Buick Rod Polishing
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The stock-type connecting rods in a Buick 400, 430, or 455 engine gain a strength advantage by polish the sides of the beams where there is a parting seam from when they were originally made. Sharp edges can form stress risers, which turn into cracks, which turn into bad noises, which turn into big Visa bills. This helps make the stock rods a bit better for some extra insurance in case of intentional or unintentional trips to the redline.

After you do the polishing, make sure to get the rods shot peened before any resizing work, and you'll have some pretty decent rods. With stock rod bolts they should do just fine up through 5600 to 5800 RPM. If you opt to replace the rod bolts with some brand new ARP pieces, you should have rods good for 6500 RPM. That's what Steven Dove claims in his book Guide to Buick Performance Engines, and I've no reason to doubt it.

These are the pictures of a rod before I polished the side beams.

BuickRodBeamPolishing01.jpg (794138 bytes) BuickRodBeamPolishing02.jpg (785468 bytes) BuickRodBeamPolishing03.jpg (754203 bytes)

These are the pictures of a rod after I polished the side beams. You could probably do more than this to make them a bit stronger.

BuickRodBeamPolishing04.jpg (754203 bytes) BuickRodBeamPolishing05.jpg (663062 bytes) BuickRodBeamPolishing06.jpg (813904 bytes)

This is what I used to do the polishing. Each "drum" lasted for about 3-4 "sides" depending on how much the parting seam material needs to be removed.

BuickRodBeamPolishing07.jpg (818696 bytes) BuickRodBeamPolishing08.jpg (793439 bytes)


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Page last updated 01/02/2009 01:51:39 PM