WHat's a 283 good for? WHat kinda gas mileage? Your opinion needed! - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 01-28-2003, 09:43 PM
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Post WHat's a 283 good for? WHat kinda gas mileage? Your opinion needed!

I'm not kidding, I am serious. I drove 3 very similar Chevy trucks, one with a 350, one with a 305 and one with a 250 cubic inch 6 cylinder. In my opinion, the 305 was pretty ho-hum as engines went, not sure it was as peppy as the 250 cubic inch 6 cylinder!

So - here's my question: I have an old mid-fifties Ford pickup that a previous owner set up for a small block Chevy engine and TH-350 automatic tranny. The existing 350 engine is tired, has problems and needs replacement. I was gonna hot rod the thing up all the way, but right now it looks like I'm gonna need commuting transportation to get to myself to work every day in this truck for quite a while, so my motivation has changed, I'd like something sort of peppy that gets pretty good gas mileage! I have choice between a 305, or a number of 283's available in my area, often for as low as $250 to $350 per engine (no one seems to want the 283's where I am). I know I can get some cool Corvette valve covers etc. for the 283, carb, etc. but I don't know what to expect performance-wise or gas-mileage wise either.

Can anyone enlighten me? Will I get the same kind of gas mileage I get in my '75 Chevy pickup with a 250 cubic inch 6 cylinder with 1 bbl Rochester carb.(which I personally like - a nice peppy engine with good torque and decent gas mileage, it gets an all around thumbs-up from me) OR will I just have a gutless, gas-hoggy engine? Please let me know YOUR experiences with this engine! And what you recommend, 305 or 283. Thanks very much!
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Old 01-29-2003, 03:19 AM
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Aaahhh, the sweet running little 283!! Nice for a daily driver and should be as economical as you sick cylinder unless you stick a big 4 barrel on it and keep a heavy foot to listen to it scream and suck lots of air. With the right rear end,2 barrel carb and sensible throttle control you can expect near 18 mpg.

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Old 01-29-2003, 05:37 AM
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A sensibly built 283 will be a great pickup motor, they won't make gobs of torque for towing, but for everyday spirited driving they are great. The will wind up quickly and are economical. (steel crank too if you want to go a bit further)
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Old 01-29-2003, 05:45 AM
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You shouldn't have any problem getting 15-20 miles per gallon out of a 283 in a pickup. I get 23 MPG out of my Ford 289 and it has two 4 barrel carbs, as long as I keep my foot out of it. Use a Quadrajet with small primaries and large secondaries or a Edlebrock Carb in the 500-600 CFM range.
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Old 01-29-2003, 01:50 PM
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I drove a 1966 impala conv. for 4 years, with a 283 engine and a PG trans, just standard 2 barrel, single exhaust, everything just plain standard, i never had a smoother running engine, and avaraged a gas milage of 20/22 mpg, i really love those small motors.

if you are planning to use one for everyday driving i would recomend it.

it is not a powerhouse but as long as you dón't put too big a carb on it it will get you moving plenty.

regards bas
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Old 01-29-2003, 03:19 PM
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good for up to 8000 rpm.
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Old 01-29-2003, 03:34 PM
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i would definately get the 283. it has better block, crank and heads than a 305 and milaege will be between 22 stock and 15 with fourbarell and teenage driveing.

you will need lower rearend gears for heavy towing but id go for the 283
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Old 01-29-2003, 04:26 PM
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I have a 283 in my 1940 Ford coupe. Straight drive with 3.78 rear end gears, 16-18 MPG on the highway and 14 mpg around local.

A 283 is easier to cool, start and keep fuel in that just about any SBC. I have a 500cfm Edelbrock on a old aluminum intake.



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Old 01-30-2003, 03:54 PM
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Sweet lookin setup, Deuce Roadster. What's that plate sitting under your carb?
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Old 01-30-2003, 04:04 PM
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[ January 30, 2003: Message edited by: edubois ]</p>
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Old 01-30-2003, 05:17 PM
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[quote]Originally posted by bluesman123:
<strong>Sweet lookin setup, Deuce Roadster. What's that plate sitting under your carb?</strong><hr></blockquote>



The plate under the carb is a heat shield. It keeps the heat from the 283 from rising up and cooking the gas in the carb. Helps starting when you crank the car back up after a short time of sitting. Available from most speed shops ( Summit, Jegs and others ). Mine is a Chevrolet performance Catalog item.......has a GM part #.

Cool fuel is good fuel
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Old 11-19-2008, 11:53 PM
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I know this post is super old but I had something to add.
I drove a 283 in a 69 1/2 ton pickup w/3.73 gears & 3 speed standard trans.
It was a bone stock 195hp engine out of a 67 chevelle (67,000) miles.
I put 2" pipes on the ram horn manifolds 6' long into stock 87 pickup mufflers.
That truck was a runner but would run out of gas.
When I first got it running it would get 17mpg.
By the time I was done "flogging" it after a year or so it'd get 12.
I was a punk with a lead foot.
I have great memories of that 283 & the 250 inline 6 that I swapped out for the little v8.
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Old 11-20-2008, 08:30 AM
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There is another sbc you can use and get a little more torque. It's identical to the 283 except it has 1/4" longer stroke. It's the 307sbc. With the right setup you can get good gas milage and low end torque for hauling.
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Old 11-20-2008, 09:15 AM
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I have a 305sbc in a swb C-10 with headers, holley, and a very good set of centerbolt heads not sure casting number on those heads, th350, 3:73 gears, 40 series 2 3/4in flowmaster mufflers. My buddies swear that its a 350sbc. I get about 17mpg without my foot in it but I cant help listening to that sweat muffler sound. Not for sure of the 283 but I love my 305 and I drive her to work everyday.

Last edited by BowTie74; 11-20-2008 at 09:25 AM.
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Old 11-20-2008, 12:32 PM
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283 Sbc

Hey man, I can tell you I have had several 305's, Infact I have 2 now sittin in the garage floor collecting dust. Not to whack them, They make fine daily drivers, But really lack in the performance area.
I have a 283 in my truck right now and I love that little *****. My uncle built it in 96 with F/T pistons+ .030, 601 closed chamber heads, and a 268 cam,wieand dual plane intakeand holley 600 80457 and that thing will down right scream. I've had my share of 305's, and none of them have ever ran as good as my 283!!!
There was a reason those came in vette's. I know 305's weren't made yet, but I still think they woulda chose the 283. the 283 has a slightly bigger bore and smaller stroke, so they breath better and wrap up a heck of a lot faster!!!!
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