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Remanufactured 350? - Gearhead engines?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by SD56, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. SD56
    Joined: Feb 16, 2012
    Posts: 15

    SD56
    Member

    My 350 is roasted. Time to get a new one. local rebuilders want $1500 - $1800, new crate truck 350 is about $2K.

    The other option was buying a re-manufactured engine from somewhere like Gearhead. Best prices but what's the quality like? I know they've had some complaints but I also know sell a lot of engines and have been around for awhile.

    Gearhead wants $1259 for one of their truck motor 350 longblocks. They have reconditioned ones for $878, and a high performance one with a bigger cam and valves for $2199.

    What do you guys think?
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2013
  2. brad chevy
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 2,627

    brad chevy
    Member

    Summit still sells 350 longblock delivered to your door $1499 no core charge.Have bought 3 of them,no problem at all.
     
  3. plaintoast
    Joined: Oct 23, 2012
    Posts: 13

    plaintoast
    Member
    from mora

    as the owner of a quality performance/race engine shop, the only thing I'll say is i would be charging about 25-2700 for a pretty well stock rebuild, using quality components only. and that you get what you pay for.
     
  4. FiddyFour
    Joined: Dec 31, 2004
    Posts: 9,007

    FiddyFour
    Member

    i dont understand why you started another thread asking the same question that you asked three days ago...
     

  5. spiderdeville
    Joined: Jun 30, 2007
    Posts: 1,134

    spiderdeville
    Member
    from BOGOTA,NJ

    maybe he wants installation included in the price
     
  6. PT
    There is some truth to what you say but you are ignoring one small detail. If you buy a long block from summit you are essentially buying a crate motor. Many reputable companies selling crate motors are using quality components, they buy in bulk and can buy cheaper then say you or I can.

    I personally would prefer a purpose built motor by an engine builder/machinist but I cannot make a general statement that crate motors don't have quality components.

    As for gearhead I have heard good and bad about them, the fellas that get a good one have nothing but good to say about them and the fellas that get a bad one have nothing but bad to say about them. I have not used them because I build my own as a rule. But I know that lots of fellas have used them with good success.
     
  7. spiderdeville
    Joined: Jun 30, 2007
    Posts: 1,134

    spiderdeville
    Member
    from BOGOTA,NJ

    1600 for a GM crate motor with a 3 year 100k warranty is a real good deal
     
  8. SD56
    Joined: Feb 16, 2012
    Posts: 15

    SD56
    Member

    I didn't ask the same question 3-days ago. This was regarding Gearhead engines. I was trying to get peoples opinions on them because there is mixed reviews online. It sounds like its a little risky to go with them. The last thing I need is to have to pull the engine and send it back.

    I like the idea of their high performance 350 with the bigger cam and valves. They said it has 300 hp and 372 lbs. of torque. The cost on it is $2199 and they dont require a core charge. But, its back ordered for 3 weeks.

    At about $2K I could go with the 290 hp crate and would have it in like 4 days.
     
  9. Rich Rogers
    Joined: Apr 8, 2006
    Posts: 2,018

    Rich Rogers
    Member

    Looks like you just answered your own question SD56. There's probably a torque difference as well but if you can save alittle cash and have it in 4 days plus trust where you got it from, I"d be going that route...Good luck
     
  10. plaintoast
    Joined: Oct 23, 2012
    Posts: 13

    plaintoast
    Member
    from mora

    having seen the inside of several crate engines (i only consider new gm engines to truly be crate engines) from both gm and other sources, you are correct that some install quality parts, many others are installing the cheapest they can buy. my bigger problem with the production line type of stuff is the "quality" of the machine work. very, very few will even bother to hone the blocks with a torque plate, the sizing is often "good enough that it'll spin" etc. its a matter of efficiency vs. quality, and if that means having to warranty some motors (good luck with that btw, that's why i end up seeing them) they do enough volume fast enough and cheap enough to swallow that.
    your typical quality machine shop/rebuilder does not want to see any comebacks because its a rather large hit to the bottom line of a smaller shop.
     
  11. Some good info and some very good points here.
     
  12. SD56
    Joined: Feb 16, 2012
    Posts: 15

    SD56
    Member

    Good points Plaintoast. Has anyone heard of or used http://westcoastengines.com/categories/browse-engines.html

    383 Stroker for $2300 with a 5 year/50,000 mile warranty out of Reno NV. They've got a few options that look good. Testimonials on their site look real. Was going to contact a few of the shops that work with them to verify.
     
  13. As stated, you generally get what you pay for. Stay away from the 'reconditioned' motors, as those will likely have 'selected' used parts in them. I've seen some pretty serious corners cut on those (knurled OEM pistons, cut-down valve stems) and these won't last all that long.

    The fact that they offer such would make them suspect to me....
     
  14. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    Great advise. When I considered an upgrade, this time around, I chose a friend who has an impeccable reputation as an engine builder. I saw the block, the heads and what he had done to them. I had been to his place, so I had seen what he works on. These things made my decision. My considerably upgraded 350 is going to run about $2,500. GM Performance has a special of $2,695, but I don't know any of those guys or what parts they used.

    He's installing my carb, intake and I tossed in a new distributor. He's using all new parts, that I get called about and questioned for approval. I can drop by and see what's going on, any time I please. But I don't because I trust him and his knowledge.

    My advice, like the advice given, get in touch with a guy or shop that does work that you can verify with other area car guys. A warranty is great. But when something goes wrong, being able to go right to the shop and the person who did the work, is worth a lot more. In my opinion.
     
  15. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    What does a fake testimonial look like?:D
     
  16. SD56
    Joined: Feb 16, 2012
    Posts: 15

    SD56
    Member

    The reason why I said the West Coast Engines testimonials looked real is because they're mostly from shops. I'm thinking of contacting those shops to get some more info about their engines.
     
  17. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    Ahhh..... That actually sounds like a good idea. I'd be Google searching too.
     
  18. manyolcars
    Joined: Mar 30, 2001
    Posts: 8,394

    manyolcars

    I didnt think rebuilt engines could be called crate motors. Isnt that name reserved for new engines from GM only?
     
  19. lakeroadster
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
    Posts: 604

    lakeroadster
    Member
    from *

    For me buying from my "local engine guy" has been a no brainer. "Charlie" works out of a garage attached to his house and works by himself. He is well known in his part of the country and he stands behind his work. He delivered the engines he rebuilt for me in the back of his mid 80's S-10, sitting on a tire, not 'cause I asked him to, but because he wanted to see the old hot rod "his" engine was going into. Included in his pricing is him being there at the initial start up to set the valves and timing and to make sure there are no issues. He's built hundreds of motors and still gets a grin on his face when it fires the first time.

    Now that I've moved 1200 miles away and the engine in my '65 C10 is a bit tired I'm thinking of making a road trip to Charlie's house. I know he could use my money more than General Motors or the folks at Summit.

    Good people ya know.... it's a big part of "it".
     
  20. plaintoast
    Joined: Oct 23, 2012
    Posts: 13

    plaintoast
    Member
    from mora

    that used to be the case, but the popularity of them caused other rebuilders to start using the term generically to mean a basic rebuilt engine. if you read the fine details you'll see many of them using terms like selected "seasoned" blocks, heads, connecting rods etc.
    that's not to say they are not good parts, and if done correctly would be better than they were originally machined, but they are not new.
     
  21. Man, I wish I knew somebody like that around here.
     
  22. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    That's MY guy!:D Not really, but you described mine pretty well. Home grown is the tits.
     
  23. 2racer
    Joined: Sep 1, 2011
    Posts: 960

    2racer
    Member

    it's ok to put one of those in a barn find as long as it wasn't really found in a real barn...
     
  24. SD56
    Joined: Feb 16, 2012
    Posts: 15

    SD56
    Member

    Its a hard decision. I was originally just going to go with a local shop in Oceanside called Machine Tech. They build some really nice racing motors and come highly recommended. They quoted $1800 for my 350 rebuilt with a 1 year/12,000 mile warranty.

    It's a tough one because I don't know how much longer I'm going to keep the truck. I might sell it. A 383 for $2300 is damn tempting and would probably add more value to the truck.

    I know though that you get what you pay for and getting it done local is the safest way to go usually but temptations a bitch.
     
  25. Look into a reman 350 through LKQ Corp. They offer a 3 year unlimited mileage, NO FAULT warranty. That means the first one is on them
     
  26. Speed Gems
    Joined: Jul 17, 2012
    Posts: 3,043

    Speed Gems
    Member

    For complete crate or re manufactured engines some of those prices sound cheaper then the sum of there "quality" parts.:eek: For the extra $300-500 bucks I think i'd want to go with a builder I could see face to face instead of dealing with an unknown builder and going thought the mail, and like Plaintoast says shops like his don't want to deal with comebacks. And besides if you buy a crate engine from GM your money is going to MEXICO instead of staying here in the good ole U.S.A. I happen to know this gentleman, he is a one man shop dedicated to quality machine work and using only American made parts and tooling (your money stays here) whenever possible.

    Oh, and his wife stitches a pretty mean interior too! :D
     
  27. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    My engine guys wife, just had a baby girl. When I gave him a 50% deposit (that he didn't ask for), I could see a little weight lift off his shoulders. Keeping the money home is a cool thing sometimes.
     

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