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Projects Gambling on a 283 sbc

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by iwanaflattie, Jun 27, 2019.

  1. I took a gamble on a 283 short block supossedly rebuilt..
    Came with 400 heads,no oil pick up,missing pan,intake,carb and distributor.
    I just couldt pass it up.
    els, Torkwrench and RMR&C like this.
  2. Voh
    Joined: Oct 18, 2006
    Posts: 805


    My gamble on a 283 a number of years ago ended up being a great deal! sounds like a nice little cam. I replace the intake and pan seals as well as the oil pump. It was like $200, complete.
    els likes this.
  3. Sounds like a good deal, I would rebuild it id it were mine. HRP
    els, da34guy and Gman0046 like this.
  4. What Danny said ^^^^^^^^
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  5. Thanks guys.
    200 is better than my 140 but what sold me is the rebuilt part.
    The walls look super clean as the reat of the parts,new freeze plugs,i can see new gaskets, the top of the pistons say 030.
    The og heads were used in another build they said so they gave me the 400 heads..
    This is a shop that is going to specialize in mopar stuff so they are selling all their gm/ford stuff.

    This is the ad
  6. Truckdoctor Andy
    Joined: Jan 13, 2017
    Posts: 700

    Truckdoctor Andy

    You might want to think long and hard before using those “400” heads on a 283. They look like 882 heads and most likely have a 76cc chamber. This will murder any compression ratio you have. Look for 283 heads or 305 heads.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  7. Yes thank you .
    I did read a few threads on the subject last night.
    I did bring the issue with seller about not having the stock heads but it was still a good deal,I could sell/trade the heads.
    Im in no hurry to get this one running but will keep and eye on cheap parts as they pop up.
    Truckdoctor Andy likes this.
  8. el Scotto
    Joined: Mar 3, 2004
    Posts: 4,060

    el Scotto
    from Tracy, CA

    I love 283s. Most guys yank ‘em out for a crate motor 350 and I’ve gotten the last one for free and paid $200 each for the two prior to it.

    The $200 one in my Mercury even had some kind of lumpy camshaft in it. I put an old aluminum four barrel on it, a pair of small valve double hump heads and a Mallory dual point and it’s runs pretty good for a cheapo engine. I have 2.5” Corvette rams horns and some chrome Chevrolet script valve covers to put on and call it good. Engine was out and in doing a T5 conversion in the car so that’s why things are a bit out of sorts.

  9. I love it.
    Im glad i pulled the trigger,I have a 37 gmc with a 270 and this sbc will be the buck up for it.
  10. 41rodderz
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 2,421

    from Oregon

  11. slug
    Joined: Sep 1, 2007
    Posts: 113


    Building one for my 32 sedan. 39 trans, 34 rear.
  12. Yes get some smaller chamber heads. Powerpacks, 305 small chamber or 194 double humps.
    34toddster and Truckdoctor Andy like this.
  13. aerocolor
    Joined: Oct 7, 2009
    Posts: 1,130

    from dayton

    I used 305 HO heads on mine with a mild RV cam.
    Had to drill and tap for a balancer bolt but they do have steel crankshafts.
    Made a great motor for the roadster. 2278341-0783ecacd9ad457300d4a4b6cbe75ead.jpg
  14. PackardV8
    Joined: Jun 7, 2007
    Posts: 865


    Interesting the 283" still has magic here and we can't give away 305"s and 307"s, which are improved in many areas.

    jack vines
    Truckdoctor Andy likes this.
  15. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 25,000


    It's all in the mystique of the small journal crank small block for many of them even though you can build the others as strong runners. It's not about the potential power it's about the potential Bubba Factor.
    Back to the OP's engine, those 400 heads should sell easy enough that you can get a pair of heads that will work better with the 283 with the coin.
    SquintBoy likes this.
  16. aerocolor
    Joined: Oct 7, 2009
    Posts: 1,130

    from dayton

    I know they never were horsepower kings but I remember owning a couple of Impalas that you couldn't hear idling and tbey ran forever.
    I still have '61 & '65 complete 283 engines air cleaner to oil pan stored back for some reason.
  17. sounds like my first 283. 441 heads with the 76 cc chambers, 278 duration, .465 lift crower cam, 600 holley on a c4b intake. Couldn't get out of its own way. My "buddy" sold me the engine, and rebuilt it for me, (I was 17)and claimed it was a Corvette 327. (arent they all)My first journey down the"trust no one, learn your stuff" road. Ironically, in all my years chasing 327's, I have not found one out of a vette, but according to my numbers books, have had a 60, and a 61dual quad vette 283 in my parts pile.
  18. I have a 67-8 Camaro 275hp 327 in the back yard, Does that count for a Corvette engine?

    It does share 3 same letters and engine size BAHAHAHAHA
    Joined: May 5, 2015
    Posts: 526


    On a "Gas Pumper's" salary I was able to buy a beat up 60 Corvette from a local used car lot. The first thing I did was to pull the 283 out and install a 396 (not the smartest move I made in my life). I had the 283 sitting in my Father's garage, pretty much getting in the way. I sold the motor to another kid (we were all kids back then) for a few bucks more than the regular 283 would bring because it was a Vette motor. The kid asks if I am sure it is a Vette motor, and I take him into the garage to show him my Corvette (which was all apart) and also pointed out the fact that the front engine mount and thermoset housing was different than the regular 283. The kid was sold on the fact that he was buying a real Vette motor and I was happy to make a few bucks, and my Father was happy to see it out of his garage. Now for the rest of the story, I driving my 60 Corvette, power by a 325 hp, 396 truck motor (I told you not the best move I ever made) and ran into the guy who was the previous owner of my Corvette. The first thing he asked me was how did the car run. I told him I only drive it home and pulled the motor. He said that was a good idea, because he had spun a bearing and the motor was knocking pretty loud and that he went to the junk yard and pulled a motor (SBC) out of a taxi cab that was a police car, installed it in the Vette and traded in in ( I never did ask about the motor that he pulled out of the Vette). So now I am feel pretty low about screwing over the kid that brought my so call Vette motor. Track him down and talk to him about the so called Vette motor I sold him. Well he took the whole thing down to a machine shop and had them rebuild it. The guy at the machine shop told him that it was not a Vette motor because 60 Corvette's did not come with 327s
    studebaker eric and Atwater Mike like this.
  20. Your block casting indicates a 57-59 283 with 220-290 hp, most likely a 4bbl/PG car.

    The plus is these are so cool, traditional and doesn't have the bosses for block-side engine mounts. To the trained eye, there's no denying that its a period-correct SBC!!

    The minus is it only has front engine mounts, so either you are prepared to use only front (some HIGHLY recommend the use of a bellhousing with mid-mounts to support the rear of the engine) and transmission mounts.

    I would have scooped it up, too!! Nice score!
    RiffRaffRoadster likes this.
  21. oldtom69
    Joined: Dec 6, 2009
    Posts: 378

    from grandin nd

    58-up had the side mount bosses-one down side is the pre-60? blocks used rope rear seal
    bowie likes this.
  22. I’ve got a ‘64 283 (not out of a vette) in my ‘32. 350hp L79cam, double hump heads with larger 305 valves installed. Engine runs really strong and sounds great. Have a whole 300 miles on it in the last 4 years.

    bowie likes this.
  23. Nova Thug
    Joined: Jun 9, 2012
    Posts: 72

    Nova Thug
    from SG Vizzle

    I’ve got a couple of 283s on hand one is fairly complete long block not rebuilt. The 2nd is just a short block with cylinders stuck in the bores.. I ran the numbers on them years ago when I picked them up and they are NOT Vette engines nor are they Nova blocks.. The more complete engine 64 full size passenger car application as I recall.. I was on the hunt for a 327 at the time and contacted a guy from a CL add with a listing for a 327 and 283.. He was mostly doing big block swaps so he had a stock pile of Chevy sbc at his place.. I ended up picking up his older sbc 55-69 engines as he had no use for them.. If anyone is interested is some of the engines you can PM me.. I DON’T have any 327s. I do have ‘69 350 truck motor long block with intake manifold.. I’m in SoCal SGV/LA area.
  24. How much for the 327?
  25. Definitely a good engine with some better heads. Speedway has some Dart steel claimer heads I was considering for my car. Even their Flotek aluminum heads will wake it up with a cam change, but things escalate quickly...
  26. Nova Thug
    Joined: Jun 9, 2012
    Posts: 72

    Nova Thug
    from SG Vizzle

    Alright Flattie, for you I’ll make a “special deal” I will gladly sell you a 327 I don’t own today for a HAMBurger tomorrow..
  27. ramblin dan
    Joined: Apr 16, 2018
    Posts: 1,473

    ramblin dan

    Sweet buy, I got one on my engine stand right now about to head to the machine shop for the heads to be done and the block to be decked. Then comes the crossram intake.

    Attached Files:

  28. I know I dont want to turn this into a might as well engine...
    Ill try to build it as I go,play it by ear.

    Im glad you got the jest haha

    Nice nice nice!
  29. spook498
    Joined: Sep 26, 2009
    Posts: 147


    And just think when I left California to move to the midwest, I junked a complete (but in pieces) 283 and a 327.

    I bought a 283 off of Craigslist 6 months before that for $50. The guy wanted it out of his shop. It had been on a 3 wheel stand, and when he was rolling it over, the stand flipped and it landed on a cylinder head stud, and broke the stud boss. He could have pulled the head and milled the boss down for a screw in stud, but they were 265 heads on a '58 283 block. So I took it home, not knowing what I was going to do with it.

    Later I pulled the head in question, and what do I find? .030 domed pistons! He had rebuilt the motor, run it, didnt like it, pulled it, did a cam swap and run it again and still didnt like it. (Im thinking the 265 heads were the factor more than the cam)

    So now, Im rebuilding it. I have some small chamber, big valve 305 heads on it, and a 300hp iron intake on it. Its getting a coat of paint this weekend, and getting ready to go in the car. Once its broke it, and (hopefully) runs good, I am going to pull it back out and sell it as a running motor. So far, Im about $550 into the whole thing.
    Atwater Mike likes this.
  30. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 9,499

    Atwater Mike

    I still have the '69 350 that came out of Dr. Jacobs' 'Vette, flat cam.
    My Aussie friend bought 2 '56 Chevy Bel Airs in Washington State, brought them to Atwater, pulled both 283s ('65 and '66 pickup engines) and gave them to me.
    Shipped both Chevs to O-Z, for later sale.
    One of the 283s I installed in my '50 F1. The other I'm going thru (std. overhaul, no cyl. taper, both engines have Power-Pak heads, I have a cam, triple 97 intake, Cal Custom valve covers, stainless headers. )
    Two more engines were delivered to me by my old pal Rick. One is a '56 265, the other is a '57 283, need to find a restorer that needs a 'relic'...

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