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Discussion Starter #1
Is anyone running a BBC in a 1978-1987 El Camino? If so answer the following questions:

what hp/torque?
gears size?
tranny size?
1/8 and 1/4 mile numbers?
what problems were encountered?

I have air so I've heard that I would have to modify my air conditioner box plus use shorty valve covers which I have.

I'm just trying to get a feel for what it would be like to put my 396 in my 78 Elky. I would guess my horsepower/torque to around 375/400.
 

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Back years ago in high school, a kid in my auto shop class had a 396 stuffed into a '78 Cutlass. The Cutlass had the same engine bay, G-body too. I don't remember how it fit (this was 11 years ago), but I can tell you that thing flew!!!! It would damn near bring the front tires off the ground when it launched. It was a very impressive running set-up! A 396 in an Elky would be killer!!! 8)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
My plans were to use this motor but I went with a 305 just to keep it a daily driver. I figured I would have to change everything(rearend, tranny) to handle the big block and really didn't have the money. But now I'm seeing some better days and it sounds like it might be the way to go.

If I could just get off the computer and go do something! :D
 

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The idea of a big block has grown on me, since I've been looking at buying a jet boat to restore, and it would be kind of cool if the car and the boat had the same motor. What issues would I run into stuffing a mild 454 into my 79?
 

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big block

I put a 427 in my 80 elc. a griffin radeator took care of the cooling.There was no room for headers but the stock mandiflods worked.The rear in was a 10 bolt posi .I put in 4.10 gears.A r700 trans, 3000 stall,the motor is 30 over. with a high lift cam.It ran 12s all day.I had a builded small block in the car but noting takes the place of big cubes!!!!
 

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I'm curious as to what kind of gas mileage your getting with a 427 and why there was no room for headers? I am still thinking of dropping in a 454 with a 4 speed manual. Hooker makes a set of headers for this swap.

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big block

gas mileage was,nt bad ,the r700 trans got over drive so if you aint running it hard its ok. I waited 2 weeks for those headers from hooker that they say will fit. Unless you are going to cut up the frame there is no room on the driver side.
 

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i was thinking about dropping in a 502ci ram jet or an ls-1 i still havent made up my mind. i will post pics and numbers when i do it. i would go with the 396 but im tired of having to deal with carbs and thier lack in power. good luck either way.
 

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phillyttops said:
i was thinking about dropping in a 502ci ram jet or an ls-1 i still havent made up my mind. i will post pics and numbers when i do it. i would go with the 396 but im tired of having to deal with carbs and thier lack in power. good luck either way.
Just a suggestion but.....

I read an article where SC took an LS1 opened it up, added a 383 Crank, notched the block, had 4 bolt caps drilled and installed. They beefed up the top by changing to AFR heads I think they were and changed cams. Had a company called "Jet Technologies" reprogram the computer chip with the new specs. It was pulling the tires up off the ground on launch in a Camaro.

If I am not mistaken they were producing something like 450 Hp @ 550 Lb./ft. of torque. In Hot Rod mag. I read an article that they had that someone had put a 502 in a 5th Gen Elky in front of a T56 6 speed. He said he was getting "17 Mpg @ 110 Mph!" :D

Hotfoot Humrich was in pig heaven with his combination. He tempered the 3.73 screw with the double overdrive (0.80, 0.62:1) and loved to drive this thing at 3,000 rpm in High gear—that equated to 17 mpg at 100 miles per hour!
Here is some reading along the lines of BBC.

http://www.gmhightechperformance.com/tech/0111gmhtp_pumping/

http://www.hotrod.com/techarticles/43599/

And this one is a swap into an 81 Elky with a 502 and the T56 Overdrive 6 speed manual tranny.

http://www.hotrod.com/techarticles/55938/index8.html

Have fun reading. :D
 

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How about this. It is a tight fit though. (see pics in gallery, or i'll post new one on request)
I've got what you want.
402 aka 396 out of a 72 camaro
HP (stock) [email protected] at the fly wheel
Torque [email protected]
TH 400 trans w/ shift kit
2.73 rear

Now with new heads and cam I ran what is in my signature.
Sorry, no HP #'s on the upgrade; CAUSE I'M NOT DONE!!!

ANY ?'s!!
 

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Rare? 5th Gen El Caminos are not rare--the General made a ton of them.
If you're talking about big blocks the only difference in all of the permutations' of the Gen IV big block is the bores and strokes. You couldn't tell the difference between a 396 and a 402 or between a 427 and a 454 without disassembling it. If you prefer to tell people you have a 396 then install a 454, save some money get at least another 50-60 hp over that 396 but tell everyone it's only a 396. Have fun!
 

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5th gens may not be rare in el Camino talk but they aren't like the billions of f-150's and the fact that they are not in production any-more adds a little bit of rarity, NO?. Plus mine isn't a 5th gen BB.
What are you running? Cause I guess you just don't understand.
Anyone else? I mean, am I off my rocker?
 

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no your not off your rocker. the 396 was the best engine GM ever made in my opinion. ok GM made alot of 5th gens. it is STILL an el camino. it is still different. it is still unique. there are not that many still on the road. at least around here. maybe GM had a huge marketing campaign on your little island, and sold a million, and elkys fill your roadways, but here in texas every other car isnt an el camino.
 
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