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  #1  
Old 10-22-2013, 10:53 AM
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I have a '85 W150 with the 5.2L 318 V8. I was wanting to find an inexpensive way to get more power from it. Should i do a total overhaul or just clean it up? This is my first truck so i want it to be reliable and good on gas. Should i put a supercharger on it or not? Any ideas on what to do to it will be greatly appreciated. I have a large amount of engine bay to work with so size shouldn't be a problem.
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Old 10-22-2013, 12:47 PM
Flatlandor Flatlandor is offline
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The size of your engine bay is prolly not as important as the size of your wallet. Superchargers are not cheap and neither are the upgrades to the rest of the drivetrain that are most times needed to handle the additional power.

there is a lot to consider with your question.
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Old 10-22-2013, 03:54 PM
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The LA 318's have a miniscule cam. A new timing chain and gear will help get timing up to snuff, and with such a mild setup, you need every little bit of help you can get. In stock form, they run well, but totally run out of steam at 4,000rpm. Here's a perfect example of how a couple well-placed upgrades really wakes up the 318:
http://www.moparmusclemagazine.com/t...s/viewall.html
A 4V carb and intake, decent cam/springs, and better exhaust added 100hp to an otherwise stock 318, while still being completely streetable and reliable. The average 318 crank and rods have the stones to turn 6,000rpm, though an ARP rod and crank bolt upgrade would be a good idea if you're gonna do that a lot. My '69 318 was rebuilt using all original bolt hardware, running a CompCams 260 High Energy in the the 1980's...point being I routinely ran the crap out of it, shifting at 5,800rpm usually several times a day and it never broke. Start talking supercharger and that's a lotta cash for limited boost with the cast pistons. You'd need upgraded forged pistons for boost over 9psi. Also, before you go buying cams, you need to see what type you have. Mopar started using roller cams in the 318 around 1985, with truck models following the car introduction. With that many years gone by, no telling what you have in there now, so open it up and see.

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Old 10-22-2013, 08:04 PM
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LA 318's have miniscule heads. Drop a 360 in it's place and go have fun.
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Old 10-23-2013, 10:36 AM
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alright well thank y'all for helping me. i was also thinking that if i can find a diesel at a fair price then i might just do a total overhaul of the truck starting with the axles and leafs then the motor housing. Then id have to change out the gas tank and fuel lines. i guess it just depends on what happens in the next few months.
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Old 10-23-2013, 12:09 PM
Gen1dak Gen1dak is offline
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Much easier and cheaper to just GET a diesel truck. You started out asking about an inexpensive way to boost a stock 318, now you're rebuilding a truck and converting powerplants?
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Old 10-24-2013, 09:01 AM
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i know it may sound wierd but im debating on doing an inexpensive rebuild on the 318 or just a complete rebuild. But truely i am undecided. I might just do the rebuild so i can fix anything minor with the truck. I could go through and have a reason to tear the truck down and replace the worn out parts
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Old 10-24-2013, 06:38 PM
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That's why I'm saying a 360. You can find a Magnum 360 out of 90's/early 2000's Ram in a junkyard and put that in, all you need is a carb'd intake manifold. You start out with 100 more hp and lots more torque and it's physically a drop in. All your accessories should bolt right on to it.
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Old 10-28-2013, 10:37 AM
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Alright thank you for your input. I will seriously consider getting a 360 now. Are they easier to find parts for and tuning?
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Originally Posted by HemiLonestar View Post
That's why I'm saying a 360. You can find a Magnum 360 out of 90's/early 2000's Ram in a junkyard and put that in, all you need is a carb'd intake manifold. You start out with 100 more hp and lots more torque and it's physically a drop in. All your accessories should bolt right on to it.
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Old 10-28-2013, 11:25 AM
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It's aboutt he same with parts. Since you're going with a carb, all you need to do is pull the factory distributor for the EFI (no vacuum advance) and replace it with an electronic one. Hell, the one out of your 318 shoud drop right in. 360 Magnum's in the trucks are rated 245hp net at the flywheel. Since I don't see yours being as choked up intake and exhaust wise, with a little timing and carb tweaking on a bone stock engine (stock heads and cam) 260hp should be a gimme. With the right heads/head work and a good cam, these engines are easily capable of 400hp. What trans do you have? Is it a A904 derivative? If you can find one, an early model A518 will work great. It's basically a A727 small block trans with an OD unit and a lock up converter. The rest of the trans is still hydraulic, but the OD is electronic; all you need to do is wire up an on/off switch to activate/deactivate the OD. This would allow you to put some better gears in.
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