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Building my first stroker

This is a discussion on Building my first stroker within the LT1 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; Building my first stroker motor to go in my 79 Malibu 6spd. I scored a used 396 lt1 that needed ...

  1. #1
    Member kensz28's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008

    1979 MALIBU, SBC T56.

    Building my first stroker

    Building my first stroker motor to go in my 79 Malibu 6spd. I scored a used 396 lt1 that needed rebuilding.It was low mileage since being built and the guys wife ran pump gas in the car and broke the lands off 4 srp forged pistons. It was a 13.5:1 motor so that didn't work out to well. I got it for $700 complete minus cam and harnes/ecu plus other small stuff.What I did get was an Eagle steel crank, h beam rods and a new set of probe forged pistons. They won't work due to a short compression height so I got some wiseco ones to go in. Short block is done and assembled. It's been torque plate honed, line bored and fully balanced and blueprinted. Set me back $1500 with the new pistons. All new bearings as well. Blocks been filled to the freeze plugs. Anyhow, I need some cam suggestions. I will be at roughly 12:1 on this motor, my buddy has seen 13:1 lt1s on pump gas before. I have a gas station here selling ethanol free gas and I plan on using that. I read a cam with a longer duration will help bleed some pressure off. Is that true?. Any ideas are helpful. I have a daily driver lt1 car so I'm no stranger. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    pajeff02's Avatar
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    Feb 2009
    Mansfield, PA

    Black & Blue
    '02 WS.6 / '07 Suburban

    With that high of compression, you will want to carefully monitor the engine for knock and bring the tune up in increments to the edge of knock and then back it down. Modern engines can safely make it to up to around 11.5:1 on pump gas, but have engine controls and cylinder head designs that allow this. On an older school engine like an LT series, I would be very careful on pump gas pushing it to the limits. Ethanol is actually more knock resistant than gasoline, but it takes a greater volume of fuel to achieve the same power as gasoline since it has a much different stoichiometric ratio. Also keep in mind that you have to tune for your fuel as well... higher octane fuels require additional spark advance in order to time the peak cylinder pressure event correctly.

    As a side note, you will have one badass 'Boo when you get it all put together.

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