Originally Posted by Dean Pearson
I have an 85 454 out of a suburban I plan to use in my Studebaker project.
It has cast iron rectangular port heads and the rest is stock.
What will give me the most bang for the buck as far as bumping up the H.P.
What's the casting number of the heads? There are small and open chamber rectangle port heads, this will have a big effect on the compression ratio (CR). Also, what size is the piston dome, or a part number? Or are they flat tops? Do you have the heads off? If you do, measure how far down the deck of the piston is at TDC.
Reason is, you need to know what the CR is before you can choose a cam that will work the best for you. If you have FT pistons about the most CR you're going to see is 9:1, that's with 100 cc chambers. 8.5:1 w/108 cc, and 8:1 w/118 cc. You can get away w/less CR than a SBC, but you can't go too
radical w/the cam timing before you start to lose bottom end and the off idle and low end response gets soggy.