Re dealer switching engines--- In 1967 one night a new yellow 427 Bel Air sedan donated its engine to the dealerships sponsored 396 Chevelle drag race car. It was back in the lot lineup the next morning with the 396 flags. Please do not tell anyone.
Interesting. The three speed ratio is such that I am not pulling much from a stop with 1st gear where it is. Surprised a buyer in 66 would have liked that in his work truck. Knowing what I know now the 4 speed would have been my pick even with the extra cost. That being said the 3 speed drives great on the roads and is comfortable to highway speeds. The 4x4 helps to get the firewood out to the roads.
under normal driving I doubt many use 1st in the SM420. if you are gtoing to pul some stumps it will help.' there were quite a few 4 x 4 suburbans with 3 speeds with a 4 x 4 you will have low range in the T?C to give you a lift if you need it. if you were on a farm or in the bush etc 1st would come in handy; not so much if it was always on pavement. now most 4 x 4 don't even go off pavement ron
Last edited by padresag; Mon Aug 08 2016 01:27 AM.
Back on the 292 story, I spoke with an old school bus mechanic who stated they would be replacing the 292’s every other week because the drivers would over rev the engine. They would put the 250 in them because they have a shorter stroke and were less likely to blow.
I have a 292 with the 4 speed and 511 gears in the rear. Always feel I need another gear to shift to on the highway. Oh well… who needs to go fast in a classic truck.
May 2020 - Time for an update. Truck had to come off the road in late 2017. I was losing too much fender and floor while driving and I had suspicion problem up front somewhere. I had an offer to garage the truck while restoring/repairing so I made the decision it was time for safety sake. By then I had collected most of the bits and pieces needed to do a fairly substantial refresh - I dare say almost restoration. Over the course two years going pretty strong and with the help of the ODSS, I was able to get pieces off and new(er) pieces on a POR(ed) frame. I found the suspension problem along the way. Spring bushing on front hanger was wallowed and the spring had way too much free play. Found some significant other rust problems that were addressed along the way, which made the decision to take "Flappy" off the road the right decision in hindsight. For those who have been through this process, the steps along the way and the time, $$, and frustrations are not captured in the write up or in the pictures. It rained. It was hot and cold some days. Pieces did not fit. The painter was not ready and when he said he was he really wasn't. When he had the truck he let it sit for most of a year. Discoveries and surprises which result in more $$ and frustration on some days. It is unfair to suggest surprises. Those that knew the truck, knew the condition under-neigh the skin. Suffice to say, most sheet metal was exported to China. Those bad days are mostly left out of the story and for the most part looking back they are mostly forgotten. Build sheet in grove box indicated a 292, so one was found and the 250 came out. Rebuild of transfer case as an confidence builder. New suspension, brakes, brake lines, etc. As close to stock as we can get these days. Hopefully, the result is like it might have been in 1966. Fast forward to fall / winter or 2020 when the painter was finally making progress. Goal had always been drive to Homecoming 2020 and deliver the truck to my son graduating from Virginia Tech. Neither event physically occurred, although my son did get his degree via the mail. Happy to report, the truck was ready to make the trip should either event occur. Thanks to George for saving the truck from the field in WV and thanks for giving me the chance to improve the truck's situation. My son and I hope to drive and fix the truck for some years to come.