THE AGONY AND THE ECSTASY
SWAPPING OUT A 383 STROKER FOR A 454
BALLBUSTER IN A 1973 ROADSTER
The heading for my project is very apt (not like a Google Appt – it fits well with what is buzzing around in my head as I decide things relating to my project).
I purchased my 1973 C3 Roadster a little over a year ago now. When I went looking, my preference was for a big block 454 or 427. After a two year search and a final two week dedicated search in Queensland, I settled on what I considered to be the best compromise, a Joe Sherman 383 stroker engine (with 100miles only on the clock), in a very clean and original roadster. As things happen, a miracle by some accounts, one of the pistons in the engine gave out after only 9,000 miles (I actually drive my Corvette, a lot!!). This was the start of the agony.
You may think that the agony related to removing, repairing and replacing the beautiful 383, sadly you would be wrong. The agony related to whether or not to replace the 383 with a nicely worked and setup 454 my buddy Joe had laying around in his workshop, it was for sale, but I had just bought a nicely setup 427 he had laying around in his workshop intended for use in my “Project Car” yet to be found. Trust me, that was the agony.
The ecstasy came once I had made a firm decision to go 454! Of course, some more agony crept in when ordering all the new parts to shoehorn the 454 into the engine bay including a new side exhaust setup, new hood etc.: However, the ecstasy far outweighs the agony. Today, a mountain of spares as well as a specially built torque converter from Hughes Performance, is clearing customs as I write this. Matt Alexander has been contracted to allow my 454 to be run in on his engine test stand and this should take place within the next few days. Part of the ecstasy involves the learning curve, did you guys know that, unlike a diesel engine, these petrol jobbies actually have spark plugs!! Amazing!!
The project is ongoing, and more agony and ecstasy will be shared with you, if I survive the process. Adios (for now) Amigos!!
Matt A – Engine Rebuild & Engine Stand Project
Here’s a little project I’ve been working for the past month in my very small amount of spare times.
Fabricated an engine test stand, it’s not finished yet still needs some gauges and wiring.
The engine test stand is finally finished, Saas gauges fitted, all wired up and ready to go.
Mocked it up with an old block I had in the shed.
All I need now is to build that engine…happening soon.
It has been a long journey to get to here and I have had two projects successfully come to fruition today. First up successful first run of my new engine built here in my garage, second running that engine successfully on the engine test stand I built here also.
Very happy and keen to get it installed.
Picked my next project today 1969 with lots of options and has not been molested
The fun begins again
The fun begins
4 hours of stripping with a heat gun and peeling of the paint
No surprises yet
Had a good afternoon, Floody and I looked at how to put on the straps and lift the body off.
Next thing we knew the body was off and sitting on the Dolly.
Already to clean up and get rid of surface rust
Wish I had a sandblaster for the small parts
Frame is back from sandblasting
Now the fun part PAINTING
That job is done
Move onto the next one
I have alot of parts to Sandblast for the 69
Went to Bunnings and bought a $59 Sandblaster
Made up a cardboard booth complete with perspex folding window, LED lighting and an exhaust fan
Makes it easy to get big and small parts inside and recycle the garnet
Going to compete with China, patent pending
Finally after 3 months have a completed rolling chassis.
Every nut bolt cleaned and painted, diff reconditioned, motor rebuilt, trailing arms, power steering, all new suspension bushes and bearings.
Thanks Ron and Greg for your help.
Next on to the body