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Old 02-11-2012, 04:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Build 402 or buy crate

Ok guys my old 402 is getting pretty tired and I'll need to do something about it before too long.
The motor is in a 1994 Jeep on 2.5's and 14.9x24 R2. I don't race; we just go the local mud park and act stupid 5 or 6 weekends out of the year.
I'm looking to get a solid 400hp 400tq motor.
Option 1- the cheapest option is to build up the 402 but I classify this engine as the 305 of the big block world so I almost hate to put money in it.
Option 2- Go with a bigger bb and buy and build a 454.
Option 3- Buy a crate 355 or 383.
Again this is strictly mud toy that weighs around #6000.
Is the torque curve on BB that much lower than a SB?
I donít plan on spending more than $4000 I would like to keep it at $3000
Thanks for the help.
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Old 02-11-2012, 05:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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You should be able to make well over 400hp with any chevy big block and $4000. OK maybe not the 366, but 402s were not that bad of an engine. put a decent set of heads on it and see what it does.
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Old 02-11-2012, 05:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
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call kittlers in shereport and see what they would charge to bulid u a motor, that's who built my motor in my jeep 4 years ago. and i cut it no slack.
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Old 02-11-2012, 05:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks, I had heard of a good builder up there but didnt know who it was.
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Old 02-11-2012, 06:33 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Buddy of mine always referred to them as the 283 of big-blocks (he always ran 396/402's until he got his 482), so I had to chuckle at your remark. You've already got the thing set up for the BB, so just freshen up what you have and put on a decent intake & carb, and give it a little life with a cam.
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Old 02-11-2012, 07:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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if you only want 400horse/400 ft-lbs heres my advice
fuck the bigblock:theyre a waste of space unless your trying to make ALOT of power

and fuck crate engines: crate engines are way overpriced anyone with half a brain can build a motor with the power of a crate engine for half the price

build yourself a smallblock, you can build a budget 400 horse smallblock pretty easily with way less the weight of a bigblock and for waaaayyy less money than a crate engine
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Old 02-12-2012, 04:51 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks Dirty. I agree with the price of crate, I have overhauled a few engines but I think I'll leave this one to someone else. Local racer/mechanic that built the SB in my boat said he could get me 400 out of my 402 or a 350for $2000-$2500
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:11 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I tend to agree with the small block thing. With only 400hp desired, the BB is just going to be extra weight up front. You could get 400hp on a budget pretty easily with some 10.5:1 pistons, Vortec heads (or splurge and get some 180cc Iron Eagles) and a decent, mild cam.

If weight isn't an issue to you, isn't an issue for you then Tex may be onto something with just sprucing up your current engine and throwing in a few bells and whistles along the way that could free up some hidden hp.
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Old 02-12-2012, 07:18 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I personally would swap in a LS2 with a torque cam and be done, nice reliable fuel injected engine, reliable, no carb to screw with. Improved fuel consumption will be nice along with the ability when sized with the correct radiator to idle all day with the A/C blasting (I'd never own a mud truck w/o A/C).

Painless or Speartech can make the wiring harness for it, advanced adapters will have what you need to fit the trans.

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Old 02-12-2012, 11:18 AM   #10 (permalink)
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LS motors can get kinda costly, but yes can make some serious power, and water proofing a LS is very easy, but costly after u figure all the adaptors and wiring harness etc, it would nikle and dime u to death. is the motor u have a 4 bolt main? if so call kittlers and just throw some parts at it and rock on, if you drop off a motor to them on monday you'll be running it by friday and they give a one year warrenty
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Old 02-12-2012, 12:20 PM   #11 (permalink)
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402 compared with a 305? mmkay. interesting. If you don't like that 402 that much...let me have it!

Crate motors are overrated.....$3-4K budget? I think you can handle building what you've got for much cheaper than that. Hell, you could even build a killer 454/496 on that kind of cash. Or just do a 350 since everybody and their brother has one and a mere 400 hp is all you're looking for.

Just my buck-0-five.
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Old 02-12-2012, 01:20 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Yea Josh LS is out I'm defiantly staying carb due to my experience level with FI and newer engines. My motor is 2 bolt but I think staying under 450hp on that old BB it would hold up fine, I may end up having it built.
Haha I wasn't comparing the 402 directly to a 305. Just saying if you are going to lug around that extra 175lb why not have a larger displacement BB.
A 402 and 454 weight the same and take up the same amount of space, kind of like building up a 305 when you could have put a stock 350 in its place and got the same or more power.
I do like my 402 it's served me well and spun 40" boggers with 4.10 gears granted in deep mud I had to keep it in lo but with the right gears it would have been a beast.
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Old 02-12-2012, 05:04 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Ah, I see what you're saying. I've seen 454 blocks go for cheap on eBay. I know it would sound cooler to say "I've got a 454" instead of "I've got a 402" but at the end of the day, 400-450 hp is still 400-450 hp. I kinda get a kick out of saying I've got a 402 in my CJ, because most people (for some odd reason...LOL) are like "huh? What's a 402?" especially with mine being 600+ hp...its kicks some serious booty, if I don't say so myself.

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Old 02-14-2012, 09:44 AM   #14 (permalink)
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jegs has free shipping on crate motors right now, might want to check it out! might find just what your looking for.
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