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I have a 396 in my nova thats pretty healthy and im pretty happy with it. My dad wants to buy it and put in his nova. If I go ahead and do this I was thinking about a 454 to put back in my nova. My nova has a Th400 trans 3500 stall and 373 gears, so I would like to built a 454 that compliment the stuff I allready have.What years of 454 engines should I be looking at? do 454s make good power with say 9.5 compression? I know my 396 has 11.5 pistons in it with a 533 lift cam and its a damn good runner. I dont want to build a slug! Any ideals? 450 hp would be great if If I can do it without spending a fortune.
 

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Sounds like you are happy with what you got and it's a good runner. Maybe you could keep your set up and help dad find a 396 to build for his car. Possibly replicate it or make adjustments for the performance that he is looking for.

I had 454 from a donor 72 Chevelle and it ran good and strong. The down side to me is the weight, and huge fuel consumption. I had this engine in a 67 firebird backed by a Turbo 400 and 411's. It would launch but it was also screamin at speeds above 65-75 MPH.
 

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454 will provide more torque than the 396...but if u are going to build from scratch I suggest to go ahead and make it a 496 to make it turn up quicker. As far as fuel consumption it all depends on the combo u put together I run a 540 with 342 gears and a turbo 350 with 3000 stall and get decent mileage about 200 miles on a tank and its 9.5 compression I run pump gas and it makes 630 hp hope this helps u on ur decision
 

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454 will provide more torque than the 396...but if u are going to build from scratch I suggest to go ahead and make it a 496 to make it turn up quicker. As far as fuel consumption it all depends on the combo u put together I run a 540 with 342 gears and a turbo 350 with 3000 stall and get decent mileage about 200 miles on a tank and its 9.5 compression I run pump gas and it makes 630 hp hope this helps u on ur decision
X2 With BIG cubes you can use a lot less cam and still produce a way more power and better gas mileage than your 396....Jack
 

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I have a 468 in my 69. It has the full Edelbrock Performer RPM kit in it. The car idles with a nice lope and will still idle at 800 rpm. It put out 540 hp with 9.5 compression. It has torque that will literally lay you back in the seat. I have been very happy with it.
 

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I recently swapped my tired 396 for a new ZZ454 and am very happy with the results. I'm running a Muncie with 3.55's in the rear. I still have the 396 for a future rebuild but for now the 454 is a torque monster. My 396 had some issues and wasn't nearly as well built as yours sounds.

Sure gas mileage will never be great but that's just fine with me. I say go for it with a new motor and have a blast. I'd really love to see what a 454 can do with a set of AFR's on top. Or a 496.

Good luck and have fun! :beer:
 

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Back in the late 90's I had a 468 in my 68 Impala SS with a built turbo 350, 4:56 gears and it turned high 11's at Bandimere Speedway in Colorado!

-454 bored .030 over
-line bored
-decked
-balanced
-TRW 12.5 / 1 forged pistons (not recommend now a-days for street use...)
-Crane LS-6 "Blueprint" cam
-Harland Sharp roller rockers
-ARP fasteners throughout
-396 oval ported heads (excellent torque makers...)
-C-396 Edelbrock intake
-Holley 3-barrel 950cfm
-Hooker headers
-3" exhaust
-MSD 6-AL ignition

I think that is about it.
 

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I'm going with a 496 in my '67. I had a 396 in my first '67 way back in 1979. I'm calling this one my "midlife crisis " build. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I like the ideal of a pump gas engine,mine needs a blend of 100 octane to keep it happy. If I can build a 454 with 9.5 compression and make 425 hp id be happy with that!
 
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