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Old 09-16-2010, 09:47 PM
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Chrysler 354 Industrial Hemi

Okay, I'm doing a 48 F1 project. I have an irrigation pump that we used last about 2 years ago. According to the numbers, it's a 1956, 354 Industrial engine. I have owned it since 69. We used it to irrigate field grown roses, but only in drought conditions, and only when we had available water, so it spent most of it's time in the shed. It was run on propane, so the oil always looks like it has just been changed. This engine runs perfect. I've done some research and I want y'all to give me your 2 cents. The obvious thing is I'll have to get another intake and carb. I've heard that the cam would need to be changed ( industrial engines were made to run at a certain speed for long periods of time). I've read that the valves would need to be changed, because they are sodium filled, but I don't know why. I've seen where some say to switch to hydraulic lifters, but others say keep the adjustable rockers. I know I can adapt to a chevy water pump, and chevy fuel pump. Anything I've missed? I need feedback on the camshaft, valves, and rockers. What's so good about this engine, is like it is, it doesn't even need an overhaul...................thanks..........Bill

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Old 09-17-2010, 06:52 AM
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First off do NOT let those adjustable rockers go...they're like gold ($$$)! Second, I believe that you might be able to get away with changing out the valve guides so that you can use regular valves. The sodium valves are not for the street. You're right about the cam/intake/carb...all readily available for the 392...
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Old 09-17-2010, 06:55 PM
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Thanks for the reply, but I've still got a couple of questions. Who will want the adjustable rockers, for what purpose, and why were sodium filled valves used in industrial engines?..............Bill
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Old 09-17-2010, 07:30 PM
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The adjustable rockers are used for solid lifter cams...impossible to run one with out them. Trust me...they get big bucks for them. The sodium filled valves were used in the industrial engines for better heat transfer from the exhaust valves to the coolant...
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Old 09-17-2010, 09:15 PM
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For sure dump the sodium filled exhaust valves. They're great for low rpm use for long periods of time but no good for the street. Its interesting to point out though that some of the new performance engines, the hemi included use sodium filled valves, but of a different design and purpose than the early industrial and truck hemis.

You can always keep your adjustable rocker shafts and run a hydraulic cam if you wish but if you sell them on e-bay you should get enough to purchase a freshly rebuilt set of non adjustables and probably a set of adjustable push rods to go with them, which is what most people use when running an aftermarket hydraulic cam.

Not sure about yours but some industrial and truck engines had a tall water crossover passage in the heads that will not work with an aftermarket or automotive intake manifold so make sure which you have before you invest a lot of money in the heads. If yours have the tall water passages you can have them welded and machined to fit an aftermarket manifold but it would probably be cheaper to just pickup a set of automotive heads on e-bay.

When its time, talk to Bob Walker at HotHeads. He knows more about early hemis than most hemi guys have forgotten. If you have any questions, he's the holy grail for early hemis.

Good luck with your build.
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Old 09-18-2010, 08:27 PM
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Will I be able to look at the manifold that's on it now and tell if it has the water crossover?


Bill
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