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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 10-08-2004, 06:44 PM
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SBC Advice

I am currently in the process of making some changes to my 350 SBC.

It's in a 1979 Chevy Malibu that we built up for the 2004 hot rod power tour. The goal was to make a beater that would make it for the entire haul, which it did. However, now that the tour is over and I have some more time/money, I want to start making it perform much better. If you were on the tour, you might remember my car as the primer grey malibu with a tan vinyl top and cowboy skull hood ornament. attachment shows the car.

So, I must admit, I'm still quite new to the complex world of building up motors. This is my first project car, so everything I do is "first time" at this point. Since the tour, I've been focusing on the car's handling, so I've replaced the shocks, springs, and am looking for a better steering box, but no luck at the yards yet.

But now, I want to switch back to getting some more power in this beater.

Here is the current setup:
-mostly stock 350 from a 1988 Caprice Cop car. (stock rollercam)
-stock pistons, crank, cam, heads, etc.
-edelbrock performer intake
-carter afb 600cfm carb (I think it's a 600... could be a 550)
-headers, flowmaster mufflers, dynomax dual exhaust

Anyway, what I'm looking to do is get this car into the low 14s, high 13s, possibly better... shouldn't be that tough to do.

What I was thinking was:
-new vortec heads.
-edelbrock performer vortec intake
-new cam
-new rocker arms
-new HEI distributor/msd ignition (the HEI I have is horrible past 4000rpm...)
-possibly a new holley carb if needed with the new setup.

I have been looking around and saw the following, which would get me started by getting the heads and intake done:
http://www.sdpc2000.com/cart.asp?act...2172&pid=89539

I was just looking to see if anyone out there has any experience in building up the 1987-95 SBC that came with stock rollercam.

Any suggestions on a cam to use with the Vortec heads?

Any advice you have is greatly appreciated.
thanks!

-Frank
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Old 10-08-2004, 08:43 PM
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How about the GM "Hot" roller cam? It should work good for what you have planned...
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Old 10-08-2004, 10:27 PM
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Even with the engine mods you have planned, it`s still not likely to get you where you want to be in ET`s, The first thing I would do is get some gears under it.
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Old 10-09-2004, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by DoubleVision
Even with the engine mods you have planned, it`s still not likely to get you where you want to be in ET`s, The first thing I would do is get some gears under it.
What would you suggest, specifically? (remember I'm really quite a novice, and not afraid to admit it...) it's got a stock GM rear with a locker in it.

And it's hooked up to a TH700R4.

thanks for any info!
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Old 10-09-2004, 09:27 PM
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Likely you have 3.42 rear gears, a step up to 3.73 would help alot, possibly 4.10, The cheapest most effective route IMO would be to build a stroker, 383, Canfield 195cc Alum heads, 230 Duration cam the RPM air gap, and a Holley HP 750 , 1 3/4 hooker headers, and a good aftermarket exhaust system, That should get you low 13's high 12's N/a...


If you want a drag car, spend money on the suspension, Tires, Gear, stall etc... you can run low 14's (I would think) with what you have with a Drag suspension and sticky tires and a hard launch...

Street or strip? that is the question you need to ask yourself, there are plenty of street worthy cars out there that are seriously fast, and in most cases the key is to use awsome heads with Big CID and moderate compression, N/a, If all your looking for is a timeslip to brag about a 150 shot of giggle gas should be enough to attain your goals...


2wld4u
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Old 10-09-2004, 09:54 PM
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While the stroker build listed above would work great, it sounds to me like you want to work with what you have and not totally start over. I think that you can get to the 14's with little problem at all.......maybe 13's with some tweaking.

I like your idea on the vortecs and intake swap. That is a proven combination. The one thing to keep in mind is that if you want to go very big on the cam, you need to have the valve guides on the heads cut down to accomodate more lift. They can start binding around .450 lift in stock fashion as documented by alot of builders on this site. Another thing to concider is getting a set of springs matched to your cam installed at the same time.

As for the cam, I thing that somthing in the 230 duration @.050 lift is a good place to be for a street strip type car. I also like cams that have a fairly tight lsa....probably 108 degrees. With a roller, lift could be .500 or a little more on a cam this large which is why I mentioned the above issue.

Top that combination off with a Holley 750 vacuum secondary carb and you will have a nice combo. Some will scream double pumper, but for a novice the vacuum secondary carb is much easier to cut your teeth on a learn tuning.

I also agree that a gear change is needed to get the most out of your combination, but I would get it running with the new engine changes first and then decide what gear set is right.

Chris
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Old 10-10-2004, 12:37 PM
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Chris,
thanks for the good response. I definitely am on a budget, and as you correctly assume, I have a motor that I'm working with and don't want to totally rebuild the whole thing.

2wld4u, those are some great suggestions, but I really can't afford to convert this motor over to a stroker... I have a low mile 4bolt 350 I might be able to get dirt cheap, and I'm really thinking about making it into a stroker... so I'll keep your advice close by when that time comes.

The vortecs that I'm looking to get are described as: "The upgraded, roller heads have been modified to accept our heavy duty Z28 valve springs with lightweight LT4 retainers. This produces a high reving cylinder head that can handle up to 0.575" lift hydraulic roller camshafts. "

So, hopefully, this will accomodate most cams that I might consider. I've been thinking about the hot-cam a little more and talking about it with some friends, and we think it might not give the bottom end "oomph" we're looking for, which is one of the car's big problems at this point.

I definitely want a car that is more street than strip. No Nitrous needed, just want the car to be something that is "surly" and totally fun to drive. In fact, I don't care that much about timeslips, it's more about being able to drive a car that stands up for itself on the street, representing the time and effort I've put into it. (of course, it's always nice to know you can run a good time).

A gear change is definitely in this car's future, but until I win the lottery, I have to spread out the big changes. Engine first, then new gears later. Hopefully lots of things later.... if things continue as they have been.

Thanks, and if anyone else has any other ideas, let me know.
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Old 10-10-2004, 12:59 PM
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Those heads sound good. I would definately make very sure what was done to the heads and talk to the machinist. If you cant do that, it would pay to have a machine shop check seat pressures and any binding issues. It will not cost much at all and then you will know it is right or catch any problems up front.

Chris
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Old 10-10-2004, 01:34 PM
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Cool

There is certainly nothing wrong with the Vortec heads, the chamber's are very efficient... I think SD offer's a cmplete top end package, with the vortec heads, I would use the GM Hot Cam 218/228 .492/.492 112* with the vortech heads, and the RPM air gap Intake, and a good holley style carb, 650 would be fine, I would however use steel shim head gaskets to bump your compression up a lil, and possibly use 1.6 rockers...you should be good for 380+hp... you will however need a good set of headers, keeping cost in mind, I like the Flow tech after burner header's, very good headers for the cash, and yes, with the Hot cam, you should have plenty of bottom end grunt... and should work fairly well with 3.42 rear gears, a stall converter around 2200 should be all you need as well...Ofcourse a well build 383 would be better but the vortec head combo isnt bad at all....

2wld4u
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