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 Post subject: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 03, 2010 3:05 am 
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Location: Charlotte, NC
I found a set of Vortec heads on Craigslist.org local to me but want to get some opinions on these first... Here is the link to the ad first: http://charlotte.craigslist.org/pts/1579716730.html
Here is the email the guy sent me when I asked him about them:
These are 1996 heads casting #906 wich were the best flowing out of all the Vortec years coming stock cast 170 cc intake runners. I can always port them for you a little more if needed.The ones in Summit can be any year but come with pressed in studs no guide plates and very weak stock springs.I bought these heads out of Craigslist 6 -7 months ago for $300.00 and they were used just pulled off a motor oily and gasket still stuck on them.I did not trust them so I took them to Carolina Crank and had them checked out. They were good no cracks,pressure checked, etc. But valves were beat and in need of valve job.I built them up for my 383 i was building. Brand NEW stanless steel valves for nitrous, NEW 3 angle valve job,had the heads drilled and tapped for screw in studs, NEW 3/8 screw in studs and pushrod guide plates installed,face head machined flat. Upgraded the valve springs to a heavier Comp Cams spring but stayed in O.E.M. valve o.d. spring pocket as to not spend more money machining head they are 1.255 o.d. but can handle a .550 lift on a flatt tapet cam(stock hyd) non -roller they had a 125lb seat psi. and a 260 open psi. all brand new with new retainers and 7degree locks and teflon valve seals. Cost me another 350 to get them back, they are still in the bag from machine shop, never used or bolted on. I later on bit the bullet and bought Dart aluminum heads new for $1500 so I need the money back that I spent on these Vortec iron heads. These are bolt on 35-40 HP over any other GM factory casting and allyou need is a set of roller rockers from summit the cheapest set is 150 procomp.

Anyways, that is the email I got from the guy on what the heads have done to them. I was thinking about offering him $450 but not sure, I do not know much about these kinds of things so looking for opinions.
I have a basic 455 lift hyd cam, I believe its a Comp or Crane. It's a low engine torque milage cam that I plan to use on my 355 build for this 80 El Camino of mine. Would this cam also work on these heads if I went with them? I am guessing so since he said they will handle .550 lift on a flat tappet but I want to make sure he isn't feeding me some BS.

Thanks for any information, opinions or suggestions! Right now I have some '72 3250 stock heads but would rather run Vortec. I just do not have $700 for new Vortec's from Summit right now...


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:56 am 
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906's are better than 062's but either way you will still need a vortec specific intake manifold.

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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Wed Feb 03, 2010 8:45 pm 
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Location: Charlotte, NC
I am debating on getting them or not but like you said, then I need an intake manifold which I am sure will be $300 unless I can find a used Edelbrock Performer one for fairly cheap and used.
How about the '72 3256 heads? Anyone know if these are half way decent? I can always do a head and intake swap later down the road and right now just focus on getting this 355 put into the car and driving.


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Thu Feb 04, 2010 12:32 am 
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Location: Palm Beach, FL
i have the intake 175 and its yours


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:59 am 
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Location: Bryan,Ohio
I have a brand new summit vortec intake i would sell for 140.00 shipped to you......let me know if you are interested .........

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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:31 am 
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Location: Charlotte, NC
Do you guys have the part numbers on these intakes so I can look at them online? I just might be interested.
Thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:46 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 7:34 pm
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Location: Charlotte, NC
I think I am going to just skip the Vortec head option right now and get this motor together with what I have. Now here is another question... I have an option to buy these 72 3250 heads for about $200 with valves, springs, etc all they will need are rockers or I can buy new 290HP crate motor heads complete with stock style self centered rockers (non roller), complete, pushrods, etc. The 1972 heads are machined and checked with good parts and the 290HP crate heads came off a friends motor with only break in time on the new motor and that's it. He changed them for aftermarket Dart heads.
Opinions on which is better would be greatly appreciated! I plan to run a 450 lift type cam I think and the 290HP heads with no mods should be fine.


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 1:08 am 
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I was going to say anymore you can find a carbed Vortec intake almost as easily as a traditional SBC intake, but these guys already proved that :lol:

The Vortecs would definitely be a better out of the box solution for not a lot of head work for a fairly mild setup, they'll make a good deal more oomph than a lot of older heads will. How big of a cam do you plan on running? You should be good up to .480" easily, mine looks like it'll actually take a little more, I'd dare to say close to .490" but that'd probably be pushin' it. Run a GM hot cam (218º/228º, .525" w/ 1.6 rockers, 112º LSA) with them and you're at 400hp with bone stock heads (aside from work for valve springs).

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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 8:20 am 
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I'm runnin' the Hot cam on my vortecs but with 1.5 rockers for .492 lift. It's designed for use with 1.6's so the ramps are probably a little lazy in my case but it pulls 18" of vacuum and puts me in the very high 11's with low stress on the valvetrain. Someday when I grow up I'll get a real race cam in there but I used to drive it on the street and had to pass emissions so went with the Hottie.

_________________
It may not be quite as ugly, but it's still SLOW!
"there's only two things in the world that smell like fish...and one of 'em's fish"

Best ET-7.49 (1/8mi)
Best mph-93 (1/8mi)
Best 60'-1.53
MILD 389sbc pullin' 17" of vacuum.


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:19 pm 
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Location: Charlotte, NC
Yeah the Hot Cam would be nice but like I said I just cannot afford all that on this car right now. Any idea on the 290HP heads though compared to the '72 3250 heads? I may just run the 290HP heads with the stock push rods, 450 lift cam, self aligned non roller rocker arms and just let it go. Later I can always upgrade to the nice Vortec heads with some porting work done on them and a nice roller cam but for now I just need to get this thing on the road!
Thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 10:14 pm 
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Unless you can get Vortec's CHEAP, the mods required to make them survive with bigger valve lift, a different intake, valve covers, etc. really add up, dollar-wise, to the point that considering aftermarket heads is a viable choice.
Here's a nice comparison Vortech to aftermarket:
http://www.2quicknovas.com/vortecheads.html

I've toyed with Vortec's for a LONG time but their purchase, upgrading to a stainless valve package, adequate valve springs and refreshing a set of used heads makes these a logical option.
The Patriot "vortec" 185's outflow Vortec's on EVERY level and still retain the Vortec's chamber and awesome port velocity you want on the street.
They come with all the goodies (stainless valves, plenty of lift clearance, great springs, retainers, etc.) in a lot heavier duty casting as well.
They're $695 delivered on Ebay every day.
See flow charts below comparing stock Vortec's to them.
Here is a link to Patriot's site for info on them:
https://www.patriot-performance.com/xca ... =76&page=1

The 906's are not a better flowing "version" of the Vortec.
The 906's actually incorporate an added casting below the exhaust seat (heavy truck application?) that needs to be addressed to bring it up to 062 spec.

I'm sure a lot of you remember when the Vortec's were $250 a piece complete.
Those days are LONG gone.
They've gone up a LOT ($300/ea.+). :(

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Last edited by WhiteBu on Sat Feb 06, 2010 7:05 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 11:57 pm 
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cutlass389 wrote:
I'm runnin' the Hot cam on my vortecs but with 1.5 rockers for .492 lift. It's designed for use with 1.6's so the ramps are probably a little lazy in my case but it pulls 18" of vacuum and puts me in the very high 11's with low stress on the valvetrain. Someday when I grow up I'll get a real race cam in there but I used to drive it on the street and had to pass emissions so went with the Hottie.

Could you elaborate some on what you did with the heads? I'm thinking of trying a Hot Cam sometime and I wasn't sure if I could squeeze by with the stock springs and 1.5 rockers or not.

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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 6:59 am 
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Every tech article I've ever read said .450/460" MAX lift with a Vortec because of guide-to-retainer clearance.
That being said, you're going to have to machine the guides down both in height (for more lift) and diameter (to accomodate standard valve springs due to the WIDE guides on Vortecs).

Machining the guides isn't hard at all.
Comp Cams sells a tool.

A friend of mine here in town had a HOT cam with Vortecs years ago in a '79 'Bu.
THAT was a beast. Ran low-11's with a big hit of spray on a 305 Vortec motor out of a truck!
It was always fun to pull out the mirror and show everyone the "5.0" on the back of the block after a pass at the track or at the local burger joint. ;)


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 9:30 am 
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I've read stock lift numbers any where from .450-.480 depending on the source and their tolerance for minimum clearance. In my case I simply replaced the stock springs and retainers with Comp 915 beehives. They are pricey but drop right in with no mods. They offer better control(105 on the seat vs 80 stock) but aren't too strong as to pull the studs like the 918's might. Because of the retainer design, .530 lift is doable with the stock guide according to Comp tech folks. I've been tempted to get some 1.6 rockers but for the cost(2-300 for self aligning) I might as well just get a new cam since they probably wouldn't be that much of a performance gain.

_________________
It may not be quite as ugly, but it's still SLOW!
"there's only two things in the world that smell like fish...and one of 'em's fish"

Best ET-7.49 (1/8mi)
Best mph-93 (1/8mi)
Best 60'-1.53
MILD 389sbc pullin' 17" of vacuum.


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 Post subject: Re: #906 Vortec Heads
 Post Posted: Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:10 am 
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cutlass389 wrote:
I've read stock lift numbers any where from .450-.480 depending on the source and their tolerance for minimum clearance. In my case I simply replaced the stock springs and retainers with Comp 915 beehives. They are pricey but drop right in with no mods. They offer better control(105 on the seat vs 80 stock) but aren't too strong as to pull the studs like the 918's might. Because of the retainer design, .530 lift is doable with the stock guide according to Comp tech folks. I've been tempted to get some 1.6 rockers but for the cost(2-300 for self aligning) I might as well just get a new cam since they probably wouldn't be that much of a performance gain.


I saw those beehives.
They are expensive but worth every penny if their retainers allow THAT much more lift without guide machining!
You still have the press in studs!? Mercy! :shock:

I'm with you......I don't believe the little amount of performance the pricey 1.6's will give justify the expense.
That amount of cash could be better spend elsewhere and net more improvement for sure.


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