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Old 04-14-2006, 03:19 AM   #1
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Question Unleaded and fuel injection on a 454


I would like to convert the carburetted (4BBL) manifold to fuel injection and replace the heads with ones with hardened seats for unleaded fuel on my 1982 build 454.

The reason is, to ready the beast for LPG running. I want to get the petrol (sorry gas) systems in top condition before going gas (sorry LPG) – Confused? I am ….it’s all the “across the pond” translations!

Has any one done such a modification regarding fuel injection, and if so was it worth it? Bearing in mind our cost of fuel here.

Has anyone experience of running the 454 for extended periods on unleaded?

I am sure there is someone in Forums Land has the answer, you all have been a great help to me getting to grips with the great American Icon. Mary I and love it and we are doing our level best to restore her back to FULL showroom glory – Panels and riveting permitting – but that will come later…..

Chuck
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Old 04-14-2006, 09:08 AM   #2
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Ah yes, "the British and the Americans two people divided by a common language".

Leaded fuel is no longer sold here so I'm sure most of us run on Unleaded. There are some threads about conversion to fuel injection. Here's one:

http://www.airforums.com/forum...tml#post191655
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Old 04-14-2006, 12:12 PM   #3
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I run my 1982 454 on unleaded regular 87 octane with no problems.
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Old 04-14-2006, 12:24 PM   #4
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Unleaded and fuel injection on a 454

Do you know for sure that a 1982 454 does not have the hardened valve seats? I've been told by performance shops that hardened seats appeared before the lead disapeared. The automotive industry changed over in the early 70s.
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Old 04-14-2006, 01:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beginner
Do you know for sure that a 1982 454 does not have the hardened valve seats? I've been told by performance shops that hardened seats appeared before the lead disapeared. The automotive industry changed over in the early 70s.
Beginner
How do you find out if they are. This is getting very interesting. thanks so far ...

More please...
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Old 04-14-2006, 06:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beginner
Do you know for sure that a 1982 454 does not have the hardened valve seats? I've been told by performance shops that hardened seats appeared before the lead disapeared. The automotive industry changed over in the early 70s.
Beginner
1972 was the last year for non-hardened valve seats in North America.
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Old 04-14-2006, 07:51 PM   #7
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Hello overlander63,

All gas engines after 72 went to induction hardened valve seats except international harvester ,their engines always had hardened stellite (type of steel) valve seats .This process is where the valve seat is tempered so to speak,the hardness goes down into the seat. usually no more than 2 valve grinds could be done before the hardness depth would be compromised.You would then have to have the stellite seats installed .Problem solved. LEAD cushioned the valve action preventing wear .Im glad we wised up about lead pollution!! It wwould be better in the long run to pull the heads,freshen them up and have the seats done. heavy loads take their toll .You would not have to be concerned about those seats again .yes it will cost some money ,but do it right ,youll be glad you did.

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Old 04-14-2006, 09:28 PM   #8
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Scott, that's what I said. Also, tetraethyl lead was removed from gasoline ostensibly to keep the soon-to-arrive catalytic converters from being coated with lead from the exhaust, and rendered useless. I remember having to get a new unleaded pump installed, with a separate storage tank. I had to get the driveway repaved after the tank was installed, and the frost the following year heaved it, and the asphalt crumbled away to rubble. I was not a happy camper.
Now that I've drifted way off topic, the valve seats in the 454 in question should already be hardened, so they will not have to be redone, unless they have deteriorated.
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Old 04-15-2006, 12:58 AM   #9
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Thanks chaps, you put my mind to rest somewhat, on the valve seat question. With only 43k she should be good for a bit.

So thats one question answered, although as we are not oblidged here to fit 'The Cat' I will pass there. When the exhaust finaly gives up the ghost I may go Stainless Steel all through with the headers I keep hearing about, and be done with it.

Thank you all - once again, you all come up trumps every time this is a good site.

Chuck
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Old 04-15-2006, 09:11 AM   #10
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Carb to EFI

Chuck,

There are several good aftermarket EFI conversion kits available for your engine. Both Holley and Edelbrock make stand alone systems.

However, for a Chevy, it might be cheaper to visit a wrecking yard and get the manifold and EFI setup off a later model 454. I believe GM changed the blocks with their new style engine in the late 90's or early 2000's; I'm not sure. Where I'm going with that is that I don't know if the manifold from a current production 496 will work on your 454.

You might keep your eyes open on the wrecking yards...it might be a lot easier to just buy a low mileage 496 complete with wiring harness and everything. I'm pretty sure the motor mounts could be made to work. My understanding is that the 496 is just a bored and stroked 454. A friend has one in his GMC pickup and really likes it. Fuel mileage will never be spectacular with a gasoline mill that big, but he gets 12-13 with it on the highway (miles per gallon that is...you'll have to convert to kilometers per litre ) Anyway, I'm sure a carb'd 454 in a 4x4 truck would be hard pressed to do any better than that.

By comparison, I had a '75 Mercury Grand Marquis with a 460 V8 and I generally got 8-11 mpg with it.

Good luck.
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Old 04-18-2006, 01:20 PM   #11
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Jim, if only there were breakers in the UK where one could obtain such beauty's.

I have come to the conclusion that I should stay where I am and just get the carburettor side all up together, then go for the LPG conversion using the basic kit. It has put my mind at rest that the hardened valve seats are a 99% probability!

KISS! (Keep It Simple Stupid!) is always the best policy. I have always had a KISS sign up in the workshop....

By the way we are still miles per gallon only our UK gallon is about 20% larger so the milage looks better!

regards
Chuck
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