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Old 10-11-2011, 10:15 PM   #1
iandm
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Default Cost of engine rebuild?

I have a 77 vette that i want to have 400+ hp... Does anyone know how to estimate cost. I dont want to get ripped off by engine shop. What parts can be reused normally. Any suggestions/ personal setups and costs will help
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Old 10-11-2011, 11:02 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iandm View Post
I have a 77 vette that i want to have 400+ hp... Does anyone know how to estimate cost. I dont want to get ripped off by engine shop. What parts can be reused normally. Any suggestions/ personal setups and costs will help
I spent about $3500 for a total rebuild; about $800 for machine work alone (tanked, bored, decked, balanced, crank cut, pistons installed on rods, NPT plugs w/oil holes, etc). New pistons, rods, engine kit, (flat tappet) cam, intake, rockers, etc. Good heads are the biggest expense--about half the total cost for this one. Also, this is with me doing the assembly. Think seriously about a crate engine... Wish I did.
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Old 10-11-2011, 11:23 PM   #3
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Just picked mine up from the machine shop... $1250, included new pistons (.030 over), tanking, crank polish, engine rebuild kit, cam, lifters, valve springs, valve job, valve adjustment and assembly... Also had my old intake, valve covers, timing chain cover tanked and cleaned up... I won't be using these at this time, but I'll paint, wrap and store... I was planning on assembling the engine myself, but for $300, I figured a new torque wrench, ring compressors, etc would almost set me back that much... Just let the guys that do this for a living put it together for me... One less thing to worry about...

They have me pretty worried about initial startup and break-in... Explaining how modern oils don't have the level of zinc (and something else)... Said to find a ZDDP additive for initial break-in and use another can at the first oil change... Last time I rebuilt an engine was 1986 or 87, so never encountered this new phenomenon...

I won't be anywhere near 400 hp, but thought I'd give you my machine shop costs...

Rogman
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:44 AM   #4
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Its almost like asking a surgeon how much surgery is going to cost. Probably get close estimates however I would imagine until the shop tears it down, there is probably going to be hidden cost.
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Old 10-12-2011, 11:03 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by iandm View Post
...I dont want to get ripped off by engine shop...
Do it yourself. The smallblock Chevrolet is not rocket science. There are several How-To books covering everything from stock to hot rodding. Buy two or three and read through them.

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Old 10-12-2011, 12:16 PM   #6
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Here is a great beginner video for those of us that aren't a fan of reading. It is very very good video. Well worth the price.

http://store.boxwrench.net/Basic-Eng...g-DVD_p_8.html
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Old 10-12-2011, 01:25 PM   #7
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Go look at the crate Performance motors at Pace Performance, in Ohio. You just cant beat those deals as compared to rebuilding, plus you get a GM warranty.

example:
http://paceperformance.com/i-5146077...ck-finish.html
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Old 10-12-2011, 02:03 PM   #8
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go with a crate motor and save yours, do NOT exchange it for the core price if you have a numbers matching car!
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Old 10-12-2011, 02:03 PM   #9
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PS stock rebuild on mine was about 1800 total
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Old 10-12-2011, 04:37 PM   #10
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my engine rebuild into a 390hp 383 stroker cost me $3500 complete (out of car, machine work, rebuild with a 383 stroker kit, new heads, distributor, cam, etc, and back in the car running). i guess it depends on where you live as to what you will pay. i did some research at the time (about 8 months ago) and to accomplish what i wanted with a crate engine from a reliable concern was close to $1000 more.
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Old 10-12-2011, 06:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikejpss View Post
Go look at the crate Performance motors at Pace Performance, in Ohio. You just cant beat those deals as compared to rebuilding, plus you get a GM warranty.

example:
http://paceperformance.com/i-5146077...ck-finish.html
After giving it much thought, I pulled my OEM motor and have it sitting on a dolly. I put in a ZZ4. I figured the cost would be the same. Now I can run the bejeesus out of the ZZ4 without worrying about blowing it up and if I do, so be it. I'll let the next caretaker deside what he wants to do concerning a rebuild of the OEM motor and if he/she wants to put it back in. As of now, it's comfortablly sitting in my garage.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogman16 View Post
Just picked mine up from the machine shop... $1250, included new pistons (.030 over), tanking, crank polish, engine rebuild kit, cam, lifters, valve springs, valve job, valve adjustment and assembly... Also had my old intake, valve covers, timing chain cover tanked and cleaned up... I won't be using these at this time, but I'll paint, wrap and store... I was planning on assembling the engine myself, but for $300, I figured a new torque wrench, ring compressors, etc would almost set me back that much... Just let the guys that do this for a living put it together for me... One less thing to worry about...

They have me pretty worried about initial startup and break-in... Explaining how modern oils don't have the level of zinc (and something else)... Said to find a ZDDP additive for initial break-in and use another can at the first oil change... Last time I rebuilt an engine was 1986 or 87, so never encountered this new phenomenon...

I won't be anywhere near 400 hp, but thought I'd give you my machine shop costs...

Rogman
Thats a great price for all that work.....Good Luck
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:55 PM   #13
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Thanks Tim... I was very impressed with their work... This machine shop came highly recommended from a number of folks in Vegas...

Rogman
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:43 PM   #14
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Rogman, I rebuilt my motor last winter basic rebuild much like you are looking to do, I did all the work myself except the machine work and spent around $1500.00. I went form the stock 190hp to just over 300hp with just some mild mods. The motor turned out great I couldn't be happier with the way it runs. Create motors are probably a better deal in the long run for some people but I enjoyed doing it myself and knowing exactly what went into the build...
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:05 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim81 View Post
Rogman, I rebuilt my motor last winter basic rebuild much like you are looking to do, I did all the work myself except the machine work and spent around $1500.00. I went form the stock 190hp to just over 300hp with just some mild mods. The motor turned out great I couldn't be happier with the way it runs. Create motors are probably a better deal in the long run for some people but I enjoyed doing it myself and knowing exactly what went into the build...
I am in agreement with this post. I stay away from body work, don't like but can do some wiring, etc. But I really prefer to assemble my own engines. Being in the line of work I am in I do have access to precision measuring equipment and I have an excellent machine shop nearby and I have done a few engine rebuilds and build from scratch in the past. It really depends on where you are in the hobby. If you are looking for quick and reasonable then a turn key crate motor may be your best option. If you want the experience of building your own and knowing exactly what you have, and you have the time to spend, then you may want to consider going that way. As someone said earlier a SBC is not rocket science, they are not trivial but they are manageable and there is so much material out there to study, learn from and follow that it may be worth considering.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:21 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by 68/BB View Post
I am in agreement with this post. I stay away from body work, don't like but can do some wiring, etc. But I really prefer to assemble my own engines. Being in the line of work I am in I do have access to precision measuring equipment and I have an excellent machine shop nearby and I have done a few engine rebuilds and build from scratch in the past. It really depends on where you are in the hobby. If you are looking for quick and reasonable then a turn key crate motor may be your best option. If you want the experience of building your own and knowing exactly what you have, and you have the time to spend, then you may want to consider going that way. As someone said earlier a SBC is not rocket science, they are not trivial but they are manageable and there is so much material out there to study, learn from and follow that it may be worth considering.
I agree completely. I am in the hobby to learn and experience the things that working on cars has to offer. I am getting ready to start a 383 build and have been researching and reading for the last several months. I have done the majority of the body and interior myself and found it to be very rewarding in the end to be able to say that I did the work myself and to know what materials were used and the attention to detail.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:25 PM   #17
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My rebuild is costing 5k. I took my original engine in for a clean and inspect. The 40 yr old engine was worn, but had no cracks. It had been apart before, but was still a standard bore and crank. I got an estimate to rebuild the engine using what parts were usable and an estimate to rebuild it using a new rotating assembly. I already had looked into crate engines and knew what the cost was to buy new.
I decided to rebuild mine into a 383, update to roller lifters, roller rockers, forged rotating assembly, stud the main caps, new aluminum RHS heads, new aluminum intake, polished timing chain cover, polished valve covers, new oiling system, and large capacity oil pan, and have them do the complete assemble.

My decision was based on this. I would rather have the original numbers matching block in the car rather than taking up space in my garage. Also rebuilding my engine vs a new crate engine was still cheaper. You can buy low hp crate engines pretty cheap. Even strokers for a good price. But when you look into forged internals and blue printed assembly's the price goes up quickly. A reason I let the engine shop assemble it is simple. They do this stuff for a living. They know the little tricks. The cost to assemble was only $300, vs me taking several days to get it done and maybe overlooking something. Also , I'm overhauling the complete car from frame up. It has given me more than enough other projects to do myself.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:45 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunstroked View Post
My rebuild is costing 5k. I took my original engine in for a clean and inspect. The 40 yr old engine was worn, but had no cracks. It had been apart before, but was still a standard bore and crank. I got an estimate to rebuild the engine using what parts were usable and an estimate to rebuild it using a new rotating assembly. I already had looked into crate engines and knew what the cost was to buy new.
I decided to rebuild mine into a 383, update to roller lifters, roller rockers, forged rotating assembly, stud the main caps, new aluminum RHS heads, new aluminum intake, polished timing chain cover, polished valve covers, new oiling system, and large capacity oil pan, and have them do the complete assemble.

My decision was based on this. I would rather have the original numbers matching block in the car rather than taking up space in my garage. Also rebuilding my engine vs a new crate engine was still cheaper. You can buy low hp crate engines pretty cheap. Even strokers for a good price. But when you look into forged internals and blue printed assembly's the price goes up quickly. A reason I let the engine shop assemble it is simple. They do this stuff for a living. They know the little tricks. The cost to assemble was only $300, vs me taking several days to get it done and maybe overlooking something. Also , I'm overhauling the complete car from frame up. It has given me more than enough other projects to do myself.
Sun, you stated every reason that I rebuilt original engine and let the pros do the assembly... I've put together several chevy and mopar small blocks, but it has been over 20 years... I've been able to work other projects during the week it would've probably taken me if I assembled it... Could have, but chose not to on this rebuild... May regret it later, but happy with my choice at this point in time...

Rogman
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Old 10-13-2011, 06:22 PM   #19
iandm
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Thanks for all the great advice. I know i sound crazy but i dont care about number matching. I am not worried about resale or anything. When it comes down to performance and reliability is a rebuild better than crate if cost is the same?
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Old 10-14-2011, 09:14 AM   #20
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Buy a crate. Then you don't even have to think about whether the engine builder really knows about what fits what, and if the parts really match up. Take the easy way out if numbers don't matter and you aren't doing it yourself. There won't be so many surprises in the costs either.
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Old 10-14-2011, 09:14 AM
 
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