will my trw 350 pistons work in my 383 project - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 09-03-2008, 06:50 PM
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will my trw 350 pistons work in my 383 project

I just recently purchased a set of trw forged pistons 350..030 ,they have a slight dish and claim to give 9.7 with 64 cc heads, since buying them I came across a great deal on a 400 crank and heard I may be able to still use these pistons..does anyone know if I will have clearance issues with these pistons or with my solid lifter camshaft which is not too radical at all with my rods anywhere???? also if anyone needs a alky carb I have a 750 for 200.00 or will trade for parts I still need.
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Old 09-03-2008, 06:55 PM
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If you want to use a 350 piston with a 400crank you need to use the short 5.565" 400 rods.
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Old 09-03-2008, 07:35 PM
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ok ..but!

I know the stock 400 rods are weaker than the 350 rods and I thought I heard of the block being decked in order to use the 350 rods and pistons, I would rather sell my trw pistons than go to a weaker rod...Is there a way to use the 350 pistons and 350 rods with the 400 crank or am I just dreaming????
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Old 09-03-2008, 07:57 PM
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First off has the 400 crank been ground for the 350 mains?


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Originally Posted by robintopeka
I just recently purchased a set of trw forged pistons 350..030 ,they have a slight dish and claim to give 9.7 with 64 cc heads, since buying them I came across a great deal on a 400 crank and heard I may be able to still use these pistons..does anyone know if I will have clearance issues with these pistons or with my solid lifter camshaft which is not too radical at all with my rods anywhere???? also if anyone needs a alky carb I have a 750 for 200.00 or will trade for parts I still need.
Thanks to all !
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Old 09-03-2008, 09:48 PM
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not yet..but I knew I would have to have it turned down to 350 size and have the block ground down by the pan rail area for clearance and I heard they had a special rod bolt with a smaller head to use for better clearance that I planned on buying...
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Old 09-04-2008, 09:32 AM
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The 400 rod is weaker, But in a street application under 6500rpm they are fine. stock 5.7 rod is good to 7500 or so with a 3.75 crank. I know this from years of destructive testing otherwise known as dirt track racing with claimer engines.
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Old 09-04-2008, 09:42 AM
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Why not forget about the stroker crank and build a 350 that eats 383's for a snack? Just cause its "a good deal" doesn;t mean its right for you.
400rods are not weaker than stock 350 rods. They are just shorter.
Once you replace the rod bolts with new arp bolts and get them rebuilt/resized, a 400 rod will work very well for a street motor to 6000rpm. would require rebalancing the crank and turning the mains down to 350 journal dimention ( which weakens the 400crank)

build the 350 as a 350. Use the 3.75" 400 crank in a 400 block and build a real motor.
(406ci) (with 5.7" 350 rods)
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:45 AM
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thanks to all for the advice

Well, I don't know what I am going to do now..I did find a 400 4 bolt block for 100.00 and am going to buy it tonight, I do have the 350 4 bolt block 350 crank and trw pistons and pink rods , I always heard the 400 block had overheating problems and I thought that was why people starting making the 383 years ago to start with, If the 400 rod is only good to 6000 rpm...I would call that weaker,not just shorter.. and I appreciate everybodys help and advice here..one thing for sure ,just because something is a good price does not mean it is right for me...Here is a question for you all...If I took the money I would be spending to turn the crank and clearance the block for the 383 and just put that money in the 355 instead would I be happier??? I would still have my 400 block and crank to possibly build a 406 at another time...what do you think????
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Old 09-05-2008, 04:36 PM
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Well if I was you I would just build a 355 and be done with it. The only real difference that is important wise is that a 383 will give an average of 30 more pounds of torque and the power band if slightly different then a 350. The horse power number will only be different by about 10 or less nothing big to me. I did have a 383 stroker before my current 350 build and I only noticed slight differences in output.

My previous build was a 383 4 bolt 9:8to 1 with 400 crank and rods. The same pistons you have and a set of Dart iron eagle 200cc ported heads and a crane energizer 302h cam flat tappet with a dual plane intake by weiand. I switched the intake to a edelbrock rpm performer with a crane powermax hydraullic roller cam and went back to a 350 with the same heads and had them milled down for more compressiona and now sit around 9:4 to 1 and it shreds the tires on my s-10 and will still throw you back in the seat.

You can build a 383 and a 350 really well both ways just a little bit difference in torque and power band wise between the two. If I am wrong somebody help me out here.
Eric
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Old 09-05-2008, 05:01 PM
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If I took the money I would be spending to turn the crank and clearance the block for the 383 and just put that money in the 355 instead would I be happier??? I would still have my 400 block and crank to possibly build a 406 at another time...what do you think????
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Yes you'll be very happy with a well built 355. And you'll really like the 406.
Build that one with longer 5.7 rods though.

400's a re no more likely to havea cooling issue than a 350 or other SBC.
The reputation is largely undeserved, from the dark days of the 70's smog era and lack of general engine/radiator maintance.
I have a 406 now and have had others in the past and have never had a cooling problem. useing a 350 head or a aftermarket head requires drilling the 400 steam holes in the decks of the heads. I have a cool simple cooling system modification that helps 400's and any other SBC cool better as a whole. I did not drill the steam holes in my heads and mine is fine even on very hot days. You can do this simple cooling system modification (heater hose bypass reroute) to any SBC intake manifold that has the extra water ports at the back by the distributor. Hook the water pump heater hose outlet (top of the water pump) to the drivers side rear water port at the back of the intake manifold.

You need a good radiator+ full fan shroud and a clutch type engine driven HD GM cooling fan and the right fan drive pulleys as you would on any big 400ci V8 motor.
Most of the pretty aftermarket hot rod fans are not very efficient.
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Old 09-05-2008, 05:27 PM
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[Thank you all for your help and advice....I spent much of the day thinking about it and then read some of your replies here tonight also and I am going to build the 355 and put the 400 block and crank to the side for the time being while keeping my eye out on e-bay and other bulletin boards for a good used set of 406 pistons and worked rods at a good price for the future...I just heard about a 72 monte carlo 350/300 horse 12 bolt that was sold for scrap to settle a estate here...I know the guy that bought it and am going to look at soon, I will fill everyone in on whether or not I get it and include a few pic's,hope everybody has a good weekend!
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