Help me understand rebuild vs crate?

Discussion in 'Small Block Mopar Engine' started by stumblinhorse, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. stumblinhorse

    stumblinhorse Well-Known Member

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    I am putting together my plan for a rebuild on my 318 in the fall picking out pistons etc.

    It will be a mild street engine. So I am doing a bore and hone, squaring the block etc. New Pistons and heads with roller rockers and new cam/lifters/pushrods.

    So my question is all in with me doing all the work it is going to cost me about $3500-4000 to do the rebuild. Machining with balancing is $800, new LAX heads with rockers are $1500. KB 167 +.020 Pistons and rings are $400, New cam, lifters, pushrods, timing chain and gaskets is about another $1000. Then small incidentals, head bolts, fluids total $3500-4k.

    I can buy a dressed long block 408 from blueprint for $5000.

    I really wanted to rebuild myself, but I am not sure having a mild 318 for 4k is better than a mild 408 for 5k.
     
  2. Darter6

    Darter6 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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    Pros and cons all day long. It can be satisfying to do it yourself. But a 318 vs a 408 ? The 408 hands down for sure. Can't beat it for the price.
     
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    • replicaracer43

      replicaracer43 Old school member

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      The 408 is hands down better than the 318, plus with blueprint you get a pretty darn good warranty
       
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      • Johnny Mac

        Johnny Mac www.blueprintengines.com FABO Vendor

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        Thanks for the mention and the interest! I'd like to weight in, and I'll let the masses take it from there.
        We're an outstanding company, and we offer a 50K mile, 30 month warranty with any of our engines. We also Dyno test every single one of them. I really think that's worth its weight in gold. You also get your actual dyno sheet with your engine. You also have myself as a company representative and activists at your disposal for any assistance I can be.
        The value we provide comes from being such a large company, and having the ability to purchase or manufacture parts in bulk. We truly can sell engines cheaper than an individual can purchase all the parts in most cases. Now there is a sense of pride with building your own engine, and thats understood, but for the individual that realizes the value, and the horsepower per dollar we provide, thats where we shine. The numerous QC checks, and test that our engines and parts go through allows us to offer what I feel is the best overall package and support in the industry.

        I'll be happy to answer any questions I can, and glad to help if/when you're ready. Best luck with the car either way!

        Johnny M
        Director of Project Development
        BluePrint Engines
         
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        • 68383GTS

          68383GTS Well-Known Member

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          Do it yourself and buy a 390 kit. I would never do another crate motor. Mine lasted about 50 miles
           
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          • abodyjoe

            abodyjoe Well-Known Member

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            Crate engines the companies buy in bulk for a better price so it’s really hard to beat a crate engine price wise.

            Does blueprint offer a 360 crate? May be even cheaper for ya. :)
             
          • Johnny Mac

            Johnny Mac www.blueprintengines.com FABO Vendor

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            We don't. If we're buying a new crank, cost the same to MFG a 360 vs a 408. We do offer the iron head magnum engine at less $$$ than the edelbrock headed version. or..a short block if someone has heads worth re-using.
             
          • dano

            dano Evil Handy Man

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            If you don't have the place, tools, know how, reputable machine shop (this is a big one) and time to build your own then a crate looks pretty good.
             
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            • Syleng1

              Syleng1 Karma is real and Life is short... FABO Gold Member

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              Ill add my 2 cents and just to say: I'm not loyal to any one company but Mother MoPar.

              Rebuilding 40 year old technology is pretty straight forward and many books have been written on the subject walking you thru every aspect of the job.
              Finding a good machinist that will take on a old V-8 and get it right is tough because most that are left (still alive) are either very busy (because they are really good) OR realize they can bang out 2 subaru engines and make twice as much money in the same time. I just rebuilt a 74" 318 for the 66' I've yet to drop it in and I've personally have rebuilt over 25 engines that are still running today healthy.
              It's a lot of work, requires a lot of special tools (if this is your first time) and you can not ever be "clean enough."
              BUT on that note... when you first hear your own engine run... "PRIDE" is measured from the cheak to cheak in a smile.:thumbsup:

              For me its all about your time. What is your time worth? Buy it done and drop it in and drive or spend your time (it does take a while) and do it your way and be proud.
              Those to me are the 2 avenues you can take and end up with a good running engine either way.

              Good luck and keep us posted. And remember to ask questions if you get stuck. There are plenty of people on here that would love to help you.
              Joe
               
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              • Caco2120

                Caco2120 Well-Known Member

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                Blueprint is an awesome company and we are lucky enough to have a member of their management team active in here. If you go crate, theyd be my only choice. The fear of murphys law is what would make this decision easy for me. I have built plenty of engines in the past and one mysterious bearing failure on one i did myself, and that was enough to lead me to a dyno tested offering with a warranty from now on. I suppose if i had built 25 myself with zero issues i may be on the fence. But then looking at the cost of machine work and parts would steer me right back to blueprint.
                 
                Last edited: Jun 6, 2018
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                • Dartswinger70

                  Dartswinger70 Well-Known Member

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                  Also time. For the extra $1000 the OP will save the time of engine assembly. Buy the crate and drop it in, done.
                   
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                  • stumblinhorse

                    stumblinhorse Well-Known Member

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                    I have not ever rebuilt an engine before, but was thinking it was something that I wanted to do. But I don't know that I will get more satisfaction out of all the work , time and money to end up with a 300HP 318 vs no work but a little more money for a 375HP 408 with a warranty.
                     
                  • yellow rose

                    yellow rose Doctor of Thinkology.

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                    As mentioned...stroke the 318. The difference between the 390 and the 408 is small. Do it yourself just for the experience.

                    If you can run your cable box you can do this. It will just take you longer. Measure everything. Get a factory service manual. Ask questions.

                    You'll do fine.
                     
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                    • torred0319

                      torred0319 Well-Known Member

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                    • General Disarray

                      General Disarray Well-Known Member

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                      Yes, building an engine and hearing your creation come to life can make you smile, cheek to cheek, or frown check to check. Your rebuild, your warranty. Blueprint gets rave reviews from several sources. You have to compare equally. How much is the additional cubic inches, extra horsepower and torque, and 30 month / 50,000 mile warranty worth? $1,000? Only you can decide. Have fun regardless.
                       
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                      • nm9stheham

                        nm9stheham Well-Known Member

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                        The 390 path seems like a good way to go to me. If you've really wanted to do the rebuild, then why short yourself of the experience? You'll be out roughly the same money at the crate engine. No engine builder is perfect.. you or a reman.
                         
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                        • doogievlg

                          doogievlg Well-Known Member

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                          Do what ever you want to. It’s your car.
                           
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                          • MoparLeo

                            MoparLeo NRA PATRON LEVEL LIFE MEMBER FABO Gold Member

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                            "Crate engine" is a very complicated subject. The original "crate" engines were factory assembled with all new parts including the block, heads. Now everybody uses the adjective of "Crate" engine to describe their assembled engines, with no guarantees as to the actual quality of the package other than their personal claims. There are the Mopar factory "crate" engines GM "crate" engines and then there are a million others. Like anything else, DO YOUR HOMEWORK !! And remember this always, " The quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten."
                             
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                            • cannucky

                              cannucky The Guy With No Birthday

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                              yes knowledge is power . You said new LAX heads for $1500 you might find they need a little massaging and that costs money , special tools cost money , you are probably going to find you have way underestimated the true cost of building it yourself with gaskets etc...and that $1000 savings doesn't exist .I would buy as complete as you can afford because the builder has a better supply cost than you and will add all sorts of bolt ons needed to be complete at a much better cost than you can buy them just to get your business . I bought my stroker complete from carb to pan , water pump back to distributor and saved a ton of cash on those 4 things plus everything tied to them .
                               
                            • stumblinhorse

                              stumblinhorse Well-Known Member

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                              Well I appreciate the opinions! I guess if I am willing to drop 5k on a crate engine, dropping 5k on a home built 390 is no more money, just more time and risk..

                              I looked a lot at stroker kits but I kind of thought that why would I do a 390 for the same price as a 408 from blueprint? But it comes down to “do it yourself” or pay someone else to do it. That is the real decision.
                               
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                              • Caco2120

                                Caco2120 Well-Known Member

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                                other than if something goes south on your build, or during break-in, or at any point in the next 30 months.... plus whats a shop charge to dyno a homebrewed creation these days? $500+ ? that's a lot of value added IMO.
                                 
                              • Max1196

                                Max1196 Well-Known Member

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                                How's the rest of the package? Is it up for the transplant? Brakes, suspension, steering, rear axle, transmission?
                                 
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                                • stumblinhorse

                                  stumblinhorse Well-Known Member

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                                  It is a driver. I have replaced the floors and redone the interior. Everything else is pretty good. No power anything or AC. Very simple and working. Only upgrade it needs is the 8 3/4” 3.55 rear end is open not sure grip.
                                   
                                • RustyRatRod

                                  RustyRatRod Just another dumbass. FABO Gold Member Technical Editor

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                                  The reward to ME of being able to say "I built it" is FAR better than pulling out the wallet and buying something. I don't give a shit what people say. I will build my own engines. Period.

                                  A lot of the people who buy crate engines don't know a connecting rod from a rocker arm.......and don't care. When you build your own and get it right, you are doing something that fewer people know how to do VS just buying something. How can anything get any cooler?
                                   
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                                  • famous bob

                                    famous bob mopar misfit

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                                    I didn`t read all these posts, skipped to the bottom cause rrr commented last.
                                    I have always built my own, namely because I never had the $$ to lay out all at once to buy one !
                                    There are 7-8 guys on here that's got it going on----------------rrr don`t get the big head ! lol
                                     
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