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Re-Rebuilding the 440-493 in a 1970 Charger

The hood probably weighs over 100 lbs when you include the hinges. You have that spoiler out back and huge rear tires. You also have a 518 too, right? That has to weigh more than the 727.
The 5 speed swap resulted in a 20 lb loss from the 727.
Yes 518 & it is VERY heavy ,the wing is hollow alum, but still heavy not sure but 50lbs easy, the wheels & tires are very light for the size , also a heavy D60 , also it has A/C
The brakes feel fine, they stop fine but for some reason, they just don't amaze me. I don't ever feel as if I need to lift off the pedal to keep from skidding or simply slowing faster than I want.
I feel your pain vicariously and am hoping you get it figured out. Threshold braking was the fastest way to stop a car before ABS came onto the scene, but it still requires that the car has the ability to lock the wheels under maximum braking pressure. If it can't lock the wheels, you really can't know for sure how much braking you're leaving on the table. Wish I had some good advice, but I don't.
If it can't lock the wheels, you really can't know for sure how much braking you're leaving on the table.
That is the key point that I am making, thank you.
I want to be able to exceed the limit and then decide for myself as to how far I want to go with it.
Right now it feels like I have a rev limiter set to 4500 rpms on an engine that should be able to reach 6000.
I had Shelby tires and wheels on a plain 90 Daytona for awhile. Was really hammering on the brakes one night and ripped one of the linings from the pad backing on the front.
Too much tire for the brakes.
Alignment day!
The last alignment was in 2013. I didn't hit any curbs or jumped the car but with the engine and K member out, I did change to 11/16" tie rod ends and sleeves. The Borgeson steering box swap should not have changed the alignment at all but the change from Fast Ratio arms to regular may have affected the toe by a slight amount.
Before I divulge the specs, I have a little bit of background.
In most of the Mopars that I have owned and read about, getting a lot of caster is difficult even in cars without bent parts or previous damage. Caster really helps stability.
I asked the man to set it to .75 degree of NEGative camber, 1/8" toe IN and as much caster as possible.
The last time, he was able to get barely over 4 degrees of caster. This time he got 5 on the left and 5.5 on the right.
This is with stock upper control arms but with the Moog K-7103 offset UCA bushings.

Moog offset.jpg

This is the most caster that I have ever heard of with stock parts.
The car drives great. It tracks straight, stops straight and has no wander. It rides smoother over bumps. He didn't provide a computerized printout because he aligned it the the old fashioned way. The manager said he couldn't get the gauges to attach to the rear wheels so it had to be done by hand. I'd complain if the car tracked weird or pulled to one side but it feels fine.
The brakes actually feel better too. Before the alignment, the car wanted to wander in hard braking which made it hard to get a good assessment of the ability. I'm probably chasing an impossible goal with the brakes but what the hell....I'm retired and I like to tinker on stuff.
Is 1/8" toe in too much? I seem to recall we should keep it to around 1/32" toe in.

KD - after a few days/weeks of driving, put that car on your lift and do a visual inspection of the front suspension to make sure all is still well. I have aftermarket Firm Feel UCA's and had a local well respected shop do an alignment on my car one time when my normal shop was busy. They achieved 5.5 deg positive caster. I was like WOW! A few months later I had a strange issue my buddy felt when taking a test drive. Upon inspection, we both visually noticed one side of my front suspension was wrong. It turned out to achieve that 5.5 deg positive caster that shop had somehow tightened things incorrectly and I think I recall something else was loose (I run a sector support and they didn't tighten it back up). I had to have alignment done again the correct way and my max is now + 4.5 deg positive caster. If I don't do something myself, I check every single shop's work now - it's happened to me more than once.
I went on a 100 mile drive today. The wife wanted to meet up with some friends to do some wine tasting. (Wine drinking) I wanted to take the car out to see how it would do in some hills, some higher elevation, curvy roads and steep declines.
I find it amazing that a man can have a car apart in hundreds of pieces and within a short time, he can have it back together and running.
The Tremec feels fine but does have some vibrations in 4th and 5th that are not evident in the lower gears. I'm still annoyed a bit with how a downshift from 5th to 4th feels like I could actually engage reverse if I don't move the shifter to the right enough before pulling it back. It seems that in forward movement, there should be a blocker of some sort over the reverse gate.
The brakes feel decent but still not enough for me to consider them finished. The pedal travel has increased a bit since I did the last work on them. They bite but the pedal sinks further than I'd prefer. The booster has a rod with an adjustable nub on the end that can be unscrewed to close up the dead travel:


Currently, mine is bottomed out and could be extended to close the gap a bit but since I can't seem to leave this alone, I'm wondering if this single diaphragm 8 3/4" booster is enough for the system and weight of the car.
66-70 B body cars used this style booster:

PST booster.jpg

Dual diaphragm for double the assist. I interpret this to mean less effort needed to stop as compared to the single diaphragm booster OR greater stopping force using the same pedal pressure.

Maybe those big tires grip so much they over power the brakes. Try some narrower tires. Maybe put 50/6o psi for a try out? Check max psi of tires.

This is a good idea but with the larger front rotors, I'd need at least a 16" front wheel, maybe a 17". I don't have any spare wheels that size. I could put skinny 15" wheels on the rear just to see if I can get the rears to skid!
glad to see you did a shakedown drive. 100 miles is a good one!

How was the Borgeson steering?

On your brake pedal travel / feel - I really think you should try adding a 2psi residual valve for the fronts and report back. More than one FBBO member has reported good results with this (even though most advice says not needed unless the MC is below the caliper).
The Borgeson steering box was the star of the whole drive. No wander, no bad habits, just good response and great feel.
So which one of us is going to spring for the dual diaphragm booster first?
I am still mulling this over.
The setup that I have in place does work but pedal travel free play is more than I'd like. When the brakes start to grab, they seem fine but not excellent.
The dual diaphragm booster should provide more assist and a bigger bore master cylinder should shorten the pedal stroke. In theory, this should result in similar pedal effort with less pedal travel.
Received my new booster yesterday. Hope to do the install tomorrow.
I am still mulling this over.
The setup that I have in place does work but pedal travel free play is more than I'd like. When the brakes start to grab, they seem fine but not excellent.
The dual diaphragm booster should provide more assist and a bigger bore master cylinder should shorten the pedal stroke. In theory, this should result in similar pedal effort with less pedal travel.
Since you've got 4 wheel disc, my money is on installing 2psi residual valves for front and rear (1 for front, 1 for rear), just after the MC connections to prevent backflow into the MC. It should raise your pedal a bit and provide a firmer pedal up top. Make up a few lines so you can swap them in and out.
I'm a bit curious about the oil pressure. Cold idle is about 50 psi but drops a lot once the engine warms up.
This is the first time I have used a standard volume oil pump in a big block. I read that most street engines do not need the higher output that the HV pumps provide and that the HV just wastes HP.
I'm running Driven oil....

View attachment 1380410

The oil level is full, the oil is clean. I'm getting around 20-25 lbs at hot idle. During cold start, it is around 50 lbs. Once it is hot, even slowly running up to 5500, the oil pressure stops climbing and stays around 45-48 lbs.
Before the rebuild, it would run close to 75 lbs at cold fast idle.
It does rise with rpm but not as fast as before when I ran the HV pump and this oil:

View attachment 1380416

I have a NAPA or WIX 1515 filter. It isn't some POS but could it be responsible for the lower numbers due to some restriction?
My old crappy 75 Power Wagon 440 runs a cold # over 60 with a hot idle around 30-35.
I recall having well over 40 lbs going down the road in this engine before with the thinner oil but the high volume pump. Now it is around 30-35 @ 2000 rpms. Maybe I am worrying for nothing but it has me curious.
My bearing tolerances were on the tight side. Each rod was .0015 and I had between .0015 and .002 on the mains. There are no leaks. It does not clatter other than the clickety clack of the solid lifters and even that is a bunch quieter than it was with the MP '528 cam with the wide lash that cam calls for.
I'm thinking of swapping in another filter of another brand.

It seemed to start easier. It idles the same. I set timing but didn't drive it. I'm concerned about the oil pressure.
I used this pump....
Melling M-63HP Melling Performance Oil Pumps | Summit Racing

View attachment 1380433

Melling Performance Oil Pumps M-63HP

Oil Pump, Standard-Volume, Chrysler, Big Block, B/RB, Each
Part Number: MEL-M63HP
4.0 out of 5 stars ( 1 )
In Stock (more than 10 available)

Estimated Ship Date: Today

Oddly, the high volume one from Melling is actually cheaper!

View attachment 1380434

Melling High-Volume Oil Pumps M63HV

Oil Pump, High-Volume, Standard Pressure, Chrysler, Big Block, B/RB, Each
Part Number: MEL-M63HV
4.67 out of 5 stars ( 15 )
In Stock (more than 10 available)

Estimated Ship Date: Today

Did I pick a bad brand? There are others listed for well over $200.

Here it is awhile later and I'm still a bit curious about this issue.
I made a 900 mile road trip recently and had 20 psi at warm idle. Rolling down the freeway at 70, approx 2100 rpms, I'm at 39 psi. That seems low to me.

I had a factory pump, or at least I think it was factory, it read 75lbs most of the time, I really don’t think it ever dropped below 50 hot or cold. I replaced it with a standard Melling, I get 50 driving and cold idling, and 30 hot idling.

There are instances where numbers you read don't inspire confidence but may be okay. I'm still uneasy about this.
Warm restarts result in a pressure increase that drops off as soon as the engine warms up a bit. I wonder if different brands of oil can thin out more than others? I don't know. Again, with this car, I always had high volume oil pumps before this build. The following screen shot has me wanting to go back to using one:


Some people do worthless things to make themselves feel better. I don't want to be that guy.....
I did find myself glancing at the oil pressure gauge a LOT while driving. That 35-40 psi reading while cruising just didn't feel right to me.
Again, there was no clatter, no change in how it ran.
Rods are still where they belong? You're probably fine...

Big question.... Do you trust the gauge?
Rods are still where they belong? You're probably fine...

Big question.... Do you trust the gauge?
Oh yeah. On the inside swinging around as they should. I may be worrying about a non-issue.

I could plumb in a mechanical gauge.


I have a few aftermarket oil pressure gauges here. My 67 Dart has low pressure showing on some generic gauge but it never clatters.
I might go ahead and buy a high volume pump just to have it if I want to use it.
Mothers often tell their sons that they are the best looking boy in school. The mothers are clearly lying but the kid feels better hearing it.
Changing the pump seems a lot like that but what is the harm?
If it gives you the warm and fuzzy feelings when you take a peek at the gauge, that’s all that’s important. No reason not to have a little extra peace of mind and let you enjoy the driving more :thumbsup:
Don't use the supplied plastic tubing for the mechanical gauge if you go that route....
not that I'd know anything about such things. :)
First I would temporarily attach a calibrated master gauge, compare it to your dash so you know if the dash is close to truth...
Second high volume pumps have been known to pump most of the oil up into the top of the engine quicker than it can find it's way back to the pan....
I found this out the hard way as well when I replaced an hv with std without thinking much of it.
My warm psi is much worse than you report. I put an hv back on it and we'll see how it is this weekend
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