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Glad the truck is still around. Too bad this site is now a ghost town.
 

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Discussion Starter · #442 ·
Glad the truck is still around. Too bad this site is now a ghost town.
Yeah, I understand all that has gone on with PBB and to be honest our sport as a whole isn't what it used to be...

The only big changes to the truck are new 35x12.50-15 BFG KM2s on white wagon wheels, some KC lights, a fresh coat of paint and a new motor. I'm going for more of a true retro theme now using parts that were available in the '80s and '90s where possible. The Q78 swampers were worn almost smooth so I got a deal on the BFGs and mounted them up for something more streetable. I fully intend on getting another set of swampers for the truck mounted on another set of wheels and then only run the BFGs for light wheeling and go-fast fun.

The truck has about 11,000mi on it now since I first built it with literally thousands of those being off-road miles. The motor (which was the 363" windsor we originally built) ran great but I was starting to lose oil pressure under low to mid RPM/high load situations indicating the main bearings were getting worn. Pulled the motor and sure enough the mains were down to copper and decent wear on the rod bearings too. Culprit? The stock oil pan simply was insufficient for extreme off camber off-road use. With only stock capacity, no baffles, no windage control, etc on extremely steep climbs it would lose oil pressure, once even enough to momentarily start knocking. That coupled with my never ending quest for more power led me to pull the motor for a complete top to bottom rebuild. I was able to reuse the block, crank, and pistons after a trip to the machine shop, everything else was upgraded for the new build. New Specs are as follows:

1978 351w block, .060 over, 363cu. in., ~9.6:1 static compression
-Stock rods and crank
-Hypereutectic flat top pistons
-All ARP fasteners top to bottom
-170cc Edelbrock heads, bowl blended, smoothed valve guides and short side radius, port matched to intake, etc
-Edelbrock Performer intake
-210/211 @ .050, .445 lift roller cam (stock 5.0HO grind) with Howards Link bar lifters
-Q-jet, DUI HEI distributor, 1 5/8 shorty headers, 2 1/2 Y pipe into 3" single exhaust, Flowmaster super 40 muffler
-Canton 8qt deep sump off-road oil pan with baffles
-Gear reduction starter

The new motor was a BIG increase in power, with my engine simulation software showing an almost 80hp and 40lb-ft gain over the previous motor. Oiling was greatly improved with the proper oil pan and it starts better with the gear reduction starter. The only problem I'm running into is with my cam choice. I picked the stock 5.0 roller grind because it had roughly the specs I wanted, not too much lift to keep the valvetrain happy and was a roller cam for increased longevity and durability. I'm also dealing with the fact that aftermarket cam choices over the past year have been fairly limited due to everything going on in the world right now. Many cams are back-ordered for months due to a lack of cam cores to grind. On paper the stock 5.0HO cam looks to be about right but in the truck there is great super low end (like 500-1000rpm) and great top end (above 3500,) but in between there's just nobody home. The problem lies in the fact that the cam ground with a 115* LSA which means good power at the top and bottom of the power curve at the expense of mid-range power. In a 302cu.in motor it was about right for it's intended purpose, but at 363cu in it's quite lacking. With the duration specs and a 115LSA the intake closing event is at 41* which kills dynamic compression, and therefore power. All that being said, I'm planning to swap back to a different cam to try to get the power delivery I want. The new cam I'm going to install is a hydraulic flat tappet Comp High Energy 286h grind (218/218 duration at .050, .456 lift, 110LSA). It's an old school grind that came out in the mid-70s (fitting my retro theme) and according to my engine software it's actually a pretty good match for this combo, increasing low and mid range torque by as much at 20lb-ft and picking up 10hp on the top end. While I'm swapping the cam I'm also going to step up to an Edelbrock performer RPM intake as I think with these heads and level of power it's more appropriate that the low rise Performer intake. Hopefully I'll get the new cam and intake on in the next week or two.

I don't have access to my Photo Bucket account anymore and I'm not buying a star, so I'll just link a current youtube video of the truck:
 
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