383 Stroker-Beginner here - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 29 (permalink) Old May 26th, 15, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Bobby
 
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383 Stroker-Beginner here

Team, need help on buildingwhat will hopefully be my first race engine. I've got my 350 tore down and am fixing to purchase a rotating assembly soon. The assembly I'm going to buy is not going to come with a damper or flywheel (most assemblies don't from what I've seen). How do I know if I need to purchase an internal or external balanced damper/flywheel? Thanks

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #2 of 29 (permalink) Old May 26th, 15, 06:05 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

Think I got it figured out. Post resolved. Thanks However, suggestions on a 383 build are welcome.

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #3 of 29 (permalink) Old May 26th, 15, 06:47 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

I also have a 350 block at my machine shop, and considering going the 383 route using a complete balanced rotating assembly, so I'm very interested in responses here. I think from prior posts, most here and elsewhere consider the SCAT crank assemblies to be superior to the Eagles?

My understanding of the balancing is this: An internally balanced assembly is balanced without the damper or flywheel/flexplate installed. You would get your damper and flywheel independently balanced to use them with it. The advantage being that is for whatever reason you replaced your flywheel or balancer, those new parts would be all that was necessary to be balanced.

If, OTOH, your assembly is balanced with a specific damper and flywheel, (ie. externally balanced) then if you had to replace one of those parts, the new replacement part would have to exhibit the same characteristics of weight/balance as the one being replaced in order to preserve the balance of your entire assembly.

I'm interested in any specific recommendations anyone can make for a 383 rotating assembly. My interest is in a good 'torque' engine for an El Camino, nor for a racing 'horsepower' engine...

Gary
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post #4 of 29 (permalink) Old May 26th, 15, 07:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

Quote:
Originally Posted by 69Z28-RS View Post
I also have a 350 block at my machine shop, and considering going the 383 route using a complete balanced rotating assembly, so I'm very interested in responses here. I think from prior posts, most here and elsewhere consider the SCAT crank assemblies to be superior to the Eagles?

My understanding of the balancing is this: An internally balanced assembly is balanced without the damper or flywheel/flexplate installed. You would get your damper and flywheel independently balanced to use them with it. The advantage being that is for whatever reason you replaced your flywheel or balancer, those new parts would be all that was necessary to be balanced.

If, OTOH, your assembly is balanced with a specific damper and flywheel, (ie. externally balanced) then if you had to replace one of those parts, the new replacement part would have to exhibit the same characteristics of weight/balance as the one being replaced in order to preserve the balance of your entire assembly.

I'm interested in any specific recommendations anyone can make for a 383 rotating assembly. My interest is in a good 'torque' engine for an El Camino, nor for a racing 'horsepower' engine...
-I've heard to stay away from Eagle's Cast Crank. Better to go with Forged.

-Jegs told me if I'm going to run over 7000 RPMs, go Internal. Less than that, go External. Though the rep did say he knew guys running over 7000 with no problem using external. I'm probably going to go external because I don't see myself pushing over that kind of RPMs on the drag track.

-I too am welcome to anyone's thought's and perspectives for racing hp engine.

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #5 of 29 (permalink) Old May 26th, 15, 09:14 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

The 383 is essentially a 350 bored .030" over with a 400 smallblock 3.75" stroke crank. 400 small blocks were 'externally balanced', meaning they used a flywheel/flexplate with weights added to it and also a specific weighted harmonic balancer. You cannot use a 350/327/305 flexplate/flywheel or balancer with a external balance 400 (or 383 with 400 crank).

This is no big deal for relatively stock applications where the stock balancer and flexplate are ok, although you cannot re-use your balancer and flywheel from your 350, you will need a balancer & flywheel from a 400 if you have an external balanced crank. So with this, you can see there are additional budgetary implications that you may want to look at.

For high performance & racing applications, you may want a trick balancer like a fluidamper or something else, and possibly a lightened flywheel. You may have greater selection of parts if you have an 'internally balanced' roatating assembly and therefore do not need the special weighted parts. With internally balanced assemblies, you can use the damper and flywheel from a 350, and you don't need to worry about it. However, internally balanced assemblies are usually more expensive, so this is obviously a trade-off.

In any event, if this is a 'race engine', and you plan on winding it to high revs, you should have a competent machinist balance all the rotating parts together, including damper and flywheel, even if you buy the 'internally balanced' assembly, have your machinist check it and re-balance it. You really do not know who balanced this or to what standards or tolerances it was balanced to. A proper precision balance job in a high performance or competition engine is very important.

I urge you to first shop for a machinist, before buying any parts at all!! Then work closely with your machinist to determine what your goals are and the best way you and he can work together to meet those goals within whatever you budget is.

Another question on my mind is, why not just build a 400 small block? I can understand wanting to stay small block for the luxury of having cheap speed parts, but you're talking about racing a chevelle, which is considerably heavier than a camaro, so you will definitely need all the help you can to go fast (more cubes to get heavy metal moving). Other than the initial cost of the block, everything else will be the same price, but you will end up making 20 more HP and ft-lbs all through the power band than a 383 thanks to the increased displacement of the 400. If you are racing, then why are you leaving 20+ cubic inches on the table by limiting yourself to a 350 block with only a 4" bore? People say the 400 SBC is scarce and becoming hard to find, but I still see them all the time on craigslist. I own three of them!

The important thing here is that you ask me what kind of car I've got. "I've got a BITCHIN' CAMARO"
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Last edited by kookykrispy; May 26th, 15 at 09:30 PM.
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post #6 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
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Bobby
 
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

I thought about the weight of the Chevelle in relation to engine. I figured if I was going to race 1/4 mile then I'd need more than a 383. I'm only going to race 1/8 mile and its more about the fun for me as opposed to winning. I've already got the 350 block and its already bored .030. Plus its sentimental to me as it was the first block I ever built (20 yrs ago) and went in the first car I ever owned, the Chevelle. Around 2000 I parked it and now 15 years later am coming back to it.

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #7 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
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Bobby
 
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

Quote:
Originally Posted by kookykrispy View Post
The 383 is essentially a 350 bored .030" over with a 400 smallblock 3.75" stroke crank. 400 small blocks were 'externally balanced', meaning they used a flywheel/flexplate with weights added to it and also a specific weighted harmonic balancer. You cannot use a 350/327/305 flexplate/flywheel or balancer with a external balance 400 (or 383 with 400 crank).

This is no big deal for relatively stock applications where the stock balancer and flexplate are ok, although you cannot re-use your balancer and flywheel from your 350, you will need a balancer & flywheel from a 400 if you have an external balanced crank. So with this, you can see there are additional budgetary implications that you may want to look at.

For high performance & racing applications, you may want a trick balancer like a fluidamper or something else, and possibly a lightened flywheel. You may have greater selection of parts if you have an 'internally balanced' roatating assembly and therefore do not need the special weighted parts. With internally balanced assemblies, you can use the damper and flywheel from a 350, and you don't need to worry about it. However, internally balanced assemblies are usually more expensive, so this is obviously a trade-off.

In any event, if this is a 'race engine', and you plan on winding it to high revs, you should have a competent machinist balance all the rotating parts together, including damper and flywheel, even if you buy the 'internally balanced' assembly, have your machinist check it and re-balance it. You really do not know who balanced this or to what standards or tolerances it was balanced to. A proper precision balance job in a high performance or competition engine is very important.

I urge you to first shop for a machinist, before buying any parts at all!! Then work closely with your machinist to determine what your goals are and the best way you and he can work together to meet those goals within whatever you budget is.

Another question on my mind is, why not just build a 400 small block? I can understand wanting to stay small block for the luxury of having cheap speed parts, but you're talking about racing a chevelle, which is considerably heavier than a camaro, so you will definitely need all the help you can to go fast (more cubes to get heavy metal moving). Other than the initial cost of the block, everything else will be the same price, but you will end up making 20 more HP and ft-lbs all through the power band than a 383 thanks to the increased displacement of the 400. If you are racing, then why are you leaving 20+ cubic inches on the table by limiting yourself to a 350 block with only a 4" bore? People say the 400 SBC is scarce and becoming hard to find, but I still see them all the time on craigslist. I own three of them!
KookyKrispy thank you for the information. So either way I go, you recommend I work with a machinest to get the balance right. Got it. I did not know I could use 350 damper and flywheel on internal balanced crank so thanks for letting me know. Also, aside from money and maybe more selection options, is one better over the other? In essence, if I go over 7000 RPMs, will an external balance serve me just as good? Thanks,

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #8 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 05:17 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

If I'm reading this right rdobbs1977 your using a previously bored block. I would be concerned about piston to wall clearance. I would have your machine shop clean and check the cylinder walls for wear before I bought any parts. The block is going to need clearanced for the crank and rods near the pan rail. Are you going to run 5.7 or 6.0 rods?

Just my 2 cents

Last edited by 69z28302; May 27th, 15 at 05:20 PM. Reason: ????
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post #9 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 06:08 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

If you're planning to turn over 7.000 rpm you better get your wallet out. I run a 551 hp 383 small block, but it takes a lot of specialized and expensive parts to get there and balance will be critical. I do run a fluiddamper on mine and had all internal parts balanced. I have my MSD set to 6600 rpm as my peak hp on the dyno was at 6400. I use short travel hydraulic roller lifters to get even to there consistently along with AFR 210 heads with true roller rockers. I completely agree you need a competent machine shop before finalizing your plans. Once you start with higher hp, you're going to have to upgrade to forged pistons, specialized rings, 6" rods etc.... Ever thought of buying a 383 crate motor with the 2 year warranty? Not too expensive and puts out 425 hp.
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post #10 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

Quote:
Originally Posted by 69z28302 View Post
If I'm reading this right rdobbs1977 your using a previously bored block. I would be concerned about piston to wall clearance. I would have your machine shop clean and check the cylinder walls for wear before I bought any parts. The block is going to need clearanced for the crank and rods near the pan rail. Are you going to run 5.7 or 6.0 rods?

Just my 2 cents
I've been told 6.0 rods are the way to go. I'd speculate, if memory serves me correct, block should not have more than 10,000 miles on it when I rebuilt it 20 years ago. Everyone is saying to get with a machine shop, so I emailed my dad (retired ex racer/hotrodder among other things) to see if he could stop by on his morning run for coffee to pick their brain. He built a 383 25 years ago, but his memory is hazy on the particulars since it was so long ago. Now when you say 'block will need to be clearanced' can you expound on that for me. I figured going to a 7qt oil pan would eliminate concerns for me, but I'm a beginner going into a race build. Thanks 69Z

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
1972 Camaro, Full Drag Car
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post #11 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 07:00 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

Quote:
Originally Posted by bill3337 View Post
If you're planning to turn over 7.000 rpm you better get your wallet out. I run a 551 hp 383 small block, but it takes a lot of specialized and expensive parts to get there and balance will be critical. I do run a fluiddamper on mine and had all internal parts balanced. I have my MSD set to 6600 rpm as my peak hp on the dyno was at 6400. I use short travel hydraulic roller lifters to get even to there consistently along with AFR 210 heads with true roller rockers. I completely agree you need a competent machine shop before finalizing your plans. Once you start with higher hp, you're going to have to upgrade to forged pistons, specialized rings, 6" rods etc.... Ever thought of buying a 383 crate motor with the 2 year warranty? Not too expensive and puts out 425 hp.
Yeah, I've done told my wife we are fixing to spend a lot of money. Told her let me build the engine first, and I won't touch car itself until first of next year. I agree, I could probably get buy cheaper just buying engine already assembled but I want to spend time with my Dad as he's 71 years old and loves this stuff. Plus its a good learning experience for me. I plan on getting forged pistons and 6" rods. A member on here who really seems to know his stuff said go with flat top pistons unless I want to spend money on race fuel (which I don't). Plus I don't want to get over 10 on piston compression. What's your take? Also, do I need to spend the money on a forged crankshaft or could I do with cast?

1976 Camaro, M20 Muncie 4 Speed, Hurst equipped
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post #12 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 07:17 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

I have a 383 engine in my 74 nova and its a great motor. The first thing is you need a plan on what you are going to use this car for. That being said even a really nice street motor will do well on a race track.
I agree with doing research on this motor. It will be externally balanced using a 400 dampner and flex plate. The money should be spent on good set of cylinder heads. The key is the sum of all the parts on your car have to work together. Buy the best parts you can afford. Build car, drive car and have fun.

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post #13 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 07:19 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

just for the record, I'm 67.......the bug for hp never leaves you, sounds like your dad is the same. I bought my '67 RS/SS new and still have it, although my stroker engine is in my '33 Ford. I run a 350 in my Camaro with original heads, ported and polished a 280 Isky cam, Edelbrock torquer II intake, holley 600 cfm carb, HEI ignition (so really a fairly mild street motor) but it gives all the excitement you'll need. I do have higher compression at 10.75 and with iron heads I have to run 94 Octane. Unless you're really desperate for a high horsepower motor (that get's poor mileage) I'd stay fairly mild. I haven't had my Camaro on the dyno, but I can run high 12's in the quarter and it doesn't have enough power to destroy the rest of the running gear. I do run a forged crank in the stroker, but I think a cast steel crank is ok up to 400-425 hp staying under 6000 RPM.
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post #14 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 07:42 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

I built my 383 about a year ago using a 4 bolt main 350 block, a complete Scat forged rotating assy with 5.7" rods and flat pistons internal balance. I know that the 6" rods move the wrist pin up in the piston to where the pin actually intrudes on the oil ring grove which also requires a shorter piston skirt. The net result is a shorter piston that has a greater tendency to rock in the cylinder bore. I'm running a Fluidamper and Hays aluminum flywheel both neutral balance. RHS 210cc runner aluminum heads, Edelbrock hydraulic roller cam/lifters with Edelbrock Victor Jr intake and MSD EFI. It made 532hp on the engine dyno. I have my rev limiter set to 6500 per the machine shops recommendation.

Speed has never killed anyone. Suddenly becoming stationary, that's what gets you! Jeremy Clarkson


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post #15 of 29 (permalink) Old May 27th, 15, 11:28 PM
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Re: 383 Stroker-Beginner here

I called Scat with all the info of my 421 build,they gave me a part number for an internal balance rotating package that I purchased from Summit(free shipping) then I called ATI for their damper recommendation, and then McLeod for flywheel and clutch recommendation.
I feel confident that I got the right parts by calling the guys direct.

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421" Dart SHP block
TKO 600 RR
Dutchman 9" w/3.70 US Gear Lightning r&p
Speedtech torque arm,Ridetech HQ coilovers
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