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Technical A-Bone with Nova mill.

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by jdpaxton, Jan 2, 2019.

  1. jdpaxton
    Joined: Nov 14, 2014
    Posts: 138

    jdpaxton

    Kicking around the idea of a Nova 153 ci into a Model A. Anyone out there ever try it? I would like to leave the stock tranny and need to know the best route for a bell housing. Doing this with potential of returning back to original.
    Thanks in advance.
     
    hillbilly4008 likes this.
  2. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Maybe @Marty Strode still has photos he took when doing this same engine in our mutual friends 28/29 Ford truck.
     
    Hnstray likes this.
  3. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 11,962

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    These have been installed in "A" models quite a few times. I would suggest you think about using a '32/'39 style V8 trans and retain the original torque tube if you are trying to keep driveline closer to stock. That trans is easily adapted and has many improvements of the 'A' gearbox. SBC (4,6 & 8 pattern) to early Ford adapters are readily found.That alone will simplify the swap, though it does raise some issues with pedal mounts. There is a thread on here I have seen where that was addressed.

    Ray
     
  4. Ray has the right idea, use a standard speed shop adapter designed to adapt a SBC to an early Ford transmission and your off to a good start. I have a 181 cubic inch Mercruiser Marine in my AVATAR, it is basically the same engine. The V8 trans is the same length as the Model A so everything will bolt up to your stock A rear end.

    Charlie Stephens
     

  5. Cool 33
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 91

    Cool 33
    Member

    I have had one in a 28 roadster pickup since the late 70's. Used an early ford v-8 trans and 32 rear axle with about 3.78 ratio. While it looks cool with the Mercruiser valve cover, etc, it has been the most anemic under powered engine that you can imagine. After years of that, I finally went to 4.11 ratio and that helped a lot. I also drilled out the main jet in the carb and got the distributor set on a machine by a friend who knew what he was doing. Still has a lot less pep than what I would like, but at least it will keep up with traffic on the highway, just won't pass very energetically. Its a stock Chevy II motor so a marine one with more displacement might do better.
     
    walter likes this.
  6. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 12,258

    Tim
    Member
    from KCMO

    Do a search, plenty of threads about this swap :)
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  7. Attached is a photo of my front motor mount. You might want to consider using something similar. The angle iron was bolted to the frame using one stock hole and one additional drilled hole. The rubber biscuit is the stock GM motor mount.

    Charlie Stephens

    IMG_5528.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
    harpo1313, Hnstray and KoolKat-57 like this.
  8. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 8,757

    jimmy six
    Member

    Your being very kind to use Nova and 153" in the same sentence. I'll bet 99.9% were in Custom 100 ChevyII's. Starting in 1964 they were only in Custom 100's. 1968 they were all Novas and that base engine stopped in 1970 eventho the Nova went thru 74.
     
  9. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 366

    sdroadster
    Member

    I use a Speedway 396 Chevy "Hurst" motor big block 008.JPG mount. A little modification, and some new holes drilled.
     
    Okie Pete, walter, Tim and 3 others like this.
  10. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    I've posted this before so.....
    My neice bought a bare bones 69 Nova four door for her sons' first car many years ago, it had a 153/3 speed/column, needed a tune up, motor mount (no longer available), etc.
    The thing was a lot of fun to drive, very peppy, not what I expected, the kid wouldn't even try it out, called it an antique, next time I saw him he was driving some FWD POS.
    If I didn't already have a couple projects going I'd have put a Muncie in it and really had some fun.
     
    tractorguy likes this.
  11. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 11,962

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    In the early '70s, in a trade, I acquired a '70 Nova coupe with a 153/stick shift. I did some reconditioning on it and sold it, not very easily though. I drove it some as I am a bit of a fan of the oddball stuff....at least until the 'newness' wears off.

    Only 2nd gen 4 cyl Nova I can recall seeing in person. However, I do remember them being widely advertised in those days as 'price leaders' at metro Chevy dealers.
     
  12. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Just for the record, a 1970 Nova is a Gen III.
     
  13. Hnstray
    Joined: Aug 23, 2009
    Posts: 11,962

    Hnstray
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Quincy, IL

    I suppose if you separate the '62/'65 from the '66/'67....but they were the same platform (to my way of thinking, same Gen), with a reskin...the '68 up were true redesign from ground up...........

    Sort of like Model A's.....'28/'29 vs '30/'31.......are all considered Model A's as the basic underpinnings were little changed though the body designs had distinct but relatively minor changes. Now, the '32 was a generation change..........
     
  14. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Regardless of the 66/67's DNA being from the same egg as the 62/65's the automotive world still seperates them generationally when calling them out.
    With the HAMB having it's own arbitrary year cutoff the disconnect will continue but not because of any difference in generations or body styles regardless of mfg.
    I'm not whatsoever being critical of this place, we are what we are.
    Actually I'd hate to see a change in the accepted era mindset here like happened within organizations such as Goodguys and the NSRA.
     
  15. pragmatist
    Joined: Jul 5, 2010
    Posts: 45

    pragmatist
    Member

    With respect to the year cutoff, If you wish to remain relevant the proper course would be to add a year every five years or at least add a year every decade.
     
  16. jdpaxton
    Joined: Nov 14, 2014
    Posts: 138

    jdpaxton

    Lots of great info here fellas. Thanks again. I imagined a 3 9/16 x 3 in stroke would make the A really fly, especially with factory balanced crank over the A, and a 4.11 or the 3.78 rear. The A should have been lighter than a Chevy 11 and the stock rear about in the 3.55 to 3.23 area.
    Charlie has some good looking mounts there. sdroadster as well. Great to see folks bolting components on like these rather than using a welder. Makes adjustment later a world better.
    sdroadster could you post some pics of the trans/bell housing and clutch pedal area please? Great looking frame. Maybe Charlie could post his set up as well.
     
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  17. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,674

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  18. There were some changes made in '32 that made it a much easier conversion.. The 32 K member mounts a bracket for a brake and clutch pedal. I made a master cylinder mount with a lever to go from the original mechanical set up to the hydraulics. I have attached a couple of pictures. There may be a slightly redesigned K member that goes into the A. Vern Tardel might have something that might be useful, https://www.verntardel.com/collections/chassis/products/model-a-k-member. The '32 K member also supports the front wishbone. Note that the front wishbone on a '32 is longer than the one on the Model A. Another source of parts might be the conversion kit sold by people like Dennis Cling at clingsaftermarket.com, (480) 777-1202. This kit puts an early Ford V8 transmission behind a model A engine but the kit includes brackets for the wishbone mount and pedal mounts.

    Charlie Stephens

    Card1 032.jpg

    Card1 029.jpg

    Card1 034.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2019
  19. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 366

    sdroadster
    Member

    Here are some pictures you requested. All the 4 bangers have a Chevy bolt pattern on the bellhousing, and use a standard 168 tooth Chevy flywheel. Mine is a 181 Mercruiser engine, with a transmission adapter purchased on Ebay. As mentioned before the front motor mount is a Speedway item intended for a 396 Chevy. It requires a small piece of metal added, and new holes drilled. The repo clutch and brake pedals were purchased here on the HAMB. I wasn't completely satisfied with them, and will probably add tighter oil lite bushings sometime. Otherwise they fit ok, and make it easy to actuate the master cylinder and clutch. The steering is F1. I mounted it on top of the frame rail because I am going to box the chassis. I had difficulty imagining a huge hole in the side rail for the pitman arm. I don't have a body yet, and this design allows the steering box and shaft to be moved up or down by loosening the clamping device. I am currently working on a intake manifold, but am probably overthinking the design. I'm hoping to run two Stromberg 81's but haven't found any yet. model a 001.JPG model a 004.JPG model a 003.JPG model a 006.JPG model a 001.JPG model a 004.JPG model a 003.JPG
     
    Okie Pete, walter, Hnstray and 2 others like this.
  20. jdpaxton
    Joined: Nov 14, 2014
    Posts: 138

    jdpaxton

    Again thanks to both of you fellas. Charlies got some HD pedal brackets there that look fine. Also the same with SDROADSTER. The pedals look great and I do see the problem with pedals. The clutch/brake shaft needs a great deal more support than is shown. Maybe a stub shaft welded to the end of the brake and another bushing and brace added?
     
  21. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    OEM Chevy II flywheels are 153 tooth. To my knowledge the 4 cylinder engines will accept the 168 tooth flywheels but not with the Chevy II belhousing, not sure about starter compatibility though. Also, the transmission locating hole in the 62/63 Chevy II belhousing will be smaller, not an issue I'm sure when using conversion style belhousings.
     
  22. Just a bit of trivia on the starters. Most of the engine/transmission adapters between the SBC and the early Ford were designed in the mid fifties and take the starter used on the '55 Chevy (and maybe a couple of more years), not the later one. It has to deal with the way the starter bolts to the adapter.
    Charlie Stephens
     
  23. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 366

    sdroadster
    Member

    Charlie is right. The Chevy/Ford transmission adapter requires a early 3 bolt starter. That is why you have to use a 168 tooth flywheel. The starter location on the adapter requires it for tooth engagement.
     
  24. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 14,758

    DDDenny
    Member
    from oregon

    Just thought I would clarify your previous post on your use of "all" regarding four bangers using the 168 tooth flywheel, I just knew that would not work on oem belhousings.
     
  25. VinnieCap
    Joined: Oct 30, 2007
    Posts: 322

    VinnieCap
    Member

    Here is the 153ci Chevy II that will be going into my 28 Model A Tudor. The '39 transmission going behind it.
     

    Attached Files:

    Hotrodmyk and Okie Pete like this.
  26. If you note there is an unused bolt hole at the top of the transmission adapter. I had to remove it on my AVATAR for firewall clearance. You might want to check it out.

    Charlie Stephens
     
  27. VinnieCap
    Joined: Oct 30, 2007
    Posts: 322

    VinnieCap
    Member

    Thanks Charlie. The motor is just sitting for now. Next step, juice brakes. I will let you know if there is a clearance issue. I imagine there would be more room in a '32 than a '28 Model A.
     
  28. Marty Strode
    Joined: Apr 28, 2011
    Posts: 5,683

    Marty Strode
    Member

    Here is one with a 181. IMG_1081.JPG IMG_1756.JPG IMG_1762.JPG
     
    Tim and Okie Pete like this.
  29. sdroadster
    Joined: Jul 27, 2006
    Posts: 366

    sdroadster
    Member

    Tell me about that Clifford intake manifold. Is this a new product? Finding an intake for a 181 head has always been impossible, yours looks great. Thanks!
     
  30. And while you are at it who, made the header, looks great.

    Charlie Stephens
     

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