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3K for a built 406 SB...

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by rjfguitar, Sep 26, 2003.

  1. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    Tim(84chevyK10) and I got into an argument that I got totally raped on my recently built 400sb. What do you guys think?
    MODS & PRICES are:
    $300 for 400 standard bore long block, 2bolt main
    $950 for all new gaskets, bearings, forged pistons(9.2:1), complete machining to block, crank and rods.
    $100 for comp cams 268H 218 dur., 454" lift, smog legal here in cali.
    $600 for complete rbuild of my 400 heads with some PORTING done, manley stainless steel valves, 1.94intake, 1.75 exh.
    $120 Edelbrock performer intake shipped to door
    $350 for edelbrock performer q-jet
    $75 for externally balanced 400 harmonic balancer
    $50 for externally balanced flexplate
    $170 for summit distributor
    $50 for K&N filter
    $125 for gasket sealer, exhaust donuts,paint, odds and ends
    That brings it to $2,890, just a hair under 3K, that price is with the motor completely done and running. FYI. I assembled the engine myself to save a few$$$. So did I get raped, fair, or cheap. keep in mind that it is a 400 and is not interchangeble for the most part with other SB.I think it is good for around 350to 400HP. Here is a pic of the K5 the motor is in [​IMG]
     
  2. TrcksR4ME

    TrcksR4ME 1/2 ton status

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    When it comes down to it, when you have work done by other people (shops) it is never gonna be cheap. If you could do it yourself, you would and that would save the most money. I think the only way to answer your question is whether or not you are happy with it and if you feel the money was well spent. It is your truck, you drive it, when it comes down to it other peoples opinions dont mean $hit as long as you are happy /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    PS: Doesn't sound like you were raped to me, 3k for a good strong engine sounds reasonable
     
  3. SUBFAN

    SUBFAN 1/2 ton status

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    Tou got raped on the heads....With some careful shopping you could have gotten a better flowing set of big valve aftermarket heads for about a 100 bucks more....

    The machining done on the block was within 200 of what my last motor ran....Did it get align bored, squared, decked, and bored with the torque plates? That easily adds some sash to the build up.

    Tim has to keep in mind that you replaced or rebuilt everything instead of reusing some of your old parts. Sure money could be saved by running your old distributer, balancer, intake and carberater, but you are starting out with everything new, and that will kepp the grin facter high for a long time....

    I will let you know what mine will cost next year when I put it together....Keeping in mind that I have a fair amount of parts already stockpiled that I have already gotten for free or on a trade, so those costs will be difficult to determine. An example is a Performer RPM manifold....
     
  4. SF87K5

    SF87K5 1/2 ton status

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    It sounds like you got a good deal. I do agree with SUBFAN, the heads price seems a little high. But all and all sounds good to me. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    How do you like the summit HEI distributor and the edelbrock performer q-jet? I am rebuilding my 428 into a 455 and was thinking about using both of these on that motor. Its going into my 85 K5. Please let me know the pluses and negatives about both of these. Thank you.
     
  5. Greg72

    Greg72 "Might As Well..." Staff Member Super Moderator

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    .....it's generally not hard to find a someone willing to do a lower quality job, at a lower price.



    I am seldom impressed by how CHEAP people claim to be able to do things. CHEAP is not a good yardstick for measuring quality. Good mechanics don't work for free, parts suppliers with quality parts rarely give them away.

    While it's important not to "overspend" on the good stuff (you can still shop for the best price on item "x"), there are limits to how much $$$ you can save once you've decided to do a quality job.



    sorry for the rant. /forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif
     
  6. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

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    $3k for that engine sounds quite reasonable Bobby. /forums/images/graemlins/deal.gif

    I have close to $3500 in my 388. I reused the factory block and previously purchased S/R Torquer heads. Pretty much everything else was purchased new....crank, rods, pistons, rings, cam-lifters, valve springs, bearings, ARP fasteners everywhere etc.

    In all, I had about $750 in machine work and the rest was parts. I ported and rebuilt my heads myself as well as assembling the long block.

    I've got to agree with Greg, cheaper isn't necessarily better. Just because you can get a $600 Autozone special doesn't mean it is a good engine. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  7. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    I totally agree with greg and beast, YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR, which spending to much for what you have can happen but generaly I have found that it takes a lot of money to have "nice" things and not a "new" component with just gathered used parts. As far as the heads it was 500 for the rebuilt heads and stainless valves but added a 100 worth of porting to the exhaust

    SUBFAN, you said $$$ can be saved on stuff like the balancer and flexplate, It is a 400 and is externally balanced and I had to buy those 2 new. they are not interchangeable with a 350, there was little hiddent costs like that with a 400. /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif /forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif Tim thought it would take 15k to build a Top Truck Rig, I think it would cost much more, what do you guys think?
     
  8. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    [ QUOTE ]

    How do you like the summit HEI distributor and the edelbrock performer q-jet?

    [/ QUOTE ]
    I like the distributor, seems to deliver plenty of spark, can't tell a big difference really and I hate the edelbrock q-jet because the choke and high idle just quit working along with a nice little stumble when I floor it at about 1500 to 2000RPM's. These are probably just adjustment issues though. I do have to admit that I went up a STEEP!! hill the other day(my square sub box rolled /forums/images/graemlins/eek.gif) and it would kind of stumble just a little when I hammered on it going up but it would recover and not die. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  9. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    The heads was definitely something I comment on him getting raped on.

    The $3k total I told him I thought was steep BEFORE it was mentioned that carb, distributor, flexplate, balancer etc. was included in that price. Typically when I think about rebuilding an engine, I consider all the bolt on stuff seperate from the cost, but I suppose if it's replaced at the same time it all comes out of pocket anyway.

    I still think it's a little steep to spend that much on a motor and still have a turned crank and resized factory rods. Everyone here that is saying that they spent this amount and that amount seems to all have got a new crank/rods for their bottom end.

    As to a $600 AZ special, I wouldn't know if that's correct or not. I'd rather be stuck with used engines until I can afford to have my machinist do a block for me and I can get started on my own motor. I figure that will be a final expense.

    I'd calculated $3k to build a 383 which would be similar to rjfguitar's 406 except with aftermarket heads, more compression, and a bigger cam. However, that was with a NEW crank/rods hypereutectic pistons as I don't like forged piston and I wouldn't buy them if they're not necessary.

    Then again...that was $3k WITHOUT carb, tin, flywheel, balancer, etc. So I suppose if you include all those items, getting any well rebuilt motor with a balance job, even if it's a 350 is a good deal.

    Hell, what's the GM 350 deluxe (the one that comes complete carb to pan) cost? $2400? Somewhere in that neighboorhood and that's not going to be balanced or make anywhere near the power that a 400 sbc had.
     
  10. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    How do you like the summit HEI distributor

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Danny, I have a Summit HEI as well and like it. The only problem I had was that the rotor was limiting the mechanical advance. I just swapped rotors and all was well. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  11. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    The heads was definitely something I comment on him getting raped on.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Spending $600 on rebuilt heads isn't ideal because you can get a great set of new heads for $700 on up. But, if you add up what Bobby probably has in the heads it isn't that bad.

    Valve job = $300-$400
    SS valves = $200
    Port work = $100+

    That is at least $600 right there. Not too far out of line. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  12. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    Until you realize that you can get aftermarket heads for that price and EVERY set of 400 SBC stock heads suck. There's no reason to even mess with a set of stock heads for a big cube small block. There's only one option in my opinion and that's aftermarket.
     
  13. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Spending $600 on rebuilt heads isn't ideal because you can get a great set of new heads for $700 on up

    [/ QUOTE ]

    [ QUOTE ]
    Until you realize that you can get aftermarket heads for that price

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Uh-hu.....that's what I said. /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     
  14. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    [ QUOTE ]
    Uh-hu.....that's what I said. /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif

    [/ QUOTE ]

    And then you went on to say that it wasn't too out of line to spend $600 on stock heads. I say that's a complete waste of money. I wasn't doubting that you'd mentioned the aftermarket heads at all, simply that it is insane to spend $600 on stock stuff when you can get aftermarkets in that price range.
     
  15. sdavid

    sdavid 1/2 ton status

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    There is no price on happiness and to get what you want. Also if rjfguitar had the money to do it, then what's the hold up. You can't apply what your budget allows to someone elses choices. Sounds like he got exactly what he wanted and it performs well. While most of us talk about building the "big one" one day, he did it. More power to him.
     
  16. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    [ QUOTE ]
    There is no price on happiness and to get what you want. Also if rjfguitar had the money to do it, then what's the hold up. You can't apply what your budget allows to someone elses choices. Sounds like he got exactly what he wanted and it performs well. While most of us talk about building the "big one" one day, he did it. More power to him.

    [/ QUOTE ] Thank you /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif I couldn't afford To build a WAY pumped aftermarket everything motor, so I decided to go with a big cubed motor with some upgrades and it has plenty of power. As far as the heads I wish I would have gotten vortecs drilled out but too late now. I don't think my heads flow that bad becuase they have a 1.94 valve and that isn't bad for a milder motor like mine. 2.02's are nice but are great for bigger cammed motors. Plus mine are ported a bit. I would like to hear from someone that has built a 400. I did numerous number punching between building a 350 and 400 and the 400 was quite a bit more.I am pretty happy with my motor and think it makes good power compared to the money. A lot of muscle car guys say it takes $10 per horsepower to build a motor, I am way under that. /forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

    Oh and I forgot I had the motor fully balanced also /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  17. Beast388

    Beast388 1/2 ton status

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    [ QUOTE ]
    I am pretty happy with my motor and think it makes good power compared to the money.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    That is all that matters......regardless of what anyone else's opinion is. /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  18. SUBFAN

    SUBFAN 1/2 ton status

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    I have built a 400 motor, and I am building another one next summer....Sure it costs a bit more, but then again we aren't going to settle for a set of $20 pistons either....

    I put in 5.7" rods, had the aftermarket heads drilled for steam holes, KB pistons etc....I don't mind spending a bit more for the fatter torque curve. If I found a 455 Pontiac, I would trade the 400 sbc for it, that would cost a bit more, and have a fatter torque curve yet

    You did fine with your motor, now just save up for a set of AFR 190 heads and hang on.... /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     
  19. 84_Chevy_K10

    84_Chevy_K10 Banned

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    If you have had your heads flowed or know how to locate a GM headflow file for them I will run your setup in DD 2000.

    It's not so much the valve size that makes aftermarket heads better most times. Hell, Vortecs outflow any stock casting just about and have 1.94/1.50 valves. Not to mention the combustion chamber design, etc.
     
  20. rjfguitar

    rjfguitar 3/4 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    [ QUOTE ]
    You did fine with your motor, now just save up for a set of AFR 190 heads and hang on.... /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif

    [/ QUOTE ] How do they compare to a set of merlin heads, how much are they , and how much extra HP than my current heads? /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif /forums/images/graemlins/ooo.gif
     

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