Gauging Interest in Complete Drop-in 350

Discussion in 'Small Block Tech' started by blyons79, Dec 1, 2021.

  1. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    So I’m going over to the “Dark side” and doing an LS Swap. So I’m deciding on whether I should sell my 350. It’s an excellent running motor and it would be complete from Carb to pan (all the “good stuff: SP3, 4150 750 carb, mildly ported heads, MSD dizzy and control box, TA cam, Doug’s headers, Powermaster starter and alt…all new everything from TA…timing cover, HD rocker arm assembly) Might have 2k miles on it since rebuild…maybe.

    Figured I’d try to gauge the interest here before I actually post a listing. If I don’t sell it would just be taking up space in my garage collecting dust and rust. Think it should go to a Buick enthusiast.
    knucklebusted likes this.
  2. gsjohnny1

    gsjohnny1 Well-Known Member

    you didn't say what yr or model. you need to look at it long term. try a house/ everybody's house in the hood is nice and presentable. but yours has roof singles saying i'm different. the windows are trapezoids, garage door is made out of pine boughs and the house is painted like the tv station closed for the night.
    sure, you like it here, but when it comes to selling the house, you are sucking pond water.
    now you can always fix the house back to be comparable to the rest of the hood and make some monies or take a beating. long term business wise, good or bad, it's your problem.
    that's how i look at it
  3. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    I have an interest in it as my motor is currently out and delayed at the 1st machine for 7 months. I'm moving it to another machine shop this weekend.

    There are two critical things I need to know before I'm excited.

    1. Any dyno results, RPM range, idle and/or running videos?
    2. What cam are you running?
    3. What compression did it come in at?
    4. Is the crank manual friendly?
    5. Is the driver's side of the block drilled for a clutch ball?
    I already have a lot of the things you list but I'd take the package deal if you and I can come to an arrangement. Killeen, TX is quite a ways off but I'm retired and itching to drive my car again.
    Dano likes this.
  4. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    I don’t have any Dyno results but it can be arranged. The machine shop helping with my LS build has an engine dyno. I can make a video of it running and or driving.

    Cam is:
    Product ID: TA_290-94H-350

    It’s a 70 SB code bored .040 over with Egge 10:1 ratio pistons. Not certain of actual CR.

    Not certain on questions 4 & 5…but I can certainly find out. I will be pulling the drivetrain in the next few weeks.
    knucklebusted likes this.
  5. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    Dyno results not required but was interested if you had them.

    That's the same cam I have good so far.

    So, it is still in the car and drivable?
  6. Mark Demko

    Mark Demko Well-Known Member

    No offense, but its a core.
    If a true Buick enthusiast bought it, they'd more than likely tear it down and see what he/she has.
    Why are you pulling your 350?
  7. Dano

    Dano Platinum Level Contributor

    I'm dyin' here Mark but I guess I'll just leave it at liking your comment, lol.
    Mark Demko and knucklebusted like this.
  8. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    Absolutely the car is drivable. I’ll post some pics and vids today.

    No offense taken. This is a solid motor though…no issues…every single thing is new except the crank, rods, block and heads…all hardware in the head are new except valves. I’m pulling it because I want a better motor…don’t want to piss anyone off here…I think Buick’s are cool and all and keeping my Buick all Buick has been the only reason I kept it. But I want a very reliable 450 horse motor with plenty of parts availability and aftermarket support. Let’s be honest…the 350 has its limitations.

    Look, for anyone that’s skeptical…I’m not trying to recoup any money or pull a fast one. It just doesn’t make sense for a perfectly good motor to be laying around my shop when I know someone can use it. But I won’t be giving it away either…but I can assure you the price will be more than fair.
    Mark Demko, Dano and knucklebusted like this.
  9. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    It's a 13+ hour drive, 2 solid days round trip.

    Let me know when you know about the clutch ball stud. I assume the crank can't be known without removal of the engine.

    When you say the heads were ported, did put bigger valves in them?
    Dano likes this.
  10. Dano

    Dano Platinum Level Contributor

    IMHO, that's one key to unlocking some performance. My last 350 had big valve ported heads and I think they helped tremendously (there were other changes too so hard to tell what did what) & on the KB build back in the '80's it made a big difference.
  11. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    No…valves are stock…let’s just call the heads messaged. I just cleaned up casting imperfections and smoothed out the sharp edges, etc…

    Just took a video. Can I only upload it as a YouTube video? I only see the option to upload pictures.
    knucklebusted likes this.
  12. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    Here are a few short clips:

    knucklebusted likes this.
  13. gsjohnny1

    gsjohnny1 Well-Known Member

    i'm r&d/exp machinist by trade. my group built machines, processes, set the machining stds, etc, etc.
    i like challenges. buick 350's give me that challenge. the 350 is half beaten my butt, not giving up until i beat it.
    the ls stuff gives me no challenge. everybody and their sister buy the same socks and underwear and thinks they got it.
    i'm building a twin v6 altered. spent over 1g on the coupler alone and still not right. my wife said just run one engine. nope
    my background, failure is not an option. it will be done with 2 engines.

    do you think if i asked the ls gurus why and how the 350 eats dist/cam gears, will they give me a credible answer. i doubt it.
    just my $.02
    Dano likes this.
  14. Fox's Den

    Fox's Den 27 years of racing the same 355 Buick motor

    now that's a challenge :)

    I would say you can get 450 hp out of a 350 Buick I was sitting at 395 25 years ago it should be no problem now

    don't ask gsjohnny about limitations
    Dano likes this.
  15. gsla72

    gsla72 Well-Known Member

    Interesting - I’m just down the road from you in San Antonio and come through the Killeen area for work a few times a month. My stock 350 smokes pretty badly and I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with it.

    I’d be interested pending some details and pricing. If this is still available would you mind PMing me some info on what you’re hoping to get for it?
    blyons79 likes this.
  16. Reidk

    Reidk Well-Known Member

    Can you melt the tires off with this engine?
  17. Mark Demko

    Mark Demko Well-Known Member

    The ONLY reason the LS is everybodys darling are the heads, and the Buick 350 has decent heads available now.
    The LS and Buick 350 are pretty damn similar in design, except the Buick has more displacement than a 5.3
    The LS's blow up/break just as easy as a Buick engine, maybe easier.
    The LS is a sweet engine tho, I gotta say that 'cause wifes Tahoe has one.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2021
  18. knucklebusted

    knucklebusted Well-Known Member

    But the LS is a belly button engine, every thing on the road has one. There is nothing new under the sun with an LS.

    I own Buicks because they aren't Chevelles, Mustangs or GTOs.
    Mart, Mark Demko, Doug Hoyle and 7 others like this.
  19. blyons79

    blyons79 Well-Known Member

    It’s a Buick… of course!

    The LS is simply a product of evolution. If a GS were made today it would have an LS. Not sure where they’re similar…6 bolt main, roller rockers and roller cam, no distributor, oil pump is driven by the crank, reluctor wheel is on the crank, coolant flow design is more efficient, oil flow is more efficient, head design is better. Again…I mean I get it. And will keep my 455 in case I ever want to build it. But for the cost of a simple head swap on a Buick 350 (if you can get a pair) you can build a solid 450 horse LS. I have enough challenges in my life, an LS is simply the path of least resistance to HP.

    And you do know LS’ come in 4.8, 5.3, 5.7, 6.0 and 6.2? I’m doing a 5.7 swap with a carb intake.

    My main reason for doing this is dollar per HP and parts availability. If I break anything on my Buick I’m down for a few weeks waiting on parts. If the LS breaks anything I can go to any parts store or junkyard in the country and be up in a day or two. Can I go ahead and get a pair of TA aluminum heads and see if it makes the power I want? Sure. But that’s the path of most resistance. And the truth is that these heads have been out for a few years now. Where are they? Where are all the 350s with aluminum heads. I haven’t seen one post or video.

    I told myself I’d stay away from this debate because it’s too late…I’m neck deep lol. And hey…it’s still a Buick after all. It’s just getting a heart transplant. :cool:
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2021
    Reidk likes this.
  20. Fox's Den

    Fox's Den 27 years of racing the same 355 Buick motor

    I get where you are coming from but if you think you can break a Buick 350 well I have to say you are dead wrong.

    I have ran nitrous and i hit the rev limiter at 6200 out of low gear dragracing a Mustang with a supercharger. The motor should have blown up at this moment but I shifted into second and put a front end on him. that was in 2005 and I was using a 125 shot at the time. I ran this for 4 more years then I decided to back it off when I heard something clank in the rear end.
    Then I backed it off to a 75-80 shot and I still hit the low 12's.

    I have had this car since 1977 and I have never had trouble with this motor. I rebuilt it once while it was in the car in 1981 rings and bearings
    In 1983 I added a comp cam 268 and headers rest stock beat the hell out of it raced anybody that wanted to. It took till 1994 to blew it up and I still drove it home. cracked crank

    Then I got it rebuilt by a racing shop and has been going strong ever since.

    When my brother walks up to the car and see a Chevy motor in it the first thing he will say is junk and walk away.

    I guess if you have a regular ol Skylark or a 4 door one the ls swap may not be as bad but I get it you want ease of replacement if something goes wrong.

    If that is the case what could go wrong with a ls motor. I still think the parts are not going to cost much less than a Buick you are using newer parts and they are more expensive now. headers are not cheap for these motors from what I see.

    ls motor, everyone gots one

    Beating someone with a 350 Buick motor will get you more respect than any other motor.

    you will build the Buick 350 once, I guarantee it for 20+ years.
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2021

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