Big-Block Mopar Engine - Pump Gas Thumper
From the February, 2009 issue of Popular Hot Rodding
By Marko Radielovic
Photography by Indy Cylinder Head
In a world where technology has brought us overhead cams, veritable cam timing, high-powered, small-inch, "efficient" engines, factory offerings with over 10:1 compression made to run on pump fuel, and a whole slew of other titillating innovations, it's nice to see that cubic inches are still the way to make big power and huge torque. But what if you equipped your big-inch monster with one modern concession? What would it be? How about a 542ci, pump-gas swilling, aluminum-headed, asphalt buckler with fuel injection? Imagine no cold-start issues and unparalleled drivability. Now imagine 665 lb.-ft. of torque at a mere 4,500 rpm and 624 eager horses at a low 5,100 rpm! The kicker? All that is available on 87-octane pump dribble.
This Indy Cylinder Head/Milodon-built wonder is the perfect recipe for a modern street engine. With enough torque to turn the Earth on its axis, the convenience of fuel injection, and the ability to run all-day-long on the worst possible gas, we would say that Indy scored a home run, a field goal, and a knockout. All we know is that this is the wave of the future with enough oats to push even a cruise liner into the 10s.
What happens when Indy Cylinder...
What happens when Indy Cylinder heads and Milodon combine to build an engine? You get 625 hp on 87-octane gas. What's more, it happens under 5,500 rpm.
We know that CNC porting guarantees...
We know that CNC porting guarantees consistency, but CNC machining the block? All blocks at Indy Cylinder Heads are CNC machined. Everything is located from dowel positions. This MP mega block is bored, stroke clearanced, and lightened. This particular engine received a partial lightening, which means the motor mounts were left in place (the owner did not want to run a motor plate). A full race lightening can remove up to 40 pounds of cast iron. Consider this exercise the Atkins diet of block preparation.
Here the MP Mega Block is...
Here the MP Mega Block is prepped and ready to fill with speed parts.
A mild Comp Cams hydraulic...
A mild Comp Cams hydraulic bumpstick was chosen to actuate the valves. This particular cam was spec'd for torque, maintenance-free operation, and street manners, featuring .546/.546-inch lift and 241/247-degrees of duration at .050-inch valve lift, and a wide 112-degrees lobe separation angle. It was installed at 108 degrees to boost the already fat low-end torque curve.
A 112 LSA was specified to...
A 112 LSA was specified to smooth out the idle and help fight surging, a common malady of EFI engines. It also broadens the power band on large-cube engines.
A Milodon true roller timing...
A Milodon true roller timing set was pressed into service, and a complete engine bolt kit made cleaning and reusing old fasteners obsolete.
In today's high-tech world,...
In today's high-tech world, CNC porting is the only way to ensure uniformity from port to port. Every port and chamber is identical. These 440/SR heads are equipped with 2.19/1.81 valves, 75cc chambers, and an intake port measuring 295 cc flowing a whopping 355 cfm. This is the smallest wedge head in Indy's arsenal.
The CNC-ported 440 S/R heads...
The CNC-ported 440 S/R heads have the stock exhaust pattern, but raised exhaust ports. Some headers will fit, but it's best to buy headers that were designed with this feature in mind, such as those from tti.
The 440 S/R CNC-ported head...
The 440 S/R CNC-ported head has Max Wedge-size intake port openings. They will correctly mate to the 440-2 single-plane intake, which can be ordered EFI ready or with the provisions to run a carburetor--the choice is yours.
This 4.5-inch stroke Crower...
This 4.5-inch stroke Crower crank is made from 4340 steel and will purportedly handle in an excess of 2,000 hp. While it's overkill, we like the piece of mind it has purchased. The bulletproof Crower piece utilizes standard 2.375 Mopar rod journals and an 8-bolt flywheel flange.
Don't build another wedge...
Don't build another wedge or Hemi without this gem. This is a billet rear main seal retainer from Indy, made on a CNC machine...
...It has exact dimensions...
...It has exact dimensions to clamp the seal properly and uses two O-rings on each side for end seals instead of paper ones.
Naturally, a Milodon 30930...
Naturally, a Milodon 30930 street/strip oil pan, their big stroke windage tray, high-volume oil pump with pump cover, static pickup, and adjustable relief valve ensure reliable lubrication. We cannot over emphasize the importance of a good oiling system--particularly in a high-horsepower application such as this.
When you use a big stroke,...
When you use a big stroke, you can't use the internal pickup anymore as space is limited, so an external system is needed. Everyone thinks of a full race system when you say that, but this is a nice little package. The external system comes out the side of the pump cover instead of the back. You just loop the line around the K frame, and you can still use motor mounts. It's so simple.
Ross forged pistons were chosen...
Ross forged pistons were chosen for their light weight, strength, and quality. This setup used the manufacturer recommended street clearances, a 4.380 bore, 1.460 compression height, .990-inch wrist pin, and a 40cc dish. The Crower rods are 4340 steel, 7.00-inches center to center, and will take nearly any punishment thrown their way. Rods are one area where you do not want to skimp.
One look at the big 40cc dish...
One look at the big 40cc dish and you'd think it's too much, and better for a blower or turbo application. But this is a big engine, and we only wanted a 9.5:1 compression ratio.
Piston volume was checked...
Piston volume was checked to ensure that we had done our homework right. Since this engine will be fed a steady diet of sub-par California unleaded fuel, the compression ratio was kept on the low side, squeezing a 9.5:1 ratio.
Indy 440-4 S/R roller rockers...
Indy 440-4 S/R roller rockers are 1.5 ratio, come with side spacers, and they work with 440-14 chrome rocker shafts...
...This is a very strong system...
...This is a very strong system and is capped off by 440-11 rocker studs, nuts, washers, and 440-5C billet hold-down clamps.
Now the short-block is ready...
Now the short-block is ready to receive the heads. The cast valley plate seals to the cylinder heads and block with silicone, and uses paper gaskets between the intake and head ports--no more tin valley pans.
This is the Accel/DFI GenVII...
This is the Accel/DFI GenVII fuel injection kit with the ECU, wire harness, fuel injectors, and all of the necessary sensors. The most important part is the dual sync distributor, which acts as a crank and cam sensor; normally not found on your old 440.
The Indy 440-2 intake can...
The Indy 440-2 intake can be bought EFI ready, which is machined for injectors and fuel rails installed. Here you see it completely outfitted with a 1,000-cfm air valve (throttle body), 36-pound injectors, a rail-mounted pressure regular, and fully plumbed.
To top the whole thing off,...
To top the whole thing off, this is the 440-7 logo valve cover made from cast aluminum. We also installed breathers and baffles.
Get used to it. this is the...
Get used to it. this is the way your '60s-style Mopar wedge engines will look in the 21st century. As long as they run like this one, you shouldn't have any issues!
*MP wedge Siamese mega-block
*4.380 bore/4.500 stroke block lightened, but motor mounts left on
*Crower 4340 crank - 4.500 stroke - 2.375 rod journal
*Clevite main bearings MS1795V std
*Clevite rod bearings CB 527HD std
*Crower 4340 rods 7.00 center to center - with .990 wrist pin
*Ross forged pistons 4.380 bore - 1.460 compression height - 40cc dish
*Speed pro rings R9278+65 1/16 1/16 3/16 top gap .022 bottom .028
*Comp Cams hydraulic cam CRB 5965-5985 H-112.546/.546 - 241/247 - 112 degree LSA - installed at 108
*Comp Cams 822-16 lifters
*Milodon true roller chain set
*Milodon complete engine bolt kit
*MP chrome timing cover
*Indy 440/SR aluminum wedge heads CNC-ported 295cc intake runner 2.19/1.81 stainless valves intake flow 355 CFM exhaust flow 266 CFM combustion chamber 75 cc
*Comp 924-16 valvesprings, 10-degree locks, chrome moly retainers, Teflon seals
*9.5:1 compression ratio
*Indy 440-4S/R roller rockers 1.5 ratio
*Indy 440-14 rocker shafts, 440-11 clamp studs, 440-5c billet hold downs
*Indy 440-17 head studs, 440-9 3/8 chromoly pushrods 9.500 long
*Indy 440-7 Logo valve covers with breathers and baffles installed
*Felpro 1009 head gaskets, Indy #216 intake gaskets
*Milodon 30930 oil pan
*Milodon big-stroke windage tray
*Milodon static pickup
*Milodon high-volume oil pump with aluminum pump cover for spin on filter
*MSD pro series plug wires
*Indy 440-30 EFI ready intake manifold with rails mounted
*Accel/DFI Gen V11 fuel injection with 1000 CFM air valve and dual sync distributor
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