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First engine swap: ‘85 454 into ‘79 C10

Discussion in 'Engine Swaps (Gas) LS, Vortec, LT1 , etc.' started by DirtyDYT, Jul 18, 2018.

  1. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Windstar fans aren't a bolt-on, but they are sized correctly to do a custom install.
     
  2. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    No kidding? I’m about 15 minutes away.

    9am - 4pm

    Here’s their online flyer:

    https://youngsdairy.com/truck-show/

    My mistake, though that would still be a good start!
     
  3. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Yep, I live over in the West Jefferson/ London area. And when I'm not out of town working, I work in a shop right off 41, right next to I70.
     
  4. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    Cool, we’re like neighbors as far as the internet is concerned!

    Guess you’ll be the first person I ask if they have a spare driver side gas tank. The K30’s only tank sprung a leak by the back strap on the way home from the junkyard today. It’s currently leaking ~2/3 gallon per hour into a large trash can. Bummer. Two trucks and one car and I can’t drive any one of them right now. The irony lol
     
  5. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Nope, no extra fuel tanks right now. Unless you want to swap to a K5 30 gallon rear mount tank.

    But the saddle tanks are not side-specific, so that makes it a little easier.

    And I get the irony. I've got like 15 or so cars and trucks and at the moment, only a few are road ready, lol.
     
  6. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    Holy cow, that’s quite a few! I just need it to get the K30 back on the road asap. My accord is still waiting on a clutch at the shop and the C10 is still far from road ready.

    Off to search the local online classifieds... don’t want to steal the tank from the C10 just yet!

    I did get some good parts at the junkyard while I was out:

    A fan setup from a 98 Windstar. Are the fans just wired in parallel? Seems like that was the case. Connecting either red wire to +12V seems to turn them full on.

    F9CD6598-D0BF-46E5-880C-50813073C2B9.jpeg

    Two trans coolers: one from an E150 and one from an F150. Why Fords? They had the biggest coolers there. I’m going to guess the long one is probably similar in capabilities to the oem oil cooler in one of these trucks.

    E8651107-D4A8-41D9-A029-82018D98FA84.jpeg

    Edit: The larger one also fits nicely behind the bumper/winch mount on my K30. I wedged it in about 3/4” to the right of center so I could view it at a distance.

    12321924-2B17-41C0-8BF9-0400D128D8AA.jpeg

    17C3C058-3C1E-4746-A201-A0AE251AC27B.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2018
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  7. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    454's
    Important progress related question:

    What size square bit do I need to remove the plugs in the oil galley? Nothing I have here fits correctly.

    Updates:

    This weekend was a total waste. Took me from Friday night til Sunday morning to get my buddy to put the passenger side header on which was a major hang up on making forward progress. He literally wasted my entire weekend staring at his junky ass impulse buy F150 thats still stuck on my driveway while it was resting on the one jack I needed... Now I’m finding more parts don’t fit and back to spending money.

    $1950 budget
    +$50 sold old block
    -$750 engine
    -$500 truck
    -$68 gasket sets
    -$168 headers
    -$30 plug wires
    -$98 ATF, oil, coolant
    -$8 thermostat and gasket
    -$30 flex plate
    -$9 carb gasket
    -$72 trans cooler lines
    -$35 fuel line
    -$10 electrical connectors/hardware
    -$69 ps/alt mount
    -$60 windstar electric fans
    -$66 battery
    -$15 lvacuum line crap

    =$12 left... pretty much going to break the budget by the time it’s done.
     
  8. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    454's
    The real hang up now is my inability to go beyond the budget.

    I’m out $194 on new parts for the K30. Fuel tank and rear strap/hanger assembly. That was pretty much all my stretch the budget money.

    I will need a new PS pump. This one is f’d up and doesn’t fit the mounts I have. I’ll just go without for now.

    Progress is slow but still happening. Plug wires go on soon, battery power wiring goes in soon, and I need to get a trans dipstick gasket. The old one really doesn’t want to go back in for the third time and was leaking when I got it. Then I can fill with fluids, test the starter, check timing, assess the vacuum line situation, trans actuator, and throttle bracket. Lots of things do not look like they will play nice and there’s more to that list. Yikes!

    In the end all I really care about is making it run. Preferably soon.
     
  9. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    It is so close to firing up that I can almost smell it!

    There’s oil in the engine, the starter is wired, the battery is in... but I’d be lucky to even crank it over by the end of the weekend. I really need to finish up the wiring, trans, torque converter, oil pressure sensor, and vacuum lines before I even try to run it.

    Here’s a picture of a lot of unfinished work!

    76412D8C-FFDD-4D50-8B72-F8CA809B3808.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
  10. 78c10bigten

    78c10bigten Full Access Member

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    I really like that adjustable bar on the alternator!!! Make tightening a breeze!
     
  11. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    After a slow week I did just enough to crank the truck over today. I hit it with what little starter fluid I had left and jumped in. Two fires on the first crank! I couldn’t repeat it once the engine started pulling gas from the tank though.

    Progress has otherwise slowed to a crawl and I have classes beginning again in a week. But I did fix my K30’s gas tank, help my buddy with his ridiculous F150 rehab, and fix his coworkers Cherokee.

    I also got the much needed validation that comes along with the first successful test fire. The pre-run list looks a lot smaller (but is also missing the fan install).

    F763820B-1A37-469E-986A-71DAB432E8A1.jpeg

    Thanks a million guys. There’s no way I could have engine swapped this truck and got it to fire for under 2 grand without the help of this forum. I am incredibly grateful for the help and advice that I’ve recieve thus far.

    I sure hope so! I’m just worried it may wiggle loose.

    Edit:

    Great news! Got a hold of one of the guys who does square bodies down the road. Turns out his name is Joshua. They buy the trucks at auction and flip or part them. He says they go through 80 or 90 a year. I can probably find darn near everything I need through them parts wise if the prices are right. Of course he tried buying both my trucks before our conversation was over... lol
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2018
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  12. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    Got it to run today after beating my head against the wall. I had 1 and 6 swapped like most newbies do. Referenced and old photo of the engine before stripping and saw where the entire #6 wire went. That was enough for me to retime the engine correctly.

    Literally as last minute as it could be. I start classes tomorrow lol.
     
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  13. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    Well, been hung up on finding a stock shroud to modify as a mounting system for the windstar fans, as well as to seal the gaps. Can't finish installing the coolant lines 'til that's fitted and in semi-permanently.

    That guy down the road who parts trucks? Yeah, he flakes out unless you're spending big bucks or buying whole trucks. So much for having a reliable parts source.

    After a good deal of hunting and cussing about the local market, I found part number GM3110122 online. Supposedly fits any square body ever made. I know that's BS but for $11 through advance auto (after a 25% discount and free shipping) I might as well try.

    So I'm still stuck, one stupid little issue at a time... maybe it'll be driving by next year.

    Oh and I have a new problem. The trans no longer goes into park. I may have f'd up the linkage the first time I tried to drop it to change the flex plate. Ugh.

    Here's the last update of the "short list"

    IMG_0478.JPG
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2018
  14. DirtyDYT

    DirtyDYT Full Access Member

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    After months of ADHD inspired distraction including a VW sand rail basket case that I’m taking a break from, I’ve finally returned to my pretend heavy half ton “Dale” this evening.

    I started by topping off the ATF and filling the coolant. Then I ran a hidden “start” push button switch that enables the distributor +12V via relay while cranking the starter. Without the switch depressed it has no spark while cranking and will not start.

    Runs f’ing perfectly. I cannot wait to drive this truck. What’s left? Three things:

    1) Electric fan install. Probably a simple relay with remote on/off switch in the cab until I have more cash. I could easily do this tonight.

    2) Trans linkage(?) It won’t go into park and lurches forward even with the shifter all the way to “P” and then some. Again, probably my fault from the first time I tried to drop the trans and subsequently forgot to pull the linkage. It held the trans up as I tried to lower the jack causing a pretty serious “D’oh! Hope I didn’t ‘F’ that up!” moment.

    3) Accessory drives: I need a PS bracket, and then to size and buy belts.

    Remember that fan shroud from last post? Yeah, it might fit a V6 radiator or something... so I’ll chop one (or both) up to make my custom shroud!
     
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  15. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    What radiator are you running? The Windstar fans are a good match for most of them.

    The trans linkage is adjustable. The rod coming down from the column has a set bolt at the bottom pivot. Just loosen it, put the shifter and trans linkage both in park, then tighten the bolt.
     
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