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Old 10-10-2003, 05:19 PM
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Which size engine?

Hi Folks,
I'm getting ready to resolve my lack of engine in my 1/2 ton chevy pick up. what size would be best 350, 383, or 400?

I already have a eldebrock intake and 750 carb (off my 350). It also has a fresh th350 trans, 4.11 rear end with detroit lockers. My expired engine (350) has 487 heads. Should I just look for a 350 block or try to find a 400. talk to me folks, you expertise would be much appreciated. This will be my first full rebuild.

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Old 10-10-2003, 06:02 PM
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350 is probably the best, good power, good prices. 400's are getting spendy and 305's don't have the power.
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Old 10-10-2003, 06:12 PM
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hey i would go with a 383 stoker motor that is me peronaly my favorite motor and it has more power then most people need to have for a street truck
steve
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Old 10-10-2003, 06:27 PM
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Steve hit it right on. If you want a ton of torque, a stroked 350 is the only way to go especially in a pick-up. IMHO, 400s are dogs in both torque and HP. You will not be disappointed with a 383 and mild cam.

Brad
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Old 10-10-2003, 06:51 PM
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thanks for the advice folks. Is there anything about a 383 that will be above the technical skill of myself to pull it off (first engine rebuild, but I'll get a book and can follow directions)?

I've been pricing out a list of materials for both a 350 and a 383. here's what i'm considering for the rotating Assembly if I went with the 383. does anything sound overkill, or is there any bad items listed? I'll probably use the 487 heads I have now or if $$ permits pop for a set of new heads (AFR or Edelbrock, unless a cheaper equal quality alternative is recommended)

scat Forged 4340 H-Beam Rods with ARP 8740 Rod Bolts
scat 400 crank
Powerforce 400 8" harmonic balancer
Speed-Pro Powerforged Pistons
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Old 10-10-2003, 07:20 PM
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*400s are dogs in both torque and HP* this is probably the most ignorant statement I have heard for a while. 400 small blocks are great engines as long as you build them right. In the 383 you have shrowding of the valves because of the smaller bores and seeing how you are running 4:10's low end torque shouldn't be as much of a concern.I agree with bob in that a 350 is probably the best way to go.
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Old 10-10-2003, 07:21 PM
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400's are dogs? Anytime your in my area I'll take you for a full throttle run in my Camaro. I'ts 400 will change your mind about 383's.
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Old 10-10-2003, 08:58 PM
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so you folks are saying either a 350 or a 383, but definitely not a 400? I need to track down a good block and get started one way or the other.

What are negative qualities about a 400?
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Old 10-10-2003, 10:20 PM
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If you aren't going to build it over 500 hp there is no downside. Just revise the cooling passages like Fel Pro says to with their 1014 head gasket. You drill an extra cooling hole in the center of the deck surface. I never have any cooling problems. The 2 bolt main blocks are a little better but 4 bolt mains are just fine. My block is a 4 bolt main.
The 400 will have a better idle quality with the same parts that the 350 would. You don't have to wind a 400 up as much to get the same amount of power and torque. The more RPMs you run at the more chance of something breaking.
There is never going to be any substitute for cubic inches. You can force induction to compensate, but whatever you added to the smaller engine would have made that much more power on the bigger engine. You can't change the laws of physics.
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Old 10-10-2003, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Stroked_Jeep
Steve hit it right on. If you want a ton of torque, a stroked 350 is the only way to go especially in a pick-up. IMHO, 400s are dogs in both torque and HP. You will not be disappointed with a 383 and mild cam.

Brad
I have made both 383s and 400s My favorite is the 406 cheep and fast I use the stock 2 bolt block and crank I use forged dish or flat top depending on the cc of head I use a good set of rods
X rods will do but if you can 4340 are tough , I find the old 492 casting ia exelent head for it also , Shoot for 10 to 1 or lower
and a 750 min to 1000 cfm carb you can expect between 450 to 600 hp and 500 to 600 ftlbs tq iv built the 383s and I can make more horse and torque from a 400 (406) cui when done 30 over
than any 383 and it cost's less ,,
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Old 10-11-2003, 08:09 AM
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hmmm. 3 options, everyone picked a different one. Can a 350 head bolt on to a 400?

If it makes any difference the truck will see driving on the highway and on the weekends some play in the mud. plan on running 33" tires and 38" when it's time to play in the mud. rear end is a (4.11).

could someone list the pro's and cons of each (350,383,400)
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Old 10-11-2003, 08:17 AM
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*** I apologize ***. Stupid statement on my part.
You guys are right. You can build a 400 to high horsepower, but do you want to? The articles I have read about 400 buildup talk alot about middle cylinders overheat. Why wasn't the 400 as popular block as the 350?

383 shrouding? Small mod to combustion chamber eliminates exhaust valve shrouding. That is not a biggie.

Brad
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Old 10-11-2003, 11:44 AM
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400 vs 350 (383)

There are by far more 350 blocks than 400 blocks which plays a part in 350's being more popular, chevy made the 400 for its larger cars and never seriously built it for performance which made it unpopular.

Years ago I built a few 350ís and one 383, helped my brother build a 400.
My brothers 400 hands down out performed the engines I had built.
400 cubic inches out of the chevy small block is pushing the limits of the design, there for when building a 400 you have to do some extra research and build them the way a 400 need to be built, such as making sure your heads have steam holes, a larger radiator, and in my opinion 5.7Ē rods.

It had been about 15 years since I had built an engine when I started researching what engine I was going to build for a chevelle I bought.
I read lots of books, spent weeks on the internet (thatís when I found hotrodders.com), talked with many engine builders and racers in my area, and ran several engine combinations through a few different software packages.
The conclusion I came up with is as many have said before, there is no replacement for more cubic inches.
I am in the process of building a 406, which IMHO is the best bang for the buck, all my research showed that for about the same money the 406 out performs the 383.
I am no expert, my statements are from my own 6 months of research.

Snowicki the 383 and 406 are both great engines to build for lots of HP and torque, the 350 is just much easier to find.

When I am finished building the 406 I am building a 383 for a 78 camaro that I just bought, the reason I am building a 383 for it is very simple, I have a two 350ís sitting in my garage.

Best of luck with whichever build you go with you will be happy with either one.

406chevelle
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Old 10-11-2003, 12:36 PM
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thanks for the advice guys. Maybe block availability will be the deciding factor for me. I may get lucky and the 350 block I have here will still be usable, but my guess is that it's already .060 over. I have a micrometer on order and that should clear up any guess work.

When I start calling around to junk yards is there any special block numbers which would be preferable for the 350 and 400? I am familiar with the 010 350 block, but what are the other "top choices" or more importantly which block may I want to aviod.

One last question. can the 350 heads I have now also be used on the 400 block?

thanks
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Old 10-11-2003, 12:56 PM
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Yes they can. Just drill the steam holes in them. Check the Knowledge base for how it is done. I just did it with a protractor and a hand drill. Half of the holes are drilled at a 30o angle. Just be carefull.

If you find a 400 this is a killer kit for it. This is the one I used in my engine.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...category=33620
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