Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Madison, Alabama
Here's my two cents and I've built tons of engines in my day. Unless you are sold on a Big Block, stay away from them!! Here's what I have learned when it comes to BB Chevy's; there are those that are die hard fans and they Love them, and then there are those that really don't care. I am the latter and here's why:
1) With today's technology, you can get the same power, if not more, with a "Big" small block.
2) The cost difference is not justifiable. BB's are so expensive, and yes, I know first hand, as Jade as a 468BB in her that is a full Roller Motor.
3) Weight Difference. 200 lbs is on the low side. Most BB are probably around the area of 300-400 lbs more once you add the bigger intake, headers, valve covers... ect. Short blocks are probably closer to 200 lbs difference, but not complete turn key motors with everything bolted to them.
4) They are a pain in the @SS to work on once they are installed in your car. For example, changing header gaskets, spark plugs, removing the headers are all simple task IF you own a SB Chevy. I have to pull my entire engine if I want to remove my Driver Side Header.
5) Reliability. You can turn a small block a lot harder than you can a big block because of the rod length. Because of that, SB's normally will outlast a BB when it comes to mileage and maintenance.
If I were you, I would build a 400. You can do many things with that block from destroking it to 377 CI all the way to building a massive 454 CI monster. 400's run for ever, and you have best of both worlds; lots of power and tons of torque!! You can't beat that IMO.
I hope that helps man.