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Technical 354 Hemi power potential

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by tartar_sammich, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Of course they do. They will never be a set it and forget it but they'll be less of a problem with the roller cam then they would s with a flat tappet cam.
  2. That's good to hear. They probably have very little wear on them because he never raced the car. Everything in the engine should be in very good condition.
  3. If no mice got in the you're good to go.

    Those rockers I posted are on this engine freshened in the '60s and stored under the shop bench. That's a mouse nest in the piston in the #2 cylinder. Luckily it didn't hurt anything a fresh scuff and a good leaning and it is good to go. It would have been a disaster if we had fired it before we checked it out.

  4. 73RR
    Joined: Jan 29, 2007
    Posts: 6,723


    This type of adjuster relies on an 'interrupted' thread pitch...kinda like a bad spot on the screw thread that partially seizes. They are hard to turn and generally did their job ok. Not necessarily ideal.

  5. Kind of reminds me of a cotton candy machine...
  6. Well sometimes life around me is a circus and I think I still got the nest. Hungry? :D :D

    it has always amazed me the hole a mouse can get through. I always read about these guys that got an old engine out of a barn and they threw it on their whatever and lit it off. Just rattles me, I guess just a little knowledge can be a bad thing.
  7. 73RR
    Joined: Jan 29, 2007
    Posts: 6,723


    I have been told that many mice can go through a dime-sized hole, spark plug size...:eek:
  8. The fed was actually experimenting with sewer rats and discovered that they could crawl through a quarter sized hole. I wouldn't doubt that a mouse could crawl through a dime sized hole.

    When I was young I would just grab any old engine and slam it in something and drive it. Some lasted longer than others, but they were cheap and I had lots of energy. These days I don't see the wisdom in taking an engine that you know nothing about and running it.
  9. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,845

    Atwater Mike

    Hi, Benno!

    Abstract thread McGurk rockers, had them on my old Joe Reath Hemi in 1962: Chet Herbert roller.
    I wasn't real 'hot' on the abstract screw adjusters, as I was a Ford mechanic at the time, and the new 292s had those adjusters. My preference for the stud/locking nut was simply based on 'worry and nervousness' for the total cash outlay for the Herbert cam, rollers, and valve train! :eek:

    This '37 Coupe is one beauty! Tell me, is that a 5 speed under that floor plate? New addition??
  10. Mike they actually worry me a little bit too. I am sure that they work because this engine was a beast and shows no signs of valve train failure. But you are right jam nuts just make me more comfortable.
  11. Thanks! It's a Packard 3 speed. Nothing has changed on this car in a long time.
  12. I like it when you can reach down by your knee open a trap door and adjust the timing :)
    There's more than enough room under there for a 671 blower.
    You could set a single or dual centrifugal and force feed the hilborn too. Like a potvin but with a Paxton

    I went for a little cruze in a car just the other day, 354 hemi with a pro charger that runs 10s.
    So nice and mild mannered that mom could drive it too, if she would crawl around the roll bar and keep her foot out of it. Lol
    slam the loud pedal and hang on
  13. bostonhemi
    Joined: Dec 1, 2011
    Posts: 670


    In mass. its 6-800
  14. Like this
  15. 402BOSSMAN
    Joined: Jul 26, 2015
    Posts: 349


    Yes, actually 385ci 354 based engine. Was a really cool experience to be apart of! Motor is going in his street rod so all can see.
  16. 402BOSSMAN
    Joined: Jul 26, 2015
    Posts: 349


    Your power goals are very attainable. A few things, those aluminum retainers - ditch them for a Tool Steel retainer from Comp Cams since it will see plenty of street time. They are strong retainers and weigh about a gram more than titanium. Don't be afraid of lift if the valvetrain is setup properly. Early Hemi heads can run up to a 5.160 length valve to work with a stock rocker system, I don't believe this isn't widely known. This will give you around a 1.850-1.880 installed spring height depending on the lock/retainer combo and if you lower the spring seat a little. This opens up spring selection a ton! Gene Adams just built a dyno mule motor for some testing we are doing soon that has a solid roller with .680 (.660 at the valve after deflection) lift using stock adjustable rockers for reference. You may contact Rocker Arm Specialties about your adjusters, I would certainly upgrade them. The rest of the power will be in the porting of the head.
  17. We will definitely upgrade the adjusters. The heads may have had work done already (we're hoping) because it was built to race. It'd be great if we could use the cam too, but we need to find out what the specs are on it.
  18. 402BOSSMAN
    Joined: Jul 26, 2015
    Posts: 349


    Since it is a Crane get the grind number on the end and give Chase a call at Crane. Otherwise a degree wheel and some dial indicators can give you a good ballpark.
  19. Alright. You wouldn't happen to know how well a 354 will fit inside a 37 would you? We have to move the engine forward for for space inside, and we have to modify the frame. He has the transmission sitting on top of the x member, and we're going to do something about that as well. It has no firewall currently, so if we buy a firewall that is recessed for a BBC, will the Hemi fit? The Hemi is wider, but the rest of the dimensions are pretty similar I think.
  20. 402BOSSMAN
    Joined: Jul 26, 2015
    Posts: 349


    Going back in the thread to look at your pics that is one tight fit! Packaging is a obvious concern now that I see it. The Hemi is really wide I'm sure the BBC firewall would still need modified width wise for the heads to clear. Sorry, don't have first handle knowledge of fitting that engine in that particular car.
  21. Yea that is our main concern. Right now it's either 354 or 383 stroker. I love small blocks as much as the next guy, but, IMO, they look tiny in these cars and it leaves a lot of room in there. I think the Hemi looks right in it but making it fit is the hardest part about the whole thing.
  22. j grady
    Joined: May 14, 2012
    Posts: 6

    j grady


    Just a quick note on this, the screws are clearly blocking the oil passage in the rocker arms, it is about .170 down in on 300 adj rockers, (they have a machined flat top), you would have to measure these. which gets into getting correct push rod length .Has to be dead right within .1 or so from get go, with 300 adj arms, or you will block the oil with the screw. .
    Many had drilled and tapped their hydraulic arms to get this adjustment but did not cut a band in the screw once you know where it is --so oil can get out that hole, then goes around screw to pushrod ends ; also slant six adjuster screws were often used . Needs screw end right way around for screw type, I think slant has a cup on push rod. 300 has a ball and 3/8 cup in screw end (not 5/16. )--also 300 has 3/8 cup in lifter , hydraulic 5/16 .Many adjustable push rods seem to have 1/4 (.250 tips) , that seems all screwed up, don't work right in either place .
    300 has a hollow screw too , tiny hole to cup to lube pushrod ball. A fully machined thing of utter beauty, very fine threads, maybe .0024 per turn.

    So current comp A block solids have 5/16 . Would go with those vs even NOS due to lifter fiasco a few years back, my engine guy says they for sure used different lifters (China and Mexico) the ones that failed had different machining marks. Denial by all involved of course., blaming oil. He had 5-6 engines fail, cost him a lot of $, had a stockpile of same oil, never had solid fail in 15 years before an epidemic of it ...Just sayin, be careful .
    Rollers less of an issue , what about cam/ dist gear ? brass?
  23. brigrat
    Joined: Nov 9, 2007
    Posts: 5,496

    from Wa.St.

    Going to far forward will require hood side panel blisters or no sides at all for VC clearance ................
  24. PotvinV8
    Joined: Mar 30, 2009
    Posts: 228


    Cool project! I'm building a '40 Ford coupe with a Chrysler so I'm going through the same fitment issues you've mentioned. Things do get tight!

    Looks like you got your answer as far as power is concerned. If I could pass on a bit of advice, don't worry so much on the number. Most of the claims you hear passed around at car shows, etc. are bullshit and those cars/engines haven't been dyno'd. If you build that engine right, 300hp at the wheels is well within reality and will be more than enough to bring a smile to your face in a traditional hot rod.

    My advice? Pull the engine apart and inspect every component so you know EXACTLY what you're dealing with. A "racing engine" in the '60s is different than one built today. You need to know the cam specs, valve sizes, compression ratio, rod length, stroke, bore, etc. etc. You're assuming a lot without taking it apart and that's bad. Plus, it will make for a great educational adventure, which at your age, you need... you son of a so and so...LOL

    Have fun, ask a lot of questions, and get after it! We're here to help and remember, there are no dumb question!
  25. TRENDZ
    Joined: Oct 16, 2018
    Posts: 333


    I don’t know how much of the fuel system you have, but knowing the sizes of some of those parts will tell you what power it made (assuming it was a good running engine) in its current configuration.
    loudbang likes this.
  26. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 8,767


    @tartar_sammich what happened with your build, did you stay with the Hemi?
    loudbang likes this.
  27. j hansen
    Joined: Dec 22, 2012
    Posts: 2,899

    j hansen

    He has build threads,check his profile page.
    loudbang and Budget36 like this.
  28. I had Ernie Hashim build my long bell 331 into a 354 in about '90. He had a little machine shop and M&H sales shop in Bakersfield CA. He bored it 1/8" over, found me two sets of used 354 pistons from which he made one good set, and refirbed the crank and rods and balanced the whole thing. I have been running aluminum retainers for 20 yrs but it is just a cruiser, never wound tight for racing. I run a J.C. Whitney "3/4 race" cam I bought as an ignorant youth in the mid 60s. I have never had an idea what its specs are, just sounded like a good idea back then. Sweet running engine.

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