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Old 05-21-2008, 08:30 PM
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need recommendation on heads for a 400 sbc

I have a 400 small block chev that I am running 458642 heads on ( 350 heads drilled for 400 ). they have been shaved .030, ported, polished yada yada yada....I have been running them for a few good summers now and would like to trade them out for a real set of performance aluminum heads. Now here is the scoop.
400 sb
bored 20 over, ballanced
flat top pistons
cam 236 @ .050"
2800 stall
390 gears
runs great, just would like more power and not need to use premium like I need to do with these heads.
I am wondering what you guys recommend for heads? 64 cc? 76 cc?
I want power and am willing to stick with premium if I have to keep the compression up, but at the cost of gas I would like a little less compression than I have now.
I have little knowledge on what head I need so if someone could be so kind as to give me ideas I would greatly appreciate it.
thanks
Stuccoman

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Old 05-21-2008, 10:56 PM
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You didn't say how far down in the hole you are but if you're zero decked then you might have to go to 76 cc heads to keep comp. down so you can use 87 oct. You're going to have to figure that out before you put your money down. Damned unfortunate to spend a bunch of money on nice alum. perf. heads and have to lower your comp. but thats the way things go nowadays.......when you think about it it's almost not even worth it. That being said, I use Edelbrock heads on my 331" sbc.
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Old 05-22-2008, 04:25 PM
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how far down in the hole? zero decked?
Sorry I am an idiot. Are you asking if the connecting rods are stock length? If so I am not sure. I bought the block from a local garage that was going to use it in his stock car but than changed class and couldnt use it. I bought the block assembled and balanced than put my 350 heads on it.
again I apologize for my ignorance.
I appreciate your help
Stuccoman
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Old 05-22-2008, 04:40 PM
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Heads

I like Dart for the price but I don't think you can buy a better performing set of heads than AFR. Aluminum heads will help you keep the spark knock at bay. If your deck is zero on a 400 I would not consider anything but 76 cc aluminum head. A 400 because of the longer stroke and bore creates more compression than a 350 with similar deck, cam and flat tops. If you want to run regular fuel you may want to call one of the cam makers and choose a slightly different grind to reduce compression. In the end I have found the more horses I have the more hay I need to feed.

Bob
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Old 05-22-2008, 05:01 PM
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Just about anything you bolt on to replace the heads you have is going to be a marked improvment.

Something like this head is great bang for the buck.
Brodix IK180 (70cc chamber)

or Edelbrock RPM (70cc chamber)
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Old 05-22-2008, 07:51 PM
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thanks guys.
I am thinking to go with a set of trick flow heads. Anyone have good or bad to say about these heads?
http://store.summitracing.com/partde...5&autoview=sku
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Old 05-22-2008, 08:16 PM
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I just pulled a 406 (5.7" rods +.030) out from my coupe and it had TFS twisted wedge heads on it. I personally won't have another set of them. Performance wise, they were good (made 451 HP at the crank with a 292/.501 cam, Team G intake, BG 820 CFM carb) and the compression was low at 9.2 to 1. The heads suffered a valve guide failure at 1500 miles (engine started smoking excessively). It was broken in right and at that time the guide let loose the oil had been changed 3 times. I was told by a local shop that the TFS heads are famous (their words) for having poor valve guide life.

Another problem with the heads is that you are limited by your rocker arm choice (Harland Sharps can't be used.....The only ones they recommended that I can remember are the Crane gold roller rockers). If you step up the cam, no one makes a stud girdle that I am aware of.

Keep in mind that these were bought a few years ago, so TFS may have had some quality improvements since then. For a street engine, I would recommend Edlebrock or Dart heads.
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Old 05-22-2008, 08:33 PM
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You may be stuck with using hi-grade fuel because of the cam you're using. 236* calls for a static compression ratio of 10.5:1 to 12.0:1, so that's what you're stuck with if you keep the cam you have.

Assuming 7cc's in the piston eyebrows and 9cc's in the volume described by the piston deck height/gasket compressed thickness, a 72cc head will result in a 10.4 s.c.r. A 70cc head will result in 10.6 s.c.r.

Setting the squish very tight (0.035" to 0.045") will serve to allow the use of a lesser octane fuel, all other things being equal.
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Old 05-23-2008, 04:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by techinspector1
You may be stuck with using hi-grade fuel because of the cam you're using. 236* calls for a static compression ratio of 10.5:1 to 12.0:1, so that's what you're stuck with if you keep the cam you have.

Assuming 7cc's in the piston eyebrows and 9cc's in the volume described by the piston deck height/gasket compressed thickness, a 72cc head will result in a 10.4 s.c.r. A 70cc head will result in 10.6 s.c.r.

Setting the squish very tight (0.035" to 0.045") will serve to allow the use of a lesser octane fuel, all other things being equal.

I am using a magnum comp cam. and in the specs it says it needs 9:1 CR and 2800 stall..part # 12-326-4
advertised in. and ex. are 286
in. and ex. @.050" are 236
lobe lift in. and ex. are .490
sep. angle is 110 degrees
I was told by the guy I bought the block from that I was running about 10.5:1 compression ratio with these heads shaved .030
I can run quite ok on premium but sometimes if its really hot I get pinging so I need to drop compression ratio atleast a small bit.
thanks
Stuccoman
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Old 05-23-2008, 11:13 AM
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Has anyone else noticed that when you go to local cruises and car shows all you see is AFR, but when you go to the local drags all you see is Brodix. What are your observations locally?
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Old 05-23-2008, 11:27 AM
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Heads

At our local track popularity is Dart, Brodix, Edelbrock and AFR. The quickest cars running seem to be in this order AFR, Brodix, Dart and Edelbrock.

B
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Old 05-23-2008, 12:29 PM
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I see Dart, Edelbrock, and Brodix, and a few vortec heads and still lots of camel humps still. and I've seen some world products sportsman heads. ooh I've see one set of AFR 50cc heads on a 383 stroker, this is in the south central area of nebraska. I stuck a worked over set of #187 camel humps on my 400SBC with a healthy cam and 10.5:1CR the camel humps are ported & polished petty well, and gasket matched ect. and I have a set of 062 vortec heads with comp #26918-16 beehive springs also, I might swap on my 400. a lot of the older 327 350 and 383s around here run camel humps. my camel humped headed 400 pushes the 74 Camaro with the M21 4 speed and 342 geared posi around very well. and it was built for my son that will be 16yrs old in 19 days. so IMO the camel humps were a good choice as far as my 400, and the vortecs can hold the shelf up till hes more experienced at driving.
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Old 05-23-2008, 12:46 PM
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I assume your current heads are 76cc (before shaving). And you what to drop octane requirements a little bit.

So, you need a 76cc aluminum head. A head with 190 to 210cc ports would work well with that cam, stall, and gear.

Not sure, but I think AFR is the only manufacturer that make s 76cc chamber aluminum head with 190 to 210cc ports.
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Old 05-23-2008, 12:59 PM
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sorry, not 76 but 74cc. afr street head with 195cc ports

http://gilbertautoparts.com/AFR/195sbcstreet.cfm
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Old 05-23-2008, 03:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 454C10
sorry, not 76 but 74cc. afr street head with 195cc ports

http://gilbertautoparts.com/AFR/195sbcstreet.cfm
thanks
you are recommending a set of cast heads if I read correctly.
I would like to use aluminum.
so your saying to use 74 cc heads?
would that not bring up my compression if I am using 76 cc heads right now even if I shaved them?
lower cc's higher compression? right? ( pardon my ignorance )
thanks
Stuccoman
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