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Old 10-05-2016, 11:17 AM   #1
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New drivetrain

I recently purchased a 1994 bounded 32ft. She's in great shape cosmetically and functionally as far as systems go everything works great. Except for the engine is blown.

I am going to spend some time modernizing the interior and updating things.

I picked up the unit for 5000 so it was a pretty good deal.

However I am looking at modernizing the drive train aND would like to go with ideally a diesel or a more modern efficient gas engine obviously the transmission would probably need to be updated as well. Just looking for some suggestions.


As an alternative I can have the 454 remanufactured better than new factory for around 4000 + re&recosts but would really like something more efficient.

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Old 10-05-2016, 11:44 AM   #2
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Not sure what you mean by more efficient but none of the gas coaches get stellar mileage. That being said, think I would go with the 454 and pay particular attention to known issues such as exhaust manifolds, etc. Would upgrade to headers.

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Old 10-05-2016, 12:16 PM   #3
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I would try to find a 496 or 502. Both are avail as crate engines (maybe not too much 496 anymore). The 502 come with a complete control module. You would likely need a 4-90E trans but I think the control modules also work for them. Should work aside from shortening drive shaft.

Bigblocks in RVs are really tough to get enough airflow to the back cyls in the 'dog house'. I would consider adding a bilge blower fan that you can route air to the back cyls especially on passenger side. They say the plug wires will take a beating back there due to heat. Might also start with some Jacobs ceramic wires and also some of the nomex/dynamat type slip over boots.

And make sure you go with specific RV design headers. not only will they have thicker flanges and gaskets but they will also have longer tubes optimized for towing rpm.
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