383, 454 Gas V8 engine sources- any experience?

Discussion in 'Gas Engines' started by Toolate, Sep 9, 2013.

  1. Toolate
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Location: CT (Western)

    Toolate Junior Member

    Looking into one for my 30' Sisu (maybe diesel but so much $) and there are so many different sources but so many have bad reviews online. Please post your good or bad stories regarding any of them.

    Michigan Motorz
    DaddyO's marine
    ebasicpower
    1800runsright

    Hoping to find a number of people who have had good experiences with the same company.

    Thanks!
     
  2. FAST FRED
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    Location: Conn in summers , Ortona FL in winter , with big d

    FAST FRED Senior Member

    First stop should be any GM dealer , they sell factory fresh engines to many power specs.

    Long block, short block , and talk to the counter guy when you buy the catalog and find out when the next sale will be.
     
  3. Toolate
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Location: CT (Western)

    Toolate Junior Member

    Not sure if I understand you. What do you mean a GM dealer?
     
  4. powerabout
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: Melbourne/Singapore/Italy

    powerabout Senior Member

    some new company , never heard of it myself called General Motors
    apparently they have made a few engines that ended up in boats..
    LOL
     
  5. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Buying factory direct crate motors from GM, Ford, Chrysler, etc. is about twice as much as just buying a rebuilt engine from a local rebuilder.

    A small block Chevy (350 gen 2, with 2 piece rear main, 220 - 240 HP) from a local rebuilder will be in the $1,500 - $2,200 range, while the exact same engine from GM will be 4k or more. Even the specialized marine engine builders (like FirstMate), will sell you a full up 350 long block for $1,800 (full retail), which is still way better then the factory crate engines.

    You've listed a 383 and a 454. These are quite different engines, one is a stroked small block, the other a big block. These too are available, but expect to add a full grand to them (at least), compared to a standard small block.

    As to which supplier you elect to use, well this is up to you. The reason you see a lot of negative stuff about companies is more a statistical issue, than a poorly run company thing. The reason is simple. Most folks that have a good experience with a vendor don't go on line and praise them, but folks that have had a bad experience will go on line and condemn them. This makes for lots of derogatory comments about a company, without a fair showing of the good efforts they might have also had. Every company screws up, so don't put too much weight in what you see on Angie's List, as most of these folks are trying to piss up a rope, while the vast majority of the other customers are happy. There's not much worse than a bunch of dissonant opinions, from people who's expertise is in another field. Just what the world needs, more uninformed negative opinions about things they don't fully understand.

    Call each company and get a feel for their service staff.
     
  6. FAST FRED
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    Location: Conn in summers , Ortona FL in winter , with big d

    FAST FRED Senior Member

    This makes for lots of derogatory comments about a company, without a fair showing of the good efforts they might have also had. Every company screws up, so don't put too much weight in what you see on Angie's List, as most of these folks are trying to piss up a rope,

    It only takes one garbage rebuild, requiring removal and shipping back to the rebuilder to make even the mild mannered upset.

    Weeks of time lost , and the real question , will they stand behind their warentee?

    IF you want a quality rebuild ask the local speed shop machinist who does good work.
     
  7. Toolate
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Toolate Junior Member

    Iknow who GM is (have 3 vehicles and only owned Chevy's and GMC's my whole life except for that one Olds but it still counts) but didnt think you could buy a marinized engine from them. Am I wrong?
     
  8. powerabout
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: Melbourne/Singapore/Italy

    powerabout Senior Member

    yes and no
    They make the marine spec base engines for everyone as in long block suitable for sea water cooling ( stock horsepower ones that is) but I have never seen GM ( USA ) marinising equipment on them like exhaust manifolds etc.
    Are you after a complete package as in wiring loom and dash or just a long block?
     
  9. Toolate
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Toolate Junior Member

    I'm doing a complete repower so I'm looking for a crate engine basically. I still am surprised that general motors makes long blocks though. Definitely not going to go that way Because I am no engine builder.
     
  10. powerabout
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    Location: Melbourne/Singapore/Italy

    powerabout Senior Member

  11. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Even a crate engine will need to have some stuff transferred or other wise installed on it - exhaust and cooling systems would be typical.

    Again, I wouldn't buy direct GM replacements, but would use a application specific builder or vendor. I'm not sure where you are, but I have several local engine builders in my area or I can mail order an engine and have it drop shipped from their shop, to my driveway.

    If you want a full up marine assembly, you'll need to go through Crusader or Mercruiser or one of the other outfits that build full up assemblies though you'll pay for this convenience.

    GM marine offering can be had as complete assemblies, less the exhaust, but do include induction and coolant water pumps (not raw water).
     
  12. powerabout
    Joined: Nov 2007
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    powerabout Senior Member

    Hi Par
    will you local guys install the GM marine cams in them?
    thanks
     
  13. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    They'll install what ever cam I like.
     
  14. Toolate
    Joined: Sep 2013
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    Toolate Junior Member

    So it sounds like you have plenty of experience with this stuff. Can we kick the can a little PAR?

    My boat is a 30' 1984 Sisu downeaster with round chines and currently has a chrysler 318 V8 rated at 235 hp and it will make about 14kts at 3400 which is too slow for me. It is a displacement hull and I understand about hull speeds etc so I dont want to make it or expect it to cruise above maybe 16-18kts with any level of efficiency (less than 10 gph is efficient in my book).

    I am thinking of a crusader 383 that is rated at 375 hp but would honestly like a little more because I would like to have the ability to go faster, even at the cost of wasting gas, on occasion. I think this motor will cost me around $13,000.

    I want to cruise at 3200rpm tops because I think that is a safe, quiet speed for a v8 to go. I dont care about top speed as much as I would like to build the most torque at around 3200 that I could (cam design important) which is why I am open to a larger engine. Not sure what will fit but the next step seems to be a 454 which is a big step in size. Wish there was a 429 or something around there that could really be built to make massive low end torque..

    What does GM offer that would beat crusader? I am fine bolting up tins and a raw water pump in all reality if was to save me a pile of dough and get me more power in the process. Any thoughts anyone? PAR?

    The answer may be that I need to talk to both companies and I know I have to sort out my prop/trans etc. but we are just talking motors/power here.
     

  15. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    It all depends on you hull design really and it sounds like you're maxed out already. You could toss a 700 HP at this puppy and maybe get you to 16 knots, but this is a huge jump for such a little speed improvement, plus the massive fuel bill that will come with it.

    [​IMG]

    I'll assume this is the model you're playing with. Trust me, you're going about as good as this old gal can do. It's a semi displacement design and though she's fairly firm aft,

    [​IMG]

    she has too much drag and rocker to get much faster, regardless of the power you toss in her.

    Most of these are small block powered, some big blocks with professional usually opting for a 200 - 250 HP diesel. 17 to 17 MPH is it. If you completely empty the boat of everything that's not bolts or screwed to part of the boat, you can get 250 HP to push you to about 20 MPH, but the boat has to be naked.
     
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