BBC, 396 cast#3856208 rect port head - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 09-12-2008, 08:16 AM
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BBC, 396 cast#3856208 rect port head

Hey there,
I am going to buy these rectangular port heads 3856208 for my old 396
build to match my 3855992 4 bolt block. I am going the L88 solid
lifter cam grind to get the 396/425+hp. to run in my 65 Malibu.
I cannot find any flow numbers, CC's etc..on these heads. Mortect
site for BBC heads is blank. I think it is their site down or somethnig.
Is anyone out there that knows this info? please.
Thanks

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Old 09-12-2008, 10:07 AM
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These are early heads ...1965 off a 425 HP vette or a 375 HP chevelle. They are a closed port combustion chamber so 109 cc. "IF" your thinking about running Sq. Port heads on the street as a daily driver, I'd suggest re-thinking the idea. It'll be coughing and sputtering under 3000 RPM ...been there! The other aspect of these "closed port" heads, they are old tech., if you're looking to sink some $$$ into this engine, I'd look for something with an "open port" configuration. You'd be way ahead ...my $0.02 anyway, Good Luck!

PS ...look here for head info.
http://www.minuit10.net/EngineCode/c...linderHead.htm
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Old 09-12-2008, 10:19 AM
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208 BBC heads info GM-11echo

Thanks very much for the info and link GM 11echo.
I am running on the street...eventually. I know I should
go BIG CUBES vs a 396. This is the old 65-66 cast#3855962
with the thick walls that I can punch out to 4.25" to make
my 427. I am old school too....just want the 427 in my 65
Chevelle for nostalgia(sp) BUT..!! I want it to scream. I am gonna use
the L88 solid cam cuz I like the sound and pretty good performance.
Anyway...I do have a set of BBC 049 heads that sounds like i should
just rebuild those...with a little work they can keep up to the best of the
after market ones.
Any in-put would be great, thanks
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Old 09-12-2008, 10:53 AM
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How much compression do you want? I run closed chamber heads because to get a decent compression ratio with open chamber heads you will need to get a custom piston.................................high dome closed chamber pistons do not work with open chamber heads
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Old 09-12-2008, 11:02 AM
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BBC heads old 396-427

Thanks "BBCMudbogger"
I want to get to where the old 427 L88
engine was. So 11:1 or so. I will only be
using this thing on weekends and maybe to
work once in a while. So boarder line pump gas
will work. I think I can get away with pump for 11:1???
The 435hp 427 had 12:5.1, I think. I would like that and
just add octane booster at every fill up. But do not know
if that octane booster is really all its cracked up to be. Even
if I could find a place that has 100-102 octane I could just mix
2-3 gallons with a tank full. I just want a potent 427, but do not
want to really have to put more than Super Unleaded into her.
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Old 09-12-2008, 11:39 AM
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So many variables for octane vs compression ration
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Old 09-12-2008, 01:05 PM
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Rect Port Heads "GM 11echo"

Hello again.
I can understand your statement on running rect port
heads on the street. BUT playing the devils advicate...
60's Muscle Cars ran them from the factory. L78, L88, LS6,
etc.. The monster LS6 454 had rect port heads and it was a good
runner all around. The L88 was a tire burner that ate up the gas,
but sounded like no other.
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Old 09-12-2008, 01:30 PM
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Thats why most were 4spd cars....a mild stall will clear it up for you
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Old 09-12-2008, 03:14 PM
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Your are right these Sq. port heads were offered on the big Chevy motors, but driving daily thru traffic was pure torture! I had/have a 69 Vette with a then grate LS6 engine ...427 with 12:1 pistons ...This was about early 80's. I could see that 12:1 on the street were going to be a pain, so I knocked then down to 11:1 and dropped the cam down to about 560 lift and 310 duration (I'm alittle weak remembering the lift, but I remember the duration value!) With that amount of over-lap on the valves it "kills" the vacuum! So instead of the normal 8 to 12 inches of vacuum you have at idle ...and to run your car ...and all the vacuum actuated equipment on a Vette, I had 4 inches! Now add the big Sq. port heads, so under 3000 RPM there is next to no vacuum to pull gas into the combustion chamber ..so going from light to light it was coughing and sputtering really bad! So instead of impressing everyone, they thought my car run like cr*p! *G* Only the lucky few that were in my car when I was getting on the freeway were impressed!!
Big heads and cams run really well when they are allow to breath at high RPMs. So now that I've shot a hole in your bubble, there is some light at he end of the tunnel! I still have the Vette, but I'm running 9.5:1 hyper pistons, and a 280 duration cam with oval port heads (049 casting ...the "good" factory casting). One thing I did learn ...off the line, oval port heads are "quicker" then Sq. port heads ...just Sq. port heads are overall faster.
Bottomline it's easy to get caught up in this speed stuff ...bigger is always better! But the manufacturer is "normally" looking at track application ...Chevy was when they generated the L88 ...they just offered it on street machines so they could run in super stock (type) classes ...it wasn't made so Granny could run to the market!! AGAIN my $0.02! Good Luck!
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Old 09-12-2008, 03:29 PM
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BBC Rect/Oval Heads - GM 11echo

Hey thanks. nope..no burst bubble..I appreciate the
education. Since I am only gonna be in this thing on weekends
and well you how it is....I sure do like that L88 cam. The specs
I have for it are: "solid .540I/560E, 262I/.269E w/133deg overlap.
OR Isky has a solid out there 396245, Z-45 grind.
OR..!! be nice to get the solid grind design in a hyd cam. People say
your always adjusting a solid, but I know people that have them and if
its done right a guy may have to re-adj maybe 2-3 year.
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Old 09-12-2008, 06:45 PM
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Solid lifter cams is another story, I put one in my 65 GTO a Sig Erson, again I forget the lift but the durations was 292. It ran like a bat out off hell when everything was adjusted ...it would last 2 weeks! Then I'd have to adjust them again ...just the way it was. It would probably have been better if the tops of my rocker arms studs were machined flat ..even contact surface for the locking screws ...But I did this for about a year and a half. Then for some stupid reason I decided to go into the Army and while I was away my parents sold my car.
I'd get solids again, as long as it was easy to get to the lifters. Your chevelle is pretty close to my GTO ...and at this time in my life it would be border line for me to go solids again ...just too lazy! *G*
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Old 09-12-2008, 11:59 PM
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9.5:1 is the limit on a BBC for pump gas.

Solid lifters only need to be adjusted every few months of driving if you use the right nuts and rocker arm studs.

There is nothing wrong with closed chamber heads. As long as it is the later style and not the very early closed chambers.

I just ran my 489 bbc on the dyno today and it made 550 hp and 550 ft/lbs on 91 octane gas.

I know you want nostalgia but nobody is going to know the difference except you. I could tell somebody that my motor is a 396 and they would never know. The solid roller sounds just like a solid lifter cam, the blocks all look the same and you would be giving up tons of power to use the outdated technology.
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Old 09-13-2008, 12:40 PM
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I am on my second set of rectangular port heads on my 454.It started as a LS-6 crate motor with the 188 cast iron heads,it never "coughed or sputtered" below 3000 RPM.I put lots of highway miles on it at 2500 RPM,with a Comp solid roller cam,.650 lift & 243 dur. @ 0.050.With my Brodix RR rectangular port heads and a new custom ground solid roller,I can cruise as low as 2000 rpm,and have not experienced any problems.It has lots of bottom end grunt,and will fry the tires through 1st,2nd & 3rd gear with no effort.The rect heads get a bad reputation,but I cant complain about how mine work.
Guy
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Old 09-13-2008, 12:51 PM
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396 Rect Port Heads--Guy Hiltz

Hey man thanks for the info. I really am steering towards the
rect port heads. I like the L88 427 solid lifter engine. My cast
#3855962 396 4-bolt block that I am into...GM says they live at
6000rpm all day. Not that that's what I'll be doing, but I know when
I do drive it...I'm gonna be on it all the time. I have a set of 049 heads
as well.
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