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Old January 1st, 2012, 10:36 AM   #1
FJ40powers
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Post 1970's 355 with vortec 350 head question

Hello fello Off roaders. Have a question for you.

I have a 355 in my landcruiser. Put some 70's truck heads on my engine when I built it. (76cc chambers) I know that this is bogging me down on power. Just picked up some Vortec heads off of a 1997 Tahoe. I have the stock Rockers and pushrods. I was wondering if they would work or do I need some special lengths.

How do I know for sure? Can I use my brand new z28 springs from my old Heads. I really havn't got a lot of experience with Cylinder head work.

I have some old 1964 Camel back heads that are in great shape. Was told the Vortec Heads are better. Any experiences or usable Knowledge?
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Old January 1st, 2012, 10:52 AM   #2
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You need guided rockers with the Vortec heads. Pushrods should be fine. From all I've read, out of the box Vortec's heads rival most early stock heads. They flow so much better. Horsepower in a box.
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Old January 1st, 2012, 10:55 AM   #3
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If using anything other than a stock cam, you will need to have the heads machined for springs and screw in studs. If using roller rockers you will need to use guide plates. Vortec heads are great but you have to put a little effort into them if add power goodies in the motor. You will also have to use a Vortec aftermarket intake if you run a carb and you have to use the Vortec head intake gasket.

Good luck.
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Old January 1st, 2012, 11:13 AM   #4
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Nothing fancy, I just had a set cleaned up at the machine shop, Basic z28 spring and valve job, added comp retainers and Im good for .500 lift. NO extra machine work done had less than $200 into them. GREAT head for the $$$$$.

You should be able to use the springs you have just remove the inner spring. And check your install height, the vortec should be at 1.750.

The stock stamped rockers can NOT be used. A set of aftermarket 1.5 rollers will do ya. NO guide plates or screw studs needed.

I think the Push rod length is 7.2 or 7.8 going brain dead on that one.......

Last edited by DaHos; January 1st, 2012 at 11:19 AM.
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Old January 1st, 2012, 11:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FJ40powers View Post
Hello fello Off roaders. Have a question for you.

I have a 355 in my landcruiser. Put some 70's truck heads on my engine when I built it. (76cc chambers) I know that this is bogging me down on power. Just picked up some Vortec heads off of a 1997 Tahoe. I have the stock Rockers and pushrods. I was wondering if they would work or do I need some special lengths.

How do I know for sure? Can I use my brand new z28 springs from my old Heads. I really havn't got a lot of experience with Cylinder head work.

I have some old 1964 Camel back heads that are in great shape. Was told the Vortec Heads are better. Any experiences or usable Knowledge?
Email this guy: enginecraft@aol.com

Dave @ enginecraft will know the answers to all of your questions and if you need anything, he can do the work at very competitive prices. He's done a lot of motors for people on this site.
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Old January 1st, 2012, 01:06 PM   #6
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THanks for all the good insite. Answered a lot of my questions and confirmed my thoughts.

Not sure about the rockers and pushrods yet though. Wondered why the stock rockers wouldn't work. Seems like I would need pushrod Guides if Rollers were used.

I am going to order an aftermarket Performer Edlebrock intake unless I can find one used at a reasonable cost.

How about cam selection for Off Road Use. You guys all using low RPM camshafts like 1,000-4,500 low lift cams for your off road. I looked at the Howards cam that was a .470 straight grind and was rated for 1700-5500 and then the .435 straigh grind was 1000-4500 or something like that. I would like to keep my HP and TQ low in the RPM range for Light to Light street action and Trails. Any thoughts on that?
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Old January 3rd, 2012, 09:51 AM   #7
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Email this guy: enginecraft@aol.com

Thanks! Dave really knows his stuff. Very big help. Going to try and send him some business for all his insight!
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Old January 5th, 2012, 06:44 AM   #8
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Dave is an outstanding guy - and as you found out - actually takes the time to answer your questions and explain things.
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