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Old 08-07-2005, 08:46 AM
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why the steam holes?

stupid question but why does a 400 need steam holes and a 383 does not?

is it just something with the 400 block casting?

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Old 08-07-2005, 08:48 AM
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The 400's bore is bigger and needs those steamholes to be drilled to keep from overheating because it doesn't have as many passages for coolant whereas a 383 is made from 350 block that has more.


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Old 08-07-2005, 10:59 PM
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It also has to do with the 400's 4.125 bore while a 350 will have a 4" bore. The 4" bore allows for coolant holes to be between the cylinders while a 4.125" bore will not. A 383 is a 350 block with a 400 crank hence does not need the steam holes.
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Old 08-07-2005, 11:23 PM
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400 Chevys

To aid water circulation at low engine speeds and vent steam pockets on the siamesed cylinder-wall 400 block, stock 400 heads have six steam holes (arrows) that align with corresponding holes in the block deck surface. Add these holes to non-400 heads and head gaskets unless the engine will operate primarily above 3,500 rpm.

Does anyone run a Pontiac 400
Is it the same
as Chevy 400

Last edited by BigDawgsEatFirst; 08-07-2005 at 11:33 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 08-07-2005, 11:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDawgsEatFirst
To aid water circulation at low engine speeds and vent steam pockets on the siamesed cylinder-wall 400 block, stock 400 heads have six steam holes (arrows) that align with corresponding holes in the block deck surface. Add these holes to non-400 heads and head gaskets unless the engine will operate primarily above 3,500 rpm.

Does anyone run a Pontiac 400
Is it the same
as Chevy 400
That was from carcraft website
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Old 08-08-2005, 01:27 AM
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The 400 sb has fins cast in between the cylinders on the water side. These fins do not allow water to circulate between the cylinders. They are there to strengthen the block because of the larger bore. Because the cylinders angle outwards. Water gets trapped near the top of the cylinder on the lower side and boils off into steam. Holes were drilled into the top of the block and into the heads to allow the steam to escape into the heads. Thus keeping the tops of the cylinders cool. When using non-400 heads, you only need to drill the lower 3 holes. In fact Edelbrock recommends you only drill three holes not six. The upper 3 holes are not really necessary and run very tight between the intake runners. If you drill the hole the slightest bit off you will drill into the intake runner.
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