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1959 Rambler CC Wagon

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by msalamanca, Aug 2, 2013.

  1. msalamanca
    Joined: May 25, 2011
    Posts: 526

    msalamanca
    Member

    Been looking around about possible engine swaps.
    V6, Jeep straight 6, chevy 4.8 V8.
    From what I gather, its pretty hard to fit a 350 in there as there is no room.
    Is this because of the steering? or because of the inner fenders?

    Also what rear end would be suggested? a ford 9"?

    Thanks
     
  2. if it is the same as my '61 the lack of room is do to both the wheel wells and firewall. i think a 4.3 would fit with little firewall mods, but it will be tight. i did pick up a nissan v6 that is smaller but i just can't put a japanese motor in a rambler AMERICAN!
     
  3. msalamanca
    Joined: May 25, 2011
    Posts: 526

    msalamanca
    Member

    Thank you tb33anda3rd, thats kinda what I was thinking. But if the firewall and wheel wells where modified. I wonder it the header would clear the steering box, or would there be enough room for a arms.
     
  4. msalamanca
    Joined: May 25, 2011
    Posts: 526

    msalamanca
    Member

    any other ideas?
     

  5. R A Wrench
    Joined: Feb 4, 2007
    Posts: 479

    R A Wrench
    Member
    from Denver, Co

    I dont remember how he did the swap, but back in the mid 60's, a high school friend dropped a 58 Olds v-8 into a 60 rambler sedan. He must have moved a few things around and it was a real sleeper. Had a Cad-Lasalle 3 spd and a Ford 9". Same wheel bolt pattern. It can be done. Good luck.
     
  6. d2_willys
    Joined: Sep 8, 2007
    Posts: 4,188

    d2_willys
    Member
    from Kansas

    I don't have any info to share with you, but plan on putting a Packard 374 V8 in my 55 Nash Rambler. When I get around to it, I will certainly put out the status on the swap.
     
  7. farna
    Joined: Jul 8, 2005
    Posts: 1,239

    farna
    Member

    First of all, there are three different sizes of 59 Rambler -- the American, Rambler 6 and Rebel (Rebel is the six with a 250 V-8), and the Ambassador. The American has a tight engine compartment, but a small block will squeeze in. Almost any engine will fit the all the bigger cars.

    I've seen SBCs put in the American with rear outlet stock manifolds reversed so they exit at the front. That lets the exhaust clear the steering box. Center or rear outlet manifolds (or headers) won't clear. A Ford small block (302) is about 1.5" narrower than an SBC, so that's a better choice. There isn't much room side to side. A narrow V-6 will easily fit, but the accessories may not. You might need to fab accessory brackets or buy "hot rod" brackets made for early 30s cars.

    The engine bay is short too, so the only other straight six that will fit is the Ford 144/170/200/250 series. A 200 is about the same power as the original Rambler 196, the 250 is the better choice (the older 240 won't fit, it's about the same length as the 300).

    Four cylinders seem like a natural choice, but most have intake manifolds that stick way out to the side. The Jeep TBI four will fit though (not the port injected models!), as will the ;ate model Ford Ranger 2.3/2.5 with the intake that curves over the valve cover. Early 2.0/2.3 carb engines will fit also, though the engine may need to be offset a little to the passenger side.

    Early Ranger axles fits, but they are generally 7.5". The pre 93 8.8" is hard to find, only used with the 4.0L V-6 and commercial chassis. 93+ is 1.5" wider than earlier, and the Explorer axle is 1.5" wider than that (3" wider than early Ranger). Unless you plan on running drag radials or putting a lot of tire under the car the 7.5" axle will be fine. Street tires will break loose under that light car well before the axle breaks. Besides, Ford 7.5" axles are cheap and plentiful, just get a spare. It will still last a long time before anything breaks.
     
  8. msalamanca
    Joined: May 25, 2011
    Posts: 526

    msalamanca
    Member

    Thank you for all the info.
    So with the SBC the reversed headers will clear the steering box. Any other issues with that one?
    With the 302, what issues arise with that swap?

    Thanks
    Matthew
     
  9. farna
    Joined: Jul 8, 2005
    Posts: 1,239

    farna
    Member

    I don't know for sure about the 302 swap. You will likely have to reverse the headers on it too. It should fit better as it's narrower. I've seen one swap with a Ford 302, but don't recall any details. Most use the ubiquitous SBC.
     

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