Bottom End Rebuild (S05E04)

Chris Duke shows you how to rebuild the bottom end of a Chevy 350 V8 small block engine, featuring products from MAHLE Motorsports and Eagle Specialty Products.

Episode Links

AMP Research
MAHLE Motorsports
Eagle Specialty Products

Partz Mentions

XS Power
Holley Performance Products

Episode Notes

Our small block engine rebuild series continues! With the teardown and machine shop episodes out of the way, we can now start rebuilding our block. In this episode Chris shows you how to rebuild the bottom end of our block using pistons from MAHLE Motorsports, and a crank from Eagle Specialty Products.

This episode features our regular segments, Partz and Letterz. In “Partz”, Chris talks about dead blow hammers from Craftsman, XS Power batteries, Holley M/T polished aluminum valve covers.and Dupli-Color engine enamel paint.

As always, be sure to stick around to watch our out-takes at the very end!


This episode features an original Motorz theme song by Jeremy Pritchard.

  1. The machine shop can burn all the paint off and install the cam bearings which is a much better way to do it. Also use brass freeze plugs.

  2. GM built over 40 million GEN 1 small blocks. Ford and Chrysler made millions of their own versions. These are the easiest engines to rebuild. Add a aluminum cylinder head/Camshaft/Intake combo from your favorite company etc on any of those engines and you get around 300Hp at the flywheel. Revisiting a theme here for the past forty years.Next GEN V8’s from the Big Three above, and you get Electronic engine management with MP injection and variable valve timing Hint The New V6 in the recent Camaro’s[not even the SS, just base model] has more HP than this 1970 LT-1 350 this man is building

  3. Old school motors are getting lame. I grew up with the stuff you see on Barret’s for sale for forty grand plus. Yes they were fast for their day…….400 Horsepower screaming metal deathtraps with drum brakes weighing 4000 pounds on bias ply 78 series tires………We are lucky to have survived what we drove.Sitting on the side of the road with percolating carbs on a 100 degree or heat soaked starter solenoids, and then there was the searching to find pump gas for 10:1 compression[Or more] for an engine without knock sensors and computer controlled timing. They are not as great as people remember. $100.00 Dayton All Season radials perform better than the red stripe or M/T performance tires of that era. Old classic=Money pit. She is a steel vampire.

  4. In reply to Chevyman5436: And anyone else wishing to learn. The “Freeze plugs” are actually part of the engine block casting process from the sand mold This is where the molten iron is actually introduced and the “holes” are left over after casting. Solution: Drive a “welch” plug into it to seal the water jacket. If you wish you CAN run water in an engine: The downsides are: Water boils at 212 Fahrenheit. A mix of low mineral content water [distilled or deionized] and Glycol type low silica coolant increases the boiling point well above 212 and has additives to reduce corrosion. Frozen water DOES expand: Popping out the welch plugs because they ARE the weak point. If you have ever removed heads from an engine suffering extended abuse of no glycol coolant, expect the factory steel shim head gaskets to have rusted the heads and block together as a unit. Solution: Thor god of Thunder application with 4lb hammer and four foot length of 1-1/4″ pipe. Just be very careful cursing the owner between hammer blows.

  5. what would i have to change if i swap my chevy s10s 2.8L v6 for a 350 v8 small block? would i have to do anything for the tranny? or computer, wiring harness etc?

  6. Did you all have the rotating assembly balanced? I have a 383 stroker project im working on, and would love to hear your input. Scat crank, scat rods and wiseco pistons…whats your take?

  7. OK, at the 6:30 mark, you start talking about the crankshaft “end play” after whapping it with a mallet. So what happens IF the ‘end resulting measurments’ are bad, one way or another? (Too close, and/or Too wide) ?Nobody explains that issue…NOBODY! What’s the fix?And it pisses me off!

  8. Freeze plugs aren’t – they are core plugs – and they are not where the molten metal is introduced – they are where the inner sand core is supported and later cleaned out when the casting is made.

  9. leave the cam bearing install to the machine shop guys for sure :) I even will have them fit my pistons to the rods. Those parts in particular are often too expensive to mess up!

  10. Any body know what the name of those pistons are called? I know mahle but I cant find them anywhere and I think if someone knew what to look up that it would really help me find them.

  11. Do you write a list of every tool you’ll need in a comment? Also where do you buy the Mahle power kit from the actual Mahle website or some other outlet store?

  12. thats all wonderful but no plastagauge to check tolerance no oil on rings or wrist pins dont offset rear main i dont use that molly cam lobe grease on anything but cam lobes and i will never wear gloves while building a engine ya cant feel grit ol boy couldnt work at my shop i prime every engine built no lube under head bolts those two clean dry surfaces play hell with torque readings after torquin head and main bolts take a fat ass puntch and a 2 pound hammer and give the bolt heads a good wrap then re chech readings it just helps everyone kinda relax but hay i guess if ya trust everyone to do a perfect job everythings ok but i would rather know what my bearing tollerances are perfect world or not

  13. I agree Terry. Clean it before all the machining. #2, if you’re going to do this process, why not start with a 4 bolt?

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