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Username Post: 454, 5 spd mpg question        (Topic#108578)
chairmnofthboard 
Senior Member
Posts: 433

Loc: So Cal
Reg: 05-22-03
08-03-05 07:41 AM - Post#753229    

Whats up everyone, I have a mpg question, I found a 94 3500 gmc crew cab non dually for a good price, it's manual trans like I wanted, and my question is what kind of fuel mileage should I expect from this beast?

my other questions are:
are the 5 spd's any good?
are the 454 any good?
do the 5 spds get better mileage in the big trucks over auto?

I'm looking to get a heavier duty truck, but not sure if i want to cough up the money for a diesel.

tell me what you think

Xavier
1964 Impala 2dr

01 Chevy 3500 drw, duramax, allison, banks exhaust


 
Anonymous 

Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 10:54 AM - Post#753230    
    In response to chairmnofthboard

You should find out exactly what 5 speed is in the truck,Getrag or NV4500, the NV4500 is a better transmmission than the Getrag.

 
alfalfa6945 
Member
Posts: 39

Reg: 08-12-04
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 02:31 PM - Post#753231    
    In response to chairmnofthboard

Quote:

Whats up everyone, I have a mpg question, I found a 94 3500 gmc crew cab non dually for a good price, it's manual trans like I wanted, and my question is what kind of fuel mileage should I expect from this beast?




I'm getting 10-11 mpg in my '95 dually crewcab (empty, running air conditioning fulltime, tires at 65 pounds) Mileage drops to about 7-8 mpg towing heavy.

Quote:

my other questions are:
are the 5 spd's any good?




As was said previously, the nv4500 is about as solid a transmission as has ever been made for these vehicles and if the truck you are looking at has one, all the better.

Quote:

are the 454 any good?




Like all tbi motors, you can reach some pretty impressive odometer readings with even just minimal care.
I personally think the tbi 454 is underpowered...

Quote:

do the 5 spds get better mileage in the big trucks over auto?




When you're dealing with numbers from 7-11 mpg, I doubt you'd notice a difference between auto and manual (all other things being equal).
You get the manual tranny if you _use_ your truck, you get the automatic if you just _drive_ your truck.

Quote:

I'm looking to get a heavier duty truck, but not sure if i want to cough up the money for a diesel.




Diesel is funny. The price they charge you for the diesel option on a new truck far outways the benefit. Do some fancy calculator work and see how many _hundreds of thousands_ of miles you'd have to put on that truck to see a benefit from the purchase.
Likewise for the used diesel, but perhaps more so. No warranty on a '94 diesel Not sure about you, but who wants to deal with a cavitation issue shortly (or anytime)after purchase of said used diesel?

Quote:

tell me what you think




You asked for it

 
chairmnofthboard 
Senior Member
Posts: 433

Loc: So Cal
Reg: 05-22-03
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 03:13 PM - Post#753232    
    In response to alfalfa6945

Good points.

How do I know what trans it has?

10-11 ouch, I thought my 13-16 was bad, how do you guys with those 454's do it!

I understand your point on the diesel option cost, It's about $6000 more fore the diesel option, but you do have more torque, and the ability to raise those numbers farely easy.

You think the 454 tbi is underpowered?

I'm looking to get something that can handle heavy loads better than my 92 5.7 Z71 auto, it's a dog going up hills with any load.

You think that big block is a big step in the right dirrection or just a lil over what i already got?

thanks

Xavier
1964 Impala 2dr

01 Chevy 3500 drw, duramax, allison, banks exhaust


 
Anonymous 

Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 05:14 PM - Post#753233    
    In response to chairmnofthboard

If you have a cooperative service dept. they can probably tell you from the vin, what tranny it was built with. My NV4500 is geared like the old "granny gear" 4 speeds, first is pretty low, low enough you pull out normally in second. I don't think the getrags are geared that way, if it doesn't have the creeper first gear, it's not the NV4500.

 
alfalfa6945 
Member
Posts: 39

Reg: 08-12-04
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 06:01 PM - Post#753234    
    In response to chairmnofthboard

Quote:

How do I know what trans it has?




Maybe the easiest way to tell would be to see if the bellhouse is part of the transmission, if it's not, it's the 4500 (transman, Dave or anyone correct me if I am wrong, I think the 5lm60 bellhouse is built into the case, whereas I know the 4500 has a bolt on bellhouse)

Quote:

10-11 ouch, I thought my 13-16 was bad, how do you guys with those 454's do it!




Depends on what you need it for. The 3500 dually is a tough truck. I could never replace it with
a halfton, they're too weak. But with that extra steel comes extra weight comes worse fuel mileage.

I borrowed an '05 Ford F250HD for a day, was amazed that even while running empty the thing might have got 12 mpg (not lying, this thing was a pig...)


Quote:

I understand your point on the diesel option cost, It's about $6000 more fore the diesel option, but you do have more torque, and the ability to raise those numbers farely easy.




If you can justify the money for the extra torque, the diesel is cool. But there is always a gas option that competes with it. Ford/Dodge have their v10's and GM has the 8.1. Around here, the diesels are being replaced with those same gas options in work vehicles. Cheaper to buy, cheaper to maintain, cheaper to repair.

Quote:

You think the 454 tbi is underpowered?




When I'm towing, the 454 tbi IS underpowered, no question. One of the trailers I tow is a 16 foot enclosed cargo trailer. With tools and material, the whole setup weighs about 6000 pounds (dual axle) I've towed it with a variety of different vehicles ('92 6.2 diesel non-turbo 1500, '94 5.7 Z71 1500, '95 7.4 3500, '88 Ford 5.8 F150, '96 318 Jeep Grand Cherokee LTD) What towed the load the best? The 318 Jeep, it literally kicked the crap out of all the other vehicles I mentioned.

Quote:

I'm looking to get something that can handle heavy loads better than my 92 5.7 Z71 auto, it's a dog going up hills with any load.
You think that big block is a big step in the right dirrection or just a lil over what i already got?




My dually does tow marginally better than my '94 Z71, and definately better in the hills. But the dually has 4.10 gears, the Z71 has 3.70 gears. Unless you plan on changing a few things in the engine (camshaft would be a good place to start, heads if you can justify it, whipple charger if you're serious) you probably will not be all that impressed (you'll just be getting worse gas mileage)
Other people's mileage may vary, but I'm like you, I get bent when I start slowing down too much in the hills. At 7-8 mpg towing, I had better not be slowing down until I hit the brakes.

The whipple supercharger is the next part I'm buying for this truck. We'll see if that doesn't cure the "underpower".

 
OldSub 
Senior Member
Posts: 317

Loc: Near Seattle
Reg: 09-01-04
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-03-05 06:17 PM - Post#753235    
    In response to alfalfa6945

I'm new in this part of the forum. I was looking for ideas to improve the mileage on my K3500 454/t400. I got 6 mpg pulling a loaded trailer 70+ this past weekend, and decided it was time to think about getting better.

Empty it is much better.

I would agree that loaded it does seem to lack power, but only if comparing it to running empty. Before I got this truck I used a 350 powered half-ton for towing, the 454 will run circles around the 350.

Of course the 350 delivered more than twice the miles on each gallon of gas.
Steve@OldSub.com
OldSub.com . MaxwellGarage.com . OldGasTowRigs.com


 
57_sedan_delivery 
Old as Dirt Member
Posts: 6720

Loc: Hog Valley, Fla.
Reg: 02-19-01
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-04-05 03:15 AM - Post#753236    
    In response to chairmnofthboard

I had a '98 K3500 SRW with the 454/5spd NV4500 4.10 gears and it would get 15 mpg at 70 mph on the freeway unloaded, dropped a little in town and if towing. I moved across country with this truck pulling a flatbed trailer loaded with all my garage and old car stuff so it was really loaded and still did a good job. Would a diesel do a better job? Maybe but it would have to be one of the modern ones with better power, however the diesel will get better mileage with all things being equal.
Mike W.

Founding father Desert Classic Chevys in Phoenix, Az.

1957 sedan delivery 454 TH400
1956 windowed sedan delivery US Dept of Ag car
1956 Chevy 3100 US Navy pickup
1959 rare GMC 100 fleet option 100 pickup


 
chairmnofthboard 
Senior Member
Posts: 433

Loc: So Cal
Reg: 05-22-03
Re: 454, 5 spd mpg question
08-04-05 06:46 PM - Post#753237    
    In response to 57_sedan_delivery

sounds like im going to have to keep the 350 until i get either a newer big block or newer diesel.

it's ok, i've grown attached to my gmc, so if i get another truck now i'll have to sell my gmc, so i'll wait a bit and maybe i'll get to keep my gmc and get a newer truck.

Thanks guys
1964 Impala 2dr

01 Chevy 3500 drw, duramax, allison, banks exhaust


 
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