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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys Im not to familiar with roller engines but I have a roller block 350 and was wondering do I need the spider in order to use a roller cam and lifters???

Thanks for any help.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
So I can use retro roller lifters with a normal roller cam not a retro cam. After looking at retro lifters they are pretty dam expensive. Seems like it would be just as much or cheaper to buy the spider with roller lifters. What exactly is the purpose of the spider.
 

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WFO
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What about if I used roller lifters (not retro) and used lifter guides like the ones below. Do I still need a spider?

Chevrolet Performance 12595365 Chevrolet Performance Roller Lifter Kit

Chevrolet Performance 88958652
Those guides are only for holding the lifters up out of the way of the cam when swapping cams. They aren't for actually guiding the lifters, the dog bones do that and the spider holds the dog bones in position. The first one isn't for the Gen 1 SBC.
 

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World Famous VF-14
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cobalt , you can use that first one on a 87 and up SBC, it replaced the dog bones, but its really doesn't do much good.
 

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WFO
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The first link is top a guide/holder that bolts up to the LS engine. Where would you bolt it to a Gen 1 SBC? Hopefully SSedan64 will come along any enlighten us on it and the second one, which is for the Gen 1.

My take on it is these are to help facillate cam changes by holding the lifters up away from the cam lobes, not to replace the dog bones.

LS engine


Gen 1 SBC w/guides and dogbones
 

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What about if I used roller lifters (not retro) and used lifter guides like the ones below. Do I still need a spider?

Chevrolet Performance 12595365 Chevrolet Performance Roller Lifter Kit

Chevrolet Performance 88958652
Neither of these are of any use on a Gen I roller. If you're going to install the OEM roller arraingement into a roller block that originally had a flat tappet cam you will need the OEM style lifters, the dog bones that align the OEM style lifters in pairs to the camshaft's direction of rotation, the spider that locates and keeps the dog bones engaged to the lifters, the OEM camshaft thrust plate note that there are two different center to center spacings of the thrust plate retention bolts you need to measure your block to order the correct part and correct pan head bolts to clear the cam gear. Further, the OEM roller cam takes a different timing set, this is usually a single row roller chain, there are differences between what will fit the pre 1996 Vortec and what will fit the 1996 up Vortec. There are some aftermarket twin row roller chain sets, these require a spacer or multiple gasket buildups to get the timing cover to clear the chain and gear depth. The 1996 and up Vortec uses a different and plastic timing cover than the earlier OEM roller engines, these can be interchaged with some minor effort.

Jessel sells a kit that replaces the spider with a stud that passes thorugh the dog bone (a hole that does not exist in the OEM part) which eliminates the spider. Not cheap but effective.

Bogie
 

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World Famous VF-14
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the guides in the second pic are replacing the regular dogbones.. I know i have seen this in either car craft or hotrod...
 

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ChevroletSS,
You might want to look at these part #s at Summit. One is the lifter kit made by Chevy(lifters,lifter retainer,dog bones), the other two are the cam retainer plates. Depends on your block hole spacing as to which you'll need. You could get them out of a salvage yard if you don't mind buying someone elses wear and tear. FWIW
ssmonty

Summit pn NAL-12371042 (lifter kit) $244
Summit pn NAL-1016850 or
Summit pn NAL-10080128 (retainer plates)
 

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WFO
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I stand corrected!

the guides in the second pic are replacing the regular dogbones.. I know i have seen this in either car craft or hotrod...
Looked into this a little more and you are right. I also read of problems when using this set up w/small base circle cams- but that's been an issue w/the dogbones too w/lobes over about 0.354".

First link is to Gen 3/4 parts not applicable to the Gen 1/2 engines AFAIK.

SSedan64 had mentioned on another thread that he had details on installing the second set of parts onto a SBC. Hopefully he'll see this and add something about that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Actually that kit made by chevrolet is all that I need. I just couldnt find a kit like that anywhere for a good price.

Thanks guys.

How much cam can those chevrolet roller lifters handle.
 

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WFO
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Actually that kit made by chevrolet is all that I need. I just couldnt find a kit like that anywhere for a good price.

Thanks guys.

How much cam can those chevrolet roller lifters handle.
Roller Warning
From: Chevy Small Block - Roller Cam - Car Craft Magazine
One area where you must be careful with production-based small-block Chevy hydraulic roller lifters is with high-lift camshafts. According to Crane's Director of Valvetrain Research and Development, Mark Campbell, valve lifts of more than 0.530 inch at the valve with a 1.5:1 rocker can allow the lifter to fall deep enough into the lifter bore (because of the lobe's small base circle) that the steel retainer can lose its grip on the lifter body. This allows the lifter to spin in the bore and destroy the camshaft. In checking a few cam catalogs, it is possible to order a hydraulic roller camshaft with enough lobe lift (in excess of 0.354 inch) to create this situation, so just be careful. This is why Crane created a long-travel hydraulic roller lifter that will allow you to run a high-lift hydraulic roller cam with the stock lifter configuration. These eliminate the problem but are also much more expensive than OE replacement lifters. Another solution would be to run a 1.6:1 rocker ratio with a reduced lobe lift cam to accomplish more valve lift.
 

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WFO
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So what u r saying is with those stock parts a .530 lift cam is as big as I should go. Which thats about where I want to be anyway on my street engine
That's supposedly the max lobe lift w/1.5 rockers, yes. I haven't needed to use that much lobe yet w/the stock set up, so I cannot comment further except to say I would check the amount of engagement between the lifter and d-bone on any cam even approaching that amount of lobe lift just to be sure.

The option of using 1.6 rockers is still there, too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ok can you explain rocker arms to me? What is 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 rockers and what are the differences. Are there others??? I am ging to post another thread on this to so others can comment
 

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WFO
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Ok can you explain rocker arms to me? What is 1.5, 1.6, 1.7 rockers and what are the differences. Are there others??? I am ging to post another thread on this to so others can comment
From here:

The rocker arm is a fulcrum. Its job is to turn the cam lobe's circular rotation into an up and down movement. This is able to be done because the rocker has a pivot point or fulcrum that allows the cam lobe to open the valve.

The rocker arm's pivot point is not in the center of the rocker; instead it is offset more towards the pushrod. The amount of offset is expressed as a ratio (1.5, 1.6, 1.7, etc.)

The stock small-block Chevy rocker arm has a 1.5:1 ratio. These rockers are called 1.5 ratio rockers or just 1.5 rockers for short. This means that the rocker arm tip at the valve end of the rocker moves 1.5 times the amount of movement seen at the pushrod end of the rocker- which is also the same amount as the camshaft's lobe lift.

Let's say your camshaft has 0.350" lobe lift. With a 1.5 rocker, the cam's lobe lift becomes 0.525" lift at the valve (0.350 x 1.5 = 0.525).

The same 0.350" cam lobe using 1.6 rockers would give you 0.560" lift (0.350 x 1.6 = 0.560), w/o having to remove and replace the cam. With the Chevy factory hydraulic roller cam and lifter set up, this will give you more lift before running into problems w/the dogbone retainers losing contact w/the stock lifters.

Changing the rocker ratio will also change the off-the-seat duration seen at the valve a small amount. However, seat-to-seat duration will not change.
 

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Better late than never. :mwink:

Yes the LS guides do work on the GenI Roller & Non-Roller blocks.
Using these with the Spider of course, eliminates hours of grinding/clearancing the Block and Dogbones on Non-Roller blocks which can lead to hitting a water jacket if you're not careful. It still requires some cosmetic cleanup grinding in that area tho'.
I did many Blocks the old way = Grinding :pain: untill I ran across the Composite GenIII Guides. They were pricey when they 1st came out, :( they're cheap now. :) Ahhh! Supply & Demand.

Crane Cams etc.. make OEM style Roller Lifters with extended travel for Cams with more than .354" Lobe Lift. They're expensive tho'. May as well go Retro.

If using an OEM style Roller Cam in a Non-Roller block you can use a moddified Cam Button for fore thrust/clearance and cut the mounting ears off the Cam Retainer Plate so it's used as a spacer for aft thrust/clearance or use the rear Cam Plug. I also machined Four 1/16" deep oil slots 90* apart on the side between the Cam & Retainer for lube.

The last Non-Roller Block I worked, I installed Studs/Nuts w/Loctite to mount the Cam Retainer Plate which negates the need for a Cam Button

There're also several methods for securing the Spider, Studs/Nuts, Springs from a Lifter Valley Baffle etc..

As most of the Retro Roller parts continue to get cheaper it's getting easier to just go with them.
 
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