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Edelbrock 4bbl tuning, 360, dual plane, manifolds not headers


FBBO Gold Member
FBBO Gold Member
Local time
3:58 AM
Dec 3, 2020
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western Maryland
So, I've 'resurrected' my '72 Satellite project - new fuel tank, new carburetor, bled the brakes, new air shocks, and got the carb dialed in enough to get 'er running.


Starts fine dead-cold. Runs fine dead-cold.

Starts fine fully hot (i.e. after a quick run into the hardware store, to get white lithium grease - I can reach through the window, turn the key, and it lights immediately). Runs fine fully hot.

In between...it's a bitch. The warm-up process has something not right. I can drive it a half mile or so from cold-start/idle-warmup. Shifts to second, no problem. Shifts to drive...bogs....dies...doesn't want to restart unless I pull the filter off, open the choke plate by hand, let it sit for a minute to air out the fuel, and it will start with my foot half on the throttle.

Carb is an Edelbrock 600, electric choke (1406, I think), and I believe it to be stock internally. Bought here as a clean used unit; disassembled enough to make sure "no gunk", and put 'er on. Yesterday, I rotated the choke about 45 degrees toward "lean"...after all this happened. So, I haven't had a chance to do a heat-cycle drive to see if that made it better or worse, but I'm thinking the choke is staying engaged too long, it's flooding out during the warmup process, and once it's fully warm and the choke stays off, it does OK.

I set the idle mix screws per the manual and it idles nicely hot or cold. Speed sounds right, but no tach installed yet because I haven't found a decent Sun to put in, like I had back in the day.

It's a 360 LA motor, Edelbrock dual plane intake, MSD 6AL, and exhaust manifolds not headers, feeding 3" duals with flowmasters. I honestly don't know the cam or compression specs; it's the engine that was in the car when I bought it back years ago (long story) and I wasn't the one who built it. Runs well enough. I just want to get it dialed in best I can. I've run Edelbrocks in the past and never really had any issues with them once I get them set up, but this one is acting like it wants more than the usual "set idle and go" process. Anyone have any input as to what needles/jets/etc should be good starting points for a setup like this (smallblock in a big heavy car)? Running down the road with the back window part-open (rear window on a wagon opens with a crank), I can tell/smell it's a little rich overall, but the plugs don't read hateful. No pinging at WFO, and with the line lock it'll do a nice first-and-second gear burnout before it loses steam. I just want to get it tuned the best I can, so anyone with experience tuning these things (and it'll be old-school, plug-reading "tuning" since I don't have any a/f sniffers in the exhaust - hell, I don't even have a tach back in it yet! yesterday was the first time it's been more than a half mile from home in a dozen years!), please feel free to chime in! The rest of the car is a 727 trans, unknown converter (seems stock to me; not even as much 'slack' as a 2400 stall I ran years ago) and 489-case 8-3/4 rear with 4.10 SG (for now; it'll be going back to 3.23 soon so I have some highway legs back).

A quick test if you think you are running rich. Remove the springs under the metering rod pistons. At this time BEFORE removing the springs check to see if the pistons move up and down freely. If so with the springs removed,pistons and rods re-inserted take the car for a ride and see how it reacts. Doing this will lean out the mixture.If worse then it isn't over rich.This is easier than removing the air horn and changing jets.This is just a start.
All my old cars exhaust stink with today's fuel and during the winter months we have what is known as "winter blend." You are on the other side of the country so I'm not sure what goes on there.
Getting back to the carb when the pistons are removed the metering rods may have 2 steps or 3 steps to them. Usually the factory rods have 2 and should be marked using a magnifying glass to be seen. A Edelbrock kit for a 600 1406 is a good investment.Multiple jets and metering rods and thin or thicker springs.
That way you can dial in the best settings for your area. 1406 out of the box have been know for off idle bog,mid range surge.
Also check your timing you may have to bump up a few degrees. I am using a 1406 on my 318 that had the above problems. The metering rod changes, the springs and timing took care of my issues.My 2 cents.
Choke operation might be questionable.
Try this: warm up engine so that choke is not needed. Use wire/whatever to tie choke flap in a vertical position. Test drive. If ok, you have a choke/adjustment issue.
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