Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Engine swaps

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Engine swaps

    I have read many times on our forum, people getting their nose out of joint when someone posts a desire to swap out a Studebaker engine. While I enjoy using a Studebaker engine and really like being able to make them run well, I also like a well pulled off swap. The 65/66 Studebakers are an example of a well engineered swap. When I was 16 I had a 55 Chevy 1/2 ton panel truck with a very tired 235 six. Instead of rebuilding the six I installed a 56 Pontiac 316, 4 barrel V8 for a few reasons. I got the engine for nothing from a neighbor. It was fun making everything fit and work, and the truck was a blast to drive afterward. A year later I put a 421 Pontiac in my 57 Chevy 2dr sedan. I bought the car without an engine and I got the 421 from a wreck. It was less than half the price of a HP 327 or the just released 396/427. I helped more than one friend put a 348 in his tri-five Chevy. I have witnessed a 401 nailhead Buick put into a 53 coupe. It fit really well and the car was fast. A local guy years ago put a 426 Chrysler Hemi in an AMC Gremlin. It too was fast and stunned people when the hood was opened. Rarely is the swap candidate a pristine original car. My requirement for a swap is it should look like it could have been done by the factory. Sometime you use what you have and it makes for a nice ride. I think if a swap gets a Studebaker on the road rather than languishing in a garage, behind the house, out in a field, I'm all for it. I guess I'm still a product of the 50's/60's when many cars had engine swaps.

    What do the rest of you think? I'm interested to hear others opinion. I think I could make an argument either way.
    james r pepper

  • #2
    I agree with you. One of the reasons my '54 Chevy wagon and model A have Ford FE 390's ,my '54 Chevy sedan has a 4.3 liter, my model T has a 200ci inline six, and my VW chassis kit car has a 2.8 liter v6. My next project, if one, will likely have either a NOS Stude 232, or a 0.748 liter inline 4 or maybe a Stude 170 since I have those sitting here.
    sigpic

    Comment


    • #3
      I'm with you, Jim. However, in today's world, I'm really curious about current power plants and not the traditional SBC's, crate engines, or other heavy chunks of junkyard rescued cast iron. My thinking is more toward the later metric powerplants with a smaller footprint, more efficient power to weight ratio. Even some of the turbo four & six-cylinder engines could theoretically run circles around some of the older heavy engines while not overtaxing the suspensions.



      Unlike you, I have do not have the professional experience or qualifications to do much more than speculate? My thinking is that to use these current engines, we would need to do a complete powertrain from the engine all the way back to the differential to include the complete computer with all its sensors to give it optimal performance. That would entail the fuel injection system, so we would pretty much say goodbye to carburetors.
      John Clary
      Greer, SC

      SDC member since 1975

      Comment


      • #4
        Back in the 50's and 60's when most of us had low paying jobs, the only way to add horses cheaply was to drop a larger engine into whatever we were driving. Bought a 50's era pickup for $75 and a wrecked Buick for $25, so I had a nailhead powered Chevy pickup for $100. Couldn't buy much speed equipment for that even back then.

        Then the SBC started to become available in wrecking yards or cheap cars and the whole game changed as they would fit in anything and were cheap because there were so many of them. Ford's never gained much traction here in GM country for a couple of reasons including the front mount oil pump that complicated installation.

        It would have been nice to use a big block Mopar but they were few in our wrecking yards and costly. So it just became natural around here to just drop an SBC into what ever needed an upgrade. That's what happened to my 39 Ford coupe, SBC babieeee!

        I was never exposed to Studebaker until my late teens when I found a 53 with an SBC in it in a used car lot. I couldn't afford the $75 it would have set me back as a second car but I never forgot it. So in the 90's I found a rusty 54K and the SBC thing bit again.

        I never really got so brand loyal that it really mattered what got dropped into what. I just admired the swap for what it brought to the build so I guess I feel the same about a Stude in a Stude. Now dropping a stude six or AMC six or Ford six into a 'vette, that vibrates my car enthusiast nerve ending as that's not an upgrade. Might as well put an 60's SBC in a Hellcat, it's the same reasoning.

        Bob

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jpepper View Post
          My requirement for a swap is it should look like it could have been done by the factory. . . . .
          What do the rest of you think? I'm interested to hear others opinion. I think I could make an argument either way.
          Like you, I've done my share of wild and wonderful swaps over the years. Most times these days, I look at what the factory should have offered as an option, but for the lack of courage, never did. In the mid-1950s, Studebaker had the beautiful C-cab trucks, but held off until '55 even giving them the small V8 and never even considered the Packard V8.

          So, I played "what if . . . ?" The 1955 E12 is the most beautiful of all the trucks. The Packard Caribbean 305hp 374" with 2 x 4-bbls was in the parts bins. The Dana 60 with 4.10 Twin Traction was there. The Borg-Warner T89 was available. Air Conditioning and Power Steering were becoming available. Why put them all in the "Most Advanced, Yet Acceptable" truck of the 1950s? And smooth the firewall while we're at it.



          jack vines
          PackardV8

          Comment


          • #6
            That is an awesome truck, and something like it may have sold a lot more trucks to people looking for a powerful work truck. As for engine swaps, I have done many as well because my father ran a tow truck. There were always totaled cars with good drivetrain for donors. A swap that I am considering doing now is a cummins 4BT into my 47 M15A. The 170 is shot and missing parts, and the little cummins would fit, without molesting the radiator or firewall. The other benefit would be a modern 5 or 6 speed trans, in order to have overdrive and synchros. For the most part, I'm an OEM kinda guy, but well done swaps are good also.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by tsenecal View Post
              That is an awesome truck, and something like it may have sold a lot more trucks to people looking for a powerful work truck. As for engine swaps, I have done many as well because my father ran a tow truck. There were always totaled cars with good drivetrain for donors. A swap that I am considering

              now is a cummins 4BT into my 47 M15A. The 170 is shot and missing parts, and the little cummins would fit, without molesting the radiator or firewall. The other benefit would be a modern 5 or 6 speed trans, in order to have overdrive and synchros. For the most part, I'm an OEM kinda guy, but well done swaps are good also.
              Thanks for the compliment. It's a fun truck to drive and made the run to the IM in Tacoma in fine fettle.

              Because of the relatively short, narrow engine compartment, the M15A won't readily accommodate most common engine swaps, but it can and has been done. Go for the Cummins it makes sense to you; but because a 4BT weighs 750# and only makes 105 very noisy vibrating horsepower, it wouldn't be my first choice to power an M15A.

              The L32 supercharged Series III GM 3800 V6 is an incredibly tiny and powerful package. The supercharged version was never offered in a rear drive configuration, but a bit of parts swapping can make it happen.

              jack vines
              Last edited by PackardV8; 03-10-2019, 04:05 PM.
              PackardV8

              Comment


              • #8
                I have nothing against a well done engine swap, but I am tired of small block Chevy swaps. At least we are getting past the days of 350/350 swaps in most of the modified cars. It is the sameness that turns me off. The days of variety were much more interesting.
                If I had the money to swim in those waters, I would like a 51-52 coupe with a late Hemi. As it is I am very happy to play with my 259 Studebaker engine.
                "In the heart of Arkansas."
                Searcy, Arkansas
                1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
                1952 2R pickup

                Comment


                • #9
                  Anyone venture an opinion on swapping a 425 Olds into a Wagonaire? Is there room? Using the TH400 tranny that's on the engine, too.
                  Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It is nice when you buy a car with an engine swap already because then you can re-direct the angst expressed by others.

                    In my case a Frankenbaker. A Canadian '64 Daytona (with Commander trim) and a 65/66 (not sure which) McKinnon powered drivetrain (283, A-12 trans, flanged rear). Then again, I "swapped the swap" when I picked up a 66,000 mile Corvette 350 long block for $171. An additional $75 got me an Edelbrock carb & intake and a rebuilt distributor with a Pertronix. Basically I cut the engine miles in half and gained 100 HP for $250.

                    So yea, an engine swapped (and SBC at that), improperly badged, "Imported" Studebaker owned by a CASO. Get that Ba$tard out of here!!! All kidding aside it is your car, you paid for it. I get a REALLY rare, REALLY valuable car it is not wise to alter. But otherwise ... .
                    '64 Lark Type, powered by '85 Corvette L-98 (carburetor), 700R4, - CASO to the Max.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post
                      Like you, I've done my share of wild and wonderful swaps over the years. Most times these days, I look at what the factory should have offered as an option, but for the lack of courage, never did. In the mid-1950s, Studebaker had the beautiful C-cab trucks, but held off until '55 even giving them the small V8 and never even considered the Packard V8.

                      So, I played "what if . . . ?" The 1955 E12 is the most beautiful of all the trucks. The Packard Caribbean 305hp 374" with 2 x 4-bbls was in the parts bins. The Dana 60 with 4.10 Twin Traction was there. The Borg-Warner T89 was available. Air Conditioning and Power Steering were becoming available. Why put them all in the "Most Advanced, Yet Acceptable" truck of the 1950s? And smooth the firewall while we're at it.



                      jack vines
                      Jack, your truck is exactly the type of swap I am referring to. Your truck looks great. I really like it. The pictures do not do it justice. My first 4X4 was a rusty 64 Ford F-250. It was a six with a 3 speed. After finding a rust free cab and box I started on the drivetrain. In place of the 4.56 gearing it got 3.73 gear sets. I used a blueprinted 351W with a HD C-6. It had power brakes, power steering, AM/FM/CB radio, and stainless exhaust. This truck towed very well, Hauled well, pushed an 8' snowplow well, and got almost 16 MPG empty. When I sold it I provided the buyer the source of all the non-stock components so he could service the truck if need be. He thought it was built that way. It was one I should not have let get away. Ford did not make many 61 - 65 F-250 4X4 trucks.
                      james r pepper

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by PackardV8 View Post

                        Because of the relatively short, narrow engine compartment, the M15A won't readily accommodate most common engine swaps, but it can and has been done.
                        SBC in my M15 w/Chevy truck synchro 4 speed...

                        Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_1228 copy.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	119.5 KB
ID:	1725673

                        Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_0054 copy.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	93.0 KB
ID:	1725674


                        ...Pretty much a bolt in, but I like the idea of the Cummins even better.
                        Dick Steinkamp
                        Bellingham, WA

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
                          SBC in my M15 w/Chevy truck synchro 4 speed...

                          [ATTACH=CONFIG]79361[/ATTACH]

                          [ATTACH=CONFIG]79362[/ATTACH]


                          ...Pretty much a bolt in, but I like the idea of the Cummins even better.
                          Looks very nice.
                          james r pepper

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 52-fan View Post
                            I have nothing against a well done engine swap, but I am tired of small block Chevy swaps.
                            Of course, the reason they are popular is that they fit most anyplace, there is gobs of HP for not much money, lots of aftermarket parts to help with the swap, they have probably been done before in the application you are considering so you don't have to reinvent the wheel. The SBC was sort of GMs gift to hot rodders .

                            Although I'm personally not tired of seeing (or doing) SBC swaps (especially if you include LS SBCs), I also like to see the odd combos and marvel at the engineering involved and the deep pockets the swappers must have to do those swaps. Don't knock a SBC Chevy swap until you have done a non SBC swap.
                            Dick Steinkamp
                            Bellingham, WA

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Dick Steinkamp View Post
                              Of course, the reason they are popular is that they fit most anyplace, there is gobs of HP for not much money, lots of aftermarket parts to help with the swap, they have probably been done before in the application you are considering so you don't have to reinvent the wheel. The SBC was sort of GMs gift to hot rodders .

                              Although I'm personally not tired of seeing (or doing) SBC swaps (especially if you include LS SBCs), I also like to see the odd combos and marvel at the engineering involved and the deep pockets the swappers must have to do those swaps. Don't knock a SBC Chevy swap until you have done a non SBC swap.
                              I have owned three Studebakers with GM 350/400 engines installed. Other than these three, my other 50+ Studebakers had Studebaker engines (sometimes not the original engine or displacement).
                              Gary L.
                              Wappinger, NY

                              SDC member since 1968
                              Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X