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-   -   Fresh start: what engine for swap in tow centric build? (https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2680640)

Lil'John 04-12-2019 05:54 PM

Fresh start: what engine for swap in tow centric build?
 
1 Attachment(s)
I decided to go more open ended thread from when I asked about an AMC 401:
https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/tow-...g-replace.html

To long, won't read people: Best big block to swap for towing in an FJ55.

Platform: 1970s Toyota Land Cruiser FJ55 - think S10 Blazer sized
Axles will be 'early' front Dodge Dana 60(67" wide) and rear 2000 Ford E350 Dana 60.

Here is example of an FJ55:
https://www.pirate4x4.com/forum/atta...1&d=1555115973

The tow load is ~7k pounds. The above trailer plus a vehicle on it.

I am thinking about a big block of some sort. Sadly, I don't want to deal with extreme weight and needed suspension upgrades to get a 'real' diesel in it :(

Before this thread devolves into an LSx swap, I do not want one in this third incoming FJ55. The green one above has an LQ4(6.0L). The brown one above has a turbo'd 5.3L.

So with that said, what big block would you look at?

My initial thought was a Cady big block such as 472 or 500. One of the bigger pluses is they weigh just a hair over a SBC at 625lbs. The other plus is I tossed one in an FJ40 so I know it fits well. It has an offset oilpan available which will help with front axle. The down is they are 40 years old so it will probably need a rebuild and no EFI. I was thinking 454 TBI which I have all parts in hand.

From previous thread, the Chevy 8.1L popped up. It sounds like with 'minimal' work, they wake up. The downside is they are an LS big block. It also sounds like they burn a bit of oil.

I saw vortec 454. It sounds like they are reasonable.

I am open to a Ford 460. But I know close to nothing on them. They appear to be a hair lighter than an 8.1(720 vs 761) They also appear to be bit long(32" vs 30.75")

Black Sheep 04-12-2019 06:45 PM

The short block of a 454 and 8.1l are very similar, its the change in heads/intake that set them apart. But not stupid like the rest of the LS where you have to pull the heads for the lifters. Its a 496 with cathedral port heads, metric bolts, and Gen3 fuel injection.

IMHO, the oil consumption is directly related to the over engineered CCV.

Broke_as_a_joke 04-12-2019 08:24 PM

Keep in mind this is a stock for almost stock comparison but my last tow rig was a 4.10 geared 97 7.4/4l80e truck and my current tow rig is a 4.10 geared 8.1/nv4500 truck with an amateur tune job, I wouldn't even consider the the 7.4 for a swap if the 8.1 is an option, same mileage, significant power difference. That said I'm sure they both have broom sticks for cam shafts. Neither one use much oil at all.

PROJECTJUNKIE 04-12-2019 09:57 PM

Man, if you're bored with an LS, you could do something else, but they work so well, are so freaking cheap, and you've already got them figured out. I'd like to see one with a turbo for towing.

An 8.1 is hard to beat.

A 460 is a mule, are cheap, and often found with a zf5, if you're into 5 speeds. But iron heads, heavy, terrible on fuel, just not seeing it. A sequential efi swap with custom tune and mustang computer wake them up and save gas, but still not seeing the value.

If you're looking for something different, consider a dodge v10. They pull like a train, are surprisingly compact, and found pretty cheap in a truck with a bad tranny.

I'd like to see you run a hino diesel in that bad boy

Whatever you build, I'll watch :grinpimp:

YotaAtieToo 04-12-2019 10:13 PM

You mention the 500 caddy and 8.1 in the same post. Both are awesome, but such different worlds.

Mine as well throw the 3.5 eco boost in there :flipoff2:

Lil'John 04-12-2019 10:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Broke_as_a_joke (Post 44399854)
Keep in mind this is a stock for almost stock comparison but my last tow rig was a 4.10 geared 97 7.4/4l80e truck and my current tow rig is a 4.10 geared 8.1/nv4500 truck with an amateur tune job, I wouldn't even consider the the 7.4 for a swap if the 8.1 is an option, same mileage, significant power difference. That said I'm sure they both have broom sticks for cam shafts. Neither one use much oil at all.

Thanks for the input. The 8.1L is on the table.

Quote:

Originally Posted by YotaAtieToo (Post 44399944)
Mine as well throw the 3.5 eco boost in there :flipoff2:

Oddly enough, I did some looking at them as an option. :laughing: From what I saw, they were wide as hell thoughout the whole engine with the turbo; something like 28". Sadly, a bit too wide for an FJ55 frame:( The ~417 pound weight was interesting. I'm not sure I buy the ~21" height though.

I also noted a few longevity issues that concerned me. Not 100% off the table but not high on the list.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PROJECTJUNKIE (Post 44399928)
Man, if you're bored with an LS, you could do something else, but they work so well, are so freaking cheap, and you've already got them figured out. I'd like to see one with a turbo for towing.

I've got a bad reputation as an FJ55 LSx butcher... I'd rather not continue that route. Although stroking out a 6.0L to 408cc does seem interesting at times.:homer:

Quote:

Originally Posted by PROJECTJUNKIE (Post 44399928)
A 460 is a mule, are cheap, and often found with a zf5, if you're into 5 speeds. But iron heads, heavy, terrible on fuel, just not seeing it. A sequential efi swap with custom tune and mustang computer wake them up and save gas, but still not seeing the value.

Having just wrapped up a 'typical' tow trip, most of my time is in the hills. Think windy roads with very little 'real' freeway time. Mostly in the 40mph to 55mph. Somewhat funny but my 2000 S10 with small stock 4.3L just towed an FJ55 for about 180 miles on a whole tank... so about 11mpg:eek:

Quote:

Originally Posted by PROJECTJUNKIE (Post 44399928)
If you're looking for something different, consider a dodge v10. They pull like a train, are surprisingly compact, and found pretty cheap in a truck with a bad tranny.

I forget if I looked at the ford V10 or the dodge v10. I think the issue was related to the length being 34". I may go double check.

Quote:

Originally Posted by PROJECTJUNKIE (Post 44399928)
Whatever you build, I'll watch :grinpimp:

Full engine/drivetrain swap is probably 2 years out while I finish some other items on other project(read: spend too much money). Lots of body, frame, and suspension work to do on this project before I get to the drivetrain(read: spend time with minimal cash)

gavan 04-13-2019 05:19 AM

12v p-pumped Cummins, the LS of the tow world.

Or a common rail if you value the little things in life, like hearing

clb 017 04-13-2019 07:40 AM

personally???
Ya need more rig, braking weight is looking a tad LIGHT...
a properly built big 3 eng.
Or cummins?

Lil'John 04-13-2019 08:24 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by gavan (Post 44400042)
12v p-pumped Cummins, the LS of the tow world.

Or a common rail if you value the little things in life, like hearing

Quote:

Originally Posted by clb 017 (Post 44400124)
personally???
Ya need more rig, braking weight is looking a tad LIGHT...
a properly built big 3 eng.
Or cummins?

As already mentioned, a real diesel isn't an option nor being considered. 1000 to 1200 pounds over the front isn't something I want to deal with. I know a 6bt will squeeze in with a LOT of effort though.

Good point on the weight. While not perfect, I think this platform will be reasonable based upon towing similar load with an S10 truck which has a tow rating of 7k lbs.

Some comparisons to the S10 vs FJ55:
weight: 3000lbs vs 4000lbs
wheel base: 108" vs 106" (my own measurement says 108")

By going to Dana 60 axles, I gain at least 300 pounds on the ground and very large disc brakes. Engine/tranny/tcase should be a wash on weight if not add a few pounds... stock LC tranny is ~100lbs while NV4500 is ~170lbs.

FWIW, I towed the same load with a newer Silverado 1500 and felt it towed just a hair better than the S10. The regular cab version weighs in at 4700-5000lbs.

I've attached an ecoboost dimension picture.

ChiScouter 04-13-2019 09:00 AM

I have enough things to do. I want my tow rig to be able to sit for long periods of time and always be ready to go. I want it to be cheap and easy to fix preferably with parts easy to find on CL or junkyard. Having a twin turbo motor sounds like a formula for expensive to maintain and a lot of time to do it. Its too bad there is no easy port injection and OD for the caddy. If not LS than I would be looking for a cheap port injected big block chevy as the most bang for the buck and easiest.

K9Kodi 04-13-2019 10:14 AM

4bt turned up? Weighs almost identical to the 8.1 abs probably many other big blocks

Bo185 04-13-2019 10:29 AM

The 8.1L is a BBC with LS injection and coil packs its not an LS motor. So you would have compatibility on things like coil packs etc. if need comes up, parts on shelf's anywhere too. Toss in a cam and enjoy. Run a 4L80 for auto, Allison is nice but big and eats power.

A 4'' stroked LS 6.0L would be next option. But BBC would have advantage toque wise, as it will make power down low vs having to spin the LS more.

I vote 8.1L

But I assume you have a budget, if not I would look at a new LT motor as well if that isn't the case. A stroked L86 6.2L would be a beast. Even a standard 6.2L LT would be nice but spendy, with AL block.

The new GM HD will have a iron block 6.6L LT based small block which will be a torque beast and have a standard water pump and acc drive. Vs the 1500 off set pump and no PS pump. Be 2-3 years before they hit the yards though.


The 7000# shouldn't be an issue provided you have trailer brakes on both axles, it will stop fine and you're upgraded tow rig axles. Just watch tongue weight when loading or run WD hitch.
Have you actually weighed trail rig/trailer?

DirtRoads 04-13-2019 10:40 AM

What about a 6.4 hemi with a manual? That sounds kind of cool.

Otherwise put me in the 8.1L camp.

DirtRoads 04-13-2019 10:40 AM

What about a 6.4 hemi with a manual? That sounds kind of cool.

Otherwise put me in the 8.1L camp.

350TacoZilla 04-13-2019 11:51 AM

I would love to have a 500 caddy in a tow rig but the parts are getting harder to find and really they make a ton of TQ stock but have to spend $ to get same performance out of them as a stock 8.1 would give you. It sounds like diesel is a absolute no go for you due to weight but not all diesels are 1200lbs, I think a duramax is within 100lbs or so of a fully dressed 8.1L. Biggest difference would be towing MPG and cost to build there but I have thought many times of picking up a diesel van and using the motor and trans (lower output but good mpg and dont use a allison trans)

Otherwise
1st choice would be 8.1 with mild cam and manual trans or 4L80e\4L85e
2nd choice would have to be stroked LS with same trans choices, yes you have been there before but that means you already know how to do it and have spares.

Lil'John 04-13-2019 01:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by K9Kodi (Post 44400248)
4bt turned up? Weighs almost identical to the 8.1 abs probably many other big blocks

Everything I have read about the 4bt says I would need my dental paid up because I'll loose fillings with the rattling:homer:

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bo185 (Post 44400272)
The 8.1L is a BBC with LS injection and coil packs its not an LS motor. So you would have compatibility on things like coil packs etc. if need comes up, parts on shelf's anywhere too. Toss in a cam and enjoy. Run a 4L80 for auto, Allison is nice but big and eats power.

Good point... my comment was based upon the injection being basically the same.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bo185 (Post 44400272)
But I assume you have a budget, if not I would look at a new LT motor as well if that isn't the case. A stroked L86 6.2L would be a beast. Even a standard 6.2L LT would be nice but spendy, with AL block.

I hate saying no budget but I'm not afraid to pay to play ;) I don't think the new LTs are on the plate. The aluminum block isn't something I overly care about.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bo185 (Post 44400272)
The 7000# shouldn't be an issue provided you have trailer brakes on both axles, it will stop fine and you're upgraded tow rig axles. Just watch tongue weight when loading or run WD hitch.
Have you actually weighed trail rig/trailer?

Trailer brakes are on both axles and do a nice job even with the light weight S10.

I haven't put trailer and load on a scale. My numbers are based upon other's weights. The style of trailer seems to come in consistently at 2500lbs.

Quote:

Originally Posted by DirtRoads (Post 44400286)
What about a 6.4 hemi with a manual? That sounds kind of cool.

I'll have to take a look into that. But something about a big block just screams tow rig:homer:

Quote:

Originally Posted by 350TacoZilla (Post 44400358)
I would love to have a 500 caddy in a tow rig but the parts are getting harder to find and really they make a ton of TQ stock but have to spend $ to get same performance out of them as a stock 8.1 would give you. It sounds like diesel is a absolute no go for you due to weight but not all diesels are 1200lbs, I think a duramax is within 100lbs or so of a fully dressed 8.1L. Biggest difference would be towing MPG and cost to build there but I have thought many times of picking up a diesel van and using the motor and trans (lower output but good mpg and dont use a allison trans)

What you note is the biggest issue with a cady; finding a good runner/core.

The duramax info that I found was wildly inconsistent. I found one weight claiming ~835lbs. But the next weight was ~1100lbs. To put a number to the 8.1L, I consistently found it as weighing 761lbs.

I've also looked into the Toyota 5.7(3uz). Weight is a scary ~500lbs. Bad is it is wide as hell and how to 'tune' it to get rid of keylock.

I'm currently somewhat bouncing between a 7.4 Vortec and the 8.1L.

Action Fab 04-13-2019 02:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DirtRoads (Post 44400286)
What about a 6.4 hemi with a manual? That sounds kind of cool.

Otherwise put me in the 8.1L camp.

I used to maintain the Superlift/Chrysler promotional vehicles. They built a single cab 6.2 hemi Power Wagon with the 6 speed. It had 4.56's and 37" Toyos on heavy MRW beadlocks.

All I'm sayin' is that truck freaking ripped. I think you should really take a look into this setup. The 6.4 is probably even better.

ChiScouter 04-13-2019 03:47 PM

With equal displacement doesn't a hemi tend to have less torque down low as compared to other head styles?

87manche 04-13-2019 03:57 PM

8.1, just for the fuel injection and common gm shit.

and then maybe this later?
Vortec 8100 8.1L Chevy GM Performance Parts - 496cid BBC Truck / SUV Performance Packages - Raylar Engineering

Action Fab 04-13-2019 04:14 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by ChiScouter (Post 44400568)
With equal displacement doesn't a hemi tend to have less torque down low as compared to other head styles?

I don't know, but I'd bet that is more dependent on other factors like tuning, stroke, intake design, cam profile, etcetera. It might be that better head designs exist for low end torque but I doubt you could make the claim for any motor that it has poor low end torque characteristics because of the hemispheric heads.

Here are some dyno charts I knicked off the net.

Edit. For whatever reason I can't upload the one comparing the 6.2L from a Camaro

clb 017 04-13-2019 06:45 PM

As long as you're aware of the issues of a light weight tow rig, and CAN compensate,,, sounds like you have a fair plan.

Bo185 04-13-2019 11:10 PM

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The 8.1L makes 400 ft/lb damn near off idle. And peak at 2800 and is pretty flat. Built to tow. Stock engine dyno sheet attached. One thing is a tune really wakes them up as well. Toss in a cam for even more.

I wouldn’t even waste time nor money on a 454.

With an LS or hemi you’ll need to spin it to 6k to make rated HP. Towing you want torque to get it moving then decent hp once its up and going. Which the 8.1L will do and not be at 6k rpms

2big bronco 04-13-2019 11:30 PM

I'm not a chevy guy but the 8.1 seems like the motor for this project. You can buy them turn key with the harness and all fairly cheap with a warranty.

If it was me and I like complicating things.... towing a max of 7,000 I'd look at the 2.7 ecoboost just because it would be so much fun to rip around in. The 2.7 is considerably faster then the 3.5

Bo185 04-14-2019 09:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 2big bronco (Post 44400902)

If it was me and I like complicating things.... towing a max of 7,000 I'd look at the 2.7 ecoboost just because it would be so much fun to rip around in. The 2.7 is considerably faster then the 3.5

How is the 2.7L faster with 50 less hp and 50 less ft/lb of torque than a 3.5 stock for stock? Ford magic?

Action Fab 04-14-2019 09:46 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bo185 (Post 44400888)
The 8.1L makes 400 ft/lb damn near off idle. And peak at 2800 and is pretty flat. Built to tow. Stock engine dyno sheet attached. One thing is a tune really wakes them up as well. Toss in a cam for even more.

I wouldn’t even waste time nor money on a 454.

With an LS or hemi you’ll need to spin it to 6k to make rated HP. Towing you want torque to get it moving then decent hp once its up and going. Which the 8.1L will do and not be at 6k rpms

I would agree if his load was bigger. Don't you think an 8.1 is a bit overkill with a 7k lb load? The lack of RPM, the weight, the oil consumption issues and fuel consumption seem to make it a bit of a compromise when you think about how much OP really needs that low end grunt. I bet the Hemi feels quicker and town just as well given his intended load.

I really like the ford V10, but I think the Wookie is overkill.


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