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Old 08-26-2010, 06:34 AM
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700R4 rebuild kit

I'm in the process of rebuilding a 700R4 tranny (1988) for the street rod (4000LBS) which now has a TH350, behind a mild SBC with under 320 hp. I searched different suppliers for prices which includes the steels, clutches, all seals and gaskets, filter,wide band, pump bushing, tail stock bushing and Torrington bearings. Some kits include Alto, Red Eagle, Kolene steels and other items. The current trans needs 2/4 band (damaged anchor) and 3/4 clutch pack. Prices range from $150 to $300. I'm sure we all prefer a certain brand over the other, but do I really need the best, well know supplier?

So what's the minimum I need and are we allowed to recommend a supplier? It was suggested that stock replacement is adequate since it's not being raced. But today's technology must be better than what was available 22 years ago. Please share your experiences based on facts. Thank you in advance for your input.

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Old 08-26-2010, 08:48 AM
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There is a wealth of information on the internet about rebuilding and improving the 700R4. There is no substitute for reading all the information you can find on the 700R4/4L60. You need to learn all the little procedures that need to be performed on it that make it near bulletproof.

Here are some suppliers I have found to be very reasonable for parts and information;
Bulkparts.com

Mako Transmission Parts

PATC

Bowtieoverdrives

Assuming no race, no 15" slicks, no BBC, street use cruiser. My advice would be to buy a good overhaul manual first, and then read it. Buy a good overhaul kit that includes a new aftermarket performance band, not a wider than stock band, an improved 3/4 clutch pack and a corvette servo minimum. Then add to that a Transgo shift kit and set it up for street. You will end up with a trans that shifts nicely and will last a long time if you keep it cool. Don't forget a good quality locking torque converter.

I'm sure there will be others that will offer more advice. Listen to what they say.

What rear gear ratio are you going to run? Have you thought about what cruise RPM you will need/want?

Good Luck! Let us know how it all turns out.
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Old 08-27-2010, 06:28 AM
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Yes, there is a plethora of information available and that's why I'm doing the rebuild myself. I have a DVD, Haynes and the OEM service manuals. I have an 86 version tranny that I disassembled an reassembled twice now just to experience the procedure as per DVD/Manual. I paid less attention to the video the 2nd time around. I have the tools including the fixture to rotate the trans as needed.
I always read that the wider band would be an improvement, yet it's not recommended. Why? So if I'm rebuilding the trans for street cruising, I don't necessarily need the RED clutches. Any other opinions? I expected more feedback based on the knowledgeable people that usually respond. Everything I read in previous threads were for street/strip set up not as much just street daily driver, that's why I'm asking. It was suggested that I'm saving the cost to outsource the rebuild, so why not spend the little extra and go for the best package. Does that make sense?
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:11 PM
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If you put a wider band on your stock drum it will burn the edges of the new wider band as your stock drum is worn down the width of the stock band. Yes, you can turn the drum down to flatten it out but then it's so thin the heat will distort it. Or, you can replace the drum with new and run the wider band. Your choice. But for street use, unless the drum is worn badly I'd just put a new after market stock width band in. It's all in how much you want to spend.

I would use some sort of 3/4 clutch upgrade regardless what you will use it for. And I'd install the shift kit to street or tow/haul mode.

I suggested the minimum I'd do, and BTW, I'm certainly not an expert, I've done three and all three still live today, thank God! But you can decide what extra you would want to spend.

A beast sun shell would be good. Upgrade to a 10 vane pump if it doesn't already have one.

Don't spend all your money on the Trans and cheap out on the converter..

Take a look at some of the big internet suppliers of 700R4 trans. See what they use in their trans at a level of performance you would be comfortable with.

What rear gear ratio do you have?
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Old 08-28-2010, 12:58 AM
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You might also check out www.oregonperformancetransmission.com one of the weak links in a 700R4 is the sun shell,replace it with "The Beast".
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Old 08-28-2010, 09:17 AM
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I keep forgetting to address the rear gear ratio. It's a 73 Camaro 10 bolt 3.08. Right now I cruise at 60mph at 2500rpm with the TH350. I like to see 1500/1600 at the same speed. That sounds logical about the band. The tranny was a GM re-manufactured replacement. The drum is very smooth and flat, just a shine where the band contacted it. The band lining is also good shape but the anchor extrusion split open and naturally it did not operate as designed. The sun shell has a large radius at the extruded collar and looks new. I compared it to the 86 tranny which has a much sharper radius at the collar. So I don't know if it's the better sun shell. Based on the damage I think the TV cable was incorrect which destroyed the 3/4 pack. The rest is in awesome condition, no foreign material on bushings, wear surfaces smooth and no show of wear, seals in perfect condition and bearings roll without resistance or feeling any small bumps. The pump already has 10 vanes. Replacing the torque converter seems to be a common advise, so it will happen. Just for my curiosity, what is it that necessitates the TC replacement?
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Old 08-28-2010, 11:04 AM
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If you are satisfied with the converter you have and the trans was not full of junk or dirt like burnt clutch material, keep it and run it. I just thought you might want a different stall. But you will not need a higher stall as long as your cam is very mild and you carry good vacuum at idle. With 3.08 gears and the low 1st gear of the 700R4, you will no doubt see the RPMs you are looking for. Good luck.
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