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pontiac 400 cam recommendations?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Ruiner, Feb 26, 2009.

  1. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Alright, I can't find my old thread anymore...here's the deal, I need to find a cam for a '76 400 with '71 350 heads (can't recall the casting number, roughly 9:1 compression), Offy 4bbl intake, custom made fenderwell headers, 600cfm Holley (possibly going to a 750dp), Pontiac posi rear with 3.23 gears and a TH350 w/stock converter (ick, I know, but it's already in and setup to run) all in a estimated 2300 pound '40 Plymouth with a straight axle...I'd like a solid lifter cam, would a hydraulic cam be a better investment? I'm not scared away by the maintenance of a solid lifter cam...let's hear some of your recommendations...I'm leaning towards an Isky cam, and leaning a LONG ways away from Comp Cams or Lunati...
     
  2. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,561

    zman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Garner, NC

  3. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Thanks! I literally spent 2 hours last night searching for that thread (I was watching World's Fastest Indian for the 40th time while searching on my phone's internet)...thanks again!
     
  4. zman
    Joined: Apr 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,561

    zman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Garner, NC

    It was easy, I went to your profile and looked at the threads you started. 1st page and everything....
     
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  5. 55chieftain
    Joined: May 29, 2007
    Posts: 2,180

    55chieftain
    Member

    Whats wrong with Comp cams?
     
  6. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Besides them making their cams all wonky? nothing...I'm usually too lazy to use a degree wheel when it's just a stock style cam grind...I just want to install it according to the timing marks and leave it alone...Comp Cams always seems to be a few degrees off...
     
  7. The 068 "S" cam seems to be a popular one. I bought one awhile back for my '78 400, but have not installed it yet. Got it from GMPartsDirect.com, part # 12364043, cam & lifter kit.

    The cam that's in it now has too much lift. .490-ish.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2009
  8. triathlonx13
    Joined: Jan 8, 2008
    Posts: 27

    triathlonx13
    Member

    I agree. Cams like the ram air 4 cam are a good all around cam. With out doing port work to your heads a 480.. to 490 lift is about the max.
     
  9. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    The RAIV cam is not a good all around cam, it's a high rev, big cube, 4.10 gear, high stall converter cam...the exact opposite of what I need...the 068 cam is, to my knowledge, not a Ram Air cam...
     
  10. Lot Lizard Racing
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 17

    Lot Lizard Racing
    Member

    The 068 is the milder Ram Air III cam. The earlier Ram Air III's came with the 744 cam but it was a little too rough.

    I believe that the Ram Air IV will be too much for your combination. With your relatively mild set up and stock torque converter I would use a Summit 2801. It's very similar to the 068 and very affordable. Tons of Pontiac people are using it.

    Here's a link comparing a lot of of the shelf and stock cams for Pontiacs:
    http://fiedlerh.home.att.net/PontiacCams.htm
     
  11. Rich Rogers
    Joined: Apr 8, 2006
    Posts: 2,019

    Rich Rogers
    Member

    why not Lunati ??Maybe I don't want to know cause I'm getting ready to put my 1st Lunati in a sbc
     
  12. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Lunati was brought up simply because I prefer older companies like Isky or Crane...
     
  13. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,424

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Lunati only makes single pattern cams for the Pontiac,basically copies of SBC grinds. Pontiacs prefer a dual pattern grind
     
  14. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    I read through the Nunzi website...I'm convinced...any idea what they cost?
     
  15. Rodder29
    Joined: Jan 26, 2009
    Posts: 184

    Rodder29
    Member

    I used a Crane Ram Air IV blueprint cam. It had a nice lopey idle, and power my '76 Trans Am nicely. That car had some port work done, .060 pistons, 11:1 compression, and an Edelbrock Torker intake with a Holley 750 double pump. That with 4:10 gears, powered the car to ET's in the low 13's high 12's.:D
     
  16. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Thanks, but that info is completely useless to me...and I certainly hope to pull those numbers, albeit in a much lighter car...
     
  17. Rodder29
    Joined: Jan 26, 2009
    Posts: 184

    Rodder29
    Member

    OOps, I responded before I read all of the posts (been drinkin') i didn't realize that you did not want a big performance cam. I used a few of the Crane cams(RIP) and liked them for their advertised uses. The Blazer cam that they had a few years ago was great for what you want. Nunzi is a good Pontiac guy as well.
     
  18. octoberflames
    Joined: Mar 29, 2008
    Posts: 57

    octoberflames
    Member

    well if you wanna run real fast use the COMP Magnum 305H. I'm into pontiac's pretty heavy and that is the best cam I've ever run. I've tried all the factory performance grinds RAM AIR cams,HO grinds, not even close. me and my buddy Big Block build a 455 with 6X heads, Magnum 305 cam, forged pistons, factory crank & rods, high rise intake Holley 850, 400 turbo, 12 bolt 4:11, 71 LeMans ran 10.60's at 138 mph. I'm telling ya, you won't be dissapointed.
     
  19. Falcon Gasser
    Joined: Aug 29, 2007
    Posts: 940

    Falcon Gasser
    Member

    I run a Isky part#901500 solid lifter cam in my Pontiac 400 in my Bantam altered. I run a stock convertor right now so it does not 60 foot as best as it could but it has moved the car down the track to a 10.60 @ 135 this past fall. I use #13 heads unported and Offy dual quad intake with two AFB's and TH350 with 3.75 gear out back. It is a little different combination then what you are putting together but I thought I would just put it out here. I would like to try a dual pattern cam down the road because I have read and heard that they work better with Pontiacs but this was a free new cam and lifters.

    Jon

    link to cam card
    http://www.iskycams.com/timingchart.php?product_number=901500

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  20. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Since I'm pretty much retarded, who makes dual pattern cams, what the hell is a dual pattern cam, and how do you tell the difference when looking at the cam specs between single and dual pattern?
     
  21. triathlonx13
    Joined: Jan 8, 2008
    Posts: 27

    triathlonx13
    Member


    You are not correct... sorry dude.
     
  22. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    I now know the 068 is a RAIII cam, but I stand by my statement about the RAIV cam...I'm so sick of people recommending that cam, it's the exact opposite of what I need...
     
  23. 55chieftain
    Joined: May 29, 2007
    Posts: 2,180

    55chieftain
    Member

    The duration is differant between the intake and exhaust side on a dual pattern. Like my single pattern Comp Magnum cam in my 389 is 230 intake/230 degrees exhaust both at .050" with .480 lift also on both the intake and exhaust. with a 110 degree lobe seperation.

    Another thing to pay attention to is advertised duration vs duration at .050. I usually prefer go with the duration lift at .050 than advertised duration. It's more accurate IMO.

    A dual pattern for instance may have a 220 intake/230 exhaust duration at .050". The lift may be differant as well on each side.

    A 068, summit 2801 like I recommended in your earlier thread, 744 (manual trans ra III cam) , or even a Crower 60916 (with enough compression) are all proven good cams in street driven 400's .



     
  24. Here is a bit of info for ya'.
    The '068' cam was used by Pontiac from 1965-1972. It is known as the "HO" cam primarily because it was used in 421, 428 and 455HO engines. It is also knonw as the 'tri power cam' because it was used in tri power GTOs in 1965 and 1966. It was also used on automatic ram air III in 1969 and all of 70 Ram air III.
    The '744" cam has more lump and more duration than the '068 and was used in the 69 Ram Air III with manual trans.

    The '041' ram air IV cam is a great cam. Sounds like a million dollars and makes good power.

    problem is with your combonation is your car will be a stone with any big cam using the heads and rear gear you are.

    The '041' cam is hard to beat for cost, sound, performance. If you change your mind and decide to try it, I would suggest advancing the cam 4 degrees when installing it. This will give you more power down low, where you need to get your car moving from a standing start.
    An inexpensive 2500-2,800 converter would do wonders for you and not cost much either. If you can run thei mentioned converter, set up the cam straight up without advancing it.


    Also, be aware that you will probably need at least a different valve spring and/or installed height. Most Pontiac heads, including yours, have a very modest installed height of around 1.55". Using much more lift than about .400" will/can cause coil bind. there are many variables and it is not difficult to understand but, you need to learn these things of you will have coil bind problems, maybe bent push rods, etc.
    Good luck and post some pics of your interesting car.

    Steve
    <DIR>Hosting- 7th annual Nostalgic Show and Go! and swap. Drags, cool car show, parade, special exhibitions, gassers, rails, stockers, customs and much more. coming Sunday April 5, 2009 to Speedworld. Phoenix, Az -This is Arizonas longest continuest running nostalgic event, our 7th year! www.nostalgicshowandgo.org
    Also Hosting- Hosting 11th annual Pontiac Heaven, show, swap, drags, party and all around good time. Saturday April 4, 2009 at Speedworld near Phoenix, Az more info- www.pontiacheaven.org
    </DIR>
     
  25. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    I may switch to a 1800-2100 stall converter since I have to swap transmissions anyway...I'll be calling Nunzi tomorrow for prices, and researching Isky solid cam grinds...as for pics of my car, you can search for River Valley Shaker, I had a few old build threads awhile back...thanks guys...
     
  26. duffman
    Joined: Feb 10, 2005
    Posts: 256

    duffman
    Member

    For your combo, gears in particular, the 068 cam and its knock-offs is a great cam, plenty of torque and manageable manners. The 744 cam works great with 4 speed and 3.50 ish gears and steeper, but will work also, nice lope. I have used these both with great success. I like the 041 or RA4 cam too but prefer it with more gear to get in its powerband. Although it does work great in 428/455s with less gear.
     
  27. Rodder29
    Joined: Jan 26, 2009
    Posts: 184

    Rodder29
    Member

    A dual pattern cam has different specs for intake, and exhaust.
     
  28. Ruiner
    Joined: May 17, 2004
    Posts: 4,145

    Ruiner
    Member

    Thanks, that was already answered, but thanks anyway...
     
  29. Play400
    Joined: Nov 29, 2006
    Posts: 47

    Play400
    Member

    Hey if you are looking for a decent cam why not call or e-mail these guys http://www.sdperformance.com/index.php and see what they say. I appreciate the old technology and prefer to go to the new guys who build around today's fuel. Some of the cams mentioned here need more that 9:1 compression. I'm running this Comp Cam in my 68 Firebird 400 and it is a real choppy hodrod cam. 3000k converter. And ofcourse it was 4# off when we dialed it in. The Lunati was 8# off if not mistaken

    PART NUMBER 51-314-4

    INTAKE MASTER 5240
    EXHAUST MASTER 5229
    ENGINE P8 280AH-10
    GRIND NUMBER P8 280AH-10
    INT EXH
    HYDRAULIC Y/N YES DUR @.050 232 237
    INT EXH LOBE LIFT .3220 .3220
    VALVE ADJUSTMENT HYD HYD ROCKER RATIO .00 .00
    MAX GROSS VALVE LIFT .481 .481
    DUR @ .006 TAPPET LIFT 280 288 LOBE SEPARATI 110.0
    ADVANCE 4
    VALVE TIMING OPEN CLOSE VALVE SPRINGS 995-16
    .006 INT 34 66
    EXH 78 30
    THESE SPECS ARE FOR CAM(S) INSTALLED
    106.0 INTAKE CENTERLINE


    Have a similar Lunati dual pattern in my 55 Pontiac's 462
     
  30. draggin'GTO
    Joined: Jul 7, 2003
    Posts: 1,754

    draggin'GTO
    Member

    I would use the Crower 60242 hydraulic cam in your 400 with the moderate compression ratio you have, stock torque converter and 3.23 gears. It's pretty much mid-way between the 068 HO/RA cam and 041RAIV, a little closer to the 068.

    Specs on it are 221/229 .456/.468 as compared to the 068 (212/225 .407/.407) and the 041 (230/240 .470/.470), all lifts are with 1.5: rockers

    It will work well with the stock converter and the gearing you have, and will respond nicely if you ever decide to put in a higher stall converter of around 2500-3000.

    The 60242 is the most popular street cam that my friend Ace at PPR sells, it's very versatile and good match for your combo. Here's a link to the cams on his website:

    http://www.pacificperformanceracing.com/products/cams-performance-racing.html

    Don't hesitate to give Ace a call. He also does business with Dave at SD Performance (mentioned in the post above) and gets a lot of his head work done at SD Performance. Both of these guys really know their Pontiacs, it's their livelyhood.

    Using the RAIV cam in your 400 would be a mistake without having a 3000 converter, 3.90 gears and at least 10:1 compression. The 068 is pretty mild and is considered a slightly-hotter stock replacement. The 068 is a good all-around choice and a safe bet if you're keeping everything in the valvetrain completely stock, expecially if you have heads with stock press-in studs.
     
    32Stoker likes this.

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