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question for you engine builder guru's

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by jp0863, Nov 17, 2006.

  1. jp0863

    jp0863 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    i have a small block 400 that i was going to use, but have since changed my mind. now i am going to sell it but need to know what it's worth. i have done a little research and found that it is a somewhat rare block even as 400's go, with the 010 (15 tin) 020 (2% nickel) stamped on the rear. the engine is in great running condition and has been rebuilt, but unknown number of miles on it... very low though, whatever it is, cuz it was only driven about a year after the rebuild then sat for awhile.. anyhow, if this is somewhat rare for a chevy engine... what's it worth?
     
  2. 1977k5

    1977k5 3/4 ton status Vendor

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    ~$400. I am even more trusting on rebuilds than a lot of people.
     
  3. pauly383

    pauly383 Daddy383 Staff Member Moderator

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    To me its worth 50 to 100 bucks , sure they are rare , but it needs to be checked to see if there is anything left for an overbore ..... its already been rebuilt once .

    And there are aftermarket alternatives now , not only to aftermarket blocks , but in general performance goodies altogether . You don't really need that block to make good torque anymore .
     
  4. blazinzuk

    blazinzuk Buzzbox voodoo Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    This might be the wrong crowd to ask. I might put it up on ebay to sell it. I pretty much consider every engine needs rebuilt unless I get to see it run in something. I think I would pay 300 bucks if I trusted the person selling it.

    I would think the best place to sell it would be to a local racer that is competing in a stock class where they only allow motors that came stock in your car or truck. Mud racers in a stock class would probably be your best bet
     
  5. MaxPF

    MaxPF 1/2 ton status

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    Gotta agree with Pauly on this one. 383's can easily make over 400lbs/ft torque from 2500RPM on up, and you don't have the hotspotting of the siamesed block. Besides, 350 4 bolt blocks are common as dirt, and everyone makes the stroker crank for em. I don't see the point in paying a premium for an extra 17 cubic inches. But that's just me :D For that matter, anyone with an otherwise good condition 350 can get 400+lbs/ft at around 3500RPM and a relatively flat torque curve with nothing more than heads, cam, and manifold change...
     
  6. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    If you can find anyone that believes the high nickel/tin block myth, maybe they'll pay more, but since 383's are so common, as already mentioned, I don't think you'll see it net much money.

    Before anyone wants to start a pissing contest about the high nickel/tin blocks, bring out the metallurgy results or GM documentation that proves those casting numbers mean anything. :)

    Old timey second hand race track knowledge doesn't count.
     
  7. MattK

    MattK 1/2 ton status

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    not that i really care, but just to be fun, can you bring out the metallurgy results or GM documentation that they don't mean anything?
     
  8. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    gm's tech manual

    as soon as i can get to a scanner i will scan the page where it tells you if it has 010 and 020 that it has 1%more tin and 2%more nickle than a regular production block.....if it has only the 010..that means it has 1% more nickle, and this is out of a gm tech manual that tells you how to race prep a sbc a bbc a cosworth 4 cylinder and also how to prepare a corvette chassis for road racing, i will post it in the next couple of days, show you the cover and the text!...its no myth!

    btw alot of people will also tell you a 400sbc never had a 4 bolt main, but they did from '70-72, the others from 72 to '80 are all 2 bolt mains, so if you have a 10/20 4 bolt block its worth quite abit if it hasn't been bored to its limit!
     
  9. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Of course not. I don't go around claiming things that I only know by hearsay, therefore I'm not going to blindly believe just because it seems to be a commonly held notion. I know for a fact what a casting number means, or what a suffix code is, or the partial vin, or the casting date, or any foundary markings, however there is nothing even close to official that I've *seen* or even heard alluded to that proves the 010/020 theory, especially since you can find the same castings with or without those numbers, as well as blocks with only 010, or only 020, or both, and in wildly varying applications. Unlike even the 2/4 bolt main application issue.

    I've heard the same "information" about how superior Cadillac or Oldsmobile blocks are (because of superior metallurgy) yet there is nothing to back this up either.

    I don't accept anything as fact just from being in a magazine, as there are far too many inaccuracies there as well. Seen the same "quality" information in magazines, but no proof that it wasn't just hearsay they printed. Not like the 'net is a failsafe source of information of course, but it's a good way to share FACTS that might otherwise be unknown.

    Don't get me wrong, I'd be very excited to see some real testing or official GM literature proving it's the real deal, but I challenge anyone to find that material, as I haven't. :)

    If you've got the material, post up, as it could be used by the original poster to indicate he indeed does have something somewhat rare and potentially worth more money!
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2006
  10. MattK

    MattK 1/2 ton status

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    hmmmmmm where exactly is this #? ive got a 400. is it simply the engine cast#? cuz i know where that one is.
     
  11. 4X4HIGH

    4X4HIGH 1 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    The numbers that everyone is talking about i've only ever seen them on the front of the block under the timing cover area. I myself have heard the myth about high nickle bla bla bla and i don't believe a word of it either unless someone does verify this with actual GM info as Dorian says.
     
  12. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    The numbers are cast in various locations about the block. The most common location is on the surface behind the flywheel/flexplate, but IIRC, they can also sometimes be found in the timing chain area, and/or on the sides of the block.

    Yet another reason to question their meaning...everything else I can think of on a GM block (casting numbers, dates, suffix/VIN codes) is in a standard location, but the 010/020 aren't. I've heard similar rumors that they somehow indicate something about the mold that was used, but I know very little about the casting process and why that would be beneficial.
     
  13. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    the# is found

    under the timing chain cover on the drivers side of the engine and also on the passenger side in the bellhousing cover area under the flexplate. my info isn't coming from a magizine, its a genuine gm tech manual and it tells you that 010/020 is a 1% more tin and 2% more nickle than regular castings, it also states that if it only has 1 # such as 010 that is nickle content, no extra tin only 1% more nickle. i will scan the cover and the page that states this so you can see that its a gm tech manual, only thing i have no where to post it up so if some1 will give me their email, i will email you the pics and you can post the pics for me, ....huh, ok?
     
  14. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    why that would be beneficial

    the extra nickle makes the block harder and you can tell it by ring groove a 10/20 block won't have near as much as a regular casting. i forgot it is also sometimes on the side of the block. 400 sbc has 3 "freeze plugs" people call these that because sometimes they push out before the block cracks but the plugs are actually to let the sand out of the block after it has been cast, and the 400 has siamesed cylinders thus they had to add the extra plug in the center. and also 400 blocks if you feel down the side where these plugs are you can feel the bores rounding out the side of the block where as a 350 will be flat if you run your hand down the side there. i've been involved in building some high dollar engines as i worked for pro block in memphis tenn. as i went thru college and i got this tech manual from a customer who let me borrow it , then i never saw him again, it was released by gm in the early to mid 70's
     
  15. 4X4HIGH

    4X4HIGH 1 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    Not all 400 blocks have 3 freeze plugs on the side. There also is no given as to which were 2 bolt or 4 bolt as some people seem to think that the 3 freeze plug blocks were all 4 bolt main. This is not true.
     
  16. beater_k20

    beater_k20 Banned

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    well, if you have said book, please by all means, post up the information in question from said book. scan the cover while you're at it.

    oddly enough, i've never seen a block that didnt have at least "010" on it, hell even the 4.3 V8 (yes V8) i had to rebuild in high school shop class had it.

    the one that gets me are the guys that have 39700010 blocks, and think that because the casting number ends in "010" means they have some ultra rare engine that came out of a 69 Camaro... no... you have a block that was produced between 1967 and 1979, and offered in anything from a family sedan, to a pony car, to a medium duty truck.
     
  17. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    3970010 is a casting # and is gm most common block it came in everything from vettes to pickups, and it came in 2 and 4 bolt main blocks and if you've had many of the 3970010 blocks you will have noticed that the casting # on these blocks are of 2 different sizes....one being a smaller regular looking # and then there is blocks with the same casting # that the # is twice as big as a normal casting # and the top of the 3 seems to be missing ,these are the blocks to have(with the large casting #), but thats not the 010 that states the content of the mixture of the cast metal, i find it hard to believe youve never seen a bloock with out these #'s
    i see them all the time and when i find a 010/020 block and it has a rebuild left on it i scoop it up. i tried to take a pic of the book the cover came out good but when i tried to take a pic of the text inside it's too blury to read
    i got a pic of the table of contents, but the regular text you can't read....i'll be glad to email these pics to you, and if any1 has the "pocketbook of smallblock casting #'s" it also states what the 010/020 stands for. and it is in standardized places on the block they are always on drivers side under timing chain and on passenger side under the flexplate the only place it fluctuates is on the outside on the block by the freeze plugs, and thats the # that is denoting a certain casting mold its not the same as the number under the timing chain and the flex plate.
     
  18. fireplug

    fireplug 1/2 ton status

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    Aren't the two bolt mains more preferable with the 400 sbc?
     
  19. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    not sure about that, but i know they say a 2 bolt main is safe up to 750hp!
     
  20. blazin_blazer

    blazin_blazer 1/2 ton status

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    heres the cover and table of contents, we are closed all week for thanksgiving but next week i will scan the text, because i took these with a camera and the text is just to blurry to read...but i think you can get in this, you probally have never seen this book either, but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist!

    http://s139.photobucket.com/albums/q303/professor_bowtie/
     

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