Author Topic: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?  (Read 1602 times)

Offline 454burb

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could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« on: February 11, 2012, 08:05:25 PM »
im looking to buy a 1986 k20 that was a 292 orginally but owner tells me he ordered a 1980 454 engine for a k30 in 1987 to put in it because it didnt have smog equipment was this possible back then?

Offline bigchevyc30

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2012, 08:11:04 PM »
last thing i know the 20 series had to follow the emmission quide lines back then and just cause it would have a motor that didnt require it the vehicle itself still would at it under the so called heavy duty emmission rating. but you could have the 454 in the truck just it would still have to follow the original emmission set ups
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Offline bake74

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2012, 09:59:20 PM »
im looking to buy a 1986 k20 that was a 292 orginally but owner tells me he ordered a 1980 454 engine for a k30 in 1987 to put in it because it didnt have smog equipment was this possible back then?

      #1:  Where did the PO live at the time.  All states are different in smog requirements, but all states needed something for smog.  The only exceptions were the federal heave duty trucks, they required very minimum smog.
      #2:  Before you agree to buy it (something to me sounds fishy, a k20 with a 292  ::)), if you really like the truck and want it, tell him you need to take it to a smog check station to have a test done (you will pay oh course), if it passes you will buy on spot. 
     That right there will tell you whether he was telling you the truth most of the time. (he wont agree most of the time if he knows it wont pass). 
     I have been down this road several times ( I am doing it again with a 79 blazer my son got for free and someone swapped in a 454 when it came with a 400), let me tell you from experience, getting something smogged that has been changed is a big P.I.T.A..
     Good luck and keep us informed.
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Offline Blazin

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2012, 07:27:26 AM »
Not sure when the last 292  was available. I do know that several years ago I looked at an 84 K20 that was all original low miles, but some what rusty. It was a 292, with an SM465, and 208 T case.
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Offline bake74

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #4 on: February 12, 2012, 08:27:04 AM »
Not sure when the last 292  was available. I do know that several years ago I looked at an 84 K20 that was all original low miles, but some what rusty. It was a 292, with an SM465, and 208 T case.

      Now why would they put a 292 in a k20 ?  That makes no sense to me, you wouldn't even be able to tow with it.
#1: The easiest and most obvious solution to any problem is 99% of the time correct.
#2: There is no such thing as impossible, it just takes longer.
  74 k10, 77k10    Tom

Offline Blazin

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2012, 09:33:02 AM »
I have had three trucks with 292s. One was a 75 K10, SM465, with 3:73s it was a parts truck I got for free, it didn't run. The other two were 76, and 78 K20s, SM465s, with 4:10s. The 76 ran but was rotted out. The 78 I drove for about a year and a half before it lost oil pressure. I replaced it with a 350. That 292 had some torque. I would run one in a 3/4 ton again.

I also know an older guy in town that doesn't run it anymore but still has a 74 C30 single rear wheel pickup that has a 292, SM465, with 4:10s. Years ago I worked on it for several years when I had a small shop of my own. Funny thing is it was badged as a C20, but one of the first jobs I did was replace a wheel bearing. I got the parts ahead of time, but they were not correct. I took the old ones to the parts store. Ended up matching up to C30 parts numbers. Same thing when I did the rear brakes. they too matched up to 1 ton parts.
My 84 K20 had something wrong with it one time when I had his truck there. I called him when his truck was done, and asked if I could run a boat I had painted back to the marina with his truck before he picked it up. It towed better than my K20 with a 350, SM465, and 3:73 gears.
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Offline bake74

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2012, 11:47:04 AM »
     Well now I know, never had the chance to drive a straight 6 in a truck.  If I come across one I might have to give it a better look.
#1: The easiest and most obvious solution to any problem is 99% of the time correct.
#2: There is no such thing as impossible, it just takes longer.
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Offline zieg85

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2012, 01:36:38 PM »
I'd love to try a 292 for pulling.  The 300 Furd I-6 was no slouch when it came to pulling and the old 250 I-6 in my 72 Cheyenne K20 hauled my stock car just fine with the 4.10
1985 C30 Custom Deluxe Ext. cab 350 TH400 4.56 
1985 C20 Scottsdale 7.4L 4 speed 3.21
1986 C10 Custom Deluxe 5.7L A833 2.73

Offline Jason S

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2012, 02:55:00 PM »
Years ago I worked on it for several years...

There must've been a heck of a lot wrong with the truck... :P

Now why would they put a 292 in a k20 ?  That makes no sense to me, you wouldn't even be able to tow with it.

Straight 6's have tons of low end torque. I had a Ford with the fuel injected 300 I-6 and T-19 (granny 4-spd) w/ 3.55's and that truck had great towing power and wasn't bad on gas mileage. It didn't have any top end to it, all the power was down low on the rpm band.

Many years ago, I saw a '85 or '86 K30 Crew Cab at a used car lot in Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Not having to be anywhere in a hurry, I stopped just to look it over.
It was a former Canadian Railway truck, besides the metric speedometer/odometer, the funny thing was it had a 292 I-6 with a granny four speed. 
Overall, I thought it was a pretty cool truck; especially with it having the I-6.

As for the 454 swapout...  I don't see any reason why you couldn't order a 454 that would be correct for a 1980. You can order Goodwrench engines like that now.  However, when exactly did the engine go into the truck?

I find it hard to believe that someone would buy a brand new truck that didn't have the engine they wanted and a year later swap in another completely different engine.  In 1987, the 1986 pickup would've still been under the factory warranty (unless the guy drove a whole lot). That's not to say it couldn't be done, I personally find it a bit strange.
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Offline 454burb

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2012, 04:03:25 PM »
ok guy thanks for all the information and i personally believe that it is a 1986 k30 454 it has the remote power steering resourvor on it and seems alot more likely the vin is 1gcgk24txgj146807

Offline rustyMUD

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #10 on: February 13, 2012, 02:15:16 PM »

      Now why would they put a 292 in a k20 ?  That makes no sense to me, you wouldn't even be able to tow with it.
      Didn't you know that they were the STANDARD engine in 3/4 ton and one ton trucks?  And not just any 3/4 tons either, they had to be the heavy duty C6P package.  292's were only found in these trucks because they had "heavy duty emissions".  The threshold for heavy vs. light emissions was 6,000 lbs GVWR in the seventies and 8,600 lbs in the early to mid eighties.  Starting in 87, everything had catalytic converters regardless of GVWR. 
   
    Blazin and Jason set things straight about the great low-end torque of these engines, but as the owner of a 292 powered K25, I feel obligated to add my two cents. 

    Straight sixes, regardless of make, are known for their low end torque.  This is in part due to the 120 degree crank design.  The 292 is benefited by a massive 4.12 inch stroke.  They make peak torque at 1,600 rpm and can be lugged down very low, much lower than a v8, which would start knocking or simply stall. 

     When it comes to towing, 292's do a fantastic job considering what they are, that being a carbureted six cylinder.  Beyond 3/4 and one ton 73-87 trucks, 292's were also used as the base engine for the C40, C50 and C60 medium duty trucks with GVWR's up to 24,000 lbs.  No, you won't win any races hauling this much weight with a six cylinder, but it will do it.  There's a reason that GM used these engines in heavy duty and medium duty trucks.  Furthermore, during the eighties, most of the UPS trucks used 292 straight sixes that ran on propane.  Many school buses in the sixties and seventies had 292 straight six engines.  292's were also used in farm equipment such as combines. 

    On a personal side of things, I've had my 81 K25 for 4 years now.  I originally purchased the truck and planned to swap in a 350.  However, I came to understand the greatness of the 292 and soon ditched any plans of an engine swap.  I use it mostly for hauling un-split cordwood logs, which usually yields a 2,800-3,100 lb payload depending on how wet the wood is.  The 292 doesn't care about the weight.  It's slow empty and it's just as slow with 3,000 lbs of wood in the bed.  I also take the truck off roading, or "wheeling" as we call it around here.  Much of the terrain I encouter requires low speed crawling and lugging which again are benefited by the low end torque of the 292. 

454burb, that vin decodes to:
1=United States
GC=Chevrolet
G=GVWR 8001-9001 lbs
K=4WD
2=3/4 ton
4=2 door cab
T=292 straight six
X=check digit
G=1986
J=Janesville, Wisconsin
146807= production assembly sequence number.

So the truck is an 86 heavy duty 3/4 ton(GVWR 8-9,000) and did indeed have a 292 as the stock engine. 
« Last Edit: February 13, 2012, 08:36:16 PM by VileZambonie »

Offline 454burb

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2012, 04:57:18 PM »
ok thanks rustymud for vin decode and yeah the truck was a 292 now its a 454 now im trying to find out the engine date on the 454 casting number on back of block indicates its from 74 to 86 so when i pull the valve covers ill check the exact year thanks again bud

Offline Blazin

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Re: could you order 1980 k30 454 truck engine in 1986?
« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2012, 10:34:02 PM »
I have also seen them in medium duty trucks over the years. Funny thing is we had one come into the shop today. A 1978 C60, 292, 5 speed, with a split rear. Was in for a sticker, had 94,000 miles on it.
Some people are like Slinkies. Not really good for anything, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a flight of stairs

 


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