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Old 06-20-2018, 03:54 AM
the427king the427king is offline
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Default 1979 TA hi performance motor

looking to put a high performance motor in a 1979 TA 400 455 or whatever else...aluminum heads ok or not ...only requirements are that the original "shaker" setup be retained which probably means keeping the original carb . . Also not looking to cut up or modify the car/etc
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Old 06-20-2018, 04:30 AM
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Baron Von Zeppelin Baron Von Zeppelin is offline
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Do you have a certain HorsePower range in mind ?
Do you have a Pontiac core engine available besides the matching # engine to build ?


on side note - is the car a factory 400 4spd or a 403 Automatic ?

Mainly that will just tell if you need a replacement air cleaner base.
The 403 Olds is offset , if you go back with a Pontiac engine , you will need a base that is centered - not offset.
Not that hard to find , just worth mentioning.
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Old 06-20-2018, 05:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the427king View Post
looking to put a high performance motor in a 1979 TA 400 455 or whatever else...aluminum heads ok or not ...only requirements are that the original "shaker" setup be retained which probably means keeping the original carb . . Also not looking to cut up or modify the car/etc
In no way trying to heckle or troll , just supplying some info to you - and get more info from you.


Quote:
400 455 or whatever else ... not looking to cut up or modify the car/etc.
= No probo , all the Poncho engines are same exterior size/platform and will lay right in there. 326cid-455cid
The only catch is to stay 1970 and newer , for motor mount variances.
Older than 1970 can cause need for adapter plates that raise the engine height and create headaches with hood shaker clearance.


Quote:
aluminum heads ok or not
= Not sure whether you are asking if they are okay to use - and keep the shaker ? Most are fine for that , but some of the newer exotics are not as friendly for that.

If they fit your budget , they are a plus .
One reason being ability to build higher Comp Ratio with better Quinch Zone - and still be pump gas friendly.



Either way you have about 100 build options regardless of iron or aluminum head that will make tremendous street power on pump gas.
The higher the HP goal with iron heads - the trickier it gets with proper ignition timing and detonation using only pump gas - in most cases.


If its the 800cfm Qjet carb from a 79 400 4spd TA - that is a great unit for a Hi-Po build. Not sure what the Olds 403 came with on the carb.


Are you looking to buy a complete ready to roll engine outright ?

Or build your own with your own supplied core - and just seeking CID / Head / Cam recommendations ?

Or looking for a good core to start with ?
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Old 06-20-2018, 05:20 AM
the427king the427king is offline
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It is a 400 4 speed car. Open to most anything Dont have a set budget,if i like it,id spend more I guess. Id like around 400HP, or more Wouldnt mind 400 cu in w aluminum heads and intake w headers and stock carb .....Its a 31K mile car 4 speed with every option black on black w blue decals and 4 wheel discs.But motor was apart when i got it,not for any obvious reason it checked out OK
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Old 06-20-2018, 06:14 AM
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Baron Von Zeppelin Baron Von Zeppelin is offline
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Okay, if you're sure you really want to do this with a 31k car - GROOVY Man.
I can relate, 79 400 4spd 4wdb are the best all around TA ever built !
If you plan to keep it , why not have it the way you want it.

They are bringing Strong Coin now though , 31k with #'s match is a prime candidate for shiny coins. If you rebuild the original PWH code engine instead , and just flip it.

400hp is real simple and you can do iron heads pretty easy.
Since you are okay with buying new aluminum heads (< sweet) - from that point it will only cost about $100 extra to hit around 500-550hp .
And can still go higher and higher on HP with pump gas - for more additional coins.

We need to get you hooked up with Cliff Ruggles and you guys work a plan based on your comfort zone. If he is in proximity of your logistics.

He builds incredible pump gas engines , and usually comes in with better quotes than most everyone else. Has tried and true combos that dont have to break the bank just for the sake of selling more expensive parts.

He is also a master Q-Jet builder/tuner.
It will support your HP goals no probo.

I bought a 79 4,4,4 TA from original owner in 1985
Dk Blue/Blue/Blue Bird , Non T-Top , all options except Pwr Antenna.
Sold to my youngest brother in 2002 or 03.
He'll keep it forever , and we're gonna build him something just like you are wanting to do.

If you think you will sell it in near future - you will recoup about $0 of the expenditure of the Hi-Po replacement/substitute engine.
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Old 06-20-2018, 07:40 AM
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One more caution -
just in case you decide to buy a core engine off craigslist tomorrow -

Stay away from 400 engine blocks with Part Number/Casting Number that have a lot of 5's in the part number.
Forgot the exact part number.
And forgot the date ranges too.
Think its 1975 and 1976

Regardless - that specimen is the only bad specimen , and the only specimen with numerous 5's in the number.
So just remember the 5's.
Number located along bellhousing-to-block flange.

1979 4.4.4. TA's are such great cars, they just really need more juice.
Everything else about them is just right.
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Old 06-20-2018, 10:57 AM
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If you want to review my Gramma car thread from the last couple years you can follow the swap we did from the original 160 hp Pontiac 350 to the 400 hp 455. It was easy - just bolted right into place with the same parts. There are even certain cylinder head combinations that give you a really nice 9.5 to 1 compression ratio. Our 1975 350 just happened to have that exact pair of heads on it to begin with so it ended up just being a short block swap with a 1971 455 block I found locally. I even did a shaker hood swap last month with factory parts.

https://www.yenko.net/forum/showthrea...=113621&page=7
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Old 06-20-2018, 12:42 PM
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I vote stroker kit - keeps all the mods inside and 400hp easily done, otherwise follow Baron's recos. Especially on the cliff ruggles carb - no need for aluminum heads here Chuck, but maybe a street port and clean-up of the originals. The 78-79 481988XX W72 block is one of THE best Pontiac blocks for high-horse mods so no worries there.

That'll be a nice car - good luck.

P.S. The weak block Baron is referring to is the 500557 block used mid-1975 to 1977. Not a great block to build 400+ horses with. Avoid.
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  #9  
Old 06-20-2018, 01:44 PM
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Wow Steve you really did a number on Granny's Bird.
Seems like i remember that maybe you were upgrading that engine for your son / with your son on PY in the past.

Both of these units were mine in 1985.
Thats not me in the picture, my hair was never that long.

These 4.4.4. TA's would actually wake up quite a bit with some normal cheap easy upgrades. #1 was disabling all emission devices and cutting the scoop open, then true duals and recurving distributor. Mine was fairly swift and i really enjoyed that car.
Little brother was born in 79 , and he's proud to have my 79.

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Old 06-20-2018, 02:06 PM
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Solid info from Steve and Tracker.

The only thing i would hesitate about - is building up that #'s engine.
It is a prime piece to build , especially as a 455+ stroker.

But the way 77-79 4spd TA's have taken off , you'd ruin half the value and desirability if you broke that #'s engine.

With 400-500+ HP in one of these - YOU WILL DRIVE THE HELL OUT OF IT.
They take the road real well, it really can't be helped at that point.
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