Chevy Nova Forum banner

1 - 20 of 33 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I'm pretty much new, or a beginner, to engines and hopefully will begin working on my project this fall. It's just a general question I have to help me choose which engine to go for. So my dillema is that I would really like a Big block in my 74 (preferably a 502), but all of the people I have personally talked to highly suggested that I should go for a 383. I would really to go for a high torque, all motor engine and will be more for street/daily use. I understant that a big block build be more pricey to go about, but about how much would you say it would be?...also, I know this should be the last of my worries haha, but how much difference in mpg is the big block from the small block??...sorry for such a long post. It's just been itching my back. Any help would be HIGHLY appreciated.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
773 Posts
U building a street car or race car ? Remember you will need more hp for the big block to run the same speed because of the weight difference. I think the crate 502 are rated around 500 hp and you can build a small block making that much for less money then that big block. Just a thought. BUT I would have built a 496 stroker if it would have fit in my car !!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
U building a street car or race car ? Remember you will need more hp for the big block to run the same speed because of the weight difference. I think the crate 502 are rated around 500 hp and you can build a small block making that much for less money then that big block. Just a thought. BUT I would have built a 496 stroker if it would have fit in my car !!!!
It's going to be more of a street car. Well, basically I'd LOVE to have a racecar big block with stock interior. I just love the fun factor of a big block (which I've seen on youtube videos
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
if u go BBC ,,, the cooling system has to be top knotch ,, you can build both fast
Shouldn't everything be top-knotch with a BBC? Just wondering..also, I'd want lots of torque which Is why I'm leaning more towards the BBC..I'd don't know if you would know this, but would there be a significant difference in handling with a BBC than a SBC?..Both with upraged suspension, let's say, with Hotchkis (I don't know of any other)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks you guys! But I'd also like to add another question..how different would the handling be with a BBC than a SBC?..both with upgraded suspension, maybe hotchkis suspension..I would just like to know if there's a significant difference to where driving would become difficult.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,274 Posts
Thanks you guys! But I'd also like to add another question..how different would the handling be with a BBC than a SBC?..both with upgraded suspension, maybe hotchkis suspension..I would just like to know if there's a significant difference to where driving would become difficult.

The small block car will handle better. Less weight over the nose of the car. Honestly a 383 would be perfect for you.

4 bolt block .030 over
Forged rotating assembly with 10:1 forged pistons
Custom ground hydraulic roller cam
AFR 195 heads
Air gap intake
ProSystems 4150 custom built carb

= More power than you can handle on the street. It would be a tire shredding machine. With the right cam that combo should make upwards of 500hp fairly easy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
The small block car will handle better. Less weight over the nose of the car. Honestly a 383 would be perfect for you.

4 bolt block .030 over
Forged rotating assembly with 10:1 forged pistons
Custom ground hydraulic roller cam
AFR 195 heads
Air gap intake
ProSystems 4150 custom built carb

= More power than you can handle on the street. It would be a tire shredding machine. With the right cam that combo should make upwards of 500hp fairly easy.
Sounds great!..maybe I was just underestimating the power of the 383..no one really broke it down for me. Well anyways, thanks a lot for the help!..The Big Block might just have to wait until I get a bit more experience haha
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20,109 Posts
The small block car will handle better. Less weight over the nose of the car. Honestly a 383 would be perfect for you.

4 bolt block .030 over
Forged rotating assembly with 10:1 forged pistons
Custom ground hydraulic roller cam
AFR 195 heads
Air gap intake
ProSystems 4150 custom built carb

= More power than you can handle on the street. It would be a tire shredding machine. With the right cam that combo should make upwards of 500hp fairly easy.
X2, that is almost my recipe. Mine is 10.5:1 compression, AFR 195's, RPM intake w/1" wooden open spacer, Quickfuel 850 carb, Lunati Voodoo hyd. roller cam - 560/565 lift, 243/251 duration. Should go north of 500 horses. Regardless of engine size, horsepower is horsepower and your cooling system will need to be in good shape. Big block will be more nose heavy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
473 Posts
You could probably build a 421 or 434 Small block for less than the 502 and have a resonable 600 hp... And keep the weight off the front of the car.

Then lie to everyone and tell them its a 307.... With a cam.... :devil::D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
48 Posts
A couple other things to think about are if your car has the big a/c box under the hood like my 72 had, your not going to have much room to get to the plugs / etc on #6 and #8 cylinders. I know with my small block and headers, its still a bear to get to #8 plug

Finally if you are just learning, a small block is a little easier to work on. Lift one big block iron head or intake and you will know what I'm talking about lol.

Don't underestimate a small block. At the track through the years beat alot of big blocks (my old 377 took the win light many times and my current small block 427 has been 8.6's in the 1/4 with the help of turbos)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
601 Posts
small blocks make more torque than big blocks, big blocks make more straight horsepower. I have a 388 stroker (383 bored .60 over) and its a great engine, making over 430 hp. Big blocks also tend to be high maintence, and everything costs more for them, even something as simple as a set of valve covers. for a street car, i'd recomend a small block.

Good luck with whatever you choose to do!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
You could probably build a 421 or 434 Small block for less than the 502 and have a resonable 600 hp... And keep the weight off the front of the car.

Then lie to everyone and tell them its a 307.... With a cam.... :devil::D
So decieving! Haha I like the idea. I'll look into that!..Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Since you guys mentioned it, I'll be going for a Small Block (for now haha). Seems more reasonable. I'm still a bit confused though. I've been told that Big blocks give out more torque than small blocks? And is it possible to get 700hp out of a 383?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
601 Posts
i should have worded that differently...small blocks have the ability to make more torque than big blocks. I believe it has something to do with the amount of air that flows through the engine. Making high torque involves having the right combination. Im definitly not an expert though.

about making 700hp on a small block...my friend and mechanic (same people) race a 67 Nova with a 406 sbc. Thats a bored out 383. they make somewhere near 750hp. the car runs 9 second 1/4s on the motor alone. it'll go into the 8's with their nitrous setup.

Hope this helps you out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
473 Posts
Since you guys mentioned it, I'll be going for a Small Block (for now haha). Seems more reasonable. I'm still a bit confused though. I've been told that Big blocks give out more torque than small blocks? And is it possible to get 700hp out of a 383?
700 hp? ... yes will you like driving it much on the street?....no

A pump gas, streetable 406, 421 or 434 is a LOT more practical in the 5-600 HP range and a 500 hp 383 would be much more enjoyable

And even at those levels driveability will be comprimised somewhat and will require upgrading he rest of your car

Just my opinion and worth exactly what you paid for it
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,601 Posts
i should have worded that differently...small blocks have the ability to make more torque than big blocks. I believe it has something to do with the amount of air that flows through the engine. Making high torque involves having the right combination. Im definitly not an expert though.

about making 700hp on a small block...my friend and mechanic (same people) race a 67 Nova with a 406 sbc. Thats a bored out 383. they make somewhere near 750hp. the car runs 9 second 1/4s on the motor alone. it'll go into the 8's with their nitrous setup.

Hope this helps you out.
A modified small block can make more torque than a stock big block, but with similar modifications a big block should produce more torque and more HP than a small block.

You might want to consider an LS conversion since you're probably starting from scratch anyway :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
i should have worded that differently...small blocks have the ability to make more torque than big blocks. I believe it has something to do with the amount of air that flows through the engine. Making high torque involves having the right combination. Im definitly not an expert though.

about making 700hp on a small block...my friend and mechanic (same people) race a 67 Nova with a 406 sbc. Thats a bored out 383. they make somewhere near 750hp. the car runs 9 second 1/4s on the motor alone. it'll go into the 8's with their nitrous setup.

Hope this helps you out.
Ah ok I see haha. That definitely helped out and for my decision aswell lol. Thanks for the help man, means a lot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Thanks a lot for the help you guys. I guess I've made my mind up and I'm going for the small block! :).. I'll update you guys on the project as soon as I begin it lol..thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
61 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
700 hp? ... yes will you like driving it much on the street?....no

A pump gas, streetable 406, 421 or 434 is a LOT more practical in the 5-600 HP range and a 500 hp 383 would be much more enjoyable

And even at those levels driveability will be comprimised somewhat and will require upgrading he rest of your car

Just my opinion and worth exactly what you paid for it
Oh yea I know lol..I was actually going with a 383 already.. I just wanted to know if it was possible to produce 700hp with a small block...so basically, 500hp is good enough for street use?
 
1 - 20 of 33 Posts
Top