Thursday, June 25, 2009

Today I began screwing the mill together

Mill, it's an old school word for engine.

Today, I began step one of building the engine for this thing. I picked up the block from the machine shop.

Typical of me, I am doing it with a twist. See, back in the day, one of the finest engines the General (Motors) ever screwed together was a 327. It was the little engine that could. They built the last 327 in 1968 though. What I have here is a 1977 model 350 engine. What I am going to do is install a different crankshaft into this 350 block to arrive at a 327 size. I did a lot of digging around and figured out that GM continued to use the 327 crankshaft in later engines, the lowly 307. So, I found a 307 crankshaft which I will install in my 350 block (basically the same as a 327 block) and presto, Bob's your uncle, we have given birth to a 327.

First step first though, just like a house, a solid engine is built on a solid foundation. So, I took my block to the machine shop and had them dip it into the cleaning vat to get it clean and then bore the cylinders oversize. The cylinders get worn on a high mileage engine, so the fix is to machine the holes bigger and install slightly larger pistons, in this case 30 thousandths bigger.

Notice the big holes in the block. They have a freshly machined surface where the machinist bored them 30 thousandths oversize to remove any wear marks.

This block is what's known as a 4 bolt main block. That means that the caps that hold the crankshaft into the block are secured with 4 bolts each rather than the normal two. This keeps things where they belong when the engine is under a lot of strain or stress. My block came out of a heavy duty truck originally, which is why it came from the factory with the upgraded 4 bolt mains.

Notice each bearing cap has 4 bolts in it...that's the good stuff !

Next time, I show the crankshaft and it's details.

This part of the project (building the engine) is always interesting to me. I am good at building engines and thoroughly enjoy the process. And, pardon my French, but this little bitch is gonna have some real balls when I get it built. The great Smokey Yunick once said "Hell hath no fury like a 327 Chevy".

au revoir et salut (Look it up, it's French)

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