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Old 05-16-2013, 01:12 AM
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355 vs 383 Cost?

Hi I'm new to this forum so sorry if this is a recurring topic that I'm beating to death. I'd just like some input on my possible build options and I'm in quite a dilemma deciding.

I work part time at an engine shop near me and I have the ability to have my engine built by my boss.

All the machining work will be free in either build but if I build a 355, he said he has all the parts I need laying around and will give them to me at no cost.

If I go with a 383, he can save me money by ordering from a warehouse he says, but I would have to buy the rotating assembly and he mentioned replacing rocker arms and springs. Right now I have 1.6 ratio roller rockers laying around but he suggests a stock 1.5 ratio and 6 inch rods.

In either case, I wanted a more agressive cam to switch from flat tapper to roller.

So I am between building the best engine I can, but the issue is money. I'm a college student and I'm trying to stretch a buck. Given my car is mainly a cruiser, would it be appropriate to just go with a 355 or should I go all out with a 383. I know it's ultimately up to me, but it'd be good to have some second opinions.

Thanks,
Joe
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Old 05-16-2013, 01:28 AM
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I just wanted to add that I am relatively new to engine building so if I say anything dumb it's lack of experience. I'm still learning...

Oh I am planning to run a pair of 64cc Edelbrock Performer RPM heads on the engine, Edelbrock performer intake, and a Holley 750cfm vac secondary carb...

My boss is going to show me how to port and polish my heads and he's going to resurface them for me, polish my valves, etc.

Joe
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Old 05-16-2013, 06:51 AM
How fast is fast enough?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohho View Post
Hi I'm new to this forum so sorry if this is a recurring topic that I'm beating to death. I'd just like some input on my possible build options and I'm in quite a dilemma deciding.

I work part time at an engine shop near me and I have the ability to have my engine built by my boss.

All the machining work will be free in either build but if I build a 355, he said he has all the parts I need laying around and will give them to me at no cost.

If I go with a 383, he can save me money by ordering from a warehouse he says, but I would have to buy the rotating assembly and he mentioned replacing rocker arms and springs. Right now I have 1.6 ratio roller rockers laying around but he suggests a stock 1.5 ratio and 6 inch rods.

In either case, I wanted a more agressive cam to switch from flat tapper to roller.

So I am between building the best engine I can, but the issue is money. I'm a college student and I'm trying to stretch a buck. Given my car is mainly a cruiser, would it be appropriate to just go with a 355 or should I go all out with a 383. I know it's ultimately up to me, but it'd be good to have some second opinions.

Thanks,
Joe

If you have all the 350 parts you want for free then I would go with the 350. the 383 does have a clear advantage of more displacement but the 350 can perform very well when built properly. You don't need every last hp so I would go with what has a clear cost advantage.

Along with that I would build your engine to run on 87 octane. Not only wll fuel be cheaper but if you do decide you want more power you can turbo or supercharge it down the road and then switch over to 93 octane- this approach is cheaper now and gives you room to grow. The disadvantage is lower compression and slightly lower power- maybe a 20hp difference on a hot street engine.

A last consideration may be not running a sbc at all but perhaps a more modern engine that has more advance controls and monitoring. A 5.3L LS engine can be had for $500 and make 400hp pretty damn easily, or perhaps a turbocharged inline 4 or 6? The sbc design is 60 years old and there have been much better engines produced since, many of them can be found pretty cheap in your local junk yard or craigslist.
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Old 05-16-2013, 07:42 AM
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your new, the parts(355) will be free, this is a no brainer..
355 FTW..
350-400 honest hp is cake, and for a newbi.. is a ton,
you'll need to learn how to control, and drive that much power,,
no need for a 383, unless he has a 400cid crank just hanging around he'll part with for free, then go 383,,
but for the little gain you'll get going 383 isn't enough to overcome a basicly new 355 for nothing.. oh, and if I was you, I'd thank him, with his favorite drink of choice..
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Old 05-16-2013, 08:57 AM
How fast is fast enough?
 
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I'd give him more than a few beers, the guy is basically offering ot help you with $700+ worth of machine work and who knows in parts. Sounds like you have a hell of an opportunity, make the most of it.
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:05 AM
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Thanks for the input guys. Yeah that's how I felt about it. I think a 355 is probably my best route. My friends argument is that I might build the 355 and regret it but I doubt that because in the future, when I actually have a stable income and am no longer a student I will most likely be able to build something much nicer with a lot more experience.

I'll talk to my boss about it and keep you posted and see what he says. He was in the same boat when I talked about the 383 and that I should save the money to put into something else. As for buying him a drink, I would but I'm 20 at the moment or else I would haha

Joe
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Old 05-16-2013, 09:13 AM
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Ap72,

He also lets me use all of his tools for anything I need.. I can't tell you convenient it is to have a bead blasting cabinet whenever you want it, especially when youre putting together an old Chevy with 40 years of rust haha.. I have a 70 Impala btw. I know I owe him more than a couple beers so I've been helping him out a lot.

Joe
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Old 05-16-2013, 07:42 PM
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No brainer 355 And take what this guy is giving you knowledge, experiance, and a shop and tools to work in and with. And pay it forward!!! I don't know how many times in my life I've done the same thing with young guys and a few gals that he is doing with you. And then they take that and refuse to help those need it the most. Most times they think it will be hurting them in the future (getting jobs or keeping them). Remember how you felt when he offered this and help someone else out. Even if you don't make a career in the automotive world it will pay you back many times over. Thanks Bill
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Old 05-16-2013, 11:26 PM
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355 is plenty big to use up all the flow in RPM heads.

Maybe build a newer hydraulic roller motor
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