Vortec Heads Question - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 01, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
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I keep hearing how wonderful these Vortec heads our. Unfotunatly there is a lot you have to modify to use them in a older 350/400 small blocks (special intake, valve covers, etc.) My guestion is why are the aftermarket head companies not making a vortec like head that will bolt up to the more standard intake and use the regular bolt pattern of the valve covers? I would think there would be a great demain for such a product. Maybe even with the larger 2.02 intake valves?

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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 01, 06:29 PM
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I couldn't find the add in my magazines to make absolutely sure, but I think for about $40 extra you can buy the vortec heads that are tapped for old style heads. If you get into a GM performance parts ad you could check me on this. Like I say I'm pretty sure this is correct.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 01, 09:41 PM
 
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Jim Pace Chevrolet has them tapped for older intakes at $484.28.

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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 01, 09:43 PM
 
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Vortec heads have taller ports than earlier types. Using the older style intake will result in a mismatch.
Edelbrock's E-Tec heads use the vortec style ports and also accept center bolt or standard valve covers.

G.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 01, 10:58 AM Thread Starter
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Arn't the E-tec heads Aluminum? I like the fact that the Vortec heads are Steel. Better durablity. I also heard that the thickness of the head deck was not really thick enough for it to be drilled and tapped for a conventional intake. It can be done, but there are problems making it seal correctly. Also the E-tec heads I bet are quite alot more expensive. Elebrock dosesn't give anything away.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 25th, 01, 04:03 PM
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Yea, your right, I've also heard the heads tapped for older intakes don't seal right, I just figured I would let you know that it could be done. After looking at the extra cost involved I would be more inclined to go with a set of trickflow or edelbrock aluminum heads.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 26th, 01, 09:41 PM
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<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Blk69:
My guestion is why are the aftermarket head companies not making a vortec like head that will bolt up to the more standard intake and use the regular bolt pattern of the valve covers? I would think there would be a great demain for such a product. Maybe even with the larger 2.02 intake valves?
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
The Vortecs are so popular because they are great heads for the price. There are plenty of aftermarket heads that use standard bolt pattern and valve covers. A lot of them outflow the Vortecs, but they all cost more. The cheapest iron aftermarket heads start around $700, and some in this price range dont flow as well. The aftermarket companies cant, or choose not to, offer a head in the Vortec price range(just over 400 bucks).
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 01, 05:03 AM
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I think main reason for such a inexpensive price from GM is that there are used on production line-much greater production quantity compared to any aftermarket head...

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 01, 12:20 PM Thread Starter
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Maybe the aftermarket will get the hint that there is a demain for a vortec like head for less then $500. Does anyone know what engins are receiving the vortec heads now. Possible the junk yards might give up a better price?
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 29th, 01, 01:12 PM
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From personal experience, the vortec heads are great...huge power gain over my previous set of ported 882's...however, heres my thoughts on this. If you are starting out with a stock intake (or plan on stepping up to a better aftermarket intake) and also plan on upgrading the rockers, then the vortecs are a heck of a deal. The $400-450 price is a bit misleading though because you will need a vortec intake ($160-180 for performer/performer rpm), guided rockers ($50 for new gm stockers, $130+ for aftermarket roller tip/full rollers), centerbolt valve covers ($50 for new gm stockers), the special intake gasket ($26...but it is reuseable and is the best intake gasket design I have ever seen for any engine), plus the assorted misc. pieces (intake and valve cover bolts and centerbolt vc gaskets). If you already have a performance intake and some nice stock or aftermarket vc's, then I would look more at an aftermarket head like the trick flows. Besides, if you plan on using a cam over .460 lift, you will need to upgrade the springs on the vortec heads, and the aftermarket heads normally come with good springs. I love the performance of the vortecs, but if I would have investigated a bit more I would have used aftermarket instead.
One other thing...vortec heads are pretty well maxed out from the factory...supposedly they dont respond much to porting or performance valve jobs...so if you plan on building something pretty stout you would probably be better off performance wise to go aftermarket.

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375hp 78 Chevy truck
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95 Chevy Lumina 3.4L
and building a 78 Nova

[This message has been edited by travis (edited 03-29-2001).]
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 29th, 01, 04:11 PM Thread Starter
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That is true Travis. But just where do you stop on engin spending. The aftermarket head performace valves are very misleading. I know exactly what you are talking about not getting the little bit extra. like carb sizes. Do you get one a little bit bigger then you need just incase you upgrade the cam and need it? It is an never ending process. thanks for you input.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 30th, 01, 03:31 AM
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Thats true, the price does add up. They are a great head for those front yard engine builders. Put them on, gain HP and enjoy. I doubt we will see them on many 9 second cars, but that is not what they were designed for. I keep hearing that Edelbrock is making an aluminum verison. If that is true, they might be the ones to wait for.

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Mark

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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 30th, 01, 04:35 AM
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The Edelbrock "E-Tec" heads are out and they are Edelbrock's version of the Vortec. April's CHP magazine does flow tests on both the 170cc runner (1.94/1.55 valves) and 200cc runner version (2.02/1.60 valves). They flow about the same on the intake as the Vortec up to .400 lift (around 223cfm @ .400 lift for both Edelbrock's and standard iron Vortec), but then have good numbers in the .500-.600 lift area. The 200cc head makes something like 265cfm, but all the way up at .6'' valve lift. The exhaust ports on both heads are much better than the cast iron vortec head beating it by around 25cfm at .400 lift. You would need a fairly big cam to take advantage of the higher flow, but they should perform well regardless. I don't know if they would be worth the $1000 price that Sallee Chevy is selling them for unless you have a big cam.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 30th, 01, 07:27 PM
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Where do you stop on spending money on engine building? When the wife says so!

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