I rebuilt a 350 to the specs I got from a budget build in Car Craft. It's .030 over flat top zero deck height. I am using aluminum vortec heads with 2.02/1.60 and springs that will handle the lift of the cam. The cam is a Comp Thumpr, it's the middle one - I don't have the cam card in the house - flat tappet. Straight cut timing gears. I'm using an Air-Gap intake and a 750 Eldebrock. The one in the mag made 420/420ish so I hope I'm in that range.
I have a 700r4 in it now but am contemplating switching over to a 4-speed that I already have. It would be more fun to drive as a stick, maybe faster as an auto, though.
The rear is a 3.73 10 bolt with an Eaton Tru-Track. The nice thing is that it is 58" wide, so when I relocated the spring perches under the frame I had ton's of room for the 8.5" Americans. I am also using Cal-Tracs for traction. I know slappers or ladder bars are more period but these things should work well.
I hope to take it down the track a few times, not too fast. I don't have a roll bar and not sure if I want to put one in.
I am going to build a thread on what I've done so far. It's been about 4 years so far, tho I didn't really work on it much this year.
Mike, I agree that if you're mostly going to use it on the street, then the 4 speed would be the most fun. If serious for the track, the auto's are sure more consistent. When I was younger and had a 1957 Chevy, I had a 4 speed in it and really enjoyed it. Once I find my next Tri Five, I plan on having a 4 or 5 speed in it. I used to love the sound of glass packs, while decelerating in 2nd or 3rd gear! I guess I'm planning on re-creating my youth!
Put the engine on the test stand tonight. Just getting it ready to break in the cam. I'm running an ignition box and electric fuel pump, so there's a bit more work to get it set up to start.
I think that all along the problem I was having with not liking any of the automatic shifters I was looking to put in the car was that I wanted a 4-speed. There's something about shifting through the gears. That's why I converted my '94 Impala to a 6-speed. It's a lot more fun to drive as a stick!
My first gasser was a 1955 Chevy, with a 283 built as far as I coul take it using dual carter afb's. I ran a 4 spd also, and it might have hurt times, but launching with the front wheels in the air was easier, and more fun! I ran two really large hi flow mufflers on mine and it was deceivingly quiet! Couldn't hide much with the gasser stance, but there were always those guys who figured if it wasn't loud it couldn't be fast! And they usually got surprised.
Stick with that 4 speed!!! Everybody sez you can't be consistent...not necessarily true, or if it is true it's not usually the fault of the tranny!!! My last bracket car (sold it last fall) was a '70 Maverick, Windsor engine with a Liberty pro shifted T-10.... Best outing for consistency was a Friday night bracket race---5 runs within .070 seconds was good enough to bring home the big check.. I always run a 5" tach with a shift light and many rounds of racing have taught me not to anticipate but just shift off the light. Another thing essential for consistency with a 4 or 5 speed is to keep up with the clutch adjustments and do the same burnout every round. Next time someone tells you that manual transmissions can't be consistent, tell them to go tell that to the guys who run Pro Stock!!!!!
Got the clutch pedal assembly at the swap meet the other day. It was cheap and has all the little stops and things that I need to add to my auto assembly. I've been working on another car and it has to get finished before I can work on the '55.