Small-Block Chevrolet: Stock and High-Performance Rebuilds (Workbench How-to)

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The small-block Chevrolet is easily the most popular V-8 engine ever built. It was introduced in 1955, and remained in production until the mid-1990s, powering legendary cars such as the 1955-1957 Chevys, Camaros, Impalas, Novas, Chevelles, and of course, the most popular sports car of all time, the Corvette. Of course, whether restoring or modifying one of these classics, the time comes when your small-block Chevy needs rebuilding.

This updated version of Small-Block Chevrolet: Stock and High-Performance Rebuilds is a quality, step-by-step Workbench book that shows you how to rebuild a street or racing small-block Chevy in your own garage. It includes more than 600 color photos and easy-to-read text that explains every procedure a professional builder uses to assemble an engine, from crankshaft to carburetor. Detailed sections show how to disassemble a used engine, inspect for signs of damage, select replacement parts, buy machine work, check critical component fit, and much more! Performance mods and upgrades are discussed along the way, so the book meets the needs of all enthusiasts, from restorers to hot rodders.

Small Block Chevrolet: Stock and High-Performance Rebuilds is a must-have for every small-block Chevy fan.


From the Publisher

This updated version of Small-Block Chevrolet: Stock and High-Performance Rebuilds is a step-by-step Workbench book that shows you how to rebuild a street or racing small-block Chevy in your own garage. It includes more than 600 color photos and easy-to-read text that explains every procedure a professional builder uses to assemble an engine, from crankshaft to carburetor. Detailed sections show how to disassemble a used engine, inspect for signs of damage, select replacement parts, buy machine work, check critical component fit, and much more! Performance mods and upgrades are discussed along the way, so the book meets the needs of all enthusiasts, from restorers to hot rodders.

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Special Tools

A dial indicator, along with a deckheight stand and a magnetic stand, will make your life much easier and your measuring more precise. The magnetic base and adjustability of the arm will help in hundreds of measurements.

Disassembly

Taking photos of your engine (in addition to marking components) before removing it from your car and during the rebuilding process is a great idea. It will help you maintain an accurate record of your project, plus it can be a big help when you are trying to distinguish one mounting bracket from another.

Parts Inspection

This chapter will help you inspect the main components of your engine before you take them to the machine shop. You may discover nothing wrong, or you may find some components damaged beyond repair. The worn thrust surface on this crankshaft is more costly to repair than buying a replacement core.

Parts Selection

Holley Replacement Parts produces a line of “emissions legal” carburetors that include all vacuum hookups and bowl venting to the charcoal canister.

Small Block Chevy

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The small-block Chevrolet is easily the most popular V-8 engine ever built. It was introduced in 1955, and remained in production until the mid-1990s, powering legendary cars such as the 1955-1957 Chevys, Camaros, Impalas, Novas, Chevelles, and of course, the most popular sports car of all time, the Corvette. Of course, whether restoring or modifying one of these classics, the time comes when your small-block Chevy needs rebuilding.

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Machining

If you’ve purchased a used block or heads that you’ve never seen in operation, have your machine shop pressure-test them to ensure they are free of pinholes or undetected cracks.

Pre-Assembly

Apply a thin film of engine oil on the cam bearings and journals. Install a long bolt or this Goodson “handle” to help support the cam. Begin installing the cam in the block, rotating it as you go. If the bearings have been installed properly, the cam should turn freely as it enters each successive bearing.

Final Assembly

Watching your engine come together with shiny new parts is exciting! However, don’t let your excitement get the better of you. Make sure you take the time to be 100- percent sure of everything. Then, just to be safe, check it again. If you have doubts about anything, ask your machine shop for advice.

Installation

Mount a chain to the engine using the holes on the front and back of the cylinder head. It is best to position the engine so the rear of the engine is slightly lower than the front. This generally helps out when you’re lowering the engine into position with the transmission. It is also recommended to install an old set of spark plugs because one or two will get broken during the install.

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