Chris Nelson· Registered
Made in China ? A lot of USA manufacturers moved to China !So I picked up a set of Edelbrock heads when I hopped up the 350 in my '82 a few years ago and even at the time of install I was surprised at how soft the aluminum of these heads were. Case in point I had an issue with one of the intake manifold bolt holes stripping out during initial assembly requiring a helicoil. Cut to 6 months later and one of the (apparently counterfeit) spark plugs I got online needed replacing and the threads on the spark plug hole came out with it. That was a whole endeavor in of itself getting fixed too, requiring the head to come off and get sent to the machine shop.
The last straw though occurred over this last weekend. The Chevy had been running quite well for a while at this point and with the weather briefly warming up I took the car out for a short jaunt to the auto parts store and back and then parked it up again. Then the next day I fired it up to go get breakfast with the Mrs. and heard a tick. Sounded an awful lot like an exhaust leak so I didn't think much about it. Of course during the drive I noticed that the car was definitely down on power and once home, I popped the hood and found that the tick was coming from the engine itself. Turns out once I pulled the valve covers that one of the rocker arm studs had actually pulled out of the head and the rocker was just loosely flopping in place! Bear in mind that all other rocker studs were tight still and the valvetrain hadn't been touched in a good long while.
I don't usually like to badmouth American companies but there are plenty of others online who have voiced their concerns about Edelbrock's quality control and this is the breaking point for me. It kills me that I don't have the time or funds to get the Elco's 6.0 LS ready for the swap yet so it looks like the 350 is getting a set of Vortec heads and will live to fight another day.