396 2bbl ? [Archive] - Chevelle Tech

: 396 2bbl ?

Feb 1st, 04, 12:41 AM
I have just recieved my title history search and contacted the first owner of my 69 SS. He tells me that it was a 396 w/ a 3-speed stick. BUT the 396 had a 2bbl carburator on it. My car was a late builder- 1st week of July at Kansas City. Could this be a case of running low on parts and slaping on a 2bbl comming down the line? I know that there were 2bbl 396's in Impalas and trucks rated at 265 bhp. Has any one seen a setup like this? I do believe it is a real SS, because of the frame braces and the large fuel line. The black tail panel paint does not show any blue under it so I don't believe it was painted over with black at a later time. Any sugestions of why or anything of the sort is welcomed, I'm stumped! :confused:

Feb 1st, 04, 1:37 AM

Folks around here report that there indeed were 2bbl 396s placed in Impalas, but I can't believe an SS396 would ever leave the factory as anything else but SS396 spec'ed.

Sounds like a job for the Tag Team forum to see what you've really got.

Feb 1st, 04, 8:24 AM
No SS 396 ever came with a 2-bbl carb. Either the guy has no idea what he is taking about, bs'ing you and he swapped the manifold to save gas, has another engine in the car or the car is really not an SS 396.

Best way to tell what you have is to get the engine codes stamped into the boss of the block that protrudes from the right pass head. You will have to remove alternator and clean aways paint and grime. When you do this, look closely before you do to see if this area has been painted up before or if it appears original. If it has been painted up, that a good clue someone had been fooling with things.

Bill Pritchard
Feb 1st, 04, 12:53 PM
I'm old enough to know that peoples minds tend to get a bit foggy about certain things over time. I suspect that's the case with your car's original owner. Very highly unlikely that it originally came with a 2 barrel carb.

Feb 1st, 04, 2:58 PM
Maybe it was "speshul ordered" that way. Shoot according to all the experts that roam around cruises and car shows (usually without a car), you could "speshul order" about anything back then. Even them 425 hemis with 3-4 barrels in a '69 COPO SS 2 dr wagon. ;)

Feb 1st, 04, 4:31 PM
So you seen my new car huh Von :D

Feb 1st, 04, 11:35 PM
The Impala was available from 65 to 69 with a 265hp 396 2 barrel, I had a 69 4 door Impala equipped as such. The shortblock was the same as the 325/350hp 396 only difference was the cylinder heads, cam , and intake. This combination was never installed in any other GM platform.

Feb 2nd, 04, 12:15 AM
I guess he is just foggy because I dont doubt it being a SS. He described most everything else on the car to the "T". It did take him a bit to recollect though. I have always figured it was just a L-35 with a 3spd stick. As for the block is not orig. it is out of a 68 Impala 325 hp automatic, so I can't go that route. I thought it was kinda crazy my self. Just wanted to get some input. Thanks!

Steve S
Feb 2nd, 04, 3:08 PM
I would bet that it was more than just the block out of the Impala. Sounds like the complete engine was transplanted.

Feb 2nd, 04, 7:00 PM

A bit of a correction. I can only speak about the '65 and '66 Impalas. In '65 two 396's were available, the 325 and 425 HP engines - both with 4 bbl's. In 66 there was but one 396 offered because of the newly introduced 427. The sole 396 in 66 was the carry over '65 325 HP engine with a 4 bbl. No 265/2 bbl 396's in '65 or '66.


mr 4 speed
Feb 3rd, 04, 10:56 AM
Option code for the 325 HP/396 2 bbl was L66 and was available in GM full size cars in 69 only..I had a 69 Caprice with this motor

Bill Pritchard
Feb 3rd, 04, 11:11 AM
Originally posted by mr 4 speed:
Option code for the 325 HP/396 2 bbl was L66 Uh, Chris, don't you mean 265hp/396 2 bbl? tongue.gif

Feb 3rd, 04, 9:57 PM
The car has god knows how many miles on it. I am the 11th owner. Im sure the original engine was core exchanged at a rebuild shop at some point in time. You have to remember these cars were once daily driven in mass numbers and when it come to a new motor not everyone could afford to run to the race engine shop and have a custom high horse engine built. They went to the local engine shop and just used the orig. block for a core. I daily drive this car, I'm not after a showroom restoration, I was just interested in the history of this car. The value or anything else means nothing to me becasue this car is never leaving me. I am going to build it the way I want and just have fun which is what these cars were built for FUN. Thanks for everyones input! :D

Feb 4th, 04, 11:15 AM
Thanks for the correction my bad. graemlins/clonk.gif

mr 4 speed
Feb 4th, 04, 11:44 AM
..ooops..thanks Bill graemlins/clonk.gif

Feb 4th, 04, 11:21 PM
If you still have the original engine with the 2bbl intake, check the casting date on the intake to see if it matches the build date on your Chevelle. If they match, chances are your's was a 2bbl muscle car.
just a thought

Feb 5th, 04, 8:47 PM
Nope sure don't. Would be something special though huh. But I imagine the man was just mistaken.