Register now to get rid of these ads!

Hot Rods In your opinion what is the best all around cubic inch combination for a hot rod?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Roothawg, Oct 7, 2020.

  1. 327-sbc

    119 vote(s)
  2. 283-sbc

    29 vote(s)
  3. 265-sbc

    1 vote(s)
  4. 427-sbc

    9 vote(s)
  5. 302 Ford

    16 vote(s)
  6. 390 Cadillac

    10 vote(s)
  7. 390 FE- Ford

    5 vote(s)
  8. 354 Chrysler

    6 vote(s)
  9. 392 Chrysler

    21 vote(s)
  10. Flatheads rule

    59 vote(s)
  11. 389 Pontiac for Abone

    12 vote(s)
  1. How long is a string?
    Six Ball and Roothawg like this.
  2. 41rodderz
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 5,385

    from Oregon

    My soft spot is a 283 from stock to wild . Other than that , it is “ 6 in a row “ . :)
    Roothawg likes this.
  3. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,853


    The biggest cubes you can get! I like torque! Building a 462 3X2 FE for my ride!

    Elcohaulic and Roothawg like this.
  4. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,675


    408 Windsor would be a nice package also. Nice thing is the 9.50 block deck height. No aftermarket block needed or weird piston/ rod combinations.
    Roothawg and Gammz like this.
  5. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,675


    Boneyard51 likes this.
  6. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,853


    I actually have one of those(557) for sale! Probably should use it, but I want an FE in my 65, so that I can use my cast iron long tube manifolds.

  7. As much as I love a SBC, I went with the Chrysler 392 because it can motovate a FED to 4 second runs down the 1320.
    triumph 1 likes this.
  8. goldmountain
    Joined: Jun 12, 2016
    Posts: 2,717


    Since we are talking about displacement, how about the Rambler 327? Same bore and stroke as that "other" engine. Just stirring the can of worms.
    Roothawg likes this.
  9. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 8,512

    jimmy six

    Mild SBC 416 - 434 9:5:1 -10:1 .560 Hyd R cam ,keep rpms to around 6000, between $6,000-7500
    This is what’s built for 90% of the dirt track super/pro/unlimited stock cars all iron flat tappet engines in the country. Compression will be higher and dynos prove max hp is right at 6200. 7000 will kill them as my son and I have found out, but they are torque monsters on a sticky track.
    It’s why I picked the 427 SBC. They do cost $$$ but worth every penny when you don’t want a heavy weight on the nose of your hot rod.
    Blues4U likes this.
  10. ekimneirbo
    Joined: Apr 29, 2017
    Posts: 1,848

    from Brooks Ky

    Because this is a traditional site, we can't discuss the best Chevy engine ever made. The "secret" to that engine is its head design, light weight,and low cost. So, The beauty of a smallblock is that it will fit just about any car and is pretty light when using aluminum heads. Part for comparable part its going to be cheaper to build than any competitor. The only real consideration is which block someone is going to start with. For a street driven vehicle, decent low end torque makes for a pleasant driving experience. With a large cubic inch small block, you can have great driveability but still use a cam that gives you great midrange and reasonable upper rpm power. Most of us aren't looking for power above the 5500/6000 rpm range in a street engine.
    Lots of people love the "legendary" 327 which for a long time gave a lot of bigger engines fits. Talk about bore/stroke ratios and oversquare and long stroke vs big bore all you want, but cubic inches is where the conversation should end.
    $ for $ and HP per Lb, a 427 smallblock is tough to find fault with.
  11. Jmountainjr
    Joined: Dec 29, 2006
    Posts: 1,317


    If you have not read them, you might find these two books interesting:
    How to build Big-Inch Chevy Small Blocks by Graham Hansen.
    How to build Max Performance Chevy Small Blocks on a Budget by David Vizard
    They are both 17 to 20 years old, so some of the latest parts are not used, but still could be useful to your debate as they each have dyno sheets on several combos so you can judge bang for the buck.
    -Brent- likes this.
  12. J. A. Miller
    Joined: Dec 30, 2010
    Posts: 1,539

    J. A. Miller
    from Central NY

    What, no love for Olds or Buick?:rolleyes:
    triumph 1 likes this.
  13. RmK57
    Joined: Dec 31, 2008
    Posts: 1,675


    I dont see how that could be even possible.
  14. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,634

    from oregon

    Yeh, 1/8 mile is not 1320!
    19Eddy30 likes this.
  15. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 7,335

    from Nicasio Ca

    Montana1, Okie Pete and Blues4U like this.
  16. For me, the criteria would be:
    #1, As many cubes as possible...
    #2, anything but a chevrolet...
    Pretty easy...
  17. triumph 1
    Joined: Feb 9, 2011
    Posts: 563

    triumph 1

    As many have stated & I can contest; you will get more HP per $ out of a decent displacement SB chevy with a good match of parts than most other options. I’ve personally built several that down right ripped & had zero issues w/ stellar reliability & power. With that being said; I Just finished an olds 324 build & I have absolutely no regrets...
    Early engines are bad ass; if you’re budget allows.

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
  18. Elcohaulic
    Joined: Dec 27, 2017
    Posts: 1,777


    I had one of those in a 65 Ambassador hard top. It actually ran pretty good! lol
  19. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,516



    Having worked with 265, 283 and the 327 SBC motors, that seems like the easiest and a simple installation on just about any hot rod combination. It has been done on everything from coupes to woody station wagons with simplicity and ease. So, to me and others of our generation, at least in Bixby Knolls area of Long Beach, Chevy small block motors were the simple, easy to work on and most reliable motor for our sedans and hot rods.

    At the time of the introduction in 1955, the more people bought the new powerful motors, the more they drove. Then as statistics go, the more they drove, the more parts there were in the local junkyards and auto scrapyards. So, we all had access to many different auto scrapyards (called scrapyards before being called auto dismantling or recycling automotives) and the many different small 265 and 283 motors.

    The small local speed shops and mail order catalogs all had so many choices of adapters to fit these abundant 265/283 motors to any car for installations. So, the ease and simplicity of newish motors in old hot rods was accessible to all those young teens/20 something hot rodders. Add in adapters for just about any transmission and the driveline was pretty complete.

    Our two builds of a 283 SBC + Strombergs and grown larger to a 292 C.I. 671 SBC was eye opening and simple for two teenage fledgling engine/hot rod builders. It took awhile, but it had to be specific to showcase what we could do as engine builders. No one at the time had a new 671 Isky-Gilmer 671 supercharger system, unless you worked for Isky. We had to get it right with what we could afford.
    Similar motor in looks and build. New Isky-Gilmer 671 set up and kit.


    When the 327 motors came out, that again invited more folks to have another option to adapt the SBC into any vehicle or hot rod. The legacy continued for quite some time. It is still going on today, with many people using the very adaptable SBC motors in any hot rod. So, for a lot of us old guys, it is and will always be an SBC motor as traditional in our old hot rods, current hot rods and possible future hot rods. YRMV
    porknbeaner and Elcohaulic like this.
  20. MeanGene427
    Joined: Dec 15, 2010
    Posts: 1,623

    from Napa

    +1 on the anything but a Chebbie- especially a SBC. Nothing more boring to me than justanotherbellybuttonwithchromedoodadsandapotatocam. Yes, some folks build actual hot rod SBCs, but greatly outnumbered these days by the "cheap" potato-cam 'n chrome stuff. I like stuff to thump and rumble for real, and my favorite FE/ 427 Fords have always been the Kings of shagnasty- nothing makes more sweet/nasty noise short of a blower, and aftermarket parts have become very plentiful, one can build an inexpensive 500hp 445 stroker from a 352/360/390/410 block, aluminum heads and intake make it quite light. There are at least five outfits making different versions of aluminum heads, lots of valvetrain option including hydraulic rollers, stroker kits from mild to wild. One can also build an inexpensive 410/416 with stock parts that will pump out a lot of torque
  21. Jddjr
    Joined: Aug 18, 2020
    Posts: 6


    I had a 327 sbc and had to get rid of it. Got cancer in my left hip and couldn't push in the clutch anymore. Didnt want to put an auto behind it cause the torque would make it ride like grandma's car. I sold it and built a 451 stroker with a built 727 behind it. It was a tight fit but now it's stupid fast.
    Roothawg and Elcohaulic like this.
  22. 377 cid SBC, great torque and HP
    jimmy six, Roothawg and MCjim like this.
  23. Six Ball
    Joined: Oct 8, 2007
    Posts: 3,827

    Six Ball
    from Nevada

    I'm with the "can of worms"guy. "Best all around" doesn't exist until "Best" and "all around" are agreed upon by all which will never happen. :D From the get go all bangers and inlines were eliminated so 2/3 of the tradition is gone. :(. It's all a matter of opinions based on personal bias, experience, ignorance, and myth. It may come down to budget. The best is the one you have until you can afford to get something better. The best will be influenced by what it will REALLY be used for. In my case survival plays a part. I'm crazy and would not survive a blown big block in a T bucket. :eek: Back to the age old "difference of opinion is what makes. horse races." or HAMB threads? :rolleyes:
    And my vote: None of the above or all of the above.
    Blues4U likes this.
  24. Crocodile
    Joined: Jun 16, 2016
    Posts: 249


    I am a fan of the FE Ford, and most things Ford. Limiting the vote to 390 kind of sucks. I have had some really mean 390's in the past, but they built a lot of dogs that make the reputation poor. If you were being fair, 406 and 427's would be in the list. 410's and 428's don't make the HAMB cut, but my 49 Merc will run a 66 410 dressed to look older.
  25. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 21,128


    I didn't intentionally leave them out. 390 was the first thing that came to mind. I also left out the 352 and the 360, but you didn't mention that.... :)
    Crocodile and Blues4U like this.
  26. Actually harder on parts is more of a builder's/tuner's problem/solution.

    A high winding engine, with a light lower end, balanced and properly set up will take a beating and take it all day long. The idea being simple, big bore, short stroke set up loose spins and spins quick, but it does not pull until it is would up. On the other hand a long stroke small bore (think bore to stroke ratio and not actual bore size) can produce the same torque at a lower RPM.

    The winder is going to want deeper gears and will need to be the revved, to be kept up. Most people are not willing to or have the nerves for high rev cruising. So in most cases a power band in the lower RPM range is more desirable to the average driver.

    Two of my favorite cars in my time were revvers. One was a Boss powered OT Mustang and the other was a Z-28 (small journal) powered '64 Chevelle. Both wanted to be run at 4K and above. You know what that say, "High rev cruising is a Rush" :D

    I think it is a trade off.
    Blues4U likes this.
  27. ekimneirbo
    Joined: Apr 29, 2017
    Posts: 1,848

    from Brooks Ky

    It has been believed for a long time that a longer stoke in a specific size engine will produce more torque than the same engine size when achieved with use of a large bore. There are some minor considerations such as a larger bore affords the use of larger diameter valves.......but you can argue that other different factors also cancel out that benefit. Another thing is always which camshaft works best with each combination. If you use a longer stroke, the piston moves away from TDC more quickly and the valve can open quicker and fill the cylinder more. When its all said and done, they actually are pretty similar in the amount of power vs torque no matter which way the engine builder goes.
    Here is an article on the subject that may make some rethink that......or, maybe not.:D

    Bore vs Stroke 1.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 2.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 3.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 4.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 5.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 6.jpg
    Bore vs Stroke 6a.jpg

    Don't shoot me guys...........I'm just the messenger !:confused:
    Take a look at the torque of both engines at 2500 & 2800 rpms......hmmm
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
    Montana1 and Roothawg like this.
  28. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,634

    from oregon

    Another favorite of mine.

    -Brent- and porknbeaner like this.
  29. telecaster_6
    Joined: Dec 8, 2001
    Posts: 566

    from Dorr, Mi

    351 Cleveland 4v motor.... Peaky high rpm motor, perfect for a lightweight hot rod. Of course it needs a stick behind it... because real hot rods have 3 pedals..
  30. ekimneirbo
    Joined: Apr 29, 2017
    Posts: 1,848

    from Brooks Ky

    To me it looks like they pretty well equal out with basically no more than 3 hp or 3lbs/ft in most rpm comparisons. I think one maybe went up to 4 (rounding). Should also remember that there was a slight variation in cu in. Look at the bottom where the total average is calculated.
    Bore vs Stroke 6a2.jpg
    Elcohaulic likes this.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!


Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.