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Old 04-25-2017, 11:18 AM
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Hi all! I'm rather excited about my plans and I needed to share it all with like-minded people. I'll start with the back story:
When I was a 19 year old kid I had a 1985 S-10 Blazer 4x4 with a 2.8 V6 and manual tranny. I blew the motor one winter's night and decided to swap in a V8. I took the body off the 4x4 chassis and put it on a 2WD chassis and dropped in a 350 sbc with headers and 2" dual pipes, a TH350 trans with 2500 stall converter, drop spindles & rear swap and other assorted stuff.
This was back in the day before digital cameras and I never took pics before I grenaded that motor and was all bummed out. So the first thing I did was buy the 327 race motor from my dad and drop it in. Being young and stupid, I blew that one in short order as well. I gave up altogether and figured "stock never blew anything up" for the last 17 years.
Fast forward a lifetime:
A couple months ago I caught the bug again and thought I'd do something to make my '98 stand out. I don't have a time limit on the work, but there is a modest budget which I will post as I go. To start, I'll introduce Bernadette:

1998 Blazer 4x4 4 door automatic with 3-button transfer case and 4.3 Vortec-$450 bought in October 2015
K&N intake-free from donor truck
Plastic gas tank to replace rusted out steel tank-donor truck
Fuel Pump-$350 Partsource
MAF sensor-$125 Partsource
Plugs/wires/distributor/tune up stuff-$250 approx.
Rims/tires/side mirrors/VSS/wiper motors-donor truck
MPFI injector conversion-$20 from local pick-yer-part. Came off a 2003 Jimmy
Transfer Case Encoder Motor-$400 Partsource
Interior and exterior LED changeout (except headlights)-$100 from superbrightleds.com
I have to be forgetting some, but I do know most
Lastly, I'm just the second owner of the truck and receipts were in the glovebox for a replacement water pump, alternator and new multifunction switch to stop the dreaded clicky-click from the turn signals. All of that was done at the dealer under warranty prior to 2003.

I've had some time off of work lately, so I went ahead and bought a 5.0L Vortec from a 1998 full size truck. Yes, I am aware that is not a particularly strong motor and isn't really capable of high HP gains, but I just wanted to get it right for my first time after all these years-I can always build a 400+ at a later date and I wanted to keep the factory Vortec system. I also checked out JTR and have a V8 swap manual on the way here from sunny California (just in case). Let's throw this stuff on the tab:

5.0 Vortec with heads, intake & plenum, distributor, alternator bracket and exhaust manifolds-$250
Rebuild kit with gaskets, rings and bearings-$250 from ebay
Cam bearings-$41 from local engine shop
V8 swap manual-$50 or so from jagsthatrun.com (includes exchange rate and shipping to Canada)
I'm not going to include the cost of tools yet because they are an investment. But if I did... wow. I'll be able to open my own shop here soon!

Last edited by Jeffaroni; 04-25-2017 at 11:28 PM.
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:35 AM
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So far I've got the motor apart and the block cleaned and the pistons washed and grooves done. I polished the crank with some 800 grit sandpaper and a hockey skate lace-the truck had over 300,000km and all the bearings were in unbelievably spectacular shape, so I just removed the varnish and shined the journals up nice. I'm waiting for the bearing kit to show up, so that's as far as I get there for now. I honed the cylinders and checked for taper and out-of-round, and I am impressed.

I'll finish cleaning the lifters, pushrods and rockers, then port & polish the heads-the last one is only because I have the time. As soon as I figure out how to post pictures here, I'll show what I've got.

Thanks for now and I'll be in touch!
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:53 AM
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Some pics of the donor truck, the motor and related components I'm working on right now...
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FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0579.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0535.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0542.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0571.jpg  
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Old 04-25-2017, 11:59 AM
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All shiny and clean!
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Old 04-25-2017, 12:47 PM
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Looks like an awesome project! I don't think I've seen a 305 build yet. They are underrated in my opinion, they are definitely a good solid engine. I had a 94 k1500 with one, and never had a issue with it, and plenty of power to boot
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Old 04-27-2017, 07:35 AM
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The 305 is a good choice for the blazer. It should have been a factory option IMO.
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Old 04-27-2017, 08:12 AM
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Thanks for the support, guys! It's coming along nicely too! Got the lifters all apart and cleaned, as well as the cam and the rest of the valve components. I think today I'll head to the wrecker and snag me a MPFI spider assembly to refresh! I'm still waiting for the parts kit to arrive, but once it does I'll be cooking with fire!

I was looking at the motor mounts available online and I'm thinking I should be able to make them up using some scrap steel from work and my 120V garage welder. They won't be very professional looking, but they'll be free-and my budget will thank me...
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Old 04-27-2017, 08:24 AM
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Looks like a fun build.
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Old 05-14-2017, 02:07 AM
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Its been a couple weeks at least and I've finally got the motor done. I've been off work all this time, but my OCD makes me meticulous in cleaning and checking and cleaning again and checking again. I had a 2000 ZR2 that I was going to take suspension parts off of for a wider stance and the factory lift, but that will ultimately be too much work for not a whole lot of gain. Instead I'll just make some 2" shackle lifts and crank the t-bars until I can beef up the front suspension more. The tougher rear-end would be nice, but I've not got the space for it all right now.

Here are a few pictures of things:
​​​​​​​
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FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0588.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0590.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0591.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0592.jpg   FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0595.jpg  

FrankenBlazer Lives!-img_0600.jpg  
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Old 05-14-2017, 08:37 AM
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That engine is looking sweet, Good work!
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