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I think I have convinced myself to go to a roller cam, lifters and rockers in my 454 BB for my 67. I have done several cam swaps in both small blocks and big blocks, but never a roller cam. Not knowing much about this technology except friction reduction being the obvious gain, what do you guy's think? Are roller cams worthwhile? What kind of difficulty can I expect and how does the job differ from swapping a basic hydraulic cam. I respect all of your replies. Thanks in advance. Bill K, you out there?
 

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Bill,
Wally and I have been tossing around this very subject. Both of us want to put a real roller, not hydraulic, in motors we are building for the street. The biggest problem we have found is that the solid rollers require a LOT of spring pressure. This means a LOT of wear in the valve train and a lot of maintainence. Valve seats get pounded out sooner, roller rockers wear more, valve springs have to be changed periodically etc etc. Most racers get around 200 passes on springs and then they go in the trash, thats only 50 miles of driving !!! I still have not been able to get a straight answer from the cam guys as to why they cannot grind a mild street roller in such a way to use a more reasonable spring pressure. I am going to the PRI (Performance Racing Industry) show in November and I have it on my list of things to ask the manufacturers !
I guess it really depends on how much driving you are planning to do. We have one customer with a huge roller in a 440 Mopar Street motor and it has been together for over 6 years ! But.... he probably does not put 300 miles a year on the car ! Goes to a couple of local cruises, a couple of local car shows and trailers it any where further than 30 miles.
If you plan on driving it, then for now I would stick to a hydraulic roller. They have improved immensly and will do almost the same thing with out the big springs.
I will let you know what I find out at PRI
Hope this helps,

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Bill Koustenis
Advanced Automotive Machine
Waldorf Md

1971 Heavy Chevy - original owner
Team Chevelle #100
 

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What about using a "rev kit." Wouldn't that relieve the pressure on the push rod and rockers, allowing lower spring pressures to be used.

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Pat Kelley
66 El Camino, daily driver
67 El Camino, STRIP/street
 
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