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Old 03-22-2012, 06:26 PM
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Which Transmission/rear end

Help please,
Which transmission/rear end combo is best for a tweaked out Chevy 235 six? My builder wants to go 350 turbo/308 gear. Others say 200r or S-10 five speed with a higher rear end gear. Others have said the 200's are poor transmissions and the old S-10 5 speeds have problems with the 5th gear and are a bear to rebuild?????? Help me out please. I have gotten input from Langdons also. The 235 has had major work and add ons, so I don't want to scrap it for a small block yet. I want to wear it out first.

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Old 03-23-2012, 08:17 AM
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My suggestion would be an S10 T5 with V8 camaro guts. Plenty of strength should you decide to go to a mild V8; and with the camaro's 2.95 1st gear you can run a 3.55 rear and get great economy in 5th. The early S-10 tail s critical as it will have the cable operated speedo and the perpendicular shifter setup (Camaro/Fireturd shifters are tipped to one side about 15 degrees)

I had a customer in Missouri with a truck similar to yours get one of our custom 2.98 1st gear M22-style 4speeds and a set of ~3.23s in his axle. Definitely overkill for his inliner, but he was talking about turbos and centrifugal superchargers at some point. He also had concerns about resale value, and if he or the new owner went to a V8, hes good up to a 502/502 with no concerns. If you'd like, you can PM me and I'll get his contact info for you. He can walk you through how he made his decision and some specifics; I know he had to find a specific bellhousing and there was some other small things we had to work through, but it came out perfect.

A cheaper, less robust solution would be a 2.88 T10 or 2.85 1st saginaw 4spd, again with something like 3.23s or 3.08s.

Lastly you could use a 3spd OD if you can find one in good repair.

RE: OD automatics, a properly built 200-4r with the requisite updates from CK Performance, "JakeShoe" etc is certainly up to just about any task you can throw at it. I prefer the 200 to the 700 due to is 1-2 spread and that its the same size as a TH350. If you had a 200-4r I wouldn't run anything less than a 3.55:1 rear.
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Old 03-23-2012, 11:40 AM
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Many thanks. My builder is talking 350 turbo and 308 gear. I think that may leave me lacking torque ant low end? I'm not beefing anything beyond what the motor has now which is cam increase and 4bl holley with dual headers. The guts of the 235 are all new, not too radical and with a .40 bore. I just want a nice driver that doesn't dog off the line and has a nice highway cruise RPM. I do see value in leaving the door open to future owners for a V-8 upgrade. My guess is the may favor a th350 trans. I would junk the whole 235, but the guy I bought the car from sunk a tan of money into intake, exhaust, rebuild, custom flow masters.... The motor sounds great and runs like the beast he built. I want to use some of those $$$ up before throwing this engine away.

Thanks for any input
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Old 03-23-2012, 11:52 AM
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theres something to be said for the Tq Convertor multiplying the torque, however 3.08 is awfully light in the loafers for MY taste. YMMV of course, but even with a 3.23 and some avg height tires, it won't be horrifying
Assuming a 3.08, 65mph and a 27" tall tire, your RPM SHOULD be a little over 2500. This isn't bad for economy...I have no idea what your 1st gear expectations are or how this will behave from a dead stop.
Move to 3.55s and you're looking at almost 2900RPMs assuming the 27" tire height and 65mph. I dont really think 500rpms is a killer; these engines were built to run with no overdrive and 3.55s. I think a lot of perception with everyone being used to their OD automatic daily driver is that 3000rpms is somehow going to kill a street car engine. I also imagine the difference in fuel consumption would take a few years to pay for a rear gear swap.
Just my thoughts
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