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Username Post: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get....        (Topic#122088)
billst 
Senior Member
Posts: 157

Loc: Houston
Reg: 07-30-05
01-21-06 03:28 AM - Post#858183    

Moving on from the 396 idea, I'd like a moment of your time for opinions on what parts I should start collecting for a 454 short block. My goal here is to run 9.50's in a 2750 lb car. 750HP will get me there, and this is probably the best route in terms of cost. A milder build would be preferred, with a N20 plate kit added to make up the HP deficit. The car will probably see some street use, and I don't want to run a .750" solid roller on the street (you get the idea) Now that you have an idea of what I'm going to be doing with the motor, let me ask you about the block itself and the rotating assembly.

454 2 bolt blocks are everywhere. Will the two bolt main structure hold for what I'm wanting to do? I don't want to live on the edge with this motor, so this is one of those "must knows". So the question is 2 bolt, 4 bolt, 2 bolt block with splayed caps? Opinions and real life experiances are appreciated.

Second part to this post is the rotating assembly. I don't think a stock cast 454 crank will survive at that level. A steel crank here is probably a no-brainer. These are easy enough to find, so unless someone has a point to make here, I'll skip on to the rods.
Okay, I've been told by a respected engine builder that the factory press pin rods with ARP bolts will handle 800HP. Since this is very close to where I'm going, maybe not worth pressing my luck. This motor will see 7k RPM's and that's about it. Maybe 7300 if I'm late. I want to do this part right, so I'm really up for ideas. I've seen the dimple rods on Ebay for $250, but I'm not sure how much better they are than regular 454 rods. I know there are car and truck rods for the 454, and I know how to tell them apart. Will the stronger truck rod work for me, or do I need the 7/16" bolt the dimple rod offers?

I'm going to end this here at just these 3 components (block, crank, rods) Hopefully this isn't too much for one thread.
As with most builds, budget is a major concern. I'm trying to stay with factory based parts as opposed to the more costly aftermarket variety. I've had an Ebay business for several years buying and selling used parts. I am accustom to inspecting and evaluating used performance parts, so I feel comfortable buying all of the major components for this motor having been already run.
Trying to do 750HP on a 2 bolt main block with factory parts while having a warm-fuzzy feeling about the motor holding together may not be possible. I'm testing the waters with you fine gentlemen to help determine that.

Thank you for your help,
Bill

 
Mike 
Senior Member
Posts: 8136

Reg: 06-30-00
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 03:49 AM - Post#858184    
    In response to billst

Using the calculator on the TCI site your 750HP/2750lb should get you closer to 8.90 than 9.50.
625HP/2750lb gets 9.40's.
http://www.tciauto.com/tech_info/calculators.htm#13

 
billst 
Senior Member
Posts: 157

Loc: Houston
Reg: 07-30-05
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 04:06 AM - Post#858185    
    In response to Mike

Quote:

Using the calculator on the TCI site your 750HP/2750lb should get you closer to 8.90 than 9.50.
625HP/2750lb gets 9.40's.
http://www.tciauto.com/tech_info/calculators.htm#13



Okay, thanks.
Maybe we can stay with the numbers I posted for the sake of staying on topic. I think if the chassis certifies to 9.50, it will certify to 8.50. Going faster would be a nice option.

Thanks again

 
Don57 
"9th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 1261
Don57
Age: 64
Loc: Illinois
Reg: 04-28-00
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get....
01-21-06 04:55 AM - Post#858186    
    In response to billst

My opinion -
Don't use a 2 bolt block. Mark IV 4 bolt blocks are good, readily available and inexpensive. You may even be able to find a good deal on a bowtie block.
You are correct about the crank. Steel is a must. 4340 is preferable but not absolutely necessary.
Can't help you with the rods. All I ever used were C&A or GRP billet aluminum.
If you've ever had a bottom end come apart you know how much damage it can cause and how costly it can be. Don't cut any corners down there. You can easily destroy a block and rotating assembly with one small component failure.
My experience is running big block Chevys at 8000 rpm, 900 hp in a 1430 lb dragster.
Don


Happy Birthday to all the 1964 cars and trucks that are 50 years old this year. Get your car a present!


 
Mike 
Senior Member
Posts: 8136

Reg: 06-30-00
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 04:59 AM - Post#858187    
    In response to billst

Since there here ,I'll use them.
Take a look at the dynoed combos from the Engine Factory:
http://www.enginefactory.com/big_block_engines.htm
Yeah, the 700HP is a 572 but note the parts.

 
BrianEsser 
BANNED
Posts: 7383

Age: 38
Loc: North Star, Ohio
Reg: 06-30-01
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 05:10 AM - Post#858188    
    In response to Mike

I know where you can buy a 396 smallblock shortblock built with a bowtie block, 4340 crank and race rods for 3500 here in Celina, Ohio. It has roughly 30 passes on it.


 
billst 
Senior Member
Posts: 157

Loc: Houston
Reg: 07-30-05
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 05:19 AM - Post#858189    
    In response to Mike

Quote:

Since there here ,I'll use them.
Take a look at the dynoed combos from the Engine Factory:
http://www.enginefactory.com/big_block_engines.htm
Yeah, the 700HP is a 572 but note the parts.



Their using 4 bolt mains, steel crank and H-rods.
I posted my question on a racing site here in Houston. Here's what one guy said.

I run a 454 2 bolt studed block @ .125 over with a 4.25 stroke crank.Steel crank,eagle rods,and wiseco pistons on alky and I just refreshed it after 400 passes. My car weighs 2850 with me in it and My best time is 5.53.

I would never have guessed you could do that with a 2 bolt block. That's equal to an 8.80 1/4 pass.
Wonder how he gets away with it?

 
Mike 
Senior Member
Posts: 8136

Reg: 06-30-00
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 06:29 AM - Post#858190    
    In response to billst

Very careful block prep to start with.
Mag the webs and some Hard Blok up to the bottom of the freeze plugs helps.
Accurate main alignment after the studs are installed and an excelent balance job -likely internal.
Who was that?
Sounds like a guy I know from NW houston.

 
Don57 
"9th Year" Silver Supporting Member
Posts: 1261
Don57
Age: 64
Loc: Illinois
Reg: 04-28-00
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 06:40 AM - Post#858191    
    In response to billst

As you know, there's a few different things that determine the reliability of the rotating assemby. Compression, stroke, fuel, balance, rpm, etc. vs the quality of the components.
The guy that's running a 2 bolt is apparently not running it hard enough to hurt it with the combination he's using.
You said "I don't want to live on the edge with this motor".
The little extra investment in a 4 bolt block is cheap insurance compared to replacing virtually everything under the manifold in the event of a failure.
Don


Happy Birthday to all the 1964 cars and trucks that are 50 years old this year. Get your car a present!


 
billst 
Senior Member
Posts: 157

Loc: Houston
Reg: 07-30-05
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 07:51 AM - Post#858192    
    In response to Mike

Quote:

Very careful block prep to start with.
Mag the webs and some Hard Blok up to the bottom of the freeze plugs helps.
Accurate main alignment after the studs are installed and an excelent balance job -likely internal.
Who was that?
Sounds like a guy I know from NW houston.



He said his name was Bob.
Also mentioned there was no hard-bloc in his motor.

 
greg_moreira 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 3264

Reg: 10-06-03
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-21-06 09:17 AM - Post#858193    
    In response to billst

Where is the 750 horsepower coming from? This is important....so are you doing it through boost, nitrous, or trying to make it in a naturally aspirated motor? Depending on all these things...the type and level of abuse will differ. So will the life expectancy of certain things.

My suggestion to you is to put a 496 crank in the sucker. No matter how you slice it, your going to want to use a good crank. Just like you, Ive heard of people pushing the limits to numbers like you want with stock stuff....but none of the guys that did push these limits werent exepcting it to really last. Some of the guys that do a realy good job do get lucky and their stuff holds up. But, its a lot harder to do, and its just not a gamble you want to take if your expecting it to hold up well. You may or may not be as lucky as some of the others that push the limits!

So, put in a stroker steel crank to bring the inches up to around 496. Id be using a 4 bolt block with good rods and pistons. A typical stock block done right can take it....but something more durable never hurt anybody

The problem is.....I dont know what kind of budget you are working with. Even if the shortblock in bone stock config, dirt cheap, and could take more than 750 horsepower....the kind of top end required to feed it will blow most budgets. I can give you quite a few real world 496-540 inch combos that actually made around 675 horsepower and more....and on pump fuel in most cases....but it takes a great top end combination.

Think good aluminum heads, solid roller cams, good solid roller lifters....a good valvetrian in general and dyno time to atually find all of that power. As I said, if youd like, I can give plenty of examples of buildups that do make the power you crave....and trust me....its much easier with more inches. Since you need a crank anyways...ya might as well buy a longer stroke one! But, I cant easily come up with anything that really would fly on a tight budget. That kinda power is a lot. It takes good parts to do, so there arent many ways into tricking an engine into making that kind of power without using good stuff.

There is one way, but I dunno if youd like it or not. The one easier way would be to build a durable bottom end(youd have to spend money here in either situation). But, when it comes to the top end, keep everything milder and cheaper. Like, use some well ported factory cast heads or moderately priced entry level aftermarket pieces. From there, use a good ol solid flat tappet cam. When building, build for 500-550ish horsepower naturally aspriated. And then, to meet your goal, use the proper dose of nitrous when needed. This kind of power is much cheaper to attain cause it wont take as much of a top end. The reason being is that you can definitely save money on heads. You wont need any full CNC heads(big money heads) just to make 550 horses. A well ported 049 or 781 head could make 500-550 without spending crazy money. And, so could lots of the lesser priced aftermarkets(like a performer rpm big block head for example). And of course, a solid flat tappet valvetrain as a whole is much cheaper than a roller valvetrain. And then the nitrous will bring you up to your proposed goal when you need it. Building a forced induction motor with the same kind of approach can work out the same. You dont need the absolute best top end. It helps for sure....but you can still use milder stuff and then use forced induction to make up for the losses. Of course, forced induction is more expensive than the initial cost of a nitrous kit! After a lot of bottle refills though...nitrous eventually becomes more expensive. It just depends on the kind of money you can really maneage.

One last note....how streetable does this need to be? I missed that part. If streetability is not much of a concern, you can actually save a couple bucks. If there is no concern for pump fuel or some kind of idle quality, you can use a lot of cam and compression to make up for the shortcomings of the top end. In other words, I can figure you a combo to make 700 horsepower on 93 fuel. But, you could also use a little lesser of a head and not as many "fancy" parts....but then jack the compression up quite a lot and use even bigger of a cam(within reason) to draw the flow out of the heads. The less efficient combo like this wont run as smoothly...but you could still draw power out of it and proably save a couple bucks. Lemme know what you after.

 
billst 
Senior Member
Posts: 157

Loc: Houston
Reg: 07-30-05
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-22-06 02:13 AM - Post#858194    
    In response to greg_moreira

Quote:

Where is the 750 horsepower coming from? This is important....so are you doing it through boost, nitrous, or trying to make it in a naturally aspirated motor? Depending on all these things...the type and level of abuse will differ. So will the life expectancy of certain things.

My suggestion to you is to put a 496 crank in the sucker. No matter how you slice it, your going to want to use a good crank. Just like you, Ive heard of people pushing the limits to numbers like you want with stock stuff....but none of the guys that did push these limits werent exepcting it to really last. Some of the guys that do a realy good job do get lucky and their stuff holds up. But, its a lot harder to do, and its just not a gamble you want to take if your expecting it to hold up well. You may or may not be as lucky as some of the others that push the limits!

So, put in a stroker steel crank to bring the inches up to around 496. Id be using a 4 bolt block with good rods and pistons. A typical stock block done right can take it....but something more durable never hurt anybody

The problem is.....I dont know what kind of budget you are working with. Even if the shortblock in bone stock config, dirt cheap, and could take more than 750 horsepower....the kind of top end required to feed it will blow most budgets. I can give you quite a few real world 496-540 inch combos that actually made around 675 horsepower and more....and on pump fuel in most cases....but it takes a great top end combination.

Think good aluminum heads, solid roller cams, good solid roller lifters....a good valvetrian in general and dyno time to atually find all of that power. As I said, if youd like, I can give plenty of examples of buildups that do make the power you crave....and trust me....its much easier with more inches. Since you need a crank anyways...ya might as well buy a longer stroke one! But, I cant easily come up with anything that really would fly on a tight budget. That kinda power is a lot. It takes good parts to do, so there arent many ways into tricking an engine into making that kind of power without using good stuff.

There is one way, but I dunno if youd like it or not. The one easier way would be to build a durable bottom end(youd have to spend money here in either situation). But, when it comes to the top end, keep everything milder and cheaper. Like, use some well ported factory cast heads or moderately priced entry level aftermarket pieces. From there, use a good ol solid flat tappet cam. When building, build for 500-550ish horsepower naturally aspriated. And then, to meet your goal, use the proper dose of nitrous when needed. This kind of power is much cheaper to attain cause it wont take as much of a top end. The reason being is that you can definitely save money on heads. You wont need any full CNC heads(big money heads) just to make 550 horses. A well ported 049 or 781 head could make 500-550 without spending crazy money. And, so could lots of the lesser priced aftermarkets(like a performer rpm big block head for example). And of course, a solid flat tappet valvetrain as a whole is much cheaper than a roller valvetrain. And then the nitrous will bring you up to your proposed goal when you need it. Building a forced induction motor with the same kind of approach can work out the same. You dont need the absolute best top end. It helps for sure....but you can still use milder stuff and then use forced induction to make up for the losses. Of course, forced induction is more expensive than the initial cost of a nitrous kit! After a lot of bottle refills though...nitrous eventually becomes more expensive. It just depends on the kind of money you can really maneage.

One last note....how streetable does this need to be? I missed that part. If streetability is not much of a concern, you can actually save a couple bucks. If there is no concern for pump fuel or some kind of idle quality, you can use a lot of cam and compression to make up for the shortcomings of the top end. In other words, I can figure you a combo to make 700 horsepower on 93 fuel. But, you could also use a little lesser of a head and not as many "fancy" parts....but then jack the compression up quite a lot and use even bigger of a cam(within reason) to draw the flow out of the heads. The less efficient combo like this wont run as smoothly...but you could still draw power out of it and proably save a couple bucks. Lemme know what you after.



Greg,all, thanks for taking the time to respond.
You're preaching to the choir on your top end recommendations. I plan on doing exactly like you outlined with a set of ported 781 heads, solid flat tappet and raised compression. I'm going to take this out on the street maybe once a month to a car show (or the like), so a drum of 112 in the garage to mix with pump gas was the plan. Keeping the top end mild and adding Nitrous was the thinking as indicated by my original post. I've sprayed the last 4 motor's I've owned, so the concept of part time HP is a part of whatever I do now.

Before discussing the rotating assembly, please take a moment to comment on the machine work needed for the block.
In preparation of pushing this hunk of factory iron to it's near limits, what machining would you want done outside of the typical bore/hone?
Align hone the saddles? Correct any lifter bore misalignment? (I've heard this is a common issue on production big block castings)
Clean the decks?

What I'm getting at is people say "you can get by with a factory block if you're careful during machining. Okay, so I have some sort of education, what are these guy's going to do outside of normal processes? Do you mag the webbing? Do you check everything that can possible be checked to confirm straightness, perpendicularity, parallel and roundness?
I'm going to go through with this, so I'll be diligent in finding out the answers to these questions. I've never been one to just drop a motor off at a machine shop and say "okay, fix it".
It's hard to find a good machine shop where the guy will take the time to go over everything with you. I'll soon be looking for the right person.
Thanks!

 
greg_moreira 
Very Senior Member
Posts: 3264

Reg: 10-06-03
Re: 454 short block to handle 750HP - what to get.
01-22-06 09:30 AM - Post#858195    
    In response to billst

The very best thing you can do for yourself is find a good shop with good equipment! Its not just about how much additional stuff you do over a typical rebuild, its also about how much more accurately its all done. Even if all you do is the very basics in terms of machine work, there is the right way to do it, and there is a better way to do it(and of course, theres always a wrong way to do it too hehe). Just for example is main bearing clearance. Having them all well within spec is one thing(the right way)....but having everything machined and measured to much more exacting tolerances is another thing(the better way).

Another example, equipment used does make a difference. Say you check out two shops. Say shop one has a group of very very good pieces of equipment and great operators. Say shop two and one or two very very good pieces of equipment...but the pieces they use are capable of doing multiple jobs very well on one rig. We are assuming these operators are good as well. Well, it would sound that either situation is a good one....great equipment with great operators. But, the shop with less equipment that does more work has a better chance of doing a better job. The reason being, every time youve got to move and reset the block on another piece of equipment, you add a bit more of a margin for error! See what Im sayin? So, no matter how much info we can give you, the best thing you can do is verify that your working with a good capable shop that has the equipment and the know how to accurately do whatever needs to be done, cause it doesnt matter how many bases you cover...it just goes without saying that good work is what makes or breaks the situation. And, if you go with a shop that has all the right people and stuff, than its a good bet that they will also know their game and they will know exactly what should be done with your block.

Check out Carl at http://WWW.CNCBLOCKSNORTHEAST.COM

This is a guy that knows his stuff, and this is a shop that is setup! I beleive he has free shipping as well! If nothing else, you can communicate with Carl a bit and get more of an expert opinion than I could give. He is on here at times with the screen name CNC BLOCKS N/E

 
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