its time...

danzick

playing with fire
Feb 20, 2014
447
1
18
Livingston, MT
Hey all. Ive been busy! I found a core long block. I have it completely torn down. its time to start figuring out exactly what I should do with it. I was hoping the cylinders would clean up and not require any boring, but the engine sat long enough there is some slight pitting in one cylinder from moisture, so I dont think I can get away from boring it over. From some random measurements I took the bores were all from 4.0555 to 4.0565. I am on a budget with this build. I originally thought id shoot for a 800 hp capable engine, but that seems out of reach for me. I am now wanting to do a reliable engine to handle what I have now. I would say 600-700 for you sea level guys, but for me at 4500 ft its probably in the high 500's to mid 600. Here is a list of what I have come up with so far.

Mahle motorsport pistons + .020
lbz rods
Mahle H main and rod bearings
Mahle head gaskets
Head studs arp? not sure.
some sort of valve spring kit. socal?
Have the machine shop prep the block for whatever it needs
balanced rotating assembly
key the crank and cam
have both heads serviced
get the crank checked out and polished. There are some scratches in it. I hope its usable. (see picture)
60% injector nozzles

a couple things im wondering. Do I need pushrods? or are the stock ones ok?
can I use the core engine or my old engine oil pump and tear it down, check it over, and key it and shim it myself? or do i need to spend that 400 on a new one?
also, whats the deal with the welded water pump. Is that really necessary? I could also do that, but Im unsure about the need for that.

90% of the driving with this truck is on level 3 of my dsp. its not a race truck or a sled puller. I tow with it most of the time, and do the occasional sprinted street run. Id love to do some billet rods, but I don't think the extra 1700 is in the budget for them. maybe if I found a used set.

any recommendations on things I should do, or would be a good idea are appreciated!

attached a picture of my redneck engine stand haha. and the pitting in the cylinder.
 

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Bdsankey

Vendor
Vendor/Sponsor
Feb 1, 2018
2,600
171
63
Neenah, Wisconsin
Hey all. Ive been busy! I found a core long block. I have it completely torn down. its time to start figuring out exactly what I should do with it. I was hoping the cylinders would clean up and not require any boring, but the engine sat long enough there is some slight pitting in one cylinder from moisture, so I dont think I can get away from boring it over. From some random measurements I took the bores were all from 4.0555 to 4.0565. I am on a budget with this build. I originally thought id shoot for a 800 hp capable engine, but that seems out of reach for me. I am now wanting to do a reliable engine to handle what I have now. I would say 600-700 for you sea level guys, but for me at 4500 ft its probably in the high 500's to mid 600. Here is a list of what I have come up with so far.

Mahle motorsport pistons + .020
lbz rods
Mahle H main and rod bearings
Mahle head gaskets
Head studs arp? not sure.
some sort of valve spring kit. socal?
Have the machine shop prep the block for whatever it needs
balanced rotating assembly
key the crank and cam
have both heads serviced
get the crank checked out and polished. There are some scratches in it. I hope its usable. (see picture)
60% injector nozzles

a couple things im wondering. Do I need pushrods? or are the stock ones ok?
can I use the core engine or my old engine oil pump and tear it down, check it over, and key it and shim it myself? or do i need to spend that 400 on a new one?
also, whats the deal with the welded water pump. Is that really necessary? I could also do that, but Im unsure about the need for that.

90% of the driving with this truck is on level 3 of my dsp. its not a race truck or a sled puller. I tow with it most of the time, and do the occasional sprinted street run. Id love to do some billet rods, but I don't think the extra 1700 is in the budget for them. maybe if I found a used set.

any recommendations on things I should do, or would be a good idea are appreciated!

attached a picture of my redneck engine stand haha. and the pitting in the cylinder.
Studs: You need new head fasteners either way. Xotic is ~$90 more than TTY bolts and ARP is a couple hundred over bolts. Personally I'd go studs but this is a personal decision since the factory style TTY fastener will be just fine.

Springs: I use XDP/Manton or SoCal, hard to go wrong with either. The nice part with the XDP/Manton come with new locks incase one of yours decides to fly across the shop.

Pushrods: IMO anytime you increase spring pressure you should do pushrods. The OEM pushrods aren't the best to begin with and for the ~$300-$350 it's not a bad investment. Again, the Manton/XDP or SoCal stuff is my preference here.

Oil Pump: I would personally spend the money on a DHD or Wagler pinned/shimmed LBZ pump. Not only are they new from GM, the drive gear is pinned and they shim the relief to increase operating pressure.

Water Pump: If your water pump isn't very old/in good health then by all means weld it. If you're going to replace the water pump, this is another place where DHD's and Danville's modded pumps are hard to beat. They take a GM LBZ pump and weld the LB7/LLY hose barb to the new cover as well as drill the missing mounting hole in the water pump tab. They also include hardware to replace the front cover stud meaning you won't have to take the balancer off to change water pumps in the future.
 
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danzick

playing with fire
Feb 20, 2014
447
1
18
Livingston, MT
hey thanks. I know you recommended the push rods, but i thought maybe it was power that make them a necessary upgrade. I didnt even think about the valve springs. my water pump is pretty new. why the need for welding them?
 

Bdsankey

Vendor
Vendor/Sponsor
Feb 1, 2018
2,600
171
63
Neenah, Wisconsin
hey thanks. I know you recommended the push rods, but i thought maybe it was power that make them a necessary upgrade. I didnt even think about the valve springs. my water pump is pretty new. why the need for welding them?
The water pump impeller has a tendency to spin on the shaft and leave you with zero cooling. It’s common to weld both the cam side and the impeller side as that was the hot ticket until the resin impeller pumps proved to be far more reliable.
 

DAVe3283

Heavy & Slow
Sep 3, 2009
3,428
41
48
Boise, ID, USA
I personally think you could skip the pushrods, especially on a budget. I am running the SoCal beehive valve springs, have spun the motor as high as 4,800 RPM, and am using the stock 350,000 mile LB7 pushrods. I have over 50,000 miles on the built motor so far, and they are just fine.

Maybe I am just lucky, or the cam I use is easier on them than some other cams? But for $300+ savings, I'll risk needing to go back in one day and swap them out. Only should have to pull the valve covers and rockers, so easier than injectors IMO.
 

danzick

playing with fire
Feb 20, 2014
447
1
18
Livingston, MT
thanks guys. Im at the point now where I need to start calling around for engine machine shops that can work on these parts. any thoughts on the crank? doesnt look good to me, but i dont know much about them.
 

OleBlackyLBZ

Active member
May 22, 2020
210
40
28
thanks guys. Im at the point now where I need to start calling around for engine machine shops that can work on these parts. any thoughts on the crank? doesnt look good to me, but i dont know much about them.
I would spend the money and throw a new oem or callies durastar crank in there and stay stock on the valve springs and pushrods if your staying around 650. Just my opinion
 

danzick

playing with fire
Feb 20, 2014
447
1
18
Livingston, MT
yeah... after completely destroying my 85k engine because I overrevved it and floated the valves, I definitely am upgrading valve springs. I found out the hard way it doesnt take 650 hp to float the valves on these trucks.
 

danzick

playing with fire
Feb 20, 2014
447
1
18
Livingston, MT
Brad has me set up with Manton valve spring kit. Parts are at the machine shop now. He's going to try and get to checking everything out next week. Nice guy. Seems knowledgeable. Does the machine work for most of the repair shops in the state of Montana.
 

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