Engine Assembly and Transmissions: Quality Components and Designs for Your Vehicle

Jun 17, 2020 
by Nick Evangelist

An engine assembly is the term used to describe the complete mechanical components that make up the engine itself and its associated systems. These associated systems are what control the engine in order to keep it running and doing its job.

Assembly Options

When in need of a new assembly, you’re generally presented with two possible options: short block and long block. Short block assemblies are the cheaper option - and there's good reason for this. While they include the essential internal parts of an engine assembly like pistons, rods, and the crankshaft, they do not include all necessary associated systems. By contrast, long block engines are comprised of all the components found within a short block assembly, in addition to more. Long block assemblies also include cylinder heads, timing covers, valve covers, and the oil pan. Some engines may also require new fluids, new gaskets, and new seals at the time of assembly.

Items which are more indirectly associated with the engine itself are not necessarily included in an assembly. This means you'll need to specify if you require these optional extras. These include things like: 

  • Turbochargers
  • Ignitions
  • Manifolds
  • Electronics
  • Starter
  • Fuel delivery systems
  • Air conditioning (AC) compressor
  • Alternator
  • Engine wire harness
  • Brackets
  • Mounts 

Note that some engine assemblies will include some of these specifications automatically, so it's important to clarify this when ordering.

Should I choose a short block or long block?

This question has both a simple and complicated answer. If all components of your existing assembly need replacing, then logically you should choose the long block. While the more expensive option, it comes with far more pieces that would likely result in spending even more money if you were to obtain these individually. In addition, if you opt for a short block with the aim of sourcing the missing parts elsewhere, you should ensure that all pieces are not only compatible, but that you have complete faith in your ability to install these additional components correctly.

When all is said and done, you’re probably better off going with the long block assembly. This option ensures that the pieces have been installed professionally, are designed specifically to work together with one another, and will all share the same replacement date. Choosing a short block and adding other pieces later may complicate the situation since you won’t be certain of the quality and functionality of these extra parts. So in the end, long block offers you far greater peace of mind and security as compared to a short block.

What is a transmission?

A transmission is the mechanism of a vehicle that transmits power from the engine through the drive shaft and to the live axle. There are four types of transmissions in use today: 

  • Manual
  • Automatic
  • Continuously variable (CVT)
  • Semi-automatic

Manual transmissions, as the name suggests, require the driver to physically manipulate each gear change required. This is achieved by the driver depressing a clutch pedal and moving the gear stick into the desired gear. The manual used to dominate the car industry but has now been staggeringly overtaken in popularity by the automatic.

As the name suggests, automatic transmissions do not require the driver to change gears themselves. The vehicle is able to measure the rotational energy of the engine by way of a torque converter sending this information to the onboard computer. This computer then makes the necessary gear changes.

Continuously variable transmissions (CVTs) do not use gears. They rely entirely on the car’s computer to manipulate a series of belts and pulleys to create what are deemed optimal driving ratios.

And finally, a semi-automatic transmission (also known as dual-clutch transmission), uses gears like the first two options but is able to be switched between the two shifting styles. When in manual mode, gear shifts are achieved by the driver manipulating paddles on the steering wheel. The dual-clutch mechanism has two separate clutches for odd and even gears, which gives this typeof transmission its name.

When purchasing a new transmission, it’s important to remember what parts come as standard. Generally, you will get the transmission case, torque converter, and internal shift levers. Extras such as linkages and cables, transfer case, flywheel, or clutch are unlikely to be included.

Which transmission type is right for me?

Because every driver is different, you need to consider your own needs and personal circumstances when asking yourself this question. Manual transmissions are more involved to use but are simple, easy, and cheap to fix if something goes wrong.

Likewise, CVTs are almost as cost-efficient to maintain as manuals and offer greater fuel efficiency. Another strong benefit to CVTs is viewed as its biggest drawback by some - the smooth driving experience that comes with no gears being shifted. While some prefer this feeling, others may feel it takes away from the experience of driving a car.  

The semi-automatic or dual-clutch transmissions allow for the fastest gear changes but are rare and the most expensive to purchase, generally being reserved for race cars and very high-end sports cars. They also hold the distinction of being the most expensive to repair when something goes wrong, owing to the enormous complexity of the system.

How long will the process take?

The first thing you need to know is that this is far more than just a process - it’s a journey. And taking this journey with us will lead you to purchasing the best possible option available nationwide for your engine assembly and / or transmission.

Your journey usually begins by calling our toll-free number at (800) 523-3388 and speaking with one of our friendly, helpful staff members. You can also submit a request for a quote online here.

After answering some initial questions, you’ll be provided an estimate of what your needs are likely to cost. But if you have come directly to this page, you’ve already made a wise decision as to how to start your journey with us. Because this page shows you only the very best products we currently have available. By clicking on this particular page, you are someone who needs the best. The gold standard in engine assemblies and / or transmissions. And that’s exactly what we can offer you here. The actual construction process of the engine assembly and / or transmission varies, depending on your specifications. But, once completed, shipping takes approximately four to six business days.

Why choose Orthodox Auto?

By choosing to take your journey with Orthodox Auto, you are choosing a company that only uses the highest quality components and designs for its engine assemblies and transmissions. 

At Orthodox Auto, we process nearly 8,000 vehicles a year. When you combine our expansive network, industry trade secrets, and enormous vehicle data information, you’re choosing the best option available. We will comb not only our inventory but every certified facility we do business with and find those precious gems, just for you. And once we do, we always throw our industry leading guarantees on top.

Contact Us Today

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