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Thread: 85 CJ7 re-conversion....

  1. #1
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    85 CJ7 re-conversion....

    So I'm in the planning stages of rebuilding my CJ7.....

    It currently has a Chevy 350 that I blew up 3 years ago and its been sitting ever since.

    My conundrum. Should I find another 350 to plop in or should I use a conglomeration of parts from my 98 XJ and 93 XJ to resurrect my old boy?

    I've done alot of research so far and plopping in another 350 would be the easier option, it would cost more I think considering the price of a good used 350 vortec here in my area.

    The 4.0 swap is a lot more work but, I have 2 jeeps for donors so it would be waaaay cheaper.

    Any suggestions? Opinions?

    Target deadline for the project is next spring and its like I said, I'm still planning so all suggestions and opinions are welcome! Thanks in advanced Jeepkings!
    OF4WD member # 6000

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    Personally, yeah a good used 350 is a little more expensive but since the set up is already there it is a far easier swap. You an also rebuild your old 350 and throw that back in. But I'd stay the 350 rout
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    Quote Originally Posted by pippilongstocking View Post
    Personally, yeah a good used 350 is a little more expensive but since the set up is already there it is a far easier swap. You an also rebuild your old 350 and throw that back in. But I'd stay the 350 rout
    Oh, by the way did I mention, the 350 thats currently in the CJ is a carberated? The block is from a 68 corvette and the heads are double hump heads from a 79 C10? When I blew the motor I blew the number 1 cylinder exhaust valve and tried to repair it then. When I turned the motor over with the compressed air the try and lift the valve to replace the spring, I got pissed off and let it sit open for the last 3 years. I'm guessing that block is rusty in that cylinder so I'm doubting its good. If I did go the 350 route, I'd be wanting to upgrade to a vortec. With all the vortec wiring, is it really that much easier?

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    You should to BarbarianSam he has a CJ7 with a strong running 302 that he is looking to sell/part out

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    Thanks but I'm definitely not interested in a 302


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    I can't imagine going backwards and putting forth all of the time and effort to replace an SBC with a 4.0. Just because you have a bunch of old junk lying doesn't mean that is the best course of action. A 4.0 is a big turd compared to a strong 350 SBC. If you are bent on having an injected SBC, the 96-99 Vortec would be an easier swap since all of your mounting, bracketry, exhaust, etc will work for the gen 1/2 SBC. Most of the hard parts will still be interchangeable. A slightly easier swap with similar power would be an 87-93 TPI 350. They are a great running engine, OEM full roller and simpler first generation engine management with simplified wiring. The best option would be a gen 3 LSX SBC from a truck but exhaust, mounts, fuel system requirements, accessories and such are all different so there would be more to that swap. The gen 3 and up stuff is much more appealing as they are cheap and plentiful and a superior engine by every measure. Unless you had an outright need to have injection and the primary motivation is to keep the engine replacement cheap and simple, I'd keep it carbureted. Repair or replace the existing 350 with another and enjoy. The gen 2 SBC is one of the simplest and most cost effective bangs for the buck to own, modify and repair.
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    i'm just about ready to tear apart a buddys truck with a good strong 350 in it. out of an 88 1/2ton all the wiring could be had. he just want his newer stuff he put on it for his 90! Let me know i can probly get it as a roller for you to tow home.
    a learning experience is one of those things that says, you know that thing you just did...don't do that again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cheezballz12 View Post
    i'm just about ready to tear apart a buddys truck with a good strong 350 in it. out of an 88 1/2ton all the wiring could be had. he just want his newer stuff he put on it for his 90! Let me know i can probly get it as a roller for you to tow home.
    How much cheezballs?


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    i will get you a solid price tonight. i know he only wants the stuff he has just put on. I.E new exhaust, battery, fenders, brakes. and tires. its sad to see this truck get ripped down but he needs a cab and half.

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    ok, thanks Cheezballs....

    Any other suggestions or opinions?

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    Quote Originally Posted by skippy594 View Post
    Oh, by the way did I mention, the 350 thats currently in the CJ is a carberated? The block is from a 68 corvette and the heads are double hump heads from a 79 C10? When I blew the motor I blew the number 1 cylinder exhaust valve and tried to repair it then. When I turned the motor over with the compressed air the try and lift the valve to replace the spring, I got pissed off and let it sit open for the last 3 years. I'm guessing that block is rusty in that cylinder so I'm doubting its good. If I did go the 350 route, I'd be wanting to upgrade to a vortec. With all the vortec wiring, is it really that much easier?
    I'm just realizing I'm an idiot.... The block is from a 79 C10 and the heads are the double hump from a 68 vette.... not the other way round like I said It also has pete jackson racing gears and timing set and according to the guy I bought the jeep from, he built it to have 400 HP.
    Last edited by skippy594; 09-20-2013 at 07:58 AM.

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    hey skip, my bad its a 305 in it!

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    Ah, ok.... Thanks for checking anyway


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    NP but i will check around down here (Hamilton) will pm u if i find anything!

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    go for the vortec 350 way more power. really good airflow on heads. hydrallic roller cam lasts a long time. do put a 4 degree cam advance in!
    great bottom end power. edlbrock makes a great intake[performer] all you need... i have vortec heads on my 406 in my cj. like them! bubba

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    Is this a off road toy, or for the street? i vote a carb 350. just buy a whole running truck for 600, pull the motor, and scrap the rest. then you know how good the engine is you are buying, and its the cheapest route.
    currently building a toyota. i'm sorry.

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    Its going to be a drive to the trail, trail all day then drive how kinda rig.... I brought my old boy home today and I've decided.... 350 carberated it will stay. That for me is the easiest and cheapest way for me to go, now that its home and I see how its faired sitting in a friends field for the last year and a half.

    Thanks for the input guys and keep an eye out for the build thread.... "Skippy's CJ7 resurrection"Click image for larger version. 

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    Don't use that Pete Jackson gear drive crap...use a good quality true double roller from Cloyes....Just sayin'

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuzzieGee View Post
    Don't use that Pete Jackson gear drive crap...use a good quality true double roller from Cloyes....Just sayin'

    Whys that BuzzieGee?

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    Too many harmonics transferred from the crank to the camshaft with a gear drive. Reliability issues( it's like driving your camshaft with an impact gun instead of an air ratchet), it's fine for a race engine that's freshened up every year but for a daily driver it's not worth the headaches, the true roller chain dampens the crank to cam harmonics and helps with longevity in the valve train. Engines are all about breathing great and the proper harmonics for reliability.
    Besides......the whine from hell gets old in a hurry

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