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Old 03-05-2006, 04:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Mileage ?'s on engines. PLZ READ

How many miles do you think is to many when it comes to buying a chevy truck within the years 93-98 roughly. I am thinking about purchasing a chevy within this year.
One that I am currenty looking at has the tranny and transfer rebuilt but the problem is the engine has got like 185k miles on it. I thought about purchasing the truck and buying a new Goodwrench or Crate motor for it but I would rather not do that for awhile anyways. Also do you think the TBI or Vortec 350's are better? THX
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Old 03-05-2006, 04:27 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I just bought one owner 95 Z71 with 139000 on it. It has a new trans and tires. I gave 7K for it. The price was right for me so thats why I bought it. The vortec's have a little more power than the TBI and they are also OBDII, which "can" make it easier to diag if there is ever a running problem. It you do buy a TBI truck, you can put a vortec engine in it. GM performance parts has a TBI intake that bolts up to the vortec heads. We did this swap in a co-workers truck. It runs great and it was a easy swap (since you added about installing a new engine)
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Old 03-05-2006, 04:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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the truck that i mentioned that has 185k is a whole lot more miles than what I really wanted. I like the truck but I don't like the high miles. I just don't want to buy it and then turn around and spend 3-4k on a new engine...
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Old 03-05-2006, 05:30 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I have a 95' TBI truck, with 275,000 miles on the clock. I just replaced the intake gaskets on it. When I had the intake off, I am happy to say that I had absolutely NO sludge or any kind of build-up anywhere. That is a direct result of proper maintenance.

If the truck has been taken care of, I wouldn't worry.
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Old 03-05-2006, 05:48 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I would think the engine would be good for atleast another 100k IF it has been maintained. Pull the oil fill cap and look in the valve cover. Is it clean? Ask the owner to let you take it to a repair shop and have it inspected. We charge 1 hour labor to so a used car inspection. That is looking at everything, front bumper to rear bumper. Have the shop take some fluid samples. This could be the best money you spend on the front end of buying it. A hundred bucks now could save you alot in the long run. I would take it to a Chevy dealer and have it done. They know the trucks and can look at common problems that other people may not catch.They can look up the warranty history (ask the service writer to vis the history) and you can see what all was done under warranty. This weekend I replaced the oil cooler and power steering hoses & resealed the p/s pump.

Last edited by jeep450; 03-05-2006 at 05:50 PM.
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Old 03-05-2006, 06:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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the truck seems to be in pretty good shape, interior and body are nice, I am going to call a guy I know who owns a shop because his shop rebuilt the tranny on that truck 2k miles ago, and the guy who is a tech for John Deere said he rebuilt the transfer case, the truck is pretty big though with a big lift and tires, I can give exact if it really matters but I really don't see that having much of an affect on a engine, at least in my experience, it has been regeared as well. It appears to be in good shape though. I haven't gotten to serious about it yet.
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Old 03-06-2006, 12:11 PM   #7 (permalink)
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ttt, any more info on th Vortec on a 96-98 or the tbi around 92-95?
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Old 03-06-2006, 01:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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On the vortec engines some, i should say not uncommon but not real common, have had rod bearing failures. The 97 trucks have a bunch of eletrical problems and that is a pain in the ass. The fuel pumps also like to crap out, but they do give you a warning sign by humming like crazy.

The tbi engines last for a long time but just dont make a bunch of power, and that is probably the reason they last for so long. You could buy this truck and find a vortec engine with complete wiring harness to do the swap if you really want to. I dont really know how practical it would be though.

You mentioned that it has big tires and lift, what size exactly? It might not be worth it if the lift has been there for awhile because the engine having to work harder along with the transmission if he didnt regear it. Also the 10 bolt could explode if not maintained properly, even if it is they do that, and the front cvs might be shot as well. Your best bet is to take it to a mechanic, a certified GM one, and have it looked over as has already been suggested.

If you could talk him to 2k and that is a good price for you then go for it.
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Old 03-06-2006, 01:53 PM   #9 (permalink)
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My 97 has 163k on it, only drivetrain failure yet(other than the IFS) is a water pump.

My fuel pump has been politely humming long for 33k miles, I think its alright.

Poppet's suck if your planning to mod the motor, but in general Im pretty happy with the L31.
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Old 03-06-2006, 07:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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the truck I am looking at is a 96 extended cab z71, it has a 6 inch Pro Comp Susp. and a 3 inch body, it has 4.56 Yukon Gears in it with a 14 bolt rear with a detroit locker, the tranny was rebuilt by a shop 2k miles ago and I know the owner of the shop, he is going to look over the truck with me, the transfer case was rebuilt recently as well by the owner who is a technician for John Deere, it has around 185k miles on the engine, the paint and interior seem pretty nice, I didn't see any dents or anything in it either, it also has some other things such as bushwacker flares, side steps, dual 3 inch exhaust, and some other stuff, it has deep dish baja style wheels with 39.5 TSL's with about 80% tread, the story is he bought it with high miles and has it owned it for about 6 years and he alot of the work on it, it was stock when he got it, he said it runs good and drives good, but im having a mechanic look over it, I'm also thinking about taking it a dealership,

My main question is do you think the engine will last? At least for a little while longer b/c I really don't want to buy another Vortec right away, at least not for a year or 2, also would you go with a GM Vortec which has a 3 year/ 100,000 mile warranty on parts and labor, or would you go with a Crate 350 HO which has 330 horse? I think the Vortec's have like 290 stock?
THX ANY INFO APPRECIATED!
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Old 03-06-2006, 08:00 PM   #11 (permalink)
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BTW he is asking 8000 obo for it? What do you think of this price? Might be able to talk him down a little less.
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Old 03-06-2006, 08:49 PM   #12 (permalink)
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185k isn't a ton for a small block, i work in gm parts and we have several customers with 200k + trucks, it seems any where between 100-250k people are putting motors in their trucks and it really depends big time on how they were treated/ maintained.

The truck you are looking at could be a big time headache, why is he selling it? Buying a built truck is a big time gamble, you never know exactly what your getting. The majority of but not all lifted ifs "mall crawlers" still have stock gears. It shows that the previous owner did the "right thing" and geared the truck instead of bolting on 2 grand in chips, intakes, and exhaust that really give you almost no power increases.

What do you want to do with the truck? If you just want to DD it and pick up whores at the mall buy a stocker and put some bling wheels and 285's on it. 39.5 tsl's are not a good DD tire no matter what.
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Old 03-06-2006, 09:58 PM   #13 (permalink)
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he is selling the truck because he doesn't drive it much anymore because he has been building/driving another truck so he doesn't need this one and I think he needs/wants the money for his other truck. He is the one that did put the 4.56 gears in it.

I'm still working on finding more info out about the truck. I realize this truck could be a major headache if it wasn't taken care of and beat to shit.

I am going to use it as a daily driver. I am not going to wheel the piss out of it b/c of that. It would mainly see dirt road, medium trails, and mud. Nothing hardcore really. I got other plans for a play truck.

I also realize that the 39.5 TSL's are not a good tire for dd. I plan on getting either a 37" or 38", such as the Toyo MT

thx for the reply, more feedback plz!
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Old 03-06-2006, 10:34 PM   #14 (permalink)
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If you go with the vortec 350 your limited to the stock size injectors unless you swap to the marine vortec style intake.

So the higer performance motor will be wanting more fuel to make the max amount of power. I would buy the truck and swap in the HO crate motor, it should have the vortec heads, than swap to the marine style intake that has removeable injectors and not the retarded sprider injectors!
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Old 03-07-2006, 06:45 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Find a nice stock truck for 4-6 grand and then spend the other 2-4 grand on a wheeler. It sucks wheeling your DD, you can't have as much fun and you're really worried about breaking it which will happen if it's on 40's. A daily driver on 40's also just isn't practicle, i know i wouldn't want to try and grunt a pair of axles into the box of a truck that's really tall, i'd also expect around 10mpg if not less. Pretty much all the truck your looking at is good for is picking up whores and playing in the mud.
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Old 03-07-2006, 09:28 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I have been looking at buying a stock truck but not sure what would be the best year to get based on either TBI or Vortec. I thought about doing a 6" susp and running 35's or 37's.

I wouldn't want it to be to big but for a 6" lift from 4 wheel parts they want almost $1600 not including install, prob do it myself to save $600 even though it would be a pain in the ass. Also consider in new tires and wheels I'm looking at a total of around 3000-3500. I could try to find some used wheels as well. So I'm looking at a 6k stock truck that is now almost a 10k truck and it still isn't exactly how I want it.

So the question is to I build one myself and end up spending more money or do I buy one already "built" that would suit me fine. Another thing I really only plan on keeping such a truck for 3-4 years before getting a new Powerstroke or Cummins.

I am still looking further into this 96 Chev. I just don't want to end up with a big damn headache!
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Old 03-07-2006, 06:59 PM   #17 (permalink)
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The price for the truck isn't bad,even with the lift,tires,ect. Now the big thing, was it rode hard and put up wet? That you will have to figure out with whoever you get to inspect the truck with you. It all depends on what you want to do about buying another truck and doing the mods youself. I can tell you that this is not a practical truck for a DD, face it. Your hard up for this truck b/c you like the way it looks. This goes back to the inspection of it to if is a piece of shit. As far as the vortec conversion, you would keep the stock TBI set up so you would not have to worry about the "spider" vortec injector set up. I would say to install the 3/100k warranty engine. The cam is different on the 330 horse and it "may" not run well with the stock programming and fuel system. The 30 or 40 hp would not be worth the gamble to me on it running right. Plus the new engine will have more than it does now anyway. Why is he selling it, I know you said he doesn't drive it. Why, does it get 8 MPG and can't afford to drive it? With all of the mods it has, it just can't get decent MPG.
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Old 03-07-2006, 08:59 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Yes, I do like the way this truck looks, granted it doesn't make a real practical daily driver as it is but I'm not going to be driving it lots and lots every day. I am also planning on getting some smaller tires such as 37's. I am still not sure if it was driven hard and wheeled a lot yet? I'm still looking into it. Also it hsa the Vortec motor in it b/c it is a 96.
I just don't want to end up getting it and spending a lot of money on it just to keep it going. A new engine might be fine in a year or so but I don't want to throw one in there right off the bat.
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Old 03-11-2006, 10:16 AM   #19 (permalink)
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ttt
any more opinions/info would be greatly appreciated, especially any one's experience with the Vortec?
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Old 03-14-2006, 01:27 AM   #20 (permalink)
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As stated earlier about the tbi motors lacking in the power department.....it's true. A few a my friends have or have had these trucks with the tbi motors.......they really don't make enough power to blow them selves up (i'm not saying you can't......but weve tried......its the only piece of the truck we didn't break in some way) My first truck was a 96' (first year of the vortec motor).....i was pleased with it......and really loved it when i drove my buddies tbi......the vortec seemed alot more powerful.....I have only had a few problems with the vortec motor. one was as said earlier the fuel pumps like to go out for some reason.....only happened once....and i had to replace the tensioner on it......but that was at 206k miles......not too bad in my book, but its how the motor was maintained. Also i really have just skimmed these posts.....if someone has mentioned it sorry, but a half ton chevy truck, the front suspension doesn't like anything of a 35" tire too much......if it has 39's on it......make sure the front end gets looked over real good. in my opinion if you wheel this truck....expect to spend some $$$ on fixing it.......buy a stock truck and drive it.......and build a truck for off roading/wheeling......it took a costly lesson for me to learn that.
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Old 03-14-2006, 10:47 AM   #21 (permalink)
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thx for the reply, I'm leaning more on not getting it now. The gas issue is going to be a problem and I really don't want to spend the money to buy a new Goodwrench. At least that is what I am thinking now anyways. I might as well save the money that i would spend on the new motor and save that to spend on something else.
How many miles do you have on your truck now?
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Old 03-15-2006, 02:10 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Old 03-15-2006, 12:23 PM   #23 (permalink)
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what all is done to your truck if anything such as is it lifted or not? Have you had to rebuild anything yet such as the tranny and what problems have you had with it? Thx
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Old 03-16-2006, 08:57 PM   #24 (permalink)
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well over the years its gotten alot rebuilt......right now it sees very limited street time.....its become more of a trail truck now......due to an accident which i bought it back from and had alot of cash leftover from the settlement 'so it got a straight axle put in her......but when it was my DD I had to have the tranny rebuilt......seems heavy foots and stock 4l60e's aren't a good combination (who would've thought?) that was my own mistake though....before the accident (when the acident happened i had 251K) i was running headers, a k and n fipk, hypertech chip, and a few other things......motor held up fine.......but not to get off topic your question was about motors.....with a 9 inch lift (6 susp and 3 body) and 37's i blew up my front differential twice......the SF 14 bolt once (spider gears)....(and i'm just going to assume that you have a weaker rear-end......the 14 bolt was some what a rare item on half ton if i'm thinking right) The tranny as mentioned was mostly from me trying to be a hot shot too many times.....my buddies got almost the same truck with 310k on it.......no tranny problems until last week where it needed a full rebuild. Countless front end parts due too large tires and ifs (wheel bearings, cv axles, ect) Only other problems where with the exhaust......pipes getting kinked or bent....finally just shot it over the rear axle with immediate turn downs so nothing woulld get crunched.....prob a couple minor thing too nothing big......hope this helps you in some way.....let me know if i can try and answer anything else for you.
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