I have googled till my fingers bled, and can not come up with the answer, so
I thought I would throw out my thoughts and get some feedback.
My intension on with this car is not a restoration. It also not a straight
line car. I want a car that will handle itself in the curves, and give me
decent top end. With that in mind, here is what I have.
1969 Firebird convertable
250 in line six OHC single barrel
3 speed Saginaw manual.
What I have now:
When I bought it I got the 250 and 3 speed, but the previous owner installed
a 1964(?) 326 with a one barrel and 4 speed(unsure of make).
So now that I have graduated college (it took 15 years, but I made it) the
wife has OK'd the funds for the car. here are my thoughts:
The 326 is a V8, and sounds good(sounded good 10 years ago) but looking at
specs, it looks like the H.O. puts out 285hp and 329 ft lb with a 10.25
compression head. I assume with a cam, maybe heads, and a decent
carb/intake I may be able to boost that to the low 300's hp and high 300's
torque wise. But where would I find such heads? Intakes, cams, and carbs
can be taken from the 400/455 group of Pontiac motors, but the heads are
useless, as they will kill the compression(or so I am led to believe from
google). Top this off with the fact that the 326 is only 30 lbs less
(again from google) and that the 326 did not come with the '69 'bird I am
struggling to justify fighting with this engine to squeeze the horses out
Now the 250 OHC appeals to me on a few levels. First it is the engine that
came with the car. Second with this engine my 'bird would not be "just
another V8 firbird", and could be something that would have people talking
about it.(Even if it is "hey remember that old fat guy with the 6 cylinder
firebird") Also it is lighter than the V8, although longer. With the
sprint head, cam, and manifold it can put out 230 hp and 260ft lb. Now I
would say that I could get some more out of it, but after searching the
I'net I have come up empty handed. Is this block the same as the Chevy
250? are parts interchangeable, or is this a Pontiac only motor? On one
board, (forgot to bookmark, and long since gone off my history) one guy
talked about swapping the crank with a Chevy 292, but I have found nothing
else about it. I really love the idea of tricking out a sprint engine and
getting it to it real potential (keeping the car streetable though). Even
customizing a fuel injection system would be cool, but again, I only found
them for Chevy's.
So that is my dilemma for the engines. Do I build up the 326, the 250, or
do I start looking for a 400/455. I tend to think if I go with a new motor
I will go with a 455. Speaking of which, is the 4 bolt main that important
on these engines?
Moving on. I have done research on suspensions, and only really found 7
1. Bone Stock
2. Stock with better bushings.
3 -7 one of Global wests systems.
For what I want, bone stock is really not an option. Looking at GW's hype
page, if they all live up to their hype, I LOVE the cat 5 system. I have
to wonder though if it is worth the bucks. it is about a 3 gran difference
according to there site between that and the Cat 3, which looking at the
hype page would be my second choice. And that is about 1-2 gran more than
a "improved" stock.
So is Global West worth the cash? is there another option? I will want to
replace all the brakes with disk, so that has to be considered. I am also
planning on putting in frame ties, and I do like GW's ties, at least what I
can find on them. The ones at YearOne looks more "stockish" but I am
concerned about the stress points with square tube.
I am fairly versed at doing my own maintenance, and have plenty of time to
take my time and do this right. I know these sound like newbie questions,
and they are, but I will be researching and doing it slowly to get it done.
I need to make these decisions, so I can get a solid direction (not to
mention budget). I appreciate any input you guys (or gals) can give me so I
can make my decision.
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