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Hot Rods When is it time to give up tradition over being practical?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Roothawg, Feb 18, 2018.

  1. willowbilly3
    Joined: Jun 18, 2004
    Posts: 4,356

    Member Emeritus
    from Sturgis

    I'm still a fan of the small journal sbc. 30 some years ago we had a roundy round dirt car with a 283 block, 327 crank and bored .060 to make about 316 c.i. we had a 320 limit so 327s weren't legal. Ours was a well built engine and we got 3-4 seasons from the same bottom end running about 7800 rpms at the end of the straight aways. Nobody with a large journal ever got more than one season on a lower end.
    Going fast just takes cubic money. How fast do you want to go?
    bobss396 and tb33anda3rd like this.
  2. finn
    Joined: Jan 25, 2006
    Posts: 980


    Didn’t read the whole thread, but it seems like the op is asking how to become partially pregnant.

    You can’t.

    You either have a traditional car and accept the speed it is capable of, or you say “damn tradition”, and build a modern race car.

    In his case, the car sounds like it’s at practical limits for the setup, and the next level is a modern, non traditional engine, followed shortly by a modern suspension, tires, and drivetrain.

    If your coal is to be as fast as a modern car, will end up building a modern car.

    The guys at the Meltdown who were running 16,17,18 seconds down the track seemed to be having fun, at least in my eyes.

    Being partially pregnant never seemed to work out back when I went to high school.
    LOU WELLS and alanp561 like this.
  3. My 350 build originally was set at $2000, better heads and a cam, not that much else. Long story made short, the only 2 OG pieces are the block and crank, which was cut. It was a good opportunity for me to work with a local legendary engine builder. It topped out at $5500 with the carb, balanced clutch and flywheel.

    I believe in spending my $$ once and not having to re-do something down the road. Reliability is at the top of my list. Nothing worse than breaking down 200 miles from home.
    Roothawg likes this.
  4. mcsfabrication
    Joined: Nov 26, 2006
    Posts: 992


    The time is when it suits yourself.
    LOU WELLS likes this.
  5. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 6,853


    We usually do things together in our family. When I first had an old stock 40 Ford Sedan Delivery in high school, regardless of what was done to it, it was a reliable driver. As a teenager, I enjoyed the million miles driven all over So Cal.
    But, later when relationships were just as important, another 40 Ford Sedan Delivery was adjusted to have "creature comforts" to suit my wife. We only had non A/C cars until we had A/C in this newish, 40 Sedan Delivery. OK, that was the main practical thing. The other was an automatic transmission.

    There were plenty of guys driving old style hot rods and when we saw them/they us, it was a mutual respect for the style of cars and equipment. No stick trans, no flathead, who cares...After all, it was hot rodding and no one puts limits on your enjoyment.

    The newer 40 Ford Sedan Delivery looked like my old high school version, but it had an SBC/auto and full upholstery front to rear. The funny thing was, we saw one that had a 4 speed in it, but the idea of shifting for my wife was not the central thing.
    A few years after we sold the latest sedan delivery with the SBC/auto/AC, I taught her how to shift a 5 speed transmission and for the next 24 years(two cars), she was a stick shift (5 speed) fanatic. Who would have guessed. We all adapt to the situation at hand for the sake of a long lasting relationship.
    LOU WELLS and pitman like this.
  6. bobwop
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 6,096


    go with your heart. The only man you need to impress is yourself
    Roothawg likes this.
  7. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 50,931


    Anyone can go fast with modern stuff. It takes serious brain damage to want to go fast with old stuff. And when you do so, you've accomplished something that few today will even attempt.

    But most guys won't understand.
  8. To stay small journal is not cheap but also not less reliable. The truth is that if you are spinning it tight you really want a small journal motor, less bearing speed.

    If you want an after market crank you can get a scat in small journal for the same prices as a large h journal. Yea scat crank doesn't sound as cool as say Callies or the like but its about going fast and not name dropping right?

    Instead of 4 bolt mains you may also consider stud mounting your mains and running s stud girdle. Cheaper than the spayed caps and you can actually make your own with the use of a plasma cutter or a jig saw.

    The small journal blocks are a little harder to come buy but I got an idea that there are a couple around that could be had worth the money. 327 or 283.

    It is a matter of desire I think. I run large journal motors, and wish that I could find a genuine large journal 327 or 283 crank so destroke. I look at it this way, if I wanted to spend the bucks I could find one but I am happy with what I got. My desire is just not that strong.

    So I am sure that it is just a matter of desire. ;)
  9. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 22,500


    PnB, I don't think SCAT offers a sj crank. If you find one, please let me know.

    I think what I will probably do is update the 301 with some better more modern heads and the injectors that I just bought and see where we go from there. I get on Dart's website and it spins me up, gets me all crazy.

    I really want to stick to history, it may take a while but we could get it to run quicker. It may not be easier, but then again, I always tend to follow that path less traveled. Maybe there are guys out there like me that are planning on going to the Meltdown drags that I could match race with.
    saltracer219 and bchctybob like this.
  10. Kurt
    Joined: Nov 18, 2003
    Posts: 698


    had cars in the past that were traditional and had a blast with them. But always had reservations about long hauls down the road. Now as im older practicality is stepping in. The truck im working on now for the missus is going to be all updated underneath and drivetrain. The body is being left as is. She want the look but reliability.
    So ive been deciding on motor and have stumbled on these pics and have spent a lot of time studying them. Stupid hp and dependable. Most people wouldn't even know the difference retro-ls.jpg image1.jpg
    raven likes this.
  11. When my son and I built and raced a TAFC we could have won every race including the national championship
    And it would not have made enough money to pay the fuel bill for the tractor pulling the trailer.
    My point is we do it for the love of the sport. And yes it is very expensive,time consuming . The whole family worked as the crew. Great memories.
    Do what makes YOU happy and enjoy.
    Good luck
    Terry aka dirt t
  12. Mr T body
    Joined: Nov 2, 2005
    Posts: 2,204

    Mr T body
    Alliance Vendor
    from BHC AZ

    If it were a street car I would be more concerned about "traditional" as it really is appearance only. If you are keeping traditional internal components, that's a mental thing not a performance thing. That's why hotrodders went to strokers. They realized decades ago that traditional only goes so far. If you're racing, build it. if you're driving it in parades, looks is fine.
  13. Since you said this is all rhetorical, I will state my opinion without reading all 3 pages.
    If you have the car for exhibition fun, then its irrelevant that you can't compete with the modern high power cars. But if you really want to chase the dragon then do what you gotta do.
    Roothawg likes this.
  14. Do it old school,
    Get the large journal crank and offset grind it. Now it's Stroked and small journal
    If you want to keep the 3" stroke it ought to rev just past the moon, that means some dough in the valve train. There's aluminum heads that are dead copy of the old double hump that breath a lot better. Add some compression and run it on Alcohol with a better bottom end.
    Put the thing on a diet and drop a few hundred pounds.

    Less weight, more "old school" cubes, more revs, more compression just add alcohol :) and you'll go faster. Study your rear end connection and make it launch straight ahead instead of straight up and you'll be a lot quicker with your 301. You can still have it solid mounted but connect it differently.
  15. You have to pick up the phone and ask. You can get a small journal crank from scat you just can't get one off the shelf and they don't charge any more for it than the large journal. Built a 301/302 a few years back using a small journal 327 block for a guy.

    If you are already running side mounts no one will know you get a dart block unless they actually get up close and personal with it. I am not sure anyone cares so it is just a matter of what makes you happy. No one is going to fault you for running a large journal motor. Gawd knows I wouldn't not that it makes any difference, I'll feel the same about you either way. ;)

    Or if you want to remain totally old school and want a real deal race motor I am putting my 394 and hydromatic up for sale. I need the cash to complete my Crosley build. LOL
  16. lcfman
    Joined: Sep 1, 2009
    Posts: 334

    from tn

    When its safety related otherwise do what makes you happy. Hot rodding is all about individual taste , I don't want every hot rod to look a like, that's what production daily drivers are for. I plan on building a 32 Ford to 1963 specs, but am not going to comprise safety or reliability for period looks. This is not the NCRS!
    Joined: Jan 13, 2004
    Posts: 2,769


    I have managed to have some cool cars and some fast cars in my 71 years. Now I'm putting together what will probably be the Worlds slowest 57 Imitation Gasser.The old 283 is tired ,but thats ok if it had any horses the Saginaw would not last . This car is like I had in the 60s, don't care if it runs fast ,just trying to be young again. We all have different reasons for doing this car stuff . Hell a friend is into old Harleys ,you know back when they leaked oil. The grin on his face when he pulls up to the garage here is tremendous . Maybe thats reason enough to not worry how authenic it is , just go have fun with it .
    Finn Jensen, pitman and Stogy like this.
  18. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 22,500


  19. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 23,078


    @Roothawg maybe @JOECOOL is onto something...perhaps get the ole Fly streetlegal and it will open a new perspective and still keep her authentic and apply mods in a vintage way as pioneering change as @Moriarity said doesn't come easy but it's fellas like you that can squeeze it a bit more so to speak.
    Moriarity likes this.
  20. pitman
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 5,151


    Yikes! Dang magicians! Alchemical Displacement wizards ;) 434 CI
  21. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 22,500


    Yeah, The Fly would never be street legal. It's too far to ever get there.
    Articles like this give me hope.
    saltracer219 and Stogy like this.
  22. badvolvo
    Joined: Jul 25, 2011
    Posts: 472


    It was a few years ago for me, when my 10.5 second car got beat by a honda.
    I am currently building a gasser inspired street freak, with a 632" tall deck. I want to go fast on pump gas and run around on the street. I was going a more traditional route, but with the OEM's putting out 700+ in today's cars I needed more than I can get with a pump gas traditional motor. I feel like I gotta be kinda fast, to keep up the reputation of old school drag cars.
    I have a 49 Willys truck, with a flathead v8 and all vintage parts, cool, but slow and it's family.
    The way I look at it today, If it's not a LS, it's traditional, just a tradition that is not quite as old. If I was building a "modern" car, it would be a twin turbo LS, 2400 lbs and run the 1/8 in 4. some seconds at stupid mph.
  23. wvenfield
    Joined: Nov 23, 2006
    Posts: 5,478


    I like loud and getting beat but not at the expense of the family budget.
  24. buffaloracer
    Joined: Aug 22, 2004
    Posts: 807

    from kansas

    I'm building an NHRA stock eliminator car that I hope is as fast as my tow truck. Hardly anybody gets it and I could mostly care less.. Suit yourself. I know which way I'd go but it's your deal.
    dana barlow likes this.
  25. 51farmtruck
    Joined: Jul 23, 2007
    Posts: 884


    Tickety Boo, Roothawg and dana barlow like this.
  26. dana barlow
    Joined: May 30, 2006
    Posts: 4,691

    dana barlow
    from Miami Fla.
    1. Y-blocks

    Seem to be asking what ya gon'a do now,on todays street driving. We can't drive in the passed{need time machine for that},there are a lot of things now that turns things I got away with when I was driving in the late 50s an 60's bad,higher speed roads,cars around me can stop way faster with there 4wheel disk brakes n even ABS,=even many of todays drivers are on the cellphones etc. So what dose that all mean to my old hot rod,that I still enjoy n still actully driving now= I for sure have too have better brakes then I had in 1950s,I also really need better tires,both do too the cars around me on the road{ So radiel tires/better ride an better control,front wheel brakes added,if you had only rears. Better brighter headlights n tail/that also going to need a amp charging for todays bat. Seat belts,yes,but still I'll pass on airbags. Now if your only going to drive in to an off the trailer,none of that matters. I'm still driving the same hotrod I built as a kid for high school,but dose have rediel tires now an better brakes,an I replaced the gen. with a alt. The rest looks the very much as it did in 1959,so I'm happy with it.

    Attached Files:

  27. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,979


    Traditional ain't too cool just sitting as a pile of parts with no hope of getting on road. Been there, trust me. Do what you need to do to get it on the road.
    dana barlow likes this.
  28. banjorear
    Joined: Jul 30, 2004
    Posts: 3,979


    Word. Crazy what a junk yard motor and a big Chinese turbo and a new cam does for these motors.
  29. Kerrynzl
    Joined: Jun 20, 2010
    Posts: 2,283


    I agree, an LS6 or LS7 BBC
    Moriarity and Montana1 like this.
  30. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 22,500


    You guys are gonna get my thread closed.

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