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79 455 into 70skylark


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I am looking for a donor car to get a 455 is there particular years that fit or dont fit and are there years i should stay away from

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thanks the engine is a 76 <BR>sorry I can't type very well.<P>How bad are the late 455's it will be replacing the 350 HC 315 HP 1970 engine.

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If you use your short block, and use 70 type pistons( 10:1 compression} and 70 455 or 430 heads, you will be ahead of the game because the crankshaft is crossed drilled from the factory, where the 70 is not....better oiling.Of course you need to get a hipo cam to complete this combo...good luck..

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  • 2 weeks later...

stay away from late 73, to 76 buick engines. they really dropped in horse power and torqe you would be better off building the 350 because it has more power than the 76 455.

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i have a nice pair of 1970 455 heads w/factory oversize valves. would recommond valve job before installing. will sell complete w/arms,shafts, and covers for $225. thanks, Bones

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You could build a 350 cheaper than a 455 and still have more horse power than the 455. Put the same amount of money in both engines and the 350 would come out on top because the parts are cheaper, so, you could do more to the 350 than the 455 and plus the 350 is lighter. cubic inches doesn`t always mean better. you have to look at both sides, OLD GUY!

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HELLO! I think there's a loose sprocket somewhere in this message board... #1, the 455s were not much heavier than the 350s and #2, the 455s are they way to go if you want power. In fact, it is cheaper to build a 455 (bang for buck) than a 350, otherwise we'd all be yanking our big blocks out for the smaller ones (rather than visa-versa).<P>Am I really taking the time to explain this? I had assumed it was a given.

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Thanks for the input I am working a number of different options and have come to the conclusion that the big block is the way to go. particularly after having it out today. It looks great goes pretty good but I want it to go . now I need to find one, plus the rearend with some decent gears.I am trying to make a deal for a 72 455 gs the body is shot but I want the drive train, suppose I could sell the hood and grill to help pay for it. Otherwise I will need to peice it together 3.55gear range to much for a sreet car?

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I agree with the 455 being the better option to go with. I have an 81 buick 350 sitting in my garage in pieces replaced with a 76 350 I am looking at buying a 72 riv crunched and cheap with a 455. I have priced out the parts and the 350 is a bit of a pain in the butt. I think some people are confusing the BUICK 350 with a dirt cheap chev. For those in the know NOTHING is remotely similar between a buick and any other GM motor. Why do you think we have to go to the specialty Buick parts places and not 7-11 for parts.

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Just to make things clear, WE ARE COMPARING TWO BLOCKS, THE 76 455 WITH THE 70 350, NOT ALL 350'S AND 455'S!!!! In all actuality if you know anything about Buick engines, you would know that the 70 model 350 was built twice as good as the 76 model 455. If you would break out your buick books,you would see how much cheaper the parts are for the 350's compared to the 455's. Just think about it, if the 70 350 had more power from the factory,(300+ compared to 200+ from the 76 455) and you put equal amounts of money into each block,which do you think would come out on top? (consider cost, remember 350 parts are CHEAPER) The 70 350 block was built better than the 76 455,because of the major drop in HP and torque through those years. Now OLD GUY do you get the picture???

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Now I'm not saying that 350's are all out better than the 455's. I, myself run a 430 BB I'm just saying in this situation, the 70 350 would be the way to go. (Not to hurt anyone's feelings)<P><BR>

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That is really a great site Brent, super job of telling the stories of your cars. smile.gif <P>------------------<BR>buickfam@aol.com<BR>Life long Buick Fan.<BR>1965 Skylark H/T<BR>1965 Gran Sport Convertible<BR>1948 Chevy Pickup with 401 Buick.

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If I might also say that it is my understanding that starting in 1972 HP was measured at the back of the tranny not the flywheel like 71 and earlier models. This drastically brings down the HP numbers. I also believe this was partly due to the insurance regs when it came down to it. Anybody actually done a dyno on any of these motors in a shop? Anyone ever fudge their numbers a little on their 1/4 m times. 14.29 is closer to 14.3 than it is to 14.2? Eh?

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I applaud the idea to go with the 455. Though the 1976 motor would not be as powerful as the 1972 motor, it still is the basis on which to build. I don't want to hammer on Buick 350s, but they are not the same as the Chevys, which have had quite a successful hot-rodding heritage.<P>Take a bone stock 1970 350 and a bone stock 1976 455. Perhaps the 350 is more powerful. Now, find yourself an old long block 430-455 from around 1969 to 1973 (1970 being the most desirable). It's not unheard of to score such an engine, or even beat up car, for $500 or less. (For sake of arguement, that we won't bother just rebuilding the older block and motor). Now take the heads, crank, pistons, cam, etc. from the older motor and have them cleaned up and install them into the 1976 block. That's probably around $1200. That would not including basic rebuild costs, which would also apply to the 350, but would including the purchase of the old big block. What have we got? At least 350 horses and 500 ft lbs. (if not more). Anybody here have a formula for a 1970 Buick 350 that will pump out those numbers with a budget of $1200? I think it near impossible without using forced induction or alternative fuels.<P>I had a 1971 350 in my Skylark and replaced it with a 1969 400. Power was dramatically increased.<BR> <A HREF="http://homepages.infoseek.com/~bejara_wbs/oldcars/skylark.html" TARGET=_blank>http://homepages.infoseek.com/~bejara_wbs/oldcars/skylark.html</A> <P>

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Now you see, you would have to go through all that trouble on the 76 block just to keep up with the 70 350 block, which doesn`t need different parts to make it stronger. It came from the factory like that!

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I am not going to argue anymore about 350s vs 455 ,but I,ve been building engines for quite a while, and a 455 and a 350 cost almost the same for parts and when I can get 105 cubic inches free ,I,m going to take them. The 76 455 with a cam will outpull a 350 with a cam, headers, intake manifold and ignition ,so whats more cost effective??

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Your so full of crap, OLD GUY! They`ve already proven that the 75 and 76 455, just with a cam, Is no match to a 70 to 72 350 with headers, cam, and intake. not including ignition! If you don`t beleive me, call TA performance because they are the ones that did it! You need to read up on your buick stuff, because all thats coming out of your mouth is crap! Are you that old, guy!!!

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There are very few good parts for a 350, the folks that make them run fast have put alot of work into doing just that. With a little investment in a cam, intake, heads etc. ANY 455 can run with the BIG guys, even the low compression, low-lead engines from 76, and contrary to everyone's belief the later model blocks are prefered because of the better oiling due to larger pickup and oil galleys, which can be fixed on the '70 blocks too. I've seen several 350s run in the 11s, with big big bucks invested to do it, and I've seen many more 455s to it, for about half as much.<BR>and Sprocket why don't you register if you are going to be a regular instigator on this board? <P>------------------<BR>

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sprocket, i am afraid you are just plain wrong. go look at your buick book and notice how the horsepower listed for the 70 to 72 350 is considerably higher than the 73 and later 350. now when you figure out what gross and net horsepower mean, you will understand why that later 455 makes less power _on_paper_. in the real world, ANY california smog motor 455 will spank i 350 of similar cost.<P>there is no substitute for effective cubic inches in a street driven vehicle (notice the word 'effective' ie, turbo and super charged are higher)<P>oh- why is it that everyone in this thread is saying calmly '455' and there is one guy running around calling people names cause he owns a 350 :)<P>allan

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I've put a 1976 455 from a LeSabre into a 1971 Skylark that had a 350 2bbl. The swpa was easy, but if you're using headers they are a little tricky to install after the 455 is in (possible, though because I did it). The '76 455 should have a good HEI ignition and will run well with a new cam. Obviously rebuilding it and getting stage 1 heads will really wake it up. Remember that 1972 on the HP rating were measured differently and cannot be compared with the earlier ratings.

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Wouldn't it be fun to take a "1970 350" and a "1976 455" installed in identical cars, let's say a couple of early '70s 'Larks, and set 'em up head to head? Best out of seven runs? Three turns in each car for each driver with a "rubber match" if needed? That would take all of the specualtion out of this discussion.<P>But since we're speculating... I'll say that the high compression 350 (vs. the low compression 455) will probably be faster in a quarter mile race in identical cars with identical gears and indentical tires. The 350 will rev faster (lighter reciprocating mass and high compression) and get into the power band more quickly. However, if the driver in the 455 car launches better and hooks up quickly that car would stand an excellent chance of beating the car with the smaller, more powerful motor, which in all likelyhood will be harder to launch without going up in smoke. A *real* challange would be to equip the cars with open differentials and a four speed box... driving skill would then become a major factor. Set up like that the 455 car might just win! Fun to bench race, isn't it?<P>One thing to remember in all of this is that it is supposed to be fun to own, talk about, build, trade advice, and work on our cars. Name calling and defensive attitudes on this board take some of that fun away...<P>My two cents...<P>Matthew

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Read a little more of the thread...<P>I think 3.55 is a *great* ratio for the street. I have a buddy with a 1970 Duster 340 which has an automatic and 3.54s. Perfect ratio for running around town and country. I wouldn't want to drive this car cross-country at 70-75 mph, however.<P>Matthew

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  • 3 weeks later...

Put this in your pipe and smoke it sprocket Bone stock unopened 76 455 in a 68 skylark . ran 14.0s castiron ex. manifolds& int. I cleaned up the eng. rebuilt carb. recurved the dist. th400 3.55 rear out of a pontiac. had $900into whole powertrain.try that with any year 350 car weighed 3700# and on 235-60-14 street tires &stock hubcaps !! PS OLDGUY is smarter than you will ever be<P>------------------<BR>Sean Etson

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there is something wrong with that 455, cause I have a 67 skylark with 350, RV cam, 469 lift 280 dur and allum. intake. Everything else is stock as a box of rocks, 2:73 gears! 205 70 15 tires, and I run consistent 13.98s. Go figure. grin.gif

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I just completed a 350->455 swap in my newly aquired 71' skylark. I prefer the 75-76 short block for a street/strip buick. I built my motor on a $1600 budget. I did cheat and used a set of 430 heads(a little worked) from my 69' GS race car and my extra KB headers. build as follows..<BR>Jim burek's new fast ramp street cams, 226/236 by .498/.506. idles at 700. Only 6% overlap so there is some crank case presure.<BR>Speed pro pistons, cheap, $300.Recurved HEI. TA SP1 intake.<P>I've built this car to drive daily, gets 16 miles/gallon with the 2.76 gears and well don't tell, spool.<P>This past weakend my brother tried to put it on the fresh buick with his high 11sec. mustang(alum. heads,roller,stroker). The buick won by 4 cars!!!<P>Got a 350-4 cheap, anyone...

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A facts for this discussion. The 75'-76' motors differed only in the heads, larger chamber size. This lowered the compresion to 7.9:1. Also these heads had large bulges in the intake ports for larger push rod reliefs. These heads are not that hot for performance applications. Although usefull when building street strokers. By putting early heads on this motor the compression is the same as 71'-74' motors (8.5:1). 76' motors also used the .040" head gaskets. Use .020 copper gaskets to up this to 9:1. Don't use the 70' metal shim gasket, dosn't fit your motor. This combo is stronger then early motors and will run harder then any except the 10:1 70' motor, but yours could use cheap gas.

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