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Old 04-11-2006, 10:22 AM
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OK so my question

Like i said in my intro, i have a Pontiac Trans am and i am rebuilding it. i am starting with the engine and i wanted to know what i could buy to get the most horsepower with the least amount of money. i know all the performance parts and everything like that but if anyone has any suggestions of places to order them from or even tricks to get the most out of my money.

greatly appreciated.

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Old 04-11-2006, 11:31 AM
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Not trying to be smart or anything but first thing to do is learn about Pontiacs. Their is no real "Big Block" Pontiac. Just different bore and stroke configurations. But they're are some yearly changes that won't interchange even amungst the same size engines.

Second, what's in your car now? A 400 covers a lot of ground in Pontiac. Heads have a number on the center exhaust ports. Block will have casting numbers as well.

Start here. http://www.yearone.com/updatedsingle...ontengid1.html

Also here.
http://www.pontiacpower.net/links1.html

Learn the nuances of Pontiacs before you start ordering aftermarket parts. Pick up a copy of High Performance Pontiac magazine and subscribe, lots of good info there.

General rules apply to Pontiacs like other engines. Open up the exhaust to let it breath, headers, free flow mufflers, etc... better ignition, re-tune the quadrajet, better breather. Pontiac made many good intake manifolds, and aftermarket aluminum ones can be found cheap at swap meets. A change to 1.65:1 rockers if your engine has the standard 1.5:1

Many other tricks get into money, cam swap, stroker crank like a 428 or a turned 455 crank in a 400 gives you more cubes without the large 455 main journals but require some expertise to pull it off.
Biggest cheap and easy gains on a Pontiac come from a head swap, cam shaft, rockers and exhaust.
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Old 04-12-2006, 04:02 PM
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if i were you, i wouldnt start with rebuilding the engine. many of times ive seen people in trans ams, firebirds, and almost every other make of car....
they put all the money into the drivetrain but dont have the suspension to lay down the power. start with stiffining the frame/unibody. frame connectors,& cage last forever and can get pretty costly if you cannot do the work yourself. but when its said and done, you will never have to worry about it and you can put in as much power as you wish.

after the chassis is strong, i would move to the rearend, buy a center section, axles and gears. along with suspension components again they last awhile.

after those two steps are done, i would spend my money on a front end rebuild kit. polygraphite bushings along with new ball joints make driving your car alot more fun when your not all over the place due to worn out bushings.

engine work can go both ways, depending who you know or who you blo.
ive built 400 hp pontiac 400's for as little as 1k and as much as 4 k.

like anything induction is key! heads, cam, and intake.

stick to 1967-1972 heads, they provide the best compression ratio.

go to your local book store and buy Jim Hand's "how to build performance pontiacs". teaches you everything you need to know, set up, tricks, recipes, head porting and anything else you need to know! OUTSTANDING BOOK!

im sure your heads need to be swapped, look for a set and know what they are before you buy them! (ie 6x-4/6x-8) for a novice pontiac builder, it would be easy to confuse heads of simular design, look for a head that has 2.11/1.66 valves and screw in studs. #16's work very well but are hard to come by.

another thing that most pontiac builders dont do is match their intake to their heads, this restricts flow tremendously,(because you actually offset the intake runners when you tighten down the water inlet before you tighten down the intake) but takes some skill to do it, jims book goes throu a step by step procedure.


a site i often use for pontiac info is www.wallaceracing.net they have a great head search and need to know info when building low buck poncho blocks.
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Old 04-13-2006, 10:22 PM
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My advice is that you're starting at the wrong end of the car. The first thing you need is a gear, then a converter, then work on the motor.
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Old 04-14-2006, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StockSux83
Like i said in my intro, i have a Pontiac Trans am and i am rebuilding it. i am starting with the engine and i wanted to know what i could buy to get the most horsepower with the least amount of money. i know all the performance parts and everything like that but if anyone has any suggestions of places to order them from or even tricks to get the most out of my money.

greatly appreciated.
Welcome to the site

We really don't know what you are working on. Your name implies an 83 FB with a 305.

The most bang for the buck is nitrous, even though it is a recurring expense with the refills.

Generally I would suggest this sequence to anyone.
Headers, exhaust, distributor advance curve, intake/carb, cold air induction, camshaft, heads, compression/engine modifications. Chassis dyno tune up. Substitution of a 350 or larger engine should be a consideration.

Torque converter depends upon power made, but 2200 would help a lot with a stock engine. Rear gear depending on what your goal is.

Consider that each horsepower gained will cost you about $ 25.
Gas mileage is not a consideration if you are looking for more power.

www.readershotrods.com
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