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56 235 swap into my 49

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 49fastback, Nov 1, 2013.

  1. 49fastback
    Joined: Jul 26, 2013
    Posts: 23

    49fastback
    Member
    from Alabama

    OK guys, I found a nice donor 235 from a 56 truck complete with transmission and foot starter. I want to put this into my 49 car. Still trying to decide if I want to keep it 3 OTT or changes trans. I have read alot of posts, but still a little confused about the best way to swap this in to my 49. I apologize if I ramble, just not sure which direction to go here.

    I bought this engine from the nephew of the original owner, so I feel good about it's history and just looking in the breather hole it looks pretty clean and not gunked up. He said it has just under 90K on it and was running. Should I pull it apart or run it? I think it is still in good running condition. But since I am gonna have the car completely torn apart I am inclined to do something to keep me from pulling it out later for a rebuild. Not sure what typical life expectancy was on these engines.

    I would like to put on a dual carb intake and make the 235 as peppy as possible (cam change??). I know I will have to change front plate or drill holes to mount in 49. I have an AX15 trans that I was gonna use in a 69 truck - so also considering a Novak plate to adapt it to the 6. Would I use the 56 bellhousing if I did that?? Or can I use the 56 bell and 3 speed that is here and hook it up to the 49 linkage?

    I will be converting to an open driveline, need to find a rear and figure out what rear gear will be best with the 235 to keep it running in it's power range. I have read posts that seem to indicate the 235 won't be effective to run 70 on interstate even with an OD trans. If that is true, is the cost/trouble involved worth swapping to a 5 speed versus using the 3OTT. I do like the 3OTT feel/nostalgia, and my car has a cool art-deco kinda tube setup on top of the column for the shifter too. Can the 235 and 3OTT run 65-70 more comfortably with the rear end change - and if so what ratio would allow that while still having enough gear for the 235 powerband?
     
  2. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    90 was a lot of miles back then. If it is not sludged up, i would think it was rebuilt, or had the head off for a valve job.

    Oil was non-detergent, so even a well maintained engine would have build up by 90k
     
  3. grynder
    Joined: Nov 27, 2009
    Posts: 33

    grynder
    Member

    I have a 235 with a T5 in my 54 chevy. The rear is a 57 Chevy with 3.70's. it does 65-70 just fine. 3.55's would be fine to. The 3 OTT was fun but the 5 speed is where its at.
     
  4. jkski
    Joined: Jan 27, 2009
    Posts: 137

    jkski
    Member

    i would look hard at a T5 also behind the 235,3.55's are good or 370 if u are doing alot of highway drives.i can highly recommend a howard cam with solid lifters.your choice dual carb intake and headers(i went with yf carbs on 235 intake had weld holes up redrill for smaller base).also i bought most of my stuff from patrick's excellent service and info.
     

  5. jkski
    Joined: Jan 27, 2009
    Posts: 137

    jkski
    Member

    almost forgot use remflex gaket for intake and exhausd manifold,u will be very happy with the way it seals.
     
  6. High5
    Joined: Jul 2, 2012
    Posts: 185

    High5
    Member

    Before you get too far into this swap I would check out Tom Langdons Stovebolt engine company web site. He is one of the foremost experts when it comes to Chevy inline 6 cylinder engines. The site has lots of technical info including high performance goodies.

    If you select a tri five rear axle, make sure you redrill the spring perch forward an inch from where it is currently. If you don't, the axle will not be in alignment with your fender cutout.

    Best of luck on your project.
     
  7. 49fastback
    Joined: Jul 26, 2013
    Posts: 23

    49fastback
    Member
    from Alabama

    Almost forgot about this post. The project has been on hold anyway. Yes, Langdon's has lots of good info.

    I suppose I am still just a bit confused about the correct bell to use with a trans swap - will the 56 bell make things easier? I still would like to try and use this AX15 trans that I have - it's stronger than a T5 and I have it. The adapter is about $300 - but if it would bolt right up to the 56 bell that would be sweet.

    Or maybe I should just go for a 700r4?? Really not sure how the 6 works with a 4 speed auto - powerwise that is.

    Also, I have a thirdgen Fbody rear already laying around. It's about 62", so I know about 2" more than optimum, but I wanted to bump up the wheel to a 15" anyway. Are there easy steel wheel swaps to accommodate this?
     
  8. It's easier to use the stock bell (no mount changes) and an adapter if your trans has the same longer input shaft as the s10 T5 typically used in these conversions, has.

    Forget the third gen rear, too wide and not all that great, second gen is just about a bolt in and only an inch or so wider. Lots of other easier installs without needing to screw around with strange offset wheels.
     
  9. 49fastback
    Joined: Jul 26, 2013
    Posts: 23

    49fastback
    Member
    from Alabama

    I figured I couldn't get lucky enough to use this 3rdgen rear. But hey, can sell it off and find a donor easy enough I imagine.
     

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