How to Identify a Chevy Cam

by Floyd Drake III

Camshafts come in a wide array of variations, and Chevrolet has a range of camshafts for different applications, engine sizes and performance specs. As each engine model comes with a specific camshaft, proper identification is key to finding the right one. Because the camshaft orchestrates the entire valve system, your Chevy won't run properly without it. Many camshaft number reference sites exist online for V8 engines, but determining the camshaft specs for six- and four-cylinder engines may require contacting a Chevrolet parts department.

Remove the camshaft from the engine if necessary. This is an involved process, requiring the removal of the engine's front end. The radiator, hoses, timing assembly, belts and fan will need to be removed to access the camshaft. This is a job for professionals and the mechanically-inclined.

Locate the ID number on the camshaft. It is typically located in the center of the cam between the lobes. The ID number will consist of either eight or nine digits; the last four numbers identify the cam and its specific application.

Match the number to a Chevrolet camshaft part number listing. For online resources, check out NastyZ28.com, Kendrick-Auto.com or Chevy-Camaro.com which have detailed listings, or contact a Chevrolet parts department to identify the camshaft.

About the Author

A native of New Haven, Conn., Floyd Drake III began writing in 1984. His work has appeared in the "New Haven Register," Medford's "Mail-Tribune" and the "Ashland Daily Tidings." Drake studied journalism at Southern Connecticut State University. After working as a reporter in Oregon, he is now based back home in New Haven.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera chevrolet image by Eduard Shelesnjak from Fotolia.com