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#1061814 - 05/09/19 04:35 PM cam swap while still in the car  
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markg Offline
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nj
I want to buy a top end kit from edelbrock.its on sale now at jegs at 425 off.can I install a new cam while the motor is in the car ?
what about the ac condenser?can I move it out of the way and still leave it charged?can I leave some of the accessory brackets still on the motor?(ps pump)


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061818 - 05/09/19 06:00 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Yes you can.
You will have to do some work.
Remove the A/C condenser and radiator and possibly the grill.
Look on Youtube to research your question also.
Good luck.

Last edited by Richie Cat; 05/09/19 06:02 PM.

83 SC, 355 w/TPI
#1061836 - 05/11/19 12:05 AM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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You can change the cam with the engine in the car. You can pull the condenser and compressor and leave them "hanging". You have to pull the water pump and front accessories, including the power steering pump. You'll have to unbolt the bottom of the front support bracket and it will move out of the way enough for you to get the cam out - you won't have to pull the grill.

Replace the timing chain while you're at it if the engine has very many miles on it. A little tip - the hold down hook for the spare tire can be used to screw into the cam bolt holes to use as an installation handle to help remove and install the new cam.


Original owner of 1985 SS black hardtop w/gray interior. Frame-on restoration - 406 sleeper w/ heavily ported FIRST TPI. However the 1.875" headers, 3.5" duals, TH400, Ford 9", notched frame, and 10-point cage w/swing-out bars might tip you off it's not a lil' ole 305 TPI. Other mods: 2" drop, 18" wheels, f/r disk brakes, and custom stereo system.
#1061844 - 05/11/19 02:09 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj
thank you guys so much.
I'm buying an edelbrock top end kit.
its the large port vortec.
I have a vortec now but want a bit more power.
I could not justify buying it because it was nearly 3k but its on sale now from jegs at 420 off.


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061846 - 05/11/19 03:55 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Originally Posted by markg
thank you guys so much.
I'm buying an edelbrock top end kit.
its the large port vortec.
I have a vortec now but want a bit more power.
I could not justify buying it because it was nearly 3k but its on sale now from jegs at 420 off.


I used to have a speed shop back in the late 90s and have helped a lot of people over the years picking parts to make sure they get what they want with spending the least amount of money.

There are typically a lot better combinations out there than the Edelbrock packages for the money. Plus their cams in general do not have very good power to vacuum ratios - that would be especially so if you're looking at the 2097 kit (234° Intake/238° Exhaust), There are cams out there now that you can match that power and pull a lot more vacuum (better street manners).

What kit are you looking at?
How many miles do you have on the 330HP engine?
What intake are you running now?
Are you happy with the idle and braking with the flat tappet hydraulic cam that's in it now?

The reason I ask is you might not need another intake, cam, timing chain, or a number of other parts in those Edelbrock kits. You might only need heads, like the AFR 912 Vortecs ($1600), and gaskets. I wouldn't be surprised at all if just the head swap alone would make more power than the Edelbrock package.


Original owner of 1985 SS black hardtop w/gray interior. Frame-on restoration - 406 sleeper w/ heavily ported FIRST TPI. However the 1.875" headers, 3.5" duals, TH400, Ford 9", notched frame, and 10-point cage w/swing-out bars might tip you off it's not a lil' ole 305 TPI. Other mods: 2" drop, 18" wheels, f/r disk brakes, and custom stereo system.
#1061847 - 05/11/19 04:01 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj
I'm happy with the current setup.its the gm cratemotor 330 deluxe vortec .its about 14 yrs old now and has developed a lifter tic that I cant seem to get rid of.it leaks oil from the intake now but does not smoke.it has the gm intake on it with a 670 street avenger carb.


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061848 - 05/11/19 05:08 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Are you adjusting the lifter and it stays quiet for a while and starts up again? That's usually one of two things, the cam and lifter are wearing or the stud is pulling out of the head. Pretty easy to see if the stud is up higher than the rest. If it ticks no matter what you do, then the lifter is bad but may not have any wear on it - meaning if the lifter base isn't concaved, pump up a new lifter with oil in a plastic cup, lather some break in lube on it and drop it in place. Most of the time a new lifter on the old cam doesn't present a problem - if it works, I wouldn't replace the cam.

While the intake is off measure the flange to see how big a gasket port opening it would take. Put it back together and run for a little while to make sure the lifter cam would be OK. If I ran it a couple hundred miles without problems with the lifter, and the intake can open up to support a 2.320" H x 1.297" opening, I'd just do a head swap and go with the AFR 912's. You would need to call AFR to see if they would set them up with flat tappet hydraulic springs and if not if they would sell them without springs.

#1061853 - 05/11/19 06:46 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj
that sounds good .I had the intake off twice.if the stud is pulling out I did not notice it much as I did look.it stays quiet for about a week and then gets to just an annoying little tic but never gets worse.there is a chance I may have tightened it down a little too much one of the times but I realized a valve may not be closing and redid it after a day.
the edelbrock kit is 2400 with the big port alum heads,a timing chain,cam,air gap intake,head bolts,roller lifters and the hardware to use them and a gasket kit.this seems pretty cheap for all that I would be getting.they guarantee 435 hp and much more torque.i figure 100 more hp will be a real noticeable difference in a car we have been daily driving for nearly 30 yrs.

Last edited by markg; 05/11/19 06:47 PM.

86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061854 - 05/11/19 07:28 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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What's the kit number? The only 435HP kit I see is the one with the 170cc E-Tec heads - they don't flow much more than the stock vortecs you already have.


Original owner of 1985 SS black hardtop w/gray interior. Frame-on restoration - 406 sleeper w/ heavily ported FIRST TPI. However the 1.875" headers, 3.5" duals, TH400, Ford 9", notched frame, and 10-point cage w/swing-out bars might tip you off it's not a lil' ole 305 TPI. Other mods: 2" drop, 18" wheels, f/r disk brakes, and custom stereo system.
#1061855 - 05/11/19 08:23 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061858 - 05/11/19 10:27 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Here's a comparison with suggested part numbers

Edelbrock RPM Air-Gap Vortec Intake Manifold - 350-7516.......Use Current
Edelbrock Performer RPM E-TEC 170 Cylinder Heads - 350-60975 ...............AFR-0912........................ $1,596.00 ($100 off coupon)
Edelbrock Rollin' Thunder Hydraulic Roller Camshaft - 350-2204....................LUN-20120711................. $297.00
Edelbrock Hydraulic Roller Lifters - 350-97384................................................TFS-21400002-16............. $136.00
Edelbrock Lifter Installation Kit - 350-97386.....................................................SUM-150123..................... $80.00
Edelbrock Hardened Pushrods - 350-9653......................................................DNA 1-Piece 1-254-007.... $80.00
Edelbrock Performer-Link Timing Chain Set - 350-7801..................................LUN-93113........................ $65.00
Edelbrock Head Bolt Kit - 350-8550.................................................................ARP-134-3701................... $86.00
Edelbrock Intake Manifold Bolt Kit - 350-8516........ Use Current
Edlebrock Head Gasket Set - 350-7367..........................................................2) FEL-1142026 (.026)....... $124.00
.............................................................................................Header Gasket... FEL-1404........................... $15.00
..............................................................................................Intake Gasket.... FEL-1289-5........................ $26.00
Edelbrock Timing Cover Gasket Set - 350-6997..............................................MAH-JV1041..................... $6.00
....................................................................................................................................................TOTAL ....$2,511.00
Comp Roller Rockers...................................................................................... CCA-17002-16.................. $188.00
....................................................................................................................................................................$2,599.00 ($100 off coupon)

Added the full roller rockers as you'll need those and they're not included in the kit. You can get $100 off on Summit orders over $1000 Order the heads and the rest as two separate orders to get $200 off.

AFR 912 190cc Vortecs flow 279cfm at cam lift - that's 50cfm more than the 170 E-Tec heads (HUGE difference) - this alone would be worth the differential and more than make up for what ever additional power the RPM Air Gap would give you. If you get it all together and fell like you need a few more RPM up top add a .375" or .500" open spacer (around $30)

The Lunati VooDoo cam specs are 219/227 - 112 .549/.565 (with 1.6 rockers) - gives a little more lift with the 1.6:1s and will pull considerably more vacuum. Should pull hard right off idle, unlike the Edelbrock

The Felpro head gaskets are MLS and .026" which will give you a little more compression than those in the kit.

Everything else is as good or better than what's in the kit.

You can order a custom grind Comp for $310 and get a couple more HP and a little better vacuum than the VooDoo suggested, but it would be marginal.

#1061860 - 05/11/19 11:01 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj
thank you so much!
you've really spent some time on this.
I have a brand new set of harland 1.5 roller rockers.
I know the fel pro gaskets are better especially the intakes.
I don't have to go roller I just thought it would be nice because it was in this kit.
would the 1.5 rockers be ok with the setup you've described?


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061862 - 05/11/19 11:54 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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If you already have some 1.5:1 roller rockers, I'd opt for a few buck more for a custom cam to get the lift up in the .530 to .560 range. With you having a block that you can put the roller lifter kit and use stockish roller lifters, it's probably worth going with the roller cam to take full advantage of the head flow from the AFR heads.

Order the following lobes on core # 12-000-8 ($310) and tell them you want a 112-degree lobe separation with the intake lobe at 108 degrees and the exhaust at 116 degrees. That will build in 4-degrees advancement, I've found that most of the good timing chain gears like the Lunati indicated early (with thrust bushing) are pretty accurate at the "0" position. So the chances of you having to do anymore than put the cam in "straight up" in relation to the timing gears to get a true 4-degrees advance at the cam is minimal. Still need to degree the cam because they have sent me cams without the "ground in" advancement requested.
Intake - Lobe 3007 - 270 - 220 - .536
Exhaust Lobe 13080 - 278 - 228 - .540

You could save a few bucks going back with a flat tappet, but you'd be giving up about 25 horses compared to a relatively aggressive flat tappet hydraulic that could have issues if not broken in properly.


Original owner of 1985 SS black hardtop w/gray interior. Frame-on restoration - 406 sleeper w/ heavily ported FIRST TPI. However the 1.875" headers, 3.5" duals, TH400, Ford 9", notched frame, and 10-point cage w/swing-out bars might tip you off it's not a lil' ole 305 TPI. Other mods: 2" drop, 18" wheels, f/r disk brakes, and custom stereo system.
#1061914 - 05/14/19 10:47 AM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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markg Offline
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nj
I'm going to order all of the components you've indicated.it definitely seems like its way better this way.thank you.
I'm just a little confused on getting a custom cam grind because I have never done this nor have any of my friends.there is a very "cool" factor in having it done though.
will this idle ok for a street car?
will it have decent street manners?
you could always pm me with details but I would think others on the forum could benefit from your knowledge too.


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061916 - 05/14/19 01:04 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Mark, Kevin helped me spec a custom cam for my fast burn 383 3 years ago and I'm very happy with how it turned out. While we undershot the heads a bit which made the peak power a bit lower in RPM range than optimal, the vacuum and driveability are fantastic. It pulls 18" of vacuum at idle while making 467 hp and 525 ft lbs at the crank. I can't wait to see how it does with the new single plane intake and EFI.


Lance
1985 Monte Carlo SS Street Car
#1061928 - 05/15/19 07:46 AM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Originally Posted by markg
I'm going to order all of the components you've indicated.it definitely seems like its way better this way.thank you.
I'm just a little confused on getting a custom cam grind because I have never done this nor have any of my friends.there is a very "cool" factor in having it done though.
will this idle ok for a street car?
will it have decent street manners?
you could always pm me with details but I would think others on the forum could benefit from your knowledge too.


I think you're going to be very happy with the combo - much better than the Edelbrock kit. Peak power may not be a lot different with the AFR heads and current intake over the Edelbrock heads and air-gap, but the idle, street manners, and overall power will be a lot better. Plus, if you get everything together and you want just a little more up top, going to a better intake later will add enough power to make it seem like it was worth doing. In addition, those AFR heads gives you near limitless "upgrade" options without having to go with another set of heads.

Idle should be about the same as the 218/224-110 off the shelf Comp Extreme that you see used all the time in 350s in most magazine dyno articles. However, it should make similar power down low while adding a few HP up top over the off-the-shelf cam. To me, that’s the main benefit for going with a custom grind – better power with the same or better idle and street manners than the shelf grinds. In your case since you already have 1.5:1 ratio rocker arms, the custom grind lets you get the extra valve lift to take advantage of the AFR head flow (about the same lift as a shelf grind with 1.6:1 rockers). Win/win in your case.

As far as street manners, it’ll be worlds better than the cam that was in the Edlebrock kit. I ran a 268/218 – 276/228 – 110 +2 cam in my old IROC with a 355. It idled with just enough bump to tell it wasn’t stock, pulled 18” vacuum at 750 rpm by adjusting the computer controlled timing, would murder the street tires from a 1st gear roll, and pull past 6200rpm.

You won’t be able to pull in as much timing at idle with a “manual” curve distributor, but if it has an adjustable vacuum advance pod (if not, get one) you should be able to get enough timing in it to idle around 800rpm with a just a little bump to it. It should have excellent street manners and if you can get the timing curve and added vacuum advance set right, playing around throttle response should be extremely satisfying.

Thanks for the shout out Lance, you’re going to love the way that single plane is going to feel in the straightaways!

#1061945 - 05/16/19 10:46 PM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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just need to know if the pushrods you specd out are the right lengthn for the 1.5 rockers instead of the 1.6 we originally had.


86 ss 86 cl,330hp GM vortec cratemotor-700-r trans worked,ford 9.5 inch rear with 3-50s,custom 3 inch exhaust with flowmasters.
#1061947 - 05/17/19 12:25 AM Re: cam swap while still in the car [Re: markg]  
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Originally Posted by markg
just need to know if the pushrods you specd out are the right length for the 1.5 rockers instead of the 1.6 we originally had.


Man,,, I'm glad you asked about this. The part number for the DNA pushrods are the same length as those from the Edlebrock kit. Since the heads (deck and valve length could be differnt) and head gaskets are different, and there could be some slight variance with the different lifters, the pushrod length for your combination of parts could be different. To be certain on the length, you would need to bolt it all together, then use a pushrod length checker (like below) to know the exact length to order. When I was building engines on the side back in the day, I kept three differing lengths on hand so it wouldn't delay the build time. However, now only building one in a blue moon, I measure, then order, but it adds about 4 days to the build time.

Order one of these: It's an adjustable pushrod checker (CCA-7702-1, $21) that is strong enough to open the hydraulic roller springs without bending
[Linked Image]

https://www.summitracing.com/parts/cca-7702-1/overview/

Hopefully it's not a daily driver and the 4 day wait time on the pushrods won't be a big deal. If so, I'd order the the 7.2" stock length OEM pushrods (like are in the Edlebrock kit and the DNA ones above) - there is a good chance they would work. Order them along with the pushrod checker. Use the pushrod checked first, then it it measures out to 7.2", you already have the pushrods. If not, Summit will let you return the unused pushrods for the right length.

With hydraulic lifters, you'll need to "pump them up" to get a good measurement. If not, the plunger will depress and throw off the reading. I have a cup that the 16 lifters fit tightly in, I cover them in oil and use a pushrod to move the plunger up and down until it sucks in oil and the plunger quits moving up and down. If you only want to do one to check the pushrods, a medicine bottle with oil covering the lifter works pretty good.

Here's an article about checking pushrod length
https://www.hotrod.com/articles/measure-pushrod-length/


Original owner of 1985 SS black hardtop w/gray interior. Frame-on restoration - 406 sleeper w/ heavily ported FIRST TPI. However the 1.875" headers, 3.5" duals, TH400, Ford 9", notched frame, and 10-point cage w/swing-out bars might tip you off it's not a lil' ole 305 TPI. Other mods: 2" drop, 18" wheels, f/r disk brakes, and custom stereo system.

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