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Big Block Fun: 1972 Chevelle SS

1972 Chevelle Malibu SS

This Chevelle SS is in need of a ton of work, but the 402 V8 should make it more than worth the work! Just think of all the fun you’ll have at every stop light, wide open roads, and abandoned parking lots! The only problem I really see is that tires aren’t going to last long. It really needs everything, but the seller claims the engine turns and the frame is solid. There are rust issues to be dealt with and the engine doesn’t run, but it looks like a project most of us could tackle. Find it here on eBay in Rome, Ohio with bidding up to $10k.


  1. Fred SS

    I would love to get this. Always liked the Chevelles. I wish I had better welding skills in order to do the rust repair myself then take it to a body shop for prep and paint.

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    • Bob Semrad

      Why don’t you just learn how to? The welder is cheap and there are tons of videos showing you how, and you can learn/practice on scrap metal…..as in…..junk riding lawn mowers for starts….and then, move up to scrap junk you can get at a junk yard…..if I can teach myself how…..anyone can…..it ain’t particle physics.

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      • grant

        I’m confused. Never heard of a 402 big block, I’m thinking poked 396?

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      • Dave Wright

        You are spot on Bob…….I am always amazed at comments like this. Do they think we are born with skills? People that really want to do things learn how and proceed.

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      • Fred SS

        I actually have a gasless mig machine I bought from Eastwood many years ago. Have used it for minor rust repair. With family issues and such, I just cannot devote more time to it.

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  2. Greg

    The 396 was called the 402 in 71 and 72. It was bored. Reasons on Google!

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  3. Chris

    Chevy spent so much time marketing the 396 thru 1970 they kept that name although the same engine go 6 cubes bigger in 71 and 72.

    A great motor. I would rebuild this one with roller cam, and raise the compression to 10.5 to 1 to get it up to the 1970 levels.

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    • John.H

      Agree with you Chris on motor rebuild. Also bore.030 over. Don’t spend good money on carb rebuild. Instead, put new throtle body fuel injection (Edelbrock or Atomic) and just save the original carb for resale.

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  4. Bill

    Overall, this is a really nice car and looks like it can be had for a price that makes sense. It’ll be interesting to see how high it goes.

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  5. John Newell

    First thing I’d do would be to get rid of the vinyl roof altogether. Work from the top down.

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  6. Alan (Michigan)

    Went for $12,005.

    This will be a great project for someone to get running, then improve in appearance as time and funds allow. The interior looks pretty good. My ’69 SS had the same console shifter for the TH400, and with an upgraded valve body, easy to light the tires a bit with the shift to 2nd. That car would holeshot any car I ever matched it against. Dig in and go while others went up in tire smoke.

    Bucket list item, to have another big block Chevelle.

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  7. roger

    My first car was 1969 Chevelle SS 396.
    Bought it from a used car lot for $1500.00
    My dad said I paid too much.
    I bought it in 1979.
    Never thought they would be worth lots of money.
    They were just used cars you could find on any car lot back then..

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  8. Doug Towsley

    With the final price at $12k, this looks like a pretty dang good deal for someone. The key will be if the buyer comes thru with payment.

    (lots of vehicle sales have high dead beat bidders, and apparently its offensive to say that in auctions although used to be common language in auctions RE: Relisted due to Deadbeat Bidder, but now ebay will cancel your auctions if you say that in the description, everyones so hyper sensitive!)

    Its a rust belt car and looks like its got some cancer here and there but nothing looks terminal. Nothing that cant be fixed and what do you expect for a car that old? I think this was a good deal and nice find for someone.

    Now personally, if it was a numbers matching car I would pull the motor and recondition it and set it aside. 2 ways to then proceed. I had a 454 in my 72 Rally Nova for a while and it was FUN FUN FUN, but not as a daily driver. Personally I can make a small block move on down the road and still pull decent mileage. If it was me, I would go a 350 with a overdrive Auto trans with shift kit. BUT if you want to go big block, then why pay the BB penalty of fuel economy and weight (Thats a LOT of cast iron over the front wheels) then might as well go big or go home. 454 if you want big block. Easy to find, and not bad $$$ to rebuild and hop up. (Find a truck or Suburban with a good running core) Not hard to pull 500 hp and nearly 500 ft lbs torque for very little money and parts,. My wife has a 69 Chevelle and as an investment, these are a good car to invest your pesos and rubles in if you are careful. Much more fun than a 401k or IRA and better return on your money.

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    • Jim

      Doug, I agree with no substitute for cubic inches but a 402 will get the job done if it’s built right. I have a 72 Monte Carlo drag car, 402, turbo 350 and a narrowed 12 bolt rear, basically stock suspension, aluminum interior and it’s consistent 11.35 1/4 miles times. Lots of torque works well. I’m looking for another big block to build for more power but I’ll take any at the right price. If I were building a street car to drive regularly I’d go with a small block or LS, a few friends are going that way and they’re getting good mileage and reasonable hp.

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  9. Chris

    I personally think 12k is too much. A perfect 72 Chevelle will bring 40k tops and this one needs 15k in paint and 5k in the motor and probably 3-5k in other places.

    Like 0

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