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Author Topic: El Camino 500 swap.  (Read 51320 times)
Mike P
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Posts: 87


« Reply #15 on: October 26, 2009, 01:59:30 AM »

  Thanks, I kind of had you and the other Mike who's doing a 500/El Camino swap in mind when I took all the pictures.  Itís nice to know itís appreciated.

  Yes, I think it could be bolted.  Once everything is in position you could mark the holes in the frame plate by spraying some paint thru the big hole in the front of the frame which would allow you to use the existing holes in the frame for bolts.  I think you should be able to get at lest 4 bolts in from the top and you should also look at putting 2 bolts in from the front.  Keep in mind getting nuts on the back side of the bolts will probably be a REAL pain, but likely doable.

  If you do weld it in and want to remove it at some point, the welds can always be cut with a cut off wheel and ground down (admittedly a very time consuming process but doable).



Either way you do it you will need to gusset the mounts (I doubt the metal provided would withstand a hard launch without it).  Iím going to be making my own rather than using the bracing that came with the kit.  Once the engine is back out for final welding Iím going to be adding gussets like this to each side of both mounts.




As far as the water outlet for the heater I do believe the is enough room for the nipple and hose as long as you use a heater hose with a pre formed 90 degree angle in it.  If youíre running the factory AC box I also suspect it would be a huge pain to get to.  What a lot of guys do (and What I am planning) is to plug the rear outlet and drilling and tapping the boss located just below the thermostat housing.  This is where the hot water as pulled from on the earlier engines and it should be a simple procedure to drill and tap for a hose nipple.  

  On a side note I could get the front drain plug out (just barely) but boy am I glad I made the mod to the pan I'll be using so I won't have to.  That would make for a VERY messy oil change.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2009, 02:07:30 AM by Mike P » Logged
ST Dog
C4
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Posts: 499



« Reply #16 on: October 26, 2009, 06:09:30 AM »

In the event that the engine ever has to be removed/reinstalled from the car it would be physically impossible to do by just removing the motor mounts stud nut.  You would actually need to unbolt at least one if not both of the motor mounts from the engine in order to get it out.  Although I havenít done it at this point I will be turning the holes into slots to allow the engine to be removed and re-installed with the mounts attached.

I'd just slot one of the mounts. That's how GM/Cadillac did it.

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~JM~
Shop Keeper
C5
*****
Posts: 1853


« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2009, 07:59:33 AM »

Mike,

Long ago I posted up a build type post. I understand the extra time invested in doing so & I greatly appreciate your efforts! Looks to me like you are performing an excellent job on both the swap & in displaying the details of the swap for others to benefit from.

Thank you very much
~JM~
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PS. You don't have enough cam. Grin

...Summit has a kit for $99.... Shocked
Elk500
C2
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Posts: 25



« Reply #18 on: October 31, 2009, 10:53:46 AM »

MIKE!


awesome! this is SUCH a help, and its great knowing that there is  someone out there doing the same sway a month or so ahead of me!

pictures are awesome, i plan to do the same

a few differences, ive ordered the g-body specific dircet bolt in kit from MTS so we will see how that one works out


a few questions i have for you at this time

is how did you relocate the steerting column over?   i have converted the car to manual steering, got teh box out of an s10, it is slightly smaller, but if i did move the column over, it would only be like 1/16th of an inch if that

so yeah any help with that, would be great


also, the two holes that you used to put that threaded dowl thru to mesure the crank centre line, you said you drilled them, and if so, what mesurments did you take to get them square




hopfully i will be able to start my swap in three weeks or so, whenever my parts arrive
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1979 El Camino  LG4/200r4 Awaiting 500Caddy/ unknown tranny
1987 Camaro     LG4/700r4 Awaiting 400sbc/T-56
Elk500
C2
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Posts: 25



« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2009, 01:53:49 PM »

i knew i had anouther question  to ask



shifter linkage


do you/we have to convert to a floor shifter? or once the engne is in can the linkage go back on?
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1979 El Camino  LG4/200r4 Awaiting 500Caddy/ unknown tranny
1987 Camaro     LG4/700r4 Awaiting 400sbc/T-56
Mike P
C2
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Posts: 87


« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2009, 09:08:42 PM »

Glad itís of help Mike.

  One of the things about doing a swap like this is that nothing is really set in concrete on them and itís kind of build and figure it out as you go. Iím really interested in how you and yellowroket go about doing you swaps and what youíll be doing different than me.  Please post any pictures and comments you have about the mount setup youíre using as Iím pretty interested in seeing it.

  Iím currently back in the mid west on a short vacation so it will be a few days before I get back to work on mine. 

  To answer your questions, I did not relocate the steering column the clearance was achieved by offsetting the motor to the passenger side about 1 1/2", That was done not only for steering clearance but also for clearance on the exhaust.  From what Iíve read on these swaps, the engine offset is not uncommon in a G Body/500 swap.  As long as you keep the centerline of the trans output shaft is parallel with the center line of the rear end pinion vibration will not be a problem.  As far as relocating the steering column I know what you mean.  Iíve seen comments about relocating it on other G Body forums, but unless you plate over the existing hole and re-cut it there is not enough room to bolt the screws back into anything.  Like I said the clearance that is there is a bit snug but adequate.

  As far as the holes in the core support, they were already existing.  I ensured the core support was the same distance from the 2 lower core support mounting bolts (meaning is was square to the frame0 before  I inserted the bar to do the measuring.

  I wonít really know about the shifter until I get back and get the trans crossmember built and everything is in itís final position.  There may be a way to use the existing column shifter but it will be extremely close (and may even require the use of linkage at least partially made for flat stock to clear if it does at all).  I also have seen where someone modified their column and moved the linkage into the passenger compartment and then down thru the floor. 

  All that being said, I am keeping my eyes open for a decent price on a factory console and shifter as it really might be the easier route.

  Hope this helps.
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Mike P
C2
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Posts: 87


« Reply #21 on: November 08, 2009, 05:25:03 PM »


Well I finally got around to getting back on the El Camino today and decided to tackle the crossmember.

  Itís nothing elaborate but it is functional.  I figured Iíd do everything on one shot so I set the X pipe and mufflers in place so I could figure out where I needed to put reliefs in.

  The crossmember is basically a piece of 2Ē thick wall pipe (50Ēlong) with pieces of angle iron welded to the ends to fit inside the frame rails (then drilled and bolted in) and the foot for the transmission mount from a donor crossmember welded to it.  The angle iron sits in the step portion on the frame rail.


 The pipe was heated and exhaust reliefs  hammered into it. The whole mess was cleaned up painted and installed.  It strong enough to hold the weight of the transmission and me doing pull-ups on it without bending so I figure it will do fine.

  Nice thing was since I had everything laying around except a transmission mount the total investment was the $20 for the mount.




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dave brode
C5
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Posts: 1074


Best of 11.66, 113.96, 1.59 sixty


« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2009, 12:54:13 PM »

Keep at it, you'll be making rubber marks soon.

Dave
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3960 lb '71 C-10. 11.7-1 CR 514". PEP I beam rods floating MTS 18cc dish Probes, Elgin solid cam, home ported heads, MTS 2.19/1.84", Potter/Probe shaft rockers, edel 2115, 4781 850. Switch-pitch TH400, 12" 1800/3200 Tri-Shield convertor, 4.30 gears. Best so far of 11.66, 114.8 mph and 1.59 sixty
Mike P
C2
**
Posts: 87


« Reply #23 on: December 09, 2009, 02:53:59 AM »

  I haven't really been doing to much on the swap part of my build lately, I've been taking care of some other other little things.  The floor pan behind the drivers seat was rusted out, probably due to a leaking rear window (luckly it's pretty much the only rust in the truck), and the arear around the drivers striker bolt was broken out so I repaired those. 

  I want to get the exhaust in before I get back to figuring out how to hook the column linkage back up.  For that I've been waiting on a couple of parts to make my life easier down the road.

  I do know that if I ever have to pull the crossmember out the exhaust will need to be dropped down and depending what I'm doing maybe even removed.  Cutting the pipes and re-welding is a pain and I don't really like the band type clamps so I usually put a couple of ball and socket joints in.  This will allow me to drop the X pipe completly out from El Camino by removing 4 nut and 4 bolts.  They came in yesterday, I haven't decided yet if I'm going to put them before or after the mufflers yet,ut I'll get that figured out by the weekend. 

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Mike P
C2
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Posts: 87


« Reply #24 on: January 04, 2010, 03:17:56 AM »

As mentioned Iíve been plugging away with some other stuff and kind of avoiding the exhaust up until this point, but I finally bit the bullet and started on that this past weekend.

  Even with the stock manifolds clearance is tight to getting the flanges and head pipes in especially near the frame.

Passenger side



Drivers Side




For now Iím using some short sections of the original Cadillac head pipes (2 1/4Ē) in order to clear everything, these then size up into the 2 1/2 ď pipes that make up the rest of the exhaust. Itís not optimum but as the manifold outlet is 2 1/4 ď  I donít figure Iíll be losing anything.  At a later time I may open the manifolds up to accept 2 1/2Ē all the way up.

On the passenger side I could not even get the flange on the studs due to frame interference.  Rather than cut the frame I was able to trim the exhaust flange and shorten the forward stud a bit in order to get it on.  Once the flange if tightened there is a fair mount of clearance.





On the drivers side the flange fit with no problem but there is almost no clearance. 



For now at least I can build the rest of the exhaust system.  Iíll mark the areas of the tightest clearance on both sides prior to pulling the engine.  Once the engine is out Iíll either heat and clearance the areas with a BFH or cut and re-box those areas to give me a bit more room. 
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ccjohn2
C2
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Posts: 26


« Reply #25 on: January 05, 2010, 05:40:43 AM »

Mike, this is a great thread/ buildup documentary. Hopefully, our moderator will make it a sticky when you are finished with the install. That way it will be available for future builders to peruse. I'm in the process of doing a Pontiac, boy this helps alot. Thank you and keep the info coming.  Wink  CJay
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SRB
C2
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Posts: 23


Yep, its a oil road.


« Reply #26 on: January 05, 2010, 08:00:54 AM »

Mike,
    I have a 1984 SS El Camino (owned it 22 years now) that always be kept up. I also have bought caddy motors and getting ready to sadly take the ol girl apart. It has 200K but still runs fine (305 4B) and gets 24MPG.  Oh well, it does not get drove, has antique plates/ins, and the 305 has never really been that much fun, just good transportation.
   
    I been watching your progress and like it.

    My thread going now is in the General topics and is "Keep the 472 or make it bigger".  So I'm currently sorting out build options.

    My question is;   In your opinion would the block hugger headers fit on your swap?  Or even longer tubes?   I would like to have some good exhaust on my motor but yours look REALLY SNUG.    Maybe someone makes G body headers?     

     I'm anxious to see what you think of the performance and driveability.   

Regards

Steve

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dave brode
C5
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Posts: 1074


Best of 11.66, 113.96, 1.59 sixty


« Reply #27 on: January 05, 2010, 03:03:08 PM »

Steve,

iirc, there's a hooker BBC G body header that's been used, but I think there is a bit more involved than just swapping flanges.

I might look to see if there is a 1.75 or 1.875" BBC header for the chassis.

Full length headers are worth the effort imo.

Dave
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3960 lb '71 C-10. 11.7-1 CR 514". PEP I beam rods floating MTS 18cc dish Probes, Elgin solid cam, home ported heads, MTS 2.19/1.84", Potter/Probe shaft rockers, edel 2115, 4781 850. Switch-pitch TH400, 12" 1800/3200 Tri-Shield convertor, 4.30 gears. Best so far of 11.66, 114.8 mph and 1.59 sixty
Mike P
C2
**
Posts: 87


« Reply #28 on: January 05, 2010, 11:26:29 PM »

  Steve, in Yellowroket's build thread (hey guys a few questions for you) he says he picked up a set of Sanderson shorty headers and     "......They are no where close to fitting a G- body without quite a bit of cutting so i ended up sending them back....."

  While the exhaust pipes are tight where the manifolds exit, I do believe that a well thought out set of headers could be made to fit......I suspect as Dave mentions that it would be a bit more involved than just a flange swap though.  

  Headers were never in the plans for this build but if they had been I probably would have picked up a set of BBC/G Body long tube headers that look the closest to fitting.  I probably would have installed them as I was trial fitting the engine (rather than after the engine was in and mounts built).  Based on the curent placement of my engine I suspect I would end up having to slightly move the steering column a bit to the left.

  
« Last Edit: January 11, 2010, 04:41:06 AM by Mike P » Logged
Mike P
C2
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Posts: 87


« Reply #29 on: January 10, 2010, 05:55:33 PM »

  I was able to get back on the exhaust for a while today.  Got the pipes cut and fitted back to where the mufflers will be.  After I got everything tacked together I pulled the whole assembly out to do the final welding (it beats the heck out of trying to do the welding on a creeper under the car).



  The whole assembly is surprisingly easy to get out and back in.  With the ball and socket joints to connect the mufflers dropping the pipes out to remove the crossmember and/or remove the transmission (hopefully I never have to) will only be about a 10 minuet job.

The X pipe also does a real nice job in tucking the exhaust up to the body.


  
« Last Edit: January 11, 2010, 03:38:28 AM by Mike P » Logged
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