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Hey all- hoping for someone with a bit more experience to help me out with this question so I can consider my options before moving forward.


I have a 73 Nova with a 350 that's reaching the end of it's life. The car is my daily so I'm looking into engine swap options/efi/etc etc etc. My buddy has a brand new engine (well, a box of brand new parts of an engine yet to be assembled) in his garage, we are thinking of swapping in. The engine is a 383 LT1 w/individual port injection EFI, and an 11:1 compression ratio, that he thinks will be putting 400 HP to the wheels. I am not 100% this is a completely accurate guess ran through a 4l60E, but I'm not a drivetrain expert by any means. He could be right; he's a smart dude.

Now; that's a LOT of HP for a daily driver that's already a light car. I want to/am wondering if I NEED to do some handling/braking upgrades. He thinks with a couple tweaks (Need a new power steering rag joint, maybe disc brake conversion) I'd be ok. I'm wondering if I need to go all out-balls out and drop a 4 link in the back; which I'm paranoid about doing because we had some trouble installing my new leafs.

Currently the suspension I'm running is as such- I've rebuilt pretty much all of it at this point.

Rear;
New Belltech musclecar leaf springs-stock height
Cheapo 25 dollar OEM spec shocks
Rear drums-Stock?

Front;
New Belltech lowering coil springs-1 inch drop
New Classic Performance Parts Upper and Lower tubular control arms;
Full new steering linkage except the drag link, power steering box, rag joint, and column. (All new tie rod ends, pittman arm, idler arm etc from proforged)
OEM spec shocks (I seriously can't remember the brand on these; got them from o'reillys ages ago)

Should I/do I need to change most of this for a buffer engine? Or could I just throw on some performance shocks. new rag joint, disc brakes in the rear, and throw on some good traction bars? This is the first time I've really been doing high performance anything to a car, so I want to be safe/not break anythings.

Thanks for your help guys.
 

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I'd say with more go, upgrade your whoa... maybe look into a 4 wheel LS brake swap with a good master cylinder... it's a quality, cost effective brake system... upgrade the suspension as you go, since it's pretty much new... there's my 2 pennies.
 

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Not too familiar with brakes; LS Brake swap=Pulling the brake booster from a newer LS model car?
Doing an LS brake swap is taking the front and/or rear 12" rotors and calipers from a 1998-2002 Camaro and installing them on your older car.. The parts you will need to acquire will be the front 12" rotors and calipers and abutment brackets from the Camaro and rears if you want to go disc all the way around, you'll need a disc/drum or disc/disc master cylinder depending on which setup you decide to go with, and you will need some brackets to mate Camaro calipers to your factory spindles.. You will have to machine down the drum brake bearing hubs to fit inside the Camaro disc rotors or you can buy a kit that will includes the machined hubs and mounting brackets.. I believe the only other thing you are going to have to change is your wheels. You'll need to step up to 17" wheels to clear the larger brakes..
 

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Google: LS brake swap... there's stuff on here, YouTube and all over the internet... get the calipers and brackets used on eBay or at a wrecking yard, rotors on eBay... front caliper bracket adapted from church boys (I think its the same as a first gen)... not too sure about the rear... but it's a great, economical brake upgrade.
 
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