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Old 01-28-2001, 03:35 PM   #1
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Best cam for vortec heads

What kind of cam should i run with my vortec heads on a 350? It currently has a roller so i presume that would be the best way to go.
I have heard that you cant go with any more than .5" lift, is this true?

If this is the case, how does the cam out of the 350 HO ?
I want good power but would like to keep the drivability.

thanks, Jon

------------------
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Old 01-28-2001, 10:55 PM   #2
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I have fast burn heads and Im useing the LT4 Hot cam kit.But before you can chose the cam thats right for you you need to let use know what other mods you have. headers ,cat back, What type of intake,carb,TBI,TPI do you have the vortec heads with the performance upgrade the stoch springs only take up to .450 max lift with the up grade I think they can take up to .525 max lift are you going to use a roller cam or hydrolic?
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Old 01-29-2001, 12:00 AM   #3
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I have the stock setup heads.....no problems yet. hydraulic flat tappet

------------------
91 RS W/carbed 350, Vortec heads, performer rpm, Comp cams Xtreme energy 226/230 duration and .477/.480 lift. BFG Drag radials. 3.42 posi,Corvette servoed 700r4, ****ty stock converter. Edelbrock TES, 3inch cat, flowmaster with single 2.5 inch exit.
13.24@104
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Old 01-29-2001, 07:23 AM   #4
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Im in the process of building and this is what i plan:

350 Vortec GM Crate Engine (Stock Heads im sure)
Edelbrock Performer RPM intake manifold
Holley 650 Vaccum Secondaries Carb
1 5/8" Hooker or Headmen Headers
3" High Flow Cat
3" Cat Back
Id also imagine i'll be swapping out the torque converter on my 700R4 or i may swap to a 5 speed

I would like to run a roller cam

Jon
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Old 01-29-2001, 03:07 PM   #5
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I would think that the HOT cam with either 1.5 or 1.6 rockers would be ok. But you gotta:

Get screw-in studs installed
Put the HOT cam kit valve springs in
Check to see if valve locks hit valve seal area at max lift...
Possible machine down oil seal/valve guid area...(see below)

Anyone know how much lift out-of-the-box Vortec's can take before oil seal interference????? I would LOVE that info and have heard they can only take like .480-490""!!!! Machine shop can fix that pretty cheaply, though...
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Old 01-29-2001, 03:28 PM   #6
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I have just done an engine similar to what you are building. If you have the pre '86 350 you cannot use the LT4 hot cam. You would have to get aftermarket roller rockers made for pre '86 blocks $$$. I went with the Edelbrock Performer package with the intake (2116), cam (2102) and carb (1406). I have very good streetability and the car appears to be very quick, but I haven't gone to the track to test it yet. I am quite happy with this set-up.

------------------
1986 IROC
New Crate 350 w/Vortec Heads, Edelbrock 2116 Vortec Manifold, Edelbrock Performer 2102 Cam, Edelbrock 1406 carb, Hedman shorty headers, Flowmaster Catback, Rebuilt 700r4 w/vette servo, etc..
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Old 01-29-2001, 03:39 PM   #7
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The block is a one peace rear main which is the 87 and up. It already has a roller cam as far as i know.

I dont want to get into any machining work right now so i think i might go with something like the cam that came in the 350 HO
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Old 01-29-2001, 04:13 PM   #8
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just look at my sig......that is the biggest cam that HOT ROD magazine got to work properly with stock rocker arms on out of the box vortecs

------------------
91 RS W/carbed 350, Vortec heads, performer rpm, Comp cams Xtreme energy 226/230 duration and .477/.480 lift. BFG Drag radials. 3.42 posi,Corvette servoed 700r4, ****ty stock converter. Edelbrock TES, 3inch cat, flowmaster with single 2.5 inch exit.
13.24@104
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Old 01-29-2001, 06:11 PM   #9
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Farmkid, what do you have in it now. Is it a tpi or tbi? You might consider keeping it fuel injected. I'm going to use the same engine with the rpm air gap manifold and 454tbi tb, headman headers and 3" catback with no cat. The stock cam as I understand is a decent cam, I am trying to get the specs on it now. I'll post them when I get them.
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Old 01-29-2001, 06:49 PM   #10
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steve,

Im not sure what the stock cam is thats in it now, but this is the vortec truck replacement engine i believe, not the 350 HO. It is currently tbi but im planning on ditching this for a carb.

What is all involved in the 454 tbi unit swap? I dont want to have to fool around with chips and stuff right now so i feel carb is the best way to get the horsepower out of this engine. Its not a daily driver either, just a play toy.
Maybe you have some good ideas, i would love to hear them if you do.

Thanks for the response
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Old 01-30-2001, 11:59 AM   #11
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Vortec, that COMP XE cam (XE268) should be 224/230 at .050", not the 226/230 that you have in your specs... This IS a great cam!!!

Hot cam is 218/228 at .050" with .492"/.492" lift with 1.5 rockers OR .525"/.525" lift with 1.6 rockers... NICE ROLLER CAM for the price...

Either cam will work well with a carb and you are right that either cam will need tons of work if you plan on keeping EFI, but it can be done and can work well, if you have time and money.

Slap on a RPM Air gap manifold and the Hot Cam kit, have the heads machined for studs and use the 1.6 SA roller rockers in the Hot cam kit along with the kit's valve springs/caps/keepers/locks... NICE setup. May have to machine heads for valve cap to valve guide seal interference, too, but pretty cheap. Use good 650-750 cfm carb and good HEI curve with performance module and matched coil.

That oughtta get you 350-400hp pretty easily!!!


[This message has been edited by FastBroker (edited January 30, 2001).]
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Old 01-30-2001, 12:52 PM   #12
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sorry if I F*cked up the specs, but just the same this cam made 390hp @ 5900RPM with a victor Jr and a demon 750 in HOT ROD. My times in the sig are shifting at 5000rpm. I would have used the LT4 HOT cam if the machining didnt need to be done, I guess its up to farmkid which way he feels like taking this.
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Old 01-30-2001, 05:24 PM   #13
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Thanks for the responses guys. I dont really want to get into too much machining work now, around here theres not too many good machine shops. I am also on a budget.

I think i should run a roller cam since thats what i already have and from what i understand they are superior.

How does this cam sound?
235/235 @ 0.50" with .480"/.480" lift.
Its the ZZ cam or ZZ2 cam used with the 350 HO so i presume no machining work would be required?
What would be the best intake to run with this, would the performer RPM be a good choice?

Thanks for ansewering all my questions, i seem to have lots

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Old 01-30-2001, 07:01 PM   #14
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thats a pretty rowdy cam...lemme tell you. performer RPM is fine, go with the victor Jr. and a 750 for sure though if you dont mind hood clearance probs.
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Old 01-30-2001, 07:35 PM   #15
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Don't forget that if you go to a carb you'll have to replace the distributor with one that is non computer controlled and has a vacum advance. Not a problem just another 160bucs.
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Old 01-30-2001, 08:05 PM   #16
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Ya, i already got that covered
thanks anyways

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Old 01-31-2001, 02:47 PM   #17
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i say go with the zz-4 cam it is good for about 385 hp with the zz-4 or l98 short block. The thing that will make your head swim is the torque that this combo will create some where on the order of 440 ftlbs. the xe 268 can't even come close to that. Acording to desk top dyno it should be good for 389 hp and 478 ftlbs but that torque is with the tpi. so i figure it might be less with a carb. i know that the torque would still be very high.

------------------
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mods
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Old 01-31-2001, 03:45 PM   #18
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I would go with that cam, but the heads dont allow enough lift, and im not into machining right now. Jim Pace says you can go with the zz cam which is .480" lift, i hear thats about all you can do stock

thanks for the input anyways
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Old 01-31-2001, 06:29 PM   #19
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The ZZ cam hits .510 on the exhaust and may pose a problem.

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Old 02-01-2001, 01:46 PM   #20
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Yep on the ZZ cam exhausst lift..

The HOT cam lift is .492"/.492" with 1.5 rockers, which are fine lift numbers for the Vortec heads out of the box. Duration is less than the XE268 Comp Cam but the lift/ramps of the roller HOT cam make up for thi difference and therefore make similar power with a lesser duration cam, ie HOT cam is lesser duration at .050" than XE268...

(218/228 deg vs 224/230 deg at .050")

That's why I like the HOT cam better. But the XE268 cam is AWESOME for a non-roller.
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Old 02-09-2001, 07:52 AM   #21
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I'm running a Comps Cam XE 218/224 @.050, lift of .462/.469 cam in my Vortec headed engine and am happy w/ it.

I thought of running the .477/.480 cam but I didn't quite want to push the lift that high w/ the stock heads. No one was very clear exactly where the limits were at that time, so I played it safe. The limit was just somewhere around .480 for lift putting the larger cam right on the limit. Several people are running that cam now though, so it would appear safe at least in the short run. Premature spring failure could crop up I suppose, hopefully not.

Something in this range only in a roller should work great I would think.

I'm packing a Performer RPM, Holley 750 for intake, and TES headers w/ a Hooker cat-back for exhuast on mine BTW.

------------------
Ray87Z
-Vortec headed 350.
86 IROC w/ a cammed 305 TPI.
Formerly Ray86IROC.
www.inter-scape.com/Ray


[This message has been edited by Ray87Z (edited February 09, 2001).]
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Old 02-14-2001, 03:29 AM   #22
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With the Comp Cams P/N 12-242-2.
The 330hp 350HO vortec engine produced 50 more hp and 25 more ft-lbs. The cam is only $100 but you need the springs and machine work to the heads but still. Oh yeah, the engine was dynoed with an RPM air gap and a 650 cfm demon street carb. Not too bad :-)
This is what I plan on doing this spring break.

------------------
, Jon (91 RS too many mods to list), getting new engine in summer
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Old 02-14-2001, 02:35 PM   #23
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New lifters, too...
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Old 02-14-2001, 03:53 PM   #24
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Did you all see the April 2001 HP Chevy? Budget 355 with Vortec heads, Vortec Performer RPM, Extreme Energy 268 cam, Demon 650 carb, 8.75 CR for 87 octane gas and it made 390hp at 6000 rpm and 426ft/lbs torque at 4000 rpm.

Very interesting article.

EDIT: Typo
------------------
88 IROC convertible
-=ICON Motorsports=-

[This message has been edited by Chuck Everly (edited February 14, 2001).]
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Old 02-15-2001, 02:44 PM   #25
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No i havent seen that one yet
since its the april issue it will still be available won't it?

Thanks Chuck
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Old 02-17-2001, 09:13 PM   #26
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It's really not hard to make 350hp with a mellow cam and decent heads. The XE262 cam will make almost the same hp with more torque over a broader range, per COMP cams. Those Vortec are prettty nice for the scratch...

Chuck, check this site out, sorry if you already have. Another PRO-Vortec 400hp XE268 story. I believe it was posted by someone on this site before:

http://www.aros.net/~rbuck/chp/

[This message has been edited by FastBroker (edited February 17, 2001).]
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Old 02-18-2001, 12:50 AM   #27
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the vortec heads and zz-4 cam are good for some 12 second slips at the track. I think that It should be considered. the lift numbers are nearly perfect for the flow profile of the vortec heads. The split duration is good for these heads too. I bought a zz-4 cam after doing alot of research into these heads. I was hopeing that my car would be the test bed for the lower intake base that scoggin dickey is going to produce. i have since lost intrest in the vortec heads and i am more interested in a much more agressive setup. I have seen an s-10 with the vortec heads run low 13's at my local track that is at 3500 ft elevation. I have also seen this truck turn a 12.1 at the same track when an 8# ati was introduced to the combo. he also put 500 hp to the rears. That is easily an 11 second truck at sea level. also this was a carbed blown setup. it was not to presise with the fuel metering. with fuel injection i am sure that it would have run much faster. It is a proven combo. also the comp cams XE 262 is a good choice i have seen this combo in work in an 81 z-28 that was running high 13's at the same track. The s-10 did weigh a little less than the z-28 but the zz-4 cam made 20 something more horse power at the rears.

------------------
90 iroc l98
last season best corected 13.62 @102
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Old 02-18-2001, 12:02 PM   #28
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What are the specs on the ZZ4 cam?


------------------
'83 Firebird 2.8
'89 Firebird Formula 350
2nd owner, red/grey, t-tops, dual cats, and a 3.27:1 rear
K&N, TB bypass, No MAF screens, CAI, full Accel ignition
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Old 02-19-2001, 10:47 PM   #29
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I agree with greg in that the ZZ3/4 cam is good for the vortec heads. They have them at SDPC2000.com for like a hundred bucks or less, I think. Putting 1.55 rockers on the intake and 1.5 rockers on the exhaust helps that cam A TON, too... ie, needs a little more lift on the intake side if the heads can flow there, which the Vortecs can.
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Old 02-20-2001, 12:11 AM   #30
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The specs on the zz-4 cam are 208 intake and 221 exhaust duration and .474 intake and .510 exhaust lift. The vortec heads flow well to about .500 on the intake side and to about .550 on the exhaust side. The intake side is much stronger than the exhaust so you will need more exhaust duration than the intake duration.

------------------
90 iroc l98
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mods
full exhaust, AFPR, pulley, jet stage 1 chip, billet servo, 52mm throttle body and a few other little things.
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Old 02-20-2001, 12:24 AM   #31
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The exhaust has more DURATION on the zz4 cam. IMO, you need to get more LIFT on the intake side of the zz4 for the vortecs and you'll be good. Dyno proven.
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Old 02-20-2001, 03:54 PM   #32
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i've been looking for an intake manifold and found the new ZZ4 intake for a reasonable price.
Its a dual plane design
Would this mainifold perform worse than the performer RPM from edelbrock?

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Old 02-20-2001, 04:02 PM   #33
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Pretty much the same... Gm might be a little mellower.
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Old 02-20-2001, 07:14 PM   #34
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how is that supposed to bolt up to vortec heads?
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Old 02-20-2001, 09:42 PM   #35
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I found them from SDPC, they're a take off
it says they fit the vortec heads...at least thats what i understood

check it out

http://www.sdpc2000.com/cart.asp?act...d=839&pid=8143
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Old 02-21-2001, 03:03 AM   #36
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That looks very interesting. I wonder how it compares to the RPM manifold. I like the fact that it's got the EGR, good for those who get emissions tested. Does anybody know anything more about it? If the power band is like the RPM then this might be the manifold for me. I gotta give them a call tomorrow. Thanks for posting that info a day before I ordered the RPM.

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Old 02-21-2001, 01:15 PM   #37
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Could ya let me know about any info you get on it from them, im also considering but would like to know more about it
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Old 02-21-2001, 02:02 PM   #38
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How do you figure it has EGR provisions? I don't see it mentioned...

------------------
Ray87Z
-Vortec headed 350.
86 IROC w/ a cammed 305 TPI.
Formerly Ray86IROC.
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Old 02-21-2001, 05:16 PM   #39
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The ZZ4 intake will not fit the vortec heads period.... The vortec heads do not have exsaust cross over passages period.... Even if you could get an intake manifold that was egr compatible to fit it would not work period....sorry to be so blunt but I wanted everone that did not understand to realize it just ain't happening.

Steve
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Old 02-22-2001, 08:12 AM   #40
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They are calling that intake a ZZ4 intake though, clearly stating it is for vortecs. I believe it is just being mislabeled, should be the same vortec carb intake GM has been selling since the beginning. You'd have to plumb any EGR crap over from the exhaust manifolds if you have to jury rig something for EGR. I don't really know anyone who's done that or what intake they used it in conjunction with.

------------------
Ray87Z
-Vortec headed 350.
86 IROC w/ a cammed 305 TPI.
Formerly Ray86IROC.
www.inter-scape.com/Ray

[This message has been edited by Ray87Z (edited February 22, 2001).]
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