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A V8 head on a Chevy II 153 or 181 4-banger??

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by mart3406, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. mart3406
    Joined: May 31, 2009
    Posts: 3,055

    mart3406
    Member
    from Canada

    I know that some racers will cut up
    and weld together a pair of SBC V8
    heads to fit on a 194-230-250-292 Chevy
    inline-6. Since the Chevy II 4-banger
    shares the same architecture and is
    basically a Chevy 6 with two cylinders
    missing', I'm wondering if it's possible
    or practical to adapt a SBC V8 head to
    a Chevy 153 or 181 Chevy 4-banger. If
    not a SBC head, are there any other
    V8 heads that can be adapted to fit on
    this engine?. Has anybody here tried
    or done this??


    Mart3406
    ================
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  2. DoubleJ52
    Joined: Jul 15, 2007
    Posts: 238

    DoubleJ52
    Member
    from Belton, MO

    The midget racers were and still are doing this but on newer aluminum block Arias I believe. Possible but maybe not practical.
     
  3. mart3406
    Joined: May 31, 2009
    Posts: 3,055

    mart3406
    Member
    from Canada

    -------------
    Yeah I know about the midget racers
    with the Arias/Fontana aluminum
    blocks. Since the blocks are new
    aftermarket cast aluminum "replicas",
    and merely based on the original
    Chevy design, Ariia/Fontana is free
    to put just about any head bolt pattern
    and coolant passage configuration
    they want into the deck during the
    manufacturing process. If you're
    majorly 'bucks up', you can even
    buy one of their Chevy II replica
    blocks machined and set up to take
    a Chrysler hemi cylinder head!:)eek:)
    But those all-out race block are
    something like 10, or 12 G's a pop!
    I'm talking about modifying a stock
    production 153 ChevyII or the 181
    Chevy industrial or marine version,
    to take a V8 cylinder head.of some
    sort.

    Mart3406
    ===============
     
  4. gearguy
    Joined: Jan 27, 2010
    Posts: 286

    gearguy
    Member

    I don't know the details of how the V-8 heads were fitted to the Chevy II blocks back in the day [1963-68] but the guys who did it right won plenty of races.

    The SESCO was the first real racing version of the "half V-8" but it used a chunk of V-8 block fitted to a cast aluminum crankcase. It debuted in 1968 and pretty much chased the Offy from the top ranks of midget racing.

    Eventually people [Arias and others] made cast aluminum blocks that eliminated the need for the chunk of V-8 block. Custom blocks allowed the use of any cylinder head available. Various Chevy, Ford, and Mopar heads found their way into use. A friend called those years "cylinder head of the month" club.

    ARCA truck racers were big users of the V-8 head four bangers. Kansas Race Products makes an IRON block that takes whatever cylinder head and uses Pontiac Iron Duke or Chevy II or Mercruiser cranks-rods-pistons-cams. They make decent power too [275-325 hp from 165 cubic inches].
     

  5. CNC-Dude
    Joined: Nov 23, 2007
    Posts: 943

    CNC-Dude
    Member

    A latter LS V8 head would be a better choice for the swap than the earlier SBC type head. There is also an application specific aluminum cylinder head for these 4 bangers that is even better than most any V8 head you could morph onto these blocks also, so no need to create a Frankenstein when there are better alternatives.
    [​IMG]
     
  6. I think i saw a chevy v8 years ago in a midget race car that they took off one head and left out the pistons on that side....it looked like a slant 4....always thought that would be a really cool little motor in something...has anyone ever seen or heard of this being done?
    of course you would have to cap that side off and figure out the intake set up....
    put dummy caps on the rod journals to keep the oil in
     
  7. an1951
    Joined: Dec 1, 2009
    Posts: 42

    an1951
    Member

    :rolleyes: Back in the 1960s, the open wheel midget racers began using the Chevy II and Mercruiser 4 cyl engines with modified stock heads for dirt racing, then adapted the SBC V8 head to the 4 cyl block thru the years. It was NOT a bolt on, but it could be done. The 4 cyl and the SBC block had the same bore spacing and push rod alignment pattern. The racers took the 4 cyl block to the machine shop and redrill the 4 cyl block to the SBC head bolt pattern, some welded up the old set up and then redeck the 4 cyl block. Between those years, came out some neat GM 4 cyl stuff= The SESCO, Arias GM 4 cyl, Fontana Nova base 4 cyl, Joe Deppe Engineering Nova 4, Pontiac Super Duty 4, Scat V4 and Kansas Racing iron block 4 cyl and then a Chevy 4 cyl big block made for a NHRA Competition Eliminator racer. The billet block alone was at $50,000! And for the rest of these aftermarket 4 cyl engine blocks, they are very, very expensive. They should be cheaper. How do I know all of this stuff? I'm from Los Angeles and knew the racing community of 4 banger racers that went to old Ascot Park, Lions Drag Strip, old Irwindale and OCIR. And I'm a fanatic in the world of drag racing. My 2 cents worth. Thanks. :rolleyes:<O:p</O:p<O:p</O:p
     
  8. an1951
    Joined: Dec 1, 2009
    Posts: 42

    an1951
    Member

    Back in the 1960s= the photos;
     

    Attached Files:

  9. an1951
    Joined: Dec 1, 2009
    Posts: 42

    an1951
    Member

    :rolleyes: Back then- more 4 cyl stuff=
     

    Attached Files:

  10. Bill Nabors
    Joined: Jul 24, 2011
    Posts: 283

    Bill Nabors
    Member

    I have a MErcuriser based on the Chevy II motor, it has two carbs and a special head. It is a twenty year old fresh build that was never cranked. I was told that if I made a manifold that didn't,t pass water through, that it would work. I planned to use on a small roadster. Any ideas
    Bil Nabors
     
  11. CNC-Dude
    Joined: Nov 23, 2007
    Posts: 943

    CNC-Dude
    Member

    What are you meaning by special head. Does it have siamesed intake ports or is it an 8 port head.
     
  12. junglejohn
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 2

    junglejohn
    Member
    from Borneo

    Wayne Finley at Don's Speed Center built several Mercruiser block - Boss 302 head motors and raced them in hiboy at Bonneville and El Mirage in 70s-80s. Quite successful I recall.
     
  13. Hotrodbuilderny
    Joined: Mar 20, 2009
    Posts: 1,646

    Hotrodbuilderny
    Member

    I did one for a goof 35 years ago, it wasn't easy the pushrods angled outward so the lifter cover no longer fit, so I made a new one. Now the distrubitor wouldn't go back in so I cut one up and and ground for flats on the shaft and used a 5/8(I believe socket and drove it off the camshaft,I welded 3/16 plate to the front of the tining cover and made a sleeve to take the distributor.I made a sheetmetal tunnel ram for a Holley 4bbl, used stock smallblock header it was a 11 1/2 to 1 motor using 301 pistons crane cam for attaching the head I laid the headgasket on the block it seems to me I had to make a few plugs for bolt holes that overlapped and match up water passages.It was one of the wildest sounding motors I ever played with.I use to start it up on an engine stand never put it in anything then when I got tired of playing my brother in law needed a 4 banger for his boat so I gave it to him, he took the head off and put the mercruiser head on it, and left the pistons and cam, way to much cam for his boat and it never planed off. Don't know where it went and have no idea if it would have worked in anything, but it sure looked and sounded wild.
     
  14. modified1927
    Joined: Nov 22, 2007
    Posts: 129

    modified1927
    Member

    I did a 153 to start with, broke it so started again with nove block, bored it .125 and had to sleeve 2 cyl. I had picked up an Ansen head (midget) it was cross flow and came with fuel inject that I never used. If I remember correctly used Merc. cruiser 140HP rods, Chevrolet 302 pistons (z28), big block Chevy aluminum rocker arms, Clifford cam, and s10 t-5 with a vega bell housing with cable clutch. in a T bucket, Right after Cotton Werksman brought out his Flatty powered T, took it to one of the Nationals in OKC early or mid 80's. I took it apart and sold the pieces at swapmeets through the 90's, but still have 3 chevy 153's in the barn
     
  15. 2OLD2FAST
    Joined: Feb 3, 2010
    Posts: 3,168

    2OLD2FAST
    Member
    from illinois

    There is a lengthy , informative thread titled chevy II banger on here , just do a search .

    dave
     
  16. RichFox
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 10,003

    RichFox
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I also was going to mention Waynes engine. He also used Hilborn injectors made for the Buick/SBC-NASCAR head. Much welded ports. Very raised. Not your average street head.
     
    ghornbostel likes this.
  17. alphabet soup
    Joined: Jan 8, 2011
    Posts: 1,479

    alphabet soup
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I thought the later Merc. cruiser engines. Were based on a Chevy II and had a version of a 460 Ford head?
     
  18. Zerk
    Joined: May 26, 2005
    Posts: 1,418

    Zerk
    Member

    It gets confusing, but the Mercruiser 470 is a 224 ci. aluminum block four with a Ford 460 head. Little in common with the little 151/181 ci. Mercruiser 4 that is based on Chevy Nova and GM Iron Duke engines.

    There are great threads on all these engines here on the HAMB.
     
  19. alphabet soup
    Joined: Jan 8, 2011
    Posts: 1,479

    alphabet soup
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Close but no cee-gar. Although, years ago my dad did have a boat with a ChevyII style motor. It had 2-1bls. and a solid lifter cam. It ran real good, but not as good as the stock 307 we put in.
     
  20. bobscogin
    Joined: Feb 8, 2007
    Posts: 1,761

    bobscogin
    Member

    Nova, yes. Marine Iron Duke? Not so sure the Iron Duke took to the water.

    Bob
     
  21. climer97007
    Joined: Sep 8, 2010
    Posts: 14

    climer97007
    Member

    The older Mercruiser Aluminum Block/Ford 460 Head engines were huge displacement (3.7L).

    The later Mercruiser Marine Iron Dukes were made in 2.5L (153 CI), 2.8L (171 CI), and I think it is still being made in 3.0L (181 CI) displacements. They have been using the SBC Bellhousing pattern for some time now.

    I'd like to know just the opposite. I want to know if the non-crossflow Marine Head (Intake and exhaust on the same side) can be bolted up to a 350 SBC block? Never mind the application or the stupidity involved, I just need to know if it can be done with a stock 3.0L Mercruiser Marine head? Flame on. Thanks!
     
  22. drtrcrV-8
    Joined: Jan 6, 2013
    Posts: 1,407

    drtrcrV-8
    Member

    As per an1951 & 2old2fast : In the '70s I knew a "bucks-down" midget racer in the SF Bay area who put a V-8 head on his 153 marine block by using a V-8 head gasket for a pattern to transfer the pattern to the Chev-II block, plugged the necessary original holes, drilled the block to match, & presto: one each "poor-boys Sesco"! it ran well enough that he made a drill-guide template out of metal so he'd be able to do it for later motors & for other people as well. He used a ported stock head, but today if I was going to build one, I'd hit the racecar swaps looking for a dash 10 Brodix(or similar) aluminum head already set up for racing(valves/springs/shaft rockers) & a left side sprint car header that matched the head ports(most sprint cars today are using 'spread-port heads'. You might check with your local circle track guys for a machine shop that built midget motors in the '70s & '80s : they might even have such a drill guide in the rafters. Check for more info in several of the other Chevy-II threads : I've given this same info at least 4 other times. You will need to fabricate a manifold to use a carb, but I believe Kinsler or Hillborn might even still have a few of the Fuel Injection manifolds in their backrooms. LOL! Remember ; The 153 is basically 1/2 of a 305/307 Chevy V-8, and the 181 the same of a 350 V-8.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2017
  23. climer97007
    Joined: Sep 8, 2010
    Posts: 14

    climer97007
    Member

    Yeah, the Chevy-II 4 cylinder (made through 1970) is not the same as the Iron Duke. I want to understand if the Iron Duke heads have the same cylinder spacing and bolt hole locations as a SBC V8. Anyone know?
     
    ghornbostel likes this.
  24. @Tim and I were talking about this just the other day. From his research its seems like there is not a lot that needs to be done to make one work. Maybe he will chime in on this subject.
     
  25. ... has anyone checked a newer/more modern (LS or other) head to see if they will match?
     
  26. I always thought the iron Duke was 151 cubic inches and the Chevy II was 153.

    Charlie Stephens
     
    scrap metal 48 likes this.
  27. climer97007
    Joined: Sep 8, 2010
    Posts: 14

    climer97007
    Member

    Correct. The old Mercruiser 4 cylinder engine used their own aluminum block and a cast iron Ford 460 head with a 3.7L displacement. Sorry for the confusion. The Chevy-II is a different beast from that or the Iron Duke.
     
  28. Stant
    Joined: Apr 6, 2017
    Posts: 1

    Stant

    View attachment 3501072 This a 2.5 chevy iron duke ported heads 1.940 intake ,1.6 ex stainles , titanium 4.030 . 3 in stroke. Has 120 merc crank welded destroked to large jour rod . Arias pistons , Manley 7075 Alu rods. Lunati cam. Set up for gas. My other is a sd4 set up for alky with a hilborn
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2017
  29. beck
    Joined: Sep 20, 2008
    Posts: 236

    beck
    Member

    On post #25 here, Mac the Yankee ask if anyone had looked at the LS style head fitment. I realize this is a 1.5 yr old thread, but I have to ask if anyone ever looked at this. I did a quick check and found the bore spacing is the same on the 181 and LS.
    I see there is now an intake that may make that swap workable if your ok with EFI. Check out the new Holley Sniper EFI Dual Plenum intake manifolds. Just use half of it and your done.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2018
  30. Weedburner 40
    Joined: Jan 26, 2006
    Posts: 805

    Weedburner 40
    Member

    I have a Mercruiser engine and a LS head. Unfortunately, the head won't work on the block.
     

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