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chromefeet_withbeat
12-28-2005, 09:26 PM
I was browsing engines in the local craiglist and came upon thisad for a 394 olds. (http://www.craigslist.org/nby/pts/120804244.html)

Have I not been paying enough attention or does this engine not exist? My friend says this was one of the earlier big blocks but the closest one I know of is 400 inches, is this ad woofing? :confused:

mike's88
12-28-2005, 10:18 PM
Your friend was partially right. The 394 was a version of the orig. olds v-8. The 303 was 1st, then 324, 371 then the 394. Current version started with the 330, also avail. in 1964, cutlass only, was the 1st sbo, then in '65, bbo came out(400&425) to replace the 394.

chromefeet_withbeat
12-29-2005, 03:54 AM
So all those motors were BB? Are the parts for them interchangeable with 64 and later sbo or bbo?

furtrader
12-29-2005, 07:07 AM
A friend of mine had a '62 Starfire with a 394

69Rocket-Joe
12-29-2005, 08:50 AM
So all those motors were BB? Are the parts for them interchangeable with 64 and later sbo or bbo?
As far as I know none of the parts are interchangeable with "modern" Olds engines. Might have been cool to pick up for $200, but I see the ad is deleted. Could have been worth more than that to someone looking for a specific engine.

-Joe

mike's88
12-29-2005, 11:00 AM
So all those motors were BB? Are the parts for them interchangeable with 64 and later sbo or bbo?I believe the early olds v-8 was like the modern poncho v-8, all the same components, i.e. heads and block, and intake,etc. Only difference from one to the next was bore and stroke. Deck heights were all the same, unlike modern olds v-8 sb vs. bb. So no, the early olds v-8 parts are not interchangable with the modern version

classic gbody
12-29-2005, 11:21 AM
The 394 first came out in 1959 I believe. My fathers 1960 Olds Super 88 has a 394. It was the early Olds big block and were usually put in the Super 88's and 98's back in 59 and early 60's. The parts are not interchangable with any other olds big blocks like the 455's. They are in a class all of their own. They look like a Pontiac engine.

64Rocket
12-31-2005, 02:21 AM
They are a breed on there own. started in 1949. '49/53 = 303cid '54/56 = 324cid, '57/60 = 371 cid '59/64 = 394cid
None of the parts interchange. The 394 has some spec's as a 455, but for the most part no. And no they do not look like a Pontiac..........................

Gene

arocars
01-01-2006, 02:13 PM
The Oldsmobile 394 ended in 1964. It was offered in big cars except the Jetstar. There is no aftermarket support, no hi-po parts availability and no interchangeability with semi-modern Olds engines. Avoid the 394.

Cutlass84
01-01-2006, 04:36 PM
I always thought it'd be cool to put a 394 in an old GMC pickup.. Like a 56 or so.

http://www.chevytrucks.org/wayne/wayne56gmc.jpg

Just like that one but in some nice flat black paint. :cool:

Cutlass84
01-01-2006, 04:51 PM
As for parts, they are still availible. Back in the day they were dominant in lots of drag and stock car racing. There are many wierd intakes availible, like 3x2 and 8 single barrel carb setup. Pretty sure hilborn even made a blower intake for it. Egge obselete engine parts also supplies parts such as pistons.. Aside from that with the help of ebay you shouldnt have much trouble putting one together as well as making decent power with it.

If you wanna know more about it seach a little on realoldspower.com.. Look for a guy named blown olds. He seems to be the old Olds motor guru.

rocketraider
01-01-2006, 10:51 PM
The Oldsmobile 394 ended in 1964. It was offered in big cars except the Jetstar. There is no aftermarket support, no hi-po parts availability and no interchangeability with semi-modern Olds engines. Avoid the 394.

It WAS available in Starfire trim in the Jetstar I. Jetstar 88s are a different animal entirely and as much as I love 64 big Oldsmobiles, it has taken me years to warm up to the the J88 with their 330s, 2-speed Jetaways, and worst of all their damn small-ass Chevrolet brakes. I have finally accepted what they were- big Olds for someone who didn't want the big engine.

Avoid the 394? :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

Most of them don't NEED any aftermarket hi-po stuff to run like a raped ape, and if you want to go exotic like Paul's talking about it's fairly common on ebay. Not cheap, but it's out there. The worst thing about them is the fact that no modern transmission will readily bolt up to them, stick setups are rare as hell, and guys who can build HydraMatics are a vanishing breed. Nope- you won't find anything for them in a Jeg's or Summit catalog, but if you have anything except a SBC or 5.0 Ford they don't have a clue what you're talking about anyway.

BTW- 394s ruled the gasser classes until the Ford Cammer was released. There was about any type of go-fast sh*it you could want produced for them when they were current.

And my Starfires have surprised the hell out of more than a few Mustangs.

BTW Paul- Hilborn made fuel injection setups for them. Weiand, Crower, and Offenhauser made blower pans to put GMC blowers on them. Found a Weiand at Spring Carlisle a few years back, and a real-for-sure Hilborn injection showed up at Fall Charlotte in 1999. Valley cover, distribution block, high-pressure lines, the adjustable length injector stacks and butterflies, even the cam-driven high-pressure pump and timing cover. There's guys converting the old Hilborns over to EFI and finally making them streetable. They were strictly high RPM stuff in their day- dragstrip screamers but weren't worth a hoot on the street. The technology they had then didn't allow for a reasonable idle or off idle performance.

88 coupe
01-02-2006, 08:16 AM
Hello everyone

The 394 first came out in 1959 I believe ........
Both 371 and 394 were available in '59. Slightly different block (to allow for the bigger bore and longer stroke) and redesigned heads/cam to work with the extra cubes, but mostly unchanged from the 303, 324, and 371.

371 had 2 deck heights and the shorter pistons fit nicely in a bored 324 to make 346.

........ It was the early Olds big block ........ parts are not interchangable with any other olds big blocks ........
Like Pontiac (one block from 287 to 455), there was one block from 303 to 394. First SBO was 330, first BBO was 400/425.

My Grey Coupe had a 394/hydro before its first 455/TH400.

Regards, Norm


Edited to correct typo: It should have read, "Both 371 and 394 were available in '59."

Thanks 64Rocket: Didn't know the 371 was available in '60.

Psyco Diver 69
01-02-2006, 10:58 AM
I my friend is trying to hunt down a 371 right now for is 56 olds. He was going to put in the olds 350 he later sold me but he got a dual 4bbl offy intake for 50 bucks so now he would rather run a 371. The parts can be found for cheap acctually because alot of people think their old junk no one wants

71CutlassConvertible
01-02-2006, 11:48 AM
The 303, 324, 371 and 394 are typically referred to as the First Generation Olds engines, and the later, more modern engines that we are more familiar with are referred to as the Second Generation engines.

From what I have read, the 394 was an awesome engine - large bore, short stroke, with a long rod (similar to the early400/425) with floating pistons. Fantastic engineering from Olds R&D that dominated the racing circuits for years. Richard Petty and the Olds team dominated the race circuit (NASCAR from '57 to '59 (?)) with their J-2 371s (3 2bbl carbs) until the Chevy guys whined so much that the rules were changed and multi-carb engines were banned. Too bad a lot of that engineering was dropped from the Second Gen engines.

88 coupe
01-02-2006, 12:45 PM
371s had J-2s. 394s did not.

Tri carb didn't show up again 'til '66.

Chev had triple carbs in '58 and '59.

Norm

88 coupe
01-04-2006, 08:43 AM
The 303, 324, 371 and 394 are typically referred to as the First Generation Olds engines, and the later, more modern engines that we are more familiar with are referred to as the Second Generation engines ........
OK.

This is the second time I've seen "generation" used in this context.

What generation were the Olds V8s that were produced prior to WWII?

I wouldn't call them "modern", like most do the SB and BBO.

Norm

71CutlassConvertible
01-04-2006, 09:04 AM
371s had J-2s. 394s did not.

That's what I said:
Richard Petty and the Olds team dominated the race circuit (NASCAR from '57 to '59 (?)) with their J-2 371s


OK.

This is the second time I've seen "generation" used in this context.

What generation were the Olds V8s that were produced prior to WWII?

I wouldn't call them "modern", like most do the SB and BBO.

Norm
I guess it's the First Generation and Second Generation overhead valve engines. I don't know much about the pre WWII engines, but aren't they the flat head design? The term "modern" is relative; the first and second gen engines were "modern" compared to the pre WWII engines. As time goes by everything "modern" becomes old and obsolete, as is the case with Oldsmobile itself these days. I still think of the Second Gen engines as "modern" because that's what they were when I was introduced to them, and I still think of G-Bodies as "new" cars. I guess I'm just stuck in time...