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49 chevy pickup sbc install steering box clearance

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by hanginlow58, Dec 10, 2009.

  1. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    I am installing a sbc into a 1949 chevy 3/4 ton pickup with stock steering and suspension, I knew the steering box was going to be a problem just didnt know how bad until I set the engine down between the frame, I was told there is a power steering kit that would solve the problem but thats more money, I am thinking of cutting the shaft and moving the box over to the left more and adding u-joints, I tried the search and surprisingly found nothing on this problem, I would like to hear how other people has got around this problem.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. OldSub
    Joined: Aug 27, 2003
    Posts: 1,067

    OldSub
    Member Emeritus

    Others have simply moved the box out and let the angle of the column and wheel change.

    I'd avoid cutting that shaft unless you are replacing the box but want to use the original column.
     
  3. poboyross
    Joined: Apr 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,846

    poboyross
    Member

    How about you do what Tugmaster did and use exhaust manifolds from a 94 Caprice. Granted, his was on a sedan, but it *might* help. Here's the thread:

    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=299399&highlight=tugmaster exhaust manifold

    I believe that you can use the passenger side manifold on both sides, but you have to do a little filing work. Using the passenger side on the driver's means that it dumps at the front instead of the back, too.
     
  4. 29nash
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
    Posts: 4,546

    29nash
    BANNED
    from colorado

    I agree, that's what I would do.
     
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  5. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    those manifolds look pretty cool but thats on a car not a truck , I dont think those will work, thanks anyway
     
  6. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    ya , I thought about that but not sure about living with the angle off on the steering wheel, but I think I am going to try that and see how bad it looks.
     
  7. OldBuzzard
    Joined: Mar 8, 2008
    Posts: 777

    OldBuzzard
    Member
    from MA.

    That type of manifold was used on some older Chevys and they dump straight down. Would that clear? As mentioned above the pass side manifold should work by dumping out the front.
     
  8. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,581

    Rickybop
    Member
    from Michigan

    Wow, hangin...I'm glad you brought this up. I'm gonna be doin' the same deal soon, and didn't realise about the clearance issue. I'll be watching for solutions.
     
  9. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,581

    Rickybop
    Member
    from Michigan

    Maaaan. Makes me wanna stick with the six in mine.
     
  10. wickedgoodracer
    Joined: Feb 16, 2009
    Posts: 193

    wickedgoodracer
    Member

    i bought a '48 back in 1970 that had the engine and trans offset to the right about 2 inches, it was setting on Hurst saddle mount and tube type trans mount. 283/3 on the tree.couldn't tell from the drivers seat.
     
  11. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,392

    Truckedup
    Member

    I'm doing the same swap in a 50 Chevy PU as we speak.With the engine centered in the chassis there is absolutely no room for any kind of exhaust manifold with the steering box in the stock location.And if using the stock brake pedal,does the brake pedal lever hit the manifold ?
    I offset the engine to the right about 1-1/2 inches.Gonna cut the steering column and use two u joints to move the stock box to the left another inch or so for clearance.I don't like cocking over the whole steering column so it looks likes a Chevette.
     
  12. poboyross
    Joined: Apr 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,846

    poboyross
    Member


    Yeah, that's what I was thinking....those 94's should still work on this application, perhaps even moreso, as they carry above instead of below and avoiding the steering altogether.....*theoretically*.
     
  13. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    thats something else I gotta check is that brake pedal, but I am thinking I am going to have to do what you are doing because you are right there is no room at all on that side for exhaust, if you have any progress pics. please post as I will do the same with what ever I come up with.
     
  14. fordcragar
    Joined: Dec 28, 2005
    Posts: 3,073

    fordcragar
    Member

    I installed a 283 in a 52 Chev 3/4 ton back in the early 70's and moved the engine over to the right like was mentioned. I think that I used 265 exhaust manifolds. It's a lot easier than moving the steering.
     
  15. they use a mid 80's toyota 4x4 steering box (p.s.) and unless you offset the motor to passenger side for clearance you better get a icepack for the huge headache your gonna have. lots of info here www.stovebolt.com
     
  16. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,392

    Truckedup
    Member

    Hanginlow58,here's a photo of the brake pedal lever to engine clearance I mentioned.This is the final mock up of my truck,engine on the mounts,offset 1-1/2 inches to the right.The engine is push back as far as possible using a non HEI type distributor.I suppose the engine can be moved foward some and it'll clear ok,maybe.Moving it foward compromises radiator to water pump clearance .This isn't a big deal,another guy showed me how he moved the pedal slightly by bending the arm and cutting a new hole in the toeboard.
    [​IMG]
    And with the engine offset like I said and the steering box in the stock location there was no way to bolt on a 80's 305 right or left side exhaust manifold.Being I don't want a shitty log exhaust manifold,I'm moving over the steering box with U-joints.
    This photo shows the first engine mock up.it's offset 1-1/2 inches to the right and there's only about 1-1/2 inches space between the steering box and head surface where the manifold bolts on.
    [​IMG]
    Do a google search on 47-59 Chevy truck power steering.There's a few stories on how to use a 80's power steering or manual gearbox and where to buy a kit to do it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2009
  17. Lobucrod
    Joined: Mar 22, 2006
    Posts: 3,961

    Lobucrod
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I have moved the box over on a couple of different builds. You would be suprised to know how many cars come from the factory with crooked steering wheels. I moved the bottom of the column over on a s-10 pickup to put a v-8 in it and it actually straightened the wheel up since it was put in at an angle from the factory. I'd take the path of lease resistance on this deal and move the box over. You will probably be the only one that knows that the wheel isnt straight.
     
  18. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 3,392

    Truckedup
    Member

    Yeah,I will try out the cocked column before cutting it.
    I also had to deal with the original bellhousing support crossmember.I'm using two front side mounts and a tranny mount.Depending on the engine location and tranny,the crossmember may interfer.The clutch housing just cleared the cross member but the tranny case hit it.I cut the cross member,fabricated flanges so the center piece can be lowered an inch and removed so the one piece clutch housing can be removed without a big hassle.There's 6 bolts on each flange.Some just hack out the cross member but it's located where the rear sring anchor points are for the stock front leaf springs,adds frame support.
    [​IMG]
    The stock rear removable tranny cross member just needed a slight trimming and a mount welded on for using a Saginaw or Muncie 4 speed.The crossmember is in the stock location.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2009
  19. olBlue
    Joined: Apr 19, 2007
    Posts: 9

    olBlue
    Member

    Here's some pictures of the 350 install in my '49 1/2 ton I did a number of years ago. Click on the pic's to link to a larger view.

    Used '55 pass car mounts and stands with a hand built x-member from 2" square tube for the front motor mount.

    [​IMG]

    Used a '54 pickup rear crossmember and '55 up V8 pickup bellhousing. This gave me all stock clutch linkage. Drilling out the xmember was a bitch but it was worth it in the end.

    [​IMG]

    Here's a shot of the outside of the frame where the xmember was bolted in. At least one of the original holes between the frame and xmember lined up.

    [​IMG]


    The stock brake pedal hits the exhaust manifold so I heated and bent the flat part of pedal arm like the clutch pedal is.


    [​IMG]

    Here's the pedals from the other side. The hole for the steering column in the firewall was "temporarily" opened up with a pair of snips to make room for the steering gear moving outboard 1-3/4"

    The steering gear was spaced out using some 1/8 plate and a couple of heavy wall tube spacers.
    One of the steering box bolts was replaced with a flat-head bolt that held the plate to the steering box.

    [​IMG]

    I heated and bent the bottom of the pitman arm back inboard the same distance I moved the box out.

    The throttle linkage is from a '55.2 - '59 V8 equipped truck. The holes that it bolts to on the firewall were in my stock '49 firewall and the pedal mounts to the floor exactly the same as the original pedal. The throttle linkage is available as a repro. I did have to do a little fiddling with the arm and the rod to the carb, but not much.

    [​IMG]

    And here's the right side.

    [​IMG]

    Don't know what you've got planned for the back end but here's what I put under mine.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. vik morgan
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 186

    vik morgan
    Member
    from Houston

    With my v8 swap into a '49, after a lot of head scratching, I bought the same power steering box sold in the conversion packages from a rebuilder. It mounts in the fender well, out of the way of the motor. From that point I bought the "official swap" drag link and pitman arms from one of the parts shops, and picked pulleys and a power steering pump from a junkyard. (leaving out details here) I installed steering pieces, cut my column, linked to steering box with link from Jeep Cherokee, and.... steering-power steering at that! I didn't set out to have power steering, but since it actually allowed me to solve the interference issue and made the truck nicer to drive, i'd say it worked out well. And, it didn't really cost all that much by getting the main parts though the junkyard and the rebuilder.
    FYI - In retrospect though, I wish I had clipped the front end because in the long run the swap would have been easier, nicer, and it would have been way easier to find a replacement spindle when I later had a wheel bearing seize on me. No one makes replacement truck spindles, so original ones are damn near impossible to find and when you do, are expensive as hell.
     
  21. HOLLYWOOD GRAHAM
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,043

    HOLLYWOOD GRAHAM
    Member
    from Ojai,Ca

    My 53 AD has a 350, this is what I did. Engine mounted center not offset as I think it looks odd when you pop the hood. The steering box was mounted closer to the firewall for engine clearence. The column was shortened and a lenthened drag link were made. I notched the frame for header clearence. This is a satisfactory way of doing it but I would prefer using a newer steering box, column and u-joints.If you are worried about the column looking too new use one of retro ones made for 30's type rods. Also the engine sits low making the fan not work to cool the hot water coming in at the top of the radiator. Snowwhite water pump riser with fix that.
     
  22. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 2,024

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    arent there certain factory manifolds with a dip clearance shape cast into them? going off of a vague memory. the manifold tucks inward closer to the block at about the locatin the steering box would be.
     
  23. T Hudson
    Joined: Sep 5, 2005
    Posts: 1,445

    T Hudson
    Member
    from Minnesota

    Make sure the steering gear is adjusted before you are done. After the motor is shoe horned in there you won't get to it very easy.
     
  24. lesabre59
    Joined: Nov 8, 2001
    Posts: 699

    lesabre59
    Member

  25. i have seen the chevy 4x4 power conversion on these trucks and 3 time from owners i heard it was shit and it's being removed. all 3 conversions were on trucks when purchased and the left tire hit on them all as the rubbing marks were easily seen.
     
  26. lawman
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,632

    lawman
    Member

    I guess My Grandson and I were lucky to not have a good stock steering box on our 51 AD frame for our 38 Chevy cab. We went to a Vega cross steering system and only had to fab up a bracket and go to a short AC-Delco oil filter. Will post the full set up next week when Speedway sends us a right hand thread Heim joint for our drag link. With the placement of the bracket on the frame in the picture everything clears the manifold and oil filter with no problems. TOM (Tired Old Man)
     

    Attached Files:

  27. jtownnewbe
    Joined: Nov 11, 2009
    Posts: 26

    jtownnewbe
    Member

    I helped a freind do the same swap that you are working on. We did not move the engine over. We used a 1967 Camero 302CI small block exhaust manifold. 1967-69 Cameros used rear steer steering. Also try 68 -73 Novas which may work: not sure but they are rear steer cars.
     
  28. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    thanks guys lots of good advise here and on lesabre59 post, I am going to have a long talk with the owner of this truck on sunday and let him know the options, if it was up to me I would do the MII route but I think this dude wants to keep it on the cheap as possible side and that looks like the way groucho did his on the other post, hopefully those manifolds are fairly easily to get.
     
  29. hanginlow58
    Joined: Sep 16, 2003
    Posts: 361

    hanginlow58
    Member

    yes I am looking forward to see the results of the vega setup.
     
  30. lawman
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,632

    lawman
    Member

    Hangin, Yes I will post. Searched everywhere on the net but could find nothing ref to a Vega box on an AD truck with stock springs.TOM (Tired Old Man)
     

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