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Oldsmobile Forum: Engine ID
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  #1  
Old February 8th, 2006
Yogi442 Yogi442 is offline
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Engine ID

a friend of mine dropped off an Olds motor that he was told was from a w30 442. He is a Chrylser and Ford guy so was not sure what that meant. He was going to use it in a project but after a year decided to bag the idea. He was told it was a 455 I just need confirmation.
I checked the stamping # on the motor at the water pump since could not find the stamp anywhere. The # 395558 followed by a very large 2. The only stamp on the heads was located on the back side of the passenger side next to the plug, it was a 5. The 5 heads were more common on the w31's in 71 but cannot locate the other number at all. Does anyone have any idea what motor and year this may be from the #395558 2? Note, I cleaned the area thoroughly and the number is correct. One note, this is a points motor with old style alternator on driver side. Motor did have air and both valve covers are set with grommits for breathing. The #5 heads were common on the w31 350's if this helps.

Last edited by Yogi442; February 8th, 2006 at 01:20 PM.
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Old February 9th, 2006
texasred texasred is offline
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ID 395558 and casting 2 are for a 68-72 350 motor.

#5 heads were used in 68-69 (not 71) on all small block motors...2 BBL, 4 BBL, and W-31s. Could be W-31, but you'd have to pull the heads and measure the valve size, which is slightly larger for the W machines. I can look up the sizes later, if you need. BTW, the same #5 should be stamped on the left head next to the #1 spark plug (catty-corner of where it is on the right head).

The alternator on the driver's side means it was an A/C car.

I seriously doubt it was a W-31 but there's nothing wrong with a Rocket 350. I run one and am quite happy with it's free-revving characteristics.

C.J.

Last edited by texasred; February 9th, 2006 at 12:22 AM.
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  #3  
Old February 9th, 2006
Yogi442 Yogi442 is offline
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thanks for the info, just could not find in the Olds faq info. I have have many Olds' and have no problems with the 350's. I built the 350 in my 76 Cutlass before replacing with 468. My 71 id info comes from the 442 faq noting #5 heads were on the w31 for that year on the 350's.
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Old February 9th, 2006
texasred texasred is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yogi442
My 71 id info comes from the 442 faq noting #5 heads were on the w31 for that year on the 350's.
LOL! You trusted the 442 FAQ????

Foolish boy!

It is well known to contain tons of errors and Bryce will not correct them. I've been trying for years and now I'm banned from his forums for pointing them out. *sniff*

C.J.
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Old February 9th, 2006
texasred texasred is offline
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BTW...I just checked the 442 FAQ and you misread it. #7s were used in 71 for all 350s including W-31s.

It still doesn't make him any more reliable,though. According to his FAQ, there were NO 395558 350s cast in 71....but I have a numbers matching one in my 71 cutlass convertible as do many other 71 owners I know. Check it out!

C.J.

Last edited by texasred; February 9th, 2006 at 12:37 AM.
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  #6  
Old February 9th, 2006
Yogi442 Yogi442 is offline
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well son I appreciate the input and update. At least I can decide how to use it at this point.
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  #7  
Old February 9th, 2006
texasred texasred is offline
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SON??? I haven't been called that in a looooooooooooooooong time!

BTW, #5 heads are the best stock flowing small block heads.

C.J.
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  #8  
Old February 9th, 2006
Yogi442 Yogi442 is offline
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Yeah, I was checking into the motor more to decide if I want to take the time to rebuild it or not. All mine run 455's so was not sure if I wanted to rebuld another 350. I was checking and some guy offered $450.00 for the motor and trans. I know the trans was rebuilt 3 years ago so that is ok to go but the motor has been sitting for 2 years. Was told it was running when pulled but to be safe, makes more sense to rebuild and perk it up a little if I decide to keep it. Thanks for the info CJ.
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  #9  
Old February 10th, 2006
Rocketguy Rocketguy is offline
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Lol

Ya, been a long time for me too. How about sonny boy? Or just plain boy? LOL

Isn't the vibration dampener different on a W-31? It would be anther way to tell from outside the engine.

I have long known 442.com FAQ to be inaccurate as well.

Who/where is the most knolegeable source you guys have found for Olds engines?

Mine has been Rusty Patterson at Mid America Performance but I can't find his website now
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  #10  
Old February 10th, 2006
texasred texasred is offline
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Rocketguy,

You are right about the dampener. I'd forgotten about that.

Of course, the telltale that it's not a W-30 is that he "dropped it off". It's worth some real coin if it's real. Of course, who would ever claim an engine is a W-30 when it isn't?

For reference,there's nothing like good old-fashioned books. Factory manuals (Assembly, CSM, Fisher Body) and anything written by someone other than Dennis Castillo.
C.J.

Last edited by texasred; February 10th, 2006 at 10:03 PM.
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