All I Want For Christmas Is My Bulldog Block!!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Race 400/430/455' started by GS Kubisch, Dec 24, 2005.


    JEFF STRUBE Well-Known Member

    You never no what could happen Chris these Prices look good

    Ford Racing 351 - $3521
    GM Performance BBC - $4686
    World Products BBC - $4399

    I get Tired of Monoply world the One Source for Aftermarket Buick Part's
    You dont get alot of Options for Parts and i think that Sucks.

    They do have use by the balls!!!! that Sucks for lots of V8 Buick People.
    I will say no more i get Kicked of the Board to Much.:Dou:
  2. mygs462

    mygs462 Well-Known Member

    I'm a Buick man through and through so I'm gonna stay Buick just wish things would get easier.
  3. buicksstage1

    buicksstage1 Well-Known Member

    Shawn, sounds like the same combo I want to do:TU: Chris
  4. buicksstage1

    buicksstage1 Well-Known Member

    Only time will tell but he will need to sell alot more then 25 blocks to break even. I sure hope that buick people step up here:TU: Chris
  5. TuBBeD

    TuBBeD Well-Known Member

    The reason the 455 is so expensive to build in aluminum is because the stock piece is an inferior design for high horsepower applications. Buick never imagined these engines being pushed to the power levels racers' push them to. That is the reason for the expense of these blocks. Until tests are shown which block is better, TA's or Bulldog's, they are equal in my eyes. TA has all their eggs in the Buick basket where Bulldog has their's in other makes.

    I would say, save yourself $15,000+ and build a 1,000+ hp 350 with a power adder(s) and not be afraid of risking your savings if it blows up. Racing is supposed to be about having fun first, not going broke.
  6. d7cook

    d7cook Guest

    The one Bulldog block running I saw is making a LOT of power and appears to be working. But more importantly Bulldog also proved a lot of people are willing to pony up for a cast iron block.

    6K isn't a bad price for a low production aluminum block. That's about what an Indy Cylinder Head block goes for (Chrysler) after it is finished (as long as TA's 6K is finish decked, clearanced for stroker cranks, etc.).

    What Indy did discover is that they sold very few aluminum blocks! They sell a boatload of cast iron blocks. Why? One biggy is cost (double) and the other is that as much as the "repairable" thing sounds good it's really not an issue. Aluminum blocks cost a lot to repair for one and people discovered that the aftermarket cast iron block engines just don't blow up very often. Once you fix all the problems associated with a production block the engines stay together.

    I just hope TA eventually makes a 3K cast iron block. I think they'll sell alot of them. As far as I know the same molds can be used, iron is cheaper than aluminum, it machines easier and you don't have to sleeve the cylinders or lifter bushings.
  7. RAMKAT2

    RAMKAT2 Randy

    Well guys, I have been doing engineering and design work since 1979, and I can tell you right now that T/A probably has somewhere between $100-150K in development time on these blocks already. You don't spend a year or more working out the basic package, doing all the revisions, then adding a better design in one area that requires you to modify a different part of the design somewhere else, without running up the costs. Mike asked us for input here on the board during this process, which probably cost him a couple of months more just to add some of the design features that we asked for. He couldn't just copy the existing block either. Every aspect of the block had to be re-engineered and strengthened to handle the horsepower levels that Buick racers wanted to achieve. Considering the weak thinwall castings that Buick started with, that in itself had to be one hell of a job. When he is done, It will take years to recoup the costs involved.
    But one thing is for sure. He stepped up to the plate when no one else would. Judging from the comments here on the board, the "bulldog block" left everyone with a very bad attitute about Buick aftermarket blocks. I certainly hope that all of you here that still have money out there waiting on the bulldog block can get it back, but we can't just demonize the efforts of the next guy to tackle the job if we want to move forward.
    I won't argue the fact that $6k is alot of money. There won't be one of these blocks in my garage anytime soon. But for the guys that need it, who spend $15-30k on a motor to go play with the big dogs, it is peace of mind, and a way to make consistent horsepower without building a "grenade" that is just waiting to go off at the worst possible moment.
    The old saying is still true today. Racing costs fast do you want to go?

    P.S. By the way, I have never met Mike at T/A, or bought any of his parts. I just appreciate the fact that he keeps working to make his products better, and adding new ones when there is a demand for them. That is good business, and we need more people like him providing products to the Buick community.
  8. Jim Weise

    Jim Weise EFI/DIS 482


    I wasn't addressing you or anyone else in particular, with my comments. Just stating the facts.

    As soon as we have a block, any block, I am sure there will be a number of builds like your planning. TA has been working on a lower cost crank for some time, but obviously won't do that crank, until the block design work is finished, and the prototype is made, due to any possible changes that may come about.

    Gotta make the big piece, that everything fits into first.

    TA has proven time and again, for 25 years now, that they know how to produce quality Buick Performance parts, and know how to do it and stay in business at the same time, and that is not always the easiest thing to do in a small market such as this. No way this gets built even 10 years ago.. TA was not big enough to absorb the cost, and the market was not there. 10 years ago, only the serious guys had Aluminum heads.. now a whole lot of folks do. It's a natural progression, that will in time produce the parts we have been waiting for, and no risk to us, the end user (TA pays all the development costs).

    After the block fiasco of the last.. what is it 5 or 6 years now..??.. I have a hard time with anyone who wants to bitch about an outfit that is eating all the developement costs, in the hope that they will sell some product.


    PS.. Shawn..sounds like you need to find a new body shop, if they got you so frustrated that you sold a new motor for a 5K loss.. ouch..
  9. Jim Weise

    Jim Weise EFI/DIS 482

    I'm gonna have to take issue with a couple comments here, from my perspective as a guy who builds a couple dozen or so 450-600 HP street motors here a year. I have probably 25 iron blocks in stock, right now, that can do that job, with proper prep and machine work, and the right internals. No need for a 3K aftermarket block for a 600 Hp engine. Take a good stock block, and a gridle, and you can safely go to 700 HP, for less than 3K invested in the block.

    The majority of guys above that level of HP, are very concerned about weight, and the last thing I want between the frame rails of my tube chassis car, is a bunch of cast iron.

    We need a block for the 700+ HP engines, the vast majority of the blocks will be in race cars, and having an aluminum block in those cars, will be a huge advantage for weight savings. And lower weight = faster et's, which is the point in the first place.

    And there will always be guys, who want the alumium block for the "Cool" factor, and aluminum is "way cooler" than iron..

    Now, give us another 8 to 10 years building the BBB and using up the finite supply of iron blocks, and then the market for an iron replacement block will be there.

    But not now, not in my professional opinion.

    Indy sells a lot of blocks, because there are a ton more guys running Mopars out there, and they have seriously depleted the stock of their blocks, much more so than us Buick guys have.

    And don't think that everything is rosy when you can buy a new block, quality still matters.. I was just looking at a pretty high buck aftermarket block, from a well known supplier.. that needed a line hone, because the main saddles were cupped, due to poor machine work. This piece was brand new, right out of the box.

    Quality is just as important, or more so, than price, or material.
  10. mygs462

    mygs462 Well-Known Member

    Sorry JW it looked like you directly addressed my comments, If you didn't I appologize, As for the car, if its not touched come spring i'm gonna pull it and work on it myself. I can do a better job than no job. As for selling the motor recouping 12k of my 17 was better than none, Gary Paine got a great deal and Ole' great scat should fly this year.
  11. Jim Weise

    Jim Weise EFI/DIS 482

    Ya, sounds like the old man will be flyin' this year... :TU:

    Damn.. .I gotta get back into racing..

    Maybe next year..

  12. d7cook

    d7cook Guest

    There are plenty of 440 blocks still around (I have 5) and most Mopar bracket racers people build 400 blocks now anyway. Mopars went through the same thing a little earlier than Buicks did. Stock blocks worked when there were only stock heads. After putting on cylinder heads that could flow more than 350 cfm the blocks were a crap shoot. The stock blocks were found to be lacking in strength, required a lot of work (aluminum main caps, girdles, etc.) and they still cracked. Since a 440 block and a hemi block are almost identical there were aluminum 440 blocks available since the 70's but no one bought them. When ma Mopar started making aftermarket cast iron blocks they were doing it because of the demand for Hemi blocks and once again since a Hemi and a 440 are so close they made them for a 440 as well. What nobody anticipated is they sold every 440 block they could make! World Products is now making them for Mopar to keep up with demand.

    A good cast iron after market block can go to 1000+HP. While a factory block can go to say 750 + HP it requires so many band aids in the form of block girdles, lifter girdles, oil modifications, etc, etc, that the extra coin for an after market cast iron block is a bargain in my opinion. It's $1200 for a TA block girdle, halo and lifter girdle. Installed for another $500 or so and you still haven't cleaned, bored, decked, modified the oiling, etc. etc. After all that they still break.

    I'm all for an aluminum block and I'm not arguing anyones opinion, knowledge or wants but I just think (from what I've seen in the Mopar world) not making a quality cast iron block IN ADDITION TO an aluminum block is a mistake because that will be the biggest market.

    Checked prices for comparison if anyones interested. Last weekend at Indy they had Mopar blocks, 4.5" finished bore for $2500. Mancini has aluminum Mopar blocks for $6000. Indy has there own aluminum block for $4200 but needs $750 worth of machining to equal the cast iron blocks. Chevy will allways be cheaper but when comparing Buicks to Mopars it looks to me like TA's $6000 price is fair.

    I also came across this on Hughes Engines web site that people may find interesting.

    We sold several sets of Bulldog cylinder heads when they were available. They have not been available to us for well over two years now and phone calls, e-mails and faxes have all gone unanswered by Bulldog. Therefore we are left to assume that they are no longer in business.

    Like any new product there were some original production and casting problems. We have repaired these problems, and there were plenty, on our own with no help from the manufacturer, at no charge or at a very reduced price because we felt this was the right thing to do. However, we now feel that the time has come that we can no longer repair the design and manufacturing problems that were not of our making.

    Therefore, as of September 1st, 2006 we will treat these Bulldog manufactured problems as we would any other job and give no special pricing or consideration.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 4, 2008
  13. pooods

    pooods Well-Known Member

    Sorry to bring this up for many of you, but I am very curious about what ever happened to all you deposit payers! It is amazing to me that the company never produced for all of you. Any news? Litigation in the future possibly? I would have probably contacted a lawyer by now. Will the courts help? Who knows?
  14. 69GS400s

    69GS400s own amusement ride!

    ... bold question there John

    biggest market/units sold does not necessarily mean greatest profits ... but if you factor in all the other parts/profit that will probably be ordered along with a block purchase I'd say the money stream would be stronger.
  15. bob k. mando

    bob k. mando Guest

    interesting. i picked up the December 08 Hot Rod mag today and they made a comment that Maximum Torque Specialties bought the designs ( and molds? ) for the Bulldog Cadillac heads and intake off of Dick back in the middle of 2007. evidently, Bradshaw is now out of the Caddy game altogether.

    what this means to the Buick customers i have no idea.
  16. bostongsx

    bostongsx Platinum Level Contributor

    I'm out 1500 and would like to know dicks address so I can have him served.
  17. 10sec 455

    10sec 455 Well-Known Member

    I am sure Jim Burek has contact info he should share with you.
  18. bob k. mando

    bob k. mando Guest

    would like to know dicks address so I can have him served.

    when i visited Bradshaw's shop a couple of years ago, it was on the south east side of Indianapolis. Elmwood is the name of the street that the his industrial rental space was off of. don't know if that will help at all.
  19. bostongsx

    bostongsx Platinum Level Contributor

    I went there too, his phone is disconnected.
  20. gymracer01

    gymracer01 Well-Known Member

    Another Christmas coming and where is the Bulldog? I sure feel for the people that got taken in by this. My Grandady always told me to lay your hands on it before you lay out the cash. He didn't believe in mail ordering.
    Jim N.

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