400 Smallblock ??? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 05, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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400 Smallblock ???

I have a #509-400 standard bore 010-020 block that I am thinking of building a different kind of engine and I would like to get your ideas on a few things.First of all I don't want to bore the block and I am thinking of using a forged 350 crank with the adapter bearings,forged 5.7" rods,and forged pistons for the standard 400.A good timing chain and gears ,I am not sure about the cam but I wan't the engine trun at about 6200-6500 max.,maybe you can give me some kind of an idea on the type and grinde of cam I should use.The next thing is the heads,I have a set of 186's that I am changing to 202's and an edelbrock Victor Jr intake and maybe a 650 or a 750 Holley with a Mallory unalite Dist,coil and wires,with a 350 turbo an 8.5" 3.42 Posi ,What kind of combo do you think I can count on,,,,Thanks Camaro BOB
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 05, 06:28 PM
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Re: 400 Smallblock ???

Well lets see, you have a 400 and want to turn it into a 377. While the 377 engines can be great for certain applications. They are typically built as high winding engines, seeing you want to limit the RPM to 6200-6500 you are kind of taking away what the engine is best at (IMO).

Why not just build a 400? You will have more torque and won't need to RPM it to make power. Perfect for your 6200-6500 RPM limit.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 05, 08:01 PM
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Re: 400 Smallblock ???

Keep the cubes, don't give up the torque advantage of the 3.75" arm. If I were you, I'd really think hard about getting what I could out of those head castings and pick up some inexpensive aftermarket heads or even a set of Vortecs. Run a hydraulic roller in the 230 - 240 range with about .575 lift with an Air Gap intake and a 750dp and you won't be able to keep it straight at anything less than a 30mph punch.
By the way, the 509 010/020 is supposed to be the holy grail of 400 blocks - I have one that torque plate honed to .040 that I was kinda thinking of putting in a glass case in the living room. I'm sure you already know about the extra nickle and tin but the pan rails are also wider than other castings which gives you extra room to clearance a slightly longer crank. There will never be any more of those blocks, make sure you get top notch machine work and buy good parts. Good luck with your build!

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 05, 08:25 PM
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Re: 400 Smallblock ???

a buddy of mine built a 377 for dirt track use, good motor. but there is no replacement for displacement I would just build the 400.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 05, 07:24 PM
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Re: 400 Smallblock ???

My friend has a 400 in a 79 Camaro. It has Dart 215 Pro One heads, 11.5 compression and a [email protected] hydraulic cam. It's backed by a 4 speed and 4.56 gears. Also with a Team G intake and 750 Holley. This thing flat out hauls! It'll seriously pin you back in any gear and will scream all the way up to 7000 rpm's. That's where he let off but it had not nosed over yet.Every one says that 400's won't rev untill they ride ithis car.On the street he stars out in third and short shifts to fourth and youd never know it wasn't in first, gotta love that torque.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 16th, 05, 03:07 PM
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Cool Re: 400 Smallblock ???

I agree with the others keep the cubes. THe torque difference is very noticeable in the seat of your pants versus a 377. My 409 is a stroked 400 bored .020. I ran smaller cube small blocks for years, won't go back.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Dec 16th, 05, 03:32 PM
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Re: 400 Smallblock ???

I'll chime in as a "go" vote for the 400, too!
Back when I built mine, 1980 or so, the "bad perception" on these was so strong they were worth nothing, payed $50 for my shortblock! Damned thing ran like a raped ape for years and years....

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