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Old 11-16-2012, 01:59 PM
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Originally Posted by dunnp2 View Post
Hey guys, my brother has an old chevy 283 block, crank, and heads that he's willing to give me to use for a swap. It's from between '58 and '62, casting code 3757519, two bolt mains. Things are a bit rusty so everything would have to be cleaned up before the build.

My question is: is it worth it? I'm looking for 300-350 hp, not afraid of turbos if that's the way to go. The other best option would be a junkyard LS1 which would be lighter and have more power, correct?

I have zero experience with american engines, so forgive me if I don't make sense.

Would it be cheaper to machine the block and buy parts to build the engine, or just buy a complete LS1 and be done?
One option that I don't think has been mentioned is to find a 1996-2000 L31 5.7L Vortec long block (an L31 Vortec long block includes the Vortec heads) or a 1986-up sbc 350 short block equipped w/the factory roller cam and lifters and add your choice of heads to it.

The ability to build an inexpensive engine that uses roller lifters is a real plus, given the poor quality of the over the counter motor oils and the possible cam break in problems w/flat tappet cams these days.

An engine like the Vortec long block w/a mild cam and a 4-barrel carb and intake and carb along w/headers and a reworked GM HEI distributor will reliably make your power goals w/o breaking a sweat, and can do it very inexpensively.

But whatever you decide, good luck and be sure to ask about parts and such first before shelling out your hard-earned money.
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