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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been trying to ID my engine for part replacement reasons. I was told it is a 454 by the seller but some parts don't make sense. I'll post the pics of the numbers I've been able to find.

From the front at the water pump. It looks like there are other smaller stampings but I can't make them out. One over the last 5 numbers of the obvious one and I swear I see like 2 different lines below the obvious. Maybe my eyes are playing tricks on me? I'm not putting my thought on what that number is because I think it's crappy casting and very deceiving but you guys that have seen these numbers may have a different take and I don't want to influence you. I have different angles if you need more. There's definately something in the lower left corner. I think it's a GM T.
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I think I got this one from around the back of the carb on the passenger's side it's in a mirror.

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Then there is this one which is like a screw pointing on a clock. Again, I swear I see other numbers/letters above it, like 2 lines.

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Thanks in advance.
 

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Start with the block casing number
 

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We'll need the block casting date, block casting number, and the assembly code stamped on the RH block pad to definitively ID the engine. Lots of parts couple have been changed over the years, but that will tell what the block started life as. See here:
 

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You need to start with the block casting number. About halfway down this page will show you where it is on the back side of the engine. Also, see if you can resize your pictures a little smaller.

 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
We'll need the block casting date, block casting number, and the assembly code stamped on the RH block pad to definitively ID the engine. Lots of parts couple have been changed over the years, but that will tell what the block started life as. See here:
Yeah, including the engine. It was born as a 350 sb and then supposedly converted too a 454 bb. I've been over the car multiple times and what I got is what I've been able to find. The only others are those under the valve covers. Which I / post. I'll take a look at you r instructions but I'm gone to the places were others suggested. The back of the block passenger's side and at the
water pump and supposedly at the drivers side or the passenger's side
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Your write-up on where to find numbers doesn't seem to deal with 454's because Camaros didn't have 454's. and it seems to be based on the year of the car. An engine swap isn't going to be ID'd like that. Since I don't know either the year of the engine or what it came from I can't follow those instructions. I gave you the numbers I've been able to find. If you think there's some number at a specific place tell me where and preferably show me a picture of what I'm looking for and I will look again but I've not uncovered anything new in multiple attempts.
 

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Your write-up on where to find numbers doesn't seem to deal with 454's because Camaros didn't have 454's. and it seems to be based on the year of the car.
The number locations in that link aren't specific to just Camaros, it is good for all/any engine from that era.
 

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The number that you show is on the water pump. That will not tell you anything. The block casting number will tell you at least what the basic block is. Like mayor said those numbers are not specific to any particular car. They apply to all Chevy engines. The number that is stamped in the pad at the front of the engine will be the only one that can tell you exactly what the engine was when it was originally built. You might have to pull some accessories off to clean that pad off if it is really rusted up.

In the three pictures below you will see the casting number 3999289 which tells me it is a 454 block from 71 to 79 The stamped number ends in TRH which tells me it was in a truck from either 73,74,78 or 80 and the date code H 7 73 tells me the block was cast on Aug 7 1973. So using all of these numbers I pretty much know that this is a block out of a late 73 or early 74 Chevy truck.

Those are the numbers you need if you want to ID the engine as it was originally built.

454 289 casting number.jpg 454 block date.jpg 454 TRH stamping.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The number that you show is on the water pump. That will not tell you anything. The block casting number will tell you at least what the basic block is. Like mayor said those numbers are not specific to any particular car. They apply to all Chevy engines. The number that is stamped in the pad at the front of the engine will be the only one that can tell you exactly what the engine was when it was originally built. You might have to pull some accessories off to clean that pad off if it is really rusted up.

In the three pictures below you will see the casting number 3999289 which tells me it is a 454 block from 71 to 79 The stamped number ends in TRH which tells me it was in a truck from either 73,74,78 or 80 and the date code H 7 73 tells me the block was cast on Aug 7 1973. So using all of these numbers I pretty much know that this is a block out of a late 73 or early 74 Chevy truck.

Those are the numbers you need if you want to ID the engine as it was originally built.

View attachment 278938 View attachment 278939 View attachment 278940
I just want to know what engine I have. It would be interesting but not material to know what it used to be. I need to know what it is now. I've looked through that link and I still don't see anything but a single picture regarding bb's but since all the other documents, tables, etc all say 67, 68, 69 I don't see how there's any info there for an engine from a '72 vette. Even casting numbers are listed as 67, 68, 69 and only Camaros. I've shown the GM stamp in my images maybe there's a further number below it but I've not seen one. My engine has been painted so maybe the paints just too thick to see the other casting number. I will look again. The 2nd image you're showing I have no idea where you're showing me but it looks like the number in my image with the orange paint. The last an final image is essentially with the engine torn apart. My engine is not torn apart.
 

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cityguy, I dont think you understand. The number that you posted looks like it is on the water pump, which means nothing. Without the numbers in the locations that I show and in Bob15's picture you will never know what you have period. Yes my picture is of a disassembled engine but that is just to show you where the numers are that you are looking for. They will still be in the same place when the engine is assembled and you will be able to see tham but yes you might have to clean off some of the 50 year old paint to get to them.

Also, if you engine has ever been taken apart and modified in any way there is absolutely no way to know what is in it now other than taking it apart and looking.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yeah, I do understand. What I know is that it's a BB. I don't suspect that it was messed with internally of course I don't know for absolute but there's not a lot of evidence elsewhere to suggest any major changes. What I was sold was a 454. That number in the mirror, K813 or at least that's how I read it, seems to suggest it's a Chevelle 396. That's the only number that I've been able to find in documentation on other sites if I'm deciphering it correctly. That other number came from the bottom of the water pump it was the only number I could find anywhere on the front of the engine and one of the sites said I would find it around the water pump. Not able to find anything else I got what I could find. But I can't even find that number in a list of water pump parts if I'm even able to decipher the "numbers". At first it seemed obvious but then when you look at it from various angles it looks like different numbers or letters.

I moved the alternator today and found a GM stamp but I can't read anything past the GM. It looks like it's been purposely destroyed but it does look like it was once something. The picture that you showed of the entire block for small and bb's I have right beside me. That ledge in the front is smooth as a baby's butt. I don't see anything on it but below that there's the spot where I found this unreadable blob. On the left, partially covered by the shadow it says GM but what is to the right not a clue. I can see a 3 in the top row towards the end but that's all I can make out.

279029
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·

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The area you have circled above that ledge is the cylinder head, and shouldn't be anything stamped there from the factory. That ledge is where the assembly code should have been stamped. If it is missing, the block has probably been decked. Even if you do find all the numbers we need, it might not be a 454 anymore. If you run all the numbers on the block in my car, it started life as a 454. When I rebuilt it, I used a 396 crank to make a 427 out of it. Point being.... without pulling a head and measuring the bore and stroke, you will not know 100% what it is, only what it was.
 

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Cityguy,
The easiest numbers to see should be the ones at the back of the block. They will tell you what the basic block is. That is the number in the first picture in my earlier reply. It is the one shown as "block casting number" in Bob15's reply. Why dont you concentrate on cleaning that area and getting that number. It really should not be that hard to see.

Once again, the water pump number meand absolutely nothing. Its a 45 year old engine and chances are pretty good that it has had a water pump replaced somewhere during those years.
 

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Also, How about posting a few pictures form further away showing the entire engine from a couple of angles. Might be some other clues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
The area you have circled above that ledge is the cylinder head, and shouldn't be anything stamped there from the factory. That ledge is where the assembly code should have been stamped. If it is missing, the block has probably been decked. Even if you do find all the numbers we need, it might not be a 454 anymore. If you run all the numbers on the block in my car, it started life as a 454. When I rebuilt it, I used a 396 crank to make a 427 out of it. Point being.... without pulling a head and measuring the bore and stroke, you will not know 100% what it is, only what it was.
No way to measure through the spark plug hole?

Do you not like the K813, as I read it, number I have in the mirror from the back of the engine?

I'll re-check the ledge and I'll post some other photos of the engine. It's largely unmodified other than a dress-up kit which I had to toss the valve covers from because they had somehow had their baffles ripped from the covers. I replaced the transmission and put new valve covers on, added A/C, power steering, moved the battery to the trunk to help cut wheel-hop an front disc brakes, added a Pretonix II module, replaced the steering "dinged" headers, ,replaced the front sway bar which may have been a mistake and relocated the engine to it's proper mounts.

I think that guy that sold it to me either swapped the engine or he bought it from the guy that swapped it and I think he sold it because the engine was not using the correct mounts and the transmission wasn't correct causing reverse to be an impossibility. It still had the 37 amp alternator when I got it now replaced with 100 amp. I also had to replace the rotten radiator with an aluminum radiator which came with a free electric fan which is going to have be replaced with a dual fan or go back to the stock mechanical fan as it doesn't cool. I also put a serpentine drive setup on.
 

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The K813 is only a date code. It could be on any engine. And it really is probably K 8 - 3 November 8, 1973 or 83. I think the "1" is just a casting flaw because there would not be a year code of "13"
The long number is what will tell you what the actual block is.
 
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