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Old 10-09-2007, 09:56 PM   #1
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What's currently the best choice for roller retrofit lifters for the SBC?

Solid or hydraulic, what are currently the best choices in terms of performance and mass?

I'd like to lighten my valvetrain a little over the winter. I have a roller retrofit cam but the valvetrain runs out of steam at about 6300 RPM, probably due to mass. I'm using a 687-16 spring (I think) which is already fairly heavy. I might convert to beehive with titanium retainers to help, but I want to consider getting a high-perf. lifter with less mass. I am currently using an Elgin roller retrofit lifter, built circa 1998.
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Old 10-11-2007, 05:55 PM   #2
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The lifter mass is basically irrelevant to rpm potential. It's the weight of the stuff on the valve side that seems to count. I doubt changing lifters would be worthwhile for you. I have had good luck with Crowers in a variety of applications. But I never really thought about lifter weight and I have no idea if they are light, heavy, or in between.

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Old 10-11-2007, 06:41 PM   #3
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Rich, If lifter mass were irrelevent, there wouldn't be much difference in terms of hydraulic and solid roller cam profiles. It's still getting tossed off the cam lobe by inertia, and re-engaged by the valvespring. Maybe not as much as, say a valve face, but it certainly plays a part in valvetrain control. I also think that might be some newer designs to hydraulic roller lifters that offer better oil control in order to reduce lifter pump-up.

There's the Crane hydraulic lifter, P/N CRA11532-16, and $479 per set. I haven't finished researching them yet, but I'm looking at trying to control my valvetrain to 6800 RPM. The engine is currently falling off the power curve steeply at 6300, and I think it's valvetrain related.

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Old 10-11-2007, 08:03 PM   #4
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I don't agree, at least not much. But that's what keeps life interesting. I am not saying it means nothing, just that if you are having trouble controlling your valvetrain there are other places to go first before looking to lower the lifter weight. The general approach of lightening the valve side and/or more spring is where you should go first. I think you are looking at poor bang for the buck situation in the circumstance you describe. But YMMV.

Rich
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