building a dream or wasting cash?



building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » November 25th, 2008, 9:05 pm

we all are forced to work with a realistic budget, but at times I see guys plan and select parts not so much working too build for the ideal,combo or to build what they really want, but so that they can speed up the process or get SOMETHING RUNNING.........
now theres always something to be said for having a running car vs a bunch of parts cluttering up the garage for a few years,
but WHAT WILL YOU ACCOMPLISH if you BUILD SOMETHING YOUR NOT PROUD TO OWN,
or a rapidly assembled mix of parts you got cheaply that results in a car that runs like crap???
set yourself a goal, make a detailed list of parts and start building something you really want to own once its complete , and if you want a SOHC FORD, a 426 hemi or a boss 429 don,t stick a buick 350 v8 in it just because your friend got you a great deal on the engine

I think that like many guys who were interested in faster cars ,I was like most of you and many of us learned a great deal from older more experienced friends, and we learned a great deal by watching but even more by helping and doing our own work,on our own cars!
I well remember helping on my first valve job, clutch replacement and cam swap, and now look back and shudder, just thinking of the near endless list of mistakes we made thru pure ignorance. :oops: :roll: theres no question that an older well establish machine shop can get you good prices and provide very helpful guidance at times, the problem is that many machine shops, are owned and run by guys who are more interested in making the most potential profits for the least possible work, rather than helping to build the best possible engine for the lowest cost!
finding a honest reliable,and dependable, machine shop willing to guide and teach you, and do the work at reasonable prices in a reasonably quick time frame, is from what Ive seen a rare commodity lately, finding one that does top quality work and completes it on the date and at the price you agreed too even rarer!
SOME of the The Older machine shops, both, knew how to build durable engines that made impressive power and were willing to help educate you on why things should be done a certain way when there were few or no off the shelf aftermarket parts, and thinking thru what you were doing and what needed to be modified to help increase power or durability was key to success.

when I was 19-20 years old, we thought nothing about clearances , :o , most of us tended to read thru magazine articles and assume they were telling you everything you needed to know ,so you could duplicate thier results, if we saw a Z28 off road cam,that made 45 extra HP , well it was designed to fit a SBC engine! we bought it along with a new set of lifters and just swapped it in, figuring it was instantly worth the listed 45hp the fact that the stock valve train was still installed or the cars compression ratio or rear gearing was a total mis-match and the heads they used were extensively ported (that was never mentioned in the article of course)never dawned on us back then!
factors like
spring bind?
proper clearances?
bearing crush?
bore surface?
hone plates?
multi angle valve jobs?
ring end gaps?
port flow rates?
plenum and runner design?
header design and exhaust back pressure!
at that point that was mostly a totally unknown list of concepts, but thru expensive trial and error we learned WHY and HOW things worked
(and what USUALLY caused EXPENSIVE REBUILDS)


heres some useful related info, that may prevent you from going thru the same expensive learning curve!


viewtopic.php?f=50&t=10505

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=428

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=1249

viewtopic.php?f=69&t=7722

viewtopic.php?f=69&t=7028

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=5053

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=10160

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=321

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=40

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=3156

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=111

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=501

viewtopic.php?f=69&t=9930

viewtopic.php?f=69&t=519
Ive watched the results, of the engine masters competition , with interest every year, and its rather obvious that this is basically a contest to see who can produce the best power in the hopes of greatly increasing bussiness traffic thru the shops front door, so these guys throw a TON of MONEY and EFFORT and MACHINE WORK into these engines as an advertizing tool. I doubt 90% of the customers can afford these SHOW PIECE ENGINE PLATFORMS and MOST would be SHOCKED at the COSTS
Ive got a good deal of respect for John Kasse and his new clone version of the Boss 429 stoked to 500+ cubes, but Id bet that engine costs WELL north of $30K if you want one built

http://www.jonkaaseracingengines.com/co ... gines.html
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lets say what you really want TO INSTALL, BUY OR to build a IS killer big block engine for your car, your NOT really satisfied with a 500hp crate engine, you want some bragging rights, AND AT least A 540-572 DISPLACEMENT AND 650-750HP!

http://www.theengineshop.com/prods_pages/108000.htm

http://ohiocrank.com/enginekits.html

http://www.converter.com/vigilante.htm

http://www.shafiroff.com/sportsman/540_810.asp

a quick look shows your in the $10,000 range


so you start thinking, I know where I can find a
454 4 bolt block for $500, Ill build a 496 stroker....(but do I really need a DART block at 600HP?)
Ok lets look at that, keep in mind you want no less than 600HP

block $500-$2000
rotating assembly, damper flywheel,clutch, bell housing $2000-$3000
brodix or AFR heads, valve covers, port work, $2500-$3100
hydrolic roller cam & hydrolic roller lifters,pushrods, rockers ETC, $1200-$1800
oil system $350-$600
intake , port work,$300-$1500
machine work balancing gaskets etc, $1200
carb(s), $400-$970

hell, it won,t take much to be at $8600-$11,000 PLUS so it quickly becomes obvious that you are NOT saving a bunch building a 496 vs BUYING a 540bbc, and it is potentially pretty much wasted effort if your real goal is a solid 600HP!

what IM getting at here is that PLANING your goals and the path to reach them takes some thought and research, and one of the worst things you can do jump into it with a few parts and start building and spending your hard earned cash without thinking it thru carefully

keep in mind a small block may cost slightly less but everything still applies

I know so many guys with $10,000-$15,000 invested in 468-496bbc engines, engines that won,t come NEAR being what they could have built or bought if they had PLANNED it carefully

price it out yourself...
http://www.flatlanderracing.com/home.html

http://www.jegs.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/TopCategoriesDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10001&catalogId=10002

viewtopic.php?f=55&t=5518&p=16612#p16612

http://www.summitracing.com/

http://www.dirttrackthunder.com/

http://www.dougherbert.com/

"How come so many guys finally finish their dream cars, then sell it a few months later? "

viewtopic.php?f=87&t=10408&p=43169#p43169

because they realize that all the time and work and money resulted in a car THAT was and never will be EXACTLY what they envisioned or wanted....

you wanted a 632 BBC powered chevelle and theres a 496bbc powered car in the garage and your subconcious mind, says get that %$%^^& out of here I failed to reach my goal,and don,t want to be reminded of it!

you can,t cheat the guy you see while shaving in your mirror in the morning and expect to be happy, once you set a goal, acheive anything less and youll be less than satisfied with the results

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2007 9:56 pm Post subject:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

YOUR FAMILY comes FIRST
but that doesn,t mean you can,t have toys or projects, your entitled too (some sanity and entertainment, stress relief)
set aside a small amount you can afford, for your project in a seperate account or coffee can in the garage,EVERY WEEK, THATS THE SECRET,HAVE a set goal, a parts list, supliers and costs and check off each component as you get it! and build your car! consider that $10, or $50 you can easily afford each week as previously SPENT before you get crazy. your project will eventually get built, look Im retired and have been doing the current accumulation of parts and research,on my BBC corvette swap for over 4 years now, IT will get done! but Im on a budget on a pension, ant good things take time, (getting side tracked on my dream garage project ,didn,t help either)but, hey Im human, I make less than ideal moves too!, but the garage was built KNOWING that ID get back MORE than every dime I spent if I ever sell the property

look this whole thread is basically based on the fact that 90% plus of the guys do it the way you guys that do alittle at a time as the budget allows, describe (add a bit at a time,as you can afford it, learn as you stumble thru)
and WASTE a HUGE amount of money in the process, IM not saying thats wrong! Im just pointing out that SMARTER APPROACH,is thru doing alot of research,planing and thinking BEFORE spending money, that will result in far less expence and a better final product, THE real secret here is to LEARN while HELPING & WORKING ON EVERYONE ELSEs car, WATCHING THE MORE EXPERIANCED GUYS, and LEARNING THRU THIER MISTAKES AT THIER EXPENCE, then building a killer combo from what youve learned while helping a whole lot of other guys while you & they, LEARN what works and whats wasted effort.
I take a good deal of time here, HOPEING to bring you guys up to speed, and learning from the more experianced guys while IM HERE, so take advantage of the mistakes and what I and the other more experianced guys have learned the hard expensive way......theres lots of guys that know more than I do and a whole lot that know less, but as a group we can do a far better job than any one guy could hope to do!

remember when you were 2 years old and mom said don,t stick bobby pins in the ellectric outlets.....there was a reason then, and theres a reason for what Im saying too!
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » August 19th, 2009, 3:14 pm

BTW, for those of us on limited budgets the 5.3 liter LS engine out of the later trucks has a good deal of potential, with simple upgrades you get a chevy engine that easily out performs many of the older muscle car engines
as an example, if you had an older camaro , nova, chevelle, or GTO that was going to be used mostly as transportation,where mileage and dependability theres the option of a salvage yard or crate engine 5.3 liter LS series engine swap, that makes a great deal of sense

http://www.gmperformanceparts.com/lsx/index.jsp

some new ls based engine options

watch this video if your thinking about a NEW $4000 dollar range crate engine option LS 327/5.3 ltr

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5UaTQuFzk8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bi9mbLLTpzU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PRjUkP-F ... re=related

just a really nicely set up clean looking engine compartment (engine porn)
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IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » August 21st, 2009, 9:11 am

now admittedly IM writing this some what tongue in cheek, because Im well aware of the addicted, at times even RABBID SBC faction,
BUT as a dedicated BBC, and old school Pontiac, and mopar BIG BLOCK FAN, who likes building 454-540 bbc, 455-468 Pontiac, 440-500 MOPARS and 392 hemi,s, IM always amazed at the guys who want to stick with the sbc rather than upgrade,to a basic block config thats designed for the extra displacement. but I get guys in my shop all the time who want to build 427-454 SBC engines, for street strip use, and expect both decent street manors and 550-600 flywheel hp
I build occasional sbc engines of 406 (.030 over bore 400sbc engines)and 426 (4.185 bore/3.875 stroke sbc engines)displacement, but far more 383-396 simply due to the base 350 block being far more common, I build a good deal of 383s designed for nitrous us, that easily exceed 550-600hp on the giggle gas, but once you get over a 3.875" stroke things are getting pretty tight in the cam/connecting rod clearance so I try to steer them into a BBC combo if I can, for the simple reason that its a lot simpler to build a 482-489-496 BBC (4.25" stroke 454 with or without a slight over bore) and in most cases the final product cost per horsepower will be slightly in the bbc favor once you try to exceed 550-600hp N/A
yes I can hear the screams already!
but after you have a few brandys and think it thru, many guys find Im correct,If your goal is 550-600hp plus N/A, and you want both reasonable drive ability on the street and an occasional bonzi charge to impress your buddies with reasonable chances of taking the car out without maintenance issues, a big block makes more sense to me

OK ILL STEP BACK, YOU CAN START SCREAMING AND BURNING MY LIKENESS IN EFFIGY

but keep in mind a light weight car thats easy to work on is a joy to own, so think about your car selection carefully and don,t ignore the fact that kit cars,CHEVELLES,ROAD RUNNERS, older camaros,novas, 240Z-300Z datsuns, DARTS and corvettes generally have an advantage in that they come with a good deal of the work, or parts already their in the design, and tend to be lighter in weight than larger cars
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http://www.factoryfive.com/

http://www.lonestarclassics.com/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ckgfkPU8Ss
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » June 6th, 2010, 11:41 am

I constantly see younger guys in the shop that want to build a fast car but most of those same guys have very limited budgets to work with, many have a car with a 305/307 sbc some even have older 350sbc cars that they want advice on selecting the best heads and cams and intakes, etc. the truth is that building reliable horse power takes both some mechanical skill and more money in parts and machine work than , many of the guys have and most are reluctant to spend cash on rear gears, higher stall speed converters and larger brakes, which may be required along with engine mods.
Now it was a long time ago, when I was young, but I was just as eager and just as broke/ cash strapped , and just as reluctant to spend cash on components that I didn,t feel would make my car faster, and just like most of those guys I assumed that just adding a different intake or a cam would result in significant power increases.
The truth is that building a kick butt car takes both careful planing and an ability to stick with the plan, once you start.
obviously taking the time to do some basic research helps a great deal, you want to think thru the cars potential and how it will look once its complete, a great deal of a cars potential performance is related to its power to weight ratio unless youve got a trunk full of cash, to spend its a fairly safe bet that a 383 stuffed in a 4000lb impalla, or caprice , is unlikely to perform as well as a similar engine installed in a 2100lb cobra replica or a T-bucket, nor is the larger car likely to be as easy to work on or easy to stop or handle, so your first job is to stop and think thru your choice of cars and not become locked into tunnel vision and think your only option is modifying your current car, in fact its almost 100% sure bet that having a project car and a project car engine separate from your DEPENDABLE transportation is the smarter route to follow, in this hobby.
and having a pick-up truck to carry the larger parts you may want to transport to the machine shop like engine blocks and differentials and transmissions is a very good idea! especially if your PICK-UP or SUV gets reasonable mileage.
I had a datsun 4X4 for almost 15 years as a parts chaser and racked up a bit over 300K miles before selling it.
one of my close friends had a pair of very similar 1968 el caminos that looked remarkably similar to this one, it was an excellent choice in his case as his project car was the same basic car but with a 496 BBC stroker and a dana 60 rear, while his part chased has a 307 sbc
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NEXT ID strongly suggest
DO YOURSELF A HUGE FAVOR
buy these books, FIRST it will be the best money you ever spent, read them, and you will be miles ahead of the average guy. youll save thousands of dollars and thousands of hours once youve got a good basic understanding of what your trying to do!


http://www.themotorbookstore.com/resmchstvi.html

how to assemble an engine basics on video


these books


HOW TO BUILD MAX PERFORMANCE CHEVY SMALL BLOCKS ON A BUDGET by DAVID VIZARD
http://www.amazon.com/Build-Performance ... amp;sr=1-1

JOHN LINGENFELTER on modifying small-block chevy engines

http://www.amazon.com/John-Lingenfelter ... amp;sr=1-1


SMOKEY YUNICK,S POWER SECRETS

http://www.amazon.com/Smokey-Yunicks-Po ... amp;sr=1-1



youll need a basic cost effective engine stand, you can resell later if you want too, just DON,T EVEN THINK about the cheap three leg designs
like this
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get something like this
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http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=34924


read these, links its well worth your time & effort

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=2709

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=2834

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=489

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=339

viewtopic.php?f=7&t=783

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=677

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1908
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby philip » June 6th, 2010, 6:47 pm

You make some good points that work well in many facets of life ;not just cars. Starting a project car is fun and exciting,but set realistic time goals as well as financial. doing as much of the work myself as possible is were I feel accomplished,but if a year goes by and i'm not driving it yet a lot of the thrill is gone.Gaining knowledge before you start is key. Learning from other peoples mistakes and experiments will save a lot of headaches and there is a ton of information online nowadays and people that are willing to share. The idea of having a project car different than your daily driver is some good wisdom. Its all fun and games untill you break it (and you will) and your mother in law has to drive you in to work. I busted the transmission on my 69 Camaro two days before getting married. So guess who ended up taking his beat up 57 chevy wagon on his honeymoon. finally on the horsepower to weight ratio;has everyone seen the smart car with the Hayabusa engine on youtube?
Have fun,Philip
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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » June 29th, 2010, 4:31 pm

IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » August 15th, 2010, 7:59 am

IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » April 13th, 2012, 11:39 am

I recently pulled into a gas station and saw a guy filling up his 1967 AC COBRA replica,
so I walked over and found out it was a guy I had not seen in 30 plus years that looked rather familiar .
we got to discussing cars ,engines and hot rods in general and he mentioned that this AC COBRA replica was the car he had dreamed about owning for decades, he found it listed in Craig's list at a decent price , because the guy selling it was recently UN-employed and the engine was not running and the guy was in foreclosure, so he got an exceptionally clean ,non running car that was a project that was about 85% complete, for $18K , that had a dual quad 460 ford and manual transmission, which was about $12k-$15K less than he had priced similar cars recently.
once he owned the car he rapidly had second thoughts about acquiring it! the car itself was great !
the car was completed by him in only a few months time at only about $3500 more cash into the project and it certainly looked and sounded great!


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but he found that a two seat car with extremely limited trunk space, and no air conditioning that was great fun to play with, but that was basically a flashing bill board that said "HEY COPS WATCH ME IM ABOUT TO SPEED!" and a car that was not all that comfortable to drive in even light rain, because it leaked and had nearly zero traction was not what he had been dreaming about!
to put it frankly, he had had second thoughts and was thinking about selling the car.
he says its a classic case of being careful what you wish for
because you might get it!
after owning the car hes thinking about looking for a HEMI ROAD RUNNER as that was his OTHER DREAM CAR, and after owning the COBRA he thinks that the ROAD RUNNER would be far more practical



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IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » February 18th, 2013, 3:07 pm

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I always like seeing guys get close to completing the projects they start and I stopped over a friends shop where he is almost got a factory five kit cobra built, the car was up on jack stands so I didn,t get to see it drive but it sure looks good and sounds nice, I wish Id taken pictures , it looks remarkably similar to the picture I posted above but his is LIGHT BLUE with a GOLD accent stripe and CHROME SIDE PIPES, hes got a 429 ford with an auto trans out of a 1970 thunder bird wreck he bought for $500 in running condition to get the drive train,but the body was a rusted mess.
he intends to get the car up in drivable condition, work out the bugs and suspension and then pull the drive train over his summer vacation and replace it with a similar second 460 ford engines hes currently building as his primary performance engine project


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V96-AQ1FghI

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yht8Yk51qN8

http://www.hotrod.com/howto/hdrp_0511_f ... ewall.html

https://www.factoryfive.com/

viewtopic.php?f=61&t=5237&p=15411&hilit=cobra#p15411

viewtopic.php?f=44&t=1370&p=12107&hilit=+cobra+came#p12107

viewtopic.php?f=44&t=1947&p=5175&hilit=+cobra+came#p5175

viewtopic.php?f=44&t=883&p=1391&hilit=+cobra+came#p1391
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » March 7th, 2013, 7:10 pm

a couple project cars to give you a few ideas

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IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
grumpyvette

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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby Indycars » March 7th, 2013, 8:17 pm


Is is possible that he welded these fuel lines on to the main line
or is there another line I can't see ???


ratr4.jpg


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Rick
Too much is just enough!!!

- Check Out My Dart SHP Engine Project: viewtopic.php?f=69&t=3814
- Need a Dynamic Compression Ratio Calculator: viewtopic.php?f=99&t=4458
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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby 87vette81big » March 7th, 2013, 11:37 pm

Indycars wrote:
Is is possible that he welded these fuel lines on to the main line
or is there another line I can't see ???


ratr4.jpg




I think Your correct Rick.
But instead of welding the fuel lines, He Brazed them with an Oxygen- Actelyne torch with a Jewlers gas welding tip.
Then had lines rechromed.
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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby Indycars » March 8th, 2013, 9:25 am

87vette81big wrote:I think Your correct Rick.
But instead of welding the fuel lines, He Brazed them with an Oxygen- Actelyne torch with a Jewlers gas welding tip.
Then had lines rechromed.


That is some very nice work!
Rick
Too much is just enough!!!

- Check Out My Dart SHP Engine Project: viewtopic.php?f=69&t=3814
- Need a Dynamic Compression Ratio Calculator: viewtopic.php?f=99&t=4458
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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby grumpyvette » March 8th, 2013, 9:46 am

Ive seen lots of guys use sweated copper pipe connections (either 3/8" or 1/2") depending on the application, and then have the fabricated lines chromed, these fittings are fairly cheap and easy to work with and if done correctly and polished correctly they work.the problem is that they won,t be flexible,so unless its supported its subject to vibration damage
http://www.plumbingsupply.com/copper.html#tees
http://www.plumbingsupply.com/copper.html#90s
http://www.plumbingsupply.com/copperpipe.html
IF YOU CAN,T SMOKE THE TIRES AT WILL,FROM A 60 MPH ROLLING START YOUR ENGINE NEEDS MORE WORK!!"!
IF YOU CAN , YOU NEED BETTER TIRES AND YOUR SUSPENSION NEEDS MORE WORK!!
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Re: building a dream or wasting cash?

Postby philly » February 27th, 2014, 2:39 am

this is a really inspirational thread. it was linked from a link from another link, well you know this forum is i just went down the rabbit hole and ended up here, i thought i would post something to bring it back to the top so people would read it.. also i think there should be adisclaimer in the title for incredible and obscene amounts of gearhead porno in this thread!
-phil

There's never enough money to build it right, but there's always enough to build it twice!
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