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Old 02-12-2014, 08:03 PM
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1958 Chrysler Spitfire Engine

I came across a 4bbl spitfire engine. It is in a 1958 Saratoga. It is complete carb to pan.

It seems like a good deal. I don't need the engine I am just curious if I should grab it and put it on the shelf. I haven't seen many of them.

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Old 02-12-2014, 08:53 PM
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here read this and then buy it.

AHPS - Tech Pages Article
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:07 PM
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Cool. I knew it was a "poly" and not a hemi, but I did not know that the bottom end was based on a 354 Hemi. I thought it would be a cool engine for a rod. Im going to go buy it this weekend. I have to pull it out of the wagon. I might grab the trans just for giggles as well.

Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethn_bert View Post
I came across a 4bbl spitfire engine. It is in a 1958 Saratoga. It is complete carb to pan.

It seems like a good deal. I don't need the engine I am just curious if I should grab it and put it on the shelf. I haven't seen many of them.
It seems I remember the Saratogas came with a wedge motor, not a hemi. The New Yorker and Imperial came with a hemi for '58. A hemi will say FirePower on the valve covers, not spitfire, and a hemi will have the spark plugs way down inside a tube in the middle of the valve covers.
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:31 PM
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The 354 was a short-term Hemi, being in place for only this one year. The 354 block continued through 1958 using the Polyspheric heads and was called the Chrysler "Spitfire V8". This was used in the Chrysler Windsor and Saratoga models from 1955-1958.

From the above link.

I know it is not a wedge engine. It is a 1958 saratoga 4bbl spitfire engine; still in the car.

I am going to buy it. 310hp and 400lbs torque is impressive for a rare little engine like that.
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Old 02-12-2014, 09:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethn_bert View Post
The 354 was a short-term Hemi, being in place for only this one year. The 354 block continued through 1958 using the Polyspheric heads and was called the Chrysler "Spitfire V8". This was used in the Chrysler Windsor and Saratoga models from 1955-1958.

From the above link.

I know it is not a wedge engine. It is a 1958 saratoga 4bbl spitfire engine; still in the car.

I am going to buy it. 310hp and 400lbs torque is impressive for a rare little engine like that.
Son, if it's not a hemi, it's a wedge. It's one or the other. Please don't try to school me on hemis, I was a teenager when those motors were new and have built a few of them.
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Old 02-12-2014, 10:14 PM
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I wasn't schooling you on anything. I thought a wedge motor referred to the valves/combustion chamber. Spherical chamber is a hemi or poly with canted valves. A wedge is wedge shaped chamber and valves in a straight line. Like the B/RB engines. I always thought it hemi,poly, and wedge.
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:48 AM
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The Poly when first introduced was a semi hemi and gradually during its upgrades to increase compression became more of a wedged combustion chamber by the introduction of a cast in quench pad ! I'm one who worked for Mopar and the same bench chatter went around then about the Poly and Hemi ! There is a thread on here that shows pics of the combustion chamber evolution of the poly as it becomes almost a true wedge and then became obsolete and replaced by the wedge engines!

Jester
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethn_bert View Post
I came across a 4bbl spitfire engine. It is in a 1958 Saratoga. It is complete carb to pan.

It seems like a good deal. I don't need the engine I am just curious if I should grab it and put it on the shelf. I haven't seen many of them.
I'd grab it. A highly under rated and very unique engine. The polysphere shares a lot in common with the smaller hemi's, but the head is unique not quite hemi, not quite wedge. Once you've seen one apart you have to ask youself if Chevy engineering had one of these heads when they started to work on the mystery motor aka Rat. The Rat head looks to me like what can be done to a polysphere when you use a stud mounted rocker.

Pretty rare and unique piece of engineering and I'm not a Chrysler guy.

Bogie
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Old 02-13-2014, 01:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ethn_bert View Post
I wasn't schooling you on anything. I thought a wedge motor referred to the valves/combustion chamber. Spherical chamber is a hemi or poly with canted valves. A wedge is wedge shaped chamber and valves in a straight line. Like the B/RB engines. I always thought it hemi,poly, and wedge.
You may be right. I was just trying to make the distinction between a true hemi combustion chamber and NOT a true hemi combustion chamber. In other words, there is the hemi and then there is everything else that is not a hemi.
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Old 02-13-2014, 01:53 PM
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I raced the RED RAM poli years ago, there was a lot of speed equipment available then, now I see a little at swap meets now and then It was a very underestimated engine like oldbogie said and it would make a great street rod engine those scalloped valve covers were cool

Jester
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Old 02-16-2014, 09:54 AM
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I snagged it and put it on the shelf. I have some old 392 hemi performance parts. Intake looks like it would interchange.
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:43 AM
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Interesting thread but.....................
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Old 02-17-2014, 11:24 AM
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http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/atta...1&d=1392661371

http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/atta...1&d=1392661450
http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/atta...1&d=1392661828

Jester
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Old 02-17-2014, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techinspector1 View Post
there is the hemi and then there is everything else that is not a hemi.
Strictly speaking, you're right, it's not a true hemi. It's more like a Cleveland Ford (or the so-called "Ball Stud Hemi" that Chrysler's R&D Department was playing around with in the late-60's) than either a true hemi or a true wedge

My understanding is that the double rocker-shaft hemi was expensive to produce, so the poly-valve was an attempt to create a "best of both worlds" engine with a single rocker-shaft
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