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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
alright could someone give me a good breakdown on what camshaft is best used for certain applicaition. like hydraulic roller, hydraulic flat tappet, solid roller, mechanical...ect thanks!!! i have a basic idea of a few but would like to make sure of them :thumbup:
 

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Gearhead177 said:
alright could someone give me a good breakdown on what camshaft is best used for certain applicaition. like hydraulic roller, hydraulic flat tappet, solid roller, mechanical...ect thanks!!! i have a basic idea of a few but would like to make sure of them :thumbup:
Hot Rod mag did an article that might be of some help, it's HERE.

The differences in hydraulic, solid and roller (hydraulic or solid) are generally in how high the engine can be revved in order to make its power.

Most street engines only need hydraulic cams, either flat tappet or roller. Engines needing more power higher in the revs will use a flat tappet solid cam. Engines needing the max amount of power and revs will use a solid roller cam.
 

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cobalt327 said:
Hot Rod mag did an article that might be of some help, it's HERE.

The differences in hydraulic, solid and roller (hydraulic or solid) are generally in how high the engine can be revved in order to make its power.

Most street engines only need hydraulic cams, either flat tappet or roller. Engines needing more power higher in the revs will use a flat tappet solid cam. Engines needing the max amount of power and revs will use a solid roller cam.
It's also a maintenance issue too. Solid lifters, roller or not, will need periodic adjustment.
 

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Money will dictate your cam choice. If funds are unlimited it won't make any difference in the world. To me, a solid roller is for racing, a hydraulic roller is for saying you have a roller, hydraulic flat is for once-n-done mild or grocery getting, and a solid flat is where it's at. A lot of people assume a solid roller will last, but the rollers do fail after x miles and then you have troubles. Usually, a solid roller has pretty high spring pressures, and lots of lift which translates into a highly stressed valvetrain. Even the better or best rollers do not hold up indefinitely for street use, and sometimes, street use is the demise of the solid roller. I am prepared for the assault... LOL
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
alright cool thanks guys. so how much power an how fast can i get in the 1/4 mile using a hyd. flat tappet. just rough estimates. (in a 383) just curious which way to take my truck its 13.0's now an turnin more into a drag truck no daily driving.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
sbc 383 steel crank stock rods far as i know. everything nice an balanced. forged flat top pistons. 2.02/1.60 heads 487 gm casting screw n studs guide plates. lunati hyd. flat tappet .504 lift cam 276 duration. rpm intake holley 750 dp jetted down. i didn build this motor i got it off a good friend for a real cheap price. is there a sure way i can tell if these pistons are forged without pulling them out i got motor out heads an pan off.
 

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When comparing a roller cam with a flat tappet cam, consider this: Because of the design of the roller lifters, the cam lobes on a roller cam can be ground with more aggressive ramps which results in the valves opening quicker. This quickness allows flow to begin earlier and continue longer without having to resort to a longer duration cam to get the same flow. So basically you get more flow with the same .050 duration and we all know how important flow is.

If the same lobes were ground on a flat tappet cam, the edge of the flat tappet lifters would dig into the cam's lobes which will cause instant failure.

As with most things, there are pluses and minuses. Roller cams and lifters are more expensive, especially if the block you're using isn't one designed from the factory to run a roller cam. In cases like that, you'd need a roller cam retro-fit kit and by the time you buy all the parts you'd need, you'll be closing in on $1,000 - cam, lifters, springs, thrust button, Torrington bearing, guide plates and, because roller lifters are taller, shorter, hardened pushrods.

A problem that has surfaced with flat tappet cams is their frequent failure. The research into this shows that the failures are thought to be caused by a change in the formula of the engine oil. An additive package that use to be in dino oil has been dramatically reduced and, as a result, more flat tappet cam failures are occurring. Corvette Action Center's site has a very detailed investigative report on this issue.

Many guys still run flat tappet cams and many race sanctioning bodies don't allow roller cams, but roller cams are at the cutting edge in cam development. Many factory performance engines, like Corvettes, have been coming from the factory with roller cams since 1987.

If your budget can handle it, a roller cam is the way to go. Deciding on which specs to choose in the new roller cam is another can of worms altogether.

Jake

West Point ROCKS!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
alright great thanks that helps! :thumbup: now ive been told before about having a block machined for roller lifters or something of the sort? an the heads for clearence? could someone give me a briefing on this. my heads are 486 casting
 

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Gearhead177 said:
alright great thanks that helps! :thumbup: now ive been told before about having a block machined for roller lifters or something of the sort? an the heads for clearence? could someone give me a briefing on this. my heads are 486 casting
If you don't have a block that came with a roller camshaft you can also use a retro-fit hydraulic roller cam. The parts consist of the hydraulic roller cam, the correct roller lifters, a thrust bumper to control forward movement of the cam in the block and a timing chain set that includes a three piece Torrington bearing and shorter pushrods. The move then becomes a bolt-in swap. This is the method most use. The cost would be right around $1,000 give or take.

Modifying a NON-roller block can be done too. In addition to buying a roller cam and lifters, it'll call for disasembly of the engine and drilling and tapping the block and buying what we call a Spider kit used to hold the lifters in place. By the time you factor in the time, work and expense of going this route, the total cost would probably be more than a retro-fit arrangement.

Going either way will call for compatible valve springs because of the roller cam's needs; higher valve lift, heavier lifters, etc.

The take best advantage of the roller cam, I suggest going with a pair of after-market aluminum heads, like AirFlow Research, Dart, TrickFlows, etc. You could have your stock heads ported and larger valves installed, new springs, etc., but by the time you factor in the cost and time involved, I feel you'd be better off just buying as new set of heads which would come with all the parts and would be ready to bolt on out of the box.

Hope this helps.

Jake

West Point ROCKS!
 
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