What would you do?

Small Block Mopar Engine

  1. DusterDaddy

    DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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    731594BB-F6DE-4CA9-AF85-AB1FF83D48F7.jpeg 766D2DCD-EB54-4EA5-8D36-C3CA42337068.jpeg C630B644-442C-4EF8-9379-92C268FCD431.jpeg So I put this car back together with a driveline like it left the factory with.
    318/904/8.25

    The motor is basically stock with Summit cam similar to the mopar purple cam. Added an Edelbrock 1406 on a Performer intake and dual exhaust using 340 exhaust manifolds.

    The trans is stock with a Transgo shift kit. The converter is the factory stock “ high stall “ converter used on the 74 Duster 360.

    The 8-1/4 rear now has a sure grip with 3.55 gears. I got the setup from Dr Diff.

    Rear tires are 245/60/15. The car is fun to drive and when you mash the gas she will spin the tires really good and chirp them when the trans hits 2nd gear.

    I just bought a set of 302 heads and I want to have them reworked with 1.88/1.60 valves.

    I have had a few guys tell me to ditch the 318 and put this 302 heads on a new 360 short block and not look back.

    I kinda like that the car is still 318 powered and the idea of keeping it sort of true to how it was built resonates well with me.

    I was thinking of calling Hughes Engines and asking for help with building a nice setup using those reworked 302 heads. I know that a different converter is probably going to be part of the upgrade as well.

    What would you do?
     
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    • toolmanmike

      toolmanmike Moderator Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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      You have a lot of good going on. I would be tempted to keep it as is especially if it runs well. It's a really nice car.
       
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      • dano

        dano Evil Handy Man

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        I'm with Mike, if it runs well and you enjoy it leave it alone. If your looking for more power build a new engine. So what is your goal and how do the 302 heads possibly fit into that?
         
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        • toolmanmike

          toolmanmike Moderator Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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          Especially if it can spin the tires and bark second. All more power will do for you is spin tires more may be to the point of out of control and burn more gas. It's up to you.
           
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          • mopowers

            mopowers Well-Known Member

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            1. What's your goal?
            2. What's your budget?
             
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            • DusterDaddy

              DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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              I have not thought it through yet. From time to time the idea of a 408 Magnum crate engine has popped into my head, but I’ve become attached to this 318. 060C2140-D94F-4C24-ABEA-3042059D75C8.jpeg 5B534798-5AC5-4736-A09B-87A137F72163.jpeg
               
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              • DusterDaddy

                DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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                Here is a walkaround with the mighty little 318 running.

                 
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                • Allencf

                  Allencf Member

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                  If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!!
                   
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                  • royslead

                    royslead Well-Known Member

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                    More power, because a few guys said you should. You say you like it, keeping sort of true resonates well with you, and you are attached to the 318. If it were me, with the same feelings toward it, I would leave it as is. It's a beauty, it runs good. Wait, until there is a good reason to change it.
                     
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                    • Furious65

                      Furious65 C-body Guy

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                      Personally, I would keep that car like it is and find another car to play with!

                      Off topic, what color code is that beautiful red paint?
                       
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                      • dirty white boy

                        dirty white boy 50 yr old Juvenal delinquent

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                        ant enuff difference to mess with it unless you port the 302s and go bigger valves! a set of J heads with a good shave will have you buying the most tires!
                         
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                        • DusterDaddy

                          DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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                          Thank you! 1974 Plymouth E5 Rallye Red
                          I already have this 96 Ferd I could not pass up! Had to add it to the gas guzzling fleet. Lots of new sheet metal and paint on the pickup. The box truck and pickup have over 700,000 miles between them on the original motors. So this is rest of my fossil fuel consuming toys I can play with too. 22D35C21-B65C-46A6-9D2A-06F07B3D4765.jpeg 7A9B5BB8-7CD9-4B56-91BB-7C248D87D9E8.jpeg F379B2DD-B241-438D-97DC-1094A20ADD7E.jpeg 8880C799-B06F-496F-89D2-C11FE28B8026.jpeg 7C5248EE-02A8-460E-A1D7-066CE8E5B290.jpeg
                           
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                          • DusterDaddy

                            DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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                            So I’ll leave the Duster as she is and use the 302 heads to keep the barn doors from swinging shut
                             
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                            • 89on35s

                              89on35s Inferno Red Duster FABO Gold Member

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                              I totally understand! I am running a 318 now and I really like it! Not sure I'll go back to the 360. Maybe the 360 will have to go in another car.

                              Cley
                               
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                              • Jim Kueneman

                                Jim Kueneman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                Doesn't matter what any of us would do, does it do what you want it to? I have a stock 318 in my Coronet 500. I could give a rats ass about the comments that it needs a 440. For what I want it for I love the 318. The next question is how do you drive it? If you don't wind the crap out it why change the heads? I have Toth heads on the daughters Duster (more for cooling and no spark knock so she does not have to worry about those things) and if I wind them past 4000 RPM the Duster keeps pulling for sure but how many times have I taken them past 4000 RPM in either car? Once each... to do this comparison. If it puts a smile on your face everytime you drive it then it is perfect.
                                 
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                                • B3422w5

                                  B3422w5 Well-Known Member

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                                  sounds like you are happy with how it runs currently, and dont take it to the track.
                                  Going through the time and money of upgrading the heads is only gonna make it spin the tires a bit longer.
                                  Not much return on investment if you are already happy.
                                  Kinda like getting a boob job done on an already nice pair
                                   
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                                  • Stephen Mulkey

                                    Stephen Mulkey FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                    Duster daddy you have such a nice car it reminds me of my 70 340 a long time ago. I'm 65 now and i love your outlook on the 318. It's been one of my favorite engines for enjoyment of the sport we love.
                                    If you want pure power you have lots of ways to go but in my old age your 318 is a great driver.
                                     
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                                    • DusterDaddy

                                      DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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                                      It’s all I can do to keep from pissing my pants ever time I walk past the car in the garage. It took 8 years of free time in the evenings to get the car put back together.
                                      A few times a week I’ll slip the cover off the front of the car, open the hood and just grin. I love it ! 61B9FE75-D5F9-41C5-BBC3-A9C0DD1D3471.jpeg 6B8CD7B8-C3CA-44DC-B617-E9C16FFF38CD.jpeg 0FDC5602-B2B4-4FEA-95BD-DACFF4B9800C.jpeg
                                       
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                                      • Jim Kueneman

                                        Jim Kueneman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                        You answered your own question. The heads won't do enough to matter if you are not at the track. Just use the money to buy gas to drive it.
                                         
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                                        • Stephen Mulkey

                                          Stephen Mulkey FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                          Jim you are right on.
                                          Enjoy what you have built. It is a great example of our sport, of preserving our love of these fine Mopars.
                                           
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                                          • Jim Kueneman

                                            Jim Kueneman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                            Oh and those that mock your 318 I will guarantee have not driven a finely tuned 318 with 3.55 gears.... ever?
                                             
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                                            • Ironracer

                                              Ironracer Gearhead

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                                              You have my rides older brother

                                              20210429_231341.jpg
                                               
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                                              • Ironracer

                                                Ironracer Gearhead

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                                              • DusterDaddy

                                                DusterDaddy sledgehammer mechanic FABO Gold Member

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                                                If it’s ever been mocked, it was behind my back for sure. When I’m out tearing around with the car on the weekends, guys just make the assumption it’s a 340 or 360 under the hood.
                                                 
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                                                • 408 swinger

                                                  408 swinger FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                                                  Looks to me like you put a lot of heart and soul into that. You clearly had a plan and executed. Very well too, I might add. It looks very proper under that hood. I wouldn't change one dang thing.
                                                   
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