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Projects 1950 Plymouth v8 swap-ideas?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Gonein60, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. Gonein60
    Joined: Feb 3, 2013
    Posts: 27

    Gonein60
    Member

    I have a 1950 Plymouth Special DeLuxe 4 door with the flat 6/3 on the tree. Looking to swap that out and make a cruiser with a little more kick to it...on a pretty tight budget. What's the best engine/tranny/rearend combo and how did you guys do yours? Just trying to get some ideas and suggestions. Any advice is greatly appreciated! Thanks!


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  2. 50dodge4x4
    Joined: Aug 7, 2004
    Posts: 3,536

    50dodge4x4
    Member

    Been covered a million times here. Do a search and tons of info will turn up.

    Buy a donner car or small truck with the desired drive train, and swap in the motor, trans, drive shaft, rear end, and accessories, junk the rest.

    Want to keep it all Mopar? Buy a 5th Ave (Diplomat, Mirada, Aspen, Volari) with a 318 or a 360 or a V8 Dakota pickup.

    GM? Pick a car with a V8 or a V8 S-10 pickup.

    Ford? Pick a V8 car, or a Ranger pickup.

    Or rebuild your flathead 6 and build it up a little, update the rear axle. Gene
     
  3. check out seabass49 thread...are putting a sbc in his.....you can buy mounts to make a sbc or sbm swap pretty easy
     
  4. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,797

    plym49
    Member
    from Earth

    I did this exact swap many, many years ago. 283, Super T-10, 67 Camaro rear.

    Offset the motor an inch or so to the passenger's side, and use a 55 Chevy cast iron manfold on the driver's side (front exit clears steering box).

    It's a traditional swap because it was done as long ago as it was.
     
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  5. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,509

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    You do know that those original engines have more power potential, right?
     
  6. I did a 360 v8 swap in my 1950 dodge and although it works very well and is fun as hell if I did it all over again, and my 230 six wasn't seized, I'd build up the six and put a 5 speed behind it.
     
  7. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,509

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    I have several customers who use Plymouths of this era as daily drivers, and road-trip cars, all with sixes that I helped warm up a bit.
     
  8. My 50 still has the flat 6 with a couple of hot rod goodies on it, and it runs pretty good and a far cry better than stock. Got a T5 waiting to go in it after it gets out of the upholstery shop. I had all the parts to swap in a 360/904 but decided to leave the 6, gets more attention and runs great. Biggest thing is getting the compression up, i shaved 100 thousands off the head and that really woke it up.
     

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  9. Shoprag
    Joined: Mar 8, 2005
    Posts: 724

    Shoprag
    Member

    I rebuilt the six and used an 8" out of a 62 meteor. It ran like a champ, 18.9 at the local track when dragfest was going on.

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  10. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,509

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    There are numerous rear axles that will swap. Explorer, Cherokee, etc. Same wheel bolt pattern.

    An S10 T5, bolted to an adapter on the stock bell, would increased the range.

    Milling the head 0.070" will boost the compression to a realistic level.

    That's where I'd start.
     
  11. ochamsrasor
    Joined: Aug 16, 2007
    Posts: 226

    ochamsrasor
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I did a 360 in mine wanted to keep it all MOPAR, Chassis Engineering INC. makes some nice mounts and Butch's Cool Stuff carries a nice bolt in set up and other nice stuff to complete the drivetrain swap.
     
  12. Offsetting the motor to the side, wouldn't that affect the driveline angles? say when the driveshaft comes out of rear and is going towards the rear, it would have a slight angle to it? is this ok?
     
  13. ZZ-IRON
    Joined: Feb 28, 2007
    Posts: 1,964

    ZZ-IRON
    Member
    from Minnesota

    Clean Plymouth nice car

    saw a 50 Plymouth 2 door sedan at the drags once
    it hauled ass he ran a 383 Chrysler
     
  14. daliant
    Joined: Nov 25, 2009
    Posts: 683

    daliant
    Member

    When the motor is offset to one side it must stay perpendicular to the rear end, you can't just move the front of the motor over and keep the transmission in the middle of the chassis, the angle will cause vibration in the drive shaft.
     
  15. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 8,994

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    They are a tough car to put a V8 in because they were built with a six and never had a V8 option. Not impossible but not easy or cheap.

    There are so many things not even touched on like what about the 6 volt electrics? Transmission? If you change the trans you have to change the rear axle too. It goes on.

    Seriously, the best thing you can do is keep the six. If this is impossible, or does not appeal to you, sell the car and get something newer. A 1955 will have 12 volt electrics and be set up for a V8. Even a 1951 DeSoto or Chrysler would be better as they offered a V8 and had a wider engine compartment .
     
  16. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,797

    plym49
    Member
    from Earth

    Totally disagree. I did mine when I was 16, in an open driveway, with the most basic set of tools you could imagine.

    There were naysayers back then, too. I got great pleasure driving to my local gas station and asking the head mechanic to check the oil - this was a guy who for years had told me it could not be done (I caught the bug quite young and had been dreaming of this swap) - the look on his face when he opened the hood was priceless.

    A SBC fits in between the stock fender wells although it is easier to remove the heater box and then put it back after the motor is in, even with the motor offset a smidge to the passenger's side.
     
  17. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,104

    George
    Member

    More than what?????:confused::eek: Yeah, spend money to get it up to a higher level that's still less than a stock 318. If you keep the OEM front end a 318 or 260 from a van or pick up has the rear sump set up you need. If you sub frame then the sump location is dictated by what front you select. There's also a bunch of axles to chose from 65-7 C body bolt in. 70s Duster, 71-3 Mustang & many other with a spring perch relocation. As was already said, search will show a ton of doing this with the 46-54 Plym/Dodges.
     
  18. in seabass car we are going to do fenderwell headers....so what does offsetting the motor over mean....actually moving the whole driveline over?
     
  19. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,797

    plym49
    Member
    from Earth

    No. Picture a center line front to rear. Now picture the engine/tranny mounted an inch or so offset from that line, but still parallel to it.

    The driveshaft and rear end don't care. Of course the tailshaft and pinion angles must align just as in any driveline setup.
     
  20. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,509

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    Mill the head 0.070"-0.090", and buy a new head gasket. Advance the timing a little.

    The guy said he was on a budget. This should be about $150.
     
  21. bigboy308
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
    Posts: 128

    bigboy308
    Member
    from Merlin, OR

    Friend of mine has a Slant 6 in a 1950 Hudson. Has over 100,000 miles on the conversion and still running strong. Plenty of "legs" for today's traffic.
     
  22. Slant Six is an entirely different motor, though.
     
  23. 50dodge4x4
    Joined: Aug 7, 2004
    Posts: 3,536

    50dodge4x4
    Member

    The flathead 6 is stock form, with a modern rear axle in the 3:23-3:55 ratio range will run down the highway with traffic all day long. milling the head/block will wake it up a lot, and there are several other hop up things that motor will respond well to.

    Adding a V6 or a V8 will add more power, but will loose a lot of "cool" factor. I would still change the rear end, those cars had 3:91 or 4 something rear gears, and pulling the rear brake drums is a pita. A trans swap will be required if you swap motors.

    You can do a disc brake conversion for less then you can rebuild the existing brakes, and have lots better brakes.

    The front suspension was light years ahead of anything the other car companies were putting out at the time, and work well in today's world with a couple minor modifications. The original shocks were mounted between the the upper and lower control arms, moving the top of the shock to the frame makes a world of difference in the ride. Adding a sway bar (or replacing the existing bar with one) off an 80s Jeep improves handling. A power steering rack can be added to replace the manual box if power steering is a requirement.

    Of course, all this info is available right here on the HAMB with a simple search. :rolleyes: Gene
     
  24. gimpyshotrods
    Joined: May 20, 2009
    Posts: 16,509

    gimpyshotrods
    Member

    1984-2001 Jeep Cherokee anti sway bar, mounted upside-down.
     
  25. yetiskustoms
    Joined: May 22, 2009
    Posts: 1,932

    yetiskustoms
    Member

    I'll be putting in a 318 in my 54 real soon. The flatheads tired. I'm a firm believer of Mopar/ Mopar. Chevy/Chevy ext.
     
  26. rusty snack
    Joined: May 19, 2014
    Posts: 11

    rusty snack
    Member
    from ARCADE,NY

    I just bought an incomplete 1950 plymouth that has a 472 Cadillac big block and a turbo 400 tranny in it..the fire wall was cut out to make it fit and the project was never finished but it does run and drive..anything is possible..im thinking about removing the caddy motor and go all mopar with a 440. any thoughts about that?
     
  27. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,104

    George
    Member

    Either would be good where they aren't Chevy!:) Where it runs & drives I'd keep the Caddy until it breaks & then make a decision. The 472/500 will take a 429/460 intake with an adaptor & apparently the valve covers too. Paint it Ford Blue, put a 429 decal on the air cleaner & have fun watching people try to figure it out!:)
     
  28. Ulu
    Joined: Feb 26, 2014
    Posts: 1,730

    Ulu
    Member
    from CenCal

    Actually, building a Plymillac is my idea of cool.
    IMO the Caddy engine has more cool factor than a Hemi even.
    Lots cheaper to find parts for Caddys too. Hemi parts are over the moon.
     
  29. the 440 don't go in easy but it will fit ,and then it goes real good
     
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  30. missysdad1
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,813

    missysdad1
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    My dear departed friend Manny Martinez, aka "Mr. Street Rod" of Simi Valley, CA, did the first 318/auto swap in my '48 coupe. He offset the motor to the passenger side, used a pickup pan and the exhaust manifolds from a late '60s Dart which wraps perfectly around the stock Plymouth steering column. He also used a Ford 9" rear from an early '70s Ford big car. Motor mounts and tranny mounts were fabricated. Clean and neat. I ran the car that way for many years and many, many, many miles with zero problems. The swap is covered in Tex Smith's "MoPar How-To" book that is now out of print but may still be available in used book outlets.
     

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