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Project Rocket Sled

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Project Rocket Sled

coronetsuperbee coronetsuperbee
New User | Posts: 6 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/08/12
05:24 PM

So, in one corner I have a 1985 Buick LeSabre Limited Estate Wagon with a junk Olds 307 and a 200-4R. And in the other I have a 1969 Olds 455 out of a Delta 88. And my plan is to swap engines after building the 455 and make it a street/strip pounder. Being my first solo engine build and not being terribly familiar with Olds engines, I have a few questions.

A) Does this combo sound fairly well matched?
Olds 455, 0.030" over.
Ported factory C heads with bit valves
10.5:1 Compression forged pistons
Polished stock rods with ARP bolts (Possibly shot-peened)
Stock crank (Possibly shot-peened)
Comp Cams Marine 292H cam (Their recommendation)
Edelbrock Torker intake

B) The 307 has an HEI distributor. Can I use this (with an upgrade kit) in the 455 and will it pack enough spark?

C)Will Sanderson 0455 short-tube headers fit in this chassis?

D)What oiling mods are required to make this thing live?

E)Will this thing handle the occasional 100hp shots of nitrous later on?

Sorry, I know it's a lot of questions but I want to make sure BEFORE I start ordering parts and bolting this thing together.  

pepsi1 pepsi1
User | Posts: 81 | Joined: 10/11
Posted: 02/10/12
06:44 PM

I had a 1986 Wagon like yours, and the 307 was a dog....

I then got a 1988 Pontiac Safari S/W. I purchased it from my company it had a 305 Chevy engine. I installed a 350 and 3:70 gears to pull my Race car. It was a different car. You need Rear Gears to move the weight. You could even go to a 3:90 or 4:00 gear. The tires are tall on those wagons. 235/75/15

Sounds ok for a real sleeper too.
Keep the compression under 10:1 gas!
The only thing you didn't mention is gears. That should have an 8.5 ring gear. So I would install atleast a 3:90 rear gear.

I don't know what to do with oil mods. See if you can pick up a HI-PO book by Joe Mondello he was the god of Olds engines. He past away last year.

NOS I don't like but I'm sure there are guys in the forum that will help you. Sounds like a very kool build. Take it to the track,and take home some money.

coronetsuperbee coronetsuperbee
New User | Posts: 6 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/13/12
10:39 AM

For the gears, I'm looking at runing a 4.30:1. With the planned 2004R, it'll launch like a TH400 with 4.82 but with the overdrive they will act like a 2.82. I already have the 200-4R so that's why I plan to build and use that  

gtomustang gtomustang
Enthusiast | Posts: 457 | Joined: 06/09
Posted: 02/15/12
06:27 AM

Pity you don't live near CT, I'd love to get my greasy fingers on that 307....engine masters series has had some luck with 'em, even with the window'd main webs and weak stock c'rods. 350 parts fit right in. but in something that heavy, yeah, you want inches.

anyway, I  believe 1985 was the year the 200R4 finally got good, but you won't need steep gears with its already steep First gear.  Its not the 700R4's 3.0 first, but its good enough. Pity also that 69 455 wasn't out of a toronado, it was the forged steel crank 390hp job hurst thru in its H/O.  Will have to check, you may still luck out on that crank.

nitrous and that high a CR will require some high octane fuel.

I think that small block HEI won't be long enough for a big block, but yes, an HEI properly built will do the job.  Davis Unified Ignition rebuilds 'em for fords, etc.

check, i think, its for oiling mods.  it will need 'em, b/c that crank has like 3" big mains, and that's a lot of surface area to cover.  
Just because you can't do it...doesn't mean its impossible

coronetsuperbee coronetsuperbee
New User | Posts: 6 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/16/12
10:32 AM

Yeah, the 307 could use a good home. Was rebuilt in the '90s but then the car got parked and it's never been run since the rebuild. As for the 200-4R being good that year, I don't know. My father had it rebuilt two or three times and it never shifted quite right.  

gtomustang gtomustang
Enthusiast | Posts: 457 | Joined: 06/09
Posted: 02/16/12
12:19 PM

that may have been due to an incorrectly adjusted TV cable burning the trans out.

check for author bill trovato, he has a book on olds engines thru SA publishers. he thought the forged steel crank was too heavy, the nodular one your engine most likely has is good for 600hp i think it was. but he probably has pics on the oiling mods.

also, since joe mondello died, apparently his company isn't as good as it used to be, PHR had 'em build a 455 for their 65 olds f85, and it just recently died due to oil starve. dick miller racing may be your better bet.

i figure the 307 is a better stand in on a rat rod for an olds rocket engine than some zz3 chevy with olds valve covers on it'll be lightweight like engines of that era were.  I think june 1990 PHR did an article on the engine. called "giant killer" tho in a tank of your weight its a race to see what would die first Smile lol  
Just because you can't do it...doesn't mean its impossible

coronetsuperbee coronetsuperbee
New User | Posts: 6 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/17/12
10:20 AM

I thought SAM built Project Olds' engine. If I were to build a Rat Rod I would rather use the Mercury 292 Y-block motor sitting in the garage corner than a 307 Olds.

Now, for my flywheel, should I run a heavier one or are the low gears in the tranny and rearend and tons of torque gonna be enough?  

gtomustang gtomustang
Enthusiast | Posts: 457 | Joined: 06/09
Posted: 02/21/12
01:17 PM

If I remember correctly, PHR sorta laid the blame on JMR, but I'm sure they don't really want to annoy a sponsor, if ya know what I mean...

Y-blocks are cool, had a 57'bird and still have the 56 vicky parts car we used, you probably spend some time at HAMB on and listened to the Y block on Porters video today...but those S ports look nasty to attempt a home porting job.  maybe a job for extrude honing...

as for the flywheel, the engine was designed to move 4000lb cars, so...I'd say a stock weight should be fine, since you want this to be a streeter as well as a stripper...  
Just because you can't do it...doesn't mean its impossible