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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
picked up a pretty sharp nova recently but not alot of history to go with it. basically an undocumented nova ss 396. good recent restoration with what appears to be a mid 70's 454 as per block codes. the rear is a corporate 8.5 and curious if that was a bolt on for a nova. I recently sold a chevelle I built that payed for this nicely done complete car. Im not big on clones but I like the freedom of personalizing a car with mods with out worrying about originality.

Ill ask more questions as I dig deeper into it.

thanks
 

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Factory SS 396 shipped with a 12 bolt in 1970, the ten bolt before '72 was a 8.2". Other clues as to authenticity would be to measure were the block sits in the engine bay (if centered it is still using the SBC motor mount chassis pedestals, offset an inch to the passenger side and it has the correct BBC ones); also the fuel line will be 5/16th ID for a SBC and 3/8th ID for the BBC. four core radiator came with all big blocks unless the car has A/C which also used the four core. Big blocks also used the 11" clutch with a 168 tooth flywheel (or flexplate) which has the bolts staggered on the starter. The smaller 153 tooth flywheel used with small blocks has the bolts across from each other.

There is a different heater core for a big block, big blocks only shipped with the TH400 not a TH350, and the cowl tag numbers have to match etc. Unless sold as a numbers matching BBC SS I would just sit back and enjoy the ride. And if you need help making it more radical a ride drop me a line because I firmly believe you can never have too much power under the hood.


Big Dave
 

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The 8.5 10 bolt is a good rear end if built right. If you have a '70 car then the 8.5 would have been swapped from another car. You can upgrade this rear end to 30 spline axles and posi to make it stronger. The plug welds in the axle tubes are pretty bad on these rear ends and can break under pressure. This allows the center of the rear end to rotate up and poke the drive shaft through the floor. If you plan on driving hard with sticky tires then I recommend fully welding the axle tubes. This needs to be done by someone who is good at welding cast iron.
 

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I just bought a built Nova with the following specs:
8.5 “ 10 bolt
Richmond 4:10 gears w/ new seals and bearings
HD GM posi-traction
HD Dutchman 30 spline axles w/ ½ “ wheel studs
It seems to be holding up quite well to hard launches with a 450HP stroker motor and 700R4 tranny with converter and shift kit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ill find out this Saturday at a Chevelle get together on the 1/8th how mine behaves. Sound of the cam in this 454ci Im guessing low 400hp range and good torque 500 or so. Never thought I would buy a car with so little history but so far its been a plus in every dept. When the planets line up right and get a full day to myself Im going to pull covers etc and determine whats inside. Then weigh it. Then the Dynojet.
 
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