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Discussion Starter #1
I am faced with a decision tomorrow; buy an 86 Caprice (4-barrel carb/700r4 tranny) or a 94 Caprice taxi w/200k+ miles. I'm leaning towards the 86 just because I can have it running much faster than dealing with all the EFI on the 94. Any advice on oil pans? Will the 86 block bolt up to the 66 Nova w/ solid motor mounts? How about mounting the 700r4 tranny, can the stock crossmember be easily modified to work?

Thank God the site is back up - I was going through withdrawals and had these important questions to ask prior to Sunday (when I get the 86 Caprice if I choose).

Thanks,
Bryan
 

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Well unless you are en expert and ready for a custom challenge with fabrication, I would definitly do the 86 caprice. Especially since the taxi has high miles....remember taxi miles are tough miles

Do this first and in a few years if you want to go the next level with the engine you can do it then.
 

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With either trans, you will need a new trans cross member, expect to spend $150-200 for the cross member. Either engine should bolt up if you use the '66 frame mounts. If you go with the 2004R (from the '86), the stock driveshaft will work but double check the length and yoke. The spline is probably the same so you can put it in but in my case it was a little short and this will ultimately cause problems with the bronze bushing in the trans tailshaft. Longer yokes are available to add about .5-.75" to the length. The 305 in the '86 may have a computer, electronic Quadrajet, and computer controlled distributor. If so, scrap those and go with a regular HEI and carb. If the taxi engine is an LT1 350, it may take a little longer to get going, but if you could pull this off you would be happier in the long run becasue once you get either one sorted out, they will probably be due for a re-build and you ultimately have more with the 350 LT1.
JMHO.
 

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I'd probably go with the '86, as the taxi has 200k miles. That's a lot of miles, especially for a taxi. They usually have pretty hard lives.
 

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I don't know........the 86 would be the "easy" option but when was roddin ever easy. IMO EFI is the way to go! no more carbs to tune, better mileage and driveability and you can't forget the cool factor. the LT1's are a awesome motor and run a long time. even worn out it will make more power than that 86 engine if it was freshly overhauled.
Yea it will cost a little more to install and hook everything up but there is so much aftermarket support for converting to EFI that it is too easy not to. I converted my old 69' Chev PU from carb to a 91 TBI motor, used vortec heads that I redrilled for the TBI intake, bought a painless harness, junkyard PCM and mallory 60FI fuel pump and it only took a weekend to swap the engine, redo the fuel system for return line and wire everything up, that was about 8 years ago and minus the cost of the engine, I only had about $700 in the whole EFI swap, a LT1 will cost a little more for the harness and PCM. It was the best mod i ever did to that truck, I basically didn't have to work on it again after that except for maintenance.
If you have the means, go with the 94 unless it has the 4.3L L99 engine, but those still run good in a big ole caprice.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
86 Caprice - sitting in the driveway

Thanks for all your comments. I had the 86 delivered last night - looks like it's been hit twice and used in a drive-by or something... but she runs and that's what matters. Unfortunately, I have to work today, but I will start labeling everything to prep for pulling the engine/tranny next weekend. I'll post picks once I get it installed.

Thanks,
Bryan
 
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