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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I should have posted this in my last message, but I've heard a lot of good things about the Vortech heads. I heard they are better than the World Products and Dart heads and are a fraction of the price. I know I'll have to get new valve covers because it's a centerbolt head, but has anyone used the Vortech heads and is it worth the $?
 

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I believe that you also need a different intake manifold.

Wes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Wes,
Yeah, I will have to get a new intake manifold. I should have put that in there. I'm looking right now at either an Edelbrock or Weiand intake manifold. Any suggestions on thes intakes also would help. Thanks.
 

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Edelbrock and GM make the intake manifold, but neither is cheap (read extremely expensive)?

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Mike
formerly known as gotapileof70Malibu (so add 80 to my number of posts)
'70 Malibu
'70 Malibu convertible
 

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I don't know anyone who is running these heads, but have read many dyno reports about the Vortec heads. They list for $399 a pair assembled, seen ads as low as $379. These heads can be worth up to 75 HP above crappy 70's smogger heads, but not any better than other good aftermarket heads like Trick flow or Edelbrock etc since they only have 1.94 Intakes, stock diamater springs. The benifit is cheap horses with these heads, BTW they also need late model self aligning rockers (no room for guideplates) and special 8 bolt intake manifolds. ( Edelbrock has 3 types, GM sells one also), also the center bolt covers.

Frank

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Would I have to get the Edelbrock Performer RPM w/1996 Gen-1 heads {$175}or would I need just the Performer RPM (non-EGR){$117}? Also, I would love to have Trick Flow(made by Summit) or Edelbrock heads, but I don't have the $1000 to fork out. I shouldn't need to get to the 4000 RPM range because this will be a daily driver. Also who makes centerbolt valve covers besides GM? I've heard Moroso made some, but they're expensive.
 

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I just read an article in Hot Rod where they used vortech heads. They improved the power of the 350cid a decent amount, and instead of buying a special intake they modified the 4 holes on a team G intake to match up with the heads so now it will work on either style. Just something to think about.

Chris
 

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SoCal, to answer your questions:

"Would I have to get the Edelbrock Performer RPM w/1996 Gen-1 heads {$175}or would I need just the Performer RPM (non-EGR){$117}?"
---You need the Gen-1 manifold. You also need the new style intake gaskets. You must purchase these through a dealership and they run around $26 (mine were anyway). We have the RPM Gen-1. There may be another alternative to this as well. The new issue of Hot Rod just came out and they build a bucks-down motor and did some grinding on a Weiand to make it fit okay. The heads can be drilled to accept the old style manifold bolt pattern if you so choose. I'd have to really look at that article though to see what it was they did to that manifold. That'd also save a couple bucks on intake gaskets if you did the redrill job yourself.

"Also, I would love to have Trick Flow(made by Summit) or Edelbrock heads, but I don't have the $1000 to fork out. I shouldn't need to get to the 4000 RPM range because this will be a daily driver."
---Do a search on Vortec. Someone mentioned an article that was written stating the Vortecs outflowed or flowed as good as the above aftermarket heads up to 6500RPM. Right up your alley.

"Also who makes centerbolt valve covers besides GM? I've heard Moroso made some, but they're expensive."
---Summit has chrome ones for $40 or $50. You also need to buy the gaskets for these from the dealer plus the bolts. I bought some junkyard ones for $20 and my brother painted them Chev orange. Very cool looking.

Additions:
---Yeah you need to run the self-aligning rockers (in the HR story they got them for $50) OR, contrary to what 73Malibu says, you can run guideplates. We had them installed. We are using roller tip rockers with them. If you are keeping the RPMs down and are not running more than .450 or so lift cam, then these will suit your purpose very well and be very cheap since you can pretty much run them out of the box without changing springs or doing any machine work. Scoggin Dickey Chevrolet in Lubbock, Texas has them. (www.scoggindickey.com, I believe is the address.) Call some places around you and tell them you can get them for $400 and see what they tell you. I had dealers offer them to me for around $430 or $450. Lots cheaper than $1K.
If you do that search on Vortec there was someone who responded to one of my questions with a very detailed explanation of what it takes to use these heads. I can't think who helped out offhand, but it was great info.
 

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To Gandalf80: they modified the bolt holes to fit the $40 heads that the lucked upon. They used an edelbrock on the vortecs.

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Mike
formerly known as gotapileof70Malibu (so add 80 to my number of posts)
'70 Malibu
'70 Malibu convertible
 
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I saw two news set of these heads today at BillK's place, there is a little bit of a problem if your car has or must maintain the EGR, these heads have no heat passages, no place for the EGR so you need to work that out some how. Also if you redrill them for a standard manifold, be very careful. The center area of the head where two bolts need to go is thin.

Other than that they look nice.


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Wally
Gold #67
67 malibu
 

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Hi guys,
Like Wally said, one of my customers brough in a pair of Vortechs this afternoon. To be real honest, flow or no flow, I would be scared to put them on anything making any kind of serious power. I could not believe how thin the deck area is around the quench side of the head ! Not much more than an eighth inch in some places. That would scare me to death as far as gasket clamping ability, and possible cracks. Also, the area where you have to drill and tap for the intake bolts to use the older intake is only 1/8 inch thick. This would only leave about two threads for the bolts to go into. I know they are cheap, but my choice would be a set of Iron Eagles. They are close to a half inch thick on the decks and just more beef all over. Glad I saw this pair, I was thinking of them for another project but I think I will pass. I guess only time will tell as to how they hold up. I would say get one and look at it before buying.

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Bill Koustenis
Advanced Automotive Machine
Waldorf Md

1971 Heavy Chevy - original owner
Team Chevelle #100
 

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Very interesting comments about those vortec heads, I have been tempted to run some since they are so cheap. I have been reading the new Hot rod article and have been real tempted. But dyno tests are not the same as someone actually using the heads on their car. I had read that guideplates wouldn't fit but that sounded strange to me. Would the lack of heat riser really be a problem for a street engine. The center pair of intake bolts around the heat risers are not present. From what Bill K says, I wouldnt try to cheap out and re drill the intake bolts. Hot rods trick with the Weiland was for the 87 up heads not the Gen 1/Vortec

Is anyone actually using these heads??

Frank

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Here is a thread from a few weeks ago. Lots of discussion about the Vortecs. www.chevelles.com/forum/Forum4/HTML/000755.html

Hope this helps.

TH, Sad to say I just saw, in the new Jegs catalog, that Comp Cams now has self-aligning roller tips rockers
. Not cheap $212 for 1.5, $188 for 1.6.

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Pat Kelley
66 & 67 El Caminos

[This message has been edited by Pat Kelley (edited 07-08-99).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Pat and everyone that replied. I think it was you Pat that had the reply comparing prices under different situations. It makes you think. Also Bill, where could I find the Iron Eagles and how much do those go for money wise?
 

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I just read Pat's cost analysis, sounds somewhat grim for the "Cheap" Vortec's. I have spotted a one or two intact centerbolt covers in the boneyard, there will be self aligning rockers underneath. Used rockers may be cheaping out
. Centerbolt setups should be more available in the future as the 87 up models get junked. Also if you have not bought a new intake, the Edelbrock units are about $50 over the standard units. Oh Well
Frank
 

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Pat, are f***in' kiddin'? That figures. That just figures.
You know, I initiall heard these were the bargain of the century and I still believe they are for the right application, which is what SoCal has outlined. If you want a good street or street/strip motor that isn't gonna go too wild I think these are a great alternative. I will have to let you all know how they work out on our 350. MAN I wanna get it running!
 

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I would also get a new intake but, in HotRod they hogged out the holes in the intake (4 around the exhaust crossover) and used washers. Kinda clunky and they didn't recommend it.
 

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That was for a different set of heads! see the above comments about the same mistake

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Mike
formerly known as gotapileof70Malibu (so add 80 to my number of posts)
'70 Malibu
'70 Malibu convertible
 

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TH, I will be glad to hear how those heads work out on your 350. Pat and Bill K do have some valid points, the vortecs are probably not good for mega hp/racing with 0.500 lift or higher but I wouldn't mind a 375 - 400 HP 350 for cheap money.

Frank

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