Deep Breathing Induction
A carefully crafted induction system plays a major role in a successful engine build, and here Miller began with an Edelbrock Victor intake manifold with a 4500 Dominator base. As with the cylinder heads, the intake manifold was subject to development work and porting to maximize airflow and distribution-both major factors in the engine's overall flow system. Though the manifold carried a 4500 base, he settled on a 4150 carb to provide the mix. Rather than run an adapter or spacer to mate the carb with the manifold's bolt pattern, the carb was fitted with a special 4150 adapter base, which carries the 4500 bolt pattern for a bolt-on installation to the manifold. The Holley experts at the Carb Shop handled the requirements for the specialized "tuner" carb.
Another key area for power enhancement on this production-based engine is in the camshaft. Miller favors the use of COMP Cams' profiles, and here he chose a solid roller with a moderate duration in the mid 240-degree-at-.050 range, in an attempt to make power over the range from 2,500 to 6,500 rpm. Despite this relatively conservative duration specification, the fast-acting lobes of the custom camshaft deliver a stout level of valve lift (at .775/.730 inch with 1.6:1 ratio rockers). The high lift helps tap into the excellent high-lift flow of the modified cylinder head castings, and Miller worked in conjunction with COMP to develop the camshaft just for this engine combination. The camshaft works in a team with COMP roller lifters, springs, titanium retainers, and 10-degree SuperLocks. Harland Sharp roller rockers communicate the cam's motion to the valves.
Miller was poised to put on a good showing for Oldsmobile power in the 2006 Engine Masters Challenge; however, a fluke problem with the valvetrain eliminated the engine before it had a chance to really show its stuff. Even so, preliminary numbers in competition showed over 600 hp. Certainly, he would have liked to see the engine complete the competition, but ultimately it wasn't built specifically as a bullet for that event. As he tells PHR: "I built this engine to work in a real-world performance application, something that one of my customers could use." We say with that kind of power and torque on hand, this Oldsmobile really earns its "Rocket" moniker.