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cheap 400 I built for a friend. 1978 monte carlo, 20 plus miles to the gallon when right foot is restrained and 14.1 1/4 mile times with 2.73 gears and white wall radials.turbo 350 with shift kit,stock converter.
Bone stock short block rebuilt with cast pistons and static balanced,stock heads.Mild 430 lift flat tappet hydraylic cam,street master manifold, 625 carter carb,1 5/8 primary headers,2 1/2 " dual exhaust not mandrel bent. no where near 400 HP,but a tonne of torque. tire melter
 

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Why in the world would you take a 400 and put a 3" stroke crank in it if you want a lot of torque????? Abosolutely makes no sense and Vinniekg2 ???? the guy said he's on some kind of budget and you're filling his head full of Bill Mitchell block $$$$$. Do some reading Uni and stop dreaming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would jus like a few pointers on 400 builds,I'm not goin to diss anybody's knowledge a lot of people have done a lot of things and I enjoy discussing those times had ,that's how I learn all my knowledge since I started building sbc's and so fare been successful, thanks everybody
 

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if all you are looking for is a 400hp sbc 400 then dont bother with forged internals. if you can find a complete 400 (good luck!), tear it down get what ever machine work needs to be done to the rods, crank, and block done. buy a set of 18cc dished pistons, a mildly price set of 200cc runner/ 72cc combustion chamber steel heads (should put you around 9.4:1). get a hyd f/t cam with somewhere around 220-232° duration at .050, dual plane intake, 50-60k volt cheap HEI distributor, 750 vacuum sec carb, $250.00 set of headman headers, 2.5" exhaust and some decent mufflers. it will want atleast a 3.73 gear in a truck if not a 4.10 and it will probably want around a 2800-3000 stall.

bam! simple 400-430hp (easily) 440-460tq (again easily) motor that will be rather easy on the pocket.
 

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One of our friends has a '78 GMC "short bed" weighing in at 4,100 and change (with him in it), running 12.20s all week on 93. His goal was a mid 12 second pickup. He has Chevy aluminum heads (late '80s Corvette) mildly ported, Comp solid flat tappet (XS274S), 6" rods and SRP pistons. Performer RPM and Hooker... He's VERY happy, and the thing is a beast. It runs well in traffic and gets ABOUT 13-14 MPG on the "open road". 406 CID.

A nice pair of iron heads would actually make more power. This combo seems to have plenty of low-end for driving, and is severely "traction impaired".

I disagree on using stock 400 connecting rods. 5.7 rods are too cheap to ignore, and MUCH better. 6" rods are better, yet. Many pistons available either way. I DO agree, no need for a forged crankshaft as long as you have a genuine Chevrolet nodular casting. We've seen many iissues with the cheap import "cast" cranks (regardless of brand). This is the single small block application we recommend a "high volume" oil pump, due to the size of the main journals (we don't use the HV pump in "race" engines, just street).

FWIW

Jim
 

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i wouldn't use the stock rods either, i was just going off of a bare bones buget build.

if he has the money i would certainly go with a larger rod, and a hyd roller cam
 

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cheap 400 I built for a friend. 1978 monte carlo, 20 plus miles to the gallon when right foot is restrained and 14.1 1/4 mile times with 2.73 gears and white wall radials.turbo 350 with shift kit,stock converter.
Bone stock short block rebuilt with cast pistons and static balanced,stock heads.Mild 430 lift flat tappet hydraylic cam,street master manifold, 625 carter carb,1 5/8 primary headers,2 1/2 " dual exhaust not mandrel bent. no where near 400 HP,but a tonne of torque. tire melter

This sounds awesome. I am building a stock 400 with a 488/510 cam and 2.73 gears and a powerglide. 750 quadrajet aluminum intake stock heads stock bottom. I hope mines sees somewhere in the 15mpg range if my right foor is "restrained".
 
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