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Discussion Starter • #1 a moment ago

Hi, Name is Greg. Recently bought an ‘84 El Camino with 5.0 305. She runs, but needs work. Big beginnings with carb rebuild and new engine.

Any ideas on a rough estimate of what I should pay for a Jasper 5.0 305 small block plus labor?...I got quoted $5,300 plus tax that included a $600 core credit...

Seems a bit high but I have no cost point of reference.
 

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I spent less than that for my full LS swap! Of course labor was provided by me and I took a couple years working part time but I agree with you, $5300 for a 305 sounds a lot high. Good idea to check here first. I'm sure someone here will have some better suggestions. I do know for sure if I was to up-grade to a crate motor I would use at least a 350ci.

Joe
 

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I purchased a new crate 350 / 300 HP engine from Jegs, by the time it was outfitted with water pump, starter, manifold (I had a new Holley carb) and other parts it was about $3200. I paid a reputable local shop $1800 to install. So $5000 for a new engine, running.
I wouldn't bother with a 305, simply doesn't have the potential of a 350.

Don't forget, you are dealing with an 30+ year old vehicle, everything will fail soon, especially when stressed with a new engine. I have replaced the radiator, added an electric helper fan, master cylinder, transmission service, brakes. What ever your budget is... double it!
 

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if its a 500hp 305, installed, with a 100k warranty,, then maybe, but I dout it ...
any idea what the Labor will be??
.
cant get anything from the web site without calling,,
so we don't know if its a rebuild or bran-new,, stock or modified,,
warranty or not...
.
heres some links
stock 305 longblock
.
mild to wild, SBC longblock
 

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It all depends on what you want. If you want to stay stock the estimate seems about right.
If you live in a strict emissions locale that might be your only option..
Have you evaluated the engine you have? Compression, leaks, smoke and run quality? Does it really need replaced?
JP
 

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I just looked up your other post and says you are in San Diego Cali. That changes a lot. I wish nothing but good luck! I love being in Texas! Anything older than 94 is smog exempt.

Hey, J.P. doesn't your car have the remnants of the smog equipment on your headers?


Joe
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I purchased a new crate 350 / 300 HP engine from Jegs, by the time it was outfitted with water pump, starter, manifold (I had a new Holley carb) and other parts it was about $3200. I paid a reputable local shop $1800 to install. So $5000 for a new engine, running.
I wouldn't bother with a 305, simply doesn't have the potential of a 350.

Don't forget, you are dealing with an 30+ year old vehicle, everything will fail soon, especially when stressed with a new engine. I have replaced the radiator, added an electric helper fan, master cylinder, transmission service, brakes. What ever your budget is... double it!
I am checking with shop now, who also does SMOG checks, to see if 350ci would be allowed as upgrade??? Also if allowed I need to compile a list of all of the changes that need to be made to computer, accessories, etc.
 

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If you were to swap to a 350, you'd probably be better off ditching the factory ecu and just running an HEI distributor. These cars don't have OBD so I can't imagine they'd be able to tell whether the ECU is working or not if the check engine light bulb is removed. A healthy 350 and a good set of cats should have you fine with emissions as well. These cars really aren't all that complicated with their wiring fortunately.
 

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If you were to swap to a 350, you'd probably be better off ditching the factory ecu and just running an HEI distributor. These cars don't have OBD so I can't imagine they'd be able to tell whether the ECU is working or not if the check engine light bulb is removed. A healthy 350 and a good set of cats should have you fine with emissions as well. These cars really aren't all that complicated with their wiring fortunately.
Please use caution. He is in California and has strict smog laws.
 

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I just looked up your other post and says you are in San Diego Cali. That changes a lot. I wish nothing but good luck! I love being in Texas! Anything older than 94 is smog exempt.

Hey, J.P. doesn't your car have the remnants of the smog equipment on your headers?


Joe
I have the 305 exhaust manifolds on the 350 with holes fir air tubes plugged. I still have all the original stuff except the intake and carb in my garage.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
So, I have an update based upon the consensus of all your feedback. I worked it out with my mechanic to put in the 350ci and I will have no issue with emissions for CA. Based upon the year I will be able to use all of my stock engine accessory equipment. However, some of that equipment looks a bit stressed and even though it will all get tested I opted to replace a few things. Fingers crossed I will not get too many surprises. I am having a new water pump and alternator installed and of course the belts and hoses replaced. The wiring will get evaluated as well as other misc. I already have new OE valve covers sitting in the vehicle and a rebuilt carburetor ready to throw on. I am having the transmission fluid and filter changed while up on the rack. I decided to go with the Jasper engine and since I am upgrading to the 350ci I have to pay a $600 core charge that would have been waived if I went with the 305. But, the 350ci is actually less expensive than the 305 so I only pay an additional $300 for the upgrade. All in all with everything stated above, labor, parts and fluids I am at an estimate of $5600. including tax. Based upon the previous thread responses I am ok with that estimate since the engine cost alone is about $2800., plus extra components.

After the smoke clears and I am cruising I will give you guys an update and happiness rating.

Thanks for all of the feedback...here we go...
 

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I will be following you and your engine replacement, as I live 90 miles north of you in Long Beach, CA. Six years ago, I had to replace my worn 305 with another 305, and had to keep my electronic Rochester quadrajet, to meet California smog rules and registration.
Keep us posted.
Gary
 

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In stead of putting a high compression small motor that has to work to make horsepower use a low compression 454 that's carbureted and has a points ignition. They make big power right off idle were you need it. Putting one in a small car like the el Camino it pretty much loafs and will last a long time. The big pay off is you get all this power and fun on 87 octane gas and have a motor that's always easy to start in the heat and is easy to service.. Those small motors have to work hard to give you all those horses while this big cube motors just loaf on cheap gasoline..

Another payoff is how cool a big block looks in that engine bay.. That's my 1978 low compression 454, TH400 with a 2:87 rear end. It smokes the tires anytime I want and cruises the highway at 100 with ease..

127222
 

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I would recommend a radiator upgrade (or a new replacement). I added an electric (pull) fan to help at low speeds.
The 350 is the way to go, price should include some basic warranty (promise?) from mechanic that "It'll work".
 

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@Nutlessmonkey
Just clarifying that the earliest discussions in your other thread were about the GMPP 350 engines.
I believe they have a casting number that shows as a new replacement part.

The Jasper 350s use a seasoned (previously used) 350 block.
They likely will have a block casting number that identifies the block to particular years and potentially the size in cubic inches.
Smog folks should check the block casting number. That may bring up additional questions.
Check with your mechanic.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I would recommend a radiator upgrade (or a new replacement). I added an electric (pull) fan to help at low speeds.
The 350 is the way to go, price should include some basic warranty (promise?) from mechanic that "It'll work".
Did you find that the standard radiator and fan insufficiently cooled? I don’t believe existing radiator is OE. I plan to have cooling system checked and will carefully consider your suggestion.

Thanks
 
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