Golen/ERE396 #30 for WG

A high compression, high rpm 396 with LE ported TFS heads and LE Cam.

Custom ROSS pop-up piston from McKeown Motorsports Engineering

The motor started life as a strong running LT1-395 (396) originally built by Golen.  It has served well for many years in WG's Impala SS, (low 11's all natural).  Now WG want's to go up in RPM and make the motor more race and less street.  Compression is going up while we are at it.  The bottom-end was in great shape and the ring seal was excellent.  The only work needed then is a new balance for the crankshaft, new bearings, new cam, new pistons/rings...and careful re-assembly.  WG also bought a Pro Series mechanical roller valve train kit from me, (via Ai), which comes with Jesel shaft rockers, Morel lifters, Ai 3/8" pushrods.  And the oil system is being upgraded to the Titan gerotor oil pump with Stef's, (ERE-spec.), oil pan.

No matter what, I always install the stock LT1 windage tray which requires the use of  longer Milodon main studs.  A little bit of windage protection is better than no windage protection.

Standard size Clevite H-series bearings in all journals except #1 which has a mix of .001" and standard.

A photo of the nice Ultradyne billet camshaft, (mechanical roller), from Lloyd Elliott.

Cam in, bottom assembled.  The crank and rods are Eagle brand which are being re-used from the original rotating assembly. 

One thing I usually don't check, but must in this case, is piston-to-valve clearance.  Also I need to check to see if the dome of the piston hits the combustion chamber or cylinder head in any other spot.

FelPro head gasket on, heads torqued, rocker pair installed, (.018" lash).

I had about .150" intake and .250" exhaust clearance and no piston to head issues.

The oil pump was set to 65psig at the Titan factory but I turned the regulator screw in 3 turns which should give 70 to 80 psig.

I spent a whole day clearancing the oil pan to the rods and the windage tray.

I bolted the pan on without gasket and looked for marks where the rods hit and then buffed the area with a grinder.  Then cleaned the pan, re-installed, and checked again.

Right Stuff RTV on both sides of the oil pan gasket.

Fel Pro head gasket

One head on and valve train installed.

Both heads on.  ARP head bolts being re-used from the original motor.

Jesel rockers installed and oil pre-lube until oil comes out all 16 pushrods/rockers.

At 2500rpm the oil pump makes 62 psig which is right where I expected.

Motor is ready for delivery.  Nothing more to do until the GM LT4 intake manifold gaskets get there.

One final photo.

New GM LT4 intake manifold gaskets.

Nice new Locar locking dipstick.

Wrapped and ready for delivery to WG

Rear main seal replaced.

6-7-09:  Delivered

WG and Nabil Guffy:  Nab gave the stock PCM a good tune and looked over the wiring of the LTCC.  WG installed the motor and wired everything up.  Good job by both.

Nice looking oil pan.  It's hard to keep them from leaking though.  Quite a pain the the butt.

Nabil with the garage attack kitty.  Nabil said the motor started on 1st crank and idled well.  The cam and heads are designed for high rpm but the stock PCM is going to hold it back a bit.  Hope to see it run down the track soon.

www.Karl-Ellwein.org 2009, Ellwein Engines 2009, , email Karl Ellwein