Build Engine

Engine Tear Down

"F 440" = a 1970 model 440 block
"10 8" says the block was built Oct 8 1969.
If the number "2" was stamped closer to the month day codes, then it would mean this was the 2nd block built that day, however, the wide spacing indicates the block was built during the 2nd shift.
I can't find any information on the letter "C". It could mean low compression except that is usually stamped "LC" or just "L". The right side up C looks to have the same weight and font as the rest of the coding. The upside down C was really hammered in and I have no idea what it indicates.
Paul missed taking a picture of the block lower VIN pad so he took this picture later, after the ngine was built and painteds. It reads "0D142696"
Block casting number 2536430 core revision 9 dated 25 July 1968. The original core started out as 2536430 and cast many blocks before wear caused production blocks to start approaching the edge of acceptable tolerances. At that point the core is refurbished, a revision number is appended to the casting number and a revision date is added. This engine was cast using a core made 25 July 1968 and was the 9th revision. This is not the date the block was cast, it is the date the mold used to cast the block was made.

Driver's side.
View from below.
Passenger's side.

Paul's long time friend, machinist Tom Carter is the owner of Carter Automotive in Athol. Tom is a first class machinist and Paul sends him all of his engine work. Everything is loaded and ready for delivery to to Tom who will start by measuring everything to see where the "taxi build" has left me. Hopefully the block is usable since it would be a real shame to lose the most important numbers matching part of the car. I’m also a little worried the “Taxi Job” done years ago in Calgary has not screwed up the bores.

Engine Machining is Complete!

The good news, the block is usable, the not so good news, Tom had to bore the cylinders out 0.040" to get each round and taper free. This poor block has suffered since birth, Wed 8 October 1969. I don't know, is a "Wed" a bad day on the production line? I always thought Mon and Fri were bad as well as a Tue following a long week end. At about 23K miles it began using oil at the rate of a quart per tank of fuel. Chrysler warranty covered the repairs which included rings, rod bearings, valve seals, an oil pump and pistons #1, #5 and #7. The dealer mumbled something about "new" experimental nickle chrome rings that failed to seat during break in. Sounded to me like marketing BS, but I didn't much care why as long as they fixed it. I should have screamed new engine, but unfortunately I was far too busy finishing my last year of Engineering at Queens’ University to worry much about the car.

In 1999 when Doug, the "Fury nut", pulled the engine apart he noticed the rods, which had been stamped 1 thru 8 had not been installed in the right order. This error also had the associated pistons in the wrong holes. This may not have made a difference since both the rod bearings the rings were new. He also found some cylinder walls still showed signs of a course cross hatching done nearly 75K mile ago which indicates the cylinder was never round. I'm guessing pistons #1, #5 and #7 were replaced because the skirts were gouging the heck out of the cylinder walls. That gouging is what forced the 0.040" boring job to get them round again. Two of the crank main bearing caps were also reversed, so it looks like Chrysler may have also pulled the crank for reasons unknown. I wonder if the crank was actually replaced because of rod bearing damage. I always wondered why poorly seated rings would force new rod bearings and replacement of the oil pump. I suspect I was lucky it didn’t blow. Then to top it all off, Chrysler installed the oil pan gasket wrong. The gasket at the rear slid out from under the pan leaving an opening to the world. No wonder it continued to lose oil after the rebuild. The same idiots broke the grade 8 bolt holding the alternator to the passenger side head and replaced it with a grade 5. This bolt quickly sheared off flush with the head and the head had to be pulled so a machine shop could extract the broken stud. Quality control and mechanic training was pretty bad those days.

Then in 2000 the local speed shop did their "taxi" build.

So I’m not surprised with a 0.040" over bore, I am however a little concerned about core shift in the casting and how uniform my cylinders are centered within the wall material. Fortunately two schools of thought exist on how much is too much. One school says 0.040” max and the other says 0.060" max. While 0.060" seems drastic, many builders use that limit and that makes my 0.040” easier to accept. In any case I will take the chance and retain my numbers matching block. If it decides to blow a side wall I can ponder having a sleave installed.

Over all my build will be pretty mild so I don’t expect I’ll be pushing the engine hard enough to break anything.

The crank mains and rod journals were cleaned up with a 0.010” resizing, pretty standard stuff. The head exhaust valve seats were fitted with hardened seats. The "taxi builder" took 0.010" off the block surface so nothing further was required. The heads both were good so the decks were just cleaned. So, the block is good to go and should produce a strong engine.
The heads were cleaned and received new valve seats, new valves along with retainers, seals, springs, hydraulic lifters and push rods. Some of these parts were included in the Edelbrock 2192 - Edelbrock Performer-Plus Camshaft Kit.

  • Chrysler 383/400/440
  • .420''/.442'' Lift
  • 270°/280° Adv. Duration
  • Idle-5500 RPM Range

Bores, left #1 and #3, right #5 and #7.

Bores, left #8 and #6, right #4 and #2.

Crank shaft, all journals ground 0.010"

Engine Build

Prior to an engine build, Paul lays out all the components and his tools much like a surgeon. Organization and a squeaky clean work space impresses me so that I feel very comfortable letting Paul build my engine. Shops with parts spread helter skelter on grungy benches surrounded by years of crap radiate the impression of a sloppy, messy and disorganized mechanic who will most likely screw things up and rip me off.

So what did we buy?

  • Silvolite Piston 1263 - 7.2L Chrysler (V8) 1966-71
  • Hastings 692 40 over ring set
  • Clevite 77 P Series Main Bearings -.010 - MS-877P-10
  • Clevite Chrysler P Series Rod Bearings -.010 - CB-527P-10
  • ARP engine bolts.

  • Edelbrock 2192 - Edelbrock Performer-Plus Camshaft Kit
  • Edelbrock 7804 - Edelbrock Performer-Link Timing Chain Set
  • Fel-Pro FS7891PT11 - 440 Engine Gasket Kit

  • Edelbrock 2191 - Edelbrock Performer Manifold
  • Fel-Pro 1215 - Valley Pan Gasket w/ Blocked Heat Crossover and Four Facing Pieces
  • Fel-Pro 1218 - Fel-Pro Intake Manifold Gaskets
  • JEGS Intake Manifold Bolts #555-83200

  • Edelbrock 1411 - Edelbrock 750 cfm Performer Carburetor (I bought used in 2007)

Clevite 77 P Series Main Bearings
-.010 - MS-877P-10
Clevite Chrysler P Series Rod Bearings
-.010 - CB-527P-10
Hastings 692
40 over ring set

Factory "906" heads.

Shop Manual
.015" to .055"
Shop Manual
.000" to .005" max

Shop Manual
.013" to .023"
Shop Manual
.0015" to .0030"


Look a tad tighter than 0.002"

Shop Manual
Diametral clearance desired .0005" to .0015"
Diametral clearance max .0025"


Look to be between 0.0015" and 0.002"

Shop Manual
Desired .001" to .002"
Maximum .0025"

Fill the holes!

Notches to the front!

Organize cam parts and install.
Line up the timing chain dots.
Cam and timing chain installed.

Get all the bolt on parts squeaky clean and ready to install.

Assemble rocker arms
Install the heads, passenger side
Driver's side.

Organize the pan, bolts and gasket.
Install oil pickup and do a final check.
Close the bottom end.

The factory painted the engine Turquoise, which Paul and I didn't like very much so We decided to switch to Hemi Orange instead.
New high volume oil pump.
Start painting bolt on parts.

Spark plug heat shield.
Tap and bolt plug heat riser pivot holes.
Fit the passenger side 2806900 HP manifold.

Spark plug heat shield.
Fit driver side 2951216 HP manifold.
Need to make a stove.

Motor mounts

Paul readily admits he can't weld worth a damn so all cut and paste metal work gets farmed out to his neighbour who has done metal fabrication for years and does excellent work. Paul asked him to design a nice looking stove to fit the 2951216 manifold. The result is a work of art!

Time to mount the engine and trnsmission back on the front clip and then attach all the rest of the engine goodies!

The factory air cleaner was painted crinkle black. Paul asked if I was willing to change colors and I thought about it before deciding, why not. If the results came out less than spectacular its easy to repaint. I admit, when I first saw the result I wasn't so sure I liked it or not but it's growing on me.

Eye Candy!

Looks great from all angles!

It's too bad it has to be hidden from view, some what like wrapping a super model in a blanket!

Consider these pictures to be center-fold peeks under the blanket!!

I love it - where do I sit and where is the throttle!