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horvath 02-11-2003 10:14 PM

Gear Drive??
I just got me a '54 Chevy pickup ... it's in great shape and was put together nicely - 350 w/gear drive, Edelbroke manifold, Q-jet carb, electric choke and pull-off, headers, 350 turbo trans, 12 bolt Chevy rear, gas tank moved under the bed ... I love this truck!

But -- I haven't got a clue what a gear drive is all about!
Can someone explain why I might not want to swap it out? Personally, I like to listen to my engine while I'm driving, and tho' my mechanic says this is the quietest gear drive he's ever heard, the "whining" isn't to my liking.

I've never heard of a gear drive before. What's the diff?


Alan Horvath
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Acoustic Rock ... for real.

slider 02-11-2003 10:21 PM

A gear drive replaces the timing chain and sprokets at the front of the engine. It is usually used when a camshaft can utilize a fair amount of valve spring pressure as there is no way for it to stretch and therefore retard the valve events. Using this setup to drive a mild street cam is a personal choice. Some guys just like them and are willing to put up with the minor gear whine. They are quite a bit more costly than the usual chain and sprocket arrangement, so that may figure in your decision.


horvath 02-11-2003 11:52 PM

Thanks, Slider

So ... would it be unwise for me to lose the gear drive and go with a timing chain, etc?

Would the engine or mild cam perform any differently without the gear drive?

andybird 02-12-2003 12:34 AM

as slider said, it's a personal choice;
I would stick with the gear drive as it doesn't stretch and will outlast any timing chain and will withstand more torque (although typically they don't like to be revved as high e.g. &gt; 6000rpm, but I doubt you'll be re-building your truck to rev high anyway).

However, you could sell the gear drive as second hand and probably get enough to buy a brand new high spec timing chain.

Either way it won't change the performance or running of your engine...

horvath 02-12-2003 01:13 AM

Thanks, AndyBird

This bulletin board is the BEST!!! 02-12-2003 06:27 AM

Chevy straight 6s have been using gear drives for nigh-on 80 years and haven't done too shabby!

nickel333 02-12-2003 07:01 AM

If you dont like the whine, change the gear drive to a chain, sell the gear drive. With your performance level its not going to make a difference.

horvath 02-12-2003 11:14 AM

Thanks again, guys.

If I had a straight-6 I'd probably keep the gear drive ... but this engine roars pretty sweet and I want to listen!

So ... how do you normally go about selling something like a used gear drive? Ebay? It's only got 19,000 miles on it, too.

nickel333 02-12-2003 12:07 PM

what kind of gear drive is it? Pete jackson? Edelbrock? dynagear? Is it a noisy or quiet one? {There are 2 different styles} let me know.

horvath 02-12-2003 06:46 PM

It's the "quietest gear drive" my mechanic has ever heard.

I won't know what kind it is until we swap it out ... I'm in no rush about it -- probably get to it by Summer -- but I'll keep you posted.

Thanks, bro'.

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