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This is information passed on to me by Bankerbalt when he just rebuilt his engine.
I will assume no credit except the fact that I kept this email for this long!

There aren't a lot of things to really build the engine to handle more power. It's kind of a personal preference depending on what your power goals are. Since I'm keeping my SC for now and probably not going over 400, I didn't get everything needed, but a healthy chunk of parts... I'm gonna break it down how I think you should build it along with the wear components you'll need to replace. If you can get your hands on a block from an 07+, I would HIGHLY, HIGHLY suggest it unless you plan on putting Darton Sleeves in (which would cost almost as much and make it stronger, but you'd have to get the old ones pressed out and the new ones pressed in). Also, make sure you buy all of the parts before you bring any part of the block to the machine shop. They will need your new parts to check clearances and gaps everywhere.

Required Parts:
Wiseco Piston/Eagle Rod combo - Bought through Real Street Performance on Ebay for 800, offer them 750. Stock compression and bore is 10:1 & 86mm. Don't bother getting the sleeves bored out because it's minimal gains and less durability with the sleeves. You can, however get a smaller compression if you chose You will lose low end torque with the smaller compression you get. Keep in mind that higher compression means less boost and more vacuum, but more torque when you're in that vacuum range than you would with smaller compression. Unless you plan on going turbo in the future, just keep the stock 10:1 compression with the 86mm bore.

Girdle bolts - These are basically just stock replacement bolts because they are all torque-to-yield. You can find them under the miscellaneous area on CrateEngineDepot.com They may say for the LNF but all of our blocks are the same and you will need the required amount. If I remember correctly, there are 20 that keep the crank in place and I think 10 for the outside to keep it on the block. These will set you back about 150 bucks

Cometic head gasket - Multi layer steel... Enough said. 90 bucks

ARP head studs - Again, enough said. You can, however, reuse the 4 e-torx bolts that are on the camshaft sprocket side. 120-160 bucks depending on where you buy from

Cam timing set - Comes with everything you need to time the cams onto the crank. The guide bolts are reusable. 110-130 bucks

Balance shaft timing set - Comes with everything you need to time the balance shafts and the water pump. The guide bolts are reusable. 80-100 bucks

Rear main seal - Keeps oil from coming out on the flywheel side of the crankshaft. 10-15 bucks

Front cover gasket set (comes w/ front main seal) - just a gasket set. 20-30 bucks

Crankshaft - The reason I say crank is because it's going to be cheaper in the long run. I believe in everything being right the first time so you don't have to tear it apart again. I cracked my crank which I'm glad I did because it actually ended up saving me 100 bucks in the build. If I had had gotten my crank milled down to compensate for the spun bearings and metal shavings, it would've cost me 175 for the machining and an additional 260 just for the oversized bearings. A new GM crank will cost you about 200 shipped from GM Parts Online - GM Parts Direct.

Main bearings - GM standard sized main bearings (2.0, 2.2, 2.4). 20-35 bucks for the set

Rod bearings - Clevite standard sized bearings. 5-6 per bearing (4 needed)

Clutch slave cylinder - Just because you should. 90 bucks

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Optional/Recommended Parts:

Lightweight Flywheel - I went with exedy. It's 15 pounds lighter than stock. People say it makes driveability worse but so far, I haven't had any issues driving it. 300 bucks

Clutch - I went with a exedy stage 2, which is a 3 puck clutch. I've heard really good things about KY clutch through TTR but I already had the clutch/flywheel combo and I wasn't sure if the flywheel was compatible. My clutch set me back 300 bucks

ARP flywheel bolts (w/ aftermarket flywheel only) - I've been told they only work with aftermarket flywheels. 20 bucks

Neutral balance shafts - I went with ZZP. Engine vibes are definitely noticable but having these or deleting them all together is much better for your engine due to the fact that the stock ones cause a lot of vibes. These are only going to be replaceable with the engine out, so make a decision before you put it back together. ZZP has a great description of why you should replace your stock ones. 270 bucks

Darton sleeves - I did not do these because I have a gen 2 block (07+). These sleeves handle a lot more power than stock sleeves in any cobalt. The old ones would have to be pressed out of the block and these pressed in. I don't remember how much they are but around 400 is what I think.

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Recommended Head Parts:

Valve Springs and retainers - ZZP has an 82lb spring kit but it's a single spring and I've heard a couple people say they seem weak. The only good thing about them I've heard is that you don't have to get spring journals shaved, meh. I went with Supertech 76lb dual spring kit. Comes with the springs, titanium retainers and seats. They shop that put them on thought their spring install tool was going to break because they're so stiff (good thing). Cost me just over 300

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Optional, not necessarily needed head parts:

Valves - I went with Supertech valves all the way around on these. Stock sizes unless you plan on getting the head completely ported. The exhaust side comes made with inconel. And as far as I know, it is a material that is resistant to carbon so you don't have much, if any build up on that side and lose some power because of it. You of course need 8 intake and 8 exhaust valves. Cost is just under 300 for all.

Valve guides - I went with supertech valve guides just because I could. Comes in a set of 16. Cost is 100 bucks

Viton seals - Again, because I could. Comes in a set of 16. cost is 20 bucks

Valve caps - Might not need to replace all of them. The stock ones are the ones you'll need. 16 needed to complete, but if you don't need to replace all of them, the shop installing the springs will tell you. They're like 3-5 bucks a piece from GM.

Cams - Only if you do springs/retainers. I didn't do cams, maybe in the future. Get through TTR if you do. Cost is about 470 bucks

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Services both needed/recommended:

Cleaning - Get EVERY part of the block hot tanked. Getting all of the excess residue and stuff off the inside and out of every part of the block. Cost is anywhere between 50-150 bucks

Honing - Even if you get new sleeves, they will probably need to be cross hatched for the rings. I only paid like 10-15 bucks per cylinder. They will probably check ring gaps for you also.

Crank balancing - Just to make sure you can rev higher, safely. Cost is anywhere between 100-225 bucks

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Miscellaneous OEM replacements:

Intake gaskets
Exhaust gasket
Valve cover gasket
Throttle body gasket
Water pump
Thermostat
Belt
Lots of RTV Grey

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Highly suggested if you don't already have (you don't have to include these in the build obviously):

TTR Engine Mount - Vibes hard at first but settle after a while. Made of steel instead of aluminum and keeps the engine from moving. Also helps keep the life of your flex on your downpipe. 190 bucks

TTR Tranny Mounts - These are just inserts. Again, vibes, but keeps everything more still and they do settle down. 55 bucks for the pair

FE5 Shocks/Struts - Not sure if you have them or not yet, but I don't think I have to explain this, ha. about 250 bucks

Moog Endlinks for FE5 suspension - Thicker for better stability. 50 bucks

Front sway bar - Definitely optional here. It would make turning feel more stable but could cause understeer. I would suggest just finding an SS/TC used sway bar on ebay and put some moog sway bar bushings in. Roughly 100 bucks all together

Rear sway bar - TTR and progress are the best bang for your buck. But as I told you, powell has the best made bar out there. Not sure on prices but you're looking anywhere from 160 to 300

Traction bars - I forgot what company makes them but it's basically adjustable bars that bolt onto each front control arm and the subframe of the car. Prevents wheel hop immensely from what I've heard. I think it costs somewhere between 120 and 170
 

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Levee
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Good write up!
 

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Nice write up! Though, 1 thing, lol. I take it that the neutral balance shafts is referring to the harmonic balancer (1 piece). Its set to balance the 4 cylinder out from uneven weight distribution through the cycle of an engine. All engines except for v8's require this.
 

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no, neutral balance shafts. there are two of them that are part of your second timing chain with the water pump. the only thing they do is keep your engine/car from vibrating due to the cams spinning half as fast as the crank, as the balance shafts spin twice as fast as the crank. this wastes a lot of energy and is very unsafe in higher revving engines. there is one on each side of your combustion chambers. they are not REQUIRED at all on ANY engine.

---------- Post added at 05:54 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:33 PM ----------

btw the harmonic balancer on our cars is the crank pulley, nothing else.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
that depends on your experience and confidence in your mechanical skills. You "can" do all of this yourself in a parking lot if you feel like it. Obviously you would need an engine picker.
 

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that depends on your experience and confidence in your mechanical skills. You "can" do all of this yourself in a parking lot if you feel like it. Obviously you would need an engine picker.
Agreed cuz I did that haha.

I had never put together an engine before this, let alone even take one out of the car or pull it apart. Its honestly not hard but you have to be confident in what youre doing or it can spiral downhill real quick and be a lot of money lost.
 

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I'm confident in what I do know about wrenching on a car, this is going to be my first engine build tho. And my main question behind what I can do myself is what is it that I need a certain machines took or some sort of press to work on it? The only thing I know I'm taking to someone to do for me is bore it so I can change the compression to 8:9:1 with the wiseco piston kit that I found that are 64.5 mm


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64.5mm pistons... um no. Stock bore is 86mm. Keep stock bore, lower compression to 8.9:1 if youd like but you will definitely need a tune before you start driving it. Youre gonna lose low end power. You can do everything yourself other than examining and professionally cleaning the block. Just make sure you have tools and an engine stand
 

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Sorry I meant to put 86.5 that's my bad haha
Are there any tools that people might not normally have to so it?
I was told from some friends that it would be better to change it to the 8:9:1 compression if I'm already going to take the engine apart for a rebuild so what's the pros/cons of keeping the stock compression and changing jt?


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And to give you a quick background of what I'm looking for when I'm done with my car is acceleration. Mainly from 0-100 not entirely on top end speed and/or acceleration ifthat helps with your answer
And thanks for any help and advice that you give


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---------- Post added at 05:26 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:25 PM ----------

What's the difference between stroking the motor and boring it?
Sorry I'm kinda learning about all this as I go on with it


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If you want acceleration, you want torque. Stroke the motor, add displacement, get the torque. Banker and Levee would be able to explain that in better detail.

---------- Post added at 09:30 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:28 PM ----------

Stroking is increasing the throw of each piston. Piston will travel further in the cylinder, thus creating displacement. More displacement, more air and fuel, more power. Boring the cylinders I was told will net you next to no power gain at all.
 

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for what i've heard from you guys i'm pretty sure that i'm just going to keep the stock compression i just would like to know more about all my options before i start to buy anything
 
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