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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Since this is a 1970 vehicle the replacement engine must have been manufactured in 1971? I thought that the 396 was discontinued in the fall of 1969 for the 1970 vehicles ?
 

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Tonowanda engine numbering started at 50000, so your block is the 15038th CE block produced at Tonowanda in 1971. The Flint engine plant used numbers below 50000, according to a 1969 Dealer bulletin.

Only the production L78 was discontinued during the 1970 model year, the lower horsepower 396s (actually 402) were still being built. The 4-bolt blocks were still being made for years after that for service replacement purposes and over the counter sales. I have a 1976 Chevrolet Power book listing part numbers for HD 396 fitted blocks. Chevy also made service replacement small journal 327 blocks well into the 70s. I have one of those.
 

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You found the casting number so look on the opposite side for the casting date. Haven't we talked about this car before? So what is the casting date? So when the engine was replaced did they put the original heads onto the replacement engine? What is the casting numbers and dates on the heads?
 

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the CE engine would be the correct replacement properly outfitted with L-78 parts, the L-89 parts are the cylinder heads!
 

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That is why I'm asking what the casting number and dates are on the heads. I am wondering if they would have replaced just the short block and reused the original heads. I don't imagine they had too many CE engines with aluminum heads sitting on the shelf.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The engine stamped date is L 8 70 if that makes sense
Yes we talked about this before as there some doubting Thomas's about the authenticity of this vehicle
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You will need to go back and look at some older posts to see who these people were
Check out what is it worth may have scroll thru some pages to find them ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Having the heads rebuilt at this time as well as water pump harmonic balancer and intake blasted to look like new. Hopefully will be done next week and I can get this rare beast put back together
 

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If you can't tell me who Thomas is that is fine. I don't think I will be looking through old posts to find out who he is, I could care less. You are right , that would be a rare car if the original engine was still in it. Too bad but a big block El Camino is still fun.
 
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