• Live! Chevy Performance Engine Swap: Big Green Chevy K10 Truck Gets New Power! [Video]


    Big Green: Chevy Performance Engine swap (ZZ6)

    TFLtruck purchased this 1985 Chevy K10 truck several months ago. We named it “Big Green“, and the entire team fell in love with it. The truck looks mean with its suspension lift and Mickey Thompson tires. On the other hand, this truck is slow and quiet. The original 305 cu-in V8 and a tiny exhaust system, meant for taking the truck hunting, do not match the bold appearance. What are we to do? How about a Chevy Performance ZZ6 350 cu-in V8 engine swap!

    We purchased the truck for $5,000 and performance minor maintenance. Now, it’s time to more than double the power! We were fortunate to get this ZZ6 turn key engine package from Chevrolet, in support of our Big Green project. The carbureted ZZ6 is rated at 405 hp @ 5,600 rpm and 406 lb-ft of torque @ 4,600 rpm. This is a far cry from the 160 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque that the original engine produced.

    (Tommy Mica)

    Naturally, the engine swap is just the beginning. We decided to keep the original 4-speed manual transmission. We will be going through the rest of the driveline to check the condition and possible upgrade the components to handle the additional power. We will be working on the brakes and all other components to make the truck a great daily driver, and an awesome off-road machine.

    Get every painful detail of the engine swap (day 1) from this recording of a live video feed.  This video is more than 2 hours 15 minutes long. We actually get the new ZZ6 engine bolted in place at the end of this video.


    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.

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    16 thoughts on “Live! Chevy Performance Engine Swap: Big Green Chevy K10 Truck Gets New Power! [Video]

    1. Andre. Glad to to see the engine swap is going forward. On a side note, Never been to Colorado, how far is the shop from Denver? Wife has a work conference in Denver in July and didn’t know how far you guys are away from Denver. I was thinking about stopping by and picking up some memorabilia if y’all are not too far away. Love the videos and the work everyone does. I’ll just order some shirts online if the distance is too far. Again,Thanks for the job you and the guys do.

    2. Congrats on the new engine guys. That engine will surely wake up that old truck. I have to admit I did not watch the whole 2 hour video but make sure the radiator is up to the task of the new found HP. I would hate for something to happen to that shiny new GM crate engine. Keep up the good work gentleman.

      1. I watched the whole thing, and I was thinking the same thing. HP produces heat, its going to run warmer and probably needs an upgraded radiator.

    3. Leave the box in the bed too. I love mine on my work truck. Keep all the tools and stuff I need in there. It is very useful especially since you have a single cab.

    4. I have 2000 Chevy 2500hd 6.0 and thinking of an engine swap in the future. Can’t wait to see how this one works out. After owing newer trucks, I’m staring to think older is better. Just like women, Better for the long haul and easier to work with. Treat them right and they’ll know how to keep you happy. Just saying!!!!

      1. Yeah you could tell in the video that Roman was thinking “Andre stay away from the motor, just hold the camera”. Meanwhile Andre was like “hey bolt that doo-hickey on that thing-a-majig.

    5. Doing an engine rebuild or replace always seems to run into issues. Nothing new here. By the end of the day the parts store guys no your name your wife’s name your kid’s name and pets name. Just on how many trips you gone there. Lol

    6. looks like you’re having fun…Is there such a thing as too much fun? You will surely find out by the end of the day. I think that pulling the old engine and installing a new one in one day is ambitious to put it mildly. Usually, you have to figure out how long it will take and how much it will cost and then double both figures. Who would have thought you might need a clutch fork?

    7. Hey guys,that single plane intake is made for racing,(street or strip). You might want to consider a dual plane intake.Especially when running the truck off road.Single plane intakes aren’t too good on the street in a 4×4 truck. Also,the clutch throw out bearing arm can be found at rockauto.

      1. Ditto, 4500 rpm torque peak is going to make for a dog when towing. May have to gear lower even with the extra power.

    8. Hey Tommy
      Since your not suppose to tow with a new motor until it has at least 500 miles on it. I guess your just going to have to take the truck for some slower off road rock crawling for a few weeks. Have fun and Don’t forget your suppose to vary your speeds during “break in”. You know what I mean?

    9. I watched the full 2 hour live video you all had posted, would have been neat on my part if i were able to catch it in real time. Looks like you all are having fun, and learning as you go with some assistance, who seems like a great guy as well! I also watched the produced video of the Engine Unboxing, that too was nice work. I look forward to the rest of the install!

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