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Unread 09-03-2009, 05:15 PM   #1
mpd224
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New To Jeeps and Need Suggestions For Which Transmission

I have a buddy at work who has decided to part with his 1979 CJ5 that he rebuilt in the early 90's. The CJ5 has been sitting for the last 7 years with an unknown motor issue (possibly a spun bearing on a rod). Here is what the CJ5has. Frame looks good and had some help getting coated by engine oil when the motor went. He said when he parked the CJ5, the motor ran but sounded like a helicopter. I have a good 4 bolt Chevy 350 that I plan to transplant into the CJ5 till I can find out what is wrong with the 327.

-79 CJ5 w/ 2.5" lift
-Chevy 327 motor
-Muncie M20 4 speed transmission
-Dana 20 T Case
-Either a Dana 30 or 44 front axle
-Ford 9 Inch rear axle
-Kevlar tub with Kevlar tilt from end
-Full Autometer dash.
-Bucket seats with 4 point harnesses

I'm not sure why he put a Muncie M20 car 4 speed in it, but this is part that I don't care for. I am wanting to switch to a 4 speed truck style transmission and here is where I'm torn on which way to go. Here are the options that I am contemplating.

Option 1:
Locate an SM420 trans (not too easy to find in my area) and get a Novak adapter to mate to the Dana / Spicer 20 T case

Option 2:
Locate an SM465 trans (quite a few around for about $100-150) and get a Novak adapter to mate to the Dana / Spicer 20 T case

Option 3:
Locate a Ford T18 trans and get a Novak Adapter to mate to the 20 T case

Option 4:
Locate a T-176 and Dana 300 T case combo and get an Iron Duke bellhousing to mate up to the small block Chevy motor.

All options seem to be in the same ball park in regards to money. What do you guys think would be the best route to go? This Jeep will mainly be driven on the road with a fair amount of offroad trips, mainly to Tennessee. Nothing too extreme though. I would say it would be about 60/40 to 70/30 street to offroad driving. Thanks in advance for any help you guys could give me.

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Unread 09-03-2009, 08:12 PM   #2
scottsjeeprolet
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Option 4
The T176 is a very good trans until you put some power to it. I have broken 2 output shafts with the power of the Chevy 350. But i was being stupid and goofing off. It's also a built motor.
Now i'm running a NP435 and love it.
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Unread 09-03-2009, 09:33 PM   #3
jeepdaddy2000
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If your running a GM engine, either SM option is by far the easiest. it will also give you a super strong transmission with a granny low gear and you won't have any engine/transmission adapting issues. As far as the Muncie tranny goes, they were popular in the 60's and 70's as an alternative to the existing three speed manuals. Most were seen around the sand and mud where smooth shifting and an extra gear were desirable. While they don't have the compound first, they are plenty strong and really, unless your working rocks or other technical sections, the Muncie may work fine for you.
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Unread 09-03-2009, 10:37 PM   #4
mpd224
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The only thing that seems odd with the Muncie M20 that is in it now is that the shifter is right against the driver seat. I will have to load some pictures when I get back home (I'm at work right now). The shifter is mounted on the side of the transmission, does anyone know if it can be altered to where the shifter is more in the middle of the hump like a truck style transmission?
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Unread 09-04-2009, 02:40 AM   #5
80cj
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpd224 View Post
The only thing that seems odd with the Muncie M20 that is in it now is that the shifter is right against the driver seat. I will have to load some pictures when I get back home (I'm at work right now). The shifter is mounted on the side of the transmission, does anyone know if it can be altered to where the shifter is more in the middle of the hump like a truck style transmission?
Advance Adapters used to sell a stick with an offset for those conversions. Check with them.
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Unread 09-04-2009, 05:36 AM   #6
bleoh
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Option 2.5: SM465 with Novak adapter to D300
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Unread 09-04-2009, 06:14 AM   #7
scottsjeeprolet
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Only problem is those adapters are soo freakin expensive.
T176 cheap good trans on a budget.
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Unread 09-04-2009, 07:52 AM   #8
84cj
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I had a T-176 behind an AMC 360. No issues, and I wasn't easy on it. Now with the 5.7 install, I went with an SM465, it was given to me. Hard to pass that up. I did have to spring for the adapter for the d300.

For ME, the 176 was a better around town type trans. The extra gear between 1 and final comes in handy. With that said, the tremendously rugged feel of the 465 feels MUCH beefier than the 176. Finding the right gear is for certain speeds can be a minor issue. I'm either reving the engine a bit, or lugging it, which isn't good. The low/granny gear of the 465 comes in VERY handy.

IMO, if you are not going to flog on it and drive mostly around town, find a t-176 with a d-300 already mounted to it. Price may be better than getting an adapter. If you like to beat on it a bit, want a rugged trans that you will probably never have to take apart, do some wheeling and would like the low first, go with the 465.

Only you know your driving style and terrain.
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5.7 TBI, sm465, d-300, d30, m20.
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Unread 09-04-2009, 08:38 AM   #9
PavementPounder
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Don't let the Dana 20 get in the way here.

SM & Dana 300 or T-176 & Dana 300.
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Unread 09-05-2009, 07:19 AM   #10
mpd224
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Here are some pictures of where the shifter is located and how it looks. I found a shifter on Hurst's website that is offset and I believe that one should work. I just need one the will move it to the right and is taller. Is it safe to say that if I switch out to say the T-176/300 combo, I will have to re arrange the trans and T case mounting brackets? Thanks again for everyones help. I may stick with this Muncie trans for a while since I found a deal on a 350 crate motor that I may not be able to pass up.



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Unread 09-05-2009, 03:18 PM   #11
80cj
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I believe the offset stick that Advance Adaptes sells has about a 4 inch offset.
http://advanceadapters.com/product/2...offset%29.html
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Unread 09-05-2009, 05:35 PM   #12
mpd224
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Cool, thanks. I completely overlooked that one on their website. I think that will work out perfectly. Thanks again
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Unread 01-25-2010, 08:56 PM   #13
coloplumber
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If you decide to change trannys and want to sell the adapter let me know
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