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Old 05-20-2008, 11:20 AM
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Building a sbc 406

I'm in the very beginnig stages of putting together a 406. It's going in a street/strip 73 Nova. I have the block, crank, rods, damper and flywheel. I haven't put an engine together since high school (mid 80's). With all the new products out there, I guess I'm lookin for a little guidance. I'm looking to get the most out of it without completely breaking the bank. I still want to run pump gas so compression has to be no more than 11 if I remember right. Looking for a good head, cam, piston, intake combo. A nice lopey idle would be great, but still need adequate vacuum for power brakes etc... I already have 1.6 roller rockers, an Edelbrock Performer EPS intake and a Holley 4150 carb on the 350 already in the car. It's going in front of a M21 4speed and 3.73 gears. I might jump to 3.90 or 4.10 later. Thanks in advance, Joe

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Old 05-20-2008, 12:51 PM
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To some of us, breaking the bank is $2K. For others it's $7K. For others still more, others much less. You might get some good responses here if you define the size of the bank.

Pat
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Old 05-20-2008, 12:57 PM
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somewhere around $2-$2500.
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Old 05-20-2008, 01:10 PM
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Dart Iron eagle 215 topend kit from summet is $1500.
Since you have a stick I say get a great big hyd roller.
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Old 05-20-2008, 05:50 PM
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I'd suggest 5.7 rods (and appropriate pistons). Even longer, if you can.
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Old 05-20-2008, 06:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hardhatz
I'd suggest 5.7 rods (and appropriate pistons). Even longer, if you can.
Please read Iskenderian Tech Tip 2005 here......
http://www.iskycams.com/techtips.php
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Old 05-20-2008, 11:31 PM
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While I respect the Mr. Iskendarian's opinion, there are other gentlemen of similar qualifications with the opposite view. I'm not sure who is correct.
My suggestion was prompted by a desire to decrease thrust on the cylinder walls.

My personal experience with 400s is that they need extra attention to wake them up in the top end. I think longer rods would help that.
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Old 05-21-2008, 10:47 AM
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I'm a little more interested in the low to mid range. Seriously, how often can I really break a 100, haha. I already have GM 2.02 heads. Are aluminum really worth the money since its not really a weight issue? It'll definately be more street than strip. Just an occasional pass to see where its at.
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Old 05-21-2008, 11:31 AM
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Joe,

My bad. I was thinking more "strip" than "street"...
If you are mainly just cruising, forget long rods.

Get a nice flat tappet or retrofit-roller hydraulic cam with about 220-225 (duration at .050) on the intake, and 225-230 on the exhaust, to get the rump-rump you want. Roller is better, in this age of politically-neutered motor oils.

Other than that, its all in the heads. Bottom line: Vortecs are hard to beat for the bucks. If you fall into money, go AFR.

If you plan to cover a lot of miles, I'd put a Q-Jet on there.
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Old 05-22-2008, 01:59 AM
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Politically neutered oils!!!! Ain't that the truth........
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Old 05-22-2008, 10:48 AM
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You say you have a set of 2.02 heads now. What is the casting number?
(between the valve springs)
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Old 05-22-2008, 11:13 AM
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To answer your question Aluminum is not better than cast iron in a performance aspect. They are lighter and easier to repair but that is about it. There are some very small advantages to the material that may allow you to run slightly higher compression but if you are running 11:1 you will need more than just pump gas regardless of what your heads are made of.
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Old 05-22-2008, 02:16 PM
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With a 3.73 gear and M22 4 spd, a cam in the 230's duration at 0.050" would work well (compcam 280H). A cam like this will need 10:1 to 10.5:1 cr and a Performer RPM intake.

With a 4.11 gear, a cam in the 240's duration at 0.050" would work well (compcam 292H). A cam like this will need 10.5 to 11:1 cr and a Performer RPM intake.

So, get rid of the edelbrock performer eps intake.

If the heads are stock GM, you will most likely need a cam with 6 to 10 more degrees on the exhaust as compared to the intake. Typically, 110 LSA works well with a small block.
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Old 05-22-2008, 02:50 PM
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A good reason for going to 5.7 rods is strength, you can by a set from speedway, jr motorsport etc. that have been resized, shotpeened and magnafluxed for around $100.00 to 125.00 and the stock 5.7 is far stronger than the 5.565 400 rod just extra insurance pistons cost the same ,so might as well upgrade as you go.Of course if the shortblock is in good shape the stock cast pistons with a mild cam such as the comp 280 suggested and the heads you already have would make a fun daily driver on regular 87 octane.
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:27 PM
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Casting number on heads is 3927185. They are 70cc and originally 1.94's. They've been worked over and are now 2.02's.
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