I think the only way you're going to get real noticeable gains in your L-82 is by doing a cam and heads. Other than that you won't really feel any "seat of the pants" impropvements.
I speak from experience. My '79 has an L-48. I have done everything except a cam and heads. It runs great but it's not a monster by any means.
The best, most noticeable gain in performance I have done is getting the original Q-Jet carb. rebuilt. It is my opinion that the Q-Jet is the best carb. for our 350's when the rebuilder does the job well.
Vette(s): 1969 convertible L71 427/435 4-speed black interior
I agree. Without a cam change and cylinder head work about all you can do is some improvements around the edges, so to speak. You can add a different intake manifold which is some help, but the selection of intakes that will fit under a stock C3 hood are limited. An Edelbrock Performer is one of the few that fits and will help, but you won't see a huge improvement.
Having your Q-jet rebuilt by someone who knows them will be a help. Adding electronic ignition will help starting but won't be a huge improvement either...it mostly reduces maintenance but doesn't help much in and of itself.
Adding exhaust headers can make a noticeable difference, but selection is important to get the right set that does what you want.
Do all of those and you can notice a distinct difference, but still...it will require more serious work to see a substantial increase in performance.
I had a '78 L82...I added the Edelbrock Performer intake, had the Q-jet rebuilt, and kept the stock exhaust manifolds, eliminated the catalytic converter and installed a true dual exhaust (which a '74 should still have)...it made a nice difference. Not so much stump pulling torque but a it was really a nice, reasonably power engine that did everything I wanted.
Poet...Mystic...Soldier of Fortune. As always...self-absorbed, adversarial, c o c k y and in general a malcontent.
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