Never thought it was possible...I split my stock block


Boost is good.
Jul 14, 2001
Well the worst that can happen has happened. After I made my best pass of all time with the car a few weeks ago...I noticed the car didn't sound right afterwards. It developed a constant ticking noise sounding like a compression leak. Well I drove it around for a week afterward trying to diagnose this noise. I thought it was the stock cam sensor so I changed that out. Same noise. Hmmmm....crawl under the car and sure enough I see black carbon streaks coming out underneath the cylinder head number 3 cylinder. I'm like oh great I blew another headgasket.

So I tore it all apart thinking I just popped a gasket. WRONG...soon as I pulled the intake off, I noticed a very very fine hairline crack going across the bottom of the lifter valley (right above the lifters) on the passenger side...after further examination, sure enough it's cracked. That would explain why I noticed the crank pulley "wobbling" at idle. The damn crank was out of balance because the block has slightly shifted. I also noticed the pushrods were rubbing on number 2 cylinder (see wear marks in pics). That was my ticking noise I bet. The driver side headgasket didn't look that great but wasnt blown completely.

So now the car is down and out for the rest of the year. I bet the block has been weak all along and now I'm making some pretty good power and it couldn't handle it. Also running the stock rotating assembly at 6065 rpms on that pass with detonation didn't help things. It's all my fault. The whole bottom end had 120k miles on it, driven pretty hard for the last 5 years. Guess it had enough. I calculated I was making around 625-650 horse at the motor to be running the times I was running at the weight. Now it's time to go through EVERYTHING on the car and upgrade accordingly. Looks like I better get in line for Dan to build me a solid 109 block.
Man that sux. My car has been down for about 10 months since I spun a main bearing.....:rolleyes:

My SG1 NA 109 block is about to come together. Hopefully you can find a suitable replacement block...and swap in all your parts....

Good Luck.
Dang, Don that really blows! (no pun intended) I guess that 67 turbo was the straw that broke the camels back. If you have DS build you a stout short block, I'm sure you will be running solid 10:50's next year. (if you can get your engine by then!)

yeah I know Dan is backed up big time...not sure if I want to wait that long though...I want to get a stroker 109 motor with a solid roller cam, all the goodies...I knew it was only a matter of time before something gave way on the stock rotating assembly...funny I thought I would bust a main cap before splitting the damn block! hell the stock mains held up just fine at 6000 rpms! (and I didn't mean to run that high of rpms either!)
Oh, man that sucks!!!!!! Well at least you didn't grenade the motor and scatter pieces all over the track!!:eek: Myself Im running the stock block, crankshaft, rods. deep into the 11's and Im getting concerned too. Just the other day I let a buddy of mine drive the car at the track... I told him to make sure its in drive, because the column shift I have in the car is pretty tough to see what gear its in... well he took the car out and it looked good except I didn't hear it shift into drive..:eek: He ran a 12.30 @ 93 mph in second gear!!!!!!!!!!!:confused: That's way too much rpm for the stock rotating assy.. Luckily he didn't blow the engine up. I thought for sure I would hear a bearing rattle when he come back on the return road.. That is the last time anybody drives my car again!!!!!

I do want to build another engine this winter to take the abuse I will give it.:biggrin:

Ive seen several mid-10 second Buicks with the stock engine... I did see one poor guy run a 10.70 and all of the sudden parts were exiting the block.... Luckily he kept control of the car but the engine block was cracked in two, which also broke the transmission bell housing too.
I know my car was making some weird sounds when i broke the main caps. same thing . i drove around for about week. i called gary at street performance . he told me what the noise was . he was right. i broke all but the rear cap. i also was by pete at ans and seen a stage 1 block broke in half right down the center. that is some major power. good luck with your new build
Oh, man that sucks!!!!!! Well at least you didn't grenade the motor and scatter pieces all over the track!!:eek:

Good point, you can still salvage the rest of the motor instead of having to pay for a dumpster and a car detail job like I did. :D

I'd get Dan on the job now. You have plenty of time to get that thing fixed by spring. Do you have a spare shortblock?
no spares...funny thing is I drained the oil and it looked perfect...the antifreeze had SOME oil in it but not bad...
WOW!!! Sorry about the breakage but man. When I used to run the 5.0s we split the stock blocks at @ the same 650hp level. We used to joke that you knew your tune was spot on if you could split the block and not blow the headgaskets doing it. If your looking for a block you might get in touch with Chris McDade on this board great guy and he has lots of buick parts. Good luck Jon Hanson
Sucks man. My current build up started after I ventilated a piston in my old stocker pushing it to far.

If you are hard up for a 109, there is a u-pull-it yard down here in Cincinnati that just got an ' 87 na Regal in. I already stole some parts off it, but the na 109 is still there. they want $100 if you pull it or $200 if they pull it. Let me know if you need some info on it.
What a drag - at least 'they' could have let you see a 10 before it broke; it was so close.

Maybe time to do something way out as there is no reason to try to salvage what you have at the power you are already achieving
Yeah I'm having Dan @ DLS build me a stroker motor. Hell he's in my backyard literally...I'm only two towns away from him! Never did realize how the center of the Buick universe was all around me with him and PTE...hehe.

I wanted a 10 so bad...I would have had it easily with better tires and launch...I was only running puny little 255/50/16 drag radials on a 5 psi launch!
That sucks Man! :frown: Welcome to the club ;) I was running low 11's then dipped into the 10's w/ a PT-67@28psi and it broke the stock crank in half along with the entire block It took out the bell housing and everything. :frown: I feel your pain :wink:
I'm just glad I caught it now before I went to the track again and everything came apart at 125 mph...that would be bad!:eek: :eek: :eek: here I can at least salvage all my parts...just a little token for those of you who think you can run 600-650 horse on a stock rotating are walking a FINE line! especially if the mileage is up there...I'd never do this again that's for sure...I should have stopped at the stock iron heads and TE-44!!! now look at me...the car is slowly becoming a racecar :( oh well one day I'll buy a mint low mileage moonroof GN and then I won't feel so bad modifying this one...
...just a little token for those of you who think you can run 600-650 horse on a stock rotating are walking a FINE line! especially if the mileage is up there...I'd never do this again that's for sure.

Yep ;) I can't believe some of these guys in the low 10's with the stock bottom end. :confused: Their Crazy!!!! I would never push a stock bottom end into the 10's again. Especially while using a trans brake. ;) Good luck with the new build. Your doing exactly what I went through. Now I have a 400 trans, girdle, GTQ-70, 3.5DP etc. and all the required safety crap you need to run at the track. They are sticklers out here in CA.