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Old 10-15-2006, 08:53 PM
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power without sacrificing ecomany

hi i have a 1980 camaro 350 4speed posi trac and the thing is bone stock. Ive been told its rated at 180 hp and I would like to bump that up to more like 300 without uping my octaine or killing my gas mileage. Is this posible or am i dreaming. Oh and any tunning tricks to up the hp would be nice to. thanks


Last edited by rockandroller1991; 10-16-2006 at 10:21 AM.
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Old 10-16-2006, 12:14 PM
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Edelbrock performer rpm pakage

Edit:Should put you at about 350hp because of compression. Use a 650cfm carb or bigger.
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Old 10-16-2006, 01:38 PM
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Should be easy to make more power and get the same or even better mpg.

Concentrate on making torque and you will see gains in acceleration, hp, and mpg.

I would start with a set of Thorley tri-Y headers and 2.5" exhaust with dynomax super turbo mufflers and a X pipe. Then add an Edelbrock performer intake and use your current Q-jet carb. Then install a performer plus cam and lifter kit and double roller timing chain. This should be good for around 285hp. A bigger cam will get you into the 300's but will hurt mpg.

To make 300hp with a good mpg cam you will need have your current heads bowl smoothed (good for 20hp+) or you will need to up-grade to a better set of heads. I would get a set of 170cc Edelbrock performer heads with 64cc chambers which should be good for 340hp with a mild, smooth idle, good mpg cam.

You should have 76cc heads with about 8.5:1 cr stock. If you install 64cc heads the cr will go up to 9.6:1 cr which is fine for a mild cam, pump gas, used with aluminum heads.

With stock heads I would use the performer plus cam because it has more exhaust duration than intake duration to help make up for poor flowing stock exhaust ports. If a good flowing aftermarket head is used, like the edelbrock performer head, then I would use a cam with the same intake and exhaust duration, like a crane 100042 (210/210, 0.440"/0.440") or compcam 252H with 206/206 duration at 0.050" or for a few more hp with a little less mpg, the compcam 260H with 212/212 at 0.050".

I would get the edelbrock performer heads (not rpms) in order to get an exhaust cross over under the carb to help heat the fuel for better fuel delivery in cool weather. Where are you from and do you drive in cold weather?
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Old 10-16-2006, 02:39 PM
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Once you do the big stuff, don't forget to go back and address the "little things".

For example, if you keep the '80 350's HEI, the mechanical timing advance does not fully kick in until over 4000 RPM's (on the LM1's at least, IIRC). You can pick up a recurve kit for your distributor & a timing tape for less than $20. I set my mechanical advance to kickin in fully by around 3k RPM & it noticably improved the low/mid RPM "pull" of the engine.
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Old 10-16-2006, 03:05 PM
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The vortec heads would also work and would be a little cheaper. If you are only looking for 300 hp, I would try to match the motor below.


Here are the parts I would recommend:

Vortec heads able to handle .525 lift: $340 http://www.sdpc2000.com/catalog/2172...ng-Upgrade.htm

Self aligning rocker arms: $57

Vortec chrome valve covers:$48

Performer Vortec intake: $164

Personally, I would go with the XE262H cam (218 224 @.050 .462 .469 lift) you could probably get a little better mileage out of the cam one step smaller, but I think there is alot of performance to be gained with this cam over the smaller one.

Cam and lifters: $170

I would also recommend a ~600 cfm carb max

I think you would be looking at around 350 hp with this setup. If you wanted, you could drop to the XE256H cam (212 218 @.050 .447 .454 lift) and still be in the 330 range but pick up a little mileage

It says that these cams are not legal for sale or use on pollution controlled vehicles, I dont know if you have to pass emissions or not, or what they mean by that, but some others may be able to help out with that. It is also important to know what your new compression would be. Below is a compression calculator. If you have 8.5:1 with 76cc chambers, according to this calculator, you would have 9.6:1 as 454C10 stated. If that is the case, I would recommend premium with this setup.

Compression calculator


Last edited by firestone; 10-16-2006 at 03:16 PM.
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Old 10-16-2006, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by 53_belair
Edelbrock performer rpm pakage

Edit:Should put you at about 350hp because of compression. Use a 650cfm carb or bigger.
actully 650 CFM would be the biggest recomended by many people, really only need 600 CFM on a mild 350, 500 on a stock 350.
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Old 10-16-2006, 07:22 PM
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I have a 256H xtreme energy cam in my sbc 72 truck.Im planning on going to a bigger cam though.It has great power,torque and mileage.But it only sounds a little different than stock.Its a real sleeper.I watch the little mustangs get smaller in my rear view mirror
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