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Thread: 1966 Cruiser upgrading questions

  1. #1
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    1966 Cruiser upgrading questions

    I have a 66 cruiser with the 283 auto, 3:31twintraction rear end, power steering, brakes etc. Has anyone livened up a 283 ? If so how? or recommendations..... I do not want to take away from the history or originality of the car by putting in a different engine. Also how wide of a rim could I run in the rear? How big/ wide of rear tire could I run without rubbing on the fenders? 50/15 to big? I'm in need of a good set of fender fillers as well if anyone may have a set.

    Thanks

  2. #2
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    I had a daily driver 65 Cruiser with 283 Flightomatic and twin trac 3.07 that I drove for years. As far as I know the 283 had several aftermarket hop up stuff available. For everyday around town driving, so someone got ahead of me by 3 seconds until the next light when I caught up with them. Big deal. But as has been echoed around the forum lots of times: your car your choice.

    I am going to pick up a 66 Cruiser on March 18th.

    Bob Miles
    Tucson AZ on March 5th

  3. #3
    Silver Hawk Member JoeHall's Avatar
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    In the mid-late 1980s I had a65 Daytona SS, with 283, FOM and 3.07 rear end. I still recall how butter smooth that 283 was. Its performance was about on par with a Stude 289. If I ever had another 65-66 Stude with 283, would not touch the motor. But that's just me.

  4. #4
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    You can always ad a 4bbl intake and carb to it. That will liven it up a little.

  5. #5
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    I put a 327 in my 66 Daytona along with a 4 speed but went with a 4 bbl carb & block hugger headers, dual exhaust & got great performance. If you keep the 283 I'd go with the 4 bbl & exhaust setup alone. That should get you better breathing both in & out.
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  6. #6
    President Member 2moredoors's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feed back
    everyone. I did a custom dual exhaust with flow master 40's. Petronics ignition as well. Currently doing a Turner disc brake upgrade in the front. Recommendations on an intake and carb combo?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bam5966 View Post
    Thanks for the feed back
    everyone. I did a custom dual exhaust with flow master 40's. Petronics ignition as well. Currently doing a Turner disc brake upgrade in the front. Recommendations on an intake and carb combo?
    keep it simple, dual-plane aftermarket aluminum intake and Edelbrock 500cfm carb. If you are concerned about original 'look' to the engine go with pre-thermoquad cast iron intake...something like a 66 or 67 327 manifold that came with an AFB carb which has the benefit of the original oil-fill tube. Some aftermarket intakes have a place for the oil-fill tube to be installed but boring a hole may be required...I haven't kept up on what the aftermarket is offering at the moment but a friend told me that Summit has their own brand of sbc intakes that are very reasonably priced...maybe check that out. Cheers, junior


    1954 C5 Hamilton car.

  9. #9
    Commander Member
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    Putting the 4 barrel on the 283 sounds easy...and it is until you get to hooking up that kick down cable....I did the same thing with my 66 Cruiser. I decided my .030 283 needed a 4 barrel, installed it and was left with a cable that had no place to attach...this was 7 years ago and I needed the car ready in 4 days to go to South bend...so I got it to the transmission shop we use at work, he took the adapter piece off the arm of 2 barrel that the cable attached to and put it on the edelbrock carb made a spacer between the top half of the arm to the top of the adapter and made sure the angle was right and modified the bracket that held the cable at the intake. I can take pictures if you need them! Also the engine had an Elgin Cams RV cam, which was fine around town, lacked power on the highway, last weekend I put a Speed pro Cam that works up to 5800, it's much more fun now!

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