Forged Piston Opinions... - Page 2 - Chevelle Tech
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post #16 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 3:25 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Brian,

Have I missed part of this conversation ?? Unless I missed something you don't even know for certain that you need pistons do you ???

You say this needs to be a budget repair so if something stupid happened like the oil pickup coming off just fix what you need and seal it up good so it wont leak and keep on driving

Bill Koustenis
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post #17 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 3:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Brian,

Have I missed part of this conversation ?? Unless I missed something you don't even know for certain that you need pistons do you ???

You say this needs to be a budget repair so if something stupid happened like the oil pickup coming off jut fix what you need and seal it up good so it wont leak and keep on driving
I would love to do that, Bill, but since I have had nothing but trouble with this engine from day one, I would rather have it gone through by a competent builder to avoid any future issues. If Tom think we can do it with the current pistons, then I might just source a new cam. It is currently a 377 and the cam that Chris Straub is going to provide was going to get me close to 500 HP with the engine becoming a 383. I don't know where it would end up staying at a 377.

One of the biggest issues with it - besides no oil pressure - is the oil leaks everywhere. Tom thinks that I may have a lot of blow by, which could be causing the many leaks. With the engine having around 60,000 miles on it (I really need to find my notes and see how many it actually has), it may require an over bore. Someone has a set of forged pistons available that would meet my needs for the overbore and compression. They utilize the 1mm rings, so I inquired if they would be okay for a daily driver. If he says they will be okay, then I will probably order the pistons.

1971 Malibu, factory buckets/full gauges/console, 377 roller cammed small block, Turbo 400, 3.42 10 bolt posi (Buick), - All your base are belong to us.
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post #18 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 5:23 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by blue_69_malibu View Post
There are a lot of "top notch" builders who use Mahle Pistons and a metric ring pack.

That's what I've got in my 383 from Bruce Parsons in Dayton, OH and that's what Mark Jones uses a lot.

The latter should make the decision for you, IMHO.

In life....but especially in this hobby....you almost always get what you pay for. If a part like a piston is that much cheaper, it's likely b/c it's not made as well or from material that is as good.

I'm a cheap a*s CPA.....but I stopped building on the cheap years ago b/c I got tired of buying things twice and fixing leaks.
Some people don't understand quality for sure I have seen the SRP Pistons the ring lands seem to sloppy compared to the Mahle pistons.

I build a lot of circle track, street and strip and road race engines and Mahle is my first choice at my shops quality is number 1 Good parts cost money.

It would be interesting how the block is being and see if a Jobber shop doing the work because its cheaper then doing right and having it done right. HOPEFULLY THE OP IS NOT CUTTING CORNERS ON BLOCK PREP. I have seen that bite people in the butt more then once but they thought they were saving money LOL

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post #19 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 6:15 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Brian ask Mike Lewis about forged Autotec/Racetec pistons, I bought my 489 forged rotator from him and it came with them along with Total Seal rings, Manley H beams and Scat crank all balanced for a very reasonable price


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post #20 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 7:56 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

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Originally Posted by WakkoWarner View Post
I would love to do that, Bill, but since I have had nothing but trouble with this engine from day one

Other than the leaks what kind of problems have you had ? They could not have been too bad if you have put 60,000 miles on it.



Quote:
Originally Posted by WakkoWarner View Post
It is currently a 377 and the cam that Chris Straub is going to provide was going to get me close to 500 HP with the engine becoming a 383. I don't know where it would end up staying at a 377.


The 6 cubic inch difference will be pretty much irrelevant as far as power and camshaft selection.



Other than the leaks and your current problem were you happy with the way the engine ran for 60,000 miles ? If so I would find out what is wrong with it and if the bores are in good shape freshen it up and drive another 60k The current pistons must not have been too bad if they lasted that long.



Basically I think you are jumping the gun until you find out what is wrong with it. I certainly would not be buying any parts until it is disassembled.



Just my opinion,

Bill Koustenis
Advanced Automotive Machine
Waldorf Md


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post #21 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 8:09 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

I agree with what Bill said and when Tom takes it apart (guessing Tom is doing this) let him see what's wrong and what's really reusable and what needs replaced, keep your wallet happy, mine was an empty block
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post #22 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 8:36 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by shovelrick View Post
I agree with what Bill said and when Tom takes it apart (guessing Tom is doing this) let him see what's wrong and what's really reusable and what needs replaced, keep your wallet happy, mine was an empty block
I am hoping that my block, crank, rods, and heads are still usable. But, the other parts will add up.

1971 Malibu, factory buckets/full gauges/console, 377 roller cammed small block, Turbo 400, 3.42 10 bolt posi (Buick), - All your base are belong to us.
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post #23 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 8:43 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by BillK View Post
Other than the leaks what kind of problems have you had ? They could not have been too bad if you have put 60,000 miles on it.







The 6 cubic inch difference will be pretty much irrelevant as far as power and camshaft selection.



Other than the leaks and your current problem were you happy with the way the engine ran for 60,000 miles ? If so I would find out what is wrong with it and if the bores are in good shape freshen it up and drive another 60k The current pistons must not have been too bad if they lasted that long.



Basically I think you are jumping the gun until you find out what is wrong with it. I certainly would not be buying any parts until it is disassembled.



Just my opinion,
First problem was the day I received it - one straight plug head, one angle plug head. I ended up with two blown head gaskets 6 months out of warranty, but less than 8,000 miles on the engine (crappy Engine Master brand head gaskets), I then ended up with a couple of broken valve springs.

The balancer came apart a couple of years ago (Professional Products unit), and I had to replace the heads about 2 or 3 years ago (Pro Comp heads with the spark plug holes machined too deep - caused half of the spark plug threads to be exposed in the combustion chamber, which resulted in carbon buildup on the threads - that caused pulled threads on 4 of the cylinders). When I pulled the heads, I had two more broken valve springs (the builder assembled bare Pro Comp heads for this engine).

So, this engine has been problematic since I got it.

1971 Malibu, factory buckets/full gauges/console, 377 roller cammed small block, Turbo 400, 3.42 10 bolt posi (Buick), - All your base are belong to us.
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post #24 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 11:36 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Damn, internet goblins ate my reply. Later.

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post #25 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 19, 11:50 PM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by WakkoWarner View Post
First problem was the day I received it - one straight plug head, one angle plug head. I ended up with two blown head gaskets 6 months out of warranty, but less than 8,000 miles on the engine (crappy Engine Master brand head gaskets), I then ended up with a couple of broken valve springs.

The balancer came apart a couple of years ago (Professional Products unit), and I had to replace the heads about 2 or 3 years ago (Pro Comp heads with the spark plug holes machined too deep - caused half of the spark plug threads to be exposed in the combustion chamber, which resulted in carbon buildup on the threads - that caused pulled threads on 4 of the cylinders). When I pulled the heads, I had two more broken valve springs (the builder assembled bare Pro Comp heads for this engine).

So, this engine has been problematic since I got it.
Not to be harsh, but do you realize that all of the parts that have broken on you are "cheap", lesser brand parts?

Did they rack up a lot of miles? Sure. But they broke.
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post #26 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 6:57 AM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by blue_69_malibu View Post
Not to be harsh, but do you realize that all of the parts that have broken on you are "cheap", lesser brand parts?

Did they rack up a lot of miles? Sure. But they broke.
If a guy is dealing with a shop that is using that garbage its time to find another shop that uses quality parts. Build it once right with allllllll quality parts.

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post #27 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 13th, 19, 7:10 AM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by WakkoWarner View Post
Because I won't run cast pistons ever again. Two engines were destroyed by cast pistons breaking. I will only run forged from here on out.

What is the build ?? If you destroyed 2 sets of pistons there maybe something else going on. First thing is to find out what caused all the destruction
was tune up cheaped out on using good fuel if so it does not matter what pistons you use they are going to break.
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post #28 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 1:44 AM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by WakkoWarner View Post
First problem was the day I received it - one straight plug head, one angle plug head. I ended up with two blown head gaskets 6 months out of warranty, but less than 8,000 miles on the engine (crappy Engine Master brand head gaskets), I then ended up with a couple of broken valve springs.

The balancer came apart a couple of years ago (Professional Products unit), and I had to replace the heads about 2 or 3 years ago (Pro Comp heads with the spark plug holes machined too deep - caused half of the spark plug threads to be exposed in the combustion chamber, which resulted in carbon buildup on the threads - that caused pulled threads on 4 of the cylinders). When I pulled the heads, I had two more broken valve springs (the builder assembled bare Pro Comp heads for this engine).

So, this engine has been problematic since I got it.
Seams test fitting, indexing spark plugs and bench fitting could have solved a lot of your problems right from the start. That and as already said the upgrading to better gaskets and balancer from the start. The broken valve springs means the valve train was not happy and the springs where most likely not right for the camshaft. The other thing is what block was used? is it a one piece rear seal block? those are internal balance in front and external in the rear and most times the balancer and fly wheel or flex plate are balanced with the rotating assembly because nothing is ever right off the shelf. This is why good builders blue print the engine and test fit more then once, plus double check the specs and verify every part they are using. Hence why some builds take longer then others, attention to detail. just my 2 cents.

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post #29 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 7:06 AM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

HI Brian

For the street for my 400 it was a choice between Weisco, pro tru street and Mahle power pak . Both 4032 . Both are a huge amount lighter than Hypereutectic pistons . I suspect cheaper cost to balance as less mallory metal needed.

4032 pistons only slightly heavier than drag pistons 3/4 ounce
4032 pistons are approx 3 ounces lighter than Hypereutectic
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post #30 of 69 (permalink) Old Oct 14th, 19, 8:08 AM
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Re: Forged Piston Opinions...

^ had that happen on the last budget 383 I built. KB had the best size dish for my desired compression ratio but were heavy as hell. I replaced them with SRP's before I took everything to balance and ebayed the glass bricks. On all but the very cheapest builds, I'll spend the extra coin to step up to forged.
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