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Author Topic: Motorhome 440  (Read 3407 times)

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Offline mopar1

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Motorhome 440
« on: March 11, 2008, 04:41:52 PM »
Is there anything special about a 440 from a 73 motorhome? I think it has a steel crankshaft and I heard 6 pac rods.
How much HP and torque also?
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Offline ramitupurs84

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2008, 07:57:57 PM »
Personally I was told thats where you get the good ones out of. Check the 4wheel and drive magazine they did a build up on a 440 last month or previous to that on one out of a motorhome I think.

Offline v737d

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #2 on: March 11, 2008, 09:23:27 PM »
Six Pack rods are not what the hype/myth reports them to be.

They are heavier (slower revving) overkill rods that MOPAR installed in six pack motors.  Stock or new replacement MOPAR rods are well suited for whatever application you have.

The 440 should have good parts, but probably low compression pistons.  Also the "thin casting" myth was also busted by MOPAR ACTION magazine a few issues back.  They weighed and tested all vintages of BB and RB engines and found little to nothing to supports one year to the next.  they found heavy and thin cylinder walls throughout the years as well as heavy to light blocks over the production run too.

Have the block heads and crank checked at a shop that knows MOPARS, don't (for the love of pete) take it somewhere that does ford and chevy and says oh yeah we can do a 440.  they will ruin it.  Ask your state chapter board for reccomendations and have fun.

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Offline Dork

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #3 on: March 11, 2008, 10:52:15 PM »
could have the "industrial" heads that are dang near impossible (I hear) to find replacement exhaust manifolds or headers for, and a high mount water pump that's not normal either.
As long as they're in good shape or plan on being replaced anyways, no biggie.

A co-worker of mine just picked up a near free motorhome that the guy claimed had a 318.
Turns out to be a 413.  Cool.  He hasn't spent enough time with the motorhome yet to decide if he's going to get it back on the road or part it out, but it does start and run.
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Offline mopar1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2008, 09:06:18 AM »
Anybody have any HP and torque figures for this engine?
This engine would  be used for towing so heavy duty was what I am after. Since it was for a big motorhome I would guess that it is already set up for towing. It only has 20,000 miles on it so I would just re-seal it and drop it in.
could have the "industrial" heads that are dang near impossible (I hear) to find replacement exhaust manifolds or headers for, and a high mount water pump that's not normal either.

He took the cast iron intake off of it and used it to lift another 440 in a car. I guess that it fit?

The 440 should have good parts, but probably low compression pistons. Also the "thin casting" myth was also busted by MOPAR ACTION magazine a few issues back. They weighed and tested all vintages of BB and RB engines and found little to nothing to supports one year to the next. they found heavy and thin cylinder walls throughout the years as well as heavy to light blocks over the production run too.

That was probably due to core shift. My 76 440 has thin cylinder walls. The engine pad numbers are 440 - E - HP
The E stands for cast crank and the HP I do not know for sure. I was told that maybe it came out of a police car.
The Mopar performance engine book says not to bore it more than .030. That would be all that was needed to make the block useable anyway. If I do not buy the motorhome 440, I am thinking about a 440 source 500CID stroker kit. Plus due to high gasoline prices I will convert it over to propane. So I will need high compression ratio for that.
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Offline v737d

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2008, 02:45:13 PM »
If it is a '73 then think low HP maybe 200+ but well under 300 lots and lots of torque though.  Motorhome and station wagon is the reason the 440 was built in the first place it is a torque monster not a high rpm high hp motor.  Big numbers are feasable especially with a 500+ cu. in. stroker kit.  You can get an easy 550hp and 600ft lbs of torgue (flywheel numbers) without even trying hard.

"www.hughsengines.com"  has great articles and dyno pulls for the 440.

If you are not going to go the big HP route then save your $$$ and keep whatever crank it has, steel (forged) or cast will be more than capable. 

Stock iron heads make good hp see if you can get the casting number off of them.  Some one on this site should be able to tell you if they are usable.    New pistons will be needed for your high comp request as the '73 is likely to have less than 9-1 CR. 

Cheers

Chris
87 RC, 318, auto, 2WD, dual exh, hooker header, full elec FBO ignition, 31's on '03 Ram 17" rims, Borgeson steering

88 RC 318 auto, 2wd stock except for 31 BFG AT on 17"s

'76 RC 440 727 NP203 33"

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Offline cragdweller

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2008, 07:44:03 PM »
What kind of motorhome is it?  The van body type or the big box type?  the industrial motors were only found in the big motorhomes.  The intakes will swap between an indutrial engine and a regular automotive/light truck engine, so that will not tell you anything.  You need to look at the motor.  If the water pump housing has passages that lead directly to the front of the heads, its the indutrial style motor.

The Mopar Performance book has several myths, one of which is the thin wall casting.  As said above, a 76-78 block might have thicker cylinder walls than a 70 block.  And the strongest 440 blocks were cast from 75 on.  These are the "630" blocks which have more material around the main webs than earlier 440s.

The 73 motorhome engine you're thinking about would be worth buying at a decent price just for the block and steel crank alone...
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Offline chrysler300le

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2008, 10:12:18 PM »
That Mopar Action article on the block thickness was about 3-5 years ago, not a few issues back.  Yes Mopar Performance has led people down the wrong path for many years.  The thin wall stuff is all false for the most part or at least for the big blocks.  MA also found that the later blocks were actually thicker but also softer( had less nickel).  I think MP didnt' want to admit they started using less nickel so they just said they were thinner instead.
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Offline mopar1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2008, 09:08:15 AM »
What kind of motorhome is it?  The van body type or the big box type?  the industrial motors were only found in the big motorhomes. 

I think it came out of the big box type.
Quote
The Mopar Performance book has several myths, one of which is the thin wall casting.  As said above, a 76-78 block might have thicker cylinder walls than a 70 block.  And the strongest 440 blocks were cast from 75 on.  These are the "630" blocks which have more material around the main webs than earlier 440s.

I never knew that
Quote
.
The 73 motorhome engine you're thinking about would be worth buying at a decent price just for the block and steel crank alone...
The guy that has it may still use it himself. But I have first choice to buy it if he does not.

 
That Mopar Action article on the block thickness was about 3-5 years ago, not a few issues back. Yes Mopar Performance has led people down the wrong path for many years. The thin wall stuff is all false for the most part or at least for the big blocks. MA also found that the later blocks were actually thicker but also softer( had less nickel). I think MP didnt' want to admit they started using less nickel so they just said they were thinner instead.

This is all new news to me. So is a softer block still less desireable than an older block?
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Offline farfromhome63

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2008, 12:03:16 AM »
I have a 440 motorhome engine and its in my 72 w200 and all i did was put headers and a holley 750 vac secondaries on it after i put new seals in the engine only 30000 mi. that thing has more tq than i know what to do with, my truck will smoke the tires into 2nd with the service bed on, since its off now its kinda overkill off road, who cares its a 440. by the way my motor is a 78 out of an executive 33ft and it has six pack rods according to the castings, also the heads are 452s its a great motor.

Offline mopar1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2008, 12:28:59 AM »
I am glad to hear it. Thank you for the info.
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Offline cragdweller

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2008, 03:41:41 PM »
The later blocks are only a little softer and would be fine for a street of 4x4 motor.  Read the article:

http://www.arengineering.com/articles/articleframe.html

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Offline mopar1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #12 on: March 16, 2008, 01:37:14 AM »
That was a very informative article. The author really likes the 400/451 stroker engine combo.
If I use my 440 it will be stroked to 512 CID most likely.
But then I think "how will I be able to afford to feed that thing?"
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Offline cragdweller

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2008, 08:26:13 PM »
Whoops, I thought the link was for another article,  The one I was trying to post is:


http://www.arengineering.com/articles/sonicbig.html
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Offline mopar1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2008, 09:22:11 AM »
Yeah, I found that article too. They were all interesting.
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Offline DODGEN1

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2008, 02:36:55 AM »
you know the heads and block are drilled for more cooling around the spark plugs
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Offline Gohot

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #16 on: February 4, 2011, 04:47:39 PM »
I just got offered a 440 with the 727 all complete with accs. for '$500 or best.... with around 35K on it.
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Offline 85 Royal SE Prospector

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #17 on: February 4, 2011, 06:01:56 PM »
I just got offered a 440 with the 727 all complete with accs. for '$500 or best.... with around 35K on it.
From a car- go for it. From a motorhome, go cheaper if possible.
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Offline Gohot

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #18 on: February 5, 2011, 10:25:55 AM »
As I said earlier, I have an offer for a 440/727 w/accs. for 5 bills and it's only clocked 20,000 miles. In the course of reading and searching for tidbits and things I would encounter, one of the first things that drew my attention was an article online by a well known monthly mag where they were talking benefits and drawbacks. The first I noticed was that most people thought the 440 was a thinwall block only good for  twenty thousandths overbore, and the blocks were thin. It turns out that there was only a slight difference in different year modles, but that they were not wall thinness related, and all the motors were sufficietly thick of ALL the 440 variety. They noted some differences in the motorhome application motors which were tuned for torque of course. The rockwell metal hardness was the next issue that caught my attention. A test where a steel ball is pressed into the block metal and the indentation is measured and the psi to get the pressure to cause the metal to 'dent' basically. That was true that the nickle content was lessened in the late 70' or 80's (don't remember the year) but those were the real areas of distinction. Fatter rods, cast crank, rv lift cam, and probably minimal valve size. Even with these things in view, you could get 916 heads, h beam rods, some nice springs and valves and lumpy cam and build a king kong motor for the Ramcharger. OR, go completly stock.....ish and only fiddel with the carburation and distributor and have a superfine street driving, towing motor.  The biggest no no to come across on a 440 for a donor, is one with the industrial mounting of accessories.

So you see....... decissions, decessions..... sould I or not? Well I only drive around 1 or 2 hundred miles a month max anyway.... so the gas thing isn't too hard to deal with, and I do have a boat I pull, a 17" bowrider in/out. so...?   I believe I'm going to try to get this motor and trans, and with 20K, it ought to both be clean.... and also have gobs of usable shelf life left, like over 100+K more trouble free. Where only buying gas and insurance is involved, its not bad, considering those with big fuel costs, monthly payments and having to carry full coverage.......... mine's still way cheaper....and look at the 'Fun' factor. :) :)

Oh I uh forgot to add... this is a two wheel drive Ramcharger Prospector. I'll probably need an 8 3/4 rear soon, with tall gears, like 290's or something.. :)

And a limited slip or posi..
And traction bars
And 10-12" meats
I''m sure theres another 'And' in there somewhere......hmmmm..  aw who am I kidding, it's only a big block motor home motor.
« Last Edit: February 5, 2011, 10:40:32 AM by Gohot »
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Offline Gohot

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #19 on: February 5, 2011, 10:28:01 AM »
PS 85Royale..... I will follow your advice and haggel down some if possible.
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Offline 85 Royal SE Prospector

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #20 on: February 5, 2011, 03:03:46 PM »
You'd think, but dang those motor homes can abuse an engine. Don't change the oil a while, overrev it a few times, give it one good time of over heating and it is time for a rebuild. With those garbage pistons and heads that should be replace anyway for a car or light truck that isn't a big deal.

A motor home 440 is a decent motor to rebuild, not as decent of a motor to just buy, drop in, and run.

Yeah, you could do it stock or run 915s or 516s on it. I'd make sure to tear it apart if you plan to use it. Better to replace things that shouldn't be wrong early than more things that shouldn't be wrong later.
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Offline kyot

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #21 on: February 5, 2011, 07:39:05 PM »
Both of my 440's are from motorhomes. I like the high mounting position for the alternater.

The 440 in my shortbox is far from stock, very massaged heads and has been running 60 over pistons for 7 years now. I run it with a 4 core rad and a stock clutch fan.
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Offline Gohot

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #22 on: February 6, 2011, 08:00:56 AM »
You bring up some good arguments about care given one of these motors. I'd bet 3/4 of the people who own one probably keep on on the oil and such, and it's a 50/50 chance in the overheating area. The over-reving..... I'd think that with an RV cam it would be all done at 5,000 rpm, mabe 4,800 . So, to my way of thinking, thats still under stress mode. I will however give it a good look-over, and if all looks good, just run it. And in the meantime start aquiring rebuild stuff in earnest or as money allows. Honestly, I dont plan on much more than a stockish motor, other than a car/truck cam. and probably headers. You know, the usual chrome thing here and there.
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Offline mopars 4 life

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Re: Motorhome 440
« Reply #23 on: February 6, 2011, 08:51:38 AM »
we bought a whole complete camper, just for the 440, and when we got to diggin around in it we found a stack of receipts on all the stuff the dude had repaired over his journeys.....stuff like that helps ya know how well it was taken care of so look around if the engine is still in the camper and the dude doesn't care.
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