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help with a Buick 455


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I need advice on the Buick 455, what works and doesn't work. What companies make a good aftermarket intake, heads, ignition, headers, and maybe EFI or what used parts should I look for? The motor is from a 72 wildcat. What I am building is a 70 chevelle with a Buick 455, could use some ideas about the the motor, know nothing about Buick motors. I read somewhere that a short water pump works and fits better in the GM A-bodies than the long pump is this true? Also I have the brackets for the ps,ac,alt but no componets do these pieces interchange from the different divisions of GM, who's will work? I plan on replacing the 4 gear with a Richmond 6 speed, do the clutches interchange among the BOP's or are they engine specific? What mods should I make to get this Buick to become a real performer, any help would be much appreciated, Martinsr from Buick.net sent me to this site saying this is the place to get my questions answered. Thanks

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since you are new to buick motors, there are a few things that you should know. manual transmissions usually do not mix well with buick torque. that is why most GS's are autos. also the 6 speed bell housing will not bolt to the 455. you need a buick bell housing (which they do not make). also buick engines are not like 454's. there are different ways to go about making power. you do not need alot of gear in the rear end. 3.73 should be enough. also they do not make their power high in the RPM band. for most street strip engines (mid to low 12's), you do not need to go above 5500 rpm. there also isn't any dedicated buick 455 EFI setup (yet). TA performance is the best place to get good stuff. also join the Gran sport club of america. they have TONS of articles on building a killer 455. <P>the best thing to do is find out as much as you can before you start your project. i am not trying to be a buick snob, but the chevy engines and the buicks are different internally, and modifying them is a little different. you should not have to work too hard to get your chevelle into the low 12's. also no overboring the engine over 0.030. these motors have thinnner walls than the 454, so you will run into heating problems.<P>hope you build a kick ass 455!!<P>john<P>ps check out the buick gs club site at <A HREF="http://www.buickgsca.com" TARGET=_blank>www.buickgsca.com</A> wink.gif" border="0

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First of all thank you everyone, your info is very helpful but I still one lagging question. Riv1973 says that buicks dont't like manual trans. Correct me if I am wrong but don't BOPs automatic trans interchange, if the autos interchange why won't a bellhousing interchange? Also the richmond 6 speed is pretty much a muncie 4 speed with 2 extra gears added, so why what is work or am I missing something? If the manual trans idea is a no go, how about a 700r4, did buick ever make a automatic overdrive, does any one made a adopter plate? Highway cruising is more important to me than going fast in a straight line so I would like the 6 speed or the 700r4. Installing the buick pretty hinges on the tranny if I can't get the 6 speed or 700r4 to work, I probably won't install it. Any ideas on the tranny issue and once again Thanks.

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First of all thank you everyone, your info is very helpful but I still one lagging question. Riv1973 says that buicks dont't like manual trans. Correct me if I am wrong but don't BOPs automatic trans interchange, if the autos interchange why won't a bellhousing interchange? Also the richmond 6 speed is pretty much a muncie 4 speed with 2 extra gears added, so why won't is work or am I missing something? If the manual trans idea is a no go, how about a 700r4, did buick ever make a automatic overdrive, does any one make a adopter plate? Highway cruising is more important to me than going fast in a straight line so I would like the 6 speed or the 700r4. Installing the buick pretty much hinges on the tranny if I can't get the 6 speed or 700r4 to work, I probably won't install it. Any ideas on the tranny issue and once again Thanks.

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There are adapter plates to mount 700r4 to BOP engine, 200r4 are BOP mount (GN's use 200r4) some are chevy/BOP .200r4 can be built to take 455 torque check Art Carr performance. Sticks I dont know squat.

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maybe i was misunderstood. you can mount a 4-speed to a buick 455 with the right buick bell housing. but i researched a 4 speed in my car and people told me (almost universally) that if you take the car to the track, the tranny will not hold up. i have no personal experience, but alot of people have told me that. and from reading other people's threads, i think htat the problem with the six speed is that the bell housing does not mate to the buick motor. ifyou are interested in cruising, than the tranny issue is not a problem. install what you like ( i would personally keep the manual grin.gif" border="0) <P>sorry about the confusion.<P>john<BR>ps there is a nice thread on the manual tranny issue on the GSCA website under the performance section and the transmission and differential section.

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Good Choice!!!<P>My old GS (Picture on fvplating.com) At the track. The comment of using at least 3:73 gear is correct. The car has 3:9's and runs out of gear at the tail end of the quarter. But it still kills Hemi's. My brother bought the car in 94 and rebuit the engine. It does mid 12's and is capable of more with better carberation. Make sure you drill out the oil galleys. BB Buicks need better oiling on the bottom end.<P>Peter de Jong

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Skylarks were available with manual trans from the factory. Which one did they use?<BR> I agree with the above statements that manuals don't live with drag strip abuse, but they are so much cooler. Four-speed muscle cars are rare and usually go for $2000 more than automatics. <P>Were most muscle cars automatics or did the stick shift cars just get raced, crashed, and beat on more?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks everyone for the advice on the 455 swap. I have contacted TA and they set me in the right direction with the motor, we decided on building it close to the stage 1 specs for easy highway cruising. As for the tranny we also decided to go ahead and install the richmond 6 speed, richmond says the tranny will hold up to the 455 and live a happy life as long as I don't drag race it every weekend, but spanking the imports and the 454s at the red light is no problem! Once I get the motor done hopefully I will have pictures posted, but the body work is first, and nothing is worse than coming home from a long day at the body shop working on other peoples cars to work on your piece of junk. Thanks to all those who replied your help was very useful.

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Muscle cars are supposed to be beat up and primered. cool.gif" border="0 But I guess I can understand you wanting to make it look good because no one would go to your shop if they saw your car.

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Whats supposed to mean? I find nothing wrong with the idea of 455 6 speed powered 70 chevelle. I build my cars to enjoy and drive and perserve the hobby and encourge others to do the same to their cars cause they are not making them anymore

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I'm just saying that most of the really fast muscle cars I know of are really beat up because the owners put all there money into the engine. Its good that you are going to make the whole thing nice though. It'll be a bitchin car.

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