go with a well built 700.... i know ive been glad i did for years now.. got 1 ive prepped for the wifes car too. (72 ventura but with a 307). gonna be the same as what was done to mine.. after all, after 10+ years on my 700 and going strong, why not??? gl on ur venture... :thumbup:
I had a 56 Studebaker wagon with a fairly strong 350. Started with a TH350 and 3:55 8 inch rear. 80 MPH was about 3400 RPM, ran warm with AC on. Switched to 700R4, ran 2500 RPM and was quieter and ran cool. That sold me on 700R4's.
Put a 700R4 in my 71 Chevy Pickup. Had it built for towing. Between my truck and trailer (full), they weight 11,000 lbs+. Works flawlessly.
That said, I agree that I would rather just buy a core and install one tranny. TV cable hookup is CRITICAL.
With my Stewed, the 350 had a 9" tail, was the same length as the 700, so I had no driveshaft issues.
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