454SS 230hp remedy

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scottcleaver
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454SS 230hp remedy

Post by scottcleaver » Sat Apr 28, 2018 4:56 pm

I just bought an edgy 1990 454SS truck. It's going to be a cheap adventure compared to most things I do i hope. The old truck runs pretty well for 230hp but it's embarrassing to have those SS badges but be pretty weak by today's standards. I want to get better than the 13 miles to the gallon and I think the girl runs too many RPM'S so im going to change rear gears from 3.73 to a 3.42. Now, if you wanted to take some of the low horsepower embarrassment out of the truck and increase the fuel mileage how would you build at least 400hp as inexpensive as possible? It will remain the same 454SS engine it came with. Street manners are important on this build. Im probably going with a new self learning EFI system. Any thoughts are appreciated. Thanks Scott

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Headguy » Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:00 pm

Cam, springs, tune, headers adjustble fpr and a Bosch 044.
218/218 108 will easily add 100hp and still have vacuum.

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by B Original » Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:50 pm

Pistons and a stroker Crank 2

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Headguy » Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:52 pm

B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:50 pm
Pistons and a stroker Crank 2
The guy wants to make less than 1hp/cube.. do you think he really needs to stroke it? That's just a waste of money

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by B Original » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:13 pm

Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:52 pm
B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:50 pm
Pistons and a stroker Crank 2
The guy wants to make less than 1hp/cube.. do you think he really needs to stroke it? That's just a waste of money
?? That's an irrelevant statement. Stroking is increasing the cubes so should be no problem keep it under 1hp for Cube
Maybe instead of your supposition of 1HP/cube you should have used the term inexpensive in your snarky comment lol. That will be hard not to do by accident. Your suggestions will be difficult to limit the engine to less than 1hp/cube. A good fuel efficient BBC is usually 1.1-1.2 go per cube. IF you get less than that you have to sacrifice less than optimal choices to keep the HP#'s low
Last edited by B Original on Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Carnut1 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:16 pm

Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:00 pm
Cam, springs, tune, headers adjustble fpr and a Bosch 044.
218/218 108 will easily add 100hp and still have vacuum.
That will work with the aftermarket f.i. but the stock tbi will puke.
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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Carnut1 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 pm

I would save $ and keep the gears. I would use a bit bigger cam than headguy states, nice intake with aftermarket f.i. and see where you are.
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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Headguy » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 pm

B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:13 pm
Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:52 pm
B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:50 pm
Pistons and a stroker Crank 2
The guy wants to make less than 1hp/cube.. do you think he really needs to stroke it? That's just a waste of money
?? That's an irrelevant statement. Stroking is increasing the cubes so should be no problem keep it under 1hp for Cube
Maybe instead of your supposition of 1HP/cube you should have used the term inexpensive in your snarky comment lol. That will be hard not to do by accident. Your suggestions will be difficult to limit the engine to less than 1hp/cube. A good fuel efficient BBC is usually 1.1-1.2 go per cube. IF you get less than that you have to sacrifice less than optimal choices to keep the HP#'s low
Does he need to stroke it to make 400hp?

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Ericnova » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:22 pm

You do realize the swap of 3.42 gears is almost worthless....with a 28" tire diameter you are barely dropping 250RPM @ 70 mph if this is the early SS 454 truck with the TH-375 trans.

If you really want to lower cruise rpm and help fuel mileage you're going to have to make either a bigger gear change or go to an overdrive trans.

if it is the later version with the overdrive trans, then the 3.73 to 3.42 swap only results in a 175rpm drop @ 70 mph.

When people talk of changing gears I generally tell them to go at least .50 of a ratio at a jump, otherwise you are wasting your time unless you are just trying to fine tune drag strip finish line rpm....on the street those little jumps like 3.73 to 3.42 or 3.55, or 3.73 to 3.90 are almost unnoticeable.

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Carnut1 » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:24 pm

I have done a 440 bbc in a tahoe with a worked up Holley two barrel tbi with 2.19/1.88 ported rectangular ports and some tricks to the fuel injection. He had issues breaking the 10 bolt with 4.11 gears. So I say no.
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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by gnicholson » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:26 pm

I had a 90 ss454 that was stolen. You have 7.9 to 1 compression right now. That's the first thing I would deal with. If you leave the short block alone you'll have to reduce the combustion chamber volume in the cylinder heads. You could bolt on some hundred cc l-29 heads or the aluminum Edelbrock 100cc heads. If I were doing it I would get rid of the factory fuel injection system and go to a dual-plane and a Quadrajet or if you want to stay with fuel injection a multi-port system from Holley etc. As far as the mileage goes the 91 and later 454 SS trucks had 4 L 80 Overdrive Transmissions. For highway fuel mileage you can't beat getting the cruise RPM down to around 2000 RPM or even less so an overdrive transmission would be the way to go. Failing that I would go with a 308 for the rear. Even with that gear in the rear if you build the engine for low RPM torque and Max power around 5000 RPM and tune it properly it will be much faster that it is right now with the 373

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Casper393W » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:41 pm

When I had my shop.. a guy came in with a 454 SS and he had bought a KenneBell supercharger kit and had me install it.... Buy what a waste...The lower manifold bolted to the Stock TBI intake! When I first took it for a drive.. it had great torque..but hit a wall at about 4700 RPM..

We ran it on the Chassis Dyno nothing like saying my Supercharged 454 laid down 270 rwhp!

Andy

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by B Original » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:43 pm

Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 pm
B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:13 pm
Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 5:52 pm


The guy wants to make less than 1hp/cube.. do you think he really needs to stroke it? That's just a waste of money
?? That's an irrelevant statement. Stroking is increasing the cubes so should be no problem keep it under 1hp for Cube
Maybe instead of your supposition of 1HP/cube you should have used the term inexpensive in your snarky comment lol. That will be hard not to do by accident. Your suggestions will be difficult to limit the engine to less than 1hp/cube. A good fuel efficient BBC is usually 1.1-1.2 go per cube. IF you get less than that you have to sacrifice less than optimal choices to keep the HP#'s low
Does he need to stroke it to make 400hp?
Actually not but it is an alternative if he stroked it to 496 and done nothing but a tune including an ECM Flash I'm sure that would put him over 400 horsepower. But I think Charlie's suggestion it's a good suggestion I think the 454 with an aftermarket intake and aftermarket fuel injection would probably take him over 400 horsepower with nothing else by doing away with a factory TBI fuel management. A cam and Springs would just be icing on the cake. Carnut is usually spot on. I've used both Holley fuel injection and fitech they both work good but if you got a little bit of a cam in it the Holley injection self Tune acclimate two less than desirable vacuum characteristics

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by Headguy » Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:50 pm

B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:43 pm
Headguy wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:20 pm
B Original wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:13 pm

?? That's an irrelevant statement. Stroking is increasing the cubes so should be no problem keep it under 1hp for Cube
Maybe instead of your supposition of 1HP/cube you should have used the term inexpensive in your snarky comment lol. That will be hard not to do by accident. Your suggestions will be difficult to limit the engine to less than 1hp/cube. A good fuel efficient BBC is usually 1.1-1.2 go per cube. IF you get less than that you have to sacrifice less than optimal choices to keep the HP#'s low
Does he need to stroke it to make 400hp?
Actually not but it is an alternative if he stroked it to 496 and done nothing but a tune including an ECM Flash I'm sure that would put him over 400 horsepower. But I think Charlie's suggestion it's a good suggestion I think the 454 with an aftermarket intake and aftermarket fuel injection would probably take him over 400 horsepower with nothing else by doing away with a factory TBI fuel management. A cam and Springs would just be icing on the cake. Carnut is usually spot on. I've used both Holley fuel injection and fitech they both work good but if you got a little bit of a cam in it the Holley injection self Tune acclimate two less than desirable vacuum characteristics
The stock cam is about 190@.050 and .380 lift no need for an aftermarket ecu or throttle body for 400hp

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Re: 454SS 230hp remedy

Post by MTENGINES » Sat Apr 28, 2018 7:32 pm

I have done quite a few. usually ill order the small dome speed pro piston, cam about like what head guy mentioned 220@.050 108lsa. And it will make 375/400HP through the stock TBI and intake, better would be just a performer NON AIRGAP.

walboro 255 and a external pressure regulator with the pressure cranked up. EBL Flash and 2 widebands. plug and play self learning and it has lean cruise. will have a little bit of chop and 15 inches of vacuum.

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