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Old 07-20-2012, 05:07 PM
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Buying GM Vortec Crate Engine need some advise

Hey guys I finally have the $$$ to order an engine I was just wondering about a few of the parts ill be needing for the install. Im getting Chevrolet Performance 12530283 Chevrolet Performance 1996-2000 Truck 350ci L31-R Long Block Assembly
Its a 4 bolt roller vortec crate from jegs 1830$ and free shipping this month

Im going to be putting it into my 1974 stepside. when i go to oreilies and type in flexplate for 1996 silverado it brings up flexplates for the engine just they all say only warrentied with 4l80e but will they work with my TH375? also internal/external balance, 168/153 tooth, 10.75"/11.5"??? all the options are throwing me off. what one should i get and will it work with my current pre 86 starter or will i have to get a specific one for this new vortec engine?

another thing im wondering is what intake to get should i get an idle-5500 intake or 1500-6500 pretty much should i get a preformer or rpm, street warrior or stealth? Just not sure if the higher rpm intakes would be good on my barely modified crate vortec engine.

Im leaving the lame cam stock so i dont void the warranty just yet. ill freshen it up and do a cam swap and head work later on down the road after i get my fill of the waranty

Thanks for taking the time to read
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Old 07-20-2012, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GUITAR1989 View Post
Hey guys I finally have the $$$ to order an engine I was just wondering about a few of the parts ill be needing for the install. Im getting Chevrolet Performance 12530283 Chevrolet Performance 1996-2000 Truck 350ci L31-R Long Block Assembly
Its a 4 bolt roller vortec crate from jegs 1830$ and free shipping this month

Im going to be putting it into my 1974 stepside. when i go to oreilies and type in flexplate for 1996 silverado it brings up flexplates for the engine just they all say only warrentied with 4l80e but will they work with my TH375? also internal/external balance, 168/153 tooth, 10.75"/11.5"??? all the options are throwing me off. what one should i get and will it work with my current pre 86 starter or will i have to get a specific one for this new vortec engine?

another thing im wondering is what intake to get should i get an idle-5500 intake or 1500-6500 pretty much should i get a preformer or rpm, street warrior or stealth? Just not sure if the higher rpm intakes would be good on my barely modified crate vortec engine.

Im leaving the lame cam stock so i dont void the warranty just yet. ill freshen it up and do a cam swap and head work later on down the road after i get my fill of the waranty

Thanks for taking the time to read
For a flex plate you need GM part 14088761. This is for Vortec/Swirl Port Gen I engines with the one piece rear seal. The change in the crank flange requires a small amount of balance weight be added outside on the flywheel or flexplate. Technically this makes the engine externally balanced but this is nowhere close to that required by some 383 strokers or all 400's. The Vortec also doesn't use an externally balanced damper on the front like the 383 stroker and 400. But you get the correct damper with the long block you ordered so aside from its good data to know this isn't a problem for you. This is a 168 tooth wheel. Your current starter will work but the new mini starters are miles ahead in cranking power and reliability. This flex plate is drilled for both bolt circle diameters or 10.75 or 11.5 inches. This flexplate will work for a 700R4, 4L60, 4L60E, or 4L80E and the variations of each and will all work with the TH350/375 or the TH400 converter.

The Vortec has a roller cam it is quite a bit better timing wise than the flat tappets before it. Especially if you're thinking of adding more cam down the road, I'd go with the Edlebrock Performer RPM. Yes it surrenders a small amount of torque on the bottom end, but it is way better from 1500 RPMs up than the regular Performer.

Bogie
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Old 07-20-2012, 06:06 PM
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Nice thanks for the info man thats just what i was looking for, I actually just placed the order for my fuel pump, weiand intake and vortec 4 bolt roller crate engine!!!! Ive been wanting to get this for a lonnnnnng time now,,
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Old 07-21-2012, 12:10 AM
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let me know how things turn out cause i have a 86 chevy truck and i eventually wanna go crate vortec
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Old 07-21-2012, 05:49 AM
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I can't help you on your flexplate issue, I just want to comment on that engine........

That is by far the best "crate" deal out there right now. I saw it in Jegs, and it's a little hidden gem amongst the other engines. 4-bolt main, 1-piece rear main seal, roller cam, 9.4-1 compression, vortec heads. The only thing I don't like is it has no mechanical fuel pump provision but that is not a big deal. That motor was around 260hp from the factory if my memory is correct. If you have the ambition, pop in a slightly hotter camshaft while the engine is out. Those heads will respond very well.

COMP Cams 08-412-8 - COMP Cams Xtreme Energy Camshafts - Overview - SummitRacing.com

COMP Cams 08-502-8 - COMP Cams Xtreme Energy Camshafts - Overview - SummitRacing.com
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Old 07-21-2012, 07:20 AM
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Yeah I want a different cam but putting one in would void the GM Warranty so Im going to wait to do any modifications to the engine.

I actually have another question for you guys Ive seen some pretty horrific pics of the plastic vortec intake manifold gaskets melting and I was wondering what intake manifold gasket you guys suggest using to seal the vortecs to the Weiand manifold. Ive seen suggestions of FEL-PRO MS98000T and FEL-PRO 1255 gaskets. Anybody know the best gasket to use?

also do any of you guys know if it voids the warranty if I install the engine myself and not a professional?

Thanks for the responses
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Old 07-21-2012, 06:36 PM
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For the exact limitations and terms of the GM engine warranty you need to read the fine print of the written warranty.

Reguardless any all evidence of engine overheating, lack of oil, detontation, improper engine installation incorrect ignition timing, lack of fuel octane etc etc
can and will be blamed on the end user as un warrantied engine abuse.

You can have a GM dealer service dept check over and certify correct engine install,,, BEFORE fireing up the engine in the car. (at your cost).
call the GM dealer you bought the crate motor from.
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Old 07-21-2012, 06:42 PM
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I use the felpro 1255 gasket when installing a carbed intake to vortec heads.
Do not use the OEM GM intake bolts when not using the OEM GM intake gasket.
be sure the intake bolts you do use are the correct length.
I use stainless bolts and stainless flat washers.
Retorking the bolts is required. use black Permetex in the china walls of the block.
be sure the china walls are clean and oil free. Leave the Black Permatex to cure overnight before fireing the engine.
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Old 07-21-2012, 06:44 PM
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i'm very interested in this engine myself.

Is there a definitive way to find out if the cam on these engines has the fuel pump lobe drive or not?
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Old 07-21-2012, 06:49 PM
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Originally Posted by against all odds View Post
i'm very interested in this engine myself.

Is there a definitive way to find out if the cam on these engines has the fuel pump lobe drive or not?
if not just use a Carter P4070 in line elect fuel pump and a common in line paper element fuel filter. No pressure reg is required.
Simple and low cost and reliable.
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Old 07-21-2012, 07:42 PM
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That's the fuel pump I ordered with my engine. I was wondering.. Since the pressure put out by this pump is fine for my carb and there's no need for a regulator do I not need a fuel return line so it doesn't heat up?

I'm honestly really thinking about a cam swap. Since I don't want to fork over my hard earned cash for a "professional" install and don't wanna pay to have my truck towed to a place and pay for inspection...I kinda wanna just say screw the warranty and get a good cam and spring set. I'm not gonna get to into that till I can get an answer from a gm rep about if me doing the install voids the warranty.
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Old 07-21-2012, 07:53 PM
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The carter fuel pump is one of the few pumps that is designed for full time street duty and runs fine in a dead head confiuration , without a fuel return line.
The motor is cooled by the fuel. It has a self regulating internal bypass.

Put the filter before the pump to keep the junk out. Change the filter once a year.

Rubber isolation mount the pump for quietest operation.
GMPP sells this same fuel pump.

The stock OEM vortec valve springs are not suitable for a high perf cam or extended rpm and the valve guide bosses need machining for valve lift beyond about .450-.460" (you have to measure that spec yourself on your vortec heads.) The OEM pressed in vortec rocker studs usually do not give problems like the old stock heads did. (with reasonable steetable perf springs and valve lift)
There are various ways to modify the valvetrain for high perf cams but they all cost money and require work on your part.
In a truck it will run very nicely with the stock OEM cam in it. Not every motor needs a big cam.

The LT4 HOT cam and LS-6 valve springs would be hot with a RPM intake, 750 carb, headers and some gears and a high stall.
Shave the heads .040" and reinstall with a .015" head gasket to boost the CR for the Hot cam.

.491" lift with stock 1.5 vortec rockers. Might be able to just ghetto grind the comp #787-16 retainers for seal clearance or use the chrysler 2.2L valve seals.

Last edited by F-BIRD'88; 07-21-2012 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 07-22-2012, 07:02 AM
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Whatever cam you use, don't get confused by hot rod articles for the older SBC and get carried away with initial timing advance. On the older SBC 350 with poor flowing heads many folks tried very advanced initial timing. Factory setting was only 4-8 degrees, but using a base timing of 12 or more (up to about 18) was very common. However, the Vortec heads don't have the same flow characteristics and high base timing is not a good idea.

Bruce
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:17 PM
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Just my 2 cents,
If your using a stock rear gear in that truck(just fine), I would stick with the cam that comes with the crate engine, stock convertor, add performer vortec(or similar) dual plane intake, 600cfm Holley vacum secondary carb, and 1-5/8" headers with 2-1/2" dual exhaust. Limit max timing to 34 degrees.
You don't need the higher horsepower that comes with a larger cam(or reduced milage) in a truck. They don't handle all that well at high speed.
I beleive that you would be happy with the zero to sixty mph acceleration, off idle torque, and great throttle response. If you just want the sound of a bigger cam, thats another story.
Give it a try while you already have it.
Like I said, just my 2 cents.
Good luck,
ssmonty
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Old 07-22-2012, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 75gmck25 View Post
Whatever cam you use, don't get confused by hot rod articles for the older SBC and get carried away with initial timing advance. On the older SBC 350 with poor flowing heads many folks tried very advanced initial timing. Factory setting was only 4-8 degrees, but using a base timing of 12 or more (up to about 18) was very common. However, the Vortec heads don't have the same flow characteristics and high base timing is not a good idea.

Bruce
you car confusing idle timing with timing at WOT higher rpm.

Just so ya know my vortec 400 runs 36deg BTDC idle timing and runs 36deg timing AT wot. It runs best with 36deg timing, same as the old heads.
The higher valve overlap (big cam with generous duration and overlap) requires a lot more idle timing than stock.
Thus the 36deg timing at idle.

When you change the camshaft the timing requirements change especially the timing at idle.

The stock truck L31 vortec motors had very conservative timing because they are tuned to run on crap 87 octane gas, and operate under varyng heavy duty conditions where the truck may be under heavy extended engine load like towing etc. GM has no control of the quality of the fuel used so they tune them conservative. The older truck motors like say a 1969 or 1975 350 C10 will have very similar conservative spark timing usually not more than 32deg spark advance @WOT. and a slower advance curve.

You don;t tune on the edge when you know the thing will be run long and hard under less than ideal conditions and less than ideal gas in the tank.
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