Problem with heat

I have a '77 chevy 1 ton 2wd dually w/a 454 that when I drive from Denver to altitude on a hot day I get about 25 miles and 7500(ft) it starts to run pourly and if I pull over at turn off the engine, it will not start again. It’s completely dead as if the battery or starter were toast. The next morning, when it’s cooled off, it starts right up. A tune up and carb rebuild could explane the preformence at altitude but does anyone have an idea about the heat and the starter? It’s pretty tight up in there on the 454.

We can’t say if it was the heat that caused a starter problem, without more information. It is possible, but lots of things are possible.

How long has it been doing this?

This happend once before, same parking lot. At that point I dowsed the starter with the only liquid availible, (windshield fluid) being that it’s a Checker’s parking lot and it started right up and got to where I was going, that time. Keep in mind that I was pulling two horses at the time The next time I was pulling a trailer w/ furniture. After the first time, I replaced the starter. So brand knew starter. I’ve only had this truck for a short time so I figure the power problem is related to a carb rebuild and tuneup. Why the #@$%^ does the starter not engage when it’ts been under load in the heat? I really believe I’m dealing with two different probloms that are manifesting at the same time under the same conditions.
This truck was sold to me under the pretence that it had only 67K miles on it ( the preverbial old couple that had a camper on it and never used it much). The truck on the whole is in incredidible shape,(no rust, dings, all electrical works.
thanks for your input.

You forgot to mention the exhaust headers on the truck.

Your starter is being heat soaked by being in close proximity to the exhaust pipes. It’s aggravated by driving up hill, which will, of course, make exhaust temps higher. The starter motor gets so hot that its internal electrical resisitance gets so high it won’t allow enough electric current through it to generate enough torque to turn that 454 over. This is a pretty common problem on vehicles that have had aftermarket headers installed.

The cure is to restore the OEM exhaust manifolds, or put a metal heat shield between the starter and the exhaust pipe to deflect the heat from the starter.

A heat shield is available from JC Whitney,, and Summit Racing,

thanks JayWB, makes all the sense in the world.

Thanks for the link Knuckles but unfortunatly that shield won’t fit that truck.