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Discussion Starter #1
so i jusr picked up a 75 wit 350 end th350 trans and 3.08 rear. im thinking i want to get a vintage rv to go with. any idea what was includes in a tow package? Any idea where i can get a hitch? any idea where ro find the tow capacity? thanks in advance.

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On a 40+yo car I wouldn't consider heavy towing without a full suspension rebuild including bushings. Sloppy worn out bushings would have a lot of potential to induce dangerous sway.

I have no idea about what it was rated for back in the day but I do know the 90s cars which were chassis wise VERY similar just shortened up a bit had a 5000lbs rating if ordered with mechanical rather than electric fans which you already have. The 94-96 Fleetwood which was a little longer than the Caprice/Impala/Roadmaster could even be had with 3.42 gears and mechanical fan with a 7000lbs tow rating so I suspect with full suspension rebuild and swaybars a 1975 model could handle that, but again at that age I would replace every bushing, spring and use GOOD shocks like Bilstein before even trying a 3500lbs popup.

This is not meant to discourage towing with a car, if I had unlimited time and adequate funds I think rebuilding an old station wagon and big Airstream would be cool, and I feel confident in my ability to modify it to be able to handle more than anything GM ever rated one for.

I just think it very important to consider that 40yo bushings and springs are not going to be up to the task of the original rated max towing load.

Far as finding the published number bet you can find a owners manual download somewhere as a .PDF and search that.
 

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so i jusr picked up a 75 wit 350 end th350 trans and 3.08 rear. im thinking i want to get a vintage rv to go with. any idea what was includes in a tow package? Any idea where i can get a hitch? any idea where or find the tow capacity? thanks in advance.
My dad pulled his boat with a 73 Catalina, which had pretty much the same underpinnings as your 75, but with the 400 motor. Not sure what tranny was in it. The boat/motor/trailer was around 1500-2000 pounds, fully loaded.

I don't think there were any "tow package" type features added to the car, other than air shocks in the rear. No extra transmission cooler, for example. Just an aftermarket trailer hitch.

I looked on the Curt website, but they don't have anything for a 75 Chevy car, just trucks.

My next idea would be to check with U-haul and see what hitches they might have. Don't just visit the website, tho - go to a store and talk to the folks installing them. See what guidance they might be able to provide. Do the same with Hilti, if you have one in your area. I'd like to think, if there's not a bolt-on hitch available for your car, that it shouldn't be a herculean task to mod one to fit.

Back in the day, you'd see these gawdawful bumper hitches being used. If those things could be made to work, it shouldn't require much fabrication to adapt an existing, off-the-shelf hitch to the task.

HTH.

Doug

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Discussion Starter #4
so definitely need to srart with ahocks ans front suspension im debating whether to go rear air shocks or shocks with the progressive coil spring. im just concerned the spring shocks will make a stiff ride unloaded.

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AirLift bags could help the rear, plumb them separate, these are cheap and WAY better than air shocks. Shocks don't have to be hard crap like the Ranchos people put on trucks Bilsteins are nice, little more sporty than stock mush but not punishing, bet it is even the same part number I have on the back of my 1996 Caprice and a friend has on the back of his 1967 Chevelle.
 

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Petrol (gasoline) engine with displacement: 5733 cm3 / 349.8 cui, advertised power: 155 hp ( SAE net ), torque: 250 lb-ft
1975 was the beginning of the dark days of no power. Even if the frame and suspension is up to the task the 350 is pretty anemic.
The L36 3.8 has
200 Horsepower and 225 lb-ft Torque. I think you're going to need a bigger engine.

 

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1975 was the beginning of the dark days of no power. Even if the frame and suspension is up to the task the 350 is pretty anemic.
I had the dark days beginning in 73 :) Regardless, the switch to unleaded left us with lots of 5+ liter motors which made a 1/2 horse per cube or less. My 74 302 was spec'd at 140 HP, I think :(

That said, the one good thing about V8's, even the anemic ones from the 70's, is that they still make a little low end torque, which helps when pulling a trailer. But, no doubt, it takes a while to get up to highway speed.

Doug

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I had the dark days beginning in 73 :) Regardless, the switch to unleaded left us with lots of 5+ liter motors which made a 1/2 horse per cube or less. My 74 302 was spec'd at 140 HP, I think :(

That said, the one good thing about V8's, even the anemic ones from the 70's, is that they still make a little low end torque, which helps when pulling a trailer. But, no doubt, it takes a while to get up to highway speed.

Doug

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Being a bit of a Pontiac fan boy, I think of the '74 T/A 455SD 290hp (net) at 4,000 RPM and 390-lbs.ft. of torque at 3,200 RPM. But definitely agree getting on the highway with ~8000 lbs GCVW and 155 HP would take some planning.
 

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The more modern engines make the torque and HP numbers at higher rpm so not a great comparison, even the V8s are high strung compared to yesteryear. Then again the old 3 speed trannies have crap first gears.

A TH400 has a 2.48 first, the 6L80E has a 4.02
 
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