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 Post Posted: Tue Apr 24, 2018 11:15 pm 
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Hello everybody,

I have a 1979 Malibu Classic and the old girl is pretty beat up. it sat for a few years before i got it and i need to do quite a bit to her to bring her back to her glory days.

- First thing is the rusted frame. I have heard various things about this so i was just wondering what year and model of car will be a straight match if i cant find a Malibu frame for it.

- Next is the Engine and transmission. i was wanting to drop a small block 350 in it and swap the stock auto with a manual transmission of some sort. Now i dont plan on racing it or running the #### out of it but it was my daily driver for years so im just looking for something that will add horsepower and well automatics are boring to me so i want a standard. Any advice on a motor and transmission setup that wouldn't call for much if any fabrication would be great.

- Finally the rear end. I hear people preach about a 9" Posi Rear end but like i said most of this car building is still pretty new to me so i was looking for suggestions on which type on that as well.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Hopefully with the help of all of you i can get my baby back on the road and running stronger than ever. Thank you in advance.


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 Post Posted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 6:51 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 05, 2004 10:28 am
Posts: 1737
Location: Canton Mi.
Lots of info on frames on the forum, just do a search. SBC will be an economical choice - buy or build to your needs. A manual trans will be your choice also and since your not pushing HP a Saginaw would be a good choice. Same with the rear end, the 7.5 will handle your needs with no problems. Now if you have any future plans of making HP - north of 350 - now would be the time of getting better parts. What ever you build make sure your combo complements it self - heads, cam, intake, carb, exh, coverter(if auto) and rear end. Everything should be a bolt-in.


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 Post Posted: Wed Apr 25, 2018 11:16 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:30 pm
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Thanks man I appreciate your input.

I believe that the SBC is what I’ll go with. Maybe hit it with a new carb, intake and cam. I’m sure at the end of the day being able to achieve my goal won’t be to difficult.

I’ve heard some good things about Saginaws as well. I know some people like them some people don’t so I’ll just have to see what I think myself.


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 Post Posted: Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:56 pm 
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MalibuRacing Junkie
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Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 7:26 am
Posts: 15783
Location: North Jersey
TuckAnd20 wrote:
Thanks man I appreciate your input.

I believe that the SBC is what I’ll go with. Maybe hit it with a new carb, intake and cam. I’m sure at the end of the day being able to achieve my goal won’t be to difficult.

I’ve heard some good things about Saginaws as well. I know some people like them some people don’t so I’ll just have to see what I think myself.


Don't get a Saginaw. For almost the same money you can get a BW T10 or, for a little more money, a Muncie which is even better yet. I drive stick VERY well and still managed to have a very well built Saginaw blow up behind a very mild 305. The Muncie M21 I have survived behind my LS6 454 in a 69 Chevelle and was not even gone through when I got it.

Tommy

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20k mile '80 Malibu, currently undergoing long term (aka no money) factory style install LS6 454, Cowl Induction, Legend LGT 700 5 speed. Full Global West suspension, 17" N90 wheels, 12" front/11" rear disc brakes, 9" 3.70 Auburn Pro posi.

"The older I get, the faster I was"


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 Post Posted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 8:53 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2003 11:15 pm
Posts: 14747
Location: Catalina, AZ
I'm at the other end, I have a stock Saginaw (the "weak" one too, 3.50:1 1st gear ratio set), and a set of 2.29s. I have a relatively 'mild' 350 with Vortecs and a Comp cam (224/230 @ .050), and so far the trans/rear have been ok, despite the engine making around 375hp. I've picked up a WC T5 to build and an 8.5" B-Body rear to eventually put in mine.

Stock T5s aren't known for strength, but they are overdrive and there are some gear sets out there to increase their strength (will cost a bit). You also have the option to go with a TKO500/600 (performance aftermarket 5-speeds, not cheap but they've been around a while now), and T56 (6-speed used in a whole bunch of RWD applications) that is also pretty strong, but many used variants may have whatever wear problems that come with the T56, so that's something to keep in mind (people seem to think theirs are worth gold and they haven't even been rebuilt). Basically with a mild to even healthy (up around 450hp) engine the TKOs and T56 should hold up fine in new/rebuilt condition.

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'92 Sierra - EBL/TBI-fed Vortec 383/700R4/3.08
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'78 Malibu - Vortec 350/4-speed (for now)


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