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C4 + 454?


Well-known member
Nov 2, 2000
The Land of Enchantment
In the market
Lately I've been tring to come up with inovative ways of using the 454 rat motor from my Blazer. The first thing that occured to me was to plunk it into a chrome bumper shark, and while I like this idea very much... It also occured to me that I could try to shoehorn it into a C4. The question is, will the motor actually fit in the engine bay? And suppose it does, what about the drive train? The 4+3 tranny's wont stand up to the 500+Hp for long. Perhaps the early ZF-6's? I dont remember the spec exactly, but they where rated well into the 400+hp area right?

And what about body flex? With the top off on my GS I can feel the body flex a little when I realy get on it. Would a rat motor twist a C4 into knots?

It's been done! You might check with Ed at the Corvette Shanty, I know he was involved with one. Yes, it probably would be a handful, an X brace from a convertable would help.
454 -c4

I have my sbc out of my 1985 for repairs nowso just because I was thinking like you and I also have a rat in the garage I tryed to test fit it. the windsheild motor is very close to the cylinder head on the left side but looks like it will fit if I use the correct valvue cover .the pan hit the frame (k-member but I cut out the first 3" in the front and rewelded it back in now it fits, this is only because its a deep truck pan a car pan would most likely fit) the harmonic ballancer is close to the steering assembly(the drive belt and pulley for the serpintine system will have to be only 1" or so wide in front of the ballancer) the exhaust manifolds will have to be custom made or at least different than what I have now ,other than that looks like a bolt in deal, as soon as I save up for an aluminum water pump and pulleys and build your own header kit this rats got a new home!! :) call me (prlangevin@hotmail.com )ifyou have done this or want to!!!!
Jason......I've seen it done a few times. The most recent being an '85 auto about 4 weeks ago. Very impressive. A Ton of modifying. If you go fuel injected, you'll need a custom "mini-ram" made to clear the stock hood. I've got a great article on a BB in a C-4 & how it's done. If you want more info, I'll send it to you.

The C-4 sounds great with a small block. Could you imagine a BigB???:eek:

Big Block into C4 is possible but uncommon.

GM did a BB C4 Convertible called "The Big Doggie". Known by official GM as the "ZR2" this was a late-80s concept/test vehicle that was built to validate the C4 driveline with engines of power and torque similar to that of the then-coming LT5.

The car used a 454 Marine short block with aluminum heads.

Other people around the country have done Big-Block/C4 retrofits.

Generally, putting a 454 into a C4 is a bit of work but not an impossible task for someone with time and fabrication skills. Slight modificatons to the frame and floor pan are required. Getting the package to cool well is a significant challenge.

The leading post in this thread makes reference to a 454 out of a Blazer. Note that a well-built street high-performance small block V8 will be more powerful and a better choice than the 454 out of a Blazer becuase light truck 454s were decidely low-performance engines--especially their cylinder heads. Making a Blazer 454 into a high-peformance Big-Bock is going to mean a lot of changes to the engine.
Thanks for the info:) I have that Motor Trend article on "the Big Doggie" it's quite old but awesome:D Also in that issue there is the V-12 ZR-1 known as Conan, a Snake Skinner ZR-1 and a ZR-1 on the Nitrous........mean issue!

Thaks for the info guys. I still have yet to find a suitable C4 (havent really been looking though:)). But I've pretty much decided this is what I want to do.

The 454 is not the originall motor for the Blazer. The Blazer's original motor was a 350. Some time in the past the truck has been extensivley modified for show and off road. The 454 is a crate engine with an Edelbrock intake and a Holley 750CFM Carb. It hasnt been dynoed as far as I know. But it's got plenty of power.

The engine if comming out of the truck in the next few weeks. And I know it's going to need some major work to get it ready for it's new home. The previous owner :r(not the guy that modified it) was not very kind to the truck. When I bought it, the engine was about 2 quarts low on oil and one of the lifters was smacking the valve cover. The motor has custom headers bolted to it and the heat from the headers has pretty much melted the starter...

I've got a couple of buddies enlisted to help me out on this, plus a good shop if I get in over my head.

twiget said:
...one of the lifters was smacking the valve cover.

:L That's pretty bad, Jason. :L Now if it was a "rocker arm" hitting the valve cover, I could understand. ;)

1987 Z51 said:

:L That's pretty bad, Jason. :L Now if it was a "rocker arm" hitting the valve cover, I could understand. ;)


:eek: Your probably right Ken. I havent gotten into the engine yet. And as a disclamer, if I make a stupid remark like the above.. sorry, I'm still kind of new to the actual workings of an engine. ;)


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