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Discussion Starter #1
I have an old worn out 318 in my 1976 D-100 2WD and I am thinking on putting in another engine. I have the opportunity to get either a low mileage 360 or 440 both with 727 transmission for $650.00 (is that a good price on either???). I am really looking for fuel economy but would like to have power when needed. I know that different engine setups and parts ect... can effect fuel economy and performance but my question is how much of a difference is the fuel economy really between a 360 and 440 with similar engine setups? I am going to put a 4 barrel carb (or fuel injection), headers, dual exhaust, electric fan and aluminum radiator on which ever engine I get either the 360 or 440. Is there any pros vs cons and anything I need to look for on either engine to get the best ones I can get?

Any help and insight is greatly appreciated.

thanks,
PD
 

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Well on my truck I went from a 318 to a 360 and I did a nice little upgrade by getting in early 90s A500 with the 4 speed Overdrive with lock up for fuel economy. Since you mentioned fuel economy that would probably automatically dictate that you stick with the 360 since it is a concern. Obviously the 440 is going to need a lot more gas to keep it happy. I would also say if you need to be Towing something heavy fairly often then the 440 would be the better choice. Mine is a daily driver Cruiser or so for me I am concerned about fuel economy. Plus with the 440 you should upgrade the front coil springs and sway bars to handle the extra weight from the small block stuff that's in there now. The 360 is going to require one new motor mount bracket because it's different than the 318. Bouchillon performance in South Carolina has some of those parts that you'll need. I have a spare motor mount if I can find it, lol. Coilsprings.com made me some lowering springs that worked out nicely but they could make you some heavier ones for the 440. Viking shock has some small and big block coil over kits that I can get you a good deal on. I'm about to order some for my truck so I can adjust the height and get a smoother ride. Since you're going to be buying all new accessories the big block or small block could go either way. The one thing you may need to get is a big block engine wiring harness and of course the motor mounts. That's about all I can think of for now.

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Discussion Starter #5
Im probably going with the 360 as I want the best fuel economy. Not really hauling anything except a camper maybe 2 times and that is about it. some years ago my 318 had the camper on the truck and it did OK so I believe the 360 should do better then my 318. Another question I have is I have read of people talking about certain years of engines (blocks ???) being better like earlier 70's years (72 - 75 for example) and also that the heads were better from earlier years. Can someone explain why? And what years for the block and heads are the best and what i should look for.

thank you for all your help.
 

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From what i understand engines built before the mid 80s were better because they were built to be spinning at 4grand and above on rpms. Once overdrive was introduced engines were built less robust. However engines built in the 60s were built to handle leaded gasoline. However the biggest downside to those eras was the fact the cams were flat tappet camshafts. In the 80s roller camshafts were phased in making them less susceptible to breaking.
 

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Yeah based on what you're saying pretty much any good block will be fine as long as you Sonic check it and all that stuff to make sure it's not cracked or otherwise no good for rebuild. The best thing would be to find a late model 5.9 Magnum motor those Motors last a very long time so there's very little bored where because it's fuel injected and there's less fuel wash down. I've talked to one guy that has over 200k on his work van with no oil burning issues. The cylinder heads and intake are problematic though. The hot ticket is a magnum shortblock, with new enginequest heads from rockauto.com, edelbrock rpm air gap and carb or efi. Only issue is if wanting to run mechanical fuel pump then you'll need the cam snout extension kit from Hughesengines.com for 26 bucks and the LA timing cover or just add an in tank fuel pump from tanksinc.com and use the magnum timing cover with serpentine belt setup which is what I did with exception of the engine quest heads. My original oem ones haven't cracked in between the valves yet which is a very common problem hence the problem solver head from engine quest that fixed the issue and made some nice improvements over the stock head in terms of flow etc.

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm going to get some casting numbers of acouple of different 360 motors to see what information I can find out about them. Is there anything else cast number wise I should ask for?

thanks,
 
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