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Old 04-17-2007, 09:59 AM
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The L65 350 opinion

I have a 75 Camaro with the original L65 350. I've heard that the L65 is crap but I wanted your opinion. My ultimate goal is a daily driver with around 350hp. (I don't want some Toyoda that sounds like a weed-eater on steroids flying by me)

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Old 04-17-2007, 10:45 AM
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Your engine is typical of the 70's -80's low hp, low compression, no cam V-8's that were coming out of the factory then due to insurance companies and smog rules. But its not crap per se, rebuilt with the proper combination of parts you could have a very nice running street engine. I would however replace the heads with a set of GM Vortechs instead of using the stockers. Due a search and you'll find a ton of info on what a good street build would yield.
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Old 04-17-2007, 10:51 AM
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Vortec heads, edelbrock performer vortec intake, mild cam in the 210 intake duration range, 87 octane, 350 hp all day.

Ebay Vortec heads rebuilt can be had for $300-400 a pair already modified for .550" lift. Buy an intake used for $100. Gasket set is $30. Used headers for $65. I believe the L65 is a 2bbl, right? Rebuilt Qjet for $150. Ignition recurve kit $15

Worst case scenario is that you can do it for $700. You could save a little and use more cam and less heads, like camel humps, but you'll probably end up spending more on carb, valvetrain, and premium gas than you would with the Vortecs.
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Old 04-17-2007, 12:30 PM
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Thanks for the reply. I'm a total newbie at this. I've worked as an industrial mechanic but never on engines.
It actually has headers on it now (no pipes) but I don't know anything about them. The cam was changed a couple of years ago for what I was told was an RV pulling cam (unknown duration). It also has a Holly Dominator intake. The carb was missing when I bought it but I got a cheap Holly 3310 (750 vacuum secondary) just to get it running. If it's not too big for the engine I'll rebuild it. I've heard that you can run a bigger (or too big) carb if it has the vacuum secondaries.
The Vortecs sound like the way to go.
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Old 04-17-2007, 12:51 PM
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I'm with Curtis all the way on this one. I'm building almost the exact engine he described for my '89 Sportside Chevy except with a milder Marine roller cam. I have talked to others with similar combos and they made an honest 350 FWHP and were pulling 20 MPG plus in half ton PU's!

The 750 Holley will "work" but low speed driveability and mileage will suffer compared to the Q-Jet or even a 600 Holley due to it's considerably larger primaries. Holley applied the "Dominator" name in one form or another to several different intakes over the years, some really good ones and some not so good. It should have a 300-XX part number on it somewhere that is the best way to tell you what you have. With any luck it is the 300-36 which is a copy of the old Z/28 and LT-1 intake. This particular manifold has been called the "Street Dominator", "Contender" and "Street Dominator II" over the years. There was also a PN 300-19 single plane "Street Dominator" and I think the 300-38 Dual Plane got called Street Dominator at one time. No rhyme or reason to it that's why the part number is the way to go. At least Edelbrock and Weiand had some consistency to the product names. Although it won't work with Vortec heads it is still good trading material along with the Holley carb.
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Old 04-17-2007, 01:59 PM
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Thanks for the info Hippie! The intake is a dual plane "Street Dominator" but I'm not home to check the #s. I guess it doesn't matter if it won't work on the Vortec heads. I recently got a powder coating system. I think I'll powder the intake and carb (-w- rebuild) and E-bay them. I've been wanting an excuse to try the chrome/clear anyway.
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