rvupgradestore.com Composet Products Fridge Defend
RV Life Magazine RV Park Reviews RV Trip Wizard

Author Topic: 1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement  (Read 689 times)

gaybes

  • Posts: 2
1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement
« on: April 13, 2017, 07:51:40 PM »
Hey guys,
Last year on a trip my 1977 27' class c chev p30 motorhome broke down near Whitefish MT. White smoke and leaking a large amount of coolant into the exhaust line left me thinking it needs to be rebuilt.
I was wondering if it would be worthwhile buying a crate engine+parts, rebuilding the entire engine, or just getting the head gasket replaced..
I've been in contact with some local mechanics who said i'm looking at anything between $4000--$7500 to fit a crate engine, and even more for a rebuild. Also that a standard 350 long block may not even be designed to carry the added load of such a big rig...

Quote
Rebuilding the engine you have would exceed the cost of replacement with a GM crate motor as long as they are still available. Most engine replacements in pick ups that I have had to do have been running $4500 to $7500. But these are newer engine replacements where the engine alone was $3500-$4500. GM crate motors of this vintage used to be around $1500-$1800, but I have not purchased one in over 15 years. Like I said this depends on availability. The engine made for a car is not the same as the engine made for heavy duty use in a motor home.There was a heavy duty 350 made for heavy duty use in trucks 1 ton and up, buses and motor home use. Not that it would not bolt up, it would go right in , it is just that the internal build of the engine is not as robust to be used in a heavy duty application.

I am fixing it up to sell it as it's currently sitting on a random persons farm and I don't want to leave it on their property. I can fetch $8000-$10000 for the rv itself I just want to make sure it's going to be worth my while without going in too a mechanic knowing nothing and getting absolutely bent over.

Thanks for any tips guys!
Kyle


Charlie 5320

  • ---
  • Posts: 2121
Re: 1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2017, 08:23:06 PM »
Sorry to say I doubt very much you could sell the rig for what the engine replacement cost IF the rig is in EXCELLENT condition. If it were mine, I'd cut my ties and sell it to a person as is. But it won't bring much.
2003 National Dolphin 5320
496  8.1  Workhorse

98 Damon Daybreak 3130
GM Vortech 454  4L80E
SOLD

Old_Crow

  • ---
  • Posts: 892
  • Former Phantom Fixer
Re: 1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2017, 07:42:32 AM »
Just for grins, call a good sized Chevy dealer's parts dept.  The 350 crate motor used in the G-vans(which is what your Class C is built on)used to be among the cheapest of the "crate" motors.  Bigger dealers buy them in volume and get good prices on them.
They aren't special for motor home use(at least back in the 70's they weren't).  Also, the motor home body shouldn't add anything to the labor on a Class C, since you take the grille out and remove the motor though the front.  Only limiting thing I can see is the shop having room to get the whole thing into the building.

Pretty sure you're wasting your time trying to sell it with a dead motor.
Wally Crow
Retired 30 year ASE Master Auto Tech
Y2K Bounder 36S F53
'03 Jeep Wrangler Sahara

RoyM

  • ---
  • Posts: 1976
Re: 1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2017, 12:40:25 PM »
8-10 g's for a 40 year old class C or any rv of that age is not very realistic. Unless you can do the work yourself and plan to keep running it until the wheels fall off you would just be throwing hard earned money away. I would turn the plates in, have it towed to a wrecking yard and call it a day. Just my 2 cents Cdn which at this point is not worth a lot.
Ram 2500 diesel
Prowler fifth wheel
Urge to travel

Back2PA

  • Photo moderator
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 3534
  • (Formerly known as Sun2Retire)
Re: 1977 Class C Chev Engine Replacement
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2017, 01:09:36 PM »
I was wondering if it would be worthwhile buying a crate engine+parts, rebuilding the entire engine, or just getting the head gasket replaced..

It doesn't make sense to me to be talking about a crate engine when you haven't determined if a head gasket will fix the issue. If you can spend $12-1500 and get it back on the road, you can either continue using it yourself or sell it and the repair will be worth it. As others have stated, there is very little chance you'll get your money back putting a new motor in an old rig.

Before you go the head gasket route make sure the issue is thoroughly diagnosed so you're certain the gasket will fix the problem.
Scott
Fulltiming in a 2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350
Eezrv TPMS, 970W Solar, Tri-Metric Battery monitor
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab toad
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster toad braking system