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 > 1981 Chevy Truck vs Ford Truck

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FishOnOne

The Great State of Texas

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Posted: 08/16/22 06:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My parents had a 1981 truck so a interesting marketing video looking back.

Our 1981 truck never made 22 mpg hwy with a tail wind. I want to say it was ~16 mpg.
The Urethane clear pads mounted on the lower panel in front of the rear wheels cracked and looked bad
The 5.0 ESC engine was really good at towing compared to the other trucks in our camping group. (350, 351, 400)
Fords tailgates in that error were notorious for rusting out at the lower section and the lack of sealed ends could have been the reason

Was surprised at the number of slides stating * N/A in California [emoticon]

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bgum

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Posted: 08/16/22 07:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The pice of gas was 1.35 adjusted for inflation 2.42. Paint jobs and rust proofing were bad. Pollution control was a heavy burden.

Labman7

Midwest

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Posted: 08/16/22 08:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Had a 1980 GMC 3/4 with the 292 six and 4:56 axle. I drove it all over the National Parks of the west for 4 years with a 9 1/2 Coachman truck camper on it. Never had any problems anywhere driving through the mountains or on the flat land. It was the same engine they put in school buses. The body was going with rust is the only reason I got rid of it. Oh, yeh. It got 10.6 mpg with or without a load, in the mountains or not. And top speed was 78 mph. I added a 32-gal aux tank and could go almost 400 miles with 39 usable gals of gas. Now I get the same mileage with my Duramax pulling 14,000 lb of toyhauler, with a much better top speed available.

Lwiddis

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Posted: 08/17/22 08:22am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My ‘78 K20 400 cid Cheyenne was very similar to the featured Chevy. Payload about the same too and it ate gasoline with and without the camper mounted. Couldn’t go far even with the two 20 gallon tanks.


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FishOnOne

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Posted: 08/17/22 08:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Labman7 wrote:

Had a 1980 GMC 3/4 with the 292 six and 4:56 axle. I drove it all over the National Parks of the west for 4 years with a 9 1/2 Coachman truck camper on it. Never had any problems anywhere driving through the mountains or on the flat land. It was the same engine they put in school buses. The body was going with rust is the only reason I got rid of it. Oh, yeh. It got 10.6 mpg with or without a load, in the mountains or not. And top speed was 78 mph. I added a 32-gal aux tank and could go almost 400 miles with 39 usable gals of gas. Now I get the same mileage with my Duramax pulling 14,000 lb of toyhauler, with a much better top speed available.


I've never seen a 3/4 ton GM truck with a six.

I don't know what the rear end ratio was but I want to say around 70mph it was running pretty high rpm. Which reminds me it had the first gen overdrive transmission and you couldn't simply disengage OD with the column shifter, you had to disconnect a connector under the hood so that's how it stayed so that explains it not making 22mpg, which I still doubt it would make with OD engaged.

Lwiddis

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Posted: 08/17/22 10:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Fish, the base engine on the K20 in 1978 was the 292 cid in-line six. I have the manual. In fact on the K30 too.

Grit dog

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Posted: 08/17/22 11:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Straight 6 was available thru at least '86 in the 3/4 - 1 tons. 1/2 tons base option changed to the 4.3 V6 in the 80s.


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FishOnOne

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Posted: 08/17/22 09:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grit dog wrote:

Straight 6 was available thru at least '86 in the 3/4 - 1 tons. 1/2 tons base option changed to the 4.3 V6 in the 80s.


I remember seeing plenty of half tons with the I6 and later the 4.3 V6's with a 4 barrel carb which was pretty cool, but neither had the power of the 5.0.

blt2ski

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Posted: 08/17/22 10:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The 4.3 carb versions were 2bbls. approx 180hp. the TBI was 195 or so, the vortec 210'ish. That motor was designed for the pickups and Astro vans. 85-86 or so was first year, replaced the 250 I6 in the 1500. I could see someone putting a 4bl on the 4.3 and waking that motor up! the 2bbl was as slug. The TBI not too bad, the vortec a different beast yet. The 4.3 I have in my 14 is on par with the TBI/4bbl 454s Ive had over power wise.
The 292 I6 1BBL was base motor in the square body truck to about 87, then 88-90 when GM started making a DW 3500 the base motor was a 350, 454 and 6.2 diesel with options.
The 88 model year GM CK trucks, the 4.3 was base motor for the 6600 gvw 1500, 7200 6 lug 2500, and the 8600 8 lug was a 3500. 89 or 90, the 8600 2500 came out, with a 9200 3500 sw. 91 or 92 was the 10K DW versions. Also about 90 with the 8600 2500, the 4.3 was dropped in favor of the 350 base for motor. the 3500 also had a 350 base, with a 454 and 6.2 option. a year or two later, the 2500 got the 6.2/454 option. 6.5td came out in 94 with the 6.2 going away.
You could get a 292 in a 25 or 35 series van, with 3.42 gears and a munci 4 spd, those rigs got 17-20 mpg vs a 4.1 geared as noted, about 10-11 no matter what you were doing! I got 15 once playing games in neutral going down some long downhills, like chinook pass locally with my 81 reg cab. could out pull my 88 tbi/89 4bbl 454s at low speeds, but once the BB's got to 20 mph, they left the I6 behind.
Dad had a 66 1500 with a 250 three in the tree, he could get 15-18 with it. Not sure on the rear gear ratio. He sold it, next person put a 4 sp and 350 in it. Chassis had over 300K miles last I heard about. A lot of boats had the 250 in I/O configs too. Our 16' Chris-Craft, a number of others I knew too.

Marty


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mkirsch

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Posted: 08/18/22 06:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

FishOnOne wrote:

Grit dog wrote:

Straight 6 was available thru at least '86 in the 3/4 - 1 tons. 1/2 tons base option changed to the 4.3 V6 in the 80s.


I remember seeing plenty of half tons with the I6 and later the 4.3 V6's with a 4 barrel carb which was pretty cool, but neither had the power of the 5.0.


Well duh, that was in the days of "there is no replacement for displacement." Need more power, add more holes, or make the holes bigger. Turbos were for weenies. Superchargers were for those delinquent greasers who raced cars in a straight line.

Though I have a hard time believing that a GM 305 was out-pulling all those other engines, unless it was pulling a LOT less, or something was done to it to pep it up. Even today the 305 is regarded as a joke.


Putting 10-ply tires on half ton trucks since aught-four.

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