Starting a second engine build. this one will not be stock. would love hear your opinions on the Edelbrock intake vs the stock Pontiac.
The edelbrock should give top end power but at what cost?
First you have to define what "will not be stock" means to you - and us. It could be just a bigger cam or a stroker kit, aluminum heads, roller cam, headers, etc..
Aluminum will be lighter and may be of help in keeping fuel cooler.
points out, the original Torker was really misnamed. It is an open plenum intake with what was known as the "Volu-Step" floor which was a lowered floor area below the primary bores of the Q-jet whose purpose was to minimize the A/F mixture from slamming into the intake floor. It did prove to show power improvements above 5,000 RPM's, but it gave up torque on the lower end which is typically where the street Pontiacs make power.
The Torker II is a redesign said to be improved, but still an open plenum intake and you can't just bolt on a Q-jet as it is made for the square bore carbs like Holley.
From what I read, the Edelbrock Performer and Performer RPM are often the aluminum intakes of choice. Each has its differences, so you want to read up on them at the Edelbrock website if you choose this route.
You also have several "older" intakes that can be had off Ebay for a reasonable price if you want to experiment a little with an aluminum intake. I have/had used an Offenhauser 360 intake on my previous 400CI build. It is an open plenum design and I used a Q-jet. It was a freebie so I tried it. Seemed to work great for me, but this was with a 3-speed manual trans. Perhaps an automatic with stock converter, 3.08's or something in the 2.?? gear ratio range might prove differently.
If you want visual looks, I am a dual quad guy. Nothing like 2 AFB 4Bbls sitting on top of the engine and in my opinion, better fuel distribution when you open them both up.
The tried and true as bigD
stated, is the factory cast iron Q-jet manifold and Q-jet. In my opinion, nothing sounds better when those big secondaries pop open and you get that deep tone through the exhaust. I believe it was around 1971 that the Q-jets were 800 CFM's. I would have to check Cliff Ruggle's book.