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Old 03-12-2015, 01:23 PM   #1
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1976 24' Argosy 24
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Argosy Drivetrain Swap

I picked up a donor vehicle so I can swap its drivetrain into my Argosy. Its not a major swap, still using the good ole 454 but I will finally get overdrive. I found a 1992 Chevy 3500 dually with a gentle 120k. It has the 454 with TBI and a 4l80e transmission. Runs good, no smoke, shifts smooth. With a little rebuilding and some upgrades I should have it ready for the fall/winter of this year.
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Old 03-13-2015, 06:55 PM   #2
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Hope it goes well for you, the Argosy motors are pretty 'embedded' and I think will take some effort to get out.

Are you planning to come out the front, or get it up on a ramp so it can come out from below?
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Old 03-16-2015, 06:23 AM   #3
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I plan on going out the front. A neighbor has a fork lift so that should make things a bit easier.
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Old 03-16-2015, 12:11 PM   #4
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I think you have the early type grille, which is a pain to get off (if it is like mine, they had to drill out the rivets all the way around) but once it is off there is a lot of space, to get to the radiator etc.

I only have the 350 but can take photos of what is involved in removing the grille if it would be helpful - mine is still off.
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Old 03-18-2015, 08:41 AM   #5
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pictures would be very helpful. I have a pretty good idea as to what needs to happen to get it out but extra help is always better than no help!
thank you
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Old 03-29-2015, 02:36 PM   #6
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As you probably know the early type grille is riveted in, so as well as removing the access door above the grille, all the rivets had to come out.





Then the plates holding the headllights on both sides had to come out (again) riveted. The radiator has to come out (mine has been recored).



The oil cooler and A/C condense can stay contented and be swung out of the way....even then the engine is a long way back.

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Old 03-29-2015, 05:32 PM   #7
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There is a lot going on from the grill to the motor. I had to break mine down all the way to get to the harmonic balancer. I did the grunt work of disassembly and putting it all back in place but left the motor work to the mechanic. I "think" it was worth it, there were quite a few hours in getting back that far. No rivets on the 310 but some real fun nuts n bolts to get to.....not. My hands looked like I had tried to bathe a pole cat when I got done. All good though getting to know the rig more. The torque spec for the retaining nut on the harmonic balancer was 400+ ft lbs. i had never seen a torque wrench that big in my life. It had to be well over 3.5ft long.
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Old 03-29-2015, 06:04 PM   #8
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400 plus foot pounds means I am simply going to put my impact wrench on it and hammer it pretty good...


1/2 Ton 4WD Truck, 72 Sovereign Hensley Arrow
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Old 03-30-2015, 10:42 AM   #9
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Thanks for the pictures, it looks like it will be a lot of 'fun'! As soon as I am done with my driveway restoration of my Dodge I will start tackling this!
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Old 05-13-2015, 01:04 PM   #10
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Matt, the engine removal and re-install isn't all that difficult. It's all the prep work to get to that point that's the killer!

I've got a 4L80E transmission for my Argosy that I hope to install someday but I'm going to wait until I at least have it road worthy. I've already got one to many projects to deal with without adding another.

I am definitely looking forward to your in progress pictures!

Brad
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Old 05-13-2015, 03:08 PM   #11
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My mind has been churning on this (never a good thing); what is involved in a swap to a 4L80E trans (my current 350 seems good)? I was under the impression it required some additional electrical work? And what is the advantage vs installing a GV overdrive?

If swapping a drive train why not go the whole hog and install a P7100 (non-computerized) 6BT/NV4500 combo?
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Old 05-13-2015, 04:13 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by martin300662 View Post
My mind has been churning on this (never a good thing); what is involved in a swap to a 4L80E trans (my current 350 seems good)? I was under the impression it required some additional electrical work? And what is the advantage vs installing a GV overdrive?

If swapping a drive train why not go the whole hog and install a P7100 (non-computerized) 6BT/NV4500 combo?
Martin,

If you haven't seen this thread turbo 400 4l80e swap browse through it and see if it doesn't answer most of your questions.

You will need to do some additional electrical work and there are various ways of accomplishing that. I really think our little 20' Argosies would really benefit from having some sort of overdrive mainly from the mpg perspective. The major mechanical change are shortening the drive shaft, swapping transmission mounts and method of shifting.

I'm interested in the 4L80E swap as I already have the transmission sitting on the shop floor. A gear vendors is nice especially if you have long term plans that can justify the payback.

Brad
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Old 05-13-2015, 07:06 PM   #13
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Thanks Brad

Reading through all the posts on the link (and the other posts reference in the link), made me categorize as "complicated, don't go there unless you have to"!

Nothing better than a dose of realism to stop my brain going off and embarking on something crazy!
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Old 05-14-2015, 06:30 AM   #14
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I think I am going to go there because I can! Things have been moving slowly at my house so I am not sure if I will get to it this winter or not. What I am throwing around is just swapping out the transmission instead of the whole engine. My engine has 25k miles on it and runs GREAT. The only difference between the one in the truck and the moho is about 100k miles and TBI.
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