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Spaceman
01-17-2008, 11:58 PM
I'm looking to get a Chevy 350 for the up and comming project. All my experience is from the firewall back in cars and trucks (interiors, paint, body electrical and welding). For some of you engines are your speciality. After looking around I have no idea where to start, so my question is: what year(s) engine block would be my best bet in terms of parts, options, reputation and semi-idiot proof for a novice mechanic. Thanx. Michael

Lee in KC
01-18-2008, 09:56 AM
There are some pretty good deals on crate motors out there. Unless you really want to do the work yourself for learning and gratification, you could probably get a crate motor for about what you would spend on a good core, machining and decent parts.

Another option is a long block. All of the close-tolerance stuff will be done for you, so no need to acquire specialty tools and specialty knowledge. That is the way I went. I got a race-prepped 4-bolt .030-over 350 block, forged crank, rods and pistons, Sportsman II heads completely built-up with some nice valves & springs, Comp hydraulic roller cam & lifters, and full double-roller timing chain, all assembled by a shop that specializes in street rod and circle-track motors, for $3200, delivered. That was less than if I had bought all the parts from Summit and built it myself. Mine was more expensive than his base-line long block ($1800) because mine is set up for a blower and I chose a beefier bottom-end.

There are many how-to books and videos out there on selecting and rebuilding 350s. Just go to your local Borders or Barnes & Noble and I bet they'll have a half-dozen right there on the shelf.

Here is the best on-line technical forum on hot-rodding I have found...http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/

mdanielson55
01-18-2008, 07:56 PM
ON PC CONTACT CITY MOTOR SUPPLY.com 350 short block about 400bucks and a long block about 700 and for 1900 u can get a super running performance engine. mike

Spaceman
01-20-2008, 03:10 PM
Thanx for the input guys. After a little more research I started finding out what the differences between Gen I, II, III etc. The litlte woman is already wanting an engine manual to start learnign more about them and any speciality tools she may need. (Yes I'm lucky, this project was her idea.) It will be a slow start but once the parts start to accumilate and some progress is made I'll start a gallery so you can all have a good laugh or two and keep an eye on my minor mistakes. Michael

LumenAl
01-21-2008, 03:33 AM
Really depends on what you want out of the motor... stock... higher performance... big power and blower? If you want reliable street motor, then crate motor is the way to go... warranty, reliable as all get out, and cheaper than you can do on your own. My 327 cost a lot more to build than a crate motor would have cost, but I wanted my 327 with some grunt, and I wanted to keep my camelback heads... so I had everything machined, balanced, upgraded etc. Also keep in mind that SBC are very common and some folks will pay extra for Ford or Mopar...

terrymetal
02-19-2008, 11:06 PM
I have built alot of engines over the years. What it boils down to is How Much Do You Want To Spend!!!!! High quality hi-po engines are expensive, and you need to decide what you are gonna use the car for......if its mostly for show and go then a crate motor is an excellent choice....If its gonna see some drag strip time...You still have plenty of choices just shop around.....For a novice building one from the ground up. A chevy makes a good choice because of availability and the parts are a bit cheaper than other brands.....Either way you choose Good Luck!!!