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Discussion Starter #1
I've got a 68 Nova that I'm throwing front disc brakes on next week and battery relocation to the back. With the $10K left over I need an engine, built rear, trans and all the little stuff like sub-frames, ds saftey loop, lkwd struts, etc. I'm looking at a built 383 crate motor $7k, throwing a summit 350 in it $700 and a Currie 9" rear with 456 grs $1500 and be around my 10K budget or should I go GM ZZ502 Crate $7,500K, summit 400 $800 and same Currie rear? I guess big block vs small block? I want something I can drive to the track rip some time slips and drive home. Thanks for any input!
 

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if its just a strip car a built 383 that revs high will be lighter and make good power but my choice would be 502. lots of torque at low rpm and will still make plenty of horsepower. big blocks heavier but plenty of power. just my 2 cents.
 

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if you're planning on buying a crate motor, make sure to check out your options. shafiroff has some good ones, as does world products. not that i have anything against the gm performance crate engines, i just want to remind you that there are more options. what are you budgeting for tires, wheels, suspension mods, exhaust, torque converter, etc.?

i don't mean to be a spoil sport, just filling in the holes...
 

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Yeah, as far as crate motors there are ALOT of options. Heck you could even buy a short block and fill it out with kick *** heads and stuff to really taylor it to your specific needs. I think with 10K you should be able to build a really nice street/strip car if you take your time and really plan it out and find good deals. Me personally, I'd go with a big block, you'll be able to run good at the track and not sacrifice reliability on the street. Wild small blocks are fun but you can spend just as much on one as a big block and be going through things like lifters and valve springs more often. A guy at my track has a nice 67 duece with just a front clip, 502 crate, full exhuast and little slicks. He drives to and from the track with it and it runs 11.60's purring like a kitten, if I could do mine over I'd follow that recipe. Just my .02.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the insight. I'm kinda leaning torwards the big block just for reliability and the torque factor. I've got slicks out back and skinnies up front, so the tires and rims are pretty much done. I'm going to leave is multi-leaf springs for now and just put on traction bars to keep it simple. I'm leaning towards the GM 502 $7,500 with a summit 400 $800 and the Currie rear for $1500 and just be done with it and happy. How much does the Shiernoff (spelling?) go for? I want to keep the crate motor around $7K.
 

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He drives to and from the track with it and it runs 11.60's purring like a kitten
A mild small block could run 11.60's easily.

be going through things like lifters and valve springs more often.
You could run a hydraulic flat tappet cam and go that fast without ANY maintenance for a long time. The valve springs in my old motor(10's on motor; 9's on juice) were in the car for several years--I did have a lifter failure on the Power Tour, but they were about 12 years old, and never had the oiling holes drilled to lube the roller. I have a friend with a big block that lost 2 engines due to lifter failures in a lot less time than my engine. He gave up and went back to flat tappet cams!
 

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I'd go with the 502, 400, rear, and don't forget a good converter to go with it. My brother in law has a 502 with around 700 8-9 second quarter mile passes on in a dragster. It runs 8.90-9.0 for 6 seasons without skipping a beat. That's at 5800rpm's. If you put it in a door car you get a warranty with it also. I'd also put a set of Cal-Traks on it. Dave
 

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It seems to me like your $10K budget is a little skewed for a race car, allowing 70% for the engine and only 30% for the rest of the drivetrain and chassis. I would put at least half of the budget in the chassis, suspension, shocks, roll bar, converter, tranny, rear end, fuel system, instruments, safety equipment, exhaust, etc. then deal for the best motor I could get for the other half.
 

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I agree with Goble, get some chassis/suspension work, get the fuel, ignition and instruments for a good peice and is safe to race, then do what you can for a motor with whatever is left. If you go cheap to start with and the car is inconsistant, tough to drive, and not really safe for the speed you're going where do you go to resolve that? I can send you photos of a beautiful 71 Nova that my buddy bought new and raced in SS for many years til he upped the HP alot( but not the roll cage, and safety stuff )that is flat from the front bumper to the main hoop and almost killed my buddy. 65 post knows the car and the owner and he wrecked it at Thompson Dragway so being fast is cool but not always smart. You have to be safe as well. If you build a good safe car you can always go back and add power to it and it will work. Everyone has opinions but that's mine. Best of luck. RM
 

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I agree with the previous two posts. Having a powerful motor to propell the car down the 1/4 quickly requires the correct chassis, safety equipment, etc. I would suggest that you at least start to price the items you will need, then see what your budget will allow you.

You will need: (if you already have it, take it off the list)
Roll bar (6 pt minimum)
frame connectors
fuel cell
fuel pump
race seat
tranny shield
drive line loop
harness
jacket
helmet
traction aides such as shocks, CalTracs
good converter
good guages, tachometer (if you don't already have them)
disconnect switch (if battery is in the trunk)
shifter with neutral safety switch
Ignition system such as a MSD 6AL
line lock for doing burnouts, launching, etc.

As you can see your $10K budget can disappear very quickly, and that doesn't even include the engine.

Again, these are just opinions, but remember that safety is the utmost importance.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for all the info. Think it's going to be the GM 502, Summit 400, Currie rear. As far as all the safety stuff, it's all going in the car too, can't even race at Englishtown without a drive shaft safety loop, still have my helmet from when I was racing my '02 Stang. I can't wait to start racing again!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
GM 502 is on back order. Think I'm going with a World 509 for 8K and I think my budget just went over 10K with everything too. Isn't that what always happens!?:beer:
 

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skewed, yet welcome. how old are you? don't get me wrong, a Summit catalog in hand. maybe one of us.
 
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